Aim To provide insights into the students' attitude towards academic integrity and their perspective of academic honesty at Croatian medical schools.Methods A cross-sectional study using an anonymous questionnaire containing 29 questions on frequency of cheating, perceived seriousness of cheating, perceptions on integrity atmosphere, cheating behaviour of peers and on willingness to report misconduct. Participants were third-year and fifth-year students from all four Croatian Schools of Medicine. Outcome measures were descriptive statistical correlates and differences in students' self-reported educational dishonesty, perceptions of (...) cheating behaviour and medical school integrity atmosphere.Results Of the 1074 students enrolled in the third and fifth year, 662 completed the questionnaire. A large proportion of the students admitted using some method of cheating and 78% admitted engaging in at least one form of misconduct. About 50% had a lenient attitude towards six acts of academic dishonesty. Only 2% reported another student for cheating. Risk factors for cheating were strongly correlated with students' perceptions of peer cheating behaviour, peer approval of cheating, low perception of seriousness of cheating and inappropriate severity level of exams and teaching materials.Conclusions Cheating is prevalent in Croatian medical schools and academic dishonesty is seen as acceptable behaviour among numerous future Croatian doctors. (shrink)
Aim To provide insights into the students' attitude towards academic integrity and their perspective of academic honesty at Croatian medical schools. Methods A cross-sectional study using an anonymous questionnaire containing 29 questions on frequency of cheating, perceived seriousness of cheating, perceptions on integrity atmosphere, cheating behaviour of peers and on willingness to report misconduct. Participants were third-year (preclinical) and fifth-year (clinical) students from all four Croatian Schools of Medicine. Outcome measures were descriptive statistical correlates and differences in students' self-reported educational (...) dishonesty, perceptions of cheating behaviour and medical school integrity atmosphere. Results Of the 1074 students enrolled in the third and fifth year, 662 (62%) completed the questionnaire. A large proportion of the students (97%) admitted using some method of cheating and 78% admitted engaging in at least one form of misconduct. About 50% had a lenient attitude towards six acts of academic dishonesty. Only 2% reported another student for cheating. Risk factors for cheating were strongly correlated with students' perceptions of peer cheating behaviour, peer approval of cheating, low perception of seriousness of cheating and inappropriate severity level of exams and teaching materials. Conclusions Cheating is prevalent in Croatian medical schools and academic dishonesty is seen as acceptable behaviour among numerous future Croatian doctors. (shrink)
Objectives To investigate high school cheating experiences and attitudes towards academic misconduct of freshmen at all four medical schools in Croatia, as a post-communist country in transition, with intention of raising awareness of academic honesty. Design and method Students were given an anonymous questionnaire containing 22 questions on the atmosphere of integrity at their high school, self-reported educational dishonesty, their evaluation of cheating behaviour, and on their expectations about the atmosphere of integrity at their university. Setting All schools of medicine (...) of Croatian universities . Main measures Descriptive statistics and differences in students' self-reported educational dishonesty, perception of cheating behaviour, and perception of the high school integrity atmosphere. Results Of the 761 freshmen attending the four medical schools, 508 completed the questionnaire: 481 Croatian and 27 international students. Of the Croatian respondents, almost all self-reported engaging in at least one behaviour of educational dishonesty, and 78% of respondents admitted to having frequently cheated in at least one form of assessed academic misconduct. Only three students admitted to having reported another student for cheating. For most of the questions, there was no significant difference in the responses among Croatian students. However, significant differences were found in most responses between Croatian students and their international counterparts, who were significantly less likely to engage in dishonest behaviours. No individual factor was found to correlate with the incidence of self-admitted dishonest behaviour. Frequent cheaters evaluated academic dishonesty significantly more leniently than those who did not cheat. Conclusion Academic dishonesty of university students does not begin in higher education; students come to medical schools ready to cheat. (shrink)
