The title of our session today is “Virtue Ethics from a Global Perspective.” In my remarks, I would like to sketch out an account of what a global perspective on virtue ethics would look like. Here’s how I’ll proceed. First, I would like to explore some of the reasons why we need a global perspective on virtue ethics. This leads naturally to the second issue, which is a clarification of what we mean by a global perspective on virtue ethics. I (...) shall suggest a three part framework—consisting of the object of the virtue, the virtue itself, and the actions through which that virtue is expressed—for a global perspective on virtue ethics. This framework is a pluralistic one, striking a middle ground between absolutism and relativism. Along the way, especially in part two, I will look at several specific virtues, especially respect and courage, to see how this tripartite framework can be applied. The final result, I hope, will be an outline of what a global perspective on virtue ethics would look like. (shrink)
This paper explores Roger Revelle's activities in oceanography and institution-building during and after the Second World War. In particular, it explores his shift from a wartime acceptance of science serving mission-oriented objectives, to a defence ofthe distinction between basic and applied science. For Revelle, the Federal government, and especially the military, became theguarantor of basic research in oceanography. This understanding led him to privilege military sponsorship over contract research,and the physical over the biological sciences. He drew upon that understanding to (...) construct a unique institutional geography for science in southern California. (shrink)
Traditional causation posits that the past alone influences the present. In principle, however, the basic laws of physics permit the future an equal measure of influence: retrocausation. This symposium explores theoretical developments and experimental evidence for retrocausation. It is unique in stressing recent experiments in this exciting and potentially important new field.
This paper discusses archaeological, historical, and contemporary ethnographic evidence for the use of the San Pedro cactus in northern Peru as a vehicle for traveling between worlds and for imparting the “vista” (magical sight) necessary for shamanic healers to divine the cause of their patients' ailments. Using iconographic, ethnohistorical, and ethnographic evidence for the uninterrupted use of this sacred plant as a means of access to the Divine and as a tool for healing, it describes the relationship between San Pedro, (...) ancestor worship, water/fertility cults and also the common symbolic associations between San Pedro and wind-spirits. It closes by suggesting that the more than 2000 year time-depth of using this plant as a means for accessing the realms of Spirit and as a tool for healing should serve to challenge the unfortunate tendency in the contemporary United States to consider this plant as a “recreational drug.”. (shrink)
El autor recoge el versículo 13 del capítulo 19 del Evangelio atribuido a San Mateo reza así : "porque a cualquiera que tiene, le será dado, y tendrá más; pero al que no tiene, aún lo que tiene le será quitado", y lo vincula a la sociología de la ciencia, para a través del "efecto San Mateo" -los investigadores científicos eminentes cosechan aplausos mucho más nutridos, que otros investigadores, menos conocidos, por contribuciones equivalentes- exponer la estratificación social de las comunidades (...) científicas. (shrink)
Las Confesiones de San Agustín son una obra muy peculiar. Lectores e investigadores convienen en ello. No es fácil ‘definir’ ni comprender ese escrito. El presente estudio intenta una aproximación a su contenido mediante un examen de ciertos rasgos característicos de la obra que derivan de su propia singularidad. Y denunciamos también algunos impedimentos de comprensión y lectura. Confiemos en que esta mirada pueda ofrecer una guía inicial, pero orientadora, a la misma. Además, el estudio formal y temático revela una (...) dinámica interna, de su estructura misma, que va del relato autobiográfico a la reflexión (consideratio), de lo narrativo al pensamiento. Este avance tendencial culmina al concluir el libro IX, donde la dimensión narrativa de la obra termina. Razón por la cual los libros X-XI alcanzan el vértice teorético de las Confesiones, con su investigación de la memoria y del tiempo. El presente estudio concluye con una breve exposición del problema agustiniano de la subjetividad o el yo, en la base de esos dos libros. (shrink)
Does quantum mechanics clash with the equivalence principle—and does it matter? Content Type Journal Article Pages 133-145 DOI 10.1007/s13194-010-0009-z Authors Elias Okon, Philosophy Department, UC San Diego, 9500 Gilman Dr., La Jolla CA, 92093, USA Craig Callender, Philosophy Department, UC San Diego, 9500 Gilman Dr., La Jolla CA, 92093, USA Journal European Journal for Philosophy of Science Online ISSN 1879-4920 Print ISSN 1879-4912 Journal Volume Volume 1 Journal Issue Volume 1, Number 1.
