In this essay Kelvin Beckett argues that Richard Peters's major work on education, Ethics and Education, belongs on a short list of important texts we can all share. He argues this not because of the place it has in the history of philosophy of education, as important as that is, but because of the contribution it can still make to the future of the discipline. The limitations of Peters's analysis of the concept of education in his chapter on “Criteria (...) of Education” are well known. In the chapter on “Education as Initiation,” however, Peters offered a synthetic sketch of education that, Beckett argues, points us toward a more comprehensive definition of education, one which, he maintains, can be accepted by all philosophers, regardless of the tradition they work in. (shrink)
In social work there is seldom an uncontroversial `right way' of doing things. So how will you deal with the value questions and ethical dilemmas that you will be faced with as a professional social worker? This lively and readable introductory text is designed to equip students with a sound understanding of the principles of values and ethics which no social worker should be without. Bridging the gap between theory and practice, this book successfully explores the complexities of ethical issues, (...) while recognising the real-world context in which social workers operate. Key features of the text include: - Full of hands-on advice and tips for professional practice. - Engaging and student-friendly. Each chapter is packed with case studies, reader exercises, key definitions and useful summaries. - Comprehensive content. The book explores core issues such as moral philosophy; professionalism; religion; power; oppression; difference and diversity; and ethical codes of practice. - Satisfies all the curriculum and training requirements for the new social work degree. Mapping directly on to first year courses, this text is essential reading for all social work undergraduates. It is an ideal refresher text for upper-level undergraduates, postgraduate and post-qualifying students, and for professionals. `This introductory text succeeds in providing an accessible introduction to the subject area. The book is consistently structured, well planned and uniformly written in a conversational and immediate style…. The discussion manages to combine a sense of engagement with a balanced treatment of the issues. Readers who apply themselves will be well sensitised to the matters under discussion and should be able to take their understanding into the practical arena' - Chris Clark, University of Edinburgh. (shrink)
Continuous recordings of brain electrical activity were obtained from a group of 176 patients throughout surgical procedures using general anesthesia. Artifact-free data from the 19 electrodes of the International 10/20 System were subjected to quantitative analysis of the electroencephalogram (QEEG). Induction was variously accomplished with etomidate, propofol or thiopental. Anesthesia was maintained throughout the procedures by isoflurane, desflurane or sevoflurane (N = 68), total intravenous anesthesia using propofol (N = 49), or nitrous oxide plus narcotics (N = 59). A set (...) of QEEG measures were found which reversibly displayed high heterogeneity of variance between four states as follows: (1) during induction; (2) just after loss of consciousness (LOC); (3) just before return of consciousness (ROC); (4) just after ROC. Homogeneity of variance across all agents within states was found. Topographic statistical probability images were compared between states. At LOC, power increased in all frequency bands in the power spectrum with the exception of a decrease in gamma activity, and there was a marked anteriorization of power. Additionally, a significant change occurred in hemispheric relationships, with prefrontal and frontal regions of each hemisphere becoming more closely coupled, and anterior and posterior regions on each hemisphere, as well as homologous regions between the two hemispheres, uncoupling. All of these changes reversed upon ROC. Variable resolution electromagnetic tomography (VARETA) was performed to localize salient features of power anteriorization in three dimensions. A common set of neuroanatomical regions appeared to be the locus of the most probable generators of the observed EEG changes. (shrink)
Voyeurism seems creepy. This paper considers whether these feelings are well-founded. It identifies a variety of ethically troubling features, including harmful consequences, deceit, and the violation of various religious, legal, and conventional norms. Voyeurism is something of a moral misdemeanor that seems worrisome when associated with these other failings. However, because voyeurism remains troubling even in the absence of harm or deceit, we must pay special attention to the ways complex social conventions can be used to show disrespect for others. (...) The discussion centers on the famous case of Lady Godiva and Peeping Tom, but much of the analysis applies to voyeurism more generally. (shrink)
In Beckett and Poststructuralism, Anthony Uhlmann offers a reading of Beckett in relation to recent French philosophy, particularly the work of Foucault, Deleuze and Guattari, Levinas, and Derrida. Uhlmann offers a work of literary criticism that is also a piece of intellectual history, emphasising how Beckett develops a kind of critical thinking which differs from yet is just as powerful as that of philosophers who, along with Beckett, found themselves faced with sets of ethical problems which (...) were thrown into sharp relief in post-war France. Uhlmann explores the links between ethics and physical existence in Beckett, Foucault and Deleuze and Guattari, and between ethics and language in Beckett, Derrida, and Levinas, showing how post-war French philosophy was powerfully affected by Beckett's work. Literature is not reduced to philosophy or vice versa; rather Uhlmann considers how they interrelate and overlap, informing and deforming one another, and how both encounter history. (shrink)
Tom Kelly argues that instrumentalist aeeounts of epistemie rationality fail beeause what a person has reason to believe does not depend upon the eontent of his or her goals. However, his argument fails to distinguish questions about what the evidence supports from questions about what a person ought to believe. Once these are distinguished, the instrumentalist ean avoid Kelly’s objeetions. The paperconcludes by sketehing what I take to be the most defensible version of the instrumentalist view.
