Qualitative reasoning about space and time - a reasoning at the human level - promises to become a fundamental aspect of future systems that will accompany us in daily activity. The aim of Spatial and Temporal Reasoning is to give a picture of current research in this area focusing on both representational and computational issues. The picture emphasizes some major lines of development in this multifaceted, constantly growing area. The material in the book also shows some common ground and a (...) novel combination of spatial and temporal aspects of qualitative reasoning. Part I presents the overall scene. The chapter by Laure Vieu is on the state of the art in spatial representation and reasoning, and that by Alfonso Gerevini gives a similar survey on research in temporal reasoning. The specific contributions to these areas are then grouped in the two main parts. In Part II, Roberto Casati and Achille Varzi examine the ontological status of spatial entities; Anthony Cohn, Brandon Bennett, John Gooday, and Nicholas Gotts present a detailed theory of reasoning with qualitative relations about regions; Andrew Frank discusses the spatial needs of geographical information systems; and Annette Herskovits focuses on the linguistic expression of spatial relations. In Part III, James Allen and George Ferguson describe an interval temporal logic for the representation of actions and events; Drew McDermott presents an efficient way of predicting the outcome of plan execution; and Erik Sandewall introduces a semantics based on transitions for assessing theories of action and change. In Part IV, Antony Galton's chapter stands clearly between the two areas of space and time and outlines the main coordinates of an integrated approach. (shrink)
Eugenics can be defined as the use of science applied to the qualitative and quantitative improvement of the human genome. The subject was initiated by Francis Galton with considerable support from Charles Darwin in the latter half of the 19th century. Its scope has increased enormously since the recent revolution in molecular genetics. Genetic files can be easily obtained for individuals either antenatally or at birth; somatic gene therapy has been introduced for some rare inborn errors of metabolism; and (...) gene manipulation of human germ-line cells will no doubt occur in the near future to generate organs for transplantation. The past history of eugenics has been appalling, with gross abuses in the USA between 1931 and 1945 when compulsory sterilization was practised; and in Germany between 1933 and 1945 when mass extermination and compulsory sterilization were performed. To prevent such abuses in the future statutory bodies, such as a genetics commission, should be established to provide guidance and rules of conduct for use of the new information and technologies as applied to the human genome. (shrink)
Sport often seems to teeter on the edge, on one side of the entertainment industry, on the other of cheating violent aggression: from a make-believe simulacrum of serious play to a nasty chemically enhanced descent into a Hobbesian state of nature. Such perversions lend credibility to reductive views of sport itself as a metonymic feature of capitalism. But that sport as entertainment means fixing it to produce exciting outcomes and amplifying capacities to superhuman proportions, while sport as aggression means treating (...) rules as mere obstacles to brute dominance, shows how far we in fact are from these abysses, even in the days of the Coca Cola/Nike Olympics, Vinny Jones and cricket sledging. In this essay, I try to delineate through history— from Homer to … Gomer?—a common culture of sport and sportsmanship that, with its excesses and perversions, continues to operate as one, albeit complex, ideal of human excellence. (shrink)
I first met Norman Malcolm in the fall of 1963 when, as a terrified sophomore, I took his course in Free Will and Determinism at Cornell. I believe I had already heard that Malcolm was a figure of almost legendary proportions.
