This study uses the Schwartz Values Questionnaire and version 2 of the Defining Issues Test to investigate the values, value types (clusters of related values) and level of moral reasoning of a sample of 108 MBA students in a Canadian university. There are no statistically significant differences in the levels of moral reasoning attributed to gender. Male and female MBA students rank 'family security' and 'healthy' as their two most important values. For males, hedonism, achievement and self-direction are the three (...) most important value types, while for females they are benevolence, hedonism and security, respectively. There are statistically significant gender differences for the value types hedonism, achievement, stimulation and power. Overall, however, there are more similarities than differences between the male and the female students. Regression analysis indicates a statistically significant positive association between the postconventional level of moral reasoning as measured by P-scores and the value-type universalism. The findings provide further evidence that value types affect the postconventional level of moral reasoning. (shrink)
This study examines values and value types as well as scores in levels of moral reasoning for␣students enrolled in a business program. These two factors are measured using the Schwartz Personal Values␣Questionnaire and the Defining Issues Test 2. No statistically significant differences in levels of moral␣reasoning, rankings of values, and value types could be attributed to gender. However, eight significant correlations between value types and levels of moral reasoning provide evidence that a systematic relationship exists. The relationships are not only (...) internally consistent but also consistent with the model of values based on motivational goals (Schwartz S. H. and K. Boenke: 2004, Journal of Research in Personality, 38 230–255). (shrink)
This study examines values and value types as well as scores in levels of moral reasoning for␣students enrolled in a business program. These two factors are measured using the Schwartz Personal Values␣Questionnaire and the Defining Issues Test 2. No statistically significant differences in levels of moral␣reasoning, rankings of values, and value types could be attributed to gender. However, eight significant correlations between value types and levels of moral reasoning provide evidence that a systematic relationship exists. The relationships are not only (...) internally consistent but also consistent with the model of values based on motivational goals (Schwartz S. H. and K. Boenke: 2004, Journal of Research in Personality , 38 230–255). (shrink)
Belief in propositions has had a long and distinguished history in analytic philosophy. Three of the founding fathers of analytic philosophy, Gottlob Frege, Bertrand Russell, and G. E. Moore, believed in propositions. Many philosophers since then have shared this belief; and the belief is widely, though certainly not universally, accepted among philosophers today. Among contemporary philosophers who believe in propositions, many, and perhaps even most, take them to be structured entities with individuals, properties, and relations as constituents. For example, the (...) proposition that Glenn loves Tracy has Glenn, the loving relation, and Tracy as constituents. What is it, then, that binds these constituents together and imposes structure on them? And if the proposition that Glenn loves Tracy is distinct from the proposition that Tracy loves Glenn yet both have the same constituents, what is about the way these constituents are structured or bound together that makes them two different propositions? In The Nature and Structure of Content, Jeffrey C. King formulates a detailed account of the metaphysical nature of propositions, and provides fresh answers to the above questions. In addition to explaining what it is that binds together the constituents of structured propositions and imposes structure on them, King deals with some of the standard objections to accounts of propositions: he shows that there is no mystery about what propositions are; that given certain minimal assumptions, it follows that they exist; and that on his approach, we can see how and why propositions manage to have truth conditions and represent the world as being a certain way. The Nature and Structure of Content also contains a detailed account of the nature of tense and modality, and provides a solution to the paradox of analysis. Scholars and students working in the philosophy of mind and language will find this book rewarding reading. (shrink)
Orientalism and Religion offers us a timely discussion of the implications of contemporary post-colonial theory for the study of religion. Drawing on a variety of post-structuralist and post-colonial thinkers, including Foucault, Gadamer, Said, and Spivak, Richard King examines the way in which notions such as mysticism, religion, Hinduism and Buddhism are taken for granted, and shows us how religion needs to be redescribed along the lines of cultural studies.
 In twelve quite demanding chapters, outstanding scholars provide an overall view of the key issues of Scotus’s philosophical thought. To this a very concise introduction is added, concerning the life and works of John Duns (very good, especially the survey of works and the information on critical editions etc.). Throughout the book, I find the information clear and the difficult topics well explained. Moreover, the volume gives a quick entrance to the vast literature. Among the topics discussed are: ‘Metaphysics’ (...) (Peter King), ‘Universals and Individuation’ (Timothy Noone), ‘Modal Theory’ (Calvin Normore), ‘Natural Theology’ (James Ross & Todd Bates), ‘Philosophy of Mind’ (Richard Cross), ‘Cognition’ (Robert Pasnau), ‘Moral Dispositions’ (Bonnie Kent). What strikes the eye is the absence of important theological subjects: Trinity, Christology, sin and grace, to name a few. Since the cover text promises that ‘the essays in this volume systematically survey the full range of Scotus’ thought’, this omission is remarkable. It stems, I guess, from the strict philosophical scope of the series of the Cambridge Companions, but such a limitation should have been recognised explicitly: this companion provides, in fact, an introduction to John Duns’s philosophy—i.e., philosophy in our modern sense. Of course, this separation of philosophical from theological thought is not from Scotus. Most of his innovative ‘philosophical’ ideas are developed in a profoundly theological context! (shrink)
This excerpt from Kenneth Kings essay, The Dancing Philosopher, traces its genesis from Nietzsches Thus Spoke Zarathustra (a work that greatly impacted Isadora Duncans founding of modern dance) that, in tandem with the emerging technology of the writing machine (typewriter), camera and kinetoscope (cinematography), conjoined the kinetropic and lexigraphemic to inaugurate the kinetic cogito. Maurice Merleau-Pontys phenomenological exposition of corporeality further amplified the reflexive potential of movement and the philosophical understanding of kinesthesia, and King cites as well the (...) technosophic synergy of John Cages and Merce Cunninghams long artistic collaboration that furthered the frontier of a mind-body epistemic. (shrink)