Understanding the intrinsic/extrinsic distinction Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9549-x Authors Robert Francescotti, Department of Philosophy, San Diego State University, 5500 Campanile Drive, San Diego, CA 92182-6044, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Originally titled “Institutional, Group, and Individual Virtue,” this was my paper for an Invited Symposium on "Intersections between Social, Feminist, and Virtue Epistemologies," APA Pacific Division Meeting, April 2011, San Diego. -/- Abstract: This paper examines recent research on individual, social, and institutional virtues and vices; the aim is to explore and make proposals concerning their inter-relationships, as well as to highlight central questions for future research with the study of each. More specifically, the paper will focus on how (...) these studies can be approached in a systematic way such that it contributes to greater convergence between virtue theory, feminist epistemology, and social epistemology. To this end the paper develops a model of responsibility qua diachronic (longitudinal) assessment of the inquiry-directed agential habits (motivations, activities, and strategies), while explaining the place of this model within a broader, 15-point proposed “Responsibilist” research program. (shrink)
(June 2013) “The mind-body problem in cognitive neuroscience”, Philosophia Scientiae 17/2, Gabriel Vacariu and Mihai Vacariu (eds.): 1. William Bechtel (Philosophy, Center for Chronobiology, and Interdisciplinary Program in Cognitive Science University of California, San Diego) “The endogenously active brain: the need for an alternative cognitive architecture” 2. Rolls T. Edmund (Oxford Centre for Computational Neuroscience, Oxford, UK) “On the relation between the mind and the brain: a neuroscience perspective” 3. Cees van Leeuwen (University of Leuven, Belgium; Riken Brain Science (...) Institute, Japan) “Brain and mind” 4. Kari Theurer (Trinity College) and John Bickle (Philosophy, Mississippi State University) “What’s old is new again: Kemeny-Oppenheim reduction at work in current molecular neuroscience” 5. Bernard Andrieu (Staps Université de Lorraine) “Sentir son cerveau? Les dispositifs neuro-expérientiels en 1er personne” 6. Corey Maley and Gualtiero Piccinini (Philosophy, University of Missouri – St. Louis) “Get the latest upgrade: Functionalism 6.3.1” 7. Paula Droege (Philosophy, Pennsylvania State University) “Memory and consciousness” 8. Gabriel Vacariu and Mihai Vacariu (Philosophy, University of Bucharest) “Troubles with cognitive neuroscience”. (shrink)
When you are making up your mind, deciding what to do, you have the idea that you are free in what you are doing. It is hard to shake. You are going to do the one thing, but you can certainly do the other. That is what you think. Rational deliberators, as they can be called, have an inescapable sense of freedom. Dana Nelkin, in the following clear-headed paper, asks if this sense of freedom establishes that determinism is not true. (...) Read on for her answer. She also has things to say about another understanding of the claim that we know we are free when we are making up our minds. Whether or not you agree, you will learn things. Prof. Nelkin is at the University of California at San Diego. (shrink)
Robustness is a common platitude: hypotheses are better supported with evidence generated by multiple techniques that rely on different background assumptions. Robustness has been put to numerous epistemic tasks, including the demarcation of artifacts from real entities, countering the “experimenter’s regress,” and resolving evidential discordance. Despite the frequency of appeals to robustness, the notion itself has received scant critique. Arguments based on robustness can give incorrect conclusions. More worrying is that although robustness may be valuable in ideal evidential circumstances (i.e., (...) when evidence is concordant), often when a variety of evidence is available from multiple techniques, the evidence is discordant. †To contact the author, please write to: Jacob Stegenga, Department of Philosophy, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093; e‐mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
A journey surveying the land of space, time and motion Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9575-8 Authors Christian Wüthrich, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0119, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
A journey surveying the land of space, time and motion Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9575-8 Authors Christian Wüthrich, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0119, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
[Opening sentences:]What business does the government have in sticking its nose into people’s private affairs? What affairs could be more legitimately private than relationships involving sex and love? LOCKEAN LIBERTARIANISM These questions resonate with many individuals across a wide range of ideologies and beliefs. For many of us these questions will strike us as rhetorical questions to which the obvious answers are “none” and “none.” These responses reflect a Lockean libertarian strain in the social thinking of many intelligent and thoughtful (...) people. But of course matters are more complex, even as viewed from a Lockean libertarian perspective.1 Sex and love tend to bring about new children, and causing a child to exist is a social act with wide consequences for other people who could not be supposed to consent to bear these consequences. Libertarians will regard with equanimity the showering of externalities in the form of benefits that typically accompany the creation and upbringing of a responsible competent person who becomes a useful member of society. The libertarian will insist that the receipt of such benefits does not generate any reciprocal obligations to benefit those who benefit us in these unconsented to ways.—at least, not obligations that are legitimately enforceable and that justify forcible imposition on people’s liberty to lead their lives as they choose. But bringing children into the world can and often does impose net costs on people who do not consent to bear these costs. The introduction of one extra person may strain scarce resources... (shrink)
