Agnieszka Jaworska and Julie Tannenbaum recently developed the ingenious and novel person‐rearing account of moral status, which preserves the commonsense judgment that humans have a higher moral status than nonhuman animals. It aims to vindicate speciesist judgments while avoiding the problems typically associated with speciesist views. We argue, however, that there is good reason to reject person‐rearing views. Person‐rearing views have to be coupled with an account of flourishing, which will (according to Jaworska and Tannenbaum) be either a species (...) norm or an intrinsic potential account of flourishing. As we show, however, person‐rearing accounts generate extremely implausible consequences when combined with the accounts of flourishing Jaworska and Tannenbaum need for the purposes of their view. (shrink)
The notion of a migration system is often invoked but it is rarely clearly defined or conceptualized. De Haas recently provided a powerful critique of the current literature highlighting some important flaws that recur through it. In particular, migration systems tend to be identified as fully formed entities, and there is no theorization as to how they come into being and how they break down. The internal dynamics which drive such changes are not examined. Such critiques of migration systems relate (...) to wider critiques of the concept of systems in the broader social science literature, where they are often presented as black boxes in which human agency is largely excluded. The challenge is how to theorize system dynamics in which the actions of people at one time contribute to the emergence of systemic linkages at a later time. This article focuses on the genesis of migration systems and the notion of pioneer migration. It draws attention both to the role of particular individuals, the pioneers, and also the more general activity of pioneering which is undertaken by many migrants. By disentangling different aspects of agency, it is possible to develop hypotheses about how the emergence of migrations systems is related to the nature of the agency exercised by different pioneers or pioneering activities in different contexts. Content Type Journal Article Category Article Pages 413-437 DOI 10.1558/jcr.v11i4.413 Authors Oliver Bakewell, International Migration Institute, University of Oxford Hein De Haas, International Migration Institute, University of Oxford Agnieszka Kubal, International Migration Institute, University of Oxford Journal Journal of Critical Realism Online ISSN 1572-5138 Print ISSN 1476-7430 Journal Volume Volume 11 Journal Issue Volume 11, Number 4 / 2012. (shrink)
Reviews/interviews/contributors Tributes to Professor Andrzej Kopcewicz - Agnieszka Salska New Media Effects on Traditional News Sources: A Review of the State of American Newspapers - Richard Profozich Review of The Body, ed. by Ilona Dobosiewicz and Jacek Gutorow - Grzegorz Kość “Taste good iny?”: Images of and from Australian Indigenous Literature - Jared Thomas Speaks with Teresa Podemska-Abt Engaging the “Forbidden Texts” of Philosophy - Pamela Sue Anderson Talks to Alison Jasper.
This article discusses what is involved in having full moral status, as opposed to a lesser degree of moral status and surveys different views of the grounds of moral status as well as the arguments for attributing a particular degree of moral status on the basis of those grounds.
In his work on internality, identification, and caring, Harry Frankfurt attempts to delineate the organization of agency peculiar to human beings, while avoiding the traditional overintellectualized emphasis on the human capacity to reason about action. The focal point of Frankfurt’s alternative picture is our capacity to make our own motivation the object of reflection. Building upon the observation that marginal agents (such as young children and Alzheimer’s patients) are capable of caring, I show that neither caring nor internality need to (...) depend on the phenomena of reflectiveness. I develop alternative interlocking accounts of caring and internality that are independent of both reflectiveness and evaluation, but that can still do justice to the central role of carings in the organization of agency characteristic of human persons. (shrink)
Our awareness of time and temporal properties is a constant feature of conscious life. Subjective temporality structures and guides every aspect of behavior and cognition, distinguishing memory, perception, and anticipation. This milestone volume brings together research on temporality from leading scholars in philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience, defining a new field of interdisciplinary research. The book's thirty chapters include selections from classic texts by William James and Edmund Husserl and new essays setting them in historical context; contemporary philosophical accounts of lived (...) time; and current empirical studies of psychological time. These last chapters, the larger part of the book, cover such topics as the basic psychophysics of psychological time, its neural foundations, its interaction with the body, and its distortion in illness and altered states of consciousness. _Contributors_Melissa J. Allman, Holly Andersen, Valtteri Arstila, Yan Bao, Dean V. Buonomano, Niko A. Busch, Barry Dainton, Sylvie Droit-Volet, Christine M. Falter, Thomas Fraps, Shaun Gallagher, Alex O. Holcombe, Edmund Husserl, William James, Piotr Jaskowski, Jeremie Jozefowiez, Ryota Kanai, Allison N. Kurti, Dan Lloyd, Armando Machado, Matthew S. Matell, Warren H. Meck, James Mensch, Bruno Mölder, Catharine Montgomery, Konstantinos Moutoussis, Peter Naish, Valdas Noreika, Sukhvinder S. Obhi, Ruth Ogden, Alan o'Donoghue, Georgios Papadelis, Ian B. Phillips, Ernst Pöppel, John E. R. Staddon, Dale N. Swanton, Rufin VanRullen, Argiro Vatakis, Till M. Wagner, John Wearden, Marc Wittmann, Agnieszka Wykowska, Kielan Yarrow, Bin Yin, Dan Zahavi. (shrink)