This essay supplies an historical review of black thought (from the Civil War forward) in the American South. Its emphasis is upon the biography of figures born in the region, whether resident or exile, concentrating on three foundational actors: Booker Washington, Frederick Douglass and Ida Wells. Significant strands of later thought are seen as largely derived from the latter two. The thematic anchor of this review is ?resistance and nonviolence?, involving (1) a primary focus on equal rights, (2) a derivative (...) focus on emancipation and desegregation, (3) exploration of nonviolence as a mode of resistance to oppression, (4) exploration of liberative violence, and (5) a larger concern with the appropriate type and degree of integration/separation implicit in or consistent with an equal rights regime. Douglass and Wells are cast as attending to sub?themes (1) and (2). This essay is designed to fit within the larger framework of the collection, in which the religious leaders Howard Thurman and Martin King are allocated to sub?theme (3), the novelist Richard Wright to (4), and the lawyers Thurgood Marshall, Barbara Jordan and Fred Gray to (5). The future challenge to black thought is assumed to lie in deeper reflection on (5), with a view to locating an ever more perfect balance between ?nation? (the ethnic community of Afro?America) and ?state? (the US federal government). (shrink)
The SRL (speciate re-entrant logic) of King (1989) is a sound, complete and decidable logic designed specifically to support formalisms for the HPSG (head-driven phrase structure grammar) of Pollard and Sag (1994). The SRL notion of modellability in a signature is particularly important for HPSG, and the present paper modifies an elegant method due to Blackburn and Spaan (1993) in order to prove that – modellability in each computable signature is 1 0 – modellability in some finite signature (...) is 1 0 -hard (hence not decidable), and – modellability in some finite signature is decidable. (shrink)
Through the critical examination of Baudrillard's concept of hyperreality, this article seeks to make a wider contribution to contempor ary debates about postmodernism. It draws on a post-Cartesian, Heideg gerian philosophy to demonstrate the weakness of the concept of hyperreality and reveal its foundation in a Cartesian epistemology. The article goes on to claim that this same Heideggerian tradition suggests a way in which the concept of hyperreality and nihilistic postmodern sociologies more generally might be dialectically superseded. Instead of these (...) theories being seen as saying anything insightful about recent social transformations, the epistemological void in which they position themselves should be inter preted as the intellectual expression of the wider cultural and postmodern trend of transgression. Key Words: Baudrillard Cartesianism Heidegger hyperreality postmodernism. (shrink)
Academic discussion of pornography is generally restricted to issues arising from the depiction of adults. I argue that child-pornography is a more complex matter, and that generally accepted moral judgements concerning pornography in general have to be revised when children are involved. I look at the question of harm to the children involved, the consumers, and society in general, at the question of blame, and at the possibility of a morally acceptable form of child-pornography. My approach involves an objectivist meta-ethics (...) and a utilitarian view of practical ethics, and I bring out the advantages of these theories to the consideration of moral issues such as this one. (shrink)
Contemporary Western culture is experiencing a heightened awareness of religious diversity. This article surveys a range of possible responses to such diversity, and distinguishes between responses that concern the salvation or moral transformation of persons (soteriological views) and those that concern the alethic or epistemic status of religious beliefs (doctrinal views). After providing a brief taxonomy of these positions and their possible relations to one another, the article focuses primarily on competing views about the truth and rationality of religious beliefs (...) (e.g., pluralism, exclusivism, and skepticism). Here a heavy emphasis is placed on arguments for and against the rationality and moral propriety of retaining one's religious beliefs in the face of disagreement. The article surveys some of the more prominent arguments from the literature on this topic and closes with suggestions for further research. (shrink)
There are two strands in Bourdieu's sociological writings. On the one hand, Bourdieu argues for a theoretical position one might term his "practical theory" which emphasizes virtuosic interactions between individuals. On the other hand, and most frequently, Bourdieu appeals to the concept of the habitus according to which society consists of objective structures and determined-and isolated-individuals. Although Bourdieu believes that the habitus is compatible with his practical theory and overcomes the impasse of objectivism and subjectivism in social theory, neither claim (...) is the case; the habitus is incompatible with his practical theory, and it retreats quickly into objectivism. However, Bourdieu's practical theory does offer a way out of the impasse of objectivism and subjectivism by focussing on the intersubjective interactions between individuals. (shrink)
Robert Stalnaker is an actualist who holds that merely possible worlds are uninstantiated properties that might have been instantiated. Stalnaker also holds that there are no metaphysically impossible worlds: uninstantiated properties that couldn't have been instantiated. These views motivate Stalnaker's "two dimensional" account of the necessary a posteriori on which there is no single proposition that is both necessary and a posteriori. For a (metaphysically) necessary proposition is true in all (metaphysically) possible worlds. If there were necessary a posteriori propositions, (...) that would mean that there were propositions true in all possible worlds but which could only be known to be true by acquiring empirical evidence. Consider such a purported proposition P. The role of empirical evidence for establishing P's truth would have to be to rule out worlds in which P is false. If there were no such worlds to be ruled out, we would not require evidence for P. But by hypothesis, P is necessary and so true in all metaphysically possible worlds. And on Stalnaker's view, the metaphysically possible worlds are all the worlds there are. So there can be no proposition that is true in all possible worlds, but that we require evidence to know. In this way, the motivation for Stalnaker's two dimensional account of the necessary a posteriori rests on his denying that there are metaphysically impossible Worlds. I argue that given his view of what possible worlds are, Stalnaker has no principled reason for denying that there are metaphysically impossible worlds. If I am right, this undercuts Stalnaker's motivation for his two dimensional account of the necessary a posteriori. (shrink)
