It is argued on a variety of grounds that recent results in 'experimental philosophy of language', which appear to show that there are significant cross-cultural differences in intuitions about the reference of proper names, do not pose a threat to a more traditional mode of philosophizing about reference. Some of these same grounds justify a complaint about experimental philosophy as a whole.
Practitioners of the new ‘experimental philosophy’ have collected data that appear to show that some philosophical intuitions are culturally variable. Many experimental philosophers take this to pose a problem for a more traditional, ‘armchair’ style of philosophizing. It is argued that this is a mistake that derives from a false assumption about the character of philosophical methods; neither philosophy nor its methods have anything to fear from cultural variability in philosophical intuitions.
Avner Baz claims that questions philosophers ask about hypothetical cases lack the kind of ‘point’ possessed by ‘everyday’ questions. He concludes from this that there is something wrong with the philosophical practice of asking questions about hypothetical cases. This paper defends the practice from Baz’s criticism.
I argue in this paper that the existence of sorites series of color patches – series of color patches arranged so that the patches on each end look different in color though no two adjacent patches do – shows that the relation of same phenomenal character as is not a transitive relation. I then argue that the intransitivity of same phenomenal character as conflicts with certain versions of intentionalism, the view that an experiences phenomenal character is exhausted, or fully determined (...) by its intentional content. Lastly, I consider various objections to the arguments and reply to them. (shrink)
Radical Millianism agrees with less radical varieties in claiming that ordinary proper names lack “descriptive senses” and that the semantic content of such a name is just its referent but differs from less radical varieties of Millianism in claiming that any pair of sentences differing only in the exchange of coreferential names cannot differ in truth-value. This is what makes Radical Millianism radical. The view is surprisingly popular these days, and it is popular despite the fact that, until very recently, (...) there was not a single argument for it. Theodore Sider and David Braun (2006) have tried to provide the missing argument, but, I argue, their attempt fails. I conclude that we (still) have no reason to be Radical Millians. (shrink)
Representationalist theories of the phenomenal character of conscious experience are attractive because they promise a simpler 'naturalization' of the mind. However, I argue that representationalists cannot endorse an otherwise attractive externalist theory of the representational contents of conscious experiences. The combination of representationalism and externalism conflicts with a true principle linking phenomenal character to perceptual indistinguishability.
Materialism about the mind is the view that the mind and its properties are physical. Many believe that there is a serious problem for materialism about the mind stemming from the phenomenon of conscious experience. It is alleged by some that conscious experiences possess features that cannot be possessed by any physical thing. And, even many materialists agree that conscious experiences possess features that make it difficult to see how conscious experiences could be physical things. Consciousness and the Insignificance of (...) Materialism examines this supposed clash between consciousness and physicality. The conclusion reached is that the clash is an illusion. It is an illusion fostered by certain false assumptions, made by materialists and anti-materialists alike, about the nature of physicality. However, it is argued that this is a hollow victory for materialism about the mind. Once the nature of physicality is appropriately characterized, materialism about the mind is revealed as true, but uninterestingly true. In other words, materialism about the mind is an insignificant view concerning the nature of the mind and mentality. (shrink)
This book is a defense of the methods of analytic philosophy against a recent empirical challenge to the soundness of those methods. The challenge is raised by practitioners of “experimental philosophy” and concerns the extent to which analytic philosophy relies on intuition—in particular, the extent to which analytic philosophers treat intuitions as evidence in arguing for philosophical conclusions. Experimental philosophers say that analytic philosophers place a great deal of evidential weight on people’s intuitions about hypothetical cases and thought experiments. This (...) book argues that this view of traditional philosophical method is a myth, part of “metaphilosophical folklore.” Analytic philosophy makes regular use of hypothetical examples and thought experiments, but philosophers argue for their claims about what is true or not true in these examples and thought experiments. It is these arguments, not intuitions, that are treated as evidence for the claims. The book discusses xphi and some recent xphi studies; critiques a variety of other metaphilosophical claims; examines such famous arguments as Gettier’s refutation of the JTB theory and Kripke’s Gödel Case argument against descriptivism about proper names, and shows that they rely on reasoning rather than intuition; and finds existing critiques of xphi, the “Multiple Concepts” and “Expertise” replies, to be severely lacking. (shrink)
