The history of drug/vaccine development has included major advances guided primarily by risk/benefit analyses concerning the innovative agent, not by evidence-based clinical trials (Phase I–IV). Because the approval for new drugs is hindered under the present process, the system requires restructuring. The Phase I/II study period should be more flexible, using the “environment of knowledge” about the new agent, plus risk/benefit assessments. Phase III, as presently constructed, does not add new adverse events data, it provides a narrower profile of drug (...) efficacy than properly done Phase II studies, and placebo-controlled trials continue to raise unresolved ethical and social issues. Phase III studies should be abandoned for most drugs, and substituted with properly powered Phase II doseranging studies plus careful post-marketing surveillance. Phase III should be a penalty for poor drug development, not a regulatory requirement. (shrink)
There is a rich literature about the temporal conjunctions before/after, but at the time I gave the talk that underlies this paper I was not aware of any analysis of the temporal comparatives früher/später ‘earlier/later’, which may be used to express similar states of affairs, but are constructed differently.2 Recently I got acquainted with the del Prete’s thesis about It. prima/dopo, which analyses prima as a comparative and dopo as a preposition.3 This is the only paper known to me that (...) goes into the same direction as the following proposal. Del Prete’s analysis is very different from mine and I must leave the discussion of his theory to another occasion. The semantics of before/after is notoriously controversial and the semantics of the related adjectives is therefore interesting in itself. A study of the adjectives gains additional interest from the fact that they are entirely differently constructed: they are degree adjectives and have a comparative, an equative and a positive variant. I will study each of them. (shrink)
ABSTRACTRelatively little has been written about the ethics of conducting early phase clinical trials involving subjects from the developing world. Below, I analyze ethical issues surrounding one of gene transfer’s most widely praised studies conducted to date: in this study, Italian investigators recruited two subjects from the developing world who were ineligible for standard of care because of economic considerations. Though the study seems to have rendered a cure in these two subjects, it does not appear to have complied with (...) various international guidelines that require that clinical trials conducted in the developing world be responsive to their populations’ health needs. Nevertheless, policies devised to address large scale, late stage trials, such as the AZT short‐course placebo trials, map somewhat awkwardly to early phase studies. I argue that interest in conducting translational research in the developing world, particularly in the context of hemophilia trials, should motivate more rigorous ethical thinking around clinical trials involving economically disadvantaged populations. (shrink)
As opposed to the dismissive attitude toward reductionism that is popular in current philosophy of mind, a “ruthless reductionism” is alive and thriving in “molecular and cellular cognition”—a field of research within cellular and molecular neuroscience, the current mainstream of the discipline. Basic experimental practices and emerging results from this field imply that two common assertions by philosophers and cognitive scientists are false: (1) that we do not know much about how the brain works, and (2) that lower-level neuroscience cannot (...) explain cognition and complex behavior directly. These experimental practices involve intervening directly with molecular components of sub-cellular and gene expression pathways in neurons and then measuring specific behaviors. These behaviors are tracked using tests that are widely accepted by experimental psychologists to study the psychological phenomenon at issue (e.g., memory, attention, and perception). Here I illustrate these practices and their importance for explanation and reduction in current mainstream neuroscience by describing recent work on social recognition memory in mammals. (shrink)
Since the discovery that the characteristics of dreaming sleep are far stronger in Stage 1 rapid eye movement sleep than in any other biological state, investigators have attempted to determine the relative responsibility of the tonic versus the phasic properties of REM sleep for the different characteristics of dreaming–features such as the amount of information in the dream report, the brightness and clarity of the visual images, shifts in thematic continuity, and incongruities of image and meaning. The present experiment is (...) designed to identify dream characteristics that are specifically associated with tonic changes in level of cortical activation within sleep. It samples reports of imagery and thought during spontaneous variations within one phase of the 24-h diurnal rhythm and across the REM-NREM sleep cycle in order to identify the independent and joint contributions of the two cycles to imagery and thought. The rising phase of the diurnal cycle in the late night and morning was estimated from clock time during the late night and early morning and was varied by delaying the sleep onset and waking time of the subjects. Considered together with other studies, the results suggest that the major determinant of vivid visual imagery and enhanced cognitive activity during sleep is a pattern of subcortical and cortical activation that is common to both the REM phase of the REM-NREM cycle and the activated phase of the 24-h diurnal wake-sleep cycle. (shrink)