Objectives To investigate high school cheating experiences and attitudes towards academic misconduct of freshmen at all four medical schools in Croatia, as a post-communist country in transition, with intention of raising awareness of academic (dis)honesty. Design and method Students were given an anonymous questionnaire containing 22 questions on the atmosphere of integrity at their high school, self-reported educational dishonesty, their evaluation of cheating behaviour, and on their expectations about the atmosphere of integrity at their university. Setting All schools of medicine (...) of Croatian universities (Zagreb, Rijeka, Split and Osijek). Main measures Descriptive statistics and differences in students' self-reported educational dishonesty, perception of cheating behaviour, and perception of the high school integrity atmosphere. Results Of the 761 freshmen attending the four medical schools, 508 (67%) completed the questionnaire: 481 Croatian and 27 international students. Of the Croatian respondents, almost all (>99%) self-reported engaging in at least one behaviour of educational dishonesty, and 78% of respondents admitted to having frequently cheated in at least one form of assessed academic misconduct. Only three students admitted to having reported another student for cheating. For most of the questions, there was no significant difference in the responses among Croatian students. However, significant differences were found in most responses between Croatian students and their international counterparts, who were significantly less likely to engage in dishonest behaviours. No individual factor was found to correlate with the incidence of self-admitted dishonest behaviour. Frequent cheaters evaluated academic dishonesty significantly more leniently than those who did not cheat. Conclusion Academic dishonesty of university students does not begin in higher education; students come to medical schools ready to cheat. (shrink)
Kripke-style models with two accessibility relations, one intuitionistic and the other modal, are given for analogues of the modal systemK based on Heyting's prepositional logic. It is shown that these two relations can combine with each other in various ways. Soundness and completeness are proved for systems with only the necessity operator, or only the possibility operator, or both. Embeddings in modal systems with several modal operators, based on classical propositional logic, are also considered. This paper lays the ground for (...) an investigation of intuitionistic analogues of systems stronger thanK. A brief survey is given of the existing literature on intuitionistic modal logic. (shrink)
The Kiki-Bouba effect comprises a relation between two abstract figures and two non-words: the star-shaped figure is called 'Kiki' and the rounded figure 'Bouba'. The effect is explained by a sound-vision synaesthesia: certain sounds are associated with certain shapes in a non-arbitrary manner.When we asked the participants to decide which of the two figures, the star-shaped or the rounded one, to call yin and which yang, some 85% choose the star-shaped figure as yin. There are previous cases of synaesthesia where (...) personality is attributed to numbers or letters. In our results, the word Kiki is overall happy, clever, small, thin, young, unpleasant, and nervous. The starshaped figure is overall clever, tall, small, slim, nervous, unpleasant, and upper-class. That is, the correspondence above all concerns the qualifying adjectives clever, unpleasant, and nervous, as well as the physical appearance small and thin. This brings us to the fat-thin effect. Cinema, literature, comics, and children's programmes are full of contrasting figures: Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, Laurel and Hardy , Asterix and Obelix, Tintin and Captain Haddock, Bert and Ernie , or the Spanish comic about very naughty twin boys called Zipi and Zape . Our main conclusion is that first names and last names are not entirely arbitrary. There is a correspondence between names and physical characteristics and concepts . The Kiki-Bouba effect is a semantic one. (shrink)
:There are manifold intriguing issues located within largely unexplored borderlands of bioethics, future studies, and astrobiology. Human enhancement has for quite some time been among the foci of bioethical debates, but the same cannot be said about its global, transgenerational, and even cosmological consequences. In recent years, discussions of posthuman and, in general terms, postbiological civilization have slowly gained a measure of academic respect, in parallel with the renewed interest in the entire field of future studies and the great strides (...) made in understanding of the origin and evolution of life and intelligence in their widest, cosmic context. These developments promise much deeper synergic answers to questions regarding the long-term future of enhancement: how far can it go? Is human enhancement a further step toward building a true postbiological civilization? Should we actively participate and help shape this process? Is the future of humanity “typical” in the same Copernican sense as our location in space and time is typical in the galaxy, and if so, can we derive important insights about the evolutionary pathways of postbiological evolution from astrobiological and Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence studies? These and similar questions could be understood as parts of a possible unifying research program attempting to connect cultural and moral evolution with what we know and understand about their cosmological and biological counterparts. (shrink)
Recent discussion of the alleged adverse consequences of space colonization by Phil Torres in this journal is critically assessed. While the concern for suffering risks should be part of any strategic discussion of the cosmic future of humanity, the Hobbesian picture painted by Torres is largely flawed and unpersuasive. Instead, there is a very real risk that the skeptical arguments will be taken too seriously and future human flourishing in space delayed or prevented.