Cognitive psychologists, like biologists, frequently describe mechanisms when explaining phenomena. Unlike biologists, who can often trace material transformations to identify operations, psychologists face a more daunting task in identifying operations that transform information. Behavior provides little guidance as to the nature of the operations involved. While not itself revealing the operations, identification of brain areas involved in psychological mechanisms can help constrain attempts to characterize the operations. In current memory research, evidence that the same brain areas are involved in what (...) are often taken to be different memory phenomena or in other cognitive phenomena is playing such a heuristic function. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, 0119, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093‐0119; e‐mail: email@example.com. (shrink)
The vast majority of philosophers and legal theorists who have thought about the issue agree that there is such a thing as a moral right to privacy. However, there is little or no theoretical consensus about the nature of this right. According to reductionists, the right to privacy amounts to nothing more than a cluster of property rights and rights over the person, and therefore plays no autonomous explanatory role in moral theory (Thomson 1975, Davis 1959). Among non-reductionists, there are (...) almost as many accounts of the right to privacy as there are synagogues in the old town of Jerusalem. For one group of non-reductionists (perhaps the majority), the right to privacy is properly understood as a right of control, a form of autonomy. Within this group, some think that the right to privacy is the right to control information about oneself (Westin 1967, Beardsley 1971, Gerstein 1978, Fried 1970, Moore 2003), while others insist that it is the right to control access to oneself (Parker 1974, Scanlon 1975, Rachels 1975, Reiman 1976, Van den Haag 1971). For another group of non-reductionists, the right to privacy is the right to cognitive and/or physical inaccessibility (Gavison 1980, Garrett 1974, Allen 1988). Though these are by far the most widely adopted non-reductionist accounts of the relevant right, they are by no means the only ones currently on offer. There are hybrid accounts according to which the right to privacy is a cluster of various rights of control (Inness 1992) or a cluster of various rights of control and restricted access (DeCew 1997). And according to an influential “information-based” account, the right to privacy 1 is defined as the right that others not possess undocumented personal information about the right-holder (Parent 1983a; 1983b). The purpose of this paper is to bring some order to this theoretical chaos. On my view, none of these accounts of the right to privacy is accurate.. (shrink)
Structural realist interpretations of generally relativistic spacetimes have recently come to enjoy a remarkable degree of popularity among philosophers. I present a challenge to these structuralist interpretations that arises from considering cosmological models in general relativity. As a consequence of their high degree of spacetime symmetry, these models resist a structuralist interpretation. I then evaluate the various strategies available to the structuralist to react to this challenge. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, 9500 Gilman Drive, 0119, (...) University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093‐0119; e‐mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
Naturalism and scientific creativity: new tools for analyzing science Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-010-9513-1 Authors Daniel Burnston, Department of Philosophy, Interdisciplinary Cognitive Science Program, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive # 0119, La Jolla, CA 92093-0119, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Among the instances of apparent illiberality in Plato's Republic, one stands out as especially curious. Long before making a forced return to the cave, and irrespective of the kinds of compulsion operative in such a homecoming, the philosopher-king has been compelled to apprehend the Good (Rep. VII.519c5-d2, 540a3-7). Why should compulsion be necessary or appropriate in this situation? Schooled intensively through the decades for an eventual grasping of the Good, beginning already with precognitive training in music and art calculated to (...) equip the guardian with a natural affinity towards the good and beautiful (Rep. III.401d3-402a4), the fully mature guardian might be expected to leap towards the Good when it is first opportune. For the Good is, according to Plato, the greatest thing to be learned (megiston mathêma; Rep. VI.504e4-5, 505a2). Reflection on these questions permits us to develop a richer appreciation of the forms of necessitation and compulsion Plato envisages for his guardians, which turn out to be primarily merely hypothetical instances of nomic necessitation. It follows that many of Plato's appeals to compulsion are neither coercive nor objectionably authoritarian. Footnotesa I thank the participants in the Liberty Fund Conference on Ancient Political Theory, held in San Diego, California in 2006, for their helpful and spirited criticisms. Still more do I thank Fred Miller and David Keyt, whose incisive written comments improved an earlier draft of this essay in countless ways. Finally, I am indebted to Ellen Wagner, who first permitted me to see the importance of questions regarding prepolitical necessitation for our understanding of Plato's Republic and from whose paper on this topic I have benefited enormously. (See note 5 below.). (shrink)