Porphyry, a native of Phoenicia educated in Athens and Rome during the third century AD, was one of the most important Platonic philosophers of his age. In this book, Professor Johnson rejects the prevailing modern approach to his thought, which has posited an early stage dominated by 'Oriental' superstition and irrationality followed by a second rationalizing or Hellenizing phase consequent upon his move west and exposure to Neoplatonism. Based on a careful treatment of all the relevant remains of Porphyry's originally (...) vast corpus, he argues for a complex unity of thought in terms of philosophical translation. The book explores this philosopher's critical engagement with the processes of Hellenism in late antiquity. It provides the first comprehensive examination of all the strands of Porphyry's thought that lie at the intersection of religion, theology, ethnicity and culture. (shrink)
We present a mini review of the Stueckelberg mechanism, which was proposed to make the abelian gauge theories massive as an alternative to Higgs mechanism, within the framework of Minkowski as well as curved spacetimes. The higher the scale the tighter the bounds on the photon mass, which might be gained via the Stueckelberg mechanism, may be signalling that even an extremely small mass of the photon which cannot be measured directly could have far reaching effects in cosmology. We present (...) a cosmological model where Stueckelberg fields, which consist of both scalar and vector fields, are non-minimally coupled to gravity and the universe could go through a decelerating expansion phase sandwiched by two different accelerated expansion phases. We discuss also the possible anisotropic extensions of the model. (shrink)
Historians looking to make history a professional discipline of study in Victorian Britain believed they had to establish firm boundaries demarcating history from other literary disciplines. James Anthony Froude ignored such boundaries. The popularity of his historical narratives was a constant reminder of the continued existence of a supposedly overturned phase of historiography in which the historian was also a man of letters, transcending the boundary separating fact from fiction and literature from history. Just as professionalizing historians were constructing a (...) methodology that called on historians to be inductive empirical workers, Froude refused to accept the new science of history, and suggested instead that history was an individual enterprise, one more concerned with drama and art than with science. E. A. Freeman warned the historical community that they “cannot welcome [Froude] as a partner in their labors, as a fellow-worker in the cause of historic truth.”This article examines the boundary work of a professionalizing history by considering the attempt to exclude Froude from the historian’s discourse, an attempt that involved a communal campaign that sought to represent Froude as “constitutionally inaccurate.” Froude suffered from “an inborn and incurable twist,” argued Freeman, thereby diagnosing “Froude’s disease” as the inability to “make an accurate statement about any matter.” By unpacking the construction of “Froude’s disease,” the article exposes the disciplinary techniques at work in the professionalization of history, techniques that sought to exclude non-scientific modes of thought such as that offered by Froude. (shrink)
The program put forward in von Wright's last works defines deontic logic as ``a study of conditions which must be satisfied in rational norm-giving activity'' and thus introduces the perspective of logical pragmatics. In this paper a formal explication for von Wright's program is proposed within the framework of set-theoretic approach and extended to a two-sets model which allows for the separate treatment of obligation-norms and permission norms. The three translation functions connecting the language of deontic logic with the language (...) of the extended set-theoretical approach are introduced, and used in proving the correspondence between the deontic theorems, on one side, and the perfection properties of the norm-set and the ``counter-set'', on the other side. In this way the possibility of reinterpretation of standard deontic logic as the theory of perfection properties that ought to be achieved in norm-giving activity has been formally proved. The extended set-theoretic approach is applied to the problem of rationality of principles of completion of normative systems. The paper concludes with a plaidoyer for logical pragmatics turn envisaged in the late phase of Von Wright's work in deontic logic. (shrink)
Question: Where, when and under what circumstances did the two of you get to know each other?Fischer: It was in the early seventies, in Frankfurt, after the dissolution of the gauche proletarienne and while there were still leftist groups in Germany. It must have been 1972. Question: Was that a private visit?Glucksmann: We had private discussions. We also participated in rallies and demonstrations.Question: That was in the late phase of the student movement.Fischer: We kept in contact through my old room-mate, (...) Daniel Cohn-Bendit. He was our link to France, so to speak.Question: And was this the link between the French and the German Left that existed then? (shrink)
The programme of physicians and surgeons during the ‘late’ phase of the Paris Hospital incorporated efforts to codify the most efficient ways of defining disease. Those efforts involved reckoning the probability, the specificity, and most consistently, the localization of disease entities. One of the most frequently encountered of such entities was pleuritis. Pleuritis is therefore used here as a ‘marker’ through which to investigate how Auguste Chomel and others carried forward the programme of codification. A conspicuous feature of that programme (...) was a highly ritualized system of pedagogical organization in the clinique médicale. (shrink)
