I am very happy indeed to contribute to this series of lectures, especially because I owe most of my training in philosophy to Elizabeth Anscombe, whose work has given the series its name. I am deeply indebted to the marvellous generosity of her teaching, to the example she set me of an unrelentingly thorough and serious thinker, to the unobtrusive way she introduced me to Wittgenstein's later philosophy. Through Elizabeth Anscombe I also made the acquaintance of my friend Philippa Foot, (...) whose work in moral philosophy has, over decades and more than anyone else's, influenced my own. I hope it will be possible to recognize in what I am going to say here not indeed the excellence but at least traces of the beneficial influence of both these philosophers. (shrink)
Do the virtues, as is often said, conflict with each other? The history of philosophy knows various attempts to conceive of them so as to exclude such conflict. Nicolai Hartmann ("Ethik", 1925) is the most prominent representative "and" critic of this tradition in our century. Each Aristotelian "mean", for him, represents a "synthesis" of "conflicting values"; but only the "one and only virtue" synthesizing "all" values would exclude all tragic conflict. In contrast, the Aristotelian and medieval conception of "connexio virtutum" (...) by "prudence" allows the virtues to "limit each other" and thus be "compatible" without merging into one super-virtue. (shrink)
I propose that a logical formalization of a natural language text may be regarded as adequate if the following three groups of beliefs can be integrated into a wide reflective equilibrium: our initial, spontaneous beliefs about the structure and logical quality of the text; our beliefs about its structure and logical quality as reflected in the proposed formalization, and our background beliefs about the original text’s author, his thought and other contextually relevant factors. Unlike a good part of the literature, (...) I stress the indispensable role of initial beliefs in achieving such a wide reflective equilibrium. In the final sections I show that my approach does not succumb to undue subjectivism or the mere perpetuation of prejudice. The examples I use to illustrate my claims are chiefly taken from Anselm’s Proslogion 2–3 and the various attempts to formalize these texts. (shrink)
After Aquinas, Anselm is the most significant medieval thinker. Utterly convinced of the truth of the Christian religion, he was none the less determined to try to make sense of his Christian faith, and the result is a rigorous engagement with problems of logic which remain relevant for philosophers and theologians even today. This translation provides the first opportunity to read all of Anselm's most important works in one volume.
Ranging from his early treatises, the _Monologion_ and the _Proslogion_, to his three philosophical dialogues on metaphysical topics such as the relationship between freedom and sin, and late treatises on the Incarnation and salvation, this collection of Anselm's essential writings will be a boon to students of the history of philosophy and theology as well as to anyone interested in examining what Anselm calls "the reason of faith.".
The reason of faith -- Thought and language -- Truth -- The Monologion arguments for the existence of God -- The Proslogion argument for the existence of God -- The divine attributes -- Thinking and speaking about God -- Creation and the word -- The Trinity -- Modality -- Freedom -- Morality -- Incarnation and atonement -- Original sin, grace, and salvation.
Why are negative emotions so central in art reception far beyond tragedy? Revisiting classical aesthetics in the light of recent psychological research, we present a novel model to explain this much discussed paradox. We argue that negative emotions are an important resource for the arts in general, rather than a special license for exceptional art forms only. The underlying rationale is that negative emotions have been shown to be particularly powerful in securing attention, intense emotional involvement, and high memorability, and (...) hence is precisely what artworks strive for. Two groups of processing mechanisms are identified that conjointly adopt the particular powers of negative emotions for art's purposes. The first group consists of psychological distancing mechanisms that are activated along with the cognitive schemata of art, representation, and fiction. These schemata imply personal safety and control over continuing or discontinuing exposure to artworks, thereby preventing negative emotions from becoming outright incompatible with expectations of enjoyment. This distancing sets the stage for a second group of processing components that allow art recipients to positively embrace the experiencing of negative emotions, thereby rendering art reception more intense, more interesting, more emotionally moving, more profound, and occasionally even more beautiful. These components include compositional interplays of positiveandnegative emotions, the effects of aesthetic virtues of using the media of presentation on emotion perception, and meaning-making efforts. Moreover, our Distancing-Embracing model proposes that concomitant mixed emotions often help integrate negative emotions into altogether pleasurable trajectories. (shrink)
Introduction -- Anselm's classical theism -- The Augustinian legacy -- The purpose, definition, and structure of free choice -- Alternative possibilities and primary agency -- The causes of sin and the intelligibility problem -- Creaturely freedom and God as Creator Omnium -- Grace and free will -- Foreknowledge, freedom, and eternity : part I, the problem and historical background -- Foreknowledge, freedom, and eternity : part II, Anselm's solution -- The freedom of God.