In the United States, discrimination based on race, religion, and other suspect categories is strictly regulated when it takes place in hiring, promotion, and other areas of the world of commerce. Discrimination in one's private affairs, however, is not subject to legal regulation at all. Assuming that both sorts of discrimination can be equally morally wrong, why then should this disparity in legal treatment exist? This paper attempts to find a theory that can simultaneously explain these divergent treatments by providing (...) an account that fits the various aspects of our legal practices and our attitudes toward them, and justify those practices by providing an account that makes the divergence attractive from a moral point of view. The sorts of basis for the disparity are discussed: differences in our epistemological access to private and commercial discrimination; different effects these forms of discrimination have on their victims; and differences in the relative importance of the value of autonomy at stake. I conclude that while considerations of autonomy provide the best explanation for the disparity in attitudes toward the legal treatment of discrimination, they still fall well short of an explanation that completely fits and justifies our current practice. Specifically, I suggest that the disparity between our current legal treatment of private versus commercial discrimination is based on a mistaken belief about the greater importance of autonomy in the private realm than in the commercial sphere. Because this belief is mistaken, a practice designed to consistently respect the value of autonomy ought to differentiate less between private and commercial discrimination, either by regulating the former more heavily, or by regulating the latter less heavily. (shrink)
Last June I was an invited speaker at the symposium “Frontiers of Time: Reverse Causation—Experiment and Theory,” part of a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) held on the beautiful campus of the University of San Diego. (Here, reverse causation means a violation of that most mysterious law of physics, the Principle of Causality, which requires that any cause must precede its effects in all reference frames.) I had originally intended to just talk about (...) my work on the transactional interpretation of quantum mechanics and its somewhat retrocausal aspects (i.e., back-in-time handshakes of quantum waves, etc.). However, a new idea involving signaling with nonlocal quantum processes had come my way, and I decided to present it as a retrocausal quantum paradox at the symposium. It made a big splash there, but none of the experts present could identify any problem with the proposed thought experiment or resolve the paradox. In this column I want to tell you about this causality-violating communications scheme and its possible consequences. (shrink)
Left-libertarianism, like the more familiar right-libertarianism, holds that agents initially fully own themselves. Unlike right-libertarianism, however, it views natural resources as belonging to everyone in some egalitarian manner. Left-libertarianism is thus a form of liberal egalitarianism. In this article, I shall lay out the reasons why (1) left-libertarianism holds that (a) private discrimination is not intrinsically unjust and (b) it is intrinsically unjust for the state to prohibit private discrimination, and (2) that, nonetheless, a plausible version of left-libertarianism holds that (...) it is unjust for the state (and many private individuals) to take no steps to offset the negative effects of systematic private discrimination. The basic line is not new. It is simply that there is nothing unjust in principle with private discrimination, but there is (at least typically) something unjust about doing nothing to promote equal life prospects. (shrink)
Abstract Although noting the importance of organization in mechanisms, the new mechanistic philosophers of science have followed most biologists in focusing primarily on only the simplest mode of organization in which operations are envisaged as occurring sequentially. Increasingly, though, biologists are recognizing that the mechanisms they confront are non-sequential and the operations nonlinear. To understand how such mechanisms function through time, they are turning to computational models and tools of dynamical systems theory. Recent research on circadian rhythms addressing both intracellular (...) mechanisms and the intercellular networks in which these mechanisms are synchronized illuminates this point. This and other recent research in biology shows that the new mechanistic philosophers of science must expand their account of mechanistic explanation to incorporate computational modeling, yielding dynamical mechanistic explanations. Developing such explanations, however, is a challenge for both the scientists and the philosophers as there are serious tensions between mechanistic and dynamical approaches to science, and there are important opportunities for philosophers of science to contribute to surmounting these tensions. Content Type Journal Article Category Original paper in Philosophy of Science Pages 1-16 DOI 10.1007/s13194-012-0046-x Authors William Bechtel, Department of Philosophy, Center for Chronobiology, and Science Studies Program, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0119, USA Journal European Journal for Philosophy of Science Online ISSN 1879-4920 Print ISSN 1879-4912. (shrink)
This paper investigates the semantics of derived statives, deverbal adjectives that fail to entail there to have been a preceding (temporal) event of the kind named by the verb they are derived from, e.g. darkened in a darkened portion of skin. Building on Gawron’s (The lexical semantics of extent verbs, San Diego State University, ms, 2009) recent observations regarding the semantics of extent uses of change of state verbs (e.g., Kim’s skin darkens between the knee and the calf) and (...) Kennedy and Levin’s (Adjectives and adverbs: syntax, semantics and disclosure, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2008) theory of change, it is shown, contrary to previous analyses, that a fully compositional semantic analysis is possible, and thus that there is no argument from derived statives for word formation differing from semantic composition above the word level in requiring deletion operations, as in Dubinsky and Simango’s (Language 72:749–781, 1996) analysis. Further, such an analysis, by contrast with previous ones, both compositional (Jackson in Resultatives, derived statives, lexical semantic structure, Doctoral dissertation, UCLA, 2005b; Condoravdi and Deo in Proceedings of the 18th International Congress of Linguists (CIL 18), Seoul, 2008 and non-compositional (Dubinsky and Simango 1996), correctly predicts, as shown by a range of arguments, that the meaning of the derived stative contains the meaning of the verb it is derived from and that it therefore contrasts fundamentally with morphologically simple adjectives in the kind of meaning that it has. (shrink)