Transplantation continues to push the frontiers of medicine into domains that summon forth troublesome ethical questions. Looming on the frontier today is human facial transplantation. We develop criteria that, we maintain, must be satisfied in order to ethically undertake this as-yet-untried transplant procedure. We draw on the criteria advanced by Dr. Francis Moore in the late 1980s for introducing innovative procedures in transplant surgery. In addition to these we also insist that human face transplantation must meet all the ethical requirements (...) usually applied to health care research. We summarize the achievements of transplant surgery to date, focusing in particular on the safety and efficacy of immunosuppressive medications. We also emphasize the importance of risk/benefit assessments that take into account the physical, aesthetic, psychological, and social dimensions of facial disfiguration, reconstruction, and transplantation. Finally, we maintain that the time has come to move facial transplantation research into the clinical phase. (shrink)
“René Girard’s thoughts on the connection between religion and violence are just now becoming known in Germany,” wrote the philosopher Eckhard Nordhofen at the beginning of 1995 in the influential German weekly Die Zeit.1 Was Nordhofen correct with this assessment back then, or was he rather mistaken? Had not a first phase of reception of Girard’s works in the German-speaking world already begun in the late 1970s, or at the latest by the mid 1980s? One must note, though, that Girard (...) was never in fashion during the 1970s or 1980s and that these first attempts to incorporate his works into academic discussion came from individual scholars such as the Swiss Jesuit Raymund Schwager; Konrad Thomas, a sociologist based .. (shrink)
Most models of response time (RT) in elementary cognitive tasks implicitly assume that the speed-accuracy trade-off is continuous: When payoffs or instructions gradually increase the level of speed stress, people are assumed to gradually sacrifice response accuracy in exchange for gradual increases in response speed. This trade-off presumably operates over the entire range from accurate but slow responding to fast but chance-level responding (i.e., guessing). In this article, we challenge the assumption of continuity and propose a phase transition model for (...) RTs and accuracy. Analogous to the fast guess model (Ollman, 1966), our model postulates two modes of processing: a guess mode and a stimulus-controlled mode. From catastrophe theory, we derive two important predictions that allow us to test our model against the fast guess model and against the popular class of sequential sampling models. The first prediction—hysteresis in the transitions between guessing and stimulus-controlled behavior—was confirmed in an experiment that gradually changed the reward for speed versus accuracy. The second prediction—bimodal RT distributions—was confirmed in an experiment that required participants to respond in a way that is intermediate between guessing and accurate responding. (shrink)
Metaphor has a double life. It can be described as a directional process in which a stable, familiar base domain provides inferential structure to a less clearly specified target. But metaphor is also described as a process of finding commonalities, an inherently symmetric process. In this second view, both concepts may be altered by the metaphorical comparison. Whereas most theories of metaphor capture one of these aspects, we offer a model based on structure-mapping that captures both sides of metaphor processing. (...) This predicts (a) an initial processing stage of symmetric alignment; and (b) a later directional phase in which inferences are projected to the target. To test these claims, we collected comprehensibility judgments for forward (e.g., “A rumor is a virus”) and reversed (“A virus is a rumor”) metaphors at early and late stages of processing, using a deadline procedure. We found an advantage for the forward direction late in processing, but no directional preference early in processing. Implications for metaphor theory are discussed. (shrink)
Despite their crucial role in the translation of pre-clinical research into new clinical applications, phase 1 trials involving patients continue to prompt ethical debate. At the heart of the controversy is the question of whether risks of administering experimental drugs are therapeutically justified. We suggest that prior attempts to address this question have been muddled, in part because it cannot be answered adequately without first attending to the way labor is divided in managing risk in clinical trials. In what follows, (...) we approach the question of therapeutic justification for phase 1 trials from the viewpoint of five different stakeholders: the drug regulatory authority, the IRB, the clinical investigator, the referring physician, and the patient. Our analysis shows that the question of therapeutic justification actually raises multiple questions corresponding to the roles and responsibilities of the different stakeholders involved. By attending to these contextual differences, we provide more coherent guidance for the ethical negotiation of risk in phase 1 trials involving patients. We close by discussing the implications of our argument for various perennial controversies in phase 1 trial practice. (shrink)
Recent experiments undertaken by Caprez, Barwick, and Batelaan should clarify the connections between classical and quantum theories in connection with the Aharonov–Bohm phase shift. It is pointed out that resistive aspects for the solenoid current carriers play a role in the classical but not the quantum analysis for the phase shift. The observed absence of a classical lag effect for a macroscopic solenoid does not yet rule out the possibility of a lag explanation of the observed phase shift for a (...) microscopic solenoid. (shrink)
The main experiments concerning the Aharonov–Bohm phase shifts, seen in an electron interference pattern, and their Boyer semiclassical explanations are reviewed. A new experiment is also presented which emphasizes the subtleties involved in the interpretations of the magnetic Aharonov–Bohm phase shift as a result of a non-dispersive or dispersive effect.
