This paper argues that the founding fathers of the tradition of Scottish Enlightenment natural jurisprudence, Gersholm Carmichael (1672–1729) and Francis Hutcheson (1694–1746), articulated a view of rights that is pertinent to the contemporary dominance of the language of rights. Maintaining a metaphysical foundation for rights while drawing upon the early-modern Protestant natural law tradition, their conception of rights is more significantly indebted to the pre-modern scholastic natural law tradition than often realized. This is illustrated by exploring some of the background (...) to their respective theories of rights, detailing the precise reasoning that Carmichael and Hutcheson brought to bear upon their conception of rights, and then exploring their application of their understanding of rights to the question of property. (shrink)
Fiona Nicoll and Melissa Gregg met on the job at a new university having both moved from Sydney to Brisbane to take up their appointments. Here they share reflections on teaching a cultural theory course that they inherited from a prominent Australian Professor of Cultural Studies, offering the perspectives of two consecutive generations of cultural studies theorists now teaching in the field since the early 1990s. This situation gives rise to new interpretations regarding the value and uses of theory (...) in the classroom. Noting the subtle differences involved in teaching the same theoretical material in different cities, the ironies of teaching radical cultural theory in a conservative institutional environment, and the specific opportunities and challenges of teaching cultural studies theory as opposed to others, the article considers some of the silences teachers must also contend with in their classroom practice, drawing on and expanding the terrain established by Thorkelson's thesis. (shrink)
One of the most certain truths in the world is Descartes' "I think, therefore I am". Descartes was so certain of the existence of some kind of essential _self_ that others have coined the term "Cartesian theater" to describe the sense that we all have of being the audience enjoying the rich play of our experiences. We tend to believe in an enduring self, independent of our individual percepts. Sometimes this virtual "self" in our mind, sitting in the audience of (...) the Cartesian theater who watches our thoughts is referred to as a homunculus. This is not necessarily to imply that most of us believe that the self or homunculus is an identifiable region of the brain like the pineal gland, just that at some level of organization, we assume that there is a self that is separate from the stuff that self experiences, remembers, thinks about, etc. (shrink)
Roger Penrose, in _The Emperor's New Mind_ (1989), writes about the way Mozart perceived music. Mozart did not play a piece in his mind in real time, or even speeded up, but could hold it before him all at once. We all do this, although usually for much shorter riffs than entire symphonies. I have argued that the all-at-onceness of our thoughts and perceptions is at least as inexplicable as what it is like to see red; I think the aural/temporal (...) all-at-onceness makes the point at least as vividly as the visual/spatial all-at-onceness of the curl of smoke in an art nouveau poster. (shrink)
In this global village, it is relevant to look at two educational visionaries from two continents, John Dewey and Rabindranath Tagore. Dewey observed that the modern individual was depersonalized by the industrial and commercial culture. He, thus, envisioned a new individual who would find fulfillment in maximum individuality within maximum community, which was embodied in his democratic concept and educational philosophy. Tagore's educational vision was based on India's traditional philosophy of harmony and fullness. It focused on self-realization within the context (...) of international education. This article compares the educational visions of Dewey and Tagore and demonstrates that Tagore's international educational perspective adds to Dewey's concepts of social individual and democracy and that their perspectives have implications for contemporary education. (shrink)
Contemporary philosophy of language and semantics rests on an unjustified and largely unacknowledged Platonism. This Platonism misdirects inquiry in unfruitful directions, seeking what meaning “really is”, and what terms “really mean”. Arguing against the sorts of hypotheses put forward by Kripke and Putnam as well as the theory of two dimensional semantics, I claim that if meaning is to be construed in any philosophically interesting way, it must be thought of in strictly internalist terms: meaning is “all in the head”, (...) or else it is a colloquial term with no precise meaning whatsoever. Construed internalistically, however, meaning is no less mysterious an aspect of consciousness than the oft-cited redness of red. Squeamishness about facing up to this mystery can only hamper attempts to get to the heart of the matter, and find out what semantics is really all about. (shrink)
