In 1980 L. M. de Rijk edited some texts connected with medieval disputation ( Die mittelaterlichen Traktate De modo opponendi et respondendi ), towards which he showed a strikingly contemptuous attitude. The reason for his contempt was that the treatises did not fit the obligationes and sophismata tradition. In this article I focus on the original version, the Thesaurus Philosophorum , to highlight the distinction of this family of treatises with respect to the “modern“ tradition. First, I (...) study the features of the disputation that can be recognised through the collection of fallacious arguments contained in the Thesaurus . Second, I briefly examine the contents of the treatise and their arrangement, showing that they are closely related to the kind of disputation in question. I hope to support the idea that neither the technique of disputation nor the contents and their arrangement deserve a straightforward rejection. (shrink)
In earlier work, I have presented an interpretation of Obligationes as logical games of consistency maintenance; this interpretation has some advantages, in particular that of capturing the multi-agent, goal-oriented, rule-governed nature of the enterprise by means of the game analogy. But it has as its main limitation the fact that it does not provide a satisfactory account of the deontic aspect of the framework—i.e. of what being obliged to a certain statement consists in. In order to remedy this shortcoming, (...) this paper argues for the more encompassing thesis that Obligationes can be viewed as a theory of rational dialogical practices, in particular concerning the management of one's discursive commitments. The main inspiration for this interpretation comes from R. Brandom's inferentialist, normative pragmatism, but more generally, it relies heavily on a dialogical conception of logic. I argue that it offers a more compelling account of several aspects of the obligational framework, in particular the role of doubting responses and the ubiquity of obligational vocabulary in the context of scientific discourse in the medieval tradition. (shrink)
A spirit of disintegration and disunity is conspicuous on the contemporary social, as well as philosophical scene. There is a celebration of fragments and differences. In such a scenario, no less than a person like Amartya Sen, an eminent economist and a Noble Laureate rose to the occasion and traced out the roots and the space for a democratic discourse that has been sustained in the Indian philosophical tradition. It is laudable that he opened up a discussion that will (...) strengthen the democratic spirit which is missing in the present. This paper examines the ‘dialogic tradition’ projected by Amartya Sen in his Argumentative Indian (2005). (shrink)
The existence of a Catholic Intellectual Tradition (CIT) is not a given, as arguments contra are in balance with arguments pro. An intellectual tradition consists of a style of thought and of a worldview, as its formal and material modes. The former defines the way knowledge is appropriated, processed, and passed on whereas the latter amounts to its applications to various regions of reality – God, man, morality, society, the Church, etc. A model of the CIT is proposed (...) that consists of principles differentiated by the degree of centrality they have in a topological structure. The paper asserts the existence of a CIT because a non-stipulative, non-trivial, and non-circular case can be made for it. (shrink)
Rooted in real world observations, this book questions the concept of tradition In his introduction, Nezar AlSayyad discusses the meanings of the word 'tradition' and the current debates about the 'end of tradition'. Thereafter the book is divided into three parts. The three chapters in Part I explore the inextricable link between 'tradition' and 'modern', revealing the geopolitical implications of this link. Part II looks at tradition as a process of invention and here the (...) three chapters are all concerned with the making of landscapes and landscape myths, showing how the spectacle of history can be aestheticized and naturalized. Finally, Part III shows how tradition is a regime, programmed and policed and how it has been deployed, resisted, and reworked through hegemonic struggles that seek to create both built environments and citizen-subjects. (shrink)
Introduction: Ancient & modern : the braid of Cassiodorus -- Tradition, literacy and change -- Church versus scripture : the idea of biblical tradition -- Revolution and tradition -- Re-envisioning the past : metaphors and symbols of tradition -- Inventing Christian culture : Volney, Chateaubriand and the French Revolution -- Herder, Schleiermacher, Novalis and Schlegel : the idea of a Christian Europe -- Translating Herder : the idea of Protestant Reformation -- Keble and the Anglican (...) class='Hi'>tradition -- Newman and the development of tradition -- Arnold : taking religion out of religion -- Radical tradition : theologizing Eliot -- Epilogue: Re-energizing the past -- Appendix: Velázquez and the royal boar hunt. (shrink)
The concept of "practices"--whether of representation, of political or scientific traditions, or of organizational culture--is central to social theory. In this book, Stephen Turner presents the first analysis and critique of the idea of practice as it has developed in the various theoretical traditions of the social sciences and the humanities. Understood broadly as a tacit understanding "shared" by a group, the concept of a practice has a fatal difficulty, Turner argues: there is no plausible mechanism by which a "practice" (...) is transmitted or reproduced. The historical uses of the concept, from Durkheim to Kripke's version of Wittgenstein, provide examples of the contortions that thinkers have been forced into by this problem, and show the ultimate implausibility of the idea. Turner's conclusion sketches a picture of what happens when we do without the notion of a shared practice, and how this bears on social theory and philosophy. It explains why social theory cannot get beyond the stage of constructing fuzzy analogies, and why the standard constructions of the contemporary philosophical problem of relativism depend upon this defective notion. This first book-length critique of practice theory is sure to stir discussion and controversy in a wide range of fields, from philosophy and science studies to sociology, anthropology, literary studies, and political and legal theory. (shrink)
In this paper I will examine the relation between the theory of obligations and its use in sophismatic contexts through the lens of certain pragmatic concerns. In order to do this, I will take a sophism discussed by Peter of Mantua in his treatise on obligations as a case-study. I will first provide a brief outline of the structure of the treatise and then examine a concrete case that shows how the relationship between background assumptions (casus and context of utterance) (...) and criteria of response seems to suggest a way to qualify the application of general rules (especially for irrelevant sentences) in certain limit-cases. By discussing Peter's presentation of the sophism, I will also argue for a connection between Peter of Mantua's text and Mesino de Codronchi's Questiones on the De Interpretatione. (shrink)
Why should inhabitants of a postmodern world commit to a contingent tradition? This essay reviews Alasdair MacIntyre’s proposals for tradition constituted-enquiry and compares his account with Polanyi’s ideas focusing on tacit knowing.
Michael Polanyi and Karl Popper offer contrasting accounts of social tradition. Popper is steeped in the heritage of the Enlightenment, while Polanyi interweaves religious and diverse secular strands of thought. Explaining the liberal tradition, Polanyi features tacit knowledge of rules, standards, applications and interpretations being transmitted by “craftsmen” to “apprentices.” Each generation adopts the liberal tradition on “faith,” commits to creatively developing its art of knowledge-in-practice, and is drawn to the spiritual reality of ideal ends. Of particular (...) interest to Popper is the rationality of social traditions. Likened by him to scientific theories, Popper’s traditions are criticizable and improvable, assisting agents to understand, and act in, the world as stable and predictable. Polanyi’s is the more informative rendering of tradition. Polanyi delves deeply into important areas where Popper only scratches their surface: the tacit dimension, transmission by way of apprenticeship, the meaning of tradition for those who participate in it, and the extent of its authority over them. (shrink)
Michael Polanyi made an original contribution in his reflections on tradition within the scientific community. Starting with his Riddell Lectures (Science, Faith and Society), he considered the role of authority and the transmission of tacit knowledge within the scientific community, an analysis that can be extended to other, often contrasting, realms of intellectual life.