This article approaches the paradigm shift of datafication from the perspective of civil society. Looking at how individuals and groups engage with datafication, it complements the notion of “data politics” by exploring what we call the “contentious politics of data”. By contentious politics of data we indicate the bottom-up, transformative initiatives interfering with and/or hijacking dominant processes of datafication, contesting existing power relations or re-appropriating data practices and infrastructure for purposes distinct from the intended. Said contentious politics of data is (...) articulated in an array of practices of data activism taking a critical stance towards datafication. In data activism, data as mediators take a central role, both as part of an action repertoire or as objects of struggle in their own right. Leveraging social movement studies and science and technology studies, this theoretical essay argues that data activism can be mapped along two analytical dimensions: “data as stakes” vs. “data as repertoires”, and “individual practice vs. collective action”. Mapping action repertoires and tactics along these axes allows us to chart the potential emergence of a political data subject at the intersection of these two dimensions. This furthers our understanding of people’s engagement with data in relation to other forms of activism and existing work in social movement studies. It also helps us interpreting potential trajectories of contemporary social movements, as they increasingly interface with data, devices and platforms. (shrink)
We describe a significant practical consequence of taking anthropic biases into account in deriving predictions for rare stochastic catastrophic events. The risks associated with catastrophes such as asteroidal/cometary impacts, supervolcanic episodes, and explosions of supernovae/gamma-ray bursts are based on their observed frequencies. As a result, the frequencies of catastrophes that destroy or are otherwise incompatible with the existence of observers are systematically underestimated. We describe the consequences of the anthropic bias for estimation of catastrophic risks, and suggest some directions for (...) future work. (shrink)
We historically trace various non-conventional explanations for the origin of the cosmic microwave background and discuss their merit, while analyzing the dynamics of their rejection, as well as the relevant physical and methodological reasons for it. It turns out that there have been many such unorthodox interpretations; not only those developed in the context of theories rejecting the relativistic paradigm entirely but also those coming from the camp of original thinkers firmly entrenched in the relativistic milieu. In fact, the orthodox (...) interpretation has only incrementally won out against the alternatives over the course of the three decades of its multi-stage development. While on the whole, none of the alternatives to the hot Big Bang scenario is persuasive today, we discuss the epistemic ramifications of establishing orthodoxy and eliminating alternatives in science, an issue recently discussed by philosophers and historians of science for other areas of physics. Finally, we single out some plausible and possibly fruitful ideas offered by the alternatives. (shrink)
Cosmology seems extremely remote from everyday human practice and experience. It is usually taken for granted that cosmological data cannot rationally influence our beliefs about the fate of humanity—and possible other intelligent species—except perhaps in the extremely distant future, when the issue of “heat death” (in an ever-expanding universe) becomes actual. Here, an attempt is made to show that it may become a practical question much sooner, if an intelligent community wishes to maximize its creative potential. We estimate, on the (...) basis of a greatly simplified model, the rate of loss of potentially useful information due to the delay in undertaking the colonization of the largest gravitationally bound structures in an accelerating universe. In addition, we argue for a natural cosmological extension of the classical taxonomy of advanced technological communities given by Kardashev. New developments in the fields of anthropic self-selection and physical eschatology give, for the first time, solid foundations to such results. This may open some new (and possibly urgent) issues in the areas of future policy making and transhumanist studies generally. It may also give us a slightly better perspective on the SETI endeavor. (shrink)