Aristotle was the first thinker to devise a logical system. He drew upon the emphasis on universal definition found in Socrates, the use of reductio ad absurdum in Zeno of Elea, claims about propositional structure and negation in Parmenides and Plato, and the body of argumentative techniques found in legal reasoning and geometrical proof. Yet the theory presented in Aristotle’s five treatises known as the Organon—the Categories, the De interpretatione, the Prior Analytics, the Posterior Analytics, and the Sophistical Refutations—goes far (...) beyond any of these. (shrink)
Socrates, for example, has an essence that includes more than his human nature, which is his specific essence; he has an essence proper to himself alone, an essence that cannot be had by anyone else. Although Socrates does have singular (individualized) forms, his singular essence is not a form—there is no form Socrateity for the singular essence parallelling the form humanity for the specific essence. Instead, Socrates has his singular essence in consequence of being an individual, that is, in consequence (...) of having an ‘individual differentia’. Scotus further rejects the distinction between identity and individuality, maintaining that what it is for Socrates to be Socrates is the same as what it is for him to be an individual. Socrates, in the end, is his singular essence. (shrink)
In recent years we have seen a dramatic shift, in several different areas of communication studies, from an information-theoretic to a dynamic systems paradigm. In an information processing system, communication, whether between cells, mammals, apes, or humans, is said to occur when one organism encodes information into a signal that is transmitted to another organism that decodes the signal. In a dynamic system, all of the elements are continuously interacting with and changing in respect to one another, and an aggregate (...) pattern emerges from this mutual co-action. Whereas the information-processing paradigm looks at communication as a linear, binary sequence of events, the dynamic systems paradigm looks at the relation between behaviors and how the whole configuration changes over time. One of the most dramatic examples of the significance of shifting from an information processing to a dynamic systems paradigm can be found in the debate over the interpretation of recent advances in ape language research (ALR). To some extent, many of the early ALR studies reinforced the stereotype that animal communication is functional and stimulus bound, precisely because they were based on an information-processing paradigm that promoted a static model of communicative development. But Savage-Rumbaugh's recent results with bonobos has introduced an entirely new dimension into this debate. Shifting the terms of the discussion from an information-processing to a dynamic systems paradigm not only highlights the striking differences between Savage-Rumbaugh's research and earlier ALR studies, but further, it sheds illuminating light on the factors that underpin the development of communication skills in great apes and humans, and the relationship between communicative development and the development of language. Key Words: apes; ape language research (ALR); brain development; co-regulation; communication; dynamic systems; language development; symbols. (shrink)
One answer: Because medieval philosophy is just the continuation of ancient philosophy by other means—the Latin language and the Catholic Church— and, as Wallace Matson pointed out some time ago, the mind-body problem isn’t ancient.
Followers of Wittgenstein allegedly once held that a meaningful claim to know that p could only be made if there was some doubt about the truth of p. The correct response to this thesis involved appealing to the distinction between the semantic content of a sentence and features attaching (merely) to its use. It is inappropriate to assert a knowledge-claim unless someone in the audience has doubt about what the speaker claims to know. But this fact has nothing to do (...) with the semantic content of knowledgeascriptions; it is entirely explicable by appeal to pragmatic facts about felicitous assertion (that is, a kind of use of a sentence). (shrink)
Harman and Lewis credit Kripke with having formulated a puzzle that seems to show that knowledge entails dogmatism. The puzzle is widely regarded as having been solved. In this paper we argue that this standard solution, in its various versions, addresses only a limited aspect of the puzzle and holds no promise of fully resolving it. Analyzing this failure and the proper rendering of the puzzle, it is suggested that it poses a significant challenge for the defense of epistemic closure.
Wilfrid Sellars, in his essay “Being and Being Known,”1 sets out to explore “the profound truth contained in the Thomistic thesis that the senses in their way and the intellect in its way are informed by the natures of external objects and events” [§1]. Profound truth there may be, but Sellars also finds a profound error in the mediæval treatment of the intentionality of sensing on a par with the intentionality of thinking: There are many reasons for the plausibility of (...) the idea that sense belongs to the intentional order. . . It is primarily due, however, to the fact that sensations have what I shall call a pseudo-intentionality which is easily mistaken for the genuine intentionality of the cognitive order. [§18] Sellars argues that thought is genuinely intentional, for it is (in good linguistic fashion) about the world, whereas sense merely seems to be about the world but in fact is not, although it is systematically correlated with the world—the ‘pseudo-intentionality’ he alludes to here. On Sellars’s reading, the ‘Thomistic’ view gets certain things right that the later Cartesian view gets wrong, such as distinguishing mental acts intrinsically rather than by their ‘content’, but it also gets some things wrong in its own right, notably in its claim that sensing has “genuine intentionality” the way thinking does, and so to take sensing as properly belonging to “the cognitive order” (i. e. to qualify as a kind of knowledge strictly speaking). Sellars is out to right the Thomistic wrongs, beginning with intentionality, where the mistake is easily made. For Sellars has his eye not only on intentionality, but on the consequent claim that episodes of (intentional) sensing play a foundationalist epistemological role, a view he elsewhere famously calls ‘The Myth of the Given’.2 There is no question that Sellars wants to make room for his own brand of social epistemology; his agenda is not historical but systematic. Yet in “Being and Being Known,” Sellars puts his case in historical rather than systematic terms.. (shrink)
possible, your investigation is unlikely ever to get off the ground), there’s no such excuse for philosophers. The philosopher should be unrestricted by fashions in thought, including the unquestioning acceptance of whatever scientific theories are currently dominant. The fact is, however, that in this field and in the philosophy of mind, many.