In his post-critical philosophy, Polanyi challenges the intellectual trend in modern western philosophy which exalted critical reason and denigrated the uncritical elements of knowing, such as belief, tradion and authority. In this paper, the author focuses on Polanyi’s thoughts on tradition, authority and originality in a post-critical perspective. On the one hand, Polanyi, against modern critical philosophy, fulluy acknowledges the important role played by tradition and authority in science, on the other hand, he also tries to show the (...) tension and the deep unity between tradition, authority and originality. (shrink)
Valuing -- Morality and reasonable partiality -- Doing and allowing -- The division of moral labour : egalitarian liberalism as moral pluralism -- Is the basic structure basic? -- Cosmopolitanism, justice, and institutions -- What is egalitarianism? -- Choice, circumstance, and the value of equality -- Is terrorism morally distinctive? -- Immigration and the significance of culture -- The normativity of tradition -- The good of toleration.
The tradition of natural law is one of the foundations of Western civilization. At its heart is the conviction that there is an objective and universal justice which transcends humanity’s particular expressions of justice. It asserts that there are certain ways of behaving which are appropriate to humanity simply by virtue of the fact that we are all human beings. Recent political debates indicate that it is not a tradition that has gone unchallenged: in fact, the opposition is (...) as old as the tradition itself. By distinguishing between philosophy and ideology, by recalling the historical adventures of natural law, and by reviewing the theoretical problems involved in the doctrine, Simon clarifies much of the confusion surrounding this perennial debate. He tackles the questions raised by the application of natural law with skill and honesty as he faces the difficulties of the subject. Simon warns against undue optimism in a revival of interest in natural law and insists that the study of natural law beings with the analysis of “the law of the land.” He writes not as a polemicist but as a philosopher, and he writes of natural law with the same force, conciseness, lucidity and simplicity which have distinguished all his other works. (shrink)
Medieval philosophy is often presented as the outcome of a large scale encounter between the Christian tradition and the Greek philosophical one. This picture, however, inappropriately tends to leave out the active role played by the medieval authors themselves and their institutional contexts. The theme of the mental language provides us with an interesting case study in such matters. The paper first introduces a few technical notions—'theme', 'tradition', 'textual chain' and 'textual borrowing'—, and then focuses on precise passages (...) about mental language from Anselm of Canterbury, Albert the Great and William of Ockham. All three authors in effect identify some relevant Augustinian idea (that of 'mental word', most saliently) with some traditional philosophical one (such as that of 'concept' or that of 'logos endiathetos'). But the gist of the operation widely varies along the line and the tradition encounter is staged in each case with specific goals and interests in view. The use of ancient authoritative texts with respect to mental language is thus shown to be radically transformed from the eleventh to the fourteenth century. (shrink)
This major publication is a history of the semantic tradition in philosophy from the early nineteenth century through its incarnation in the work of the Vienna Circle, the group of logical positivists that emerged in the years 1925-1935 in Vienna who were characterised by a strong commitment to empiricism, a high regard for science, and a conviction that modern logic is the primary tool of analytic philosophy. In the first part of the book, Alberto Coffa traces the roots of (...) logical positivism in a semantic tradition that arose in opposition to Kant's theory that a priori knowledge is based on pure intuition and the constitutive powers of the mind. In Part II, Coffa chronicles the development of this tradition by members and associates of the Vienna Circle. Much of Coffa's analysis draws on the unpublished notes and correspondence of many philosophers. The book, however, is not merely a history of the semantic tradition from Kant 'to the Vienna Station'. Coffa also critically reassesses the role of semantic notions in understanding the ground of a priori knowledge and its relation to empirical knowledge and questions the turn the tradition has taken since Vienna. (shrink)
Hart identified a utilitarian tradition in jurisprudence, which he associated with Jeremy Bentham and John Austin. This tradition consisted in three doctrines: the separation of law and morals; the analysis of legal concepts; and the imperative theory of law. I argue, contrary to Hart, that Bentham did not adopt a 'positivist' conception of law whether understood in terms of the separation of legal theory and morality or in terms of the separation of law and morals. Misinterpreting Bentham's approach (...) to the analysis of language, Hart was wrong to assume that Bentham's jurisprudential project was a precursor to his own attempt to provide a morally neutral description of a legal system. It was this assumption that led to mistakes in Hart's editing of Of Laws in General. Bentham's utilitarian theory of law should be recognised as a distinct alternative to Common Law and Natural Law theories. (shrink)
Challenging prevailing interpretations of the development of modern philosophy, this book proposes a reinterpretation of the transcendental tradition, as represented primarily by Kant and Husserl, and counters Heidegger's influential reading of these philosophers. Author David Carr defends their subtle and complex transcendental investigations of the self and the life of subjectivity, and seeks to revive an understanding of what Husserl calls "the paradox of subjectivity"--an appreciation for the rich and sometimes contradictory character of experience.
This essay is an attempt to assess critically the wax and gold tradition as a philosophical foundation of Ethiopian hermeneutics. In the first part, I shall analyze the wax and gold tradition as a poetic and literary tradition. After exploring how this tradition has shaped social and political interaction in the second part, in the third part I will show the implications of the wax and gold tradition for hermeneutics. I shall then make a critical (...) assessment of the wax and gold tradition as an interpretive philosophy before closing the essay with concluding remarks. (shrink)
Confucianism conceives of persons as being necessarily interdependent, defining personhood in terms of the various roles one embodies and that are established by the relationships basic to one's life. By way of contrast, the Western philosophical tradition has predominantly defined persons in terms of intrinsic characteristics not thought to depend on others. This more strictly and explicitly individualistic concept of personhood contrasts with the Confucian idea that one becomes a person because of others; where one is never a person (...) independently or in and of oneself but develops into one only in community. This article surveys some differences between Confucian and Western ideas of self and their connection to ethics mainly in light of the relational self of the Confucian Analects and Mencius . A Philosophy Compass article called Confucianism and Ethics in the Western Philosophical Tradition II: A Comparative Analysis of Personhood will follow, that examines how the more individualistic way of conceiving of personhood in the West has had moral and political implications that differ, and even conflict, with those of Confucianism. (shrink)
While it is clear that the Gadamer–Habermas debate has had a major influence on Paul Ricoeur, his commentators have had little to say about the nature of this influence. I try to remedy this silence by showing that Ricoeur''s account of tradition is a direct response to the Gadamer–Habermas debate. First, I briefly explain the debate''s importance and describe Ricoeur''s reaction to it. Next, I show how his discussion of tradition in Time and Narrative steers a middle course (...) between Gadamerian hermeneutics and Habermasian Ideologiekritik. Finally, I raise some critical questions about the adequacy of Ricoeur''s middle course. Specifically, I argue that it rests on an implausible distinction between the form and the content of tradition. (shrink)
Early Buddhist Metaphysics provides a philosophical account of the major doctrinal shift in the history of early Theravada tradition in India: the transition from the earliest stratum of Buddhist thought to the systematic and allegedly scholastic philosophy of the Pali Abhidhamma movement. Entwining comparative philosophy and Buddhology, the author probes the Abhidhamma's metaphysical transition in terms of the Aristotelian tradition and vis-à-vis modern philosophy, exploits Western philosophical literature from Plato to contemporary texts in the fields of philosophy of (...) mind and cultural criticism. (shrink)
This essay argues that the ambiguities of the just war tradition, sifted through a feminist critique, provides the best framework currently available for translating the ethical entitlement to human dignity into concrete feminist political practices. It offers a gendered critique of war that pursues the just war distinction between legitimate and illegitimate targets of wartime violence and provides a gendered analysis of the peace which the just war tradition obliges us to preserve and pursue.
