The confusion of categories in Spinoza's ethics, by E. Albee.--Hegel's criticism of Spinoza, by K. E. Gilbert.--Rationalism in Hume's philosophy, by G. H. Sabine.--Freedom as an ethical postulate: Kant, by R. A. Tsanoff.--Mill and Comte, by N. C. Barr.--The intellectualistic voluntarism of Alfred Fouillée, by A. T. Penney.--Hegelianism and the Vedanta, by E. L. Hinman.--Coherence as organization, by G. W. Cunningham.--Time and the logic of monistic idealism, by J. A. Leighton.--The datum, by W. B. Pillsbury.--The limits of the physical, (...) by G. A. de Laguna.--Is the dualism of mind and matter final? By H. W. Wright.--The revolt against dualism, by A. H. Jones. (shrink)
The term body integrity identity disorder (BIID) describes the extremely rare phenomenon of persons who desire the amputation of one or more healthy limbs or who desire a paralysis. Some of these persons mutilate themselves; others ask surgeons for an amputation or for the transection of their spinal cord. Psychologists and physicians explain this phenomenon in quite different ways; but a successful psychotherapeutic or pharmaceutical therapy is not known. Lobbies of persons suffering from BIID explain the desire for amputation in (...) analogy to the desire of transsexuals for surgical sex reassignment. Medical ethicists discuss the controversy about elective amputations of healthy limbs: on the one hand the principle of autonomy is used to deduce the right for body modifications; on the other hand the autonomy of BIID patients is doubted. Neurological results suggest that BIID is a brain disorder producing a disruption of the body image, for which parallels for stroke patients are known. If BIID were a neuropsychological disturbance, which includes missing insight into the illness and a specific lack of autonomy, then amputations would be contraindicated and must be evaluated as bodily injuries of mentally disordered patients. Instead of only curing the symptom, a causal therapy should be developed to integrate the alien limb into the body image. (shrink)
Correspondence should be addressed to David A. Leopold firstname.lastname@example.orgDuring the viewing of certain patterns, widely known as ambiguous or puzzle figures, perception lapses into a sequence of spontaneous alternations, switching every few seconds between two or more visual interpretations of the stimulus. Although their nature and origin remain topics of debate, these stochastic switches are generally thought to be the automatic and inevitable consequence of viewing a pattern without a unique solution. We report here that in humans such perceptual alternations (...) can be slowed, and even brought to a standstill, if the visual stimulus is periodically removed from view. We also show, with a visual illusion, that this stabilizing effect hinges on perceptual disappearance rather than on actual removal of the stimulus. These findings indicate that uninterrupted subjective perception of an ambiguous pattern is required for the initiation of the brain-state changes underlying multistable vision.Visual perception involves coordination between sensory sampling of the world and active interpretation of the sensory data. Human perception of objects and scenes is normally stable and robust, but it falters when one is presented with patterns that are inherently ambiguous or contradictory. Under such conditions, vision lapses into a chain of continually alternating percepts, whereby a viable visual interpretation dominates for a few seconds and is then replaced by a rival interpretation. This multistable vision, or 'multistability', is thought to result from destabilization of fundamental visual mechanisms, and has offered valuable insights into how sensory patterns are actively organized and interpreted in the brain1, 2. Despite a great deal of recent research and interest in multistable perception, however, its neurophysiological underpinnings remain poorly understood. Physiological studies have suggested that disambiguation of ambiguous patterns. (shrink)
The concept of the person, and the notion that the latter is an entity separate and distinct from other persons, has persisted as one of the more secure ‘givens’ of philosophical thought. We have very little difficulty, in observer language, in pointing to a person, describing his or her attributes, distinguishing him or her from other persons, etc. Likewise, it is ordinarily not much of a problem to subjectively experience, both sensorially and conceptually, the self – that is, to distinguish (...) in agent language ‘my person’ from the rest of the universe. The second of these two perspectives on the person defines the ‘I,’ ‘ego,’ or ‘identity.’ Several recent developments in experimental psychology and brain science – while not defeating the ordinary notion of the person on the merits of data per se – at least force a re-thinking of tacit assumptions basic to our sense of the concepts of both the person and personal identity. In this paper, I would like to show how the concept of the person needs revision, and at the same time to raise some objections to Shaffer's (1977) account of the consequences of brain bisection and brain transplant with respect to the fate of the person and his identity. CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
Background: Continuous viewing of ambiguous patterns is characterized by wavering perception that alternates between two or more equally valid visual solutions. However, when such patterns are viewed intermittently, either by repetitive presentation or by periodic closing of the eyes, perception can become locked or "frozen" in one configuration for several minutes at a time. One aspect of this stabilization is the possible existence of a perceptual memory that persists during periods in which the ambiguous stimulus is absent. Here, we use (...) a novel paradgim of temporally interleaved ambiguous stimuli to explore the nature of this memory, with particular regard to its potential impact on perceptual organization. Results: We found that the persistence of a perceptual configuration was robust to interposed visual patterns and, further, that at least three ambiguous patterns, when interleaved in time, could undergo parallel, stable time courses. Then, using an interleaved presentation paradigm, we established that the occasional reversal in one pattern could be coupled with that of its interleaved counterpart, and that this coupling was a function of the structural similarity between the patterns. Conclusions: We postulate that the stabilization observed with repetitive presentation of ambiguous patterns can be at least partially accounted for by processes that retain a recent perceptual interpretation, and we speculate that such memory may be important in natural vision. We further propose tha the interleaved paradigm introduced here may be of great value to gauge aspects of stimulus similarity that appeal to particular mechanisms of perceptual organization. (shrink)
One way of dealing with the proliferation of conjectures that accompany the diverse study of the evolution of language is to develop precise and testable models which reveal otherwise latent implications. We suggest how verbal theories of the role of individual development in language evolution can benefit from formal modeling, and vice versa.