It is argued that taken together, two widely held claims ((i) sentences express structured propositions whose structures are functions of the structures of sentences expressing them; and (ii) senteces have underlying structures that are the input to semantic interpretation) suggest a simple, plausible theory of propositional structure. According to this theory, the structures of propositions are the same as the structures of the syntactic inputs to semantics they are expressed by. The theory is defended against a variety of objections.
stance, Scotus adopts Anselm’s notion of a ‘(pure) perfection’ and elevates it to a fundamental principle of his metaphysics. Again, he distills Anselm’s Ontological Argument into something like its original Monologion components, and then treats each component part of the argument with a rigor and attention to detail far beyond anything Anselm suggested. In the case of Anselm’s so-called ‘two-wills’ theory, however, Scotus’s revisions are so extensive that they amount to a rejection of Anselm’s account, even though Scotus retains some (...) of Anselm’s terminology. I’ll begin by looking at Anselm’s initial presentation of the two-wills theory in his De casu diaboli (§1), and his later refinements of that account in his De concordia (§2). I’ll then look at Scotus’s deployment, revision, and rejection of Anselm’s theory in his three discussions of angelic sin: Lect. 2 d. 6 q. 2 (§3), Ord. 2 d. 6 q. 2 (§4), and Rep. 2 d. 6 q. 2 (§5). This will be followed by a brief look at whether Scotus’s theory of the self-regulating will is an adequate replacement for Anselm’s account (§6). (shrink)
Timothy Williamson has famously argued that the (KK) principle (roughly, that if one knows that p, then one knows that one knows that p) should be rejected. We analyze Williamson’s argument and show that its key premise is ambiguous, and that when it is properly stated this premise no longer supports the argument against (KK). After canvassing possible objections to our argument, we reflect upon some conclusions that suggest significant epistemological ramifications pertaining to the acquisition of knowledge from prior knowledge (...) by deduction. (shrink)
result from combining the determiners `this' or `that' with syntactically simple or complex common noun phrases such as `woman' or `woman who is taking her skis off'. Thus, `this woman', and `that woman who is taking her skis off' are complex demonstratives. There are also plural complex demonstratives such as `these skis' and `those snowboarders smoking by the gondola'. My book Complex Demonstratives: A Quantificational Account argues against what I call the direct reference account of complex demonstratives (henceforth DRCD) and (...) defends a quantificational account of complex demonstratives. In two recent papers, Nathan Salmon has criticized one of the book's arguments against DRCD. In this essay I show that Salmon's criticism fails. I also show that the version of DRCD that Salmon ends up endorsing is false. (shrink)
Over the last three decades, social theory has become an increasingly important sub-discipline within sociology. Social theory has attempted to elucidate the philosophical basis of sociology by defining the nature of social reality. According to social theory, society consists of objective institutions, structure, on the one hand, and individuals, agency on the other it promotes human social relations, insisting that in every instance social reality consists of these relations. The book begins by defining and criticizing contemporary social theory. It analyses (...) the work of Giddens, Bourdieu, Foucault, Bhaskar and Habermas to demonstrate that their commitment to structure and agency is unsustainable. The book then proceeds to recover a sociology which focuses on social relations by reference to the works of classical sociology; to Hegel, Marx, Weber and Durkheim. Finally, the book establishes a new 'hermeneutic' paradigm in which social relations are primary. The author argues that sociologists studying the dramatic social transformations which are currently occurring should focus on social relations between humans; they should not attempt to understand contemporary changes in terms of structure and agency. (shrink)
In the ﬁrst volume of Capital, Marx introduces a labor theory of value. The theory is supposed to form the basis of his “laying bare” the “inner workings” of capitalism. The theory rests on two claims, and at the outset Marx uses it to explain four features of capitalist production. Yet by the end of the ﬁnal volume of Capital, he abandons both claims and oﬀers alternative accounts of all four features of capitalism. We hold that Marx’s introduction of the (...) labor theory of value is not the presentation of an alternative economic theory, but serves to introduce his analysis of the class structure of capitalism. (shrink)
In this paper I discuss the topics of mechanism and algorithmicity. I emphasise that a characterisation of algorithmicity such as the Turing machine is iterative; and I argue that if the human mind can solve problems that no Turing machine can, the mind must depend on some non-iterative principle — in fact, Cantor's second principle of generation, a principle of the actual infinite rather than the potential infinite of Turing machines. But as there has been theorisation that all physical systems (...) can be represented by Turing machines, I investigate claims that seem to contradict this: specifically, claims that there are noncomputable phenomena. One conclusion I reach is that if it is believed that the human mind is more than a Turing machine, a belief in a kind of Cartesian dualist gulf between the mental and the physical is concomitant. (shrink)
This article contends that Socratic wisdom (sophia) in Plato's Apology should be understood in relation to moderation (sophrosune), not knowledge (episteme). This stance is exemplified in an interpretation of Socrates' disavowal of knowledge. The god calls Socrates wise. Socrates holds both that he is wise in nothing great or small and that the god does not lie. These apparently inconsistent claims are resolved in an interpretation of elenchus. This interpretion says that Socrates is wise insofar as he does not believe (...) himself to know what he does not know. Whether one knows is demonstrated through elenchus, which moderates between knowledge claims. Thus, elenchus is productive of a kind of wisdom even if it does not produce knowledge. This claim, if true, forms a suitable basis for Socrates' defense of himself. That it does so serves as further evidence for the interpretation of sophia as sophrosune. (shrink)
