In Politics 2.2-5 Aristotle criticises the state described in Plato’s Republic. The general consensus in the secondary literature is that Aristotle’s critique is unfair and too narrow in scope. Aristotle unjustifiably ignores significant parts of Plato’s Republic and unreasonably assumes that the community of wives, children and property extends to the whole of Kallipolis. Although R. Mayhew’s defence of Aristotle’s criticism has mitigated this negative assessment, the problem has remained unresolved. This paper questions the traditional view and suggests an explanation (...) of Aristotle’s selective reading of Plato’s Republic. Based on what turns out to be a reasonable interpretation of Plato’s text, Aristotle does not extend Plato’s communism to the whole city, but rather reduces Plato’s city to the community of the guardians. As a result, Aristotle’s arguments in fact hit the mark and present Aristotle as a much fairer reader than is usually acknowledged. (shrink)
_Demoralized: Why Teachers Leave the Profession They Love and How They Can Stay_ offers a timely analysis of professional dissatisfaction that challenges the common explanation of burnout. Featuring the voices of educators, the book offers concrete lessons for practitioners, school leaders, and policy makers on how to think more strategically to retain experienced teachers and make a difference in the lives of students. Based on ten years of research and interviews with practitioners across the United States, the book theorizes the (...) existence of a “moral center” that can be pivotal in guiding teacher actions and expectations on the job. Education philosopher Doris Santoro argues that demoralization offers a more precise diagnosis that is born out of ongoing value conflicts with pedagogical policies, reform mandates, and school practices. _Demoralized_ reveals that this condition is reversible when educators are able to tap into authentic professional communities and shows that individuals can help themselves. Detailed stories from veteran educators are included to illustrate the variety of contexts in which demoralization can occur. Based on these insights, Santoro offers an array of recommendations and promising strategies for how school leaders, union leaders, teacher groups, and individual practitioners can enact and support “re-moralization” by working to change the conditions leading to demoralization. (shrink)
In this essay, Doris Santoro examines the discourse of “fidelity of instruction” to show how it is doublespeak for teacher compliance that is incompatible with democracy and education. Analyzing the distorted use of the term “fidelity” by market-based reformers, Santoro illustrates how it can be used as a weapon against teacher intelligence and moral response. She argues that John Dewey's philosophy provides conceptual resources to reframe some teacher infidelity as intelligent response, the moral agency required for pedagogical responsibility.
Achille Varzi è uno dei maggiori metafisici viventi. Nel corso degli anni ha scritto testi fondamentali di logica, metafisica, mereologia, filosofia del linguaggio. Ha sconfinato nella topologia, nella geografia, nella matematica, ha ragionato di mostri e confini, percezione e buchi, viaggi nel tempo, nicchie, eventi e ciambelle; e non ha disdegnato di dialogare con gli abitanti di Flatlandia, con Neo e con Terminator. Tra le sue opere principali: Holes and Other Superficialities e Parts and Places. The Structures of Spatial Representation, (...) entrambi scritti insieme a R. Casati per MIT Press; Il mondo messo a fuoco, Laterza; e il suo libro più recente: Le tribolazioni del filosofare, con C. Calosi, per Laterza. -/- Da una giornata all’Università di Urbino nasce questa conversazione a molte voci sulla e con la filosofia di Achille C. Varzi. In un dialogo critico al quale l’Autore si presta con generosità e onestà intellettuale, Andrea Borghini, Francesco Calemi, Claudio Calosi, Elena Casetta, Valeria Giardino, Pierluigi Graziani, Patrizia Pedrini, Daniele Santoro e Giuliano Torrengo lo interrogano e mettono alla prova sui temi affrontati, nel corso degli anni, in campi diversi. Il risultato è un percorso che si snoda attraverso molti mondi, dalla logica alla metafisica, dalla filosofia del linguaggio alla filosofia della matematica, dalla mereologia alla filosofia del tempo, spingendosi in qualche caso oltre i confini del saggio filosofico. (shrink)
