Human beings, even very young infants, and members of several other species, exhibit remarkable capacities for attending to and engaging with others. These basic capacities have been the subject of intense research in developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, comparative psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy of mind over the last several decades. Appropriately characterizing the exact level and nature of these abilities and what lies at their basis continues to prove a tricky business. The contributions to this special issue investigate whether and to (...) what extent the exercise of such capacities count as, or are best explained by, a genuine understanding of minds, where such understanding depends on the creatures in question possessing capacities for attributing a range of mental states and their contents in systematic ways. The question that takes center stage is: Do the capacities for attending to and engaging with others in question involve mindreading or is this achieved by other means? In this editorial we will review the state of the debate between mindreading and alternative accounts of social cognition. The issue is organized as follows: the first two papers review the experimental literature on mindreading in primates (Bermúdez) and children (Low & Wang), and the kinds of arguments made for mindreading and alternative accounts of social cognition. The next set of papers (Hedger & Fabricius, Lurz & Krachun, Zawidzki, and de Bruin et al.) further critique the existing experimental data and defend various mindreading and non-mindreading accounts. The final set of papers address further issues raised by phenomenological (Jacob, Zahavi), enactive (Michael), and embodied (Spaulding) accounts of social cognition. (shrink)
Postmodernism has significantly affected the theory and practice of history. It has induced fears about the future of historical study, but has also offered liberation from certain modernist constraints. This original and thought-provoking study looks at the context of postmodernist thought in general cultural terms as well as in relation to history. Postmodernism in History traces philosophical precursors of postmodernism and identifies the roots of current concerns. Beverley Southgate describes the core constituents of postmodernism and provides a lucid and (...) profound analysis of the current state of the debate. His main concern is to counter `pomophobia' and to assert a positive future for historical study in a postmodern world. Postmodernism in History is a valuable guide to some of the most complex questions in historical theory for students and teachers alike. (shrink)
What is History For? is a timely publication that examines the purpose and point of historical studies. Recent debates on the role of the humanities and the ongoing impact of poststructuralist thought on the very nature of historical enquiry, have rendered the question "what is history for?" of utmost importance. Charting the development of historical studies, Beverley Southgate examines the various uses to which history has been put. While history has often supposedly been studied "for its own sake," (...) class='Hi'>Southgate argues that this seemingly innocent approach masks an inherent conservatism and exposes the ways in which history, has, sometimes deliberately, sometimes inadvertently, been used for socio-political purposes. With traditional notions of truth and historical representation now under question, it has become vital to rethink the function of history and renegotiate its uses for the post-modern age. History in the 21st century, Southgate proposes, should adopt a morally therapeutic role that seeks to advance human happiness. This fascinating historicisation of the study of history is unique in its focus on the future of the subject as well as its past. What is History For? provides compulsive reading for the general reader and students alike. (shrink)
We introduce the second part of a two-part collection of articles exploring a possible new research program in the field of science and religion. At the center of the program lies an attempt to develop a new theology of nature drawing on the philosophy of C. S. Peirce. Our overall idea is that the fundamental structure of the world is exactly that required for the emergence of meaning and truth-bearing representation. We understand the emergence of a capacity to interpret an (...) environment to be important to the emergence of life, and we see the subsequent history of biological evolution as a story of increasing capacities for meaning-making and -seeking. Theologically, we understand God to be the ground of all such meaning-making and the ultimate goal of the universe's emerging capacity for interpreting signs. Here we summarize the articles in Part 1, which focused on scientific and philosophical aspects of the research program, and introduce Part 2, which turns to the theological outworking of the project. (shrink)
We introduce a two-part collection of articles (Part 2 to appear in the September 2010 issue) exploring a possible new research program in the field of science and religion. At the center of the program lies an attempt to develop a new theology of nature drawing on the philosophy of C. S. Peirce. Our overall idea is that the fundamental structure of the world is exactly that required for the emergence of meaning and truth-bearing representation. We understand the emergence of (...) a capacity to interpret an environment to be important to the emergence of life, and we see the subsequent history of biological evolution as a story of increasing capacities for meaning making and meaning seeking. Theologically, we understand God to be the ground of all such meaning making and the ultimate goal of the universe's emerging capacity for interpreting signs. Here we explain our reasons for seeking a new metaphysical framework in which science and theology may each find a home. We survey the contributions to the two-part collection, and we suggest that the interdisciplinary collaboration from which these have arisen may serve as a methodological model for the field of science and religion. (shrink)
Kalevi Kull and colleagues recently proposed eight theses as a conceptual basis for the field of biosemiotics. We use these theses as a framework for discussing important current areas of debate in biosemiotics with particular reference to the articles collected in this issue of Zygon.