No single theory of the emotions dominates the whole of the Middle Ages. Instead, there are several competing accounts, and differences of opinion — sometimes quite dramatic — within each account. Yet there is consensus on the scope and nature of a theory of the emotions, as well as on its place in affective psychology generally. For most medieval thinkers, emotions are at once cognitively penetrable and somatic, which is to say that emotions are influenced by and vary with changes (...) in thought and belief, and that they are also bound up, perhaps essentially, with their physiological manifestations. This ‘mixed’ conception of emotions was broad enough to anchor medieval disagreements over details, yet rich enough to distinguish it from other parts of psychology and medicine. In particular, two kinds of phenomena, thought to be purely physiological, were not considered emotions even on this broad conception. First, what we now classify as drives or urges, for instance hunger and sexual arousal, were thought in the Middle Ages to be at best ‘pre-emotions’ fpropayyioney): mere biological motivations for action, not having any intrinsic cognitive object. Second, moods were likewise thought to be non-objectual somatic states, completely explicable as an imbalance of the bodily humours. Depression fmelancholia), for example, is the pathological condition of having an excess of black bile. Medieval theories of emotions, therefore, concentrate on paradigm cases that fall under the broad conception: delight, anger, distress, fear, and the like. The enterprise of constructing an adequate philosophical theory of the emotions in the Middle Ages had its counterpart in a large body of practical know-how. The medical literature on the emotions, for instance, was extensive, covering such subjects as the causal role of emotions in disease and recovery, the nerves as connecting the brain to the organs involved in the physiological manifestations of the emotions, and the effect of diet and nutrition on emotional responses.. (shrink)
Previous studies investigating reports of corporate or individual wrongdoing have failed to examine the effects of an organization's structure upon the decision to blow the whistle. This paper suggests that an organization's structure may perform a significant role in the decision to report versus not report an observed wrongdoing. Five organizational structures (that is, centralized, matrix, horizontal, hybrid, and divisional) were examined in regards to their effectiveness in encouraging or discouraging observers of unethical conduct channels for reporting such behavior. Discussion (...) and implications are provided. (shrink)
In “Complex Demonstratives: A Quantificational Account” (MIT Press 2001) (henceforth CD), I argued that complex demonstratives are quantifiers. Many philosophers had held that demonstratives, both simple and complex, are referring terms. Since the publication of CD various objections to the account of complex demonstratives I defended in it have been raised. In the present work, I lay out these objections and respond to them.
Lewis makes a strong case for the interdependence and integration of emotion and cognitive processes. Yet, these processes exhibit considerable independence in early life, as well as in certain psychopathological conditions, suggesting that the capacity for their integration emerges as a function of development. In some circumstances, the concept of highly interactive emotion and cognitive systems seems a viable alternative hypothesis to the idea of systems integration.
Ontogeny, specifically the role of language in the human family now and in prehistory, is central to Locke & Bogin's (L&B's) thesis in a compelling way. The unique life-history stages of childhood and adolescence, however, must be interpreted not only against an exceptionally “high quality” human infancy but also in light of the evolution of co-constructed, emotionally based communication in ape, hominid, and human infancy.
I frequently have trouble with words that other people use with what seems to be blithe understanding (friends tell me that the problem is that I think too much about words, but I find that not thinking doesn't really seem to help). In the case of `tolerance', though, I have no trouble at all - it's a wishy-washy weasel, a mealy-mouthed mink of a word. I suppose I don't want to claim that it has no decent place in the language (...) at all. I'm not particularly worried, for example, about our tolerating bad dramatic or musical performances by friends, close relatives, or children, nor about our tolerating the short tempers of those under great stress, and so on. What concerns me is the notion of tolerance that is so often to be found floating in the nebulous rhetoric of morality, both public and private. (shrink)
cause other than the very individual itself, and thus there is no ‘metaphysical’ problem of individuation at all—individuality, unlike generality, is primitive and needs no explanation. He supports this view in two ways. First, he argues that there are no nonindividual entities, whether existing in their own right or as metaphysical constituents either of things or in things, and hence that no real principle or cause of individuality (other than the individual itself) is required. Second, he oﬀers a ‘semantic’ interpretation (...) of what appear to be metaphysical diﬃculties about individuality by recasting the issues in the formal mode, as issues within semantics, such as how a referring expression can pick out a single individual. Yet although there is no ‘metaphysical’ problem of individuation, Buridan discusses two associated problems at some length: the identity of individuals over time and the discernibility of individuals. (shrink)
In his recent review of my book, The Structure of Social Theory , Karsten Stueber rejected my criticisms of contemporary social theory. Against my "hermeneutic" sociology which prioritizes human social relations, he advocates a return to a dualistic ontology of structure and agency. This reply addresses Stuebers criticisms to re-affirm the ontology of social relations against ontological dualism. Key Words: structure agency hermeneutics social relations.
