This article uses Walter Benjamin's theoretical claims in the 'Critique of violence' to shed light on some current conceptualisations of terrorism. It suggests an understanding of terrorism as an essentially contested concept. If the theorist uncritically adopts the state's account of terrorism, she occludes an important dimension of the phenomenon that allows for a rethinking of the state's claim to a monopoly on legitimate violence. Benjamin's essay conceptualises the state as resulting from a conjunction of violence, law, legitimacy and power (...) that rests on mythical ideas about nature and history. It shows why the state claims to be justified in taking exceptional measures when this link is challenged and when its prerogative to the legitimate use of force is called into question. This, I argue, is what terrorism does. Thus, Benjamin's essay adds to a more nuanced and less one-sided understanding of both terrorism and state violence. (shrink)
Ecopolitics is a study of environmental awareness--or non-awareness--in contemporary French theory. Arguing that it is now impossible not to think in an ecological way, Verena Andermatt Conley traces the roots of today's concern for the environment back to the intellectual climate of the late '50s and '60s. Major thinkers of 1968, the author argues, changed the way we think the world; this owes much to an ecological awareness that remains at the heart of issues concerning cultural theory in general. (...) The book points to critiques of ecology in the work of Luc Ferry and Jean Baudrillard before turning to more complicated ecological awareness primarily in French thought. The author considers key texts by influential figures such as Michael Serres, Paul Virilio, Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, Michel de Certeau, Helene Cixous and Luce Irigaray. (shrink)
Quine criticised the semantic notion of analyticity that is often attributed to Frege and Kant for presupposing an essentialist theory of meaning. In what follows I trace back the notion from Quine via Carnap to Frege and Kant, and eventually examine Kant's distinction between analytic and synthetic judgements in more detail. It turns out that the so called Frege-Kant-notion of analyticity can not be attributed to Kant. In contrast, Kant had a distinctly pragmatic notion of analytic judgements. According to him (...) analytic propositions elucidate certain presuppositions of our conceptual scheme, thereby serving the anti-metaphysical project of transcendental philosophy. (shrink)
Managers seeking to respect local norms when operating in cross-cultural settings may encounter ethical dilemmas when faced with values that potentially conflict with their own. The question of whose ethics or values should be applied or whether a set of universal eth- ical norms should be developed often confronts managers in their international business dealings. This article explores the findings from a qualitative research study that examines critical ethical dilemmas confronting Australian managers in their international business operations and their responses (...) to those dilemmas. For Australians managers in this study, bribery emerged as the major ethical dilemma confronting them in their international operations. (shrink)
According to Bickle, certain empirical results demonstrate that the bottom-up reduction of phychological concepts to the concepts of neuroscience has already been accomplished. I argue that this conclusion is hasty. Bickle claims that all high-level investigations depend on a mistake. I argue that this overstates the explanatory character of neuroscientific findings. Bickle's assessment is highly optimistic, but he is far from making a decisive argument. Those who wait for a full-blown reductionism will have to wait a little longer.
There is an unresolved paradox concerning the role of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in consumer behavior. On the one hand, consumers demand more and more CSR information from corporations. On the other hand, research indicates a considerable gap between consumers’ apparent interest in CSR and the limited role of CSR in purchase behavior. This article attempts to shed light on this paradox by drawing on qualitative data from in-depth interviews. The findings show that the evaluation of CSR initiatives is a (...) complex and hierarchically structured process, during which consumers distinguish between core, central, and peripheral factors. This article describes these factors in detail and explains the complexity of consumers’ assessment of CSR. These insights then serve as a basis for discussing the theoretical and managerial implications of the research findings. To this end, the article contributes to a better understanding of the role of CSR in consumption decisions. (shrink)
Although Frege was eager to theoretically eliminate the judging subject from logic and mathematics, his system is permeated with notions that refer to subjective mental processes, such as grasping a thought, assuming, judging, and value. His semantic system depends on such notions, but since Frege in general shuns explaining them, his central conception of judgment and truth remains dark. In this paper it is proposed to fill out the gaps in Frege's explanations with the help of Husserl's phenomenological descriptions, especially (...) those of the sixth Logical Investigation. This leads to a comparison between Frege's notion of judgment and Husserl's "Evidenz", and finally also to a phenomenological classification of Frege's remarks on truth. (shrink)
Pylyshyn raises hot topics like the number and kinds of pictorialist theories there are and their explanatory power. Pylyshyn states that pictorialists have only two possibilities – they can posit either “only functional” images or “really spatial” images – and that neither of these possibilities is convincing or sufficient in explanatory power for empirical and theoretical reasons. Is pictorialism, in principle, untenable?