We argue that some sign language loci (i.e. positions in signing space that realize discourse referents) are both formal variables and simplified representations of what they denote; in other words, they are simultaneously logical symbols and pictorial representations. We develop a 'formal semantics with iconicity' that accounts for their dual life; the key idea ('formal iconicity') is that some geometric properties of signs must be preserved by the interpretation function. We analyze in these terms three kinds of iconic effects in (...) American and French Sign Language (ASL and LSF): (i) structural iconicity, where relations of inclusion and complementation among loci are directly reflected in their denotations; (ii) locus-external iconicity, where the high or low position of a locus in signing space has a direct semantic reflex, akin to the semantic contribution of gender features of pronouns; and (iii) locus-internal iconicity, where different parts of a structured locus are targeted by different directional verbs, as was argued by Liddell and Kegl. The resulting semantics combines insights of two traditions that have been sharply divided by recent debates. In line with the 'formalist camp' (e.g. Lillo-Martin and Klima, Neidle, and Sandler and Lillo-Martin), our theory treats loci as variables, and develops an explicit formal analysis of their behavior. But we also incorporate insights of the 'iconic camp', which emphasized the role of iconic constraints in sign language in general and in pronominals in particular (e.g. Cuxac, Taub, Liddell). However, this synthesis is only possible if formal semantics makes provisions for iconic requirements at the very core of its interpretive procedure. (An Appendix discusses relevant data from Italian Sign Language [LIS].). (shrink)
Brette contends that the neural coding metaphor is an invalid basis for theories of what the brain does. Here, we argue that it is an insufficient guide for building an artificial intelligence that learns to accomplish short- and long-term goals in a complex, changing environment.
The literatures of business ethics and international business have generally had little influence on each other. Nevertheless, the decline in the power of nation states, the emergence of non-governmental organizations, the proliferation of self-regulatory bodies, and the changing responsibilities, roles, and structure of multinational corporations make constructive engagement between these two disciplines imperative. This changing institutional landscape creates many areas of common concern. In this article, we describe the changing institutional context of global business and suggest ways in which both (...) business ethics and international business may inform each other more fruitfully. (shrink)
Proceduralists hold that democracy has a non-instrumental value consisting in the ideal of equality incorporated by fair procedures. Yet, proceduralism does not imply that every outcome of a democratic procedure is fair per se. In the non-ideal setting of constitutional democracies, government and legislative decisions may result from factional conflicts, or depend on majoritarian dictatorships. In these circumstances, Supreme Courts provide a guardianship against contested outcomes by enacting mechanisms of checks and balances, constitutional interpretation and judicial review. Yet, in virtue (...) of this role, Supreme Courts exercise a form of epistocratic power, which rests at odds with the ideal of political equality. We analyse this dilemma and propose a solution, arguing that Supreme Courts do not run unrestrained decisions; rather their decisional power is bound to the protective function of fundamental rights, in which their constitutional mandate ultimately consists. (shrink)
In this methodological reflection, I describe the multidisciplinary hermeneutic process of philosophizing about teacher dissatisfaction. I discuss how philosophy serves as a starting point for interpretive work based on interviews with former teachers and readings of qualitative and quantitative research on teacher attrition and dissatisfaction. The result has been a project that enabled me to offer new descriptions of phenomena and to develop concepts that can be used to interpret the moral dimensions of teacher dissatisfaction. The fact that I return (...) to language and concepts as my research outcomes is why, despite my multidisciplinary approach, I continue to describe my work as philosophical. I suggest that philosophical enquiry pursued through empirical research has the potential to inform larger empirical studies, serve as a “sensitizing instrument” for empirical analysis, and to open discursive spaces where common understandings limit interpretive possibilities. (shrink)