This paper addresses the question about the understanding of the history of continental philosophy by tracing a tradition in which this philosophy figures itself in relation to futurity. This is considered in relation to the distinct ways in which futurity is a question for Kant, Hegel and Nietzsche.
In this paper I shall discuss the relationship between the two known Arabic translations of Aristotle’s Posterior Analytics and Avicenna’s Kitāb al-Burhān. I shall argue that Avicenna relies on both (1) Abū Bishr Mattā’s translation and (2) the anonymous translation used by Averroes in the Long Commentary as well as in the Middle Commentary (and also indirectly preserved by Gerard of Cremona’s Latin translation of Aristotle’s work). Although, generally speaking, the problem is relevant to the history of the transmission of (...) the Posterior Analytics from Greek through Syriac into Arabic, I do not intend to give a systematic presentation of the historical setting in which Aristotle’s work became readily available to the Arabo-Islamic culture. My aim here is rather to isolate and discuss some pieces of evidence concerning the texts that seem to have been available to Avicenna. In addition to that, I shall also provide evidence concerning the relationship with the Greek commentary tradition (in particular Philoponus and Themistius) that is likely to have influenced Avicenna in his discussion of Aristotle’s theory of demonstration and scientific knowledge. (shrink)
In this paper I explore a positivist methodological tradition in early demand theory, as exemplified by several common traits that I draw from the works of V. Pareto, H. L. Moore and H. Schultz. Assuming a current approach to explanation in the social sciences, I will discuss the building of their various explanans, showing that the three authors agreed on two distinctive methodological features: the exclusion of any causal commitment to psychology when explaining individual choice and the mandate to (...) test the truth of demand theory on aggregate data by statistical means. However, I also contend, from an epistemological point of view, that the truth of demand theory was conceived of in three different ways by our authors. Inspired by Poincaré, Pareto assumed that many different theories could account for the same data on individual choice, coming close to a kind of conventionalism -though I prefer to refer to this position as theoreticism. Moore was himself akin to Pearson's approach, which could be named descriptivist insofar as it resolved scientific laws into statistical descriptions of the data. Finally, Schultz tried to reconcile both approaches in an adequationist stance with no success, as we shall see. (shrink)
The spectre of Descartes figured as a perpetual presence in much of twentieth century philosophy, but nearly always as an emblem for positions to be avoided. Cartesian foundationalism in epistemology, the ontological dualism of mind and body, the associated conception of the mind as a substance, and as a “thing that thinks” – all these have figured in recent philosophy as positions to be refuted or simply renounced, the absurda in one or another reductio argument. But for one prominent twentieth (...) century tradition the story is much more nuanced and complex. Twentieth century phenomenology, which began to stir as a well-defined movement in the last decade of the nineteenth century and has persisted in one form or another into the twenty-first, found in Descartes much more a causa belli than the usual bête noire. As a first approximation we can say that allegiance to Cartesianism divided the phenomenological tradition. Edmund Husserl, who along with Franz Brentano is usually acknowledged as the founder of the phenomenological movement, described Descartes as “the genuine patriarch of phenomenology”; he dubbed his own transcendental phenomenology as “a new, twentieth century Cartesianism”, and insisted that “the only fruitful renaissance is the one which reawakens [Descartes’] Meditations” (Husserl 1929/1964, 3, 5). But Husserl’s most important assistant, Martin Heidegger, rebelled against the Cartesian legacy in modern philosophy, which he saw as the central wrong-turn in modern thought, and as the chief obstacle to a faithful phenomenology and phenomenologically informed ontology. The cogito sum, Heidegger insisted, must be “phenomenologically destroyed” (Heidegger 1927/1962, 123). In Descartes himself Heidegger found “an extreme.. (shrink)
The Islamic philosophical tradition was the privileged site for the study and continuation of the Classical philosophical tradition in the Middle Ages. An initial chapter on the history of Islamic philosophy sets the stage for sixteen articles on issues across the Islamic, Jewish and Christian traditions. The goal is to see the Islamic tradition in its own richness and complexity as the context of much Jewish intellectual work. Taken together, these two traditions provide the wider context to (...) which Latin Christian intellectuals would turn. The articles are grouped under six topics relevant both to the period and to current philosophical interest: the Islamic philosophical context, the nature of philosophy in the Middle Ages, Neoplatonism and the activity of the soul, creation, virtue, and the Latin reception. Since the nineteenth century Islamic and Jewish philosophy have been neglected in the standard histories of medieval philosophy. The time is right to begin to write a more balanced history of medieval philosophy. In order to begin to write this history, this book focuses on the Islamic, Jewish, and Christian use of - and reaction to - Classical philosophy during the Middle Ages. (shrink)
This Philosophy Compass article continues the comparison between Confucian and mainstream Western views of personhood and their connection with ethics begun in Confucianism and Ethics in the Western Philosophical Tradition I: Fundamental Concepts , by focusing on the Western self conceived as an independent agent with moral and political rights. More specifically, the present article briefly accounts for how the more strictly and explicitly individualistic notion of self dominating Western philosophy has developed, leading up to a recent debate in (...) modern Western rights theory between Herbert Fingarette and Henry Rosemont, Jr., two contemporary Western philosophers who are both steeped in Confucian thought as well as moral and political philosophy. This discussion elucidates how Confucianism can be compared to, and even contrasted with some basic principles of modern Western rights theory and the more individualistic view of self they entail. In the end, a new view of personhood and "free will"? is offered that synthesizes insights from the Confucian treatment of persons as being essentially interdependent with the Western treatment of persons as being essentially independent. (shrink)
Due to the influence of Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) and Gottlob Frege (1848–1925), twentieth-century philosophers have devoted a great deal of attention to questions concerning the logic and metaphysics of relations. But systematic philosophical interest in relations does not originate in the twentieth century. On the contrary, it originates in antiquity, dating back at least to Aristotle’s short treatise, the Categories.1 In the Categories, Aristotle attempts to provide a philosophical account of relations (or relatives, ta pros ti) as part of an (...) overall inventory of the basic kinds of things there are (onta). He identifies relations as one of the ten irreducible kinds of being, and devotes an entire chapter—the seventh chapter of the treatise—to analyzing their nature and ontological status. Aristotle’s discussion in Categories 7 provides the starting point for a long and rich tradition of thinking about relations, one which stems from antiquity, runs through the Middle Ages, and eventually makes its way into the early modern period. Despite the prominence of.. (shrink)
The author extends theory on the relationship between workplace spirituality and business ethics by integrating the "yamas" from yoga, a venerable Eastern spiritual tradition, with existing literature. The yamas are five practices for harmonizing and deepening social connections that can be applied in the workplace. A theoretical framework is developed and two sets of propositions are forwarded. One set emanates from the yamas and another one conjectures relationships between spirituality and business ethics surfaced by the application of these spiritual (...) practices from yoga. (shrink)
Edward Shils presented his book Tradition (1981) as the first extensive study of the subject. This article casts light on Shils' multifaceted understanding of tradition, comprising pragmatic, Burkean, veridical, and evolutionist perspectives. His typology of traditions is noted, and his view of institutional bearers of tradition described. In assessing Shils' theory, however, we find that it overreaches, collapsing differences that exist between traditions, transmissions, and the traditional. Key Words: tradition transmission rationalization antitradition (...) science. (shrink)
MacIntyre’s critique of liberalism relies crucially on a distinctive moral particularism, for which morality and rationality are fundamentally tradition-constituted. In light of this, some have detected in his work a moral relativism, radically in tension with his endorsement of a Thomist universalism. I dispute this reading, arguing instead that MacIntyre is a consistent universalist who pays due attention to the moral-epistemic importance of traditions. Analysing his teleological understanding of rational enquiry, I argue that this approach shows how it is (...) possible, dialectically, to reconcile the particularity of our starting-points with the assertion of universal truths. What MacIntyre offers, I contend, is a moral universalism that avoids the pitfalls of its liberal counterpart, and invites an important meta-theoretical shift with respect to the scope for toleration and social critique and toleration in contemporary pluralist society. (shrink)
In this study, Levin explores Plato's engagement with the Greek literary tradition in his treatment of key linguistic issues. This investigation, conjoined with a new interpretation of the Republic's familiar critique of poets, supports the view that Plato's work represents a valuable precedent for contemporary reflections on ways in which philosophy might benefit from appeals to literature.
