Martin Heidegger’s radical critique of technology has fundamentally stigmatized modern technology and paved the way for a comprehensive critique of contemporary Western society. However, the following reassessment of Heidegger’s most elaborate and influential interpretation of technology, The Question Concerning Technology, sheds a very different light on his critique. In fact, Heidegger’s phenomenological line of thinking concerning technology also implies a radical critique of ancient technology and the fundamental being-in-the-world of humans. This revision of Heidegger’s arguments claims that The Question Concerning (...) Technology indicates a previous unseen ambiguity with respect to the origin of the rule of das Gestell. The following inquiry departs from Heidegger’s critique of modern technology and connects it to a reassessment of ancient technology and Aristotle’s justification of slavery. The last part of the paper unfolds Heidegger’s underlying arguments in favor of continuity within the history of technology. According to these interpretations, humans have always strived to develop modern technology and to become truly modern in the Heideggerian sense. The danger stemming from the rule of das Gestell is thus not only transient and solely directed toward contemporary Western society, but also I will argue that humans can only be humans as the ones challenged by the rule of das Gestell. (shrink)
The title of this paper might evoke claustrophobic associations. In other words, architecture in a very immediate sense can affect our behavior and feelings. In more mediated ways, architecture is also capable of influencing humans and putting their environment into perspective. Consider, for example, how a penthouse apartment can literally elevate people’s emotions and unfold a new perspective on city life, which some people are willing to pay millions of dollars to attain. In this paper I will explore how architecture (...) frames human experience from a philosophical point of view. My aim is to offer key elements of a new typology of architecture. For that purpose I am going to reflect and expand on key insights into technology of one of the funding fathers of contemporary philosophy of technology, Don Ihde. Through a life time, Ihde has been probing and investigating the relation between humans and their world as it is mediated through technology. In doing so he has concentrated on examining and understanding the role of scientific instruments. This paper is dedicated to showing how Ihde’s significant postphenomenological concepts not only can be translated to another domain and serve a better understanding of architecture, but also how his work can help us to relate to architecture in multiple constructive ways. The succeeding experimental translations of Ihde’s understanding of technology to architecture are also meant as a guide to design more adequate and fascinating built environments. I will begin with a broad overview of Ihde’s postphenomenological project; subsequently I shall endeavor to translate this work onto architecture through a number of case-studies, some of which are detailed and others less so. (shrink)
I would like to thank Prof. Stephen Read ( 2011 ) and Prof. Andrew Benjamin ( 2011 ) for both giving inspiring and elaborate comments on my article “Dwelling in-between walls: the architectural surround”. As I will try to demonstrate below, their two different responses not only supplement my article very nicely, but also augment each other’s. In the beginning of Read’s comment, as he sets the stage for his observations, he unknowingly also points in the direction of Benjamin’s remarks: (...) “I propose not to de-construct therefore, or add a point of view from an orthogonal position, but to try in the spirit of multidisciplinarity to talk in languages not well practiced—to begin to build what Bowker and Star call ‘boundary objects’ between different starting positions; points we can gather around to think further together” (Read 2011 ). Whereas Read facilitates a multidisciplinary dialogue, Benjamin focuses on how the absence of an initial distinction might threaten the endeavour of my paper. In my reply to Read and Benjamin, I will discuss their suggestions and arguments, while at the same time hopefully clarifying the postphenomenological approach to architecture. (shrink)
A survey is undertaken based on qualitative analyses of the cases of scientific misconduct from the Danish Committee on Scientific Dishonesty’s first five years of collecting data, with additional information from selected international sources, in which underlying psychological motivations can be judged.
The volume advances research in the philosophy of technology by introducing contributors who have an acute sense of how to get beyond or reframe the epistemic, ontological and normative limitations that currently limit the fields of philosophy of technology and science and technology studies.