‘Intuition deniers’ are those who—like Timothy Williamson, Max Deutsch, Herman Cappelen and a few others—reject the claim that philosophers centrally rely on intuitions as evidence. This ‘Centrality’ hypothesis, as Cappelen terms it, is standardly endorsed both by traditionalists and by experimental philosophers. Yet the intuition deniers claim that Centrality is false—and they generally also suggest that this undermines the significance of experimental philosophy. Three primary types of anti-Centrality argument have cross-cut the literature thus far. These arguments, I’ll claim, have (...) differing potential consequences on metaphilosophical debate. The first sort of argument centers on worries about the term ‘intuition’—for instance, worries about whether it has clear application, or whether anything actually falls under it. Call this the Argument from Unclear Application. The second argument type involves the claim that evidence in philosophy consists not of facts about intuitions, but of facts about e.g. knowledge and causation. Call this the Argument from Antipsychologism. The third type involves an attempt to demonstrate that philosophers support their claims not via bald appeal to intuition, but via argumentation. Call this the Argument from Argumentation. Although these three arguments have merit, none of them undermines the importance of experimental philosophy. Nonetheless, they do have significant consequences for the methodological debates that dominate meta-philosophy, and for experimental philosophy in particular. (shrink)
In this article, we discuss critically some of the key themes in Max Deutsch’s excellent book, The Myth of the Intuitive. We focus in particular on the shortcomings of his historical analysis – a missed opportunity by our lights, on the claim that philosophers present arguments in support of the judgments elicited by thought experiments, and on the claim that experimental philosophy is only relevant for the methodology of philosophy if thought experiments elicit intuitions.
Max Deutsch’s new book argues against the commonly held ‘myth’ that philosophical methodology characteristically employs intuitions as evidence. While I am sympathetic to the general claim that philosophical methodology has been grossly oversimplified in the intuition literature, the particular claim that it is a myth that philosophers rely on intuitions as evidence is open to several very different interpretations. The plausibility and consequences of a rejection of the ‘myth’ will depend on the notion of evidence one employs, the notion (...) of intuition one holds, and how one understands the idea of ‘relying on’ or ‘employing’ something as evidence. I describe what I take to be the version of The Myth which is most plausibly undermined by Deutsch’s arguments; however, I also argue that the falsity of this myth has only minimal consequences for the viability of the experimental philosophy research project. (shrink)
Disjunctivism has triggered an intense discussion about the nature of perceptual experience. A question in its own right concerns possible historical antecedents of the position. So far, Frege and Husserl are the most prominent names that have been mentioned in this regard. In my paper I shall argue that Max Scheler deserves a particularly relevant place in the genealogy of disjunctivism for three main reasons. First, Scheler’s view of perceptual experience is distinctively disjunctivist, as he explicitly argues that perceptions and (...) hallucinations differ in nature. Second, his version of the position is philosophically interesting in its own right. This is so primarily, though not exclusively, in virtue of the positive story he tells us about perceptual content. Third, Scheler’s case proves particularly instructive to the question of whether intentionalism and disjunctivism constitute a fundamental, unbridgeable divide. (shrink)
Deutsch and Hayden claim to have provided an account of quantum mechanics which is particularly local, and which clarifies the nature of information transmission in entangled quantum systems. In this paper, a perspicuous description of their formalism is offered and their claim assessed. It proves essential to distinguish, as Deutsch and Hayden do not, between two ways of interpreting the formalism. On the first, conservative, interpretation, no benefits with respect to locality accrue that are not already available on (...) either an Everettian or a statistical interpretation; and the conclusions regarding information flow are equivocal. The second, ontological, interpretation, offers a framework with the novel feature that global properties of quantum systems are reduced to local ones; but no conclusions follow concerning information flow in more standard quantum mechanics. (shrink)
Deutsch and Hayden have proposed an alternative formulation of quantum mechanics which is completely local. We argue that their proposal must be understood as having a form of ‘gauge freedom’ according to which mathematically distinct states are physically equivalent. Once this gauge freedom is taken into account, their formulation is no longer local.
Max Weber and Michael Foucault are among the most controversial and fascinating thinkers of our century. This book is the first to jointly analyse them in detail, and to make effective links between their lives and work; it coincides with a substantial resurgence of interest in their writings. The author's exciting interpretative approach reveals a new dimension in reading the work of Foucault and Weber; it will be invaluable to students and those researching in sociology and philosophy.