Beckett and Philosophy examines and interrogates the relationships between Samuel Beckett's works and contemporary French and German thought. There are two wide-ranging overview chapters by Richard Begam (Beckett and Postfoundationalism) and Robert Eaglestone (Beckett via Literary and Philosophical Theories), and individual chapters on Beckett, Derrida, Foucault, Deleuze, Badious, Merleau-Pointy, Adorno, Hebermas, Heidegger and Nietzsche. The collection takes a fresh look as issues such as postmodern and poststructuralist thought in relation to Beckett studies, providing useful (...) overview chapters and original essays. (shrink)
This paper inquires into the nexus between the Deleuzian critical-clinical hypothesis and its literary instantiation in Beckett, with a focus on How It Is (1964) and Worstward Ho (1983b). I propose to read the interruptions in style symptomatically, and stuttering language in Beckett as liminal expression, thus tracing the flows and breaks of desire which Deleuze theorises in the sense of a symptomatological unconscious. The schizoid style as liminal expression exemplified in Beckett's work will be read as (...) marking transit stages in the process of becoming which invites taking it as a proper language of the body without organs. (shrink)
Beckett often made use of images from the visual arts and readapted them, staging them in his plays, or using them in his fiction. Anthony Uhlmann sets out to explain how an image differs from other terms, like 'metaphor' or 'representation', and, in the process, to analyse Beckett's use of images borrowed from philosophy and aesthetics. This is the first study to carefully examine Beckett's thoughts on the image in his literary works and his extensive notes to (...) the philosopher Arnold Geulincx. Uhlmann considers how images might allow one kind of interaction between philosophy and literature, and how Beckett makes use of images which are borrowed from, or drawn into dialogue with, philosophical images from Geulincx, Berkeley, Bergson, and the ancient Stoics. Uhlmann's reading of Beckett's aesthetic and philosophical interests provides a revolutionary new reading of the importance of the image in his work. (shrink)
A recently published book, 'The Economics of Health Reconsidered' by Tom Rice, provides a strong critique of the role of markets in health care. Many of the issues of 'market failure' raised by Rice, however, have been, to varying extents, recognised previously in the health economics literature (at least outside the U.S.). What perhaps sets Rice's book apart from previous attempts to document such issues is its elegance and the methodical manner in which this critique is delivered. Significantly the critique (...) is based solely on conventional economic arguments. There has, however, been an emerging strand of the health economics literature not acknowledged in Rice's book which has approached some of these issues of market failure from a different perspective. Notably this research has involved, in part, borrowing from the ideas and methodological traditions of other disciplines. The emphasis in this work has been to expand the scope and the concerns of economic analysis in health care. (shrink)
Beckett and Badiou offers a provocative new reading of Samuel Beckett's work on the basis of a full, critical account of the thought of Alain Badiou. Badiou is the most eminent of contemporary French philosophers. His devotion to Beckett's work has been lifelong. Yet for Badiou philosophy must be integrally affirmative, whilst Beckett apparently commits his art to a work of negation. Beckett and Badiou explores the coherences, contradictions, and extreme complexities of the intellectual relationship (...) between the two oeuvres. It examines Badiou's philosophy of being, the event, truth, and the subject and the importance of mathematics within his system. It considers the major features of his politics, ethics, and aesthetics and provides an explanation, interpretation, critique, and radical revision of his work on Beckett. It argues that, once revised, Badiou's version of Beckett offers an extraordinarily powerful tool for understanding his work. -/- Badiou and Beckett are instances of a vestigial or melancholic modernism; that is, in the teeth of a contemporary culture that dreams ever more ambitiously of plenitude, they commit themselves to a rigorous concept of limit and intermittency. Truth and value are occasional and rare. It is seldom that the chance event arrives to disturb the inertia of the world. For Badiou, however, it is the event and its consequences alone that matter. Beckett rather insists on the common experience of intermittency as destitution. His art is a series of limit-figures, exquisitely subtle and nuanced forms for a world whose state of seemingly rigid paralysis is also always volatile, delicately balanced. (shrink)