Whistleblowing is the act of disclosing information from a public or private organization in order to reveal cases of corruption that are of immediate or potential danger to the public. Blowing the whistle involves personal risk, especially when legal protection is absent, and charges of betrayal, which often come in the form of legal prosecution under treason laws. In this article we argue that whistleblowing is justified when disclosures are made with the proper intent and fulfill specific communicative constraints in (...) addressing issues of public interest. Three communicative constraints of informativeness, truthfulness and evidence are discussed in this regard. We develop a ‘harm test’ to assess the intent for disclosures, concluding that it is not sufficient for justification. Along with the proper intent, a successful act of whistleblowing should provide information that serves the public interest. Taking cognizance of the varied conceptions of public interest, we present an account of public interest that fits the framework of whistleblowing disclosures. In particular, we argue that whistleblowing is justified inter alia when the information it conveys is of a presumptive interest for a public insofar as it reveals an instance of injustice or violation of a civil or political right done against and unbeknown to some members of a polity. (shrink)
Donaldson and Dunfee (1999) suggest in a brief discussion that a manager may in some cases rely on his or her own values inmaking organizational decisions. Our paper examines the role of diversity in values in an organizational context. Our central contentionis that value diversity among managers, employees, and other stakeholders on dimensions such as prudence-boldness, clarity-flexibility, and rigor-mercy is highly useful for an organization. We introduce nontechnical models of individual and board decision-making in which value diversity cuts across group (...) interests that would otherwise control the decision. In these models, decision-makers who are influenced by values such as prudence or boldness as well as by their group interests are more likely to avoid suboptimal decisions, because their weaker but not their more intense group interests are likely to be overridden by their cross-cutting value inclinations. (shrink)
Step therapy is an insurance company policy whereby patients must try a less costly treatment and fail-first before the insurer will cover another, more costly treatment. This article argues that there are relevant and well-established principles of medical ethics—the duty to practice evidenced-based medicine and the duty to consider cost-effectiveness when treating patients—that constrain and guide physician behavior with respect to step therapy; clinical practice guidelines promulgated by authoritative physician groups attempt to incorporate and reconcile the competing demands of evidenced-based (...) and cost-effective medicine, although it is unclear whether they do so in a manner that appropriately considers all relevant ethical factors relating to cost-effectiveness; and despite the potential shortcomings of CPGs, the ethical principles guiding and constraining physician behavior can help demarcate the ethical boundaries for other actors in the drug prescribing and reimbursement matrix, including insurance companies and benefit managers. (shrink)
The import of computational learning theories and techniques on the ethics of human-robot interaction is explored in the context of recent developments of personal robotics. An epistemological reflection enables one to isolate a variety of background hypotheses that are needed to achieve successful learning from experience in autonomous personal robots. The conjectural character of these background hypotheses brings out theoretical and practical limitations in our ability to predict and control the behaviour of learning robots in their interactions with humans. Responsibility (...) ascription problems, which concern damages caused by learning robot actions, are analyzed in the light of these epistemic limitations. Finally, a broad framework is outlined for ethically motivated scientific inquiries, which aim at improving our capability to understand, anticipate, and selectively cope with harmful errors by learning robots. (shrink)
Moral madness is a symptom of the moral violence experienced by teachers who are expected to exercise responsibility for their students and their work, but whose moral voice is misrecognized as self-interest and whose moral agency is suppressed. I conduct a feminist ethical analysis of the figure of Cassandra to examine the ways in which teachers may be driven to moral madness.