Evolutionary psychologists should go beyond research on individual differences in attitudes and focus more on detailed models of psychological mechanisms. We argue for complementing attitude research with agent-based computational modeling of mate choice. Agent-based models require detailed specification of individual choice mechanisms that can be evaluated in terms of both their psychological plausibility and the population-level outcomes they produce.
This study examined whether worktime control buffered the impact of worktime demands on work–family interference (WFI), using data from 2,377 workers from various sectors of industry in The Netherlands. We distinguished among three types of worktime demands: time spent on work according to one’s contract (contractual hours), the number of hours spent on overtime work (overtime hours), and the number of hours spent on commuting (commuting hours). Regarding worktime control, a distinction was made between having control over days off and (...) vacations (leave control) and having control over starting and finishing times (flextime). These three worktime demands were expected to have separate as well as joint effects on WFI, whereas worktime control should buffer these adverse effects of worktime demands on WFI. Stepwise regression analyses showed that working high numbers of contractual and overtime hours was indeed associated with high WFI. Further, worktime control indeed made a difference in terms of WFI: whereas leave control contributed directly to lower WFI, flextime buffered the adverse effects of long contractual workhours. Our results suggest that very long working days should be prevented, and that worktime control may be a powerful tool to help workers maintaining a good work–family balance. (shrink)
If in our use of imagery we are all of us the unacknowledged legislators of the world, it would follow that one can ‘serve the cause of sexual equality in education’ by challenging the way our images of the academic are gendered. This is the excellent stated purpose of Sabina Lovibond's short new book, Iris Murdoch, Gender and Philosophy. The effect is as I shall show somewhat at odds with this.
Although I agree with Sabine Muller’s conclusion that we should first seek to find alternatives to amputation for patients suffering from Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID), I disagree with one of the major premises that she uses to argue for her claim. Muller argues that patients with BIID are likely not autonomous when they request that the limb be amputated. Muller’s argument that BIID suffers are not autonomous is flawed because she conflates philosophical conceptions of autonomy with the conception (...) of autonomy that is operative in the context of medicine. (shrink)
I discuss two ways in which emotions explain actions: in the first, the explanation is expressive; in the second, the action is not only explained but also rationalized by the emotion's intentional content. The belief-desire model cannot satisfactorily account for either of these cases. My main purpose is to show that the emotions constitute an irreducible category in the explanation of action, to be understood by analogy with perception. Emotions are affective perceptions. Their affect gives them motivational force, and they (...) can rationalize actions because, like perception, they have a representational intentional content. Because of this, an emotion can non-inferentially justify a belief which in its turn justifies or rationalizes an action; so emotions may constitute a source of moral knowledge. (shrink)
Jonathan Dancy has developed a very refined theory called ethical particularism. He has argued extensively for the metaphysical part of his position. However, the accompanying epistemology is not yet clear. In this paper I will sketch a particularist epistemology that is consistent with Dancy’s particularist metaphysics, although my approach differs in certain respects from epistemological claims Dancy has made. I will defend an epistemology that states: 1. that moral knowledge is based on intuitions and 2. that we need emotions in (...) order to have moral knowledge. I will call this approach ‘affectual intuitionism’. Dancy rejects both claims, but I will argue that his arguments against these claims are not convincing. (shrink)
Engineers are normally seen as the archetype of people who make decisions in a rational and quantitative way. However, technological design is not value neutral. The way a technology is designed determines its possibilities, which can, for better or for worse, have consequences for human wellbeing. This leads various scholars to the claim that engineers should explicitly take into account ethical considerations. They are at the cradle of new technological developments and can thereby influence the possible risks and benefits more (...) directly than anybody else. I have argued elsewhere that emotions are an indispensable source of ethical insight into ethical aspects of risk. In this paper I will argue that this means that engineers should also include emotional reflection into their work. This requires a new understanding of the competencies of engineers: they should not be unemotional calculators; quite the opposite, they should work to cultivate their moral emotions and sensitivity, in order to be engaged in morally responsible engineering. (shrink)
Two ways to locate a modal claim in time • Time of Modality vs. Time of Prejacent • Condoravdi’s (2002) terminology: – temporal orientation – temporal perspective but which is which? 2 Time of modality..
