Senegal is experiencing a rising obesity epidemic, due to the nutrition transition occurring in most African countries, and driven by sedentary behaviour and high-calorie dietary intake. In addition, the anthropological local drivers of the social valorization of processed high-calorie food and large body sizes could expose the population to obesity risk. This study aimed to determine the impact of these biocultural factors on the nutritional status of Senegalese adults. A mixed methods approach was used, including qualitative and quantitative studies. Between (...) 2011 and 2013, fourteen focus group discussions and a cross-sectional quantitative survey of adults in three different socio-ecological areas of Senegal were conducted. Dietary intake, physical activity, body weight norms, weight and health statuses were measured. Middle-aged and older Senegalese women were found to value overweight/obesity more than younger Senegalese in all regions. In addition, young urban/suburban adults had a tendency for daily snacking whilst urban/suburban adults tended to be less physically active and had higher anthropometric means. A binary logistic regression model showed that being female, older, living in urban/suburban areas and valuing larger body size were independently associated with being overweight/obese, but not high-calorie diet. Univariate analyses showed that lower physical activity and higher socioeconomic status were associated with being overweight/obese. Finally, overweight/obesity, which is low in men, is associated with hypertension in the total sample. The nutrition transition is currently underway in Senegal’s urban/suburban areas, with older women being more affected. Since several specific biocultural factors jointly contribute to this phenomenon, the study’s findings suggest the need for local public health interventions that target women and which account for the anthropological specificities of the Senegalese population. (shrink)
According to one productive and influential approach to cognition, categorization, object recognition, and higher level cognitive processes operate on a set of fixed features, which are the output of lower level perceptual processes. In many situations, however, it is the higher level cognitive process being executed that influences the lower level features that are created. Rather than viewing the repertoire of features as being fixed by low-level processes, we present a theory in which people create features to subserve the representation (...) and categorization of objects. Two types of category learning should be distinguished. Fixed space category learning occurs when new categorizations are representable with the available feature set. Flexible space category learning occurs when new categorizations cannot be represented with the features available. Whether fixed or flexible, learning depends on the featural contrasts and similarities between the new category to be represented and the individual's existing concepts. Fixed feature approaches face one of two problems with tasks that call for new features: If the fixed features are fairly high level and directly useful for categorization, then they will not be flexible enough to represent all objects that might be relevant for a new task. If the fixed features are small, subsymbolic fragments (such as pixels), then regularities at the level of the functional features required to accomplish categorizations will not be captured by these primitives. We present evidence of flexible perceptual changes arising from category learning and theoretical arguments for the importance of this flexibility. We describe conditions that promote feature creation and argue against interpreting them in terms of fixed features. Finally, we discuss the implications of functional features for object categorization, conceptual development, chunking, constructive induction, and formal models of dimensionality reduction. Key Words: concept learning; conceptual development; features; perceptual learning; stimulus encoding. (shrink)
The Theory of Literature in German Romanticism Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe, Jean-Luc Nancy. Preface: The. Literary. Absolute. I. "There are classifications that are bad enough as classifications, but that have nonetheless dominated entire ...