Zusammenfassung Dieser Beitrag widmet sich dem Zusammenhang zwischen dem deutschen Idealismus und Max Müllers Religionswissenschaft, die als erstes und maßgebendes religionswissenschaftliches Projekt betrachtet werden kann. Es wird aufgezeigt, dass die Entwicklung der Lehre Müllers erst durch Kants Kritizismus, Schleiermachers Gefühlsphilosophie und durch die idealistische Religionsphilosophie von F. Schelling und Chr. Weisse ermöglicht wurde. Es kann auch der Einfluss der Philosophie von J. Fries aufgespürt werden. Müllers Blick auf das religiöse Leben der Menschheit hat einen philosophischen Charakter und wird wesentlich durch (...) die Methodologie des deutschen Idealismus geprägt. Es gibt dennoch zwei Hauptunterschiede zwischen Müllers Religionswissenschaft und der früheren Religionsphilosophie. Zum einen benutzt Müller systematisch Originalquellen in östlichen Sprachen. Zum anderen geht Müller dadurch über die europäische Denktradition hinaus und versucht, in nichteuropäische Traditionen einzudringen und diese zu verstehen. Der deutsche Idealismus eben ermöglicht einen solchen bedeutenden Zug der Religionswissenschaft wie die Anerkennung der Diskrepanz zwischen dem, was in einem Gespräch über die Religion gesagt wird, und dem persönlichen Verhältnis des Gelehrten dazu. (shrink)
Max Weber's distinction in "Politics as a Vocation" between the ethic of conviction and the ethic of responsibility is best understood as a distinction between mutually exclusive ethical worldviews. Interpretations that correlate the two ethics with Weber's distinction between value-rational social action and instrumental-rational social action are misleading since Weber assumes that both types of rational social action are present in both ethics. The ethic of conviction recognizes a given hierarchy of values as the context for moral endeavor. The ethic (...) of responsibility acknowledges value obligations, but assumes the absence of any given hierarchy of values and the inevitability of value conflict as the context for moral endeavor. When interpreted in the context of his multilayered understanding of value conflict, Weber's ethic of responsibility emerges as a coherent ethical perspective. (shrink)
O artigo constitui-se de uma apresentação sucinta dos elementos principais do sistema ético de Max Scheler. Utilizando-se do método fenomenológico, Scheler afirma que a ética deve basear-se na experiência, pois o valor não é algo que se atribui, mas que é experimentado. O fenomenólogo alemão defende que o homem está rodeado por um cosmos de valores que não necessita ser produzido, apenas reconhecido através do perceber sentimental, possibilitando, inclusive, uma organização hierárquica dos valores. No entanto, este perceber se encontra afetado (...) pelo ressentimento, o que implica em uma negação dos valores através da inversão valorativa. (shrink)
In his book on P max , Woodin presents a collection of partial orders whose extensions satisfy strong club guessing principles on ω | . In this paper we employ one of the techniques from this book to produce P max variations which separate various club guessing principles. The principle (+) and its variants are weak guessing principles which were first considered by the second author  while studying games of length ω | . It was shown in  that (...) the Continuum Hypothesis does not imply (+) and that (+) does not imply the existence of a club guessing sequence on ω | . In this paper we give an alternate proof of the second of these results, using Woodin's P max technology, showing that a strengthening of (+) does not imply a weakening of club guessing known as the Interval Hitting Principle. The main technique in this paper, in addition to the standard P m a x machinery, is the use of condensation principles to build suitable iterations. (shrink)
The present contribution aims at defining the relation between cybernetics and social theory from the perspective of society as order. After an historical framework of the cybernetic movement, a careful reading of the works of Norbert Wiener, in which he introduced the concept of feed-back and the idea of information society, has revealed a keen awareness about the social effects of technological innovation. Among the social scientists who had made use of cybernetic concepts, it has been considered the work of (...) Karl Deutsch, which was one of the first completely cybernetic perspective for the study of political and social phenomena. The main conclusion is that cybernetics, as a meeting point between different disciplines, has produced an image of self-regulated society in line with the image of society as order. (shrink)
This paper aims at revealing the originality of Max Weber’s conception of the logical category of “historicity”, suggesting that in his writings on the methodology of the social sciences we can find a stimulating and forerunner contribution to the analysis of some logical and formal problems concerning the relationship between human knowledge and the chaos of reality (what we might call, ante-litteram, “science of chaos”). In particular, considering that in Weber’s conception scientific knowledge finds no facts “to grasp” in the (...) natural world, but rather a chaos of unique and infinitely divisible events, the analysis will be focused on the following aspects: (a) Weber’s separation of causal imputation from the notion of necessary (natural) law; (b) the importance attached to “probability judgments” with different degrees of certainty; (c) the proclaimed irreducibility of individual events to scientific models, laws, and (ideal)-types; (d) the effects imputed to the differentiation of the point of view of a scientific observer. (shrink)
Early in his career, Max Deutscher he started to explore questions in the philosophy of mind, which continue to interest him. His early reading of Jean-Paul Sartre, and the work of Gilbert Ryle, informs all his work. My paper traces the theme of genre in philosophy as it is exemplified and discussed throughout Deutscher’s work, including Judgment After Arendt (2007).
