This paper discusses recent neuroscientific research that indicates a solution for what we label the ''causal problem'' of pain qualia, the problem of how the brain generates pain qualia. In particular, the data suggest that pain qualia naturally supervene on activity in a specific brain region: the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC). The first section of this paper discusses several philosophical concerns regarding the nature of pain qualia. The second section overviews the current state of knowledge regarding the neuroanatomy and physiology (...) of pain processing. The third section highlights the recent research by Rainville et al. [(1997) Pain affect encoded in human anterior cingulate but not somatosensory cortex, Science, 277, 968-971], which suggests that pain affect is encoded in the ACC. The final section of the paper spells out exactly how these data affect the causal problem of pain qualia. (shrink)
It has been 35 years since the publicationMelzack and Wall's Gate Control Theory whichhypothesized that nociceptive information wassubject to dynamic regulation by mechanismslocated in the spinal cord dorsal horn thatcould ultimately lead to hyperalgesic orhypoalgesic states. This paper examines GateControl Theory in light of our currentunderstanding of the neuroanatomical,neurophysiological and neurochemical substratesof nociception and antinociception. Despiteits initial controversies, no one has proposeda more comprehensive overall theory of painmodulation or has successfully refuted most ofthe basic tenets of this theory.
A widely accepted theory holds that emotional experiences occur mainly in a part of the human brain called the amygdala. A different theory asserts that color sensation is located in a small subpart of the visual cortex called V4. If these theories are correct, or even approximately correct, then they are remarkable advances toward a scientific explanation of human conscious experience. Yet even understanding the claims of such theories—much less evaluating them—raises some puzzles. Conscious experience does not present itself as (...) a brain process. Indeed experience seems entirely unlike neural activity. For example, to some people it seems that an exact physical duplicate of you could have different sensations than you do, or could have no sensations at all. If so, then how is it even possible that sensations could turn out to be brain processes? (shrink)
Pains that persist long after damaged tissue hasrecovered remain a perplexing phenomenon. Theseso-called chronic pains serve no useful function foran organism and, given its disabling effects, mighteven be considered maladaptive. However, a remarkablesimilarity exists between the neural bases thatunderlie the hallmark symptoms of chronic pain andthose that subserve learning and memory. Bothphenomena, wind-up in the pain literature andlong-term potentiation (LTP) in the learning andmemory literature, are forms of neuroplasticity inwhich increased neural activity leads to a longlasting increase in the excitability (...) of neuronsthrough structural modifications at pre- andpost-synaptic sites. Moreover, the synapticmodifications of wind-up and LTP share a commonmechanism: a glutamate N -methyl-D-aspartate(NMDA) receptor interaction that initiates a calciummediated biochemical cascade that ultimately enhancessignal processing at the -amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazoleproprionic acid (AMPA) receptor. This paper arguesthat chronic pain, which has no adaptive value, canbe accounted for in terms of the highly adaptivephenomenon of activity-dependent neural plasticity;hence, some cases of chronic pain can beconceptualized as a memory trace in spinal neurons. (shrink)
This paper offers an evolutionary account of chronic pain. Chronic pain is a maladaptive by-product of pain mechanisms and neural plasticity, both of which are highly adaptive. This account shows how evolutionary psychology can be integrated with Flanagan's natural method, and in a way that avoids the usual charges of panglossian adaptationism and an uncritical commitment to a modular picture of the mind. Evolutionary psychology is most promising when it adopts a bottom-up research strategy that focuses on basic affective and (...) motivational systems (as opposed to higher cognitive functions) that are phylogenetically deep. (shrink)
This study examines cheating behaviors among 742 marketing and management majors at three public AACSB-accredited business schools. Specifically, we studied the simultaneous influence of demographic and attitudinal characteristics on: (1) reported prior cheating behavior; (2) the tendency to neutralize cheating behaviors; and, (3) likelihood of future cheating. We additionally examined the impact of in-class deterrents on neutralization of cheating behaviors and the likelihood of future cheating. We also directly tested potential mediating effects of neutralization on cheating behavior.We conducted independent assessments (...) of the validity of the Smith et al. (2002) model of cheating behavior and its antecedents using structural equations modeling procedures. Results supported the differentiation of the theoretical constructs within the specified process model. Furthermore, tests of the aforementioned theoretical model indicated that the primary influences on future cheating were prior cheating, and the degree to which one neutralized prior cheating behaviors. Equally noteworthy, in contrast to previous research we found in-class deterrents to have no significant influence in either neutralizing behavior or future cheating proclivities. (shrink)