Abstract If we define tradition too hastily we leave to one side the question of what the relevance of tradition is for us . Here the concept of tradition is opened up by considering the different views of it taken by Hannah Arendt, Michael Oakeshott and Alasdair MacIntyre. We see that each has put tradition into a fully developed picture of what our predicament is in modernity; and that each has differed in their assessment of what (...) our relation to tradition is or should be. Arendt sees tradition as something which no longer conditions action, Oakeshott sees tradition as something which conditions all action, and MacIntyre sees tradition as something which should condition right action. In each case, the view of tradition is clearly one element in an attempt to see how the most important constituent elements of human existence - variously called the human condition, human conduct, or human virtue - should be understood in a modernity which is ours because it has put the traditional concept of tradition into question. (shrink)
This paper examines Hermann Cohen's idiosyncratic construction of a medieval Jewish philosophical tradition, focusing primarily, though not exclusively, on his Charakteristik der Ethik Maimunis . This construction, not unlike modern accounts, is filtered through the central place of Maimonides. For Cohen, however, Maimonides' centrality is defined not by his systematization of Aristotelianism, but by his elevation of ethics over metaphysics. The ethical and pantheistic concerns of Maimonides' precursors, according to this reading, anticipate his uniqueness. Whereas Shlomo ibn Gabirol's pantheistic (...) doctrine of emanation, for example, assigned little weight to ethics, Abraham ibn Daud rebelled against such a doctrine. Ibn Daud—much like Bahya ibn Paquda and Abraham ibn Ezra—becomes part of a Jewish philosophical tradition that culminates in Maimonides' rejection of Aristotelian metaphysics. In particular, this paper examines the way in which Cohen envisaged the pre-Maimonidean philosophical tradition, putting his highly critical reading of Shlomo ibn Gabirol and his pantheistic obsession with prime matter in counterpoint with his more favorable readings of Abraham ibn Daud and Bahya ibn Paquda. (shrink)
Alasdair MacIntyre criticises the ethics of modernity as fallacious, and wants it replaced by Aristotelian virtue ethics. He is particularly critical concerning modernity’s non-contextual understanding of reason, and wants to renew the ethical significance of concepts like tradition and context.
This paper presents criticisms of the method for moral and political philosophy known as ?reflective equilibrium? (RE), or in its fuller form ?wide reflective equilibrium? (WRE). This negative purpose has an ulterior positive aim: to set off, by favourable contrast, an alternative approach based on analogical argument as an instrument of an evolving (liberal) tradition. WRE derives from John Rawls but has been broadly endorsed. Though a meta?theory, it involves a certain way of construing liberalism. This essay's target is (...) in key part that construal. It seeks an approach to moral?political philosophy, and to liberalism in particular, that is at once rationally grounded and contextually oriented, and provides for explanation as well as justification. WRE fails on all counts, plus others. Section I presents WRE and suggests the alternative. Section II presents the critique of WRE, partly drawing on established criticisms and partly presenting new ones. Section III opposes the application suggested for WRE by (surprisingly) a critic of Rawls, M. Sandel. The preferability of the analogical alternative is demonstrated throughout. (shrink)
This essay connects Kafka's German and his Jewish linguistic sources, and explores the trans-national perspective on literary tradition they helped him create. I begin with a critique of Deleuze and Guattari's view of Kafka as a minority writer, showing how their cold war nationalism scants the positive contributions that Yiddish and Hebrew made to his work. I continue with an examination of the "twilight of containment," when this postcontemporary Kafka began to break through his cold war canonization after 1989. (...) Other sections include: "German-Jewish Traditions: The Echoes of Yiddish," on Kafka's cultural politics; "Hebrew: Zionism in a Transnational Key"; and "Goethe's Jewish Voices," on Yiddish as a model for Kafka's new conception of national writing. I conclude by considering the Jewish and other sources of Kafka's "linguistic turn," and the general, transnational focus on tradition that Jewish languages brought to his classic texts. (shrink)
In this introductory paper I sketch the tradition, several early aspects of which are discussed in the following essays and reviews. I introduce the main figures whose work initiated and maintained the sociological orientation in Hungarian philosophy thereby tracing its evolution. I suggest that its sociological outlook, if taken to be a characteristic tendency that gives Hungarian philosophy its distinctive flavour, provides us with the framework of a possible narrative about the history of Hungarian philosophy in the broader context (...) of Central European philosophy. This narrative, in turn, suggests a way of integrating the latter into the history of Western philosophy rather than restricting its scope to a handful of canonical works only. (shrink)
Pre-eminent among European political philosophers, Norberto Bobbio has throughout his career turned to the political theory of Thomas Hobbes. Gathered here for the first time are the most important of his essays which together provide both a valuable introduction to Hobbes's thought and a fresh understanding of Hobbes's place in the theory of modern politics. Tracing Hobbes's work through De Cive and Leviathan , Bobbio identifies the philosopher's relation to the tradition of natural law. That Hobbes must now be (...) understood in both this tradition as well as in the seemingly contradictory positivist tradition becomes clear for the first time in Bobbio's account. Bobbio also demonstrates that Hobbes cannot be easily labelled "liberal" or "totalitarian" in Bobbio's provocative analysis of Hobbes's justification of the state, Hobbes emerges as a true conservative. Though his primary concern is to reconstruct the inner logic of Hobbes's thought, Bobbio is also attentive to the philosopher's biography and weaves into his analysis details of Hobbes's life and world--his exile in France, his relation with the Mersenne circle, his disputes with Anglican bishops, and accusations of heresy leveled against him. The result is a revealing, thoroughly new portrait of the first theorist of the modern state. (shrink)
This paper offers a reading of Heidegger''s 1931 lectures on Aristotle''s Metaphysics, Theta 1-3 that relates that discussion to Heidegger''s later work on The Question Concerning Technology and then, more briefly, to contemporary philosophical discussions of ecological issues. This reading is intended to open the possibility of using Heidegger''s re-interpretation of Aristotle as a source within the Western European tradition for understanding our relationship to the natural world in a way that could provide the philosophical tools for addressing ecological (...) problems more adequately and effectively. (shrink)
Introduction : reading Nietzsche skeptically -- Nietzsche and the Pyrrhonian tradition -- Skepticism in Nietzsche's early work : the case of "on truth and lie" -- The question of Nietzsche's "naturalism" -- Perspectivism and Ephexis in interpretation -- Skepticism and health -- Skepticism as immoralism.