This paper reconvenes Samuel Beckett’s psychotherapy with Wilfred Bion during 1934–1936 during which time Beckett’s conceived and began writing this second novel, Murphy . Based on Beckett’s visits to the Bethlem & Maudsley Hospital and his observation of the male nurses, the climax of Murphy is a chess match between Mr Endon (a male schizophrenic patient) and Murphy (a male psychiatric nurse). The precise notation of the Endon v Murphy chess match tells us that the Beckett (...) intended it to be an exemplar of an anti-match, perhaps a metaphor for the tragedy of being locked into madness. It is also argued that the match offers us insight into Beckett’s experience of the process of psychotherapy with Bion. Based on new information from Beckett’s nephew and Bion’s widow, hypotheses about the long term impact of the Bion-Beckett analysis are advanced as a mutual experience which shaped the lives and later literary output of both men, producing conjoined career writings which continue to offer us stark and sublime condensations of depression, psychosis, and the challenges of therapy and recovery. (shrink)
Since its publication in 1976, Tom Paine and Revolutionary America has been recognized as a classic study of the career of the foremost political pamphleteer of the Age of Revolution, and a model of how to integrate the political, intellectual, and social history of the struggle for American independence. Foner skillfully brings together an account of Paine's remarkable career with a careful examination of the social worlds within which he operated, in Great Britain, France, and especially the United States. He (...) explores Paine's political and social ideas and the way he popularized them by pioneering a new form of political writing, using simple, direct language and addressing himself to a reading public far broader than previous writers had commanded. He shows which of Paine's views remained essentially fixed throughout his career, while directing attention to the ways his stance on social questions evolved under the pressure of events. This enduring work makes clear the tremendous impact Paine's writing exerted on the American Revolution, and suggests why he failed to have a similar impact during his career in revolutionary France. And it offers new insights into the nature and internal tensions of the republican outlook that helped to shape the Revolution. In a new preface, Foner discusses the origins of this book and the influences of the 1960s and 1970s on its writing. He also looks at how Paine has been adopted by scholars and politicians of many stripes, and has even been called the patron saint of the Internet. (shrink)
To explore literary silence is to explore the relationships between literary texts and the silence of the ineffable. It is to enquire what dynamics texts develop as they strive to 'say the unsayable', and it is to think literature as a silence that speaks itself. This study describes these literary and silent dynamics through readings of Pascal's Pensées, Rousseau's Rêveries, and Beckett's trilogy Molloy, Malone meurt, and L'Innommable. It contributes to our understanding of three major writers and challenges our (...) idea of what silence is. -/- The subject of silence and of the ineffable has a long philosophical and critical tradition. A careful study of this tradition reveals the dominance of a limiting dualistic understanding of silence and its relationship to noise or language: silence becomes the negative other, the beyond, about which there remains nothing to say. The study of literary silence seeks rather to trace a language that becomes its own silence. It compromises the attempt to think a silence that moves within and through texts, that is inherent to the literary expression. Central to this theoretical endeavour are thinkers like Derrida, Deleuze, Gadamer, and Vattimo (among several others). -/- The theoretical understanding of silence permits an effective methodology for reading literary silence. Notions of repetition, the aporia and the implosion, which are developed in reference to Kierkegaard and Bataille, describe textual strategies of literary silence and structure the readings. Finally, the reading of literary silence has its point of reference in writers like Mallarmé, Blanchot, and Beckett. It is their texts that have taught us to become topological readers, to move in and out of texts' movements; they have shown us how the literary expression is irreducible to linear, meaning oriented language. As readers of such texts we have been prepared to read the dynamics of the unsayable, and finally to start discerning the silences of the literary. (shrink)