We draw on Short’s work on Peirce’s theory of signs to propose a new general definition of interpretation. Short argues that Peirce’s semiotics rests on his naturalised teleology. Our proposal extends Short’s work by modifying his definition of interpretation so as to make it more generally applicable to putatively interpretative processes in biological systems. We use our definition as the basis of an account of different kinds of misinterpretation and we discuss some questions raised by the definition by reference to (...) parallel problems in the field of teleosemantics. We propose that interpretative responses fulfilling the criteria of our definition may be made by relatively simple molecular entities and we suggest two specific empirical applications of the definition to experimental work in the field of origin of life research. Our wider aim is to suggest that a well formulated naturalistic definition of interpretation will allow a re-evaluation of the role of semiotic phenomena in biological systems, including the generation of empirically testable hypotheses. (shrink)
Abstract. This article offers one response from within Christianity to the theological challenges of Darwinism. It identifies evolutionary theory as a key aspect of the context of contemporary Christian hermeneutics. Examples of the need for re-reading of scripture, and reassessment of key doctrines, in the light of Darwinism include the reading of the creation and fall accounts of Genesis 1–3, the reformulation of the Christian doctrine of humanity as created in the image of God, and the possibility of a new (...) approach to the Incarnation in the light of evolution and semiotics. Finally, a theodicy in respect of evolutionary suffering is outlined, in dialogue with recent writings attributing such suffering to a force in opposition to God. The latter move is rejected on both theological and scientific grounds. Further work on evolutionary theodicy is proposed, in relation in particular to the doctrine of creatio ex nihilo. (shrink)
History: what & Why? is a highly accessible introductory survey of historians' views about the nature and purpose of their subject. It offers a historical perspective and clear guide to contemporary debates about the nature and purpose of history and a discussion of the traditional model of history as an account of the past "as it was". It assesses the challenges to orthodox views and examines the impact of Marxism, feminism and post-colonialism on the study of history.
We provide an overview of a proposal for a new metaphysical framework within which theology and science might both find a home. Our proposal draws on the triadic semiotics and threefold system of metaphysical categories of C. S. Peirce. We summarize the key features of a semiotic model of the Trinity, based on observed parallels between Peirce's categories of Firstness, Secondness, and Thirdness and Christian thinking about, respectively, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We test and extend the semiotic model (...) by exploring how Peirce's taxonomy of signs offers a new approach to theological reflection on the Incarnation. This leads to a novel way of framing scientific questions about human evolution in semiotic terms and to a new approach to theological anthropology. Finally, we use the semiotic model of the Trinity as the basis of a trinitarian approach to the theology of creation according to which the semiotic processes that are fundamental to life and to human behavior and cognition may be understood as “vestiges of the Trinity in creation.”. (shrink)
We offer a general definition of interpretation based on a naturalized teleology. The definition tests and extends the biosemiotic paradigm by seeking to provide a philosophically robust resource for investigating the possible role of semiosis (processes of representation and interpretation) in biological systems. We show that our definition provides a way of understanding various possible kinds of misinterpretation, illustrate the definition using examples at the cellular and subcellular level, and test the definition by applying it to a potential counterexample. We (...) explain how we propose to use the definition as a way of asking new questions about what distinguishes life from non-life and of formulating testable hypotheses within the field of origin-of-life research. If the definition leads to fruitful new empirical approaches to the scientific problem of the origin of life, it will help to establish biosemiotics as a legitimate philosophical approach in theoretical biology and will thereby support a theological appropriation of the biosemiotic perspective as the basis of a new theology of nature. (shrink)
It turns out that you can teach an old dog—even a “dead dog,” as Lessing would describe Spinoza—new tricks. In Spinoza and German Idealism, we learn not only how Spinoza influenced the German Idealists, but also how they transformed and gave new life to the key concepts of his system. In this collection of fourteen essays, we see how Kant, Schleiermacher, Herder, Goethe, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel, and Trendelenburg understood (and misunderstood) Spinoza’s conception of God, intellectual intuition, human freedom, and the (...) relation between the infinite and the finite—to name but a few of the topics treated in these pages—and also how they defined their own philosophical projects in response to Spinoza on those points. .. (shrink)
In the preceding article in this section, F. LeRon Shults responds to our article preceding his, “Semiotics as a Metaphysical Framework for Christian Theology.” We respond here to his criticisms of our proposal. We discuss his concerns about the concept of “vestiges of the Trinity in creation” and argue that this does not undermine the absolute ontological difference between God and creation. We offer a clarification of our idea that the Incarnation may be understood, in terms of Peirce's taxonomy of (...) signs, as a qualisign of God's being. Finally, we discuss the idea that all symbols “break on the infinite.”. (shrink)
This article surveys and classifies the kinds of appeal to the Bible made in recent theological discussions of ecology and environmental ethics. These are, first, readings of `recovery', followed by two types of readings of `resistance'. The first of these modes of resistance entails the exercise of suspicion against the text, a willingness to resist it given a commitment to a particular (ethical) reading perspective. The second, by contrast, entails a resistance to the contemporary ethical agenda, given a perceived commitment (...) to the Bible. This initial typology and the various reading strategies surveyed are then subjected to criticism, as part of an attempt to begin to develop an ecological hermeneutic, a hermeneutic which operates between recovery and resistance with an approach that may be labelled `revision', `reformation' or `reconfiguration'. (shrink)
This fully revised and updated edition of God, Humanity and the Cosmos is an essential companion to the field, with exercises for the student, a comprehensive bibliography, and suggestions for further reading.