ABSTRACT. May scientists rely on substantive, a priori presuppositions? Quinean naturalists say "no," but Michael Friedman and others claim that such a view cannot be squared with the actual history of science. To make his case, Friedman offers Newton's universal law of gravitation and Einstein's theory of relativity as examples of admired theories that both employ presuppositions (usually of a mathematical nature), presuppositions that do not face empirical evidence directly. In fact, Friedman claims that the use of such presuppositions is (...) a hallmark of "science as we know it." But what should we say about the special sciences, which typically do not rely on the abstruse formalisms one finds in the exact sciences? I identify a type of a priori presupposition that plays an especially striking role in the development of empirical psychology. These are ontological presuppositions about the type of object a given science purports to study. I show how such presuppositions can be both a priori and rational by investigating their role in an early flap over psychology's contested status as a natural science. The flap focused on one of the field's earliest textbooks, William James's Principles of Psychology. The work was attacked precisely for its reliance on a priori presuppositions about what James had called the "mental state," psychology's (alleged) proper object. I argue that the specific presuppositions James packed into his definition of the "mental state" were not directly responsible to empirical evidence, and so in that sense were a priori; but the presuppositions were rational in that they were crafted to help overcome philosophical objections (championed by neo-Hegelians) to the very idea that there can be a genuine science of mind. Thus, my case study gives an example of substantive, a priori presuppositions being put to use—to rational use—in the special sciences. In addition to evaluating James's use of presuppositions, my paper also offers historical reflections on two different strands of pragmatist philosophy of science. One strand, tracing back through Quine to C. S. Peirce, is more naturalistic, eschewing the use of a priori elements in science. The other strand, tracing back through Kuhn and C. I. Lewis to James, is more friendly to such presuppositions, and to that extent bears affinity with the positivist tradition Friedman occupies. (shrink)
Abstract. Augustine, and following him some major theologians of the early Christian church, noted the apparent discrepancies between the first two chapters of Genesis and suggested an interpretation for these chapters significantly different from the literal. After examining a selection of the relevant texts, we shall follow the later fortunes of this interpretation in brief outline, figuring in particular an unlikely trio: Suarez, St. George Mivart, and Thomas Henry Huxley. Moral: Darwinian theory might plausibly be construed as implementing, unawares, a (...) suggestion from that other Christian tradition. (shrink)
Franciscan biocentrism is the view that Francis of Assisi is a biocentrist who holds that all living things have intrinsic value. Recently, biocentric theorists Sterba and Taylor have modified biocentrism to accommodate holistic entities. I consider thinkers from the broader Franciscan intellectual tradition (Bonaventure and Scotus) to see whether Franciscan biocentrism can be similarly modified. I discuss notions from these medieval philosophers such as the Cosmic Christ and the concept of haecceitas. I also explore whether Franciscan biocentrism can provide (...) a satisfactory response to the problem of evil, since Franciscan biocentrism faces an issue that secular biocentrism does not: making sense of extinction. (shrink)
What is logical relevance? Anderson and Belnap say that the “modern classical tradition [,] stemming from Frege and Whitehead-Russell, gave no consideration whatsoever to the classical notion of relevance.” But just what is this classical notion? I argue that the relevance tradition is implicitly most deeply concerned with the containment of truth-grounds, less deeply with the containment of classes, and least of all with variable sharing in the Anderson–Belnap manner. Thus modern classical logicians such as Peirce, Frege, Russell, (...) Wittgenstein, and Quine are implicit relevantists on the deepest level. In showing this, I reunite two fields of logic which, strangely from the traditional point of view, have become basically separated from each other: relevance logic and diagram logic. I argue that there are two main concepts of relevance, intensional and extensional. The first is that of the relevantists, who overlook the presence of the second in modern classical logic. The second is the concept of truth-ground containment as following from in Wittgenstein’s Tractatus. I show that this second concept belongs to the diagram tradition of showing that the premisses contain the conclusion by the fact that the conclusion is diagrammed in the very act of diagramming the premisses. I argue that the extensional concept is primary, with at least five usable modern classical filters or constraints and indefinitely many secondary intensional filters or constraints. For the extensional concept is the genus of deductive relevance, and the filters define species. Also following the Tractatus, deductive relevance, or full truth-ground containment, is the limit of inductive relevance, or partial truth-ground containment. Purely extensional inductive or partial relevance has its filters or species too. Thus extensional relevance is more properly a universal concept of relevance or summum genus with modern classical deductive logic, relevantist deductive logic, and inductive logic as its three main domains. (shrink)
This essay argues that to understand much that is most central to and characteristic of the nature and behaviour of law, one needs to supplement the time-free conceptual staples of modern jurosprudence with an understanding of the nature and behaviour of traditions in social life. The article is concerned with three elements of such an understanding. First, it suggests that traditionality is to be found in almost all legal systems, not as a peripheral but as a central feature of them. (...) Second, it questions the post-Enlightenment antinomy between tradition and change. Third, it argues that in at least two important senses of tradition, the traditionality of law is inescapable. (shrink)
This article analyses the tradition of “articulating xing in terms of sheng ” and related other expressions, and also examines the debate between Mencius and Gaozi concerning “ xing is known by sheng .” It claims that while Mencius’ “human nature is good” discourse is influenced by the interpretive tradition of “articulating xing in terms of sheng ”, Mencius also transcends and develops this tradition. Therefore it is only when Mencius’ views about the goodness of human nature (...) are understood in the context of this interpretive tradition that his ideas can be fully understood. Utilizing this framework, the Confucian understanding of rights is then explored. (shrink)
The analytic tradition is sometimes criticized as being narrowly focused on language, logic or conceptual analysis to the detriment of deeper investigations into ontological, metaphysical or moral questions.1 More specifically, analytic philosophy has been associated with a positivist attitude which favored replacing the philosophy’s traditional focus on fundamental questions with an obsequiously deferential relationship to mathematics and the natural sciences. While this line of criticism obscures the historical reality and contemporary diversity of the analytic tradition, it is certainly (...) true that analytic philosophers have generated severe criticisms of traditional metaphysics. (shrink)
Although the use of military force for humanitarian ends seems utterly divorced from the use of such force to combat terrorism, both uses answer to similar descriptions. Both appear to encourage nations that are not necessarily themselves under attack to set aside the reigning conventions of national sovereignty and territorial integrity for the overriding purposes of international law enforcement and protection of vulnerable noncombatants. Both involve offensive rather than purely defensive uses of military force. Both answer to criteria of justification (...) that can be derived more readily from the normative moral principles of the classical just war tradition than from purely descriptive revisions of the 'legalist paradigm' in international relations, because the latter is deeply wedded by precedent to notions of sovereignty, territorial integrity, and a purely defensive use of military force. Most significantly, the justification for both kinds of military action depends essentially upon a notion of 'the international community' that is inchoate and urgently in need of rigorous reformulation. In this paper, I attempt to formulate criteria for the justifiable use of military force for these non-defensive purposes, with attention to the nuances of internationalism that several of the resulting criteria entail. Challenges to the de facto role of the United Nations as the sole authoritative representative of this community, and alternatives to its authority in legitimating the use of military force for purposes of international law enforcement, are considered. (shrink)