The paper addresses the ‘rational choice only’ reconstruction, characterization, and interpretation of classical and neoclassical economics. It argues that such a reconstruction is inaccurate failing to do justice to the dual theoretical character of classical/neoclassical economics. The paper instead proposes and shows that the latter involves not only elements of ‘rational choice theory’ but also those of an alternative conception. It identifies various and important ideas, observations, and implications of irrational choice and action within classical/neoclassical economics. One class of such (...) ingredients involves forms, expressions, and cases—i.e. specification and classification—of irrational choices in the economy. Another class comprises the social and other factors—i.e. economic sociology or social economics—of irrational choices in the economy. The paper’s intended contribution is to help identify and clarify the extant sources and alternatives of rational choice theory in conventional economics.... (shrink)
The article reconsiders the generalization of neoclassical economics by modern rational choice theory. Hence, it reexamines the possible theoretical grounds or lack thereof within neoclassical economics for economic imperialism implied in much of rational choice theory. Some indicative instances of rational choice theory's generalization of neoclassical economics are reviewed. The main portion of the article addresses the question as to whether neoclassical economics allows its generalization in rational choice theory and thus legitimizes economic imperialism. Presented are a number of pertinent (...) theoretical reasons why neoclassical economics does not fully justify its generalization into rational choice as a general social theory, particularly into an overarching economic approach to social action and society. Also discussed are some theoretical implications of the rational choice generalization of neoclassical economics. The main contribution of the article is to detect lack of a strong theoretical rationale in much of neoclassical economics for rational choice theory's manifest or latent economic imperialism. (shrink)
The recent surge of interest in the origin of the temporal asymmetry of thermodynamical systems (including the accessible part of the universe itself) has put forward two possible explanatory approaches to this age-old problem. Hereby we show that there is a third possible alternative, based on the generalization of the classical (“Boltzmann–Schuetz”) anthropic fluctuation picture of the origin of the perceived entropy gradient. This alternative (which we dub the Acausal-Anthropic approach) is based on accepting Boltzmann's statistical measure at its face (...) value, and accomodating it within the quantum cosmological concept of the multiverse. We argue that conventional objections raised against the Boltzmann–Schuetz view are less forceful and serious than it is usually assumed. A fortiori, they are incapable of rendering the generalized theory untenable. On the contrary, this analysis highlights some of the other advantages of the multiverse approach to the thermodynamical arrow of time. (shrink)
This text is the first part of a larger study about Alexander Radishchev, one of the leading representatives of Enlightenment in Russia's XVIII Century. Analyzing Voltaire's and Diderot's relationship with Catherine II, the Empress of Russia, in the Introduction of this article, the author formulates the reasons for thematization of Russian reception of Enlightenment. Since Radishchev is considered as 'the father of Russian intelligentsia', different approaches to the meaning of the concept of 'Russian intelligentsia' are considered in the first chapter. (...) Radishchev's biography is interpreted in the second chapter in order to facilitate the understanding of his ideas. Interpretation of his ideas, as well as of Catherina's 'enlightened absolutism', will be subject to further consideration in the second part of the study. Tekst je prvi deo obimnije studije u kojoj je analizirano delo Aleksandra Radisceva, vodeceg predstavnika Prosvetiteljstva u Rusiji XVIII veka. Polazeci od odnosa Voltera i Didroa prema ruskoj imperatorki Katarini Velikoj, autor u uvodnom delu rada formulise razloge za bavljenje ruskom recepcijom Prosvetiteljstva. U prvom poglavlju interpretirane su razlicita tumacenja fenomena 'ruske inteligencije' jer se Radiscev smatra njenim rodonacelnikom. U drugom delu izlozena je biografija Radisceva koja olaksava razmatranje njegovih ideja. Analiza tih ideja, kao i 'prosvecenog apsolutizma' Katarine II, bice predmet razmatranja u nastavku ovog rada. (shrink)