In this paper, we propose a framework capable of dealing with anaphora and ellipsis which is both general and algorithmic. This generality is ensured by the compination of two general ideas. First, we use a dynamic semantics which reperent effects using a monad structure. Second we treat scopes flexibly, extending them as needed. We additionally implement this framework as an algorithm which translates abstract syntax to logical formulas. We argue that this framework can provide a unified account of a large (...) number of anaphoric phenomena. Specifically, we show its effectiveness in dealing with pronominal and VP-anaphora, strict and lazy pronouns, lazy identity, bound variable anaphora, e-type pronouns, and cataphora. This means that in particular we can handle complex cases like Bach–Peters sentences, which require an account dealing simultaneously with several phenomena. We use Haskell as a meta-language to present the theory, which also consitutes an implementation of all the phenomena discussed in the paper. To demonstrate coverage, we propose a test suite that can be used to evaluate computational approaches to anaphora. (shrink)
A formalism is introduced to represent the connective organization of an evolving neuronal network and the effects of environment on this organization by stabilization or degeneration of labile synapses associated with functioning. Learning, or the acquisition of an associative property, is related to a characteristic variability of the connective organization: the interaction of the environment with the genetic program is printed as a particular pattern of such organization through neuronal functioning. An application of the theory to the development of the (...) neuromuscular junction is proposed and the basic selective aspect of learning emphasized. (shrink)
We reexamine some of the classic problems connected with the use of cardinal utility functions in decision theory, and discuss Patrick Suppes's contributions to this field in light of a reinterpretation we propose for these problems. We analytically decompose the doctrine of ordinalism, which only accepts ordinal utility functions, and dis- tinguish between several doctrines of cardinalism, depending on what components of ordinalism they specifically reject. We identify Suppes's doctrine with the major deviation from ordinalism that conceives of utility functions (...) as representing preference di¤erences, while being non- etheless empirically related to choices. We highlight the originality, promises and limits of this choice-based cardinalism. (shrink)
This article briefly presents some of the main features of the notion of “centrality of work” within the framework of the “psychodynamic” approach to work developed by Christophe Dejours. The paper argues that we should distinguish between at least four separate but related ways in which work can be said to be central: psychologically, in terms of gender relations, social-politically and epistemically.
Emotions are traditionally considered to be brief states that last for seconds or a few minutes at most. However, due to pioneering theoretical work of Frijda and recent empirical studies, it has become clear that the duration of emotions is actually highly variable with durations ranging from a few seconds to several hours, or even longer. We review research on determinants of emotion duration. Three classes of determinants are identified: features related to the emotion-eliciting event, emotion itself, and emotion-experiencing person. (...) Initial evidence on the psychological and neural mechanisms that underlie their effects is discussed. (shrink)
This book is a close reading of Jacques Lacan's seminal essay, "The Agency of the Letter in the Unconscious or Reason Since Freud," selected for the particular light it casts on Lacan's complex relation to linguistics, psychoanalysis, and philosophy. It clarifies the way Lacan renews or transforms the psychoanalytic field, through his diversion of Saussure's theory of the sign, his radicalization of Freud's fundamental concepts, and his subversion of dominant philosophical values. The authors argue, however, that Lacan's discourse is marked (...) by a deep ambiguity: while he invents a new "language," he nonetheless maintains the traditional metaphysical motifs of systemacity, foundation, and truth. (shrink)
This article argues that Axel Honneth’s ethics of recognition offers a robust model for a renewed critical theory of society, provided that it does not shy away from its political dimensions. First, the ethics of recognition needs to clarify its political moment at the conceptual level to remain conceptually sustainable. This requires a clarification of the notion of identity in relation to the three spheres of recognition, and a clarification of its exact place in a politics of recognition. We suggest (...) that a return to Hegel’s mature theory of subjectivity helps specify the relationship between the normative demand for autonomous identity and its realization in and through politics. (shrink)