A (to our knowledge) novel Generalized Nonlinear Schrödinger equation based on the modifications of Nottale-Cresson’s fractal-scale calculus and resulting from the noncommutativity of the phase space coordinates is explicitly derived. The modifications to the ground state energy of a harmonic oscillator yields the observed value of the vacuum energy density. In the concluding remarks we discuss how nonlinear and nonlocal QM wave equations arise naturally from this fractal-scale calculus formalism which may have a key role in the final formulation of (...) Quantum Gravity. (shrink)
BackgroundIn this manuscript, we argue that within the context of phase IV, physician-researchers retain their fiduciary obligation to treat the patient-participants.DiscussionWe first clarify why the perspective that research ethics ought to be differentiated from clinical ethics is not applicable in phase IV, and therefore, why therapeutic orientation is most convivial in this phase. Next, assuming that ethics guidelines may be representative of common morality, we show that ethics guidelines see physician-researchers primarily as physicians and only secondarily as researchers. We then (...) elaborate on what a fiduciary obligation is and how some of the obligations are default duties. Lastly, we look at the fiduciary obligation of the physician-researcher in phase IV interventional trials.ConclusionThe fiduciary obligation to treat is not as easily waived as in earlier trials. Assuming the entwinement of research and practice in phase IV, physician-researchers, in collaboration with other researchers, investigators, and research ethics committees, should ensure that in terms of study design, methodology, and research practice, the therapeutic value of the research to the patient-participants is not diminished. (shrink)
Why worry about Wittgenstein’s Tractatus? Did not Wittgenstein himself come to think it was largely a mistaken work? Is not Wittgenstein’s important work his later work? And does not his later work consist in a rejection of his earlier views? So does not the interest of the Tractatus mostly lie in its capacity to furnish a particularly vivid exemplar of the sort of philosophy that the mature Wittgenstein was most concerned to reject? So is it not true that the only (...) real reason to worry about the Tractatus is to become clear about what sort of thing it was that the later Wittgenstein was most against in philosophy? Is the interest of the book therefore not largely exhausted by its capacity to show us what the later Wittgenstein did not think? Much of the secondary literature on Wittgenstein’s Tractatus, either implicitly or explicitly, answers these questions largely in the affirmative. The aim of this paper is to suggest that the manner in which it has done so has done much to obstruct the possibility of an understanding of Wittgenstein’s philosophy – both early and late. The aim is not to suggest that these questions should be answered instead in the negative, but rather to furnish a prolegomenon to the possibility of a proper understanding of what – and how much – ought to be affirmed in answering them in the affirmative. As the present volume makes evident, there is currently a debate underway about how to read (and how not to read) Wittgenstein’s Tractatus. This paper will not attempt a direct contribution to that debate,2 it will attempt instead to bring out some of what might be at stake in that debate. It is natural to think that all that ought to be at stake is a fairly parochial question concerning the proper interpretation of Wittgenstein’s work during a single, relatively early phase of his philosophical development. Thus it is natural to conclude that, whatever differences may divide the parties to this debate concerning how to read the Tractatus, nonetheless, au fond these interpreters of Wittgenstein may be in broad agreement about how to read most of the rest of Wittgenstein’s work – or, at least, whatever their disagreements may be about the early work, they are ones that can be independently adjudicated, without substantial cost to anyone’s prior.... (shrink)
Johann Friedrich Blumenbach is widely known as the father of German vitalism and his notion of Bildungstrieb, or nisus formativus, has been recognized as playing a key role in the debates about generation in German-speaking countries around 1800. On the other hand, Caspar Friedrich Wolff was the first to employ a vitalist notion, namely that of vis essentialis, in the explanatory framework of epigenetic development. Is there a difference between Wolff’s vis essentialis and Blumenbach’s nisus formativus? How does this difference (...) influence their overall understanding of the epigenetic process? The paper aims to provide an answer to these questions through the analysis of a little-known document, which contributes to shed light on a crucial chapter of the German life sciences in the late eighteenth-century, namely the decisive phase of the process that led to the formalization of biology as a unified field of inquiry at the beginning of the nineteenth century. (shrink)
Wansing’s extended intuitionistic linear logic with strong negation, called WILL, is regarded as a resource-conscious refinment of Nelson’s constructive logics with strong negation. In this paper, (1) the completeness theorem with respect to phase semantics is proved for WILL using a method that simultaneously derives the cut-elimination theorem, (2) a simple correspondence between the class of Petri nets with inhibitor arcs and a fragment of WILL is obtained using a Kripke semantics, (3) a cut-free sequent calculus for WILL, called twist (...) calculus, is presented, (4) a strongly normalizable typed λ-calculus is obtained for a fragment of WILL, and (5) new applications of WILL in medical diagnosis and electric circuit theory are proposed. Strong negation in WILL is found to be expressible as a resource-conscious refutability, and is shown to correspond to inhibitor arcs in Petri net theory. (shrink)
This article discusses the conditions under which the use of expert knowledge may provide an adequate response to public concerns about high-tech, late modern risks. Scientific risk estimation has more than once led to expert controversies. When these controversies occur, the public at large – as a media audience – faces a paradoxical situation: on the one hand it must rely on the expertise of scientists as represented in the mass media, but on the other it is confused by competing (...) expert claims in the absence of any clear-cut standard to judge these claims. The question then arises, what expertise can the public trust? I argue that expert controversies cannot be settled by appealing to neutral, impartial expertise, because each use of expert knowledge in applied contexts is inextricably bound up with normative and evaluative assumptions. This value-laden nature of expert contributions, however, does not necessarily force us to adopt a relativist conception of expert knowledge. Nor does it imply active involvement of ordinary citizens in scientific risk estimation – as some authors seem to suggest. The value-laden, or partisan, nature of expert statements rather requires an unbiased process of expert dispute in which experts and counter-experts can participate. Moreover, instead of being a reason for discrediting expert contributions, experts'' commitment may enhance public trustworthiness because it enlarges the scope of perspectives taken into account, to include public concerns. Experts who share the same worries as (some of) the public could be expected to voice these worries at the level of expert dispute. Thus, a broadly shaped expert dispute, that is accessible to both proponents and opponents, is a prerequisite for public trust. (shrink)
In many forms of severe acute brain injury there is an early phase when prognosis is uncertain, followed later by physiological recovery and the possibility of more certain predictions of future impairment. There may be a window of opportunity for withdrawal of life support early, but if decisions are delayed there is the risk that the patient will survive with severe impairment. In this paper I focus on the example of neonatal encephalopathy and the question of the timing of prognostic (...) tests and decisions to continue or to withdraw life-sustaining treatment. Should testing be performed early or later; and how should parents decide what to do given the conflicting values at stake? I apply decision theory to the problem, using sensitivity analysis to assess how different features of the tests or different values would affect a decision to perform early or late prognostic testing. I draw some general conclusions from this model for decisions about the timing of testing in neonatal encephalopathy. Finally I consider possible solutions to the problem posed by the window of opportunity. Decision theory highlights the costs of uncertainty. This may prompt further research into improving prognostic tests. But it may also prompt us to reconsider our current attitudes towards the palliative care of newborn infants predicted to be severely impaired. (shrink)
On the 25th anniversary of Berry’s historic papers on the geometric phase, I discuss here our neutron interferometry experiment in which this phase is clearly separated from the dynamical phase. The connection of this experiment to the observation of the sign reversal of the wave function of a fermion during a 2π precession in a magnetic field by three groups independently in 1975 is discussed.
