Two studies explore the frequently reported finding that affective forecasts are too extreme. In the first study, driving test candidates forecast the emotional consequences of failing. Test failers overestimated the duration of their disappointment. Greater previous experience of this emotional event did not lead to any greater accuracy of the forecasts, suggesting that learning about one's own emotions is difficult. Failers' self-assessed chances of passing were lower a week after the test than immediately prior to the test; this difference correlated (...) with the magnitude of individual immediate disappointments, suggesting the presence of a cognitive strategy for recovering from disappointments. A second study investigated the theory that undue focus on the differences between present and future biases affective forecasts. “Defocusing” that induced low-level construals of the future reduced the extremeness of affective forecasts but a higher-level construal did not. We conclude that a focusing effect may bias affective forecasts. (shrink)
The idea of the spherical world, poised in space, and encircled at different distances by the celestial bodies, was introduced by the early Greek cosmologists. With some modifications, it is still our Western world-picture. It differs fundamentally from that of other cultures, which all accept, in one version or another, the idea of a flat earth with the dome of the celestial vault above it. The Greek conception, however, entails the problem of falling. How to account for the earth's stability? (...) Why is it that the earth does not fall? This anxious question has already bothered the Presocratics. Aristotle provided the solution that was satisfying for many hundred of years. Falling, according to Aristotle, is not the problem, but the answer, as the earth, consisting of the heaviest of the elements, finds its natural place in the centre of the spherical universe. For the same reason the earth itself, according to Aristotle, has to be spherical. Thus, his main line of argumentation was what we now would call 'metaphysical'. Recently, some scholars have argued that the early Greek idea of a spherical earth was developed as a protoscientifie hypothesis, based on empirical reasoning and observation. In this article, we show this to be an example of the 'anachronistic fallacy' that seriously obscures our understanding of the ancient Greek philosophers. Aristotle's conception held for two millennia, until the work of Copernicus, Kepler, and Thomas Digges overthrew it. Consequently, Newton had to cope with the fear of falling again — a fear that still haunts our modern world-picture and that was brilliantly articulated by Blaise Pascal, in his Pensées. (shrink)
This study offers a comprehensive summary and critical discussion of Alice Crary’s Beyond Moral Judgment. While generally sympathetic to her goal of defending the sort of expansive vision of the moral previously championed by Cora Diamond and Iris Murdoch, concerns are raised regarding the potential for her account to provide a satisfactory treatment of both “wide” objectivity and moral disagreement. Drawing on the work of Jonathan Lear and Jonathan Dancy, I suggest possible routes by which her position could be (...) expanded and possibly strengthened. (shrink)
Moralists hold that art criticism can and should take stock of moral considerations. Though moralists disagree over the proper scope of ethical art criticism, they are unified in their acceptance of the consistency of valence thesis: when an artwork fares poorly from the moral point of view, and this fact is art critically relevant, then it is thereby worse qua artwork. In this paper, I argue that a commitment to moralism, however strong, is unattractive because it requires that we radically (...) revise our art critical practices in contexts where revision seems ill advised. I will consider two such cases, Pushkinâs Eugene Onegin and Balthusâ Alice. When we further reflect on our actual art critical practices in cases like these, we find that we do not have an unfailing commitment to the consistency of valence thesis. That is, some artworks are (artistically) good because they are (morally) bad. (shrink)
The author proposes the development of systems learning guidebooks to accompany famous children's classic books. Children's classic books can make excellent bases for children's learning guidebooks on systems thinking and global ecology, because they are fun to read and well known worldwide. If such learning guidebooks are properly designed with humor and entertaining aspects, they could stimulate children to learn more about systems thinking. Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is chosen as a pilot case for developing such a (...) children's guidebook. The systems learning guidebook that accompanies Alice's Wonderland shall be entitled Alice in Systems Wonderland and will help its readers look at the Alice's Wonderland story with a systems perspective. (shrink)
Two laboratories which offered the new career of scientific work to women at the beginning of the twentieth century were the Biometric Laboratory and the Galton Eugenics Laboratory at University College London. The scientific careers of two women, Dr. Alice Lee and Dr. Ethel Elderton , are examined. Intellectual and economic factors involved in the choice of a career in eugenics are described, together with some aspects of the relationship between eugenics and feminism.