To counter possibilities for human rights as cultural imperialism, (1) I develop a notion of human rights as culturally particular and valid only locally. But they are an increasingly generalizable particularism. (2) Because the incommensurability of different cultures does not entail an uncritical tolerance of just about anything, but rather allows for an objectivating stance toward other communities or cultures, locally valid human rights have a critical capacity. (3) Locally valid human rights promote a community's self-representation and thus allow for (...) diversity, rejecting the coercive (mis)representation of a community or culture as incapable of representing itself. (shrink)
As we encounter things in the world around us, when do we judge something to be just a heap or aggregate of smaller things, like a pile of sand, and when do we judge it to be a true, unified, single thing? It depends, almost always, on how you look at it. I have argued that when we look at the world in strict reductionist terms, nothing above the sub-atomic level really counts as a holistic thing. Are there any things (...) above the micro level that really are inherent, single things in a way that does not depend on how you look at them? Do we have any reason to believe that there are, in contrast to the reductionist view, inherently unitary mid-level things in the universe? (shrink)
Internal mechanisms, especially those implicating the self, are crucial for the egoism-altruism debate. Self-liking is extended to close others and can be extended, through socialization and reinforcement experiences, to non-close others: Altruistic responses are directed toward others who are included in the self. The process of self-extension can account for cross-situational variability, contextual variability, and individual differences in altruistic behavior.
"We think that grass is green, that stones are hard, and that snow is cold. But physics assures us that the greenness of grass, the hardness of stones, and the coldness of snow, are not the greenness, hardness, and coldness that we know in our own experience, but something very different. The observer, when he seems to himself to be observing a stone, is really, if physics is to be believed, observing the effects of the stone upon himself.".
By the light of the moon -- Seeing -- Going inside -- Our magical bodies -- And then there were words -- Awakening -- Beyond the mists -- Heaven on earth -- What would love do? -- Circle of light -- The love and the laughter -- Life is but a dream -- Mirror, mirror on the wall.
Over the past decade, umbilical cord blood (UCB) has routinely been used as a source of haematopoietic stem cells for allogeneic stem cell transplants in the treatment of a range of malignant and non-malignant conditions affecting children and adults. UCB banks are a necessary part of the UCB transplant program, but their establishment has raised a number of important scientific, ethical and political issues. This paper examines the scientific and clinical evidence that has provided the basis for the establishment of (...) UCB banks. We also discuss the major ethical issues that UCB banks raise, including ownership of cord blood, processes for obtaining consent for its collection and storage, and confidentiality. Finally, we review other concerns about commercial non-altruistic banking, including concerns about social justice, equity of access and equity of care. (shrink)
There is a biological controversy of long standing between proponents of the Wilsonian view that all organisms of a certain class have at least one part that is a cell and proponents of the contradictory, or Dobellian, view that some organisms in the same class have no parts that are cells. The controversy is considered from the standpoint of the methodology of explication. It is concluded that on the grounds of prevalent biological usage, precision, utility and generality the Wilsonian view (...) may be defended successfully against attacks that have been made upon it. (shrink)
Norris, McQueen & Cutler claim that Merge is an autonomous model, superior to the interactive TRACE model and the autonomous Race model. Merge is actually an interactive model, despite claims to the contrary. The presentation of the literature seriously distorts many findings, in order to advocate autonomy. It is Merge's interactivity that allows it to simulate findings in the literature.
Krueger & Funder (K&F) overstate the defects of Null Hypothesis Significance Testing (NHST), and with it the magnitude of negativity bias within social psychology. We argue that replication matters more than NHST, that the pitfalls of NHST are not always or necessarily realized, and that not all biases are harmless offshoots of adaptive mental abilities.