Virtue as Value: A Comparison between Christoph Halbig and Max Scheler The aim of the following contribution is to compare the virtue conceptions of Christoph Halbig and Max Scheler in order to scrutinize their common positions and differences and thus to answer two questions: Firstly, is it true that Scheler's approach is based on the basic assumptions of the recursive theory of virtues, as Halbig asserts this? Secondly, can the virtues be defined as attitudes, or should they be conceived as (...) qualities of the person? In addition, the author examines the connection of virtues and emotions more closely and shows that virtues can be regarded as a kind of transformers from the negative to the positive, because they fix the right way of dealing with negative emotions and because they switch over the negative basic mood into a positive and joyful one. The reflection of these questions is embedded in a constant reference to Aristotle's understanding of virtues. (shrink)
This paper examines Max Adler's philosophical thought, in order to elucidate how he was able to spot a religious meaning in the materialistic conception of history and to understand his connection to Judaism. The first part expounds on how the prominence of religious issues was perceived in the Marxist milieu; the second part analyzes Adler's particular position, above all in harmony with Kantian philosophy; and the third part brings out the essential differences between Adler's and Kant's ideas on religion. Finally (...) the paper shows how Adler's hope in an ultramundane salvation of mankind separates his interpretation from Jewish messianism. (shrink)
In this essay I elaborate on the theoretical framework – that of Millian liberalism – that Max Charlesworth brought to many public issues, including that of the relation between education and religion. I will then apply this framework to a debate in which I have been recently involved myself: a debate around the provision of religious instruction in public schools. In the first section I expound Charlesworth’s rejection of secularism in education in a liberal pluralist state and his defence of (...) faith-based schooling. In the second section I uncover the religious motivations behind the Victorian government’s 1950 amendments to the apparently secularist Victorian Education Act of 1872. In section three, I explore the notion of secularism more fully and suggest that the struggle between those who espouse religious instruction in state schools and those who oppose it while advocating a more general form of education about religion is a symptom of a deeper tension between liberalism and communitarianism within the culture of modernist, liberal states. (shrink)
Apresentamos Max Weber como um dos sociólogos e historiadores mais importantes dentre aqueles que se dedicaram ao estudo do fenômeno religioso. Na verdade, é possível afirmar que a análise da religião compreende um dos aspectos mais fundamentais de sua obra sócio-histórica. De modo geral, esse tema aparece em seus textos de duas maneiras diferentes, quais sejam: enquanto um objeto analisado em sua singularidade e enquanto uma manifestação social que influencia de maneira significativa os demais aspectos da vida comunitária. Aqui, observamos (...) como ele muniu-se de um método particular e o utilizou como parâmetro para compreender historicamente a religião. Ao se debruçar sobre as religiões mundiais (confucionismo-taoísmo, judaísmo-cristianismo e hinduísmo-budismo), Weber estuda a racionalização cultural de suas cosmovisões. Todavia, para ele, a influência da religião sobre a vida prática varia muito segundo o caminho da salvação/libertação que é prescrito e segundo a qualidade psíquica (ou imaginada) da salvação que se pretende alcançar. Palavras-chave : Max Weber; Religião; Religiões Mundiais; Racionalização.We present Max Weber as one of the most important sociologists and historians among those who dedicated themselves to the study of the religious phenomenon. Actually, it is possible to say that the analysis of religion involves one of the most fundamental aspects of his socio-historical work. As a whole, this subject appears in his texts in two different forms, i.e., as an analyzed object in its particularities, and as a social manifestation which influences, in a significant way, the other aspects of communitarian life. Here, we observe how he equipped himself with a particular method, rescued Kantian rationality and applied it as a parameter to historically understand religion. While he dedicated himself to study world religions (Confucianism-Taoism, Judaism-Christianity, and Hinduism-Buddhism), Weber analyzes the cultural rationalization of his cosmovisions. However, for him, the influence of religion over practical life varies a lot according to the path of salvation/liberation which is prescribed in terms of the psychological (imagined) quality of the salvation which is intended to be reached. Key words : Max Weber; Religion; World Religions; Rationalization. (shrink)
Recientemente se ha avanzado en algunas variaciones a la interpretación estándar de la obras de Max Weber. De entre estas variaciones hay una visión no-sociológia del corpus weberiano. Aquí trato de mostrar algunas implicaciones de esta nueva posición para la metodología de las ciencias sociales, y ofrezco un panorama bibliográfico del asunto.