As the world watched the Fukushima reactors spew incalculable quantities of radionuclides into the sea and air and wondered what effect this would have on our health and that of generations to come, the warnings of Dr. Alice Stewart about low-dose radiation risk assumed a terrible timeliness. As industry, governments, and the media attempted to quiet the alarms, assuring us that radioactive releases will dilute and disperse and become too miniscule to matter, the reassurances of Sir Richard Doll, foremost (...) among Stewart's detractors, also became relevant. It is clear, as proponents and opponents of nuclear energy thrash it out, that there is not much more scientific consensus about the hazards of low-dose radiation .. (shrink)
Alice Gonzi’s Zarathustra a Parigi analyzes the complex reception of Nietzsche’s work in French culture between 1877 and 1930. In the first chapter, she shows how French academic philosophy, generally of neo-Kantian orientation, and the Wagnerian circles in Paris in this period did not consider Nietzsche a canonical philosopher, but rather stigmatized his thought and minimized its importance. As early as 1891, Téodor de Wyzewa, in his F. Nietzsche, le dernier metaphysician, praised Nietzsche as a writer while criticizing him (...) as a radical nihilist and pessimist. Although authors such as Daniel Halévy and Fernand Gregh treated Nietzsche as a philosopher of health and joy as well as a promoter of optimism and amor .. (shrink)
This article offers an analysis of Alice Walker's novel The Temple of My Familiar. It critiques the claim that humans' ability to use language, regarded in this article as equivalent to one sense of the word representation, marks the essential difference of humans from animals. The argument has two stages. The first claims that the novel offers a way to bridge this supposed fundamental difference in order that representation, in a second sense of speaking or advocating for animals, can (...) effectively occur. Importantly, the context of this is Walker's anti-oppressive politics of race and gender. It analyzes the portrayal of characters who understand their lives, the past, and their relationships with nonhuman animals by creating myths and stories, rather than via conventional written history. The second stage of the argument shows that this essentially creative understanding of worldviews other than the "norm" of western culture transcends the distance that language is said to insinuate between humans and animals. Creative, imaginative understanding allows humans to get close to animals."Can one speak of the animal? Can one approach the animal?". (shrink)
In this original and insightful new work, Alice Crary proposes that we see human beings and animals as creatures that are “inside ethics,” which is to say that they possess “characteristics that are simultaneously empirically discoverable and morally loaded”. This view rejects what Crary sees as the dominant paradigm in moral philosophy, wherein empirical observations about human beings and animals are viewed as morally neutral and shorn of any evaluative characteristics. Her view has implications for a range of topics (...) in moral philosophy and bioethics, including debates about disability, moral status, moral individualism, animal ethics, and animal mindedness. Here, I’ll focus primarily on summarizing... (shrink)
According to Gilles Deleuze, the underground world of Alice in Wonderland has been strongly associated with animality and embodiment. Thus the need for Alice's eventual climb to the surface and her discovery that everything linguistic happens at that border. Yet, strangely, in spite of the claim that Alice disavows false depth and returns to the surface, it seems that it is precisely in the depths that she finally wakes from her sleepy, stupified surface state and investigates the (...) deep structures, the rules of logic. In this investigation, Alice questions many formal structures, such as causality, identity, reference and the rules of replacement. She discovers that Wonderland does not generate consequential conduct; in fact, it generates no conduct whatsoever! In other words, when it comes to consequences, Wonderland may not be all that wonderful. Yet, we do not live in Wonderland and therefore, our actions have consequences. The question this poses is, why organise language so as to escape causal relations and why choose the little girl as emblematic of this organisation? (shrink)
Eh bien ! Tu es quoi toi, dit le Pigeon ? Je vois bien que tu essaies de me raconter des histoires ! Je. Je suis une petite fille, dit Alice, pas très sûre d'elle car tous les changements qu'elle avait subis ce jour-là lui revenaient à l'esprit. En voilà une bonne, vraiment ! dit le Pigeon d'un ton plus que dédaigneux. Les Aventures d'Alice au Pays des merveilles. En juin 1992 s'est tenu à Amsterdam, dans les deux (...) universités, le premier colloque international sur les jeunes filles.. (shrink)