This study aimed to elucidate the withdrawal behaviors syndrome (lateness, absence, and intent to leave work) among nurses by examining interrelations between these behaviors and the mediating effect of organizational commitment upon ethical perceptions (caring climate, formal climate, and distributive justice) and withdrawal behaviors. Two-hundred and one nurses from one hospital in northern Israel participated. Data collection was based on questionnaires and hospital records using a two-phase design. The analyses are based on Hierarchical Multiple Regressions and on Structural Equation Modeling (...) with AMOS. Affective commitment was found to mediate the relationship between different dimensions of nurses’ ethical perceptions (caring climate, formal climate, and distributive justice) and their intent to leave work. Lateness was found to be positively related to absence frequency which was found negatively related to intent to leave. Males were late more frequently than females, while seniority was related only to absence frequency. The findings indicated that each withdrawal behavior exhibits unique relationships. The results may help policy makers to focus on improving the ethical environment in order to increase nurses’ commitment and reduce their intent to leave. Improving the ethical environment may be achieved through ethical education for nurses which may promote ethical considerations becoming an integral part of nurses’ work. (shrink)
The Genetic Algorithm (GA) and Simulated Annealing (SA), two techniques for global optimization, were applied to a reduced (simplified) form of the phase problem (RPP) in computational crystallography. Results were compared with those of "enhanced pair flipping" (EPF), a more elaborate problem-specific algorithm incorporating local and global searches. Not surprisingly, EPF did better than the GA or SA approaches, but the existence of GA and SA techniques more advanced than those used in this study suggest that these techniques still hold (...) promise for phase problem applications. The RPP is, furthermore, an excellent test problem for such global optimization methods. (shrink)
We show that quantum interference can be interpreted in terms of a phase invariant quantity, not unlike the Berry’s phase. Under this interpretation, closed loops in time become fundamental quantum entities, and all quantum states become periodic. Decoherence is then seen to occur naturally as a consequence. This formalism, although counterintuitive, provides another useful way of assigning meaning to quantum probabilities and quasi-probabilities.
The late Richard Rorty was no stranger to provocation, and many an analytic philosopher would surely count as extremely provocative comments he had made on Robert Brandom’s highly regarded book from 1994, Making It Explicit.1 Brandom’s book was, Rorty asserted “an attempt to usher analytic philosophy from its Kantian to its Hegelian stage.”2 The reception of Kant within analytic philosophy has surely been, at best, patchy, but if it is difficult to imagine exactly what Rorty could have had in mind (...) by analytic philosophy’s “Kantian phase,” the idea of an immanent Hegelian one would strike many as ludicrous. Given that the beginnings of analytic philosophy are conventionally described in terms of the radical break initiated by Russell and Moore with the Hegel-inspired idealism of their teachers at Cambridge in the closing years of the 19th century, the distinctly anti-Hegelian character of analytic philosophy has been held to be central. Moreover, the increasing naturalistic tenor of recent analytic philosophy would seem hardly propitious for a revival of 19th century idealism. And yet Rorty’s description should not be dismissed as mere provocation. (shrink)
A Michelson interferometer with a phase-conjugate mirror (PCM) is described and discussed. The behavior of phase conjugate mirrors is discussed and the result of an experiment with a Michelson interferometer with a phase-conjugate mirror is described and commented. This interferometer has been proposed to be used to test the intrinsic non-locality of quantum mechanics. In this paper a new experimental setup to study the one-way velocity of light is proposed, which uses this new interesting device.