In this paper, I consider succinctly the main Marxist objections to Honneth’s model of critical social theory, and Honneth’s key objections to Marx-inspired models. I then seek to outline a rapprochement between the two positions, by showing how Honneth’s normative concept of recognition is not antithetical to functionalist arguments, but in fact contains a social-theoretical dimension, the idea that social reproduction and social evolution revolve around struggles around the interpretation of core societal norms. By highlighting the social theoretical side of (...) recognition, one can outline a model of critical social theory that in fact corresponds to the descriptive and normative features outlined by Marx himself. However, the price of this rapprochement for Honnethian critical theory is a greater emphasis on the division of labour as the central mechanism of social reproduction. (shrink)
Our aim is to analyze the position of the leader in relation to the ethical dimension of truth-telling within the organization under his/her control. Based on Michel Foucault’s study of truth-telling, we demonstrate that the role of the leader toward the corporation and the imperative of organizational performance place the leader in an ambiguous position: he/she is obliged to take the lead in “telling the truth” internally and externally, but also to bear the consequences of this “truth-telling” for the organization (...) and for himself/herself. In this process of construction and implementing the truth, the leader is organizer and figurehead of the corporation’s truth-telling practices: determining the frontiers between truth that can be said and that which should remain hidden, both inside and outside the corporation; establishing a dialogue based on truth ; guaranteeing that the rules of truth-telling are respected; and offering a truth which is compatible with the firm’s economic and ethical interest. Invested with the authority—the office—of managing truth within the corporation, the leader can be considered to be the “Chief Truth Officer.” From this perspective, we demonstrate that this role requires specific skills, like courage and practical wisdom. (shrink)
This article aims to present some of the main results of contemporary French psychodynamics of work. The writings of Christophe Dejours constitute the central references in this area. His psychoanalytical approach, which is initially concerned with the impact of contemporary work practices on individual health, has implications that go well beyond the narrow psycho-pathological interest. The most significant theoretical development to have come out of Dejours's research is that of Yves Clot, whose writings will constitute the second reference point in (...) this article. The article attempts to demonstrate that the thick definition of work that Dejours and Clot operate with, as a result of their focus on its psychological function, speaks directly, in substantial and critical ways, to all disciplines with an interest in work, to philosophers, social theorists and social scientists, including economic theorists. (shrink)
Conscious awareness comprises two distinct states, autonoetic and noetic awareness. Schizophrenia impairs autonoetic, but not noetic, awareness. We investigated the strategic regulation of relevant and irrelevant contents of conscious awareness in schizophrenia using a directed forgetting paradigm. Twenty-one patients with schizophrenia and 21 normal controls were presented with words and told to learn some of them and forget others. In a subsequent test, they were asked to recognize all the words they had seen previously and give remember, know or guess (...) responses according to whether they recognized words on the basis of autonoetic awareness, noetic awareness, or guessing. Overall, patients showed the same degree of a directed forgetting effect as normal subjects. However, whereas the effect was observed both for remember and know responses in normal subjects, it was observed for know, but not for remember, responses in patients. These results indicate that patients with schizophrenia exhibit an impaired strategic regulation of contents of autonetic awareness for relevant and irrelevant information. (shrink)
Honneth's fundamental claim that the normativity of social orders can be found nowhere but in the very experience of those who suffer injustice leads, I argue, to a radical theory and critique of society, with the potential to provide an innovative theory of social movements and a valid alternative to political liberalism.
This article aims to present a new perspective on contemporary debates about the transformations of work and employment, and their impacts on individuals and communities, by focusing on the writings of Christophe Dejours. Basically, the article attempts to show that Dejours' writings make a significant contribution to contemporary social theory. This might seem like an odd claim to make, since Dejours' main training was in psychoanalysis and his main activity is the clinical, psychiatric study of pathologies linked to work. However, (...) in the course of his career, Dejours has greatly extended this initial clinical interest, and by integrating insights from philosophy and other social sciences, has developed a highly sophisticated and consistent theoretical model of work. Starting from a narrow psychopathological focus, Dejours has gradually developed a full-blown theoretical defence of the centrality of work. The article outlines the main features of Dejours' metapsychological model, and the structuring role played by work in his theory of subjective identity. This allows us to outline the originality of his approach by comparison with some of the most significant current accounts of the impact of transformations of work and employment conditions upon individuals and societies, notably Honneth, Castel and Sennett. (shrink)