Alice Walker’s The Color Purple dramatizes African American women’s plight through the experience of a black girl, Celie, caught in the turmoil of the patriarchal system of her community. Leaning on the epistolary form and also choosing to address the black woman’s oppression first within the black community itself, the author detaches herself from the mainstream African American literary tradition to create a personal style. One of the characteristic traits of the novel is language as a communicative tool in (...) the characters’ interrelation. In the narrative, this tool is mostly used to oppress the female protagonists, demonstrating thus its violent aspect. But sometimes, even though very rarely in the novel, it helps the oppressed subject to claim a voice. Finally, the epistolary form serves to create more emotion in the readers and consequently produces more reaction in them. (shrink)
continent. 1.4 (2011): 230—233. A word about the quotation marks. People ask about them, in the beginning; in the process of giving themselves up to reading the poem, they become comfortable with them, without necessarily thinking precisely about why they’re there. But they’re there, mostly to measure the poem. The phrases they enclose are poetic feet. If I had simply left white spaces between the phrases, the phrases would be read too fast for my musical intention. The quotation marks make (...) the reader slow down and silently articulate—not slur over mentally—the phrases at the pace, and with the stresses, I intend. They also distance the narrative form myself. I am not Alette. Finally they may remind the reader that each phrase is a thing said by a voice: this is not a thought, or a record of thought process, this is a story, told.(1) We read (reread) the poems that keep the discourse with ourselves going. —Wallace Stevens We have to break open words or sentences, too, and find what’s uttered in them. —Gilles Deleuze “The Descent of Alette” “is an allegorical poem” “in four books” “first published” “in 1992” “by Alice Notley.” “In the Descent of Alette,” “the double quotation mark” “is wrapped around” “words, phrases, sometimes whole sentences, and utilized as bones for structure and tonality.” “The winged” “dbl quotation” “like angels or devils” “descending from elsewhere” “function as” “poetic feet.” “Distance” “in the text through the use of dbl quotes,” “according to Notley,” “was a way to distance” “her self” “from the narrative.” I know someone who tattooed double quotes on her shoulder blades. In other words, the body is quotable. To be able to say that one is quotable. A body filled with other’s sayings. I never asked her what for, what is the double quote tattoo for and why on the shoulder blades? I prefer my own interpretation that keeps shifting every time I see her. First words of every poem in every book: Book One One ... On ... A ... There ... I ... We ... An ... A ... A ... I ... At ... A ... When ... When ... There ... I ... In ... At ... I ... Once ... A ... A ... In ... A ... A ... Two ... I ... I ... Eyeball ... In ... I... A ... I ... I ... On ... I ... There ... What ... As ... As Book Two I ... When ... I ... I ... As ... I ... I ... There ... I ... There ... I ... A ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I ... I Book Three The ... Presently ... I ... I’m ... I ... We ... What ... My ... I ... Who ... But ... Lay ... My ... I ... The ... Your ... The ... I ... It’s ... As ... The ... Talon’s ... When ... We ... I ... Slowly ... I ... I ... The ... How ... The Book Four I ... I ... You ... The ... Now ... She ... The ... There ... As ... Then ... The ... All ... Let’s I ... You ... The ... Thus ... The ... I ... The ... I ... There ... Have ... The ... As ... The Defamiliar Object “Poetry is a defamiliarized language, whose formations, so far from being simply formations of meaning, are aesthetic structures...”(2) “The same can be” “irresponsibly associated” “with the use of punctuation.” “The dbl quotation as a measure” “of poetic feet” “is treated as such” “because the author” “injects artfulness into it.” “The dbl quote is an object—” “a joystick” “to control breadth” “(of breath.)” “To de-familiarize” “said sign” “is also to” “impart the sensation of [it] as [it is] perceived and not as they are known.”