Originally published in English in 1980, Rhetoric as Philosophy has been out of print for some time. The reviews of that English edition attest to the importance of Ernesto Grassi’s work. By going back to the Italian humanist tradition and aspects of earlier Greek and Latin thought, Ernesto Grassi develops a conception of rhetoric as the basis of philosophy. Grassi explores the sense in which the first principles of rational thought come from the metaphorical power of the word. He (...) finds the basis for his conception in the last great thinker of the Italian humanist tradition, Giambattista Vico (1668–1744). He concentrates on Vico’s understanding of imagination and the sense of human ingenuity contained in metaphor. For Grassi, rhetorical activity is the essence and inner life of thought when connected to the metaphorical power of the word. (shrink)
In his most recent treatment of a priori knowledge, Philip Kitcher argues against what he takes to be the widespread view that our knowledge and warranted belief is 'tradition-independent'. Furthermore, he argues that defeasible conceptions of a priori warrant entail that it is not tradition-independent, a conclusion which he thinks is contrary to what most epistemologists hold. I argue that knowledge is not widely believed to be tradition-independent, and that, while warrant is widely believed to be (...) class='Hi'>tradition-independent, Kitcher's arguments show neither that this widespread view is mistaken nor that it conflicts with defeasible a warrant. I conjecture that Kitcher may be misled by a lack of clarity regarding the analysandum designated by 'warrant'. (shrink)
Recent scholarship has focused attention on the difficulties that evil, suffering, and tragic conflict present to religious belief and moral life. Thinkers have drawn upon many important historical figures, with one significant exception - Augustine. At the same time, there has been a renaissance of work on Augustine, but little discussion of either his work on evil or his influence on contemporary thought. This book fills these gaps. It explores the 'family biography' of the Augustinian tradition by looking at (...) Augustine's work and its development in the writings of Hannah Arendt and Reinhold Niebuhr. Mathewes argues that the Augustinian tradition offers us a powerful, though commonly misconstrued, proposal for understanding and responding to evil's challenges. The book casts new light on Augustine, Niebuhr, and Arendt, as well as on the problem of evil, the nature of tradition, and the role of theological and ethical discourse in contemporary thought. (shrink)
This article takes as its point of departure the question of how Wilhelm Halbfass, Daya Krishna, and Jitendranath Mohanty have conceptualized tradition in relation to “Indian” philosophy. They have all reacted to, and criticized, homogeneous and static conceptions of Indian philosophies, and by articulating different ways of apprehending tradition they have tried to come to terms with such limiting images. My reading of their texts has been informed by a questioning of how they, in turn, conceptualize tradition. (...) Most of all this is related to the tendency, on the one hand, to stress that tradition is open-ended and dynamic but at the same time to speak of tradition as one singular and universalizable phenomenon .. (shrink)
The reception history of Aristotle's Prior Analytics in the Islamic world began even before its ninth-century translation into Arabic. Three generations earlier, Arabic authors already absorbed echoes of the varied and extensive logical teaching tradition of Greek- and Syriac-speaking religious communities in the new Islamic state. Once translated into Arabic, the Prior Analytics inspired a rich tradition of logical studies, culminating in the creation of an independent Islamic logical tradition by Ibn Sina (d. 1037), Ibn Rušd (d. (...) 1098) and others. This article traces the translation and commentary tradition of the Prior Analytics in Syriac and Arabic in the sixth to ninth centuries and sketches its appropriation, revision and, ultimately, transformation by Islamic philosophers between the ninth and eleventh centuries. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: 1. Introduction; 2. Autodidact and student: on the relationship of authority and autonomy in Epicurus and the Epicurean tradition Michael Erler; 3. Epicurus' theological innatism David Sedley; 4. Epicurus on the gods David Konstan; 5. Not all politicians are Sisyphus: what Roman Epicureans were taught about politics Jeffrey Fish; 6. Epicurean virtues, Epicurean friendship: Cicero vs. the Herculaneum papyri David Armstrong; 7. Cicero's use and abuse of Epicurean theology Holger Essler; 8. The necessity of anger (...) in Philodemus' 'On Anger' Elizabeth Asmis; 9. Philodemus, Seneca, and Plutarch on anger Voula Tsouna; 10. Philodemus and the fear of premature death Kirk R. Sanders. (shrink)
This collection of previously unpublished essays presents a new approach to the history of analytic philosophy--one that does not assume at the outset a general characterization of the distinguishing elements of the analytic tradition. Drawing together a venerable group of contributors, including John Rawls and Hilary Putnam, this volume explores the historical contexts in which analytic philosophers have worked, revealing multiple discontinuities and misunderstandings as well as a complex interaction between science and philosophical reflection.
Taking on the Tradition focuses on how the work of Jacques Derrida has helped us rethink and rework the themes of tradition, legacy, and inheritance in the Western philosophical tradition. It concentrates not only on such themes in the work of Derrida but also on his own gestures with regard to these themes—that is, on the performativity of Derrida’s texts. The book thus uses Derrida’s understanding of speech act theory to reread his own work. The book consists (...) in a series of close readings of Derrida’s texts to demonstrate that the claims he makes in his work cannot be fully understood without considering the way he makes those claims. The book considers Derrida’s relation to the Greek philosophical tradition and to his immediate predecessors in the French philosophical tradition, as well as his own legacy within the contemporary scene. Part I examines Derrida’s analyses of Plato and Aristotle on the themes of writing and metaphor. Part II looks at themes of donation, inheritance, pedagogy, and influence in relation to Derrida’s readings of the works of Michel Foucault, Jacques Lacan, and Jean-Pierre Vernant. Part III considers the promises and legacies of Derrida’s work on autobiography, friendship, and hospitality, themes Derrida has recently taken up in his readings of Martin Heidegger, Maurice Blanchot, and Emmanuel Levinas. In the Conclusion, the author analyzes what Derrida has recently called a “messianicity without messianism” and shows how Derrida develops two different notions of the future and of legacy: one that always determines a horizon for the donation and reception of any legacy or tradition, and one that leaves open a radically unknown and unknowable future for that legacy and tradition. (shrink)
I seek to interpret the work of Walter Benjamin in light of the "system programme" of German Idealism, in order to confront an antinomy of contemporary radical thought. Benjamin has been regarded as an anti-Hegelian thinker of the exception. Reading him against the grain, I draw out a concept of counter-tradition that eschews the opposition of intra-historical progress and extra-historical exception. The philological inspiration is a book by Franz Joseph Molitor, student of Schelling and "teacher" of Benjamin: The Philosophy (...) of History, or, On Tradition. (shrink)
This article introduces the doctrine of the passions in the Hobbesian work, showing its debt with tradition, especially the scholastic Aristotelian one, even if, at the same time, it offers some breach features with this tradition, which are also analysed. In addition, the fundamentals of imagination manifest themselves in the appetitive process, in Hobbes's doctrine as well as in the scholastic Aristotelian tradition, showing their similarities and differences.