Significant claims about science education form an integral part of Thomas Kuhn's philosophy. Since the late 1950s, when Kuhn started wrestling with the ideas of ‘normal research’ and ‘convergent thought’, the nature of science education has played an important role in his argument. Hence, the nature of science education is an essential aspect of the phase-model of scientific development developed in his famous The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, just as his later work on categories and conceptual structures takes its starting (...) point in the transmission rather than the creation of concepts and categories. (shrink)
This paper challenges the commonly made claim that the work of Pierre Bourdieu is fundamentally anti-Hegelian in orientation. In contrast, it argues that the development of Bourdieu's work from its earliest structuralist through its later 'post-structuralist' phase is better described in terms of a shift from a late nineteenth century neo-Kantian to a distinctly Hegelian post-Kantian outlook. In his break with structuralism, Bourdieu appealed to a bodily based 'logic of practice' to explain the binaristic logic of Lévi-Strauss' structuralist analyses of (...) myth. Effectively working within the tradition of the Durkheimian approach to symbolic classification, Lévi-Strauss had inherited Durkheim's distinctly neo-Kantian understanding of the role of categories in experience and action—an account that conflated two forms of representation—'intuitions' and 'concepts—that Kant himself had held distinct. Bourdieu's appeal to the role of the body's dispositional habitus can be considered as a retrieval of Hegel's earlier quite different reworking of Kant's intuition-concept distinction in terms of distinct 'logics' with different forms of 'negation'. Bourdieu commonly acknowledged the parallels of his analyses of social life to those of Hegel, but opposed Hegelianism because he believed that Hegel had remained entrapped within the dynamics of mythopoeic thought. In contrast, Durkheim and Lévi-Strauss, he claimed, by instituting a science of myth, had broken with it. This criticism of Hegel, however, relies on an understanding of his philosophy that has been rejected by many contemporary Hegel scholars, and without it, the gap separating Hegel and Bourdieu narrows dramatically. (shrink)
An unresolved debate in Bentham scholarship concerns the question of the timing and circumstances which led to Bentham's ‘conversion’ to democracy, and thus to political radicalism. In the early stages of the French Revolution, Bentham composed material which appeared to justify equality of suffrage on utilitarian grounds, but there are differing interpretations concerning the extent and depth of Bentham's commitment to democracy at this time. The appearance of Rights, Representation, and Reform: Nonsense upon Stilts and other essays on the French (...) Revolution, a new volume in The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham, containing definitive texts of Bentham's writings at this crucial period, offers an opportunity to reassess this debate. First, Bentham's most radical proposals for political reform came not in the so-called ‘Essay on Representation’ composed in late 1788 and early 1789, as has traditionally been assumed, but in his ‘Projet of a Constitutional Code for France’ composed in the autumn of 1789, where he advocated universal adult suffrage, subject to a literacy test. Second, it may be doubted if the very question as to whether Bentham was or was not a sincere convert to democracy is particularly helpful. Rather, it may be better to see Bentham as a ‘projector’ during this period of his life. Third, the nature of Bentham's radicalism was very different at this period from what it would become in the 1810s and 1820s, for instance in relation to his commitment to the traditional structures of the British Constitution. Having said that, his attitude to the British Constitution remained complex and ambivalent. At his most radical phase, in the autumn of 1789, he advocated wide-ranging measures of electoral reform while at the same time harbouring aspirations to be returned to Parliament for one of the Marquis of Lansdowne's pocket boroughs. To conclude, it was, arguably, the internal dynamic of Bentham's critical utilitarianism, rather than the events of the French Revolution, which was ultimately responsible for pushing him into a novel form of radical politics. (shrink)
After the demise of logical empiricism in the late fifties of the past century, philosophy of science entered a sort of Kuhnian revolutionary phase. Both its central problems and the methods used to address them underwent a profound change; under the pressure of the “new” philosophy of science—and of the various historical, sociological, cultural, or feminist approaches—the way of doing philosophy championed by Carnap and Popper was progressively abandoned by many scholars interested in the study of science. Today, it is (...) unclear whether this revolutionary phase is coming to an end, and if a new paradigm is in sight. That this may be the case is suggested by the appearance of some advanced introductions to the philosophy of science, which aim at replacing classical work like those by Carnap and Hempel as manuals for the present generation of scholars. These new contributions provide the student, and the expert as well, with a firm grip of what, following Kuipers .. (shrink)
The “observational categoricals” constitute a very special set of sentences of great importance in the last phase of Quine’s work. According to Quine, the grammatical structure and therefore the role played by these sentences considered by the philosopher as the neutral empirical content of theories would solve several difficulties in semantics and epistemology. Most urgent among them would be: the incommensurability of theories, their empirical verifiability, as well as explaining the language learning process. In consequence of the importance of their (...) task and their rather late appearance, we consider quite relevant to investigate in details the origin of these choice, as well as the structure and function of these sentences, very peculiars to Quine’s semantical approach. (shrink)
Although the word-frequency effect is one of the most established findings in spoken-word recognition, the precise processing locus of this effect is still a topic of debate. In this study, we used event-related potentials (ERPs) to track the time course of the word-frequency effect. In addition, the neighborhood density effect, which is known to reflect mechanisms involved in word identification, was also examined. The ERP data showed a clear frequency effect as early as 350 ms from word onset on the (...) P350, followed by a later effect at word offset on the late N400. A neighborhood density effect was also found at an early stage of spoken-word processing on the PMN, and at word offset on the late N400. Overall, our ERP differences for word frequency suggest that frequency affects the core processes of word identification starting from the initial phase of lexical activation and including target word selection. They thus rule out any interpretation of the word frequency effect that is limited to a purely decisional locus after word identification has been completed. (shrink)
In typical development, word learning goes from slow and laborious to fast and seemingly effortless. Typically developing 2-year-olds seem to intuit the whole range of things in a category from hearing a single instance named—they have word-learning biases. This is not the case for children with relatively small vocabularies. We present a computational model that accounts for the emergence of word-learning biases in children at both ends of the vocabulary spectrum based solely on vocabulary structure. The results of Experiment 1 (...) show that late-talkers' and early-talkers' noun vocabularies have different structures and that neural networks trained on the vocabularies of individual late talkers acquire different word-learning biases than those trained on early-talker vocabularies. These models make novel predictions about the word-learning biases in these two populations. Experiment 2 tests these predictions on late- and early-talking toddlers in a novel noun generalization task. (shrink)
Schwinger’s algebra of microscopic measurement, with the associated complex field of transformation functions, is shown to provide the foundation for a discrete quantum phase space of known type, equipped with a Wigner function and a star product. Discrete position and momentum variables label points in the phase space, each taking \(N\) distinct values, where \(N\) is any chosen prime number. Because of the direct physical interpretation of the measurement symbols, the phase space structure is thereby related to definite experimental configurations.