Technology has a history structured by discontinuities. The first important philosophical expression of such a conception of technology was advanced by Walter Benjamin when he defined art works in relation to specific techniques of production. At the present art and architecture occur within an age defined by the move from ’technical reproducibility’ to digital reproducibility. The move has an impact on how technology is understood and its relation to architecture conceived. Adapting Walter Benjamin’s work in this area provides the basis (...) for a response to SorenRiis’ important treatment of the relationship between architecture and technology in his paper “Dwelling in-between walls: the architectural surround”. (shrink)
The theme of reading and relation to the textual production is persistent in works of the Danissh philosopher and theologian of the 19th century Soren Kierkegaard. This, in turn, is closely related to his project of existential communication. One of the decisive qualifications of the project is distance, or distancing between the self and the other. The distance makes it possible for self to reflect upon his/her own existence. Kierkegaard develops this theme in his conception of existential maeutics as (...) opposed to the Socratic one that presupposes closing the gap between interlocutors. Important role in the process of distanciation is played by the text, as well as by specific reading practices, and Kierkegaard metaphorically speaks of the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ modes of reading. The ‘bad’ one means loosing oneself in the text, while the ‘good’ one – retaining some level of integrity of the reader. The distanciation is a theme also in reflections of French phenomenologist Paul Ricoeur, but if for him the distance is a difference within the field of language itself (as text versus discourse), then Kierkegaard takes into account mainly extratextual (ethical, religious and other) aspects, and difference is between text and reader. The present paper gives examples of ‘good’ reading practices employed by Kierkegaard in his Journals and Papers. (shrink)
Bachtin's concept of personality is considered in light of Kierkegaard's philosophy of human existence. Unlike Kierkegaard, who sees the aesthetic concept of the person moving over into an ethical one, Bachtin takes art to be the highest form of the realization of individuality that brings together the opposing tendencies within the ethical sphere (between what is and what must be).
En este articulo se pretende mostrar la idea de Kierkegaard del individuo singular, desde las estructuras de libertad y temporalidad. La libertad entendida no como liberaciön o libre arbitrio, sino como el devenir de la historicidad humana en relaciön a las cosas y la comunidad, de tal forma que el individuo singular en Kierkegaard no es ningün individualista o solipsista, sino que desde ella se puede recuperar la dimension de unidad personal tan anulada por los sucesos actuales de violaciön a (...) los derechos humanos. La temporalidad, se trata como la dimension humana, ontolögica y hermeneutica, donde la sintesis que es el individuo singular se desarrolla, de tal manera que temporalidad y libertad en Kierkegaard son la dimension misma del devenir humano. La libertad se trata en relaciön con la angustia, la desesperaciön y la pasiön de vivir. La temporalidad se diferencia del tiempo, del tiempo abstracto y del instante. El articulo hace una lectura horizontal de las obras pseudönimas de Kierkegaard como: El Concepto de la Angustia, La Enfermedad Mortal, La Alternativa, Temor y Temblor. (shrink)
Sören Stenlund's work marks a major advance in our understanding of why the philosophy of language has been so dominated over the past few decades by the so-called "creative aspect of language" -- the problem of how we are able to understand sentences that we have never heard before. Stenlund raises some fundamental philosophical objections by demonstrating, for example, how the theory distorts the flexibility and fluidity of word -- and sentence -- meaning. Although words and sentences can have a (...) remarkable number of different, sometimes extraordinarily subtle meanings, Stenlund shows how language-users can readily adapt to entirely novel uses of a word or a sentence. Language and Philosophical Problems presents the results of philosophical investigations into several connected issues of current interest within the philosophies of language, logic, mind, and mathematics. In particular it deals with our tendency to be misled by certain prevailing views and preconceptions of language. (shrink)
Hintikka, J. Knowing how, knowing that, and knowing what: observations on their relation in Plato and other Greek philosophers.--Hedenius, I. The concept of punishment.--Marc-Wogau, K. On the concept of dialectial development in Marxism.--Ekelöf, P. O. Definitions and concept formation in the law.--Hermerén, G. The existence of aesthetic qualities.--Regnéll, H. Explanation in analytical philosophy.--Furberg, M. On questions and pseudo-problems.--Moritz, M. Imperative implication and conditional imperatives.--Sosa, E. Standard conditions.--Danielsson, S. On the strength of commitments.--Aqvist, L. The emotive theory of ethics in the (...) light of recent developments in formal semantics and pragmatics.--Von Wright, G. H. Truth as modality. A contribution to the logic of sense and nonsense.--Hansson, B. and Gärdenfors, P. A guide to intentional semantics.--Kanger, S. Entailment.--Edman, M. Adding independent pieces of evidence.--Lindström, P. A characterization of elementary logic.--Woodruff, P. W. On constructive nonsense logic.--Segerberg, K. Halldén's theorem on Post completeness.--Philosophical works by Sören Halldén (p. 210-211). (shrink)
We have become accustomed to the idea that meaning is determined externalistically, that the meaning of certain types of terms, for example natural kind terms, depends on facts about the external environment.1 Recently, however, a more radical thesis has emerged, a thesis we shall dub.