Some years ago I reviewed a collection of papers called African Philosophy: The Essential Readings , edited by Serequeberhan. My last comment in that review was the expression of the hope for collections of papers that would give an insight into what's going on in African philosophy, rather than into the debate over the existence and nature of African philosophy. My concern is echoed by the last line of a letter printed in the present volume of readings: "Hitherto most of (...) us have been talking about African philosophy, instead of doing African philosophy." (p.xlii) So when I received this book for review, I naturally hoped that it was what I'd been waiting for. I'm afraid that it isn't. (shrink)
The Doctrine of Original Sin seems to require that human nature has literally undergone a change from its prelapsarian to its postlapsarian condition.It is not clear that this claim makes sense. How can human nature, the feature(s) in virtue of which human beings are what they are, change in time? (Think of the parallel claim about √2.) I consider three medieval attempts to resolve this problem: (1) Augustine’s two theories about shared human nature; (2) Anselm’s proposal that original sin is (...) an individual deficiency; (3) the “biological” proposal suggested by Odo of Cambrai and developed by Pseudo-Joscelin. (shrink)
In this recent history of British sociology, Andrew Halsey suggests an intriguing connection between political economic régimes in the twentieth century and the development of sociology as an academic discipline, dividing British sociology into four periods, 1900-1950, 1950-1967, 1968-1975, and 1975-2000. In this way, by connecting disciplinary developments with contemporaneous régimes of economic regulation, Halsey begins to outline a sociology of sociology. However, although much of Halsey's book is informative, especially his description of the period from 1950-1967 when he personally (...) entered the discipline, Halsey ultimately fails to develop his sociology of the discipline sufficiently, especially after 1967. Although it does not claim to be comprehensive, this essay attempts to develop Halsey's sociology of the discipline. Key Words: British sociology social theory twentieth century. (shrink)
Augustine and Anselm, Abelard was not concerned to explore the theological dimension of the mental Word. Instead, Abelard crafted a ‘language of thought’ to provide the semantics for ordinary languages, based on the idea that thoughts (intellectus) have linguistic character. His is the most sophisticated account of Mental Language until the efforts of Burleigh, Ockham, Buridan, and others at the start of the fourteenth century. Yet unlike these later versions, Abelard’s theory of Mental Language has not received the attention it (...) deserves.1 Most commentators have touched on only three aspects of Abelard’s theory of Mental Language, and that typically as an adjunct to his discussion of the problem of universals: the mechanics of acquiring understandings, the nature of mental content, and the production of one understanding from another (e. g. by abstraction).2 Important as these are for Abelard’s philosophy of mind, they are only a small part of the story for his account of Mental Language. Here I shall concentrate instead on Abelard’s insight that thoughts have linguistic character. To clarify this insight we first have to describe Abelard’s semantic framework (§1), connecting language and thought. According to Abelard, Mental Language generally obeys a principle of compositionality, so that the meaning of a whole is a function of the meaning of its parts — an idea that Abelard applies to words and expressions3 by describing the psychological realities underlying the semantics (§2). Once.. (shrink)
Hunting is a complex phenomenon. l examine it from four different perspectives-animal liberation, the land ethic, primitivism, and ecofeminism-and find no moral justification for sport hunting in any of them. At the same time, however, I argue that there are theoretical flaws in each of these approaches. Animal liberationists focus too much on the individual animal and ignore the difference between domestic and wild animals. Leopold’s land ethic fails to come to terms with the self-domestication of humans. I argue that (...) the holism of the land ethic does not in itself justify hunting as a human act of predation appropriate to the demands of wild biotic communities. Primitivists, such as Paul Shepard and Ortega y Gasset, mistakenly argue that hunting is an essential part of human nature and hence part of a healthy return to a natural way of life. Their argument marginalizes women’s relations to nature. Finally, I take seriously the ecofeminist claim that sport hunting is a symptom ofpatriarchy’s fixation on death and violence, although I criticize the more radical claim that women are closer to nature than men. Hunting should be investigated within the broader context of patriarchal social relations between men and women. As an act of violence it constitutes one element of a cultural matrix which is destructive to hoth women and nature. (shrink)
In one corner Socrates; in the other, on the mat, his cat Felix. Socrates, of course, thinks (correctly) that Felix the Cat is on the mat. But there’s the rub. For Socrates to think that Felix is on the mat, he has to be able to think about Felix, that is, he has to have some sort of cognitive grasp of an individual — and not just any individual, but Felix himself. How is that possible? What is going on when (...) we think about things? (shrink)
For a biological anthropologist interested in the prehistory of religion, J. Wentzel van Huyssteen's book is welcome and resonant. Van Huyssteen's central thesis is that humans' capacity for spirituality emerges from a transformation of cognition and emotions that takes place in the symbolic realm, within Homo sapiens and apart from biology. To his thesis I bring to bear three areas of response: the abundant cognitive and emotional capacities of living apes and extinct hominids; the role of symbolic ritual in the (...) evolutionary history of Homo sapiens; and the closely intertwined nature of biology and culture in the workings of evolutionary change. (shrink)
The concept of structure is central to Giddens's structuration theory because it apparently accounts for the reproduction of the social system without derogating the lay actor in functionalist or structuralist fashion. In fact, the concept of structure involves the very derogation of the lay actor which Giddens highlights as the principal error of these objectivist social theories and which he wishes to avoid. However, although Giddens fails to recognize it, the concept of "practical consciousness" which Giddens also regards as central (...) to structuration theory avoids this relapse into objectivism and offers a route to a sustainable social theory which highlights the agency of social actors. Key Words: structuration theory practical consciousness structure hermeneutics. (shrink)
Mox de generibus et speciebus illud quidem siue subsistant siue in solis nudis purisque intellectibus posita sint siue ipsa subsistentia sint corporalia an incorporalia, et utrum separata an in sensibilibus et circa ea constantia, dicere recusabo. As regards genera and species, for the present I shall refuse to say whether they subsist or are postulated in understandings that are alone and bare and pure; or whether, if they subsist, they are corporeal or incorporeal; and whether they are separated from sensibles (...) or are postulated in sensibles and things going along with them. Abelard acknowledges the tradition but wants no part of it. (shrink)