In this essay, I take up James Conant and Cora Diamond’s suggestion that “to take the difference between saying and showing deeply enough is not to give up on showing but to give up on picturing it as a ‘what’ ”. I try to establish that the Tractatus’s talk of “showing” is more coherent than is usually appreciated, that it is indeed a key to the internal unity of the book, and that it positively helps us to work our way (...) into the practice of philosophy, which its author understood as a practice of logical clarification. Thus, it is not a stretch of latent nonsense whose sole function is to conjure up an illusion of sense for the sake of displaying its disintegration. While Wittgenstein’s concept of showing is not meant to “make up for” the impossibility of saying certain things, neither does it stand in need of being “redeemed.” Whether or not it is to prove ultimately coherent, the Tractatus’s talk of “showing,” I shall argue, is certainly not to be “thrown away” in the name of the Tractarian conception of logic, for the simple reason that it essentially belongs with it. (shrink)
This paper attempts to show that an expansive normative vision can be drawn from Hegel's texts, one whose scope significantly exceeds the anthropocentric model presented in the ‘objective spirit’ parts of his system. This expansion of normativity is linked to an expansive vision of relationality underpinning Hegel's model of ‘concrete freedom’. In order to put into sharper relief the links between expansive relationality and normativity, the late thinking of Maurice Merleau-Ponty is mobilized as a heuristic contrasting point. In the ‘subjective (...) spirit’ sections of the Encyclopaedia are found insights that anticipate key features of Merleau-Ponty's notion of ‘flesh’. Locating these insights allows us to detect the underlying thread this paper seeks to mine. Hegel's own ‘theory of flesh’ culminates in the notion of ‘constitutive attachments’, the idea that the content of subjectivity is made up of all the bonds linking the human subject to her surrounding worlds and objects. Since freedom for Hegel is ‘being with’, and since normative demands arise from the different ways in which freedom is concretely realized, it would seem that Hegel's relational conception of subjectivity should lead to an equally expansive conception of normativity. Against the objection that Hegel denied any normative status to non-human beings, the paper points to passages in his work, notably his account of aesthetic judgement and natural beauty, which appear to suggest the opposite. (shrink)
Jean-Philippe Deranty, Beyond Communication: A Critical Study of Axel Honneth's Social Philosophy Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 497-500 Authors Jørgen Pedersen, The Centre for the Study of the Sciences and the Humanities, Bergen, Norway Journal Critical Horizons: A Journal of Philosophy & Social Theory Online ISSN 1568-5160 Print ISSN 1440-9917 Journal Volume Volume 11 Journal Issue Volume 11, Number 3 / 2010.
In this article we examine the idea of a politics of misrecognition of working activity. We begin by introducing a distinction between the kind of recognition and misrecognition that attaches to one’s identity, and the kind of recognition and misrecognition that attaches to one’s activity. We then consider the political significance of the latter kind of recognition and misrecognition in the context of work. Drawing first on empirical research undertaken by sociologists at the Institut für Sozialforschung in Frankfurt, we argue (...) for a differentiated concept of recognition that shows the politics of misrecognition at work to be as much a matter of conflict between modes of recognition as it is a struggle for recognition as opposed to non -recognition. The differentiated concept of recognition which allows for this empirical insight owes much to Axel Honneth’s theory. But as we argue in the section that follows, this theory is ambiguous about the normative content of the expectations of recognition that are bound up with the activity of working. This in turn makes it unclear how we should understand the normative basis of the politics of the misrecognition of what one does at work. In the final sections of the article, we suggest that the psychodynamic model of work elaborated by Christophe Dejours and others at the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers in Paris can shed light on this matter; that is to say, it can help to clarify the normative significance and political stakes of the misrecognition of working activity. (shrink)