This paper interprets and analyzes the debate having taken place in 1995 between E. Gellner and A. Smith concerning the problem of the emergence of nations. This discussion is used as an example to show the basic general features of two approaches in theories of nationalism - the modernist and the ethno symbolic ones. Pointing to the common assumptions shared by Gellner's and Smith's theories of nations, the author interprets ethno-symbolism as a sort of internal self-criticism of the modernist standpoint. (...) This polemic is therefore interpreted not as a debate between "creationist" and "evolutionist" solutions to the problem of the emergence of nations, but rather as a debate between two theoretical paradigms defining different research priorities in studying nations and nationalisms. From this perspective, the author concludes that the ethno symbolic approach to the genealogy of nations has broader heuristic capacities than the modernist paradigm, at least when the emergence of "peripheral nations" and the understanding of the dynamic of their nationalisms are concerned. U radu je interpretiran i analiziran spor koji su vodili E. Gelner i A. Smit 1995. godine o problemu nastanka nacija. Na primenu ove diskusije prikazane su osnovne opste karakteristike dva pristupa u teorijama nacionalizma modernistickog i etnosimbolickog. Ukazujuci na zajednicke pretpostavke Gelnerove i Smitove teorije nacija, autor je etnosimbolizam tumacio kao jednu vrstu unutrasnje samokritike modernistickog stanovista. Na taj nacin, ova polemika nije interpretirana kao spor izmedju "kreacionistickog" i "evolucionistickog" resenja problema nastanka nacija, vec prevashodno kao spor dve teorijske paradigme koje razlicito odredjuju istrazivacke prioritete u tematizaciji nacija i nacionalizama. Sa tog stanovista, autor je zakljucio da etnosimbolicki pristup genealogiji nacija ima vece heuristicke kapacitete od modernisticke paradigme, bar kada je u pitanju problem nastanka "perifernih nacija " i razumevanja dinamike njihovih nacionalizama. (shrink)
A modern assessment of the classical Boltzmann-Schuetz argument for large-scale entropy fluctuations as the origin of our observable cosmological domain is given.The emphasis is put on the central implication of this picture which flatly contradicts the weak anthropic principle as an epistemological statement about the universe. Therefore, to associate this picture with the anthropic principle as it is usually done is unwarranted. In particular, Feynman's criticism of theanthropic principle based on the entropy-fluctuation picture is a product of this semantic confusion.
This article explores the historical and sociological relations between contemporary conservatism and medievalism. It first registers the reemergence and increasing prominence of conservatism in contemporary society, most notably in America during the late 20th and the early 21st centuries. It then places conservatism and medievalism and their relationship within a historical-comparative framework. The article concludes that modern conservatism originates in and continues, with some adaptations or innovations, medievalism seen as the ‘golden past’, becoming the original and persisting conservative ideal and (...) model of society and history. (shrink)
In the first part of this essay, the author discusses certain aspects of the Hindu and Buddhist philosophical and religious conceptions that could have made some impact on the European ethics before Schopenhauer. In the second part, he deals with various channels of possible Buddhist influence on Schopenhauer's ethical thought. Finally, in discussing Buddhist-Wittgenstein relationship, one is confronted with convergent, yet independent, responses to similar sets of problems. Independently, and less systematically than Buddhist philosophical schools, Wittgenstein indicates the way of (...) liberation that cures from the "metaphysical pain " emerging from inappropriate use of language. His own project, however, was not metaphysical, but meta-linguistic in a very specific sense. The philosophical "cure" from the language disease leads ultimately to the "purification " and "decontamination " of thought: in turn, the mind rests in peace and silence before the senseless, paradoxical questions of the moral, esthetical religious or metaphysical character. Ovaj esej se sastoji iz tri dela. U prvom delu autor razmatra izvesne aspekte hinduistickih i budistickih filozofskih i religijskih doktrina koje su mogle imati uticaja na evropsku etiku do Sopenhauera. Na primer, Pironov metod uzdrzavanja od suda ispoljava zapanjujucu slicnost s izvornim budistickim metodom meditacije. U evropskoj filozofiji slican metod je razvijen u Huserlovoj fenomenologiji, iako na jedan puno slozeniji teorijski nacin. Razmatranje postklasicnih, helenistickih moralnih doktrina vodi od problema izvora do nekih specificnih pitanja komparativne ili hermeneuticke prirode. Pa ipak, u povesti zapadne filozofije nije se jasno ukazalo na dug budistickoj etici sve dok Sopenhauer nije napisao Svet kao volja i