In the rise of modern scientific philosophy, one can distinguish four general periods. Its early phase is part of the intellectual history of 19th-century Austria-Hungary. Second, we find it reaching its self-confident form in the 1920s and early ‘30s, chiefly in the collaborative achievements of the Vienna Circle and its analogous groups in Prague, Berlin, Lwow and Warsaw. Third is the period of its further growth and accommodation during the period roughly from the late 1930s to about 1960, especially in (...) the U.S.A., as mediated largely by the European refugees from fascism. Lastly, the movement’s fate from the 1960s on may be understood as its integration with, or dissolution into, other related modern streams. (shrink)
In this paper I discuss a central objection against diseases being natural kinds—namely, that diseases are processes or transitions and hence they should not be conceptualized in the ‘substantish’ framework of natural kinds. I indicate that the objection hinges on conceiving disease kinds as phase kinds, in contrast to the non-phase, natural kinds of the exact sciences. I focus on somatic diseases and argue, via a representative comparison, that if disease kinds are phase kinds, then exact science kinds are phase (...) kinds as well. On the other hand, if exact science kinds are non-phase kinds, then disease kinds are non-phase kinds as well. This objection should thus be rejected, under a certain caveat, though. If natural kind membership has an influence over the diachronic identity of kind members, then it is possible, in principle, to draw the phase/non-phase distinction such that an ‘ontological gap’ lies between medical kinds and exact science kinds. I show further that this caveat is unavoidable even in relation to substantive universals and ‘essential’ properties—two controversial, strong features that were traditionally associated to natural kinds. (shrink)
We show the existence of Lorentz invariant Berry phases generated, in the Stueckelberg–Horwitz–Piron manifestly covariant quantum theory (SHP), by a perturbed four dimensional harmonic oscillator. These phases are associated with a fractional perturbation of the azimuthal symmetry of the oscillator. They are computed numerically by using time independent perturbation theory and the definition of the Berry phase generalized to the framework of SHP relativistic quantum theory.
A sequence of theoretical models is constructed as an extension to Leszek Nowak's theory of socialist society to explain important characteristics of the violent party purges in Soviet Stalinism. According to these models, purges are a regular and systemic feature of a socialist system during a certain phase of development (modelled as the phase of social enslavement). Contrary to traditional conceptions which interpret the purges essentially as resulting from the actions of an almost omnipotent, and partly irrational, despot, the models (...) presented here provide an explanation which does not need to conceive Stalin as the architect of terror (Robert Conquest), i.e. as the long-term planner of the terror. However, the concepts presented here preserve the vital arguments of the traditional approach, thereby contradicting the revisionist pattern of interpretation. In particular the models seek to provide a theoretical base for an explanation of the moderation of inner-party terror from 1938. This moderation is interpreted as resulting from a modification of the then existing ideology (and corresponding habits of the party's leadership); a modification which in itself had been stimulated by the disastrous effects of the great purge in 1937/38. This modification can be theoretically conceived as a process of ideological learning. The historical fact that the post-war purges (i.e. the Leningrad affair in 1949 and the Mingrelian affair 1951/52) did not reach such an enormous extent as the purges of the late 1930s may thus be attributed to a process of ideological learning. (shrink)
As this foreword is written, at the dawn of the 21st Century, the cognitive sciences are in epistemological ferment. The exuberant optimism of the late 20th-Century adaptationist programme has, itself, started to fragment like the many fingers of a wave against the implacable shore of empirical reality. Dramatic new directions in the philosophy of mind and in developmental psychology are beginning to mature. This special issue, Pointing: Where Embodied Cognition meets the Symbolic Mind, edited by Massimiliano Cappuccio, brings together in (...) one volume an incendiary mix of the emerging generation of philosophers and language researchers, who bring their diverse perspectives to moor on one of the most fascinating phenomena in human development: the ability to co-orient in both space and time to a common focus with what seems, on the face of it, to be a simple pointing gesture. The emerging significance of research and analysis pertaining to pointing reflects a recent phase shift in the sciences concerned with mind and behaviour. To put these innovations in context, it might be worthwhile to review the sweeping upheavals that have recently occurred in the conceptual bedrocks of psychology and the philosophy of language. (shrink)