(3) “The dbl quote” “nests previous words, phrasings and sayings.” “How many have come and gone” “through the doorway of this punctuation sign.” “There are also air quotes and virtual quotes.” “There is emphasis and there’s irony.” “It would be aggravating” “or interesting” “to watch a reading of” “The Descent of Alette” “with someone” “raising and curling” “fingers” “bent out of shape” “in what could be used as” “peace signs.” “I am trying to avoid” “scare quotes.” “I looked up” “what they are” “and supposedly they arose” “in the early 20th century.” “The scare quote” “is a mark around a word or phrase to indicate that it doesn’t signify conventional or literal meaning.” “This isn’t how Notley” “intended to use them” “in The Descent of Alette.” “The characters, places, and things” “signify nothing” “beyond” “their literal meaning” “ within the allegory .” “I’d like to stress” “within the allegory;” “that’s why its” “italicized.” “It is told through” “the main character/voice of” “Alette.” “The author reminds us she is not Alette.” “The author marvelously found a way” “to distance” “her self” “from the narrative.” “This was attempted” “by tonal and intimate” “affect of the dbl quote” “used as poetic feet.” “Its as though” “punctuation in this regard” “becomes a magical toy.” “Arguably, punctuation” “(as perceived)” “undergoes a kind of” “ defamiliar ” “make-over.” “The text” gently forces the reader” “to slow down,” “read slowly.” “At some point” “one begins to sense” “lines of text” “moving on its own.” “Broken words, phrases, and sentences” “shuttling left to right” “like a subway” “that stops” “from station to station;” “open quote to end quote.” Double Quote Occupied “There are two worlds; one above ground” “and one underground.” “The world above ground is where,” “the tyrant” “with a capital t” “lives.” “(The “T” gets tangled in the claws of the dbl quote.)” “Alette becomes an owl and kills him.” “In the last book the tyrant dies.” “ “...the tyrant” “a man in charge of” “the fact” “that we were” “below the ground” “endlessly riding” “our trains, never surfacing” “A man who” “would make you pay” “so much” “to leave the subway” “that you don’t” “ever ask” “how much it is” “It is, in effect,” “all of you & more” “Most of which you already” “pay to live below” “But he would literally” “take your soul” “Which is what you are” “below the ground” “Your soul” “your soul rides” “this subway” “I saw” “on the subway a” “world of souls” ”(4) “New York;” “the city of cities” “and its subways—” “worlds underground,” “above ground,” “& above the above ground.” “Skyscrapers,” “Wall Street,” “old money,” “new money,” “and falling further down a cleavage;” “the middle class” “slipping away.” “Contemporary artist ” “Ligorano Reece” “recently made” “a sculpture of ice ” “a block of ice” “carved to read” “middle class” “(in all upper case letters)” “and let it melt” “naturally” “for however long—” “hours,” “days.” “It didn’t take very long to melt.” A global uprise of mass demonstrations; a cacophony of bodies on the street, in parks and universities, on City Hall lawns, coastal ports, neighborhoods, etc., and for what? The reasons are endless and finite. Not a single body is unaffected by the movement even when not “occupying.” “Occupiers” “stormed into a Sotheby’s auction” “protesting” “via human microphone” “that the CEO takes home” “about” “six thousand dollars” “a day.” “(The a/Art market” “is not a reflection” “of a desire” “for a/Art” “but a reflection” “of a desire” “for money” “confused with a/Art.)” What could it mean to occupy that which has been written or said? Someone with double quotes tattooed on both shoulders attempts to reclaim the sign; re-invent it privately-publicly since the body is always split between both spheres. A genre of hide-and-seek; the speaking and silent body which can never mean what it says even while it so desires to mean something. To nest (and hold hostage) someone in double quotes is an act of violence; a gesture of displacement where one is arrested, dislocated, and scrutinized under a distant gaze. “The air quote” “also known as” “finger quote or ersatz quote” “supposedly” “harks back to” “1927.” “The brevity of this gesture” “ as something invisible” “like virtual money or credit” “doesn’t really exist” “though it take up space;” “its the ghostliest of all punctuation signs” “and one that requires the presence and appearance of a body.” “ “she made a form” “in her mind” “an imaginary” “form” “to settle” “in her arms where” “the baby” “had been” “We saw her fiery arms” “cradle air” “She cradled air...” ”(5) “The air” “gets occupied” “by one or two hands” “with thumb, forefinger, and middle finger” “which alternately could be used” “to shoot rubber bullets,” “pepper spray,” “tear gas.” “How three fingers” “could be responsible for so much:” “satire, sarcasm, irony” “and ultimately” “bruises, blood, death.” (“The violence of the dbl quote is to eagerly to place oneself inside a tornado.)” “The violence of this” “embodied punctuation mark” “stems from a discordance with others.” “Is the name, word, or phrase” “placed