Introduction : points of departure -- A genealogy of the Christian colonial mindset : ex nihilo from disputed beginnings to orthodox origins -- Ex nihilo and the origin of an empire -- Ex nihilo, erasure and discovery? -- The cogito, ex nihilo, and the legacy of John Locke -- The creation ex nihilo of terra nullius lands : omnipotent nations and the logic of global-colonization -- From epistemologies of domination to grounded thinking -- Opening words about God onto creatio continua (...) -- Creatio continua "all the way down": a post-colonial, planetary understanding of continuing creation -- Conclusion : a brief thought after. (shrink)
The epistemological and ontological claims of social/ist ecofeminist thought (a combination of social and socialist ecofeminism) are moving away from the dichotomy between idealism and materialism (both forms of colonial thinking about humans and the rest of the natural world). The social/ist ecofeminists have constructed a postfoundational “eco-ontology” of nature-cultures (Haraway) in which the ideal and the material are co-agents in the continuing process of creation. Given that contemporary public discourse in the United States on the topic of “environmental issues” (...) is still heavily shaped by Christian theology and metaphors, changing or challenging this discourse must also mean speaking theologically. Based upon an understanding of social/ist ecofeminist “eco-ontology,” a new understanding of God (ideal) and Creation (material) can be constructed which suggests that God is a human horizon that helps reconnect (religion/religare) Christian humans with the rest of the natural world and with the manyhuman “others” of different religious traditions. In this construction, Carolyn Merchant’s understanding of humans as “partners” with nature and Catherine Keller’s postcolonial critique of the Christian doctrine of creation out of nothing are the most helpful. (shrink)
Abstract This article explores how religion and science, as worlding practices, are changed by the processes of globalization and global climate change. In the face of these processes, two primary methods of meaning making are emerging: the logic of globalization and planetary assemblages. The former operates out of the same logic as extant axial age religions, the Enlightenment, and Modernity. It is caught up in the process of universalizing meanings, objective truth, and a single reality. The latter suggests that the (...) processes of globalization and climate change break open any universalizing attempt at meaning onto a proliferation of different, evolving planetary contexts. Both science and religion are affected by these changes, and the ways in which they shape our understandings of and relationship to the rest of the natural world are changed. (shrink)
Why do most of us consider ourselves free but also believe there is little we can change in the way the world is run - individually, severally, or even collectively? Why has the growth of individual freedom coincided with the growth of collective impotence? Bauman argues that this condition hangs on the agora - the space where private and public meet to seek the creation of 'public good', a 'just society', or 'shared values'. The problem is that little remains (...) of such old style spaces. We cannot, he argues, overcome our collective impotence without resorting to politics and using the vehicle of political agency. Three orientation points for a reconstruction of politics are suggested: the republican model of the state and of citizenship, basic income as a universal entitlement, and re-enabling the institutions of autonomous society by catching up with the controlling extraterritorial powers in an age of globalization. (shrink)
What is the nature of the compulsion to life writing? How does the elongated project of writing a life change as it shifts moments and locales, and why do others respond so directly as readers of stories that are so specific and particular? Janina Bauman is known in English-speaking cultures for two books, Winter in the Morning (1986) and A Dream of Belonging (1988). The first covers her girlhood in the Warsaw ghetto, and escape; the second, more fictionalized, deals (...) with the period leading up to exile from Poland after 1968. Janina Bauman spent 20 years of her life working in Polish film. This article reflects on the process of coming to autobiography, and making sense of the writing process and the reception process. (shrink)
How will the Holocaust be remembered as its survivors disappear? In this article Janina Bauman reflects upon her own work on the Holocaust in the context of the Holocaust's broader reception. She offers her own views about the genre with reference to contemporary documents and testimonials, secondary work, scholarly work, fiction and film. These observations and stories all circulate around her own 1986 landmark text, Winter in the Morning.