Nanostructured materials should present a good resistance to irradiation because the large volume fraction of grain boundaries can be an important sink for radiation-induced defects. The objective of the present study is to experimentally investigate the irradiation impact on the microstructure and mechanical properties in nanostructured materials. Nickel and Cu-0.5Al2O3 specimens were synthesized by electro deposition (ED) and severe plastic deformation (SPD). Mean grain size of the unirradiated specimen is about 30?nm for the ED Ni and about 115?nm for the (...) SPD Ni. 590?MeV proton irradiation and 840?keV nickel ion irradiation were conducted at room temperature. Vickers hardness measurements and transmission electron microscope observation were performed to examine the impact of irradiation on nanocrystalline materials. It appears that the irradiation induced microstructure in Ni and in Cu-0.5Al2O3, which leads to hardening, consists exclusively of stacking fault tetrahedra. Their density appears much lower than in the case of coarser grained material. These results, experimentally showing the resistance of nanostructured material to radiation damage, are presented here. (shrink)
The microstructural modifications due to irradiation in hcp pure metals and their consequences on the mechanical properties have been investigated. Experimental results for proton-irradiated pure polycrystalline titanium are presented and discussed. Samples have been irradiated with 590?MeV protons to a low dose range at two different temperatures, room temperature and 523?K. Defect sizes and densities as a function of dose have been determined by means of transmission electron microscopy observations, and hardening has been measured from uniaxial tensile stress?strain curves. The (...) dose dependence of the irradiation hardening has been found to depend strongly on the investigated temperatures. These results are discussed in terms of the main deformation mechanism operating at each temperature. (shrink)
We present a comprehensive dislocation dynamics (DD) study of the strength of stacking fault tetrahedra (SFT) to screw dislocation glide in fcc Cu. Our methodology explicitly accounts for partial dislocation reactions in fcc crystals, which allows us to provide more detailed insights into the dislocation?SFT processes than previous DD studies. The resistance due to stacking fault surfaces to dislocation cutting has been computed using atomistic simulations and added in the form of a point stress to our DD methodology. We obtain (...) a value of 1658.9 MPa, which translates into an extra force resolved on the glide plane that dislocations must overcome before they can penetrate SFTs. In fact, we see they do not, leading to two well differentiated regimes: (i) partial dislocation reactions, resulting in partial SFT damage, and (ii) impenetrable SFT resulting in the creation of Orowan loops. We obtain SFT strength maps as a function of dislocation glide plane-SFT intersection height, interaction orientation, and dislocation line length. In general SFTs are weaker obstacles the smaller the encountered triangular area is, which has allowed us to derive simple scaling laws with the slipped area as the only variable. These laws suffice to explain all strength curves and are used to derive a simple model of dislocation?SFT strength. The stresses required to break through obstacles in the 2.5?4.8-nm size range have been computed to be 100?300 MPa, in good agreement with some experimental estimations and molecular dynamics calculations. (shrink)
Large-scale molecular dynamics of cascade production of the primary damage state are performed in nanocrystalline nickel with an average grain diameter of 12?nm and primary knock-on atom kinetic energies ranging from 5 to 30?keV. The role of the grain boundary during the cascade production of irradiated NC Ni is discussed in terms of grain-boundary structure. It is shown that regions of misfit in the grain boundaries can absorb self-interstitials and that stacking-fault tetrahedra are formed in the neighbourhood of the grain (...) boundary. (shrink)
Irradiation induces the formation of stacking fault tetrahedra (SFTs) in a number of fcc metals, such as stainless steel and pure copper. In order to understand the role of the material's parameters on this formation, pure Cu, Ni, Pd and Al, having a respective stacking fault energy of 45, 125, 180 and 166?mJ?m?2, have been irradiated with high energy protons to a dose of about 10?2?dpa at room temperature. The irradiation-induced microstructure has been investigated using transmission electron microscopy. All irradiated (...) metals but Al present SFTs. The proportion of perfect, truncated and grouped SFTs has been determined. The SFT energy as a function of size has been calculated using elasticity of the continuum, with respect to the energy of a number of other possible defect configurations. It appears that the key parameters are the stacking fault energy and the shear modulus. Their implication on the formation and stability of the SFTs is discussed. (shrink)