In The Beautiful Risk of Education, Gert Biesta displays his gift for engaging generously with the thought of others to illuminate what makes education educational, that is, the value in maintaining the complexity and risk involved in a dialogic approach to education. As Biesta puts it, “[education] is therefore, again, a dialogical process. This makes the educational way the slow way, the difficult way, the frustrating way, and so we might say, the weak way” . Such a view of education (...) promises no “results”, in fact the outcomes of education can never be guaranteed. Embracing the risk inherent in this weak notion of education entails welcoming the risk involved in teaching. In this review, we focus on Biesta’s attention to the meaning of teaching and his call for a kind of teacher education that learns from and develops virtuosity. We find Biesta’s use of the term “virtuosity”—rather than the more typical usage for the exercise of wisdom found in educational theory, “virtue”—prod .. (shrink)
In «Mancanze, omissioni, e descrizioni negative»,55 Achille Varzi esplora le conseguenze di una forma comune di ragionamento causale, quella in cui citiamo mancanze od omissioni nel fornire una spiegazione delle cause degli eventi. Tale forma appare di comune uso nei contesti normativi del diritto, nelle spiegazioni tipiche delle scienze sociali e, più in generale, nel ragionamento ordinario. Ciò che accomuna questi casi è l’idea intuitiva secondo cui le cause possono anche consistere in eventi negativi. L’intuizione non è però metafisicamente innocua, (...) poiché per affermare che una spiegazione come "C’è stata un’esplosione perché Gianni non ha spento il gas" sia una buona spiegazione, occorre assumere che gli eventi negativi come “il non aver spento il gas da parte di Gianni” esistano al pari di eventi come l’esplosione e dal momento che, solo se sono entrambi eventi, può tra questi sussistere una relazione casuale. Dovremmo pertanto concludere che (1) è perfettamente intellegibile e rispecchia le nostre pratiche linguistiche. Spesso parliamo assumendo che ci siano cose che le persone non fanno: il gas che Gianni non ha spento, la passeggiata che non abbiamo fatto, il treno che non è arrivato, ecc. La sensatezza di questi usi esige pertanto il dover riconoscere una certa legittimità al vocabolario delle omissioni e delle descrizioni negative. Varzi sostiene che questo modo di parlare solleva tuttavia degli scrupoli ontologici,56 poiché non è possibile assumersi alcun serio impegno ontologico nei confronti di eventi negativi, ancor meno quando le nostre asserzioni richiedono di quantificare su eventi “inesistenti”. Una strategia per ovviare a questo scrupolo è sostenere che queste pratiche linguistiche sono analoghe a quelle in cui parliamo di oggetti “inesistenti”, ossia di oggetti che è come se ci fossero, ma che riconosciamo esistere soltanto in un contesto finzionale. Dunque l’analogia con gli oggetti finzionali può rendere in qualche modo espliciti i vincoli ontologici, giustificando quegli usi linguistici. Sebbene questo argomento abbia la sua plausibilità, Varzi nota che «ad un esame più attento, gli eventi non accaduti si rivelano ben più resistenti al rasoio di Occam di quanto l’analogia con gli oggetti non esistenti suggerisca » poiché il nostro linguaggio causale ci induce spesso a ritenere che «il riferimento o la quantificazione nei confronti di eventi non accaduti sia da intendersi in senso stretto e letterale»,57 in contrasto con quanto suggerisce l’analogia con gli oggetti finzionali. La difficoltà nasce dall’argomento per cui, se la causazione è una relazione tra eventi, occorre prendere sul serio l’idea che gli eventi negativi siano negativi stricto sensu. La tesi di Varzi è che questa tesi sia una contraddizione genuina e che l’unico modo di risolverla sia di rinunciare all’idea che gli eventi negativi esistano in un qualsiasi senso. In questo articolo intendo analizzare un aspetto di questa forma di parsimonia ontologica. Il mio intento è di valutare le conseguenze della tesi di Varzi dal punto di vista della spiegazione causale in contesti controfattuali e nei casi di omissione del diritto. (shrink)