In his social theory, Max Weber (1864 – 1920) attempts to identify patterns that have distinguished Western rationality. Music, he argues, is one of the domains that exhibit such structures. As a specific instance, Weber cites counterpoint as developed in 15th century Europe and – so he claims – culminating in Bach’s music. “No other epoch and culture possesses it”, Weber asserts. Counterpoint’s rationality is meant to manifest itself in rules; yet Weber’s approach lacks an analysis of such rules. Remarkably, (...) 18th century music theory brought the social meaning of counterpoint to the fore more sharply than did Weber’s sociology of music. (shrink)
_Edward Bibring Photographs the Psychoanalysts of His Time_ provides us with a unique pictorial window into a fascinating period of psychoanalytic history. It is the gift of Edward Bibring, a passionate photographer who, Rolleiflex in hand, chronicled international psychoanalytic congresses from 1932 to 1938. The period in question spans the ascendancy of Hitler, the great exodus of analysts to England and the U.S., and the Anschluss of 1938. A year after the Paris Congress, the last meeting photographed by Bibring, Europe (...) would be in flames. At Wiesbaden in 1932, we find an ever dignified Ernest Jones relaxing aboard a sight-seeing ship, and Helene Deutsch and Heinz Hartmann delightfully at ease at a coffee shop. At the Lucerne Congress of 1934, Anna Freud, Ludwig Jekels, Wilhelm Reich, Grete Bibring, Max Eitingon, and Franz Alexander happily converse outside a hotel. At Marienbad in 1936, there are smiling new faces: Annie Reich, Ernst Kris, Otto Fenichel, Edward Glover, and others. At Budapest in1937 the women – Anna Freud, Vilma Kovacs, Dorothy Burlingham, and Elisabeth Geleerd – speak animatedly among themselves. A demure Margaret Mahler and a chic Marianne Kris make their appearance. In 1938, we see a series of table shots, where analysts, now with suit jackets removed and even a few collars loosened, relax with their food, wine, and cigars. Bracketed by Sanford Gifford’s brief introduction and biographical sketches of all the captured parties, Bibring’s photographs, digitized and enlarged, retain just enough graininess to evoke a different era in the history of psychoanalysis. It is heartening to see the paragons of “classical psychoanalysis” as warmly human, their analytic reserve supplanted by relaxed affability. But it is sobering to remember that the high spirit engendered by Congresses – in Bibring’s time no less than our own – may overlay the gravest political developments and the deepest personal anxieties. (shrink)
First published in 1965, this collection of three essays by influential German philosopher Karl Jaspers deals with the response of the philosophical mind to the world of reality, with the search for truth. In Leonardo, this search is shown in the thinking and the works of a supreme artist whose means of apperception are the senses. The essay on Max Weber commemorates a man Jaspers knew personally and ardently admired. The main essay in the collection is an exhaustive, three part (...) study of Descartes: analysing Descartes’ new philosophical operation, Descartes’ Method, and the position of his philosophy within the wider historical context of philosophical thought. (shrink)