In what follows, I analyze Ralph Strode's treatise on obligations. I have used a hitherto unpublished edition of the text (based on 14 manuscripts) made by Prof. E.J. Ashworth. I first give a brief description of Strode's text, which is all the more necessary given that it is not available to the average reader; I also offer a reconstruction of the rules proposed by Strode, following the style of reconstruction used in my analysis of Burley's and Swyneshed's rules elsewhere—that is, (...) essentially based on the idea that obligationes can be viewed as logical games. In the second part, I address Strode's explicit arguments contra Swyneshed. In the third part, I discuss Strode's epistemic and pragmatic approach to obligationes. (shrink)
The virtue of qian, one of the traditional Chinese virtues, usually refers to humbleness, humility and modesty. Ancient thinkers in China not only expounded on the meaning and basis of qian, but also argued for its value. It was usually thought that the value of qian rested in its ability to cultivate virtue, promote scholarship, get along with people, and maintain enterprises. Ancient thinkers in China placed so much emphasis on the virtue of qian that there was a tendency to (...) overemphasize qian. There is also a tradition of qian in the West, which is less likely to become excessive compared to that in the East. Presently, Chinese society is transitioning into a modern society, but the virtue of qian still has value. While continuing to embrace its traditional essence, we should adopt useful aspects from the Western concept of qian to reshape the virtue of qian so that it conforms to modern Chinese society. (shrink)
Alasdair MacIntyre's account of tradition-based rationality has been the subject of much discussion, as well as the object of some recent charges of inconsistency. The author considers arguments by Jennifer Herdt, Peter Mehl, and John Haldane which attempt to show that MacIntyre's account of rationality is, in some way, inconsistent. It is argued that the various charges of inconsistency brought against MacIntyre by these critics can be understood as variations on two general types of criticism: (1) that MacIntyre's account (...) of tradition-based rationality presents a picture of rationality with inconsistent internal elements, and (2) that MacIntyre, in the act of presenting his picture of rationality, makes the sort of claims to which his own account of rationality denies legitimacy, and thus MacIntyre's account is self-referentially incoherent. In response to criticisms of the first sort, it is argued that MacIntyre can further clarify or develop his position to take the current criticisms into account without altering the fundamental aspects of his picture of rationality. In response to the charge of self-referential incoherence, it is argued that the charge rests on a mistaken understanding of MacIntyre's position and of the nature of justification. In dealing with these arguments, the author hopes to not only vindicate MacIntyre's account of rationality against the charges of some of its recent critics, but also to shed some light on the nature of arguments both for and against relativism and historicism. (shrink)
I describe an ethic for business administration based on the social tradition of the Catholic Church. I find that much current thinking about business falters for its conceit of truth. Abstractions such as the shareholder-value model contain truth - namely, that business is an economic enterprise to manage for the wealth of its owners. But, as in all abstractions, this truth comes at the expense of falsehood -namely, that persons are assets to deploy on behalf of owners. This last (...) is "wrong" in both senses of the word - it is factually wrong in that persons are far more than business assets, they are supernatural beings, children of God; and it is morally wrong in that it is an injustice to treat them as the former when they are the latter. I draw upon the social tradition of the Catholic Church to recognize that the business of business is not business, but is instead the human person. Following Church teachings, I describe a person-centered ethic of business based upon eight social principles that both correct and enlarge the shareholder-centered ethic of much current business thinking. I discuss implications of this person-centered ethic for business administration. (shrink)
I argue that, in analysing the structure and development of moral traditions, MacIntyre relies primarily on Kuhn's model of scientific tradition, rather than (as is held by at least two influential commentators) on Lakatos' model. I unpack three foci of Kuhn's conception of the sciences, namely: the ‘crisis’ conception of scientific development, what I call the ‘systematic conception’ of scientific paradigms, and the view that successive paradigms are incommensurable. I then show that these three foci are integrated into MacIntyre's (...) account of the development of moral traditions with a surprising degree of faithfulness to Kuhn. And crucially, I argue against the overall cogency of his account, given the disparities I pinpoint between scientific and moral traditions. My overall critique is, however, fundamentally friendly, since nothing I have to say invalidates the very notion of a moral tradition, and all I am calling for are less problematic construals of that notion. (shrink)
Retrospect and prospect for contemporary Chinese thought -- Resolving the tension between tradition and modernity : reflections on the May Fourth cultural tide -- The May Fourth tide and modernity -- Radicalism in the cultural movement of the twentieth century -- Modern Chinese culture and the difficulties of Confucian learning -- Liang Shuming's early view of Oriental and Western culture -- The establishment and development of Feng Youlan's view of culture -- A reflection on the new school of principle (...) and thoughts on modernity -- Confucian thought and the world of modern East Asia -- Confucian ethics and China's modernisation -- East Asian tradition according to modernisation theory -- A sense of predicament and inter-dependency -- Liang Shuming and Max Weber on Chinese culture -- Values, authority, tradition and Chinese philosophy -- The difficulty of undertaking national studies research in the nineties : the problem of the national studies fever and research into traditional culture -- The value and status of traditional Chinese culture. (shrink)
The tradition of anthropological medicine in philosophy of medicine is analyzed in relation to the earlier interest in epistemological issues in medicine around the turn of the century as well as to the current interest in medical ethics. It is argued that there is a continuity between epistemological, anthropological and ethical approaches in philosophy of medicine. Three basic ideas of anthropologically-oriented medicine are discussed: the rejection of Cartesian dualism, the notion of medicine as science of the human person, and (...) the necessity of a comprehensive understanding of disease. Next, it is discussed why the anthropological movement has been superseded by the increasing interest in medical ethics. It is concluded that the present-day moral issues cannot be interpreted and resolved without clarification of the underlying anthropological images. (shrink)
After tracing the main features of the foundational ethical perspectives and their relationship to the rise of medical practice in early Islam, the paper focusses on the development of the moral concept of adab . This concept served as an important tool in defining and shaping an ethical tradition based on the integration of the Hippocratic tradition into Muslim medicine and its underlying moral values. The existence of plural therapeutic systems and their moral and theological sources are also (...) noted and an attempt is made to show how all of these diverse modes co-existed through most of the premodern history of medicine among Muslims. The paper ends by outlining the impact the European colonial and cultural encounter with the World of Islam had, in creating a duality in medical practice, education and institutions, thus limiting sustained and meaningful discourse between modern medical science and the ethical values of Islam. Keywords: Islam, adab , justice, colonialism CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
The Algebra of Revolution is the first book to study Marxist method as it has been developed by the main representatives of the classical Marxist tradition, namely Marx and Engels, Luxembourg, Lenin, Lukacs, Gramsci, and Trotsky. This book provides the only single volume study of major Marxist thinkers' views on the crucial question of the dialectic, connecting them with pressing contemporary, political and theoretical questions. This title available in eBook format. Click here for more information . Visit our eBookstore (...) at: www.ebookstore.tandf.co.uk. (shrink)
In an article published in 2003, Klaus Jacobi—using texts partially edited in De Rijk's Logica Modernorum—demonstrated that twelfth-century logic contains a tradition of reflecting about some of the transcendental names (nomina transcendentia). In addition to reinforcing Jacobi's thesis with other texts, this contribution aims to demonstrate two points: 1) That twelfth-century logical reflection about transcendental terms has its origin in the logica vetus, and especially in a passage from Porphyry Isagoge and in Boethius's commentary on it. In spite of (...) the loss of the major part of the Aristotelian corpus, the twelfth-century masters in logic still received some Aristotelian theses concerning the notions of one and being via Porphyry and Boethius; on the basis of such theses, they were able to elaborate a sort of proto-theory of the transcendentals as trans-categorical terms. 2) That this theory is centred on the idea that there exists a particular group of names which have the property that they can be said of everything; this group includes "being", "one", "thing" and "something" (ens, unum, res, aliquid). Twelfth-century masters in logic try to question the (originally Aristotelian) thesis that these terms are equivocal, although they do not deny it completely. (shrink)
Abstract This introductory article argues that world public order continues to be challenged by the emergence of the doctrines of anticipatory self-defense and humanitarian intervention. These challenges may be better understood, and reconciled, by application of the just war tradition.