The assumption that human socializing instincts are restricted to the community of birth and upbringing was long accepted without question. But today’s modern states have passed from the nation-building stage into that of multicultural belonging, and fluidity of membership allied to perpetual population shifts is the norm. This article traces changing patterns of global migration: first, territoriality plus rooted identity plus ‘gardening’; second, emigration to supposedly ‘empty’ lands; third, interlocked diasporas. How may we now live with and in the right (...) to difference? Identity formation is never fixed, never final, veering between the pole of freedom and that of security. It is an intertwining of continuity and discontinuity that may now hold society together. (shrink)
Each one of T.H. Marshall's trinity of human rights rested on the state as, simultaneously, its birth place, executive manager and guardian. And no wonder. At the time Marshall tied personal, political and social freedoms into a historically determined succession of won/bestowed rights, the boundaries of the sovereign state marked the limits of what humans could contemplate, and what they thought they should jointly do, in order to make their world more user-friendly. The state enclosed territory was the site of (...) private initiatives and public actions, as well as the arena on which private interests and public issues met, clashed and sought reconciliation. In all those respects, the realm of state sovereignty was presumed to be self-contained, selfassertive and self-sufficient. (shrink)
Leading a corporation through a crisis requires rational decision making guided by an ethical approach (Snyder et al., Journal of Business Ethics, 63, 2006, 371). Three such approaches are virtue ethics (Seeger and Ulmer, Journal of Business Ethics, 31, 2001, 369), an ethic of justice, and an ethic of care (Simóla, Journal of Business Ethics, 46, 2003, 351). In this article, I consider the effectiveness of these approaches for leading a corporation after a crisis. The standard I use is drawn (...) from recent studies that examine how people tend to react to corporate unintentional harms. I conclude from these studies that an ethic of care approach is most effective for managing corporate crises when it comes to stakeholder concerns. I conclude the article with strategies for managing a crisis using an ethic of care. (shrink)
Controversy about Lynn White’s thesis that medieval Christianity is to blame for our current environmental crisis has done little to challenge the basic structure of White’s argument and has taken little account of recent work done by medieval scholars. White’s ecotheological critics, in particular, have often failed to come to grips with White’s position. In this paper, I question White’s reading of history on both interpretative and factual grounds and argue that religious values cannot be treated independently of the political, (...) economic, and social conditions that sustain them. I conclude that medieval religious values were more complex than White suggests: rather than causing technological innovation, they more likely provided a justification for other activity taking place for other reasons. (shrink)
A liquid modernity, where the traditional certainties have become fluid and blurred, presents a major challenge for education. The world is changing so quickly that homo sapiens, learning animal par excellence, can no longer rely on strategies acquired through learning experiences, let alone those derived from traditional values or wisdom. The excess of useless information creates a glut. When saturation level is reached, accumulation ceases to be a sign of wealth and becomes undesirable. Knowledge is confined - discarded like refuse (...) - in the infinite capacity of cyber-computers. What should we humans keep and what should we reject in this process? In times of liquid modernity, how and what should our children be taught in order to be able to develop survival strategies throughout their lives? (shrink)
As many authors have acknowledged in these pages, Will Kymlicka has produced an admirable attempt to reconcile the differences of communitarians and liberals. However, Kymlicka's synthesis ignores the aspects of each theory which make his task impossible. Particularly, his analysis rests upon a misleading picture of communitarian community and an incomplete appreciation of the divergent liberal and communitarian understandings of freedom and pluralism. In the process of demonstrating the incompatibility of these theories, the similarities between communitarianism and nationalism are explored.