[Richard Glauser] Shaftesbury's theory of aesthetic experience is based on his conception of a natural disposition to apprehend beauty, a real 'form' of things. I examine the implications of the disposition's naturalness. I argue that the disposition is not an extra faculty or a sixth sense, and attempt to situate Shaftesbury's position on this issue between those of Locke and Hutcheson. I argue that the natural disposition is to be perfected in many different ways in order to be exercised in (...) the perception of the different degrees of beauty within Shaftesbury's hierarchy. This leads to the conclusion that the exercise of the disposition depends, from case to case, on many different cognitive and affective conditions, that are realised by the collaborative functionings of our ordinary faculties. Essential to Shaftesbury's conception of aesthetic experience is a disinterested, contemplative love, that causes (or contains) what we may call a 'disinterested pleasure', but also an interested pleasure. I argue that, within any given aesthetic experience, the role of the disinterested pleasure is secondary to that of the disinterested love. However, an important function of the disinterested pleasure is that, in combination with the interested pleasure, it leads one to aspire to pass from the aesthetic experience of lower degrees of beauty to the experience of higher ones in the hierarchy. /// [Anthony Savile] (1) If Shaftesbury is to be seen as the doyen of modern aesthetics, his most valuable legacy to us may not so much be his viewing aesthetic response as a sui generis disinterested delight as his insistence on its turning 'wholly on [experience of] what is exterior and foreign to ourselves'. Not that we cannot experience ourselves, or what is our own, as a source of such admiration. Rather our responses, favourable or no, are improperly grounded in any essentially reflexive, or first-personal, ways of taking what engages us. The suggestion is tested against the case of Narcissus. (2) Glauser interestingly emphasizes Shaftesbury's neo-Platonic conception of a hierarchy of aesthetic experience that culminates in the joyful contemplation of God. That hierarchy must be something that is less unitary and systematic than Shaftesbury himself had supposed, even when his emphasis on the tie between aesthetic pleasure and contemplative experience is allowed to extend beyond perception and to encompass episodes of thought itself. (shrink)
Madness is a subject that ought to interest philosophers; but they have had surprisingly little to say about it. What they have said, although often interesting and important, has failed to penetrate to the properly philosophical centre of the topic. They have concerned themselves with its causes and effects, with its social and ethical implications, but they have said little that is useful or definitive about what it is in itself. Preoccupied with its accidents, they have failed to engage with (...) its essence. (shrink)
J. Anthony Blair is a prominent international figure in argumentation studies. He is among the originators of informal logic, an author of textbooks on the informal logic approach to argument analysis and evaluation and on critical thinking, and a founder and editor of the journal Informal Logic. Blair is widely recognized among the leaders in the field for contributing formative ideas to the argumentation literature of the last few decades. This selection of key works provides insights into the history (...) of the field of argumentation theory and various related disciplines. It illuminates the central debates and presents core ideas in four main areas: Critical Thinking, Informal Logic, Argument Theory and Logic, Dialectic and Rhetoric. (shrink)
Introduction Although Anthony Giddens describes his approach as “social” rather than “critical” theory, and although there is little obvious Frankfurt School influence in his writing, he believes “social theory is inevitably critical theory.”1 While he might aim at such a critical position, it is far from obvious that he succeeds. On the contrary, his later writings have become an apology for the status quo.2 Failing to consider his prejudices, perhaps because he thinks critique is inevitable, Giddens has increasingly vindicated (...) predominant relations of domination. He celebrates the rise of post-traditional individuals, who have the freedom of choice to create and…. (shrink)
An important work in the debate between materialists and dualists, the public correspondence between Anthony Collins and Samuel Clarke provided the framework for arguments over consciousness and personal identity in eighteenth-century Britain. In Clarke's view, mind and consciousness are so unified that they cannot be compounded into wholes or divided into parts, so mind and consciousness must be distinct from matter. Collins, by contrast, was a perceptive advocate of a materialist account of mind, who defended the possibility that thinking (...) and consciousness are emergent properties of the brain. Appendices include philosophical writings that influenced, and responded to, the correspondence. (shrink)
Whether any property is internal to a particular object may be taken to depend upon the way in which the object is described. Thus it is not an internal property of Scott to have been the author of Waverley, neither is it an internal property of the author of Ivanhoe. But what of the author of Waverley? Is the proposition that the author of Waverley composed Waverley necessarily true? On one interpretation of it it surely is. Even so, one can (...) attach a sense to saying that the person who was in fact the author of Waverley might not have been so. All that is needed for this is that he be capable of being otherwise identified. (shrink)
The following interview of Mark William Westmoreland with Anthony Paul Smith–well-known scholar and translator of François Laruelle –considers both implications and extensions of Laruelle's non-philosophy for contemporary thought. Smith has helped bring about a surge of interest in Laruelle due to his many translations of his texts as well as being the author or co-editor of several books on Laruelle. Discussed are in particular the difficulties and joys of translating and the usefulness of Laruelle's thought for Smith's own work, (...) especially in environmental and animal studies. Also considered are some themes of non-philosophy, the adaptability of Laruelle's thought for various disciplines, as well as new paths for Laruelle studies –new, unforeseen landscapes and uses of non-philosophy –that explore social phenomena such as race, racism, sexism, victim a.o. (shrink)