Ecosemiotics is the study of sign processes (semioses) in relation to the natural environment in which they occur. The paper examines the cultural, biological, and evolutionary dimensions of ecosemioses on the basis of C. S. Peirce's theory of continuity between matter and mind and investigates the ecosemiotic dimensions of natural signs. Ecosemiotics and the semiotics of nature are distinguished from pansemiotism, and the coevolution of sign processes with their natural enviromnent is discussed as a determining factor of ecosemiosis.
The paper discusses Anselm's account of human finitude and freedom through his discussion of what it means to receive what we have from God in De casu diaboli. The essay argues that Anselm is considering the same issue as Jean Paul Sartre in his account of receiving a gift as incompatible with freedom. De casu diaboli takes up this same question, asking about how the finite will can be free, which requires that it have something per se, when (...) there is nothing, as St. Paul asserted in Romans, that we have not received. Anselm's notion that we have two wills, one for benefit or advantage, and one for justice, allows for something to come per se from the individual who wills and also accounts for the willing of the good angels as the acceptance of what they are and have as received and, hence, as finite. The essay concludes with reflection on Sartre and Camus's The Plague taking as the central ethical and existential problem of human life, as Anselm does, the problem of finitude, and comparing their responses. (shrink)
In the first part of chapter 2 of book II of the Physics Aristotle addresses the issue of the difference between mathematics and physics. In the course of his discussion he says some things about astronomy and the ‘ ‘ more physical branches of mathematics”. In this paper I discuss historical issues concerning the text, translation, and interpretation of the passage, focusing on two cruxes, the first reference to astronomy at 193b25–26 and the reference to the more physical branches at 194a7–8. In (...) section I, I criticize Ross’s interpretation of the passage and point out that his alteration of has no warrant in the Greek manuscripts. In the next three sections I treat three other interpretations, all of which depart from Ross's: in section II that of Simplicius, which I commend; in section III that of Thomas Aquinas, which is importantly influenced by a mistranslation of, and in section IV that of Ibn Rushd, which is based on an Arabic text corresponding to that printed by Ross. In the concluding section of the paper I describe the modern history of the Greek text of our passage and translations of it from the early twelfth century until the appearance of Ross's text in 1936. (shrink)
The paper sheds light on the concept of model in ordinary language and in scientific discourse from the perspective of C. S. Peirce’s semiotics. It proposes a general Peircean framework for the definition of models of all kinds, including mental models. A survey of definitions of scientific models that have been influential in the philosophy of science and of the typologies proposed in this context is given. The author criticizes the heterogeneity of the criteria applied in these typologies and the (...) lack of a semiotic foundation in typological distinctions between formal, symbolic, theoretical, metaphorical, and iconic models, among others. The paper argues that the application of Peirce’s subdivision of signs into the trichotomies of the sign itself, its object, and its interpretant can offer a deeper understanding of the nature of models. Semiotic topics in the focus of the paper are the distinction between models as signs and models as the interpretants of signs; models considered as a type and models considered as tokens of a type; the iconicity of models, including diagrammatic and metaphorical icons; the contribution of indices and symbols to the informativity of models; and the rhetorical qualities of models in scientific discourse. The paper argues in conclusion that informative models are hybrid signs in which a diagram incorporates indices and symbols in a rhetorically efficient way. (shrink)
A survey of Euclid's Elements, this text provides an understanding of the classical Greek conception of mathematics and its similarities to modern views as well as its differences. It focuses on philosophical, foundational, and logical questions — rather than strictly historical and mathematical issues — and features several helpful appendixes.
Protosemiotics is the study of the rudiments of semiosis, primarily in nature. The extension of the semiotic field from culture to nature is both necessary and possible in the framework of Peirce's semiotic theory. Against this extension, the critique of pansemiotism has been raised. However, Peirce's semiotics is not pansemiotic since it is based on the criterion of thirdness, which is not ubiquitous in nature. The paper examines the criteria of protosemiosis in the domain of physical and mechanical processes.