Theories of the liberal tradition have relied on independence as a norm of personhood. Feminist theorists such as Eva Kittay in Love's Labor have been instrumental in critiquing normative independence. I explore the role of corporeal vulnerability in Kittay's account of personhood, developing a comparison to the role it plays in Thomas Hobbes's Leviathan. Kittay's crucial contribution in Love's Labor is that once we acknowledge the facts of corporeal vulnerability, we must not only acknowledge but also affirm dependency in a (...) genuinely inclusive affirmation of personhood. While endorsing Kittay's “dependency critique,” I discover difficulties that beleaguer Kittay's development of new norms of personhood. I trace these to a dependency of Kittay's account on a crucial premise of the liberal model it resists. I argue that in order to affirm dependency in a manner that departs more thoroughly from the criticized aspects of liberal personhood, we must cease to position it in a dichotomy of power and vulnerability. I suggest that attending to the corporeality of vulnerability can aid us in developing the terms of a discourse affirming relational personhood while undermining that dichotomy. (shrink)
Physicians make some medical decisions without disclosure to their patients. Nondisclosure is possible because these are silent decisions to refrain from screening, diagnostic or therapeutic interventions. Nondisclosure is ethically permissible when the usual presumption that the patient should be involved in decisions is defeated by considerations of clinical utility or patient emotional and physical well-being. Some silent decisions - not all - are ethically justified by this standard. Justified silent decisions are typically dependent on the physician's professional judgment, experience and (...) knowledge, and are not likely to be changed by patient preferences. We condemn the inappropriate exclusion of the patient from the decision-making process. However, if a test or treatment is unlikely to yield a net benefit, disclosure and discussion are at times unnecessary. Appropriate silent decisions are ethically justified by such considerations as patient benefit or economy of time. (shrink)
I begin by reviewing recent research by Merleau-Ponty scholars opposing aspects of the critique of Merleau-Ponty made by Meltzoff and colleagues based on their studies of neonate imitation. I conclude the need for reopening the case for infant self-other indistinction, starting with a re-examination of Merleau-Ponty’s notion of indistinction in the Sorbonne lectures, and attending especially to the role of affect and to the non-exclusivity of self-other distinction and indistinction. In undertaking that study, I discover the importance of understanding self-other (...) distinction and indistinction in terms of their affective significance. For Merleau-Ponty, self-other indistinction is a virtual or imaginary participation in others’ orientations that he defines as an affective phenomenon. Further, Merleau-Ponty’s account of the advent of the body proper—the aspect of the body image that circumscribes the body as a distinct and private space—theorizes it as an affective innovation. Rather than being a fact of which we at first are ignorant and gradually grow to recognize, distinction from others in the sense that is important to Merleau-Ponty is a situation that must be cultivated and maintained through the negotiation of affective intimacy. Understanding indistinction and distinction in terms of the affective forces that sustain them explains how it is possible for them to coexist. (shrink)
Many preventive intervention studies with adolescents address high-risk behaviors such as drug and alcohol use, and unprotected sex. Randomized controlled trials (RCT) are the gold standard methodology used to test the effectiveness of these behavioral interventions. Interventions outside the rigidly described protocol are prohibited. However, there are ethical challenges to implementing inflexible intervention protocols, especially when the target population is young, experiences many stressful events, and lives in a resource-poor environment. Teens who are at high risk for substance use or (...) sexual risk behaviors tend to be at risk for other problems such as exposure to violence, sexual and physical abuse, depression, and homelessness. How should investigators deal with the psychological and social needs of teenagers in prevention programs in an ethically appropriate way and at the same time preserve the validity of RCT results? We have identified program characteristics, participant characteristics, interaction with parents, and problems with adolescents not in the study as sources of ethical dilemmas in RCT with at-risk adolescents. As a result of our experience, we recommend that every behavioral intervention study develop an ethics protocol, which should include rules for providing help to participants, has contact information for experts to provide guidance, and an emergency procedure for dealing with life threatening situations. In addition, studies should have a resource manual, train research staff in these ethical issues, and work with a data safety and monitoring board or ethics committee. (shrink)
We study logical systems for reasoning about equations involving recursive definitions. In particular, we are interested in "propositional" fragments of the functional language of recursion FLR [18, 17], i.e., without the value passing or abstraction allowed in FLR. The "pure," propositional fragment FLR 0 turns out to coincide with the iteration theories of . Our main focus here concerns the sharp contrast between the simple class of valid identities and the very complex consequence relation over several natural classes of models.
Background Continued advances in human microbiome research and technologies raise a number of ethical, legal, and social challenges. These challenges are associated not only with the conduct of the research, but also with broader implications, such as the production and distribution of commercial products promising maintenance or restoration of good physical health and disease prevention. In this article, we document several ethical, legal, and social challenges associated with the commercialization of human microbiome research, focusing particularly on how this research is (...) mobilized within economic markets for new public health uses. Methods We conducted in-depth, semi-structured interviews (2009–2010) with 63 scientists, researchers, and National Institutes of Health project leaders (“investigators”) involved with human microbiome research. Interviews explored a range of ethical, legal, and social dimensions of human microbiome research, including investigators’ perspectives on commercialization. Using thematic content analysis, we identified and analyzed emergent themes and patterns. Results Investigators discussed the commercialization of human microbiome research in terms of (1) commercialization, probiotics, and issues of safety, (2) public awareness of the benefits and risks of dietary supplements, and (3) regulation. Conclusion The prevailing theme of ethical, legal, social concern focused on the need to find a balance between the marketplace, scientific research, and the public’s health. The themes we identified are intended to serve as points for discussions about the relationship between scientific research and the manufacture and distribution of over-the-counter dietary supplements in the United States. (shrink)
While improving the theoretical account of base-rate neglect, Barbey & Sloman's (B&S's) target article suffers from affect neglect by failing to consider the fundamental role of emotional processes in decisions. We illustrate how affective influences are fundamental to decision making, and discuss how the dual process model can be a useful framework for understanding hot and cold cognition in reasoning.