Martin Heidegger's major work, Being and Time, is usually considered the culminating work in a tradition called existential philosophy. The first person to call himself an existential thinker was Soren Kierkegaard, and his influence is clearly evident in Heidegger's thought. Existential thinking rejects the traditional philosophical view, that goes back to Plato at least, that philosophy must be done from a detached, disinterested point of view. Kierkegaard argues that our primary access to reality is through our involved action. The (...) way things show up for a detached thinker is a partial and distorted version of the way things show up to a committed individual. (shrink)
In this rich and resonant work, Soren Kierkegaard reflects poetically and philosophically on the biblical story of God's command to Abraham, that he sacrifice his son Isaac as a test of faith. Was Abraham's proposed action morally and religiously justified or murder? Is there an absolute duty to God? Was Abraham justified in remaining silent? In pondering these questions, Kierkegaard presents faith as a paradox that cannot be understood by reason and conventional morality, and he challenges the universalist ethics (...) and immanental philosophy of modern German idealism, especially as represented by Kant and Hegel. This volume presents the first new English translation for twenty years, by Sylvia Walsh, together with an introduction by C. Stephen Evans which examines the ethical and religious issues raised by the text. (shrink)
A long time ago, I procured a little book edited by Soren Kierkegaard entitled The Sickness Unto Death (1849). What is more, I read it. (I must confess to having been first attracted to it solely by its title). For and as a tribute to Alastair Hannay I was inspired to set down in print this brief (altogether too brief, philosophically speaking) and unsystematic reflection. What struck me most palpably was the suggestion that, although our worldly endeavors and thus (...) our publications are, so to speak, temporally limited, our despair is not. I write on the obligations and privileges of that mood. (shrink)
Melancholy and The Critique of Modernity examines the connections between the emergence of modern society and the experience of melancholy. The idea of "sadness without a cause" has played an important part in human self-understanding throughout the development of Western society. But with the emergence of modernity melancholy has become its most pervasive and significant experience. The affinity between melancholy and modernity is examined through a comprehensive re-examination of the writings of Soren Kierkegaard. The whole range of Kierkegaard's work (...) is set in the context of a social and historical theory of melancholy. From this perspective Kierkegaard emerges as the most important, and the most typical, psychologist of the modern era. Melancholy and The Critique of Modernity makes Kierkegaard's rich and insightful writings accessible to a new audience and establishes him as a central figure for contemporary debates on the nature of modernity. (shrink)
It is widely held that the meaning of certain types of terms, such as natural kind terms, is individuated externalistically, in terms of the individual's external environment. Recently a more radical thesis has emerged, a thesis we dub 'a posteriori semantics.' The suggestion is that not only does a term's meaning depend on the external environment, but so does its semantics. One motivation for this is the aim to account for cases where a putative natural kind term fails to pick (...) out a natural kind: The term may have a standard externalist semantics (if it picks out a natural kind) or a more descriptivist one (if it does not). Knowing which semantics applies will therefore require detailed empirical knowledge. This move has also been employed in cases where a singular term, such as a name, fails to have a reference. We argue that a posteriori semantics is inherently implausible, since the type of semantics common terms should be given ought not to be conditional on details of chemistry or physics. A number of difficulties for the position—'metaphysical,' epistemological, and methodological—are articulated. Finally, we suggest that a posteriori semantics misconstrues the way in which semantics is empirical. (shrink)
Recent debates about thought experiments have focused on a perceived epistemological problem: how do thought experiments manage to provide knowledge when they yield no new empirical data? A bold answer to this question is provided by James Robert Brown’s platonisrn, according to which a certain class of thought experiments allow a sort of intellectual perception of laws of nature, understood as relations between universals. I suggest that there are three main problems with platonism. First, it is restricted to a very (...) small class of thought experiments; hence, it largely fails to address the general epistemological problem. Second, it is not quite clear what it is supposed to explain. Third, its explanatory value in any case seems dubious, since the mechanisms it postulates (i) appear to raise issues more ditficult than what they would explain, and (ii) seem to obviate the very need for conducting thought experiments. I also argue that it fails to give an accurate account of Brown’s flagship example, Galileo’s thought experiment on falling bodies. In conclusion, I suggest that although platonism about thought experiments is an exciting thesis, it is at present unconvincing. (shrink)