It is a popular thought that emotions play an important epistemic role. Thus, a considerable number of philosophers find it compelling to suppose that emotions apprehend the value of objects and events in our surroundings. I refer to this view as the Epistemic View of emotion. In this paper, my concern is with a rivaling picture of emotion, which has so far received much less attention. On this account, emotions do not constitute a form of epistemic access to specific axiological (...) aspects of their objects. Instead it proposes that they are ways of taking a stand or position on the world. I refer to this as the Position-Taking View of emotion. Whilst some authors seem sympathetic to this view, this it has so far not been systematically motivated and elaborated. In this paper, I fill this gap and propose a more adequate account of our emotional engagement with the world than the predominant epistemic paradigm. I start by highlighting the specific way in which emotions are directed at something, which I contrast with the intentionality of perception and other forms of apprehension. I then go on to offer a specific account of the valence of emotion and show how this account and the directedness of emotions makes them intelligible as a way of taking a position on something. (shrink)
It is characteristic of Anselm to adopt the formulations of his authorities while giving them meanings of his own, hiding conceptual disagreement by means of verbal echoes. Anselm's considerable originality sometimes goes unnoticed because readers see the standard Augustinian language and miss the fact that Anselm uses it to state un-Augustinian views. One striking instance of Anselm's quiet radicalism is his understanding of free choice and the fall. He seems to uphold standard Augustinian privation theory when (...) he affirms that injustice is merely an absence of justice where justice should be; he seems also to be committed to the standard Augustinian view that everything that has being is created by God. A closer examination, however, shows that Anselm clearly has qualms about whether privation theory can do all of the work to which Augustine had tried to put it; and Anselm actually affirms that every free choice has being and yet is not created by God. I begin by showing that Anselm regards unjust acts a.. (shrink)
This book represents a considerable revision and expansion of Public Choice II. Six new chapters have been added, and several chapters from the previous edition have been extensively revised. The discussion of empirical work in public choice has been greatly expanded. As in the previous editions, all of the major topics of public choice are covered. These include: why the state exists, voting rules, federalism, the theory of clubs, two-party and multiparty electoral systems, rent seeking, bureaucracy, interest groups, dictatorship, the (...) size of government, voter participation, and political business cycles. Normative issues in public choice are also examined including a normative analysis of the simple majority rule, Bergson–Samuelson social welfare functions, the Arrow and Sen impossibility theorems, Rawls's social contract theory and the constitutional political economy of Buchanan and Tullock. (shrink)
The "semiotic threshold" is U. Eco's metaphor of the borderline between the world of semiosis and the nonsemiotic world and hence also between semiotics and its neighboring disciplines. The paper examines Eco's threshold in comparison to the views of semiosis and semiotics of C. S. Peirce. While Eco follows the structuralist tradition, postulating the conventionality of signs as the main criterion of semiosis, Peirce has a much broader concept of semiosis, which is not restricted to phenomena of culture but includes (...) many processes in nature. Whereas Eco arrives at the conclusion that biological processes, such as the ones within the immune system, cannot be included in the program of semiotic research, Peirce's broader defmition of semiosis has meanwhile become thefoundation of semiotic studies in biology and medicine and hence in biosemiotics and medical semiotics. (shrink)
In this paper we offer a reconstruction of Anselm’s account of freedom that resolves various apparent inconsistencies. The linchpin of this account is the definition of freedom. Anselm argues that the power to preserve rectitude for its own sake requires the power to initiate an action of which the agent is the ultimate cause, but it does not always require that alternative possibilities be available to the agent. So while freedom is incompatible with coercion and external causal determination, (...) an agent can, under certain circumstances, act freely even though he cannot act otherwise than he does. (shrink)
Ranging from his early treatises, the ’Monologion’ (a work written to show his monks how to meditate on the divine essence) and the ’Proslogion’ (best known for its advancement of the so-called ontological argument for the existence of God), to his three philosophical dialogues on metaphysical topics such as the relationship between freedom and sin, and late treatises on the Incarnation and salvation, this collection of Anselm’s essential writings will be of interest to students of the history of philosophy (...) and theology as well as to anyone interested in examining what Anselm calls "the reason of faith." (publisher). (shrink)
Increasingly, companies implement social and environmental standards as instruments towards corporate social responsibility in supply chains. This is based on the assumption that such standards increase legitimacy among stakeholders. Yet, a wide variety of standards with different requirement levels exist and companies might tend to introduce the ones with low exigencies, using them as a legitimacy front. This strategy jeopardizes the reputation of social and environmental standards among stakeholders and their long-term trust in these instruments of CSR, meaning that all (...) expenses for their implementation are of no avail for the companies. Therefore, this paper highlights which criteria are important for the selection, implementation and improvement in order to achieve a company's aim, but also to strengthen the legitimacy of social and environmental standards. This research is based on conceptual thought and some existing empirical research, comparing four different social and environmental standards, revealing weaknesses and strengths. It exposes the basic conditions for the success of such standards among stakeholders and identifies the need for more empirical data. (shrink)
In several of his papers, Charles S. Peirce illustrates processes of interpreting and understanding signs by examples from second language vocabulary teaching and learning. The insights conveyed by means of these little pedagogical scenarios are not meant as contributions to the psychology of second language learning, but they aim at elucidating fundamental semiotic implications of knowledge acquisition in general. Peirce's semiotic premise that a well-understood sign is one that represents an object and creates an interpretant is essential to the understanding (...) of how new words and signs in general can be taught and learned. The article argues that Peirce's theory of the object of the sign, especially of the necessity of collateral experience of the object of a sign, can help to understand the riddle posed by of the Meno paradox of the impossibility of learning what we do not yet know. It examines the semiotic implications of the didactic methods of teaching and learning through translation, ostension, mental and real images, as well as metacognition, and it shows how icons, indices, and symbols are essential to learning new words. (shrink)