predstava. U drugom delu rada autor se stoga bavi razlicitim tokovima moguceg budistickog uticaja na Sopenhauerovu eticku misao. Vrlo cesto Sopenhauerovi kljucni argumenti su pozajmljeni iz indijskih soterioloskih ucenja. S druge strane, on je u stanju da prilagodi ta orijentalna ucenja svojim vlastitim pojmovima i idejama. Izmedju njegove filozofije i indijskih filozofija moguce je uspostaviti odnos konvergentnosti. Iz toga je proizislo jedinstveno stapanje dveju perspektiva koje se ponekad oznacava i kao "evropski budizam". Za razliku od Sopenhauera Vitgenstajn ne upucuje ni na kakvo delo, ili odlomak iz hinduisticke ili budisticke literature. Stavise, tesko je braniti stav da je Sopenhauer imao ikakvu znacajniju posrednicku ulogu u budjenju Vitgenstajnovog interesovanja za budizam. Mnogo je, u stvari, lakse ukazati na vaznost Sopenhauerovog uticaja na "etickog" Vitgenstajna iz Tractatusa, nego utvrditi ikakvu slicnost izmedju sopenhauerovsko-budisticke i Vitgenstajnove eticke koncepcije. Raspravljajuci o odnosu izmedju Vitgenstajna i budizma, susrecemo se s konvergentnim, ali nezavisnim odgovorima na slicne vrste problema. Nezavisno, i manje sistematicno od budistickih filozofskih skola, Vitgenstajn ukazuje na put oslobodjenja sto leci od "metafizicke boli" zasnovane na nepravilnoj upotrebi jezika. Medjutim, njegov vlastiti projekat nije bio metafizicki, vec metalingvisticki u jednom vrlo specificnom smislu. Filozofsko "izlecenje" od bolesti jezika vodi, u krajnjoj liniji, do "ociscenja" i "dekontaminacije" misli. Kao rezultat toga, um nalazi spokoj i mir pred besmislenim, paradoksalnim pitanjima moralnog, estetickog religijskog ili metafizickog karaktera. (shrink)
This article examines the implications of Richard Steigmann-Gall's recent revisionist representation of Nazism as a Christian movement for the increasingly fashionable accounts of Nazism as a secular or political religion. Contrary to Steigmann-Gall's contention that Protestant Nazism undermines these accounts, I suggest that his portrayal of Nazism as a variant of Protestant millennialism is not necessarily inconsistent with the secular religion approach. A closer look at the so-called Löwith-Blumenberg debate on secularization indeed reveals that modern utopianisms containing elements of Protestant (...) millennialism are the best candidates for the label of secularized eschatology. That Steigmann-Gall has reached exactly the opposite conclusion is primarily because his conceptual understanding of secular religion is uninformed by the secularization debate. Insofar as Steigmann-Gall extracts his model of secular religion from contemporary political religion historiography on Nazism, this article points to a larger problem: a disjunction between historians utilizing the concept, on the one hand, and philosophers and social theorists who have shaped it, on the other. (shrink)
The intriguing recent suggestion of Tegmark that the universe—contrary to all our experiences and expectations—contains only a small amount of information due to an extremely high degree of internal symmetry is critically examined. It is shown that there are several physical processes, notably Hawking evaporation of black holes and non-zero decoherence time effects described by Plaga, as well as thought experiments of Deutsch and Tegmark himself, which can be construed as arguments against the low-information universe hypothesis. Some ramifications for both (...) quantum mechanics and cosmology are briefly discussed. (shrink)
This article reexamines the rational choice or economic approach to human studies. Its adherents claim that its extension beyond its original domain to all human behavior can finally lead to integration of the human studies, especially social theory, and thus their elevation from what they see as a chaotic state. Specifically, they propose grounding human studies on the premise that humans are rational egoists or self-interested utility maximizers. Although this premise has been the conceptual foundation of orthodox economic theory, it (...) has been questioned, and even in part discredited in its heterodox versions. This reexamination casts serious doubts on such claims. (shrink)
We investigate intuitionistic propositional modal logics in which a modal operator is equivalent to intuitionistic double negation. Whereas ¬¬ is divisible into two negations, is a single indivisible operator. We shall ﬁrst consider an axiomatization of the Heyting propositional calculus H, with the connectives →,∧,∨ and ¬, extended with . This system will be called Hdn . Next, we shall consider an axiomatization of the fragment of H without ¬ extended with . This system will be called Hdn + . (...) We shall show that these systems are sound and complete with respect to speciﬁc classes of Kripke-style models with two accessibility relations, one intuitionistic and the other modal. This type of models is investigated in  and , and here we try to apply the techniques of these papers to an intuitionistic modal operator with a natural interpretation. The full results of our investigation will be published in  and . (shrink)