Attitudes towards active voluntary euthanasia (AVE) and physician-assisted suicide (PAS) among 1,238 doctors on the medical register of New South Wales varied significantly with self-identified religious affiliation. More doctors without formal religious affiliation ('non-theists') were sympathetic to AVE, and acknowledged that they had practised AVE, than were doctors who gave any religious affiliation ('theists'). Of those identifying with a religion, those who reported a Protestant affiliation were intermediate in their attitudes and practices between the agnostic/atheist and the Catholic groups. Catholics (...) recorded attitudes most opposed to AVE, but even so, 18 per cent of Catholic medical respondents who had been so requested, recorded that they had taken active steps to bring about the death of patients. (shrink)
To measure the life `as it is' by a life `as it might or should be' is a defining, constitutive feature of humanity. The urge to transcend is nearest to a universal, and arguably the least destructible, attribute of human existence. This cannot be said, however, of its articulations into `projects' - that is, of cohesive and comprehensive programmes of change and of visions of life that the change is hoped to bring about - visions that stand out of reality, (...) adumbrating a fully and truly different, alternative world. For the constantly present transgressive urge to be articulated into such projects, some less common conditions must arise. Utopia is one of the forms such uncommon articulations may take. This article explores the conditions that defined that form - those of modernity in its initial `solid' stage, a form that was marked and set apart from other articulations of the transgression urge by two remarkable attributes: territoriality and finality. It is concluded that in the transgressive imagination of `liquid modernity' the `place' (whether physical or social) has been replaced by the unending sequence of new beginnings, inconsequentiality of deeds has been substituted for fixity of order, and the desire for a different today has elbowed out concern with a better tomorrow. (shrink)
The target article argues for the modularity of language interpretive processes without the usual criterion that a module be informationally encapsulated. It is the encapsulation criterion, however, that gives modularity most of its testability. Without the criterion of encapsulation, testing whether relatively automatic comprehension processes use their own unique resource is a very tricky matter.
A fundamental tenet of the process philosophy founded by alfred north whitehead and charles hartshorne is that god's causal agency in the world is solely "persuasive," in contradistinction to much of traditional christian theism which portrays a more "coercive" god. The article, However, Seeks to show that hartshorne's God would appear to be somewhat coercive, E.G., In the imposition of the natural laws which are the limits to creaturely freedom and in the "luring" of creaturely actualizations of novel possibilities within (...) those limits. Divine coercion seems to be both a fact and a necessity in hartshorne's metaphysics, Despite his explicit denials. (shrink)
The Left is characterized by its lack of humor. This has set it apart from other forms of opposition to capitalism, e.g., avant-garde art. The latter's irony, self-mockery, and playfulness was a Ièse-majesté to the Left as much as it was to the priests of the establishment. Épater-le-bourgeois has never been a Left strategy, because the Left has treated le bourgeois seriously as the author of a project the Left diought worth fulfilling and as the hindrance to its fulfilment at (...) the same time. The Left was and remained until recently the counter-culture of capitalism. Ecologically it could only come into being once capitalist culture launched a program geared towards achieving a rational society. (shrink)
This paper revisits the historical sequence in which some of the major developments of 20th-century physics occurred, and explores how theories could have turned out differently, if the sequence of developments had been different. It shows how a delay in founding special relativity theory until after (1) at least one puzzling problem in electromagnetic theory could be acknowledged, and (2) sat least some of the experimental observations pertinent to the development of quantum mechanics had become well known, could have resulted (...) in a larger theory that covers both domains in a manner quite different from that of any of the theories we use today. The revised theory dispenses with a separate postulate introducing Planck’s constant h, identifying instead a physical mechanism that implies the constant. Some important aspects of quantum chemistry then follow. (shrink)