Rousseau seldom gets a mention as a philosopher in the conventional histories; if he appears at all it is in connection with that strange and rather suspect discipline ‘political philosophy’. Even then there is a tendency to look upon him as an unsystematic thinker, as a ‘ philosophy ’ rather than as a genuine philosopher. His ideas are held to be interesting, but the connections between them are thought to be emotional rather than logical. Again, Émile is read by students (...) of education, but not by those studying philosophy. This is both because the ‘philosophy of education’ is thought not to be of great importance and again because of Rousseau's lack of logical rigour. Now it is true that Rousseau himself was an emotional figure, and from reading his Confessions it is easy to get the idea that there is no point in looking for interesting philosophical points in his works. (shrink)
While philosophers of mind have been arguing over the status of mental representations in cognitive science, cognitive scientists have been quietly engaged in studying perception, action, and cognition without explaining them in terms of mental representation. In this book, Anthony Chemero describes this nonrepresentational approach, puts it in historical and conceptual context, and applies it to traditional problems in the philosophy of mind. Radical embodied cognitive science is a direct descendant of the American naturalist psychology of William James and (...) John Dewey, and follows them in viewing perception and cognition to be understandable only in terms of action in the environment. Chemero argues that cognition should be described in terms of agent-environment dynamics rather than in terms of computation and representation. After outlining this orientation to cognition, Chemero proposes a methodology: dynamical systems theory, which would explain things dynamically and without reference to representation. He also advances a background theory: Gibsonian ecological psychology, "shored up" and clarified. Chemero then looks at some traditional philosophical problems through the lens of radical embodied cognitive science and concludes that the comparative ease with which it resolves these problems, combined with its empirical promise, makes this approach to cognitive science a rewarding one. "Jerry Fodor is my favorite philosopher," Chemero writes in his preface, adding, "I think that Jerry Fodor is wrong about nearly everything." With this book, Chemero explains nonrepresentational, dynamical, ecological cognitive science as clearly and as rigorously as Jerry Fodor explained computational cognitive science in his classic work The Language of Thought. (shrink)
Graham N. Stanton, University of Cambridge ?Anthony Thiselton is one of our leading theologians, equally at home in both New Testament studies and in philosophical and theological hermeneutics, and a collection of this major articles will ...
Much of recent ethics has been thoroughly formalistic in character. In the first place it has confined itself to the investigation of the general logical properties of møral discourse and has largely ignored the broad psychological context of motives and purposes in which that kind of discourse has its life. Secondly, it has sought to distinguish the field of discourse that it takes as its subject-matter in a formalistic way, in terms of such properties as its universalisability, its autonomy and (...) its overridingness, without reference to the concrete and specific human interests with which moral discourse is connected and which it might serve to promote. (shrink)
A discussion on antiquity with Anthony A. Long, one of the most distinguished scholars in the field of ancient philosophy, would be engaging in any case. All the more so, since his two recently published works, Greek Models of Mind and Self and How to be Free: An Ancient Guide to the Stoic Life, provide the opportunity to revisit key issues of ancient philosophy. The former is a lively and challenging work that starts with the Homeric notions of selfhood, (...) and leads the reader all the way through classical and Hellenistic philosophical psychology; the latter is a profound analysis of the Stoic ethics that focuses in particular on its foundation and principles, followed by Long’s re-worked translation of Epictetus’ Encheiridion and carefully selected parts of his Discourses. Anthony Long kindly accepted the invitation to discuss several issues that are in the core of scholarly concern, sharing interpretations and thoughts that originate from his long acquaintance with the ancient literary tradition. (shrink)
It is appropriate that a lecture in a series on ‘Philosophy and Practice’ should open by considering Bentham's ideas on imprisonment. For Bentham, incontestably a philosopher, was equally incontestably a practical reformer. This, indeed, is a received idea among philosophers; that is to say, most philosophers know that Bentham designed ‘a model prison of novel design’, but few have actually considered the design, its implications or its effects. Most are content, like Warnock, with observing that the panopticon plan was formally (...) rejected, before passing on to the abstraction of Bentham's felicific calculus, his notion of utility, and his ideas about the foundations of law. Yet, strange as it may seem, the underlying idea of the panopticon has never been completely abandoned. One aspect of the idea pervades penal thinking, even while prison practice is still influenced by Bentham's practical proposals; moreover, the panoptic ideal has taken root far beyond the walls of actual prisons. Here is philosophy in practice, and yet, in many ways, practically and intellectually a failure. (shrink)
A prevalent narrative locates the discovery of the statistical phenomenon of regression to the mean in the work of Francis Galton. It is claimed that after 1885, Galton came to explain the fact that offspring deviated less from the mean value of the population than their parents did as a population-level statistical phenomenon and not as the result of the processes of inheritance. Arguing against this claim, we show that Galton did not explain regression towards mediocrity statistically, (...) and did not give up on his ideas regarding an inheritance process that caused offspring to revert to the mean. While the common narrative focuses almost exclusively on Galton’s statistics, our arguments emphasize the anthropological and biological questions that Galton addressed. Galton used regression towards mediocrity to support the claim that some biological types were more stable than others and hence were resistant to evolutionary change. This view had implications concerning both natural selection and eugenics. The statistical explanation attributed to Galton appeared later, during the biometrician-mutationist debate in the early 1900s. It was in the context of this debate and specifically by the biometricians, that the development of the statistical explanation was originally attributed to Galton. (shrink)
Situating the subject -- Hermeneutics and spech-act theory -- Hermeneutics, semantics, and conceptual grammar -- Lexicography, exegesis, and reception history -- Parables, narrative-worlds, and reader-response theories -- Philosophy, language, theology, and postermodernity -- Hermeneutics, history, and theology.