Why does a baby who is otherwise cognitively similar to an animal such as a dog nevertheless have a higher moral status? We explain the difference in moral status as follows: the baby can, while a dog cannot, participate as a rearee in what we call “person-rearing relationships,” which can transform metaphysically and evaluatively the baby’s activities. The capacity to engage in these transformed activities has the same type of value as the very capacities (i.e., intellectual or emotional sophistication) that (...) explain unimpaired adult humans’ high moral status. We attempt to extend this account to individuals with severe cognitive impairments. (shrink)
What is it to "value" something, in the semi-technical sense of the term that Gary Watson establishes? I argue that valuing something consists in caring about it. Caring involves not only emotional dispositions of the sort that Agnieszka Jaworska has elaborated, but also a distinctive cognitive disposition – namely, a (defeasible) disposition to believe the object cared about to be a source of agent-relative reasons for action and for emotion. Understood in this way, an agent's carings have a stronger (...) claim to "speak for" her as her values than do other attitudes that have been proposed for this role. In particular, an agent's carings establish more robust psychological continuities and cross-temporal connections than do self-governing policies of the sort that Michael Bratman has described; and they forge diachronic coherence not just in her deliberation and action, as self-governing policies do, but also in her cognitive and emotional life. An agent's carings thus help to constitute her identity as a temporally persisting subject . Self-governing policies are at best ersatz -values, which an agent may choose to adopt when she finds that her proper values – her cares – leave her course underdetermined. (shrink)
The Jubilee Centre’s new report, Virtuous Medical Practice, examines the place of character and values in the medical profession in Britain today. Its findings are drawn from a UK-focused multi-methods study of 549 doctors and aspiring doctors at three career stages, first and final year students and experienced doctors.
Virtue ethics has long provided fruitful resources for the study of issues in medical ethics. In particular, study of the moral virtues of the good doctor—like kindness, fairness and good judgement—have provided insights into the nature of medical professionalism and the ethical demands on the medical practitioner as a moral person. Today, a substantial literature exists exploring the virtues in medical practice and many commentators advocate an emphasis on the inculcation of the virtues of good medical practice in medical education (...) and throughout the medical career. However, until very recently, no empirical studies have attempted to investigate which virtues, in particular, medical doctors and medical students tend to have or not to have, nor how these virtues influence how they think about or practise medicine. The question of what virtuous medical practice is, is vast and, as we have written elsewhere, the question of how to study doctors’ moral character is fraught with difficulty. In this paper, we report the results of a first-of-a-kind study that attempted to explore these issues at three medical schools in the United Kingdom. We identify which character traits are important in the good doctor in the opinion of medical students and doctors and identify which virtues they say of themselves they possess and do not possess. Moreover, we identify how thinking about the virtues contributes to doctors’ and medical students’ thinking about common moral dilemmas in medicine. In ending, we remark on the implications for medical education. (shrink)
Based on the growing problem of heart diseases, their efficient diagnosis is of great importance to the modern world. Statistical inference is the tool that most physicians use for diagnosis, though in many cases it does not appear powerful enough. Clustering of patient instances allows finding out groups for which statistical models can be built more efficiently. However, the performance of such an approach depends on the features used as clustering attributes. In this paper, the methodology that consists of combining (...) unsupervised feature selection and grouping to improve the performance of statistical analysis is considered. We assume that the set of attributes used in clustering and statistical analysis phases should be different and not correlated. Thus, the method consisting of selecting reversed correlated features as attributes of cluster analysis is considered. The proposed methodology has been verified by experiments done on three real datasets of cardiovascular cases. The obtained effects have been evaluated regarding the number of detected dependencies between parameters. Experiment results showed the advantage of the presented approach compared to other feature selection methods and without using clustering to support statistical inference. (shrink)
In his work on internality, identification, and caring, Harry Frankfurt attempts to delineate the organization of agency peculiar to human beings, while avoiding the traditional overintellectualized emphasis on the human capacity to reason about action. The focal point of Frankfurt’s alternative picture is our capacity to make our own motivation the object of reflection. Building upon the observation that marginal agents are capable of caring, I show that neither caring nor internality need to depend on the phenomena of reflectiveness. I (...) develop alternative interlocking accounts of caring and internality that are independent of both reflectiveness and evaluation, but that can still do justice to the central role of carings in the organization of agency characteristic of human persons. (shrink)
We discuss applications of our account of moral status grounded in person-rearing relationships: which individuals have higher moral status or not, and why? We cover three classes of cases: (1) cases involving incomplete realization of the capacity to care, including whether infants or fetuses have this incomplete capacity; (2) cases in which higher moral status rests in part on what is required for the being to flourish; (3) hypothetical cases in which cognitive enhancements could, e.g., help dogs achieve human-like cognitive (...) capacities. We thereby show that our account does not have the counterintuitive implications alleged by DeGrazia and other critics. (shrink)