What interests us and claims our attention in Nazism is, essentially, its ideology, in the definition Hannah Arendt has given of this term in her book on The Origins of Totalitarianism. In this work, ideology is defined as the totally self-fulfilling logic of an idea, an idea “by which the movement of history is explained as one consistent process.” “The movement of history and the logical process of this notion,” Arendt continues, “are supposed to correspond to each other, so that (...) whatever happens, happens according to the logic of one ‘idea.’”2Ideology, in other words, interests us and claims our attention insofar as, on the one hand, it always proposes itself as a political explanation of the world, that is, as an explanation of history on the basis of a single concept—the concept of race, for example, or the concept of class—and insofar as, on the other hand, this ideological explanation or conception of the world seeks to be a total explanation or conception. This totality signifies that the explanation is indisputable, leaving neither gaps nor remainders—unlike philosophical thought, from which ideology shamelessly draws the greater part of its resources but which is characterized by a risky, problematic style, what Arendt calls the “insecurity” of philosophical questioning . 2. Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism , p. 469; hereafter abbreviated OT. Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe and Jean-Luc Nancy teach at the University of Human Sciences of Strasbourg, France, and are also visiting professors at the University of California, Berkeley. They are coauthors of The Literary Absolute and, related to the topic of politics, “The Jewish People Don’t Dream” . Lacoue-Labarthe is also the author of Typography and La Fiction du politique . Nancy has written “Sharing Voices” in Transforming Hermeneutics and La Communauté désoeuvrée . Brian Holmes is a doctoral candidate in romance languages and literatures at the University of California, Berkeley, and editor of the journal Qui Parle. He is currently at work on the parody of authorial identity in Cervantes and Flaubert. (shrink)
Although relatively unknown a decade ago, the work of Jacques Ranciere is fast becoming a central reference in the humanities and social sciences. His thinking brings a fresh, innovative approach to many fields, notably the study of work, education, politics, literature, film, art, as well as philosophy. This is the first, full-length introduction to Ranciere's work and covers the full range of his contribution to contemporary thought, presenting in clear, succinct chapters the key concepts Ranciere has developed in his writings (...) over the last forty years. Students new to Ranciere will find this work accessible and comprehensive, an ideal introduction to this major thinker. For readers already familiar with Ranciere, the in-depth analysis of each key concept, written by leading scholars, should provide an ideal reference. (shrink)
This article seeks to re-evaluate the importance of the political in the thinking of Maurice Merleau-Ponty. The article first shows that Sartre’s description of Merleau-Ponty’s intellectual trajectory as one of increasing political apathy from the 1950s onwards is inaccurate. The article then demonstrates that throughout the post-war period, including in his project for a new ontology, Merleau-Ponty believed that a revised version of Marxism would provide the methodological framework within which philosophical work could address the political challenges of the present. (...) This revised Marxism was to be a direct alternative to the reifying uses of Marx’s thinking. It would rely upon the latter’s self-reflexive historicism, which meant its very failures showed how philosophy might transform itself in connection with its own time. Cet article tente souligner la place du politique dans la pensée de Maurice Merleau-Ponty. On contestera d’abord la description faite par Sartre de sa trajectoire intellectuelle, selon laquelle il aurait fait preuve d’une apathie croissante, à partir des années cinquante, vis-à-vis des questions politiques. On montrera ensuite que durant toute la période d’après-guerre, jusque dans les recherches ontologiques ultimes, Merleau-Ponty a pensé qu’un usage renouvelé du marxisme permettrait au travail philosophique de répondre aux défis politiques du présent. Une telle révision du marxisme représentait une alternative directe aux usages réifiant de la pensée de Marx. Cette révision serait rendue possible par la réflexivité historiciste de cette pensée, qui fait que, dans ses erreurs mêmes, celle-ci révèle la capacité de la philosophie à se transformer au contact de son temps. (shrink)
The paper examines briefly Kant's and Fichte's, and more thoroughly, Hegel's theses on womanhood and their social and political consequences. It shows, taking Hegel as a case study, that the idealists' conceptual frameworks should have led them to recognize the rights of women, and, importantly, in Kant's and Hegel's case, that they implicitly did so. However, they chose to repress these unwanted outcomes behind teachings that were more in line with the beliefs of their time. This tension, it is argued (...) in conclusion, is indicative of a conceptual crux that is specific to German idealism, but whose effects can still be perceived today. (shrink)
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