Lewis, D. Semantic analyses for dyadic deontic logic.--Salomaa, A. Some remarks concerning many-valued propositional logics.--Chellas, B. F. Conditional obligation.--Jeffrey, R.C. Remarks on interpersonal utility theory.--Hintikka, J. On the proper treatment of quantifiers in Montague semantics.--Mayoh, B.H. Extracting information from logical proofs.--Åqvist, L. A new approach to the logical theory of actions and causality.--Pörn, I. Some basic concepts of action.--Bouvère, K. de. Some remarks concerning logical and ontological theories.--Hacking, I. Combined evidence.--Äberg, C. Solution to a problem raised by Stig Kanger and (...) a set theoretical statement equivalent to the axiom of choice.--Lindström, P. On characterizing elementary logic.--Scott, D. Rules and derived rules.--Hansson, B. A program for pragmatics.--Hermerén, G. Models.--Fenstad, J.E. Remarks on logic and probability.--Stenlund, S. Analytic and synthetic arithmetical statements. (shrink)
The story of the Aquedah represents one of the most moving stories of the Bible. Most modern discussions on it take their point of departure from Soren Kierkegaard's Fear and Trembling. I shall do so too in this essay, which focuses on the relations between ethics and religious belief and tries to show that Kierkegaard misinterpreted the story. The inquiry analyzes philosophical responses to the Aquedah from Philo and Jewish and non-Jewish philosophers until the present. It underscores its paradoxical (...) implications, including a structuralist analysis and comparison of the Aquedah with the biblical story of Yephta's daughter. The final conclusion asserts that what Kierkegaard extolled, Judaism condemns as sacrilege. (shrink)
Michael Della Rocca has recently argued that Kripkean essentialism is subtly self-defeating: to defend it, certain modal intuitions must be reconstrued in terms of similarity, but reconstruing them in this way threatens the principled rejection of similarity comparisons on which Kripke's essentialism depends. Della Rocca holds that Kripke's strategy must assume the necessity of identity, and that the necessity of identity already presupposes essentialism, which renders the defence circular. Against this, I argue that the necessity of identity may be accepted (...) independently; therefore no circularity need arise. I also argue that Della Rocca fails to rebut an objection raised by Stephen Yablo. (shrink)
This paper deals with Wittgenstein's statement that our "craving for generality" is a main source of confusion in philosophy. It is argued that difficulties connected with this tendency also affect most attempts to explain or elaborate Wittgenstein's philosophical thinking, since most commentaries elucidate his thinking in general terms, in the notions and classificatory apparatus of some prevalent vocabulary of professional philosophy. It is argued that this craving for generality is closely tied up with another tendency of traditional philosophy, namely the (...) tendency to impose substantive normative claims. The effort to dissociate himself from this tendency is a main feature of the late Wittgenstein's philosophy that has not been sufficiently observed. /// O presente ensaio trata da afirmação de Wittgenstein segundo a qual "a nossa ânsia de generalidade" constitui umafonte principal de confusão em filosofia. O autor procura demonstrar até que ponto dificuldades ligadas a esta tendência tambem afectam a maior parte das tentativas para explicar ou pormenorizar o pensamento filosófico de Wittgenstein, dado que a maiorparte dos comentdrios elucidam o seu pensamento em termos gerais, com as noqoes e aparato classificatorio de certo vocabulário dominante dafilosofia profissional. O artigo mostra assim coma está ânsia da generalidade está intimamente ligada com outra tendencia dafilosofia tradicional, nomeadamente a tendência a impor reivindicações normativas substantivas. O autor considera que o esforço de Wittgenstein para se dissociar desta tendencia é precisamente uma das características principais da sua filosofia tardia que não tern sido suficientemente estudada. (shrink)
Social circumstances often impinge on later generations in a socio-economic manner, giving children an uneven start in life. Overfeeding and overeating might not be an exception. The pathways might be complex but one direct mechanism could be genomic imprinting and loss of imprinting. An intergenerational "feedforward" control loop has been proposed, that links grandparental nutrition with the grandchild's growth. The mechanism has been speculated to be a specific response, e.g. to their nutritional state, directly modifying the setting of the gametic (...) imprint on one or more genes. This study raises the question: Can overnutrition during a child's slow growth period trigger such direct mechanisms and partly determine mortality?Data were collected by following-up a cohort born in 1905 in Överkalix parish, northernmost Sweden. The probands were characterised by their parents' or grandparents' access to food during their own slow growth period. Availability of food in the area was defined by referring to historical data on harvests and food prices, records of local community meetings and general historical facts. (shrink)