The era from the late fifties to the early seventies was marked in Africa and the Caribbean by a rush of newly articulated anticolonial sentiment that was associated with the burgeoning of both international back consciousness and more localized nationalist movements. Between 1957 and 1973 the vast majority of African and the larger Caribbean colonies won their independence; the same period witnessed the Cuban and Algerian revolutions, the latter phase of the Kenyan “Mau Mau” revolt, the Katanga crisis in the (...) Cong, the Trinidadian Black Power uprising and, equally important for the atmosphere of militant defiance, the civil rights movement in the United States, the student revolts of 1968, and the humbling of the United States during the Vietnam War. This period was distinguished, among Caribbean and African intellectuals, by a pervasive mood of optimistic outrage. Frequently graduates of British or French universities, they were the first generation from their regions self-assured and numerous enough to call collectively for a renunciation of Western standards as the political revolts found their cultural counterparts in insurrections against the bequeathed values of the colonial powers.In the context of such challenges to an increasingly discredited European colonialism, a series of dissenting intellectual chose to utilize a European text as a strategy for getting “out from under this ancient mausoleum of [Western] historic achievement.”1 They seized upon The Tempest as a way of amplifying their class for decolonization within the bounds of the dominant cultures. But at the same time these Caribbeans and Africans adopted the play as a founding text in an oppositional lineage which issued from a geopolitically and historically specific set of cultural ambitions. They perceived that the play could contribute to their self-definition during a period of great flux. So, through repeated, reinforcing, transgressive appropriations of The Tempest, a once silenced group generated its own tradition of “error” which in turn served as one component of the grander counterhegemonic nationalist and black internationalist endeavors of the period. Because that era of Caribbean and African history was marked by such extensive, open contestation of cultural values, the destiny of The Tempest at that time throws into uncommonly stark relief the status of value as an unstable social process rather than a static and, in literary terms, merely textual attribute. Rob Nixon is a Ph.D. candidate in English at Columbia University. He is working on the topics of exile and Third World-metropolitan relations in the writing of V. S. and Shiva Naipaul. His previous contribution to Critical Inquiry is “No Names Apart: The Separation of Word and History in Derrida’s ‘Le Dernier Mot du Racisme’ ”. (shrink)
Nikos K. Logothetis University of Manchester, Manchester, UK In binocular rivalry, the visual percept alternates stochastically between two dichoptically presented stimuli. It is established that both processes related to the eye of origin and binocular, stimulus-related processes account for these ﬂuctuations in conscious perception. Here we studied how their relative contributions vary over time. We applied brief disruptions to rivalry displays, concurrent with an optional eye swap, at varying time intervals after one stimulus became visible (dominant). We found that early (...) in a dominance phase the dominant eye determined the percept by stabilizing its own contribution (regardless of the stimulus), with an additional yet weaker stabilizing contribution of the stimulus (regardless of the eye). Their stabilizing contributions declined in parallel with time so that late in a dominance phase the stimulus (and in some cases also the eye-based) contribution turned negative, favoring a perceptual (or ocular) switch. Our ﬁndings show that depending on the time, ﬁrst processes related to the eye of origin and then those related to the stimulus can have a greater net inﬂuence on the stability of the conscious percept. Their co-varying change may be due to feedback from image- to eyeof-origin representations. (shrink)
Defining the observable φ canonically conjugate to the number observable N has long been an open problem in quantum theory. The problem stems from the fact that N is bounded from below. In a previous work we have shown how to define the absolute phase observable Φ≡|φ| by suitably restricting the Hilbert space of x and p like variables. Here we show that also from the classical point of view, there is no rigorous definition for the phase even though it's (...) absolute value is well defined. (shrink)
Faraday demonstrated electromagnetic induction in 1831 using an iron ring wound with two wire coils; on interrupting battery current in one coil, momentary currents arose in the other. Between Faraday's ring and the induction coil, coiled instruments developed via meandering paths. This paper explores the opening phase of that work in the late 1830s, as the iron core, primary wire coil, and secondary wire coil were researched and differentiated. ‘Working knowledge’ gained with materials and phenomena was crucial to innovations. To (...) understand these material-based interactions, I experimented with hand-wound coils, along with examining historical texts, drawings, and artefacts. My experience recovered the historical dead-end of two-wire coils and ensuing work with long-coiled single conductors initiated by Faraday and Henry. The shock and spark heightened in these coils provided feedback to the many instrumental configurations tested by Page, Callan, Sturgeon, Bachhoffner, and others. The continuous conductor differentiated into two segments soldered together: a thick short wire carrying battery current and a long thin wire for elevating shocks . The joined wires eventually separated, yet their transitional connection documents belief that the induced effects depend on continuity. These coiled instruments, with their intertwined histories, show experimental work and understandings in the process of developing. Seeing the nonlinear paths by which these instruments developed deepens our understanding of historical experiences, and of how people learn. (shrink)