Peter Abelard (1079 – 21 April 1142) [‘Abailard’ or ‘Abaelard’ or ‘Habalaarz’ and so on] was the pre-eminent philosopher and theologian of the twelfth century. The teacher of his generation, he was also famous as a poet and a musician. Prior to the recovery of Aristotle, he brought the native Latin tradition in philosophy to its highest pitch. His genius was evident in all he did. He is, arguably, the greatest logician of the Middle Ages and is equally famous as (...) the first great nominalist philosopher. He championed the use of reason in matters of faith (he was the first to use ‘theology’ in its modern sense), and his systematic treatment of religious doctrines are as remarkable for their philosophical penetration and subtlety as they are for their audacity. Abelard seemed larger than life to his contemporaries: his quick wit, sharp tongue, perfect memory, and boundless arrogance made him unbeatable in debate — he was said by supporter and detractor alike never to have lost an argument — and the force of his personality impressed itself vividly on all with whom he came into contact. His luckless affair with Héloïse made him a tragic figure of romance, and his conflict with Bernard of Clairvaux over reason and religion made him the hero of the Enlightenment. For all his colourful life, though, his philosophical achievements are the cornerstone of his fame. (shrink)
He began his negative case by attacking platonist theories, that is, theories identifying the universal as a separated form really distinct from the individuals it characterizes.3 His next target was so-called moderate realist theories, which identify the universal as a form that is really distinct but not separate from the individuals it characterizes.4 Finally, he turns to Scotist theories, which identify the universal as a form that is only formally distinct from the individuals it characterizes, neither really distinct nor separable (...) from them.5 Buridan’s discussion therefore follows a pattern similar to that found in William of Ockham, where the arguments against.. (shrink)
This essay articulates the importance of the domesticated landscape for a mature environmental ethics. Human beings are spatial beings, deeply implicated in their relationships to places, both wild and domesticated. Human identity evolves contextually through interaction with a "world." If this world obscures our perception of wild nature, it will be difficult to motivate the social and psychological will to imagine, let alone participate in, a culture that values environmentally responsible conduct. My argument is informed by a pragmatist suspicion of (...) fixed dualisms separating humans from nature, the wild from the domesticated, and the natural from the artificial. Drawing on a variety of sources, the essay calls for greater attention to the ways in which the making of our domesticated worlds can contribute to or undermine our ability to take the intrinsic value of nature seriously. (shrink)
I was born in Boston, Lincolnshire (actually in Wyberton West Hospital, which no longer exists), educated (if that's the word) first at St Mary's Primary School (run by nuns at the time, which probably explains a lot about my later career if you're a Freudian, which I'm not. Its new incarnation is here), then at Boston Grammar School . At the latter I successfully navigated 'O'-levels, but nearly half-way through my 'A'-levels I developed a number of extra-curricular interests which distracted (...) me from my studies. More importantly, I began to think rather more broadly than some of my teachers (and especially my appalling headmaster) cared for. This led to an almost total cessation of interest in my 'A'-levels. It did, however, involve a number of stage rôles at Blackfriars Theatre and elsewhere, and a good deal of time spent in the theatre bar. (shrink)
Being able to effectively respond in the event a crisis is relevant to an organization''s survival. Whether or not an organization is prepared for a potential crisis depends upon senior officials, and other personnel operating within the company. Corporations with established crisis management teams are able to communicate and effectively respond in the event of a crisis. The purpose of this paper is to suggest effective crisis management depends upon several team-related factors that may influence an organization''s response and its (...) ethical responsibility. First, the term crisis is defined, followed by an overview of the differences between crisis communication and crisis management. Second, a review of relevant literature regarding teams and effectiveness is examined. Third, several propositions regarding team effectiveness and crisis management are provided. Finally, ethical concerns in regards to the crisis team and the corporation are reviewed. (shrink)
Three general types of problems entail different strategies. Continuing to seek solutions to tame problems when we face messes, let alone wicked problems, is potentially catastrophic hence fundamentally irresponsible. In our turbulent times, it is therefore becoming a strategic necessity to learn how to solve the right problems. Successful problem solving requires finding the right solution to the right problem. We fail more often because we solve the wrong problem than because we get the wrong solution to the right problem. (...) Russell Ackoff (1974). But then, you may agree that it becomes morally objectionable for the planner to treat a wicked problem as though it were a tame one, or to tame a wicked problem prematurely, or to refuse to recognize the inherent wickedness of social problems. Rittel and Webber (1973). (shrink)
Assume that the only thing before you is a statue made of some alloy. Call those who think that there is one thing before you in such a case monists. Call those who think there are at least two things before you in such a case pluralists. The most common arguments for pluralism run as follows. The statue is claimed to have some property P that the piece of alloy lacks (or vice versa), and hence it is concluded that they (...) are distinct. Most often, the predicates employed in such arguments to express the crucial property are predicates expressing ‘temporal properties’, such as existing at a certain time; or ‘modal properties’, such as possibly being spherical; or ‘constitution properties’, such as being made of a certain sort of material. In a recent paper, Kit Fine has noted that such predicates suffer from various defects that make it possible for the monist to plausibly resist the relevant versions of the pluralist's arguments. For this reason, Fine considers a number of predicates that do not suffer from these defects, and constructs new versions of the above argument using them. Fine argues that any attempt on the monist's part to resist his versions of the argument force the monist to adopt implausible positions in the philosophy of language. As against this, I argue that the monist has perfectly plausible responses to Fine's arguments that require the monist to adopt only quite reasonable positions in the philosophy of language. (shrink)