This work presents the basic arguments and fundamental themes of the political and moral thought of the seventeenth-century philosopher, Samuel Pufendorf--one of the most widely read natural lawyers of the pre-Kantian era. Selections from the texts of Pufendorf's two major works, Elements of Universal Jurisprudence and The Law of Nature and of Nations, have been brought together to make Pufendorf's moral and political thought more accessible. The selections included have received a new English translation, the first for both works (...) in roughly sixty years. The editor, a political scientist, and the translator, a philosopher, have developed a volume that is comprehensive and representative of Pufendorf's thought without being repetitive, fragmented, or obscure. (shrink)
Samuel Alexander was one of the foremost philosophical figures of his day and has been argued by John Passmore to be one of ‘fathers’ of Australian philosophy as well as a novel kind of physicalist. Yet Alexander is now relatively neglected, his role in the genesis of Australian philosophy if far from widely accepted and the standard interpretation takes him to be an anti-physicalist. In this paper, I carefully examine these issues and show that Alexander has been badly, although (...) understandably, misjudged by most of his contemporary critics and interpreters. Most importantly, I show that Alexander offers an ingenious, and highly original, version of physicalism at the heart of which is a strikingly different view of the nature of the microphysical properties and associated view of emergent properties. My final conclusion will be that Passmore is correct in his claims both that Alexander is significant as one of the grandfather’s of Australian philosophy and that he provides a novel physicalist position. I will also suggest that Alexander’s emergentism is important for addressing the so-called ‘problem of mental causation’ presently dogging contemporary non-reductive physicalists. (shrink)
This paper features a detailed philosophical classification of the four types of deists that Samuel Clarke presents in the second series of the Boyle Lectures for promoting Christianity (1705). In the course of this paper I determine, for each type of deist, the truth values of twelve important propositions, and I show that these four types of deists may be categorized as (1) ‘no-providence’, (2) ‘physical-laws-providence’, (3) ‘moral-but-no-afterlife’, and (4) ‘moral-and-afterlife’. Using an accompanying table of propositions as a visualization (...) tool, I also show that Clarke's account of these four types of deists may be thought of as ‘progressively Christian’: for each type of deist, from lower-number deists to higher-number deists, there is an increasing number of truth values that are Christian-like. (shrink)
The essay analyses the chief meanings of the idea of equality both in the natural law theory and in the theological thought of Samuel Pufendorf, as well as his criticism to the Hobbesian conception of equality, utilitaristically founded. In his natural law Theory Pufendorf, unlike Hobbes, conceives equality not as equality in capacity, but as juridical equality ( aequalitas juris ). Equality, the second of the three duties to one another, prescribes to every man to treat every other as (...) his equal by nature, respecting his dignity as he is an equally rational and free human being. Equality is also interpreted by Pufendorf both as the equal right and power to self-preservation and as men's equal subjection to the natural law. In his main theological work Pufendorf, on the contrary, takes his idea of equality from the Lutheran thesis of the universal priesthood of all the faithful. (shrink)
Super-substantivalism is the thesis that space is identical to matter; it is currently under discussion ? see Sklar (1977, 221?4), Earman (1989, 115?6) and Schaffer (2009) ? in contemporary philosophy of physics and metaphysics. Given this current interest, it is worth investigating the thesis in the history of philosophy. This paper examines the super-substantivalism of Samuel Alexander, an early twentieth century metaphysician primarily associated with (the movement now known as) British Emergentism. Alexander argues that spacetime is ontologically fundamental and (...) it gives rise to an ontological hierarchy of emergence, involving novel properties such as matter, life and mind. Alexander's super-substantivalism is interesting not just because of its historical importance but also because Alexander unusually attempts to explain why spacetime is identical to matter. This paper carefully unpacks that explanation and shows how Alexander is best read as conceiving of spacetime as a Spinozistic substance, worked upon by evolution. (shrink)