The paper deals with the ontological questions related to tradition, especially focusing on Gadamer and Dilthey. It is argued that tradition should be regarded not that much as a limitation, but rather as an enabling finitude that gives access to reality. This ontological structure concerns several aspects of human existence, nomothetic science included. Historical background thus has an ontological impact that surpasses objectivistic approaches. A short discussion of causality in natural science traces the genealogy of the causal scheme (...) and compares the notion of effect with the Wirkung in the sense of effective history (Wirkungsgeschichte). In this context the difference between the modern scientific concept of nature and the natura of the elder tradition appears to be important in order to understand the specificity of Diltheyan philosophy of life (Lebensphilosophie). There seems to be a complementary relation between hermeneutics and philosophy of life insofar as both currents are trying to reinstall the modern subject in reality, Gadamers main concern being the historical incarnation in a process, profoundly marked by language and Dilthey still trying to save part of nature in history. These two aspects can be regarded as almost direct answers to the inverse Cartesian tendency to liberate the subject from its history (represented by the prejudices) and from its bodily nature (represented by confuse sensual imagination). Experience (Erfahrung) and lived experience (Erlebnis) thus seem less contradictory than some passages in Gadamers Truth and Method would suggest. (shrink)
The Arabic tradition knew Alexander’s treatises On Fate and On Providence. Alexander criticizes the Stoic determinism with some peripatetic arguments. In those treatises we can find, at least, two positions: the peripatetic and “libertarian” position represented by Alexander, and Stoic determinism. A very similar discussion can be found in Islamic tradition. As S. Van den Bergh has insisted, Islamic theological schools had some Stoic influences. One of the issues in which we can find some common views is, precisely, (...) the problem of determinism and free will. The aim of this paper is to show that the kasb (acquisition)doctrine of the Islamic theologians Asharites is very similar to Stoic determinism in its compatibilist version: both, Stoics and Asharites, conceive a causal network established by the fate or the providence. From this point of view we have to discuss which is the true agent of the natural and human acts that happen in this world. If the providence guides every act, the natural causality and the free will should be denied. On the one hand, I will present some arguments from the most representative Asharite theologian, al-Ghazali, to support a kind of compatibilist determinism; from the other hand, I will evaluate Averroes peripatetic arguments against determinism. Is Averroes more consistent than Alexander or do we have to conclude that al-Ghazali and the Asharites have stronger arguments in order to support the kasb doctrine? (shrink)
It is quite widely assumed that at the beginning of his career Richard Rorty was an orthodox analytic philosopher, working in its then current mainstream, and especially fascinated by the linguistic turn taken by this tradition. Subsequently he supposedly radically and dramatically changed his views, turning himself from a staunch analytic philosophers into a vigorous critic of the analytic tradition and ultimately paradigmatically postmodern and continental thinker. It is argued in the paper that this common picture exaggerates changes (...) in Rorty’s philosophical views. He certainly has never become fully postmodern and continental philosopher, whatever it means. And what seems more important, he always had a lot of reservations about analytic philosophy and had less hopes of it than one or two passages from his early writings suggest. (shrink)
Karl Popper and Friedrich von Hayek became close friends soon after they first met in the early 1930s. Ever since, they discussed their ideas intensively on many occasions. But even though an analysis of the origins and contents of their ideas and correspondence reveals a number of important and fundamental differences, they rarely criticize each other in their published work. The article analyzes in particular the different ideas they have on the role of reason in society and on rationalism and (...) the roots of these differences. Popper’s “Towards a Rational Theory of Tradition” of 1948 contains a criticism of Hayek’s idea—published, for instance, in “Individualism: True and False” of 1945—that we must accept tradition without trying to change it. An analysis of the differences between the two authors touches on topics such as the possibility of public intervention in society, the role of social science in this, the methodology of social science, and the differences between liberalism and social democracy. The article concludes with some possible explanations for Popper and Hayek downplaying their differences in public. The fact remains that they never resolved the tension between Popper’s critical rationalism and Hayek’s conservative rationalism. (shrink)
Recent research on the role of ethics in the organizational culture literature found practically the whole literature reduced to a debate between ethical rationalism and ethical relativism. The role of the past in the form of tradition to maintain and improve moral reflection is completely missing. To address this gap in the literature on the level of practice, the concepts of moral memory and moral tradition are applied to data on 22 companies that have long-standing moral practices. In (...) this way, the practice of moral traditions can be explored with recent conceptual advances and a list of best practices delineated. Moral memory is the recollection of and attachment to the succession of past events and experiences that maintains moral tradition. Moral tradition is the continuing transmission and reception of related moral themes through multiple generations of employees. It is found that companies that maintain moral traditions tend to develop “family” cultures with considerable compassion for workers as persons who have non-economic needs and rights. These companies also temper the role of leadership, insisting that leaders are responsible for and are evaluated by the company’s moral traditions. Finally, moral traditions are essential mechanisms through which companies paradoxically both stimulate and limit competitive behavior. (shrink)
The legacy and future of continental philosophy with regard to the critical philosophy of race can be seen in prominent canonical philosophical figures, the scholarship of contemporary philosophers, and recent edited collections and book series. The following reflections highlight some (though certainly not all) of the contacts and overlaps between a select number of continental philosophers and the critical philosophy of race. In particular, I consider how the continental tradition has contributed to the development of the critical philosophy of (...) race by offering tools from existentialism, phenomenology, and genealogy to emphasize questions of existence, facticity, lived experience, and historicity as they relate to analyses of race, racism, slavery, and colonialism.1 I argue that these tools have been used both implicitly and explicitly in the writings of contemporary continental philosophers who theorize about race and that the critical philosophy of race has impacted and expanded continental philosophy in significant ways. (shrink)
Some central issues offin-de-siècle Hungarian philosophy and intellectual tradition can be retrieved from the writings of József Eötvös and his mid-nineteenth century contemporaries. An ambiguous attitude towards metaphysics, emphasis on sociological issues as well as a regional perspective are apparent in his texts prior to the emergence of the great fin-de-siècle generation of Hungarian intellectuals. They survived the Habsburg Empire thanks to the post-Monarchical literary tradition and Péter Esterházy's works; they provided an adequate vocabulary for the Central European (...) experience following the Soviet Era. (shrink)
Kolb discusses postmodern architectural styles and theories within the context of philosophical ideas about modernism and postmodernism. He focuses on what it means to dwell in a world and within a history and to act from or against a tradition.
What should human languages be like if humans are the products of Darwinian evolution? Between Darwin’s day & like the peoples speaking them are higher or lower in an evolutionarily generated scale This paper charts some of the changes in the Darwinian tradition that transformed the notion of human linguistic equality from creationist heresy., our own, expectations about evolution’s imprint on language have changed dramaticallyIt is now a commonplace that, for good Darwinian reasons, no language is more highly evolved (...) than any otherBut Darwin, in The descent of man, defended the opposite view: different languages. (shrink)
Although Symons' recent book, On Dennett (Wadsworth, 2002), provides scientists with ahelpful, general introduction to Dennett'sthought, it presents a skewed version of the history of the philosophy of mind. In particular, the continental tradition is almost entirely ignored, if not glibly dismissed. As aresult, the unwary reader of this book wouldnever realize that Dilthey, Sartre and Husserl,like Dennett, offer a ``middle ground'' between naturalistic realism and naturalistic eliminativism. However, unlike Dennett, the respective positions of Dilthey, Sartre and Husserl are (...) not ontologically indifferent, but instead, present a non-naturalistic form of realism that does not simultaneously invoke Cartesian dualism. (shrink)