After decades of acrimonious debate on the nature of scientific knowledge, researchers in the human or social sciences are reaching a state of relative equanimity, a condition that may be characterized as a reflective pragmatism. Yet, even while the context has favored the development of new forms of research, the longstanding ocular metaphor of inquiry remains pervasive. That is, researchers continue the practice of observing what is the case, with the intent to illuminate, understand, report on, or furnish insight into (...) given states of affairs. And, while selectively useful, such an orientation is not only limited in potential but subject to a receding span of application. As I will propose, when the logics of reflective pragmatism are fully extended, we enter a new territory of understanding, one in which the vision of research is radically altered. We replace the captivating gaze on the world as it is with value based explorations into what it could be. This conception of a future forming orientation to research opens the way to new aims, practices, and reflections. (shrink)
Abstract. Given that the conception of the person as an autonomous agent is a cultural construction, inquiry is directed to its potentials and shortcomings for cultural life. While such a conception contributes to sustaining the moral order, it also supports an individualist ideology and social divisiveness. As an alternative to the conception of moral autonomy, I explore the potentials of relational being, an orientation that views relational process (as opposed to individual agents) as the wellspring of all meaning. Such an (...) orientation sees all moral concepts and action as issuing from coordinated action. However, at the same time that relational process generates moral orders, so does it establish the grounds for “immorality” and social conflict, which undermines the relational process of creating moral order. Thus, a concept of “second-order morality” is advanced, which seeks to reestablish a more inclusive first-order morality. Responsibility for productive processes of relationship is invited. Recent innovations in dialogic practices lend themselves to relational responsibility. (shrink)
This paper 1) argues that libertarians are virtually as badly off as compatibilists in the face of the objection to the Free Will Defence that omnipotent God could have ensured that all free beings always but freely did right, and 2) explores the prospects for an "upgraded" Free Will Defense which takes freedom merely as a necessary condition for a further higher good which logically could not be achieved if God employed any of the available strategies--under both compatibilist and libertarian (...) assumptions--for creating morally free beings without the risk of moral evil. (shrink)
Hume said that to have a memory image of some individual, x, is to perceive a ‘faint copy’ of some prior perception of x. This classical view of memory images includes three distinct claims: Images and percepts are mental entities which serve as objects for a ‘direct’ or ‘non-inferential’ perception. A memory image of some individual, x, shares numerous properties with some prior perception of x.
Recent research questions the validity of student evaluation of teaching (SET) data to measure teaching and learning. Yet, there is extensive use of this instrument around the world, which arguably contributes to a decline in the rigor of college classes. This performance measurement has lead to both unethical grade inflation and coursework deflation as faculty try to entertain students rather than educating them. These unethical teaching techniques used by many faculties are on the same plane as the unethical practices of (...) executives “cooking their books.” Ethical and unethical SET management techniques of professors are discussed herein, along with incentive and structural pander pollution of administrators and universities. (shrink)
The author comments on the work of G. G. Gallup and S. D. Suarez, specifically focusing on animal rights issues. Gallup and Suarez argue for the status quo in research practices involving nonhuman animals; while K. J. Shapiro and others take a reformist position that the suffering of and the reliance on animals in psychology laboratories can and ought to be diminished. 2012 APA, all rights reserved).
In this article, the author welcomes the inclusion of the brief exchange on animal rights in Division 24's inaugural "bulletin" issue for the question of psychology's treatment of animals raises many philosophical and theoretical questions. However, even in the informal format of letters and comments, it is unfortunately remiss to omit not only reference to but discussion of the arguments in the primary source for the current debate —while including three references to one's own work. The author then continues to (...) discuss Rowan's description of Gallup's position as a textbook example of ethical relativism, a position currently given little credence for obvious historical reasons. 2012 APA, all rights reserved). (shrink)
This book is written for the non-philosophy major taking 'Contemporary Moral Issues' or 'Intro to Ethics' courses. It provides a method to research any complex moral issue in hundreds of print, periodical, and Internet research sources, and gives a model of the method applied to the question of capital punishment.