in dbl quotes” “heroic” “ or brave?” “An act of displacement;” “must there always be” “bright or negative lights—” “a leaderless act” “to inhabit, to occupy” “space removed” “from normative use.” “Of course” “I’m also wondering” “what it means to re-occupy” “public/private space—the street, neighborhood or page” “policed” “by laws, limits, and” “to some extent” “punctuation.” Echo, Mirror “There are first, second, and third voices interwoven.” “ “Braid of voices,”(6) ” “Some lines read as internal thoughts,” “dialogues,” “and scene descriptions,” “all of which make up the allegory.” “It seems appropriate” “for the word” “allegory” “to nest in dbl quotes” “for perhaps it might be” “a gesture to echo on and on” “eternally referencing” “whatever came before.” I notice the first tooth of the double quote, when paying too close attention, gets caught in the hook of the “f”. I space bar to untangle them; the f does not resist the closed bite of “deaf” and I resist to know what it could mean, because it could doubly mean nothing. “ “He looked” “so familiar” “to me...”(7) ” “The second-person” “echoes in one of two directions:” “further into” “or farther from” “me.” “Its as though” “the second-person amplifies” “or else the opposite” “in which he,” “who looks so familiar,” “retreats further” “like stars in a telescope.” “The dbl quote” “has this kind of affect” “concerning distance and dimension” “as also illusory” “as something twice removed” “and unreal” “in a similar way” “movie stars are unreal and far away.” “ “I entered” “a car” “in which I seemed” “to see double” “Each person I” “looked at seemed” “spread out” “as if doubled” “Gradually” “I perceived that” “each person” “was surrounded by a ghostly” “second image” “was encased in it” “& each” / “of those images,” “those encasings,” “was exactly the same” “each was in fact” “the tyrant...” ”(8) A daydream of a mirror-less world while staring through window blinds; a palm tree behind. It was dark with nothing there. A world with no mirrors “in my mind,” though my mind could only reflect what it knew: a palm tree. Naturally then, palm trees multiplied; a world of palm trees reflected the daydream with no mirror in sight. “The mirror” “(prior to obsidian manufacturing ca. 6000 B.C)” “was wherever water” “could be found.” “Its interesting” “mirrors have been around” “before humans—its funny” “animals and humans” “get born into” “a world of mirrors,” “therefore, simulation” “is always already” “a given—” “a sparkly consequence to be born with a dbl.” NOTES 1. Notley, Alice. “Author’s Note” in The Descent of Alette (New York, 1996) 2. Bruns, Gerald L. “ From Intransitive Speech to the Universe of Discourse” in Modern Poetry And The Idea of Language (New Haven & London, 1974), p.75 3. Ibid. p.77 4. Notley, Alice. The Descent of Alette (New York, 1996). p.3 5. Ibid. p.10 6. Ibid i. p.9 7. Ibid ii. p.16 8. Ibid iii. p.12. (shrink)
This is the obituary of Alice Thorner, an American scholar-specialist of the social history of India, who spent most of her career in France. She first worked with her husband, Daniel Thorner, who briefly taught in Pennsylvania before being expelled from the USA by McCarthy. They lived in India from 1952 to 1960, where they worked on Land and Labor. They settled in Paris in 1960 when Daniel was appointed to the EPHE 6th section where he taught the economic (...) history of India up to his death, and became a member of the Centre of Indian Studies created by Louis Dumont. Alice, who travelled to India every year, continued her own research on gender studies, on working-class women, and on the town of Bombay. This paper, written by a younger colleague and friend, uses personal anecdotes to sketch Alice’s career; it also lists her principal publications. (shrink)
Dans un format éditorial accessible à tous (127 pages + index et bibliographie) et pour une somme modique (9 euros), Alice Krieg-Planque propose un ouvrage dont la lecture apparaît utile à tous ceux qui étudient les discours et leur circulation dans l’espace public, réfléchissent sur le rapport entre langage et société, s’interrogent sur le cadre interdisciplinaire de l’analyse du discours aujourd’hui. S’appuyant sur sa thèse remarquée Emergence et emplois de la formule « purification ethniqu..
L'ouvrage d'Alice Pechriggl, chercheure au département de philosophie à l'Université de Vienne, constitue la version remaniée d'une thèse de doctorat menée sous la direction de Cornelius Castoriadis à l'École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales et soutenue avec Pierre Vidal-Naquet. Par une approche méthodique, A. Pechriggl montre, en se référant aux écrits de C. Castoriadis sur le social-historique en tant que puissance de positions imaginaires, la manière dont s'effectue la transfo..