Emotions are Janus-faced: their focus may switch from how a person is feeling deep inside her, to the busy world of actions, words, or gestures whose perception currently affects her. The intimate relation between the ‘inside’ and the ‘outside’ seems to call for a redrawing of the traditional distinction of mental states between those that can look out to the world, and those that are, supposedly, irredeemably blind.
ABSTRACT. Probability and statistics play an important role in contemporary -philosophy of causality. They are viewed as glasses through which we can see or detect causal relations. However, they may sometimes act as blinding glasses, as I will argue in this paper. In the 19th century, Francis Galton tried to statistically analyze hereditary phenomena. Although he was a far better statistician than Gregor Mendel, his biological theory turned out to be less fruitful. This was no sheer accident. His knowledge (...) of statistics generated two explananda (unknown to Mendel) which in turn generated constraints for any theory of heredity. These constraints misguided Galtons search for the causal mechanism of inheritance. This is not just. an interesting case for philosophers and historians of ·science. Notwithstanding the progress made by statitics, Galtons problem is still relevant today. In the final section, I briefly explore the implications for statistical techniques such as structural equation modelling. (shrink)
Anthony Everett gives a philosophical defence of the common-sense view that there are no such things as fictional people, places, and things. He argues that our talk and thought about such fictional objects takes place within the scope of a pretense, and that we gain little but lose much by accepting fictional realism.
Galton greeted Darwin's theory of pangenesis with enthusiasm, and tried to test the assumption that the hereditary particles circulate in the blood by transfusion experiments on rabbits. The failure of these experiments led him to reject this assumption, and in the 1870s he developed an alternative theory of heredity, which incorporated those parts of Darwin's theory that did not involve the transportation of hereditary particles throughout the system. He supposed that the fertilized ovum contains a large number of hereditary (...) elements, which he collectively called the "stirp," a few of which are patent, developing into particular cell types, while the rest remain latent; the latent elements can be transmitted to the next generation, while the patent elements, with rare exceptions, cannot since they have developed into cells. The problem with this theory is that it does not explain the similarity between parent and child unless there is a high correlation between latent and patent elements. Galton probably came to realize this problem during his subsequent statistical work on heredity, and he quietly dropped the idea that patent elements are not transmitted in Natural Inheritance (1889). Galton thought that brothers and sisters had identical stirps, and he attributed differences between them to variability in the choice of patent elements from the stirp, that is to say to developmental variability. He attributed the likeness of monozygotic twins to the similarity of their developmental environment. Galton's twin method was to track the life history changes of twins to see whether twins who were similar at birth diverged in dissimilar environments or whether twins who were dissimilar at birth converged in similar environments. It is quite different from the modern twin method of comparing the similarities between monozygotic and dizygotic twins, on the assumption that monozygotic twins are genetically identical whereas dizygotic twins are not. It has been argued that Galton foreshadowed Weismann's theory of the continuity of the germ-plasm, but this is only true in a weak sense. They both believed that the inheritance of acquired characters was either rare or impossible, but Galton did not forestall the essential part of Weismann's theory, that the germ-plasm of the zygote is doubled, with one part being reserved for the formation of the germ-cells. (shrink)