Many scholars have pursued philosophical inquiry through empirical research. These empirical projects have been shaped—to varying degrees and in different ways—by philosophical questions, traditions, frameworks and analytic approaches. This issue explores the methodological challenges and opportunities involved in these kinds of projects. In this essay, we briefly introduce the nine projects featured in this issue and then address two key questions: First, how do these diverse contributors understand their empirical research as a mode of philosophical inquiry? And, second, what is (...) the value in engaging in empirical research oneself, as opposed to drawing on the empirical work of others? As the essays in this issue demonstrate, there is no single answer to these questions. Our hope is that these guiding questions—and the diverse and divergent answers offered within this special issue—might demonstrate the live and pressing methodological questions involved in integrating empirical research and philosophical inquiry. (shrink)
Inequality causes a variety of social ills, which give egalitarians reasons for concerns of justice. In particular, inequality is deemed to undermine people’s fundamental moral capacity of self-respect. In this paper, we explore the complex relationship between inequality and self-respect from a philosophical and an empirical angle, arguing that a theory of justice should take both into account. To this purpose, we first clarify the normative objection to inequality from the alleged erosion of self-respect. Then, we elaborate on empirical findings (...) showing the crucial role that ‘relative deprivation’ plays in the causal mechanism that connects inequalities to the erosion of self-respect. We conclude that this role is best understood in philosophical terms as a form of deprivation that affects thesignificance that people attach to the value of the choices they make. (shrink)
Only months following the declaration of the Turkish Republic in October 1923, Turkey’s newly appointed Minister of Public Instruction, Sefa Bey, invited U.S. philosopher and educator John Dewey to survey his fledgling country’s educational system. Having just emerged from a brutal war for independence, Turkey was beginning a process of rapid modernization under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal “Atatürk,” and government officials looked to Dewey for recommendations on how to make Turkish schools agencies of social reform that would advance their (...) state’s identity as a democratic republic. Dewey traveled for two months throughout the country with his wife, Alice, and met with teachers and government officials in .. (shrink)
Nijhawan argues convincingly that predictive mechanisms are pervasive in the central nervous system (CNS). However, scientific understanding of visual prediction requires one to formulate empirically testable neurophysiological models. The author's suggestions in this direction are to be evaluated on the basis of more realistic experimental methodologies and more plausible assumptions on the hierarchical character of the human visual cortex.
Analytic pragmatism is a framework of analysis elaborated by Robert Brandom, whose goal is to explain the relations between meaning and use according to a systematic and general method of inquiry. In April 2009, a workshop was organized to discuss the recent developments of this new theoretical approach. Brandom delivered three lectures, where he explored some aspects of analytic pragmatism and addressed the motivating themes of this enterprise, while the contribution from the other speakers ranged over specific aspects of the (...) theory. This special issue is the outcome of that workshop. In this introduction we briefly outline the context of the debate and present the contribution to this issue selected from a much wider range of papers, using the reviewing process of Philosophia. (shrink)
Propongo una explicación sobre el concepto de ética de la ciu- dad respecto a la sociedad en la que vivimos. El artículo se enfoca en resaltar el contraste social y urbanístico, que se generó y sigue creciendo en Argentina de manera puntual en Buenos Aires, respecto a las villas miseria. En específico se tratan las diferencias entre la Villa 31,el barrio pobre, y Puerto Madero,el barrio rico, dos realidades tan distintas como tan similares que viven codo a codo.
O PRESENTE ARTIGO PRETENDE ELUCIDAR O SIGNIFICADO DO PRINCÍPIO DO SISTEMA FILOSÓFICO DE FICHTE, A SABER, A CONSCIÊNCIA-DE-SI DO EU, À LUZ DE SUA HERANÇA KANTIANA. NESSE SENTIDO, A TESE CENTRAL DA DOUTRINA-DACIÊNCIA FICHTIANA SERÁ CONTRAPOSTA ÀS CRITICAS FEITAS POR KANT À POSSIBILIDADE DE UM CONHECIMENTO EFETIVO DO EU, MAIS ESPECIFICAMENTE A PARTIR DE SUA EXPOSIÇÃO DO TEMA NO CAPÍTULO DA PRIMEIRA CRÍTICA SOBRE OS PARALOGISMOS DA RAZÃO PURA. O TEXTO SE ENCERRA COM UMA BREVE EXPOSIÇÃO DAS TRANSFORMAÇÕES QUE O (...) CONCEITO DE APERCEPÇÃO RECEBEU NA OBRA DE FICHTE. (shrink)