Conversational contextualism states that the truth-conditions expressed by knowledge-attributing sentences vary relative to the context of utterance. This context is determined partly by different standards the person involved must meet in order to make the sentence true. I am concerned with the question of how these standards can be raised or lowered, and especially what happens to the standards and the conversational score when parties in a discussion push the conversational scores in different directions. None of the available options for (...) an answer seems satisfying. I argue that this results from a misunderstanding of the characteristics of the situation at hand. (shrink)
Western laws and codes of ethics frequently require that private health information be treated confidentially. However, cross-cultural research shows that it is not always easy to determine what members of a culture consider to be private or how they wish private information to be handled. This article begins by presenting an ethnographic study of patient-healer relationships in Sri Lanka; researchers were surprised to find that participants' views of health and privacy differed greatly from typical Western views, and that the privacy (...) protections they had put in place caused discomfort among participants. Building on this ethics case study, the article explores two main questions. First, can a single definition of privacy possibly do justice to the cultural variations that exist, or does a conceptual definition inevitably run the risk of ethnocentrism? Second, to what extent is strict compliance with research regulations or ethics codes ethically justifiable when following the rules will obviously cause unease in international participants? (shrink)
Gottschling, Verena (2003): Bilder im Geiste. Die Imagery-Debatte. Paderborn: Mentis. Nida-Rümelin, Martine (2006): Der Blick von Innen. Zur transtemporalen Identität bewusstseinsfähiger Wesen. Frankfurt (Main): Suhrkamp.
Common Sense and Logic in Jan Smedslund's 'Psycho-logic'. This paper is about the efforts the norwegian psychologist Jan Smedslund made in analyzing and checking philosophically his theory called 'Psycho-logic'. I am going to reconstruct and discuss the debates between Smedslund and several critics, which have been going on since about 1978, mainly in the "Scandinavian Journal of Psychology". A result will be that the kind of modal logics Smedslund uses - a type with realistic semantics and epistemology - is not (...) the proper one for the analysis of 'Psycho-logic'. (shrink)
Frege spricht einerseits von der Zerlegung von Gedanken in Gedankenteile, andrerseits aber vom Aufbau von Gedanken. Scheinbar werden damit verschiedene inkompatible Auffassungen über Struktur bzw. Strukturlosigkeit von Gedanken ausgedrückt. Frege gebraucht jedoch den Ausdruck „Zerlegung" in mehreren Bedeutungen, die mit der Idee einer Konstruktion des Gedankens aus Teilen nicht nur vereinbar sind, sondern diese Idee sinnvoll ergänzen. Gedanken im Sinne Freges sind schon an sich auf eine bestimmte Weise logisch strukturiert und unterschieden sich gerade dadurch wesentlich von den sprachlichen Bedeutungen (...) natursprachlicher Sätze. (shrink)
A theory from the behavioral and social sciences is presented from the structuralist point of view. A more comprehensive theory-net is outlined, some basic terms and core assumptions are formulated, and an expansion of the theory towards two intended applications is given. Finally, some results of a first empirical test of the theory are reported. The aim of the paper is to show that the structuralist account of scientific theories is not confined to mathematical theories from the natural sciences, but (...) can also be applied to relatively informal constructions of the behavioral and social sciences. (shrink)