This book opens up a new route to the study of knowledge dynamics and the sociology of knowledge. The focus is on the role of metaphors as powerful catalysts and the book dissects their role in the construction of theories of knowledge and will therefore be of vital interest to social and cognitive scientists alike.
As the cognitive neurosciences set out to challenge our understanding of consciousness, the existing conceptual panoply of meanings attached to the term remains largely unaccounted for. By way of bibliometric analysis, the following study first reveals the breadth and shift of meanings over the last decades, the main tendency being a more 'brainy' concept of consciousness. On this basis, the emergence of consciousness studies is regarded as a 'trading zone' (Galison) in which experimental, philosophical and experiential accounts are dialectically engaged. (...) Outside of academic discourse, a neurocognitive concept of consciousness is embraced by popular self-help literature that sweepingly adopts this new discourse and the novel neuropharmacological tools in the self-help toolbox. Consciousness studies are hence not only the product of epistemological and methodological struggles (scientific dimension) but also part of the current re-alignments regarding the notion of consciously acting selves in society (societal dimension). (shrink)
Women who suffer from fertility issues often use in vitro fertilization (IVF) to realize their wish to have children. However, IVF has its own set of strict administration rules that leave the women physically and emotionally exhausted. Feeling alienated and frustrated, many IVF users turn to internet IVF-centered forums to share their stories and to find information and support. Based on the observation of Dutch and Greek IVF forums and a selection of 109 questionnaires from Dutch and Greek IVF forum (...) users, we investigate the reasons why users of IVF participate in online communities centered on IVF, their need for emotional expression and support, and how they experience and use the information and support they receive through their participation in the online community. We argue that the emotional concerns expressed in such forums should be taken into account by health care ethics committees for IVF-related matters in order to promote more patient-oriented care and support for women going through IVF. (shrink)
Umberto Eco's Baudolino (2000) never achieved the success of his first novel, The Name of the Rose (1980), although both are historical fictions that provide literary clothing for philosophical ideas. In Baudolino, Eco again dramatizes the disagreement between rationalists and empiricists regarding the sources of our concepts and knowledge, ideas that came to the fore during the medieval period and which continue to be pertinent questions in epistemology. Propositions of either sense experience or logic and reasoning being the basis for (...) knowledge, offer Eco an opportunity for playing what he calls "a game of ambiguity about truth and lies."1 Historical uncertainties, the holes in the fabric of our knowledge about .. (shrink)
The name of Thomas Reid rarely appears in discussions of the history of moral thought. This is a pity, since Reid has a lot of interesting ideas that can contribute to the current discussions in meta-ethics. Reid can be understood as an ethical intuitionist. What makes his account especially interesting is the role affective states play in his intuitionist theory. Reid defends a cognitive theory of moral emotions. According to Reid, there are moral feelings that are the result of a (...) moral judgment made by reason. The judgment and the feeling together constitute what Reid calls sentiments. Reid thinks that affective states (feelings and sentiments) play the role of helping reason to guide and control the egoistic feelings and passions. The affective states are particularly important, in Reid's view, because the motivating force of reason is often defeated by the stronger motivating force of the passions. So without affective states, we would often not be able to do what is morally good or right. In this paper, I will argue that the role of the affective states is still too limited in Reid's approach. He takes affective states to have a merely motivational function, namely, to help reason to control the passions and motivate to action where reason is too weak. Reid thinks that in making moral judgments we do not need to have feelings, feelings are at most a result of a judgment. Instead, I will argue that affective states also play an epistemological role. (shrink)
: My contribution intends to show that the traditional philosophical concept of work (Marx, Hegel, Kierkegaard, Marcuse, Arendt, Habermas, and the rest) leaves out a crucial dimension. Work is reduced, for example, to the interaction with nature, the problem of recognition, or economic self-preservation. But work also establishes an ethical relation having to do with the needs of others and to the common good—a view of work that should be of particular interest for feminist and gender philosophy. This dimension makes (...) visible, as socially necessary work, the so-called reproductive sphere pertaining to giving birth and raising children, but it also generalizes the aspect of care, which plays a significant role in traditional woman's work. The ethical relation to the other is a characteristic feature of human work and in this sense, the possibility of working is a part of a good life. (shrink)