In his commentary on Aristotle’s Peri hermeneias,1 Abelard distinguishes the form of an expression2 (oratio) from what it says, that is, its content. The content of an expression is its understanding (intellectus). This distinction is surely the most well-known and central idea in Abelard’s commentary. It provides him with the opportunity to distinguish statements (enuntiationes) from other kinds of expressions without implying a diference in their content, since the ability of a statement to signify something true or false (verum vel (...) falsum)3 cannot be found in its content. More precisely, Abelard distinguishes statements both from complete expressions (orationes perfectae) that are not statements but rather questions, requests, commands, etc. and from incomplete expressions, that is, mere word strings (orationes imperfectae), such as homo albus. These kinds of expressions, according to Abelard, do not differ in the understanding they present but in the way they present it. (shrink)
Herbert Spencer was the most influential Anglophone sociologist of the nineteenth century, but his contributions are now largely forgotten. It is argued, however, that the clarity of his understanding of the use of biological metaphors in sociology gives his work a power which is worth rediscovering. This proposition is pursued through a discussion of his treatment of the professions and their role in industrial societies. His approach is compared with the "ecological" perspective of sociologists in the Chicago tradition, notably Andrew (...) Abbott. It is suggested that Spencer's work rests on an alternative interpretation of the ecological model; this opens the way to an understanding of the regulative structures of "the system of the profession," which fills a major gap in Abbott's account. (shrink)
The two works under review attempt to describe the outlines of a post-positivist social science of the future. Against objectivist approaches, these books emphasize the importance of hermeneutics and the cultural turn to the social sciences. Social sciences must recognize collective understandings and human agency. However, while affirming the importance of an interpretivist approach, both of these works also suggest that objective institutional reality must be recognized by social scientists today. Meaningful human agency and objective structure must be encompassed by (...) the social sciences. To this end, critical realism, originally promoted by Roy Bhaskar, figures prominently in both these books precisely because it is a theory which seems to be able to account for both agency and structure simultaneously. In fact, as both these books sometimes demonstrate, the dualistic approach represented by critical realism is flawed. By contrast, the hermeneutic approach advocated by Keith Topper and by some of the contributors to Steinmetzs collection provides an adequate explanation of institutional social reality in and of itself. Consequently, these books can be interpreted as pointing toward a hermeneutic social science of the future. Key Words: positivism realism hermeneutics structure and agency. (shrink)
Novelists and other producers of fiction can make many mistakes (including becoming novelists and other producers of fiction), but there are three kinds of mistake that stem from the writer's ignorance. First, there's the purely external mistake, which occurs in the..
Martin Hollis (d.1998) was arguably the most incisive, eloquent and witty philosopher of the social sciences of his time. His work is appreciated and contested here by some of the most eminent of contemporary social theorists. Hollis's philosophy of social action, routinely distinguished between understanding (rational) and explanation (causal). He argued that the aptest account of human interaction was to be made in terms of the first. Thus he focused upon the human reasons, for, rather than upon the natural causes (...) of, action. This volume, for the first time, brings together important essays on the work of Hollis, from many different perspectives. These include politics, sociology and economics in general; international relations, rational choice theory, constitutionalism and the rule of law as well as current concerns with relativism, Rousseauist contractarianism, "dirty hands" and "buck-passing". (shrink)
The present survey was voluntarily and anonymously completed by 2,196 students enrolled in business courses at the University of Southern Mississippi. The intent of the survey was to determine whether or not age or gender played a role in a person''s perception of proper ethical conduct.The findings suggests that gender is a significant factor in the determination of ethical conduct and that females are more ethical than males in their perception of business ethical situations.
The present study takes Confucian entrepreneurs as an entry point to portray the dynamics and problems involved in the process of putting moral precepts into practice, a central issue in business ethics. Confucian entrepreneurs are defined as the owners of manufacturing or business firms who harbor the moral values of Confucianism. Other than a brief account of their historical background, 41 subjects from various parts of Mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur were selected for in-depth interviews. By (...) studying the moral choices they made in the market, it was discovered that, contrary to the prevalent mode of inquiry in economics either to reduce all social phenomena to rational calculations or to consider moral actions in terms of utilitarian values, their economic action cannot be accounted for by the postulate of utility maximization, and that the efforts to do business according to their moral principles can be very costly. The study also attempts to document how these Confucian entrepreneurs reconciled the conflict between the moral values they cherished and the instrumental goals they pursued, and will seek to uncover how they responded when faced with this dilemma. (shrink)
This essay reflects on three strategic visions of how society might develop in the direction of a more environmentally responsible culture. These strategies - green technology, ecocentrism, and civic environmentalism - offer promising elements of what we need. However, each fails in different ways to successfully explain how citizens, caught up in consumerist practices and their supporting belief systems, can be led to take the transformative steps needed to build a culture that engages responsibly and respectfully with the natural environment. (...) This essay aims to acknowledge the contributions of these three approaches, while also critically reflecting on their limitations. The core limitation is the unresolved clash between ecocentrism's focus on the vulnerability of nature's intrinsic value to any anthropogenic intervention and civic environmentalism's focus on the revival of strong civic democracy as a gateway to environmental health. (shrink)
Murray MacBeath, in his essay ``Time's Square'', describes a fictitious scenariowhere various physical observations made by the participants would, he claims, invitethe interpretation that time for them is two-dimensional. In the present paper, however, Iargue that such observations come close to underdetermining the hypothesis of time's twodimensionality;for a rival hypothesis - that, under certain circumstances, the observationscan be explained in terms of the familiar time dilation effects predicted by special relativity- almost fits the evidence as well. That is, under certain (...) (albeit artificial) circumstances theworld can already behave almost as though it were temporally two-dimensional. (shrink)