It is increasingly agreed that ethics has a place in undergraduate medical education. There is, however, debate about how it should be taught, and by whom. We present our experience of teaching ethics in a general practice module over six years. During this period there has been a shift from a teacher-centred to a student-centred approach in which students choose ethical issues to explore within a framework provided. The issues raised are discussed with examples, and the future directions of our (...) ethics teaching outlined. (shrink)
Single-crystal nickel was irradiated with 590?MeV protons to 10?1?dpa at room temperature. Irradiated and unirradiated tensile samples were deformed and relaxation tests were performed at temperatures between 77 and 423?K. The tests show a strong temperature dependence of the flow stress for samples irradiated to 0.1?dpa as compared to the unirradiated case. Unirradiated and irradiated deformed microstructures were investigated by transmission electron microscopy. The initial plastic deformation of the samples irradiated at 0.1?dpa shows strain localization in the form of defect (...) free channels, over the temperature range from 77 to 293?K. Deformation processes are analysed through the determination of the activation energies of the deformation mechanisms as deduced from relaxation tests. The activation energy has an approximate value of 0.5?eV in unirradiated samples. In the irradiated samples it is suggested that multiple deformation processes are operative in the temperature range from 77 to 423?K. (shrink)
This article to honor Professor Yolanda Ruano is divided into two parts. In the first one, I argue about the criticisms she realized to my book on the goddess Fortune in advancing her own analysis of the complex relationship between reason and fortune in Western thought. In the second part, from the standpoint of the “iconic turn” in the humanities and social sciences, I analyze the specific case of the rise and downfall of the goddess Fortune in the political iconography (...) of the city of Berlin. Throughout the nineteenth century the goddess Fortune disappeared of Berlin and was replaced by the goddess Nike or Victoria, popularly interpreted as an Angel of Victory. This is the framework of the childhood of Walter Benjamin, who later expressed his view on history with a completely different angel, the Angelus Novus by Paul Klee. (shrink)
Summary Ferdinand von Mueller (1825?96), the German-born Government Botanist of Victoria from 1853 until his death, and concurrently Director of the Melbourne Botanic Garden from 1857 until 1873, was a prolific systematic botanist, but also heavily involved in public educational activities. He conceived of the Garden as an educative place of recreation, but ultimately lost control over it. His loss did not stop his popular writing and lecturing, especially in areas related to the application of botany in horticulture, agriculture, (...) and forestry. The structure of his introductory school text?very different from the intensely logical grammar-like botany texts of the period?owed much to his political masters, but it is characterized by careful attention to language and locality. Mueller's work represents a consistent and pervasive example of attention to the ?public understanding of science? that resonates with the concerns of early twenty-first-century funders of scientific research. (shrink)
McGovern, Kevin A recent move in Victoria to decriminalise abortion invites reflection on this issue. In this article, I review the history which has led to the present situation, and then offer four comments.
Mediante un análisis del último libro publicado por Victoria Camps, El Gobierno de las emociones , Premio Nacional de Ensayo 2012, se pretende resaltar, siguiendo su argumentación, la importancia de la motivación para el comportamiento moral. La motivación hace uso de razones instrumentales para potenciar emociones adecuadas y llegar así a la formación del carácter moral, a la autoestima moral. De este modo, se concluye que los sentimientos son educables, pero tenemos que buscar el clima propicio para ello y (...) esto forma parte de la tarea de la ética. (shrink)