This study examined individual differences in sensitivity to human-like features of a robot’s behavior. The paradigm comprised a non-verbal Turing test with a humanoid robot. A “programmed” condition differed from a “human-controlled” condition by onset times of the robot’s eye movements, which were either fixed across trials or modeled after prerecorded human reaction times, respectively. Participants judged whether the robot behavior was programmed or human-controlled, with no information regarding the differences between respective conditions. Autistic traits were measured with the autism-spectrum (...) quotient questionnaire in healthy adults. We found that the fewer autistic traits participants had, the more sensitive they were to the difference between the conditions, without explicit awareness of the nature of the difference. We conclude that although sensitivity to fine behavioral characteristics of others varies with social aptitude, humans are in general capable of detecting human-like behavior based on very subtle cues. (shrink)
This chapter focuses on moral personhood understood in terms of the notion of moral status. An entity is said to have moral status only if it or its interest matters morally for its own sake. Nonutilitarians tend to think of moral status in terms of entitlements and protections that can conflict with, and sometimes override, doing what would maximize the good and minimize the bad. If moral status comes in degrees, and if there is a status of the highest degree (...) (i.e., full moral status), then moral persons are those with full moral status. After giving a more precise account of it, we assess different views of what it takes to qualify for full moral status (some of which appeal to metaphysical notions of person). We also briefly discuss how metaphysical notions of personhood are put to moral use in utilitarian moral theorizing that eschews the notion of moral personhood. (shrink)
Broadly speaking, an entity has moral status if and only if it or its interest matters morally for its own sake. Some philosophers, who think of moral status in terms of duties and rights owed to an entity, allow that moral status can come in degrees, with only some beings having status of the highest degree – that is, full moral status (FMS). We critically review the competing accounts of what qualifies one for FMS. Some accounts demand cognitive sophistication, which (...) excludes many children, while others are inclusive of children but fail by (a) putting children morally on a par with most animals (experiencing subject of a life), (b) invoking criteria of dubious moral relevance (potentiality, membership in a biological species), or (c) not securing impartial moral status (special relationships). We end with our own account, which attempts to rectify such problems, addressing specifically the moral status of children. (shrink)
Building on our diverse research traditions in the study of reasoning, language and communication, the Polish School of Argumentation integrates various disciplines and institutions across Poland in which scholars are dedicated to understanding the phenomenon of the force of argument. Our primary goal is to craft a methodological programme and establish organisational infrastructure: this is the first key step in facilitating and fostering our research movement, which joins people with a common research focus, complementary skills and an enthusiasm to work (...) together. This statement—the Manifesto—lays the foundations for the research programme of the Polish School of Argumentation. (shrink)
Agnieszka Jaworska and Julie Tannenbaum address a central problem confronting efforts to understand moral status: the Problem of Nonparadigm Humans. The authors contend that human infants and cognitively disabled human beings whose capacities are comparable to those of dogs nevertheless have higher moral status. In this discussion, I will first reconstruct the authors’ assumptions and argumentative goals. In the article’s two major sections, I will examine the authors’ reasoning in pursuit of those goals and contend that the chain of (...) argumentation contains several weak links. The discussion will close with brief reflections on how the problem might be addressed. (shrink)
Multicellular organisms contain numerous symbiotic microorganisms, collectively called microbiomes. Recently, microbiomic research has shown that these microorganisms are responsible for the proper functioning of many of the systems of multicellular organisms. This has inclined some scholars to argue that it is about time to reconceptualise the organism and to develop a concept that would place the greatest emphasis on the vital role of microorganisms in the life of plants and animals. We believe that, unfortunately, there is a problem with this (...) suggestion, since there is no such thing as a universal concept of the organism which could constitute a basis for all biological sciences. Rather, the opposite is true: numerous alternative definitions exist. Therefore, comprehending how microbiomics is changing our understanding of organisms may be a very complex matter. In this paper we will demonstrate that this pluralism proves that claims about a change in our understanding of organisms can be treated as both true and untrue. Mainly, we assert that the existing concepts differ substantially, and that only some of them have to be reconsidered in order to incorporate the discoveries of microbiomics, while others are already flexible enough to do so. Taking into account the plurality of conceptualisations within different branches of modern biology, we will conduct our discussion using the developmental and the cooperation–conflict concepts of the organism. Then we will explain our results by referring to the recent philosophical debate on the nature of the concept of the organism within biology. (shrink)