Past, present, and future are reversed in the reader's encounter with the illustrations selected by Gertrude Stein for her Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas.1 After the table of contents there is a table of illustrations that encourages everyone to look at the pictures before they begin reading. During that initial examination, the illustrations forecast what is to be discovered in the text. Expectations are aroused by photographs showing Gertrude Stein in front of the atelier door, rooms hung with paintings, (...) Gertrude and Alice in front of Saint Mark's Cathedral, and both with a car in front of Joffre's birthplace. It is natural—although, as it turns out, not altogether correct—to assume that the accumulation of paintings will be explained, that the life lived within the rooms will be fully depicted, and that conventional narrative explanation will be provided to account for the presence of Gertrude and Alice together in such disparate settings as Venice and the French marshal's home. · 1. For useful comments on several pictures as well as evidence that "even the book's sixteen photographs were carefully placed in the first edition," see Richard Bridgman, Gertrude Stein in Pieces , p. 219. Paul K. Alkon, professor of English at the University of Minnesota, is author of Samuel Johnson and Moral Discipline. Among his recent articles are "Boswellian Time" and "The Historical Development of the Concept of Time." He is writing a book about time in Defoe's fiction. See also: "The Mind, The Body, and Gertrude Stein" by Catharine R. Stimpson in Vol. 3, No. 3; "Gertrude Stein, the Cone Sisters, and the Puzzle of Female Friendship" by Carolyn Burke in Vol. 8, No. 3. (shrink)
My argument is that faced with such reversal of stereotypical female roles, the culture relies on both the institution of the law and the custom of storytelling to reassure itself about boundary confusions—between guilt and innocence, man and woman, seductress and seducer, fact and fiction. The Thaw trial, however, shows that the law itself could not resolve any of those ambiguities, a predicament which, I will argue, Twain entertains and creates in his own fictional courtroom but flees from in his (...) response to the actual trial.My argument thus depends upon establishing particular dialogue between these two cases of seduction, for neither Twain’s nor the journalistic accounts alone tell the story that the two together do. Both cases speak in common to two aspects of fictionality. One is a mode of social differentiation, the sexual and legal categories essential to both cases, but whose actual application was, for different reasons in each, momentarily suspended. It was impossible to decide, for example, whether Evelyn Thaw or Alice or Twain himself, for that matter, should be classified as victim or victimizer, as playing the active or passive role in their respective narratives. The temporary suspension of these categories, I will argue, does not invalidate them or brand them as “fictive,” but rather reveals them as culturally constructed and culturally applied, in Twain’s words “fictions of law and custom” . In both cases, the response to this moment when cultural categories cannot be definitively applied is a process of storytelling—a second aspect of fictionality—that attempts to construct coherent narratives about those suspended “fictions of law and custom.” Although Twain’s “Alice” case opens in 1877, not until it connects with the Thaw trial in 1907 does the full story, as I have just briefly outlined it, emerge. It is precisely that double story that this esay will tell: the story of how Twain’s personal compulsions met up with his culture’s in the act of reporting, representing, interpreting, and finally making its own events mean. Susan Gillman is assistant professor of literature and American studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. This essay is part of a forthcoming book, Dark Twins: Imposture and Identity in Mark Twain’s America. (shrink)
This is the obituary of Alice Thorner, an American scholar-specialist of the social history of India, who spent most of her career in France. She first worked with her husband, Daniel Thorner (1915-74), who briefly taught in Pennsylvania before being expelled from the USA by McCarthy. They lived in India from 1952 to 1960, where they worked on Land and Labor. They settled in Paris in 1960 when Daniel was appointed to the EPHE 6th section (now EHESS) where he (...) taught the economic (especially agrarian) history of India up to his death, and became a member of the Centre of Indian Studies created by Louis Dumont. Alice, who travelled to India every year, continued her own research on gender studies, on working-class women, and on the town of Bombay. This paper, written by a younger colleague and friend, uses personal anecdotes to sketch Alice’s career; it also lists her principal publications. (shrink)
How does a Muslim jurist think the law and how, accordingly, he judges a fact? Using Alice in Wonderland as hermeneutical device to explore the logic of fiqh, this article identifies a divergence between Western and Islamic legal thinking in the application of abduction as key form of inference in the law of Islam. In particular, looking at the fact/law relation in symbolic terms, the article highlights how, while a dichotomy between fact and law characterizes Western legal thinking, fiqh (...) upholds a connection between the “real” and the “right”, where the effort in understanding sharī‘ah postulates the actualization of the “rule” in God’s creation. Thus, if sharī‘ahpre-scribes the Law, not only is the rule discovered through the sources, but the right has to be justified through a verdict de-scribing the fact, for the law to be validly stated for the given situation. In this sense, abduction as explanatory “hypothesis” and “inference to the best explanation” of sharī‘ah provides an account for the probabilistic nature of fiqh, its ramification through verdicts, as well as for the epistemic and narrative function of the tradition as core aspects of the logic of Islamic law. At the same time, doubts can be raised about the compatibility between this logic and the deductive logic of modern state law, as a sub-product of Western legal thinking. (shrink)