Throughout his cinema studies, Deleuze tends to define and to praise the cinematic in opposition to the theatrical. Cinema, for Deleuze, retains the potential to automate our perception of its images. Further, this capacity allows the cinema to profoundly disrupt the habitual patterns of its audience's thought. This article asks, however, whether Beckett's theatrical practice can be productively analysed through concepts derived from Deleuze's work on the cinema. In Beckett's Play and Not I, we see theatrical productions that (...) strive for and attain an automation of their audience's perception. While this theatrical experience is not identical to the ‘camera-consciousness’ that Deleuze observes in film, it can be understood through Deleuze's (Bergsonian) processes of habitual and attentive recognition, their failure and their subsequent transformation into passages of crystalline description. Finally, we can begin to elaborate the novel idea of a ‘crystal-theatre’; a theatre where the audience are entrapped within its construction, caught in a loop or circuit that runs between and complicates the realms of reality and illusion, immediately lived experience and artistic representation, the actual and the virtual. (shrink)
Tom Regan (this issue) criticizes my thesis that obligation toward the environment is grounded in a world view and thereby has a moral overridingness which mere interests and desires do not have. He holds that my approach is too subjectivistic. I counter, first, by explaining that phenomenology, which I use in my analysis of moral obligation, is not subjectivistic in the way emotivism or prescriptivism inethics is subjectivistic. Second, I argue that world views are products of learning and experience of (...) one shared world, that most world views share large areas of agreement, and that they can be argued for and criticized. (shrink)
Film, Samuel Beckett's 1964 short starring Buster Keaton, dubbed by Deleuze as ‘The Greatest Irish Film’, is a seminal text in the latter's cinematic canon as it helps us to extrapolate the transition from the Bergson-based movement-image of Cinema 1 to the Nietzschean time-image of Cinema 2. Film is unique insofar as its narrative traverses and progressively destroys the action-, perception- and affection-images that constitute the movement-image as a whole, using Keaton's body, and more importantly his face, as a (...) means of attaining a pure intensity or Entity abstracted from all spatio-temporal coordinates, a condition of exhaustion/saturation that Deleuze and Guattari call, ‘non-human becoming’. Beckett's film is predicated on Bishop Berkeley's fundamental philosophical principle, esse est percipi (to be is to be perceived) and, using Keaton as its protagonist, raises the question of whether it is possible to escape perception, not only by a third party, but also by oneself. The latter is ‘played’ by the camera itself, which ‘stalks’ Keaton from behind, taking great pains not to exceed a 45-degree ‘angle of immunity’ (lest Buster experience percipi or the anguish of perceivedness) until the film's final close-up when he comes face to face with his own self-perception and affective annihilation. Film's denouement thus deconstructs the very nature of conventional cinematic language, whereby filmic suture – the enfolding of character, camera and spectatorial ‘viewing-views’ into a unified field of vision – gives way to a perspective where, at the very moment that the perceptive/affective body dies, the work of filmic art gives birth to itself as a being of pure sensation, exceeding lived experience. (shrink)
‘Creative Involution’ posits something of a philosophical genealogy, a line of flight that has neither need for nor interest in the periodisation of Modernism, a line of which Beckett (even reluctantly) is part. Murphy, among others, is deterritorialised as much as Beckett's landscapes are, and so he/they become a ‘complexification’ of being that manifests itself in Beckett not as represented, representative or a representation, since so much of Beckett deals with that which cannot be uttered, known (...) or represented, but whose image the works (and its figures) have become, a thinking through of negativity, becoming, and multiplicity through non-Newtonian motion, of being as becoming, where every movement brings something new into the world, but in something of a reverse Darwinism that moves from complex to simple organism, from Murphy to Worm, or Watt to Pim, or among the nameless figures in the short prose, a ‘becoming-animal’, in something not so much of a creative devolution but rather a ‘neoevolution’, or to adopt another term from Deleuze and Guattari, an ‘involution’, which ‘is in no way confused with regression’ (1987: 238), becomings creating nothing less than new worlds. Writing casually to his post-war confidant Georges Duthuit on 26 July 1951, Beckett noted in the midst of gardening chores, ‘Never seen so many butterflies in such worm-state, this little central cylinder, the only flesh, is the worm’ (2011: 271). The observation comes after the writing but before the premiere performance of Waiting for Godot in which Gogo tells Didi, ‘You and your landscapes! Tell me about the worms!’ (1954: 67). Such ‘becoming-animal always involves a pack, a band, a population, a peopling, in short a multiplicity’ (1987: 239), Deleuze and Guattari tell us. For Beckett it defines creativity as well, only possible through such un-tethered selves or beings, amid the generation of varieties and differences, accessible through moments of deterritorialisation, characterised by, ‘A fearsome involution calling us toward unheard-of becomings’ (240). (shrink)
In Essays Critical and Clinical, Deleuze argues that Beckettian characters usually strive towards becoming imperceptible. This statement immediately poses another question: what is becoming imperceptible and where does it lead? How can we rid ourselves of ourselves? Paradoxically enough, Deleuze states that becoming imperceptible is life. The literal and self-evident meaning of life seems somehow incompatible with the image of dissolving and decaying characters in Beckett's works. Contrary to this self-evidence, the notion of life in Deleuze and Beckett (...) should be interpreted as pure potentiality which opens both the potential to be (or do) and the potential not to be (or do). Beckettian characters together with other figures, such as Bartleby, let us think of a life in its potential not to be. The life of the individual gives way to impersonal and singular life: a life of pure immanence. Such a life can be immanent to a man who no longer has a name, though he can be mistaken for no other: the Beckettian Unnamable. (shrink)
This is an extremely thorough revision of the leading textbook of bioethics. The authors have made many improvements in style, organization, argument and content. These changes reflect advances in the bioethics literature over the past five years. The most dramatic expansions of the text are in the comprehensiveness with which the authors treat different currents in ethical theory and the greater breadth and depth of their discussion of public policy and public health issues. In every chapter, readers will find new (...) material and refinements of old discussions. This is evident in the many new sections on topics like communitarianism, ethics of care, relationship-based accounts, casuistry, case-based reasoning, principle-based common-morality theories, the justification of assistance in dying, rationing through priorities in the health care budget, and virtues in professional roles. The most extensive revisions are in chapters 1, 2 and 8. (shrink)
This book is an encounter between Deleuze the philosopher, Proust the novelist, and Beckett the writer creating interdisciplinary and inter-aesthetic bridges between them, covering textual, visual, sonic and performative phenomena, including provocative speculation about how Proust might have responded to Deleuze and Beckett.
If there is one trait common to almost all post-Holocaust theories of literature, it is arguably the notion that the literary event constitutes the affirmation of an alterity that resists all dialectical mastery and makes possible a post-metaphysical ethics. Beckett's oeuvre in particular has repeatedly been deployed as exemplary of just such an affirmation. In Beckett, Literature and the Ethics of Alterity , however, Weller argues through an analysis of the interrelated topics of translation, comedy, and gender that (...) to read Beckett in this way is to miss the strangely 'anethical' nature of his work. (shrink)
In this article, I seek to make sense of the oft-invoked idea of 'public emergency' and of some of its (supposedly) radical moral implications. I challenge controversial claims by Tom Sorell, Michael Walzer, and Giorgio Agamben, and argue for a more discriminating understanding of the category and its moral force.
Wesley Salmon and John Earman have presented influential Bayesian reconstructions of Thomas Kuhn’s account of theory-change. In this paper I argue that all attempts to give a Bayesian reading of Kuhn’s philosophy of science are fundamentally misguided due to the fact that Bayesian confirmation theory is in fact inconsistent with Kuhn’s account. The reasons for this inconsistency are traced to the role the concept of incommensurability plays with reference to the ‘observational vocabulary’ within Kuhn’s picture of scientific theories. The upshot (...) of the discussion is that it is impossible to integrate both Kuhn’s claims and Bayesianism within a coherent account of theory-change. (shrink)