The aim of the paper is to explore some of themain reasons for the slow pace of legal andpolitical institutional reform in Serbia andYugoslavia following the change of politicalregime on October 5, 2000. The analysis iscarried out in two ways. First, aninvestigation of the semiotic/narrative ordiscursive constructions offered formally orinformally by the new government is conducted.Second, an analysis of the institutionalstructure of the new political system isundertaken. One result of the analysis is ademonstration that the new system is profoundlystructurally analogous (...) to the prior communistregime. The execution of the original promisesof reform is fettered by theextra-institutional position DOS occupies asthe key agent of all political and economicchanges. Hence, the prospects are grim. This isfurther argued through the semiotic analysis(semantics, syntax and pragmatics) of the DOS'discourse and its constant deployment of wordssuch as ``democracy'', ``freedom'', and ``reform''with messianic political zeal. The articleconcludes that in order for any serious reformto take place the process of institutionalizingpolitical power must be completed first.However, this is unlikely to happen for itwould require a self-elimination of DOS as thesupreme ruler operating over and above theparliament. (shrink)
In a recent paper in this journal, Ken Olum attempts to refute the Doomsday argument by appealing to the self-indication assumption, the idea that your very existence gives you reason to think that there are many observers. In contrast to earlier refutation attempts that use this strategy, Olum confronts and try to counter some of the objections that have been made against SIA. We argue that his defense of SIA is unsuccessful. This does not, however, mean that one has to (...) accept the Doomsday argument. A developed theory of observation selection effects shows why the Doomsday argument is inconclusive and how one can consistently reject both it and SIA. (shrink)
We outline an argument favoring voluntary moral bioenhancement as a response to existential risks humanity exposes itself to. We consider this type of enhancement a solution to the antithesis between the extinction of humanity and the imperative of humanity to survive at any cost. By opting for voluntary moral bioenhancement; we refrain from advocating illiberal or even totalitarian strategies that would allegedly help humanity preserve itself. We argue that such strategies; by encroaching upon the freedom of individuals; already inflict a (...) degree of existential harm on human beings. We also give some pointers as to the desirable direction for morally enhanced post-personhood. (shrink)
Synaesthesia is a condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces photisms, i.e. mental percepts of colours. R is a 20 year old colour blind subject who, in addition to the relatively common grapheme-colour synaesthesia, presents a rarely reported cross modal perception in which a variety of visual stimuli elicit aura-like percepts of colour. In R, photisms seem to be closely related to the affective valence of stimuli and (...) typically bring out a consistent pattern of emotional responses. The present case study suggests that colours might be an intrinsic category of the human brain. We developed an empirical methodology that allowed us to study the subject's otherwise inaccessible phenomenological experience. First, we found that R shows a Stroop effect elicited by photisms despite the fact that he does not show a regular Stroop with real colours. Secondly, by manipulating the colour context we confirmed that colours can alter R's emotional evaluation of the stimuli. Furthermore, we demonstrated that R's auras may actually lead to a partially inverted emotional spectrum where certain stimuli bring out emotional reactions opposite to the normal ones. These findings can only be accounted for by considering R's subjective colour experience or qualia. Therefore the present paper defends the view that qualia are a useful scientific concept that can be approached and studied by experimental methods. (shrink)
Karen von Kunes traces Milan Kundera’s creative ideas to a 1950 police report filed in Stalinist era Czechoslovakia. Demonstrating how this incident influenced Kundera’s literary trajectory and ultimately contributed to his acclaim as a writer, von Kunes interprets his work in a new way.