This essay begins by considering Samuel Fuller's 1963 film Shock Corridor as a model of schizo-violence – a disorganised violence that eludes the Oedipal, moralising binary of action and reaction, and instead opens up the violent action to multiple becomings outside Oedipal and nationalistic framings. Through the de-Oedipalisation of the violent events punctuating American history, Shock Corridor performs a schizoanalytic model of desire capable of giving free rein to the force of traumatic affections. The latter part of the discussion (...) situates Fuller's film and the contemporary US military machine as diametrically opposed in their approaches to what we might call ‘the affective politics of war’. Several contemporary scenarios revolving around both actual war violence and Kathryn Bigelow's film The Hurt Locker (2008) serve to show how the schizophrenising operations of the brain itself constitute the greatest obstacle in the military's efforts to contain or repress the traumatic affections generated by violence and war. (shrink)
In this article, I discuss how Samuel Stanhope Smith advanced Reidian themes in his moral philosophy and examine their reception by Presbyterian revivalists Ashbel Green, Samuel Miller, and Archibald Alexander. Smith, seventh president and moral philosophy professor of the College of New Jersey (1779–1812), has received marginal scholarly attention regarding his moral philosophy and rational theology, in comparison to his predecessor John Witherspoon. As an early American philosopher who drew on the ideals of the Scottish Enlightenment including Common (...) Sense philosophy, Smith faced heightened scrutiny from American revivalists regarding the danger his epistemology presented to the institution of religion. The Scottish School of Common Sense was widely praised and applied in nineteenth-century American moral philosophy, but before the more general American acceptance of Common Sense, Smith already appealed to Reidian themes in his methodology and treatment of external sensations, internal sensations, intellectual powers, and active powers of the human mind. In this paper, I argue that Smith's use of Reidian themes for grooming his student's morality conflicted with the educational expectations from revivalists on Princeton's board of trustees who demanded more attention on orthodox theology. I identify Smith's notions of causation, liberty, and the moral faculty as primary reasons for this tension over Princeton's educational purpose during the first decade of the nineteenth century. (shrink)
Drawing on new manuscript sources, this volume offers seven contributions on Hermann Samuel Reimarus, the most significant biblical critic in eighteenth-century Germany, as well as an eminent Enlightenment philosopher, a renowned classicist ...
Although there are many books on Samuel Johnson's moral and religious thought, none have managed to provide a complete analysis of his relationship to the ethics and theology of the eighteenth-century. This major new study examines the background to Johnson's views on a wide range of issues that were debated by the philosophers and divines of the age, emphasizing the ambivalence and contradiction inherent in his orthodoxy, while challenging the assumption that his religious beliefs were unstable and filled with (...) anxiety. (shrink)
The Philistines.—Hebrew monotheism.—Administration of Samuel.—Early Hebrew psalmody.—Exterior marks of the Prophet.—Modes of divination.—Foreigndangers of Israel.—Appointment of Saul.—Romantic Philistine campaign.—Ammonite inroad.—Enmity with Amalek.—Massacre of the Amalekites.—David, anointed by Samuel.—David, Saul’s armour-bearer.—David, Saul’s son-in-law. —David, a freebooter.—David with Achish of Gath.—David reinforced from Israel.—David’s return to Ziklag.—Battle of Mount Gilboa.
A philosophical exploration of the ideal of intellectual integrity drawing on Samuel Butler's semi-autobiographical Bildungsroaman, The Way of All Flesh; and relating this to C.S. Peirce's idea of the scientific attitude and Percy Bridgman's reflections on the conditions needed for this ideal to flourish.
Beckett often made use of images from the visual arts and readapted them, staging them in his plays, or using them in his fiction. Anthony Uhlmann sets out to explain how an image differs from other terms, like 'metaphor' or 'representation', and, in the process, to analyse Beckett's use of images borrowed from philosophy and aesthetics. This is the first study to carefully examine Beckett's thoughts on the image in his literary works and his extensive notes to the philosopher Arnold (...) Geulincx. Uhlmann considers how images might allow one kind of interaction between philosophy and literature, and how Beckett makes use of images which are borrowed from, or drawn into dialogue with, philosophical images from Geulincx, Berkeley, Bergson, and the ancient Stoics. Uhlmann's reading of Beckett's aesthetic and philosophical interests provides a revolutionary new reading of the importance of the image in his work. (shrink)