Scholars have largely misunderstood Soren Kierkegaard, remembering him chiefly in connection with the development of existentialist philosophy in this century. In a short and unhappy life, he wrote many books and articles on literary, satirical, religious and psychological themes, but the diversity and idiosyncratic style of his writing have contributed to a misunderstanding of his ideas. In this book--the only introduction to the full range of Kierkegaard's thought--Patrick Gardiner demonstrates how Kierkegaard developed his ideas and examines his thoughts in (...) light of the doctrines on society developed by his contemporaries Marx and Feuerbach. Finally, he assesses the profound importance of Kierkegaard's ideas on the development of modern ways of thinking. (shrink)
Two ways of characterizing natural kinds are currently popular: the Kripke-Putnam appeal to microstructure and Boyd’s appeal to causal homeostasis. I argue that these conceptions are more divergent than is often acknowledged, that they give no credence to essentialism, and that they are both faulty. In their place, I sketch an alternative view of natural kinds, which I call “bare projectibilism”. This conception avoids the appeal to explanation common to microstructuralism and the causal homeostasis view, but is still compatible with (...) scientific realism. (shrink)
The photographer and reformer Jacob Riis once wrote, “I have seen an armful of daisies keep the peace of a block better than a policeman and his club.” Riis was not alone in his belief that beauty could tame urban chaos, but are aesthetic experiences always a social good? Could aesthetics also inspire violent crime, working-class unrest, and racial murder? To answer these questions, Russ Castronovo turns to those who debated claims that art could democratize culture—civic reformers, anarchists, (...) novelists, civil rights activists, and college professors—to reveal that beauty provides unexpected occasions for radical, even revolutionary, political thinking. B eautiful Democracy explores the intersection of beauty and violence by examining university lectures and course materials on aesthetics from a century ago along with riots, acts of domestic terrorism, magic lantern exhibitions, and other public spectacles. Philosophical aesthetics, realist novels, urban photography, and black periodicals, Castronovo argues, inspired and instigated all sorts of collective social endeavors, from the progressive nature of tenement reform to the horrors of lynching. Discussing Jane Addams, W.E.B. Du Bois, Charlie Chaplin, William Dean Howells, and Riis as aesthetic theorists in the company of Kant and Schiller, Beautiful Democracy ultimately suggests that the distance separating academic thinking and popular wisdom about social transformation is narrower than we generally suppose. (shrink)
The present paper tries to analyse the way in which Judge William, in Sören Kierkegaard's work Either/Or, distinguishes between the aesthetic and the ethical way of life. Basically his distinctions seem to be that the ethicist is a seriously committed person (has inwardness) whereas the aestheticist is indifferent, and that the former accepts universal rules whereas the latter makes an exception for himself. ? In order to come from the aesthetic to the ethical stage one must, according to Judge William, (...) make a choice of oneself. We try to show that such a choice is only one among several factors implicit in his reasoning and that he does not at all consider it as a ?leap?, but as based upon reasons, though his reasons are mostly of an aesthetic nature. Far from seeing the Judge as a champion of choice, we maintain that the book primarily contains a plea for a certain personality ideal. This probably has to do with the fact that he does not seem to be in doubt as to what one ought to do, only as to how to become a person who does what he ought to do. We shall also argue that a choice of oneself, as a matter of fact, is neither necessary nor sufficient in order to bring a person within the ethical stage, as described by the Judge. ? A person who lives ethically does not, according to Judge William, necessarily act rightly, but his actions are either right or wrong, as opposed to the actions of the aestheticist which fall outside the domain of the ethical. In order to obtain a tenable distinction within his philosophy between ?being within the ethical stage? and ?acting ethically rightly? the first concept should be defined in terms of inwardness (serious commitment), the latter as inward conformity with certain universal rules. ? This idea of inwardness, probably the most original and fruitful contribution of ?Equilibrium?, seems to be based, however, like most of his ethical reasoning, on certain controversial assumptions about human nature. (shrink)