Milan Kundera and Franz Kafka - How Not to Forget Everydayness Purpose of the article is to show that while in fundamental constitutional questions we are still attentive to our past, in everyday legal cases we can forget more likely. In my opinion, in case of the post-communist countries it is very dangerous to forget the Past because we have nothing other than our memories. To forget means either to be exposited the danger of return to the system as (...) it was or to transform our legal praxis into a depersonalized system.Methodology/methods In this article I want to analyze two decisions of Constitutional Court of the Czech Republic and compare them with situation described in early works of Milan Kundera. His work reflecting the past everydayness in communist Czechoslovakia can be used as a good example of the analyses of forgetting. Very similar inspirations we can find in work of Franz Kafka or even better in Milan Kundera's interpretation of Kafka's work. The scientific aim of this article is to show that although the literature represents different conception of knowledge when this knowledge is compared with legal knowledge we can gain parallels that describe the law rooted in culture and society.Conclusions of this article show that on one side we face reminding of our Past in decisions regarding politically considerable cases. On the other side we face the oblivion: In cases at constitutional level dealing with everydayness in legal praxis we can find rather shift to formal interpretation without any reference to our past. The result can be Kafkaesque legal system without any signs of living people. (shrink)
Milan, David While esteemed Christian apologist C.S. Lewis ruefully puzzled over The Problem of Pain, the theologians invented their own word - 'theodicy' - to describe the futile attempts (to date) to resolve monotheism's conundrum - that of an omnipotent, all-loving deity magisterially presiding over a world in which widespread evil is so pervasive. And what a mind bender this is!
Milan, David An atheist and his christian friend are engaged in cordial conversation. The latter is taken aback and is rather indignant when his atheist friend declaims, 'On this question of the existence of god I believe that our respective positions are much closer than you imagine'. The Christian's firm riposte is that, by definition, such a harmony of viewpoints is impossible. Unfazed, his non-believing friend offers a thoughtful defence of his claim. He begins, 'You know that, since time (...) immemorial, humankind has taken unto itself all manner of gods, and that almost all of these tribal deities have long since vanished into obscurity.'. (shrink)
In a recent paper in this journal, Ken Olum attempts to refute the doomsday argument by appealing to the self–indication assumption (SIA) that your very existence gives you reason to think that there are many observers. Unlike earlier users of this strategy, Olum tries to counter objections that have been made against (SIA). We argue that his defence of (SIA) is unsuccessful. This does not, however, mean that one has to accept the doomsday argument (or the other counter–intuitive results that (...) flow from related thought–experiments). A developed theory of observation selection effects shows why the doomsday argument is inconclusive, and how one can consistently reject both it and (SIA). (shrink)
Synaesthesia is a condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces photisms, i.e. mental percepts of colours. R is a 20 year old colour blind subject who, in addition to the relatively common grapheme-colour synaesthesia, presents a rarely reported cross modal perception in which a variety of visual stimuli elicit aura-like percepts of colour. In R, photisms seem to be closely related to the affective valence of stimuli and (...) typically bring out a consistent pattern of emotional responses. The present case study suggests that colours might be an intrinsic category of the human brain. We developed an empirical methodology that allowed us to study the subject's otherwise inaccessible phenomenological experience. First, we found that R shows a Stroop effect (delayed response due to interference) elicited by photisms despite the fact that he does not show a regular Stroop with real colours. Secondly, by manipulating the colour context we confirmed that colours can alter R's emotional evaluation of the stimuli. Furthermore, we demonstrated that R's auras may actually lead to a partially inverted emotional spectrum where certain stimuli bring out emotional reactions opposite to the normal ones. These findings can only be accounted for by considering R's subjective colour experience or qualia. Therefore the present paper defends the view that qualia are a useful scientific concept that can be approached and studied by experimental methods. (shrink)
Here is a philosophical examination of some themes presented by Milan Kundera in The Art of the Novel, as well as in his novels Immortality and The Unbearable Lightness of Being. The discussions of the first-personal perspectives of the novel’s author, both as appearing in and as contrasted with that of a character in the novel, as these unfold in implicit subtle comic, social-political contexts, prescind from these contexts and dwell instead on fictional renditions of the senses of personhood (...) and its individuality especially as embodied in the face and as implied in relations of love. Of special interest is Kundera’s thesis that the irreplaceable uniqueness of the individual is one of Europe’s finest illusions. (shrink)
The Bell inequalities of the metric form are introduced. The quantum-mechanical correlations of the particles with s=1/2 and photons are described using the relative measure of probability on the concave surfaces. The relation of the proposed scheme with the Bayes theorem about conditional information entropy and J. von Neumann's postulates is discussed.