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)
[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)
Food Deserts have recently beenidentified in the United Kingdom. They havebeen defined by Tessa Jowell, UK GovernmentHealth Minister, as an area ``where people donot have easy access to healthy, fresh foods,particularly if they are poor and have limitedmobility.'' The above definition is particularlyrelevant in Northern Ireland, where it isestimated that 32% of households do not haveeasy access to a car and it is recognized thatcertain groups in Northern Ireland are amongstthe poorest consumers in the United Kingdom.The phenomenon has been further (...) exacerbated bythe effect of large grocery retailers locatingon the periphery of towns and the subsequentdisplacement effect of independent retailers inthe town center. The resultant effect is suchthat disadvantaged consumers cannot accessfresh, quality, nutritious foods at anaffordable price. Preliminary researchindicates that certain consumer groups areexcluded from equitable shopping provision –possibly to the detriment of their healthstatus. Research methodology includes aconsumer questionnaire, consumer focus groups,interviews, and comparative shopping exercisesthat confirm an inability among vulnerableconsumer groups to achieve an affordable,healthy diet. This was further complicated bynon-car owners' and lower-income family unitsneeding to shop locally and more frequentlythan their higher-income, car-ownercounterparts. This was demonstrated with theuse of shopping diaries. Future research to beconducted includes a large-scale survey acrossNorthern Ireland to ascertain accessibility,availability, and affordability of qualityfresh foods and to distinguish the consumergroups who are most vulnerable. (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)
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)
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)
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.
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)
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.
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.
Moral Emotions builds upon the philosophical theory of persons begun in _Phenomenology and Mysticism _and marks a new stage of phenomenology. Author Anthony J. Steinbock finds personhood analyzing key emotions, called moral emotions. _Moral Emotions _offers a systematic account of the moral emotions, described here as pride, shame, and guilt as emotions of self-givenness; repentance, hope, and despair as emotions of possibility; and trusting, loving, and humility as emotions of otherness. The author argues these reveal basic structures of interpersonal (...) experience. By exhibiting their own kind of cognition and evidence, the moral emotions not only help to clarify the meaning of person, they reveal novel concepts of freedom, critique, and normativity. As such, they are able to engage our contemporary social imaginaries at the impasse of modernity and postmodernity. (shrink)
What is mind? This book attempts to give a philosophical answer to that question in language accessible to the layperson, but with a rigor acceptable to the specialist. Published on the centenary of the birth of Wittgenstein and the 40th anniversary of the publication of Gilbert Ryle 's classic The Concept of Mind, this work testifies to the influence of those thinkers on Kenny's own work in the philosophy of mind, and assembles Kenny's ideas on philosophical psychology into a systematic (...) whole. (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)
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 ...
This is not the first time the title ‘Art and Technology’ has been used, but to distinguish what I have to say from Walter Gropius's Bauhaus exhibition of 1923, I am subtitling my paper ‘an old tension’, where the architect spoke of ‘a new unity’. In a way, Gropius has been proved right; the structures of the future avoiding all romantic embellishment and whimsy, the cathedrals of socialism, the corporate planning of comprehensive Utopian designs have all gone up and some (...) come down. We have a mass media culture also largely made possible by technology. Corporatist architecture, whether statist ‘social housing’ or freemarket inspired, films, videos, modern recording and musical techniques are all due to technological advances made mostly this century. Only in a very puritanical sense could what has happened be thought of as inevitably bringing with it enslavement. All kinds of possibilities are now open to artists and architects, which would have been imaginable a few decades ago. No one is forced to use these possibilities in any specific way. (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)
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)
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)
This revised edition of Sir Anthony Kenny’s classic work on Wittgenstein contains a new introduction which covers developments in Wittgenstein scholarship since the book was first published. Widely praised for providing a lucid and historically informed account of Wittgenstein’s core philosophical concerns. Demonstrates the continuity between Wittgenstein’s early and later writings. Provides a persuasive argument for the unity of Wittgenstein’s thought. Kenny also assesses Wittgenstein’s influence in the latter part of the twentieth century.
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.
Anthony J. Lisska presents a new analysis of Thomas Aquinas's theory of perception. While much work has been undertaken on Aquinas's texts, little has been devoted principally to his theory of perception and less still on a discussion of inner sense. The thesis of intentionality serves as the philosophical backdrop of this analysis while incorporating insights from Brentano and from recent scholarship. The principal thrust is on the importance of inner sense, a much-overlooked area of Aquinas's philosophy of mind, (...) with special reference to the vis cogitativa. Approaching the texts of Aquinas from contemporary analytic philosophy, Lisska suggests a modest 'innate' or 'structured' interpretation for the role of this inner sense faculty. He argues that were it not for the vis cogitativa, Aquinas would be unable to account for an awareness of the principal ontological category in his metaphysics. (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)
Anthony Simon Laden explores the kind of reasoning we engage in when we live together: when we are responsive to others and neither commanding nor deferring to them. He argues for a new, social picture of the activity of reasoning, in which reasoning is a species of conversation--social, ongoing, and governed by a set of characteristic norms.
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)
Utilitarianism is the view according to which the only basic requirement of morality is to maximize net aggregate welfare. This position has implications for the ethics of creating and rearing children. Most discussions of these implications focus either on the ethics of procreation and in particular on how many and whom it is right to create, or on whether utilitarianism permits the kind of partiality that child rearing requires. Despite its importance to creating and raising children, there are, by contrast, (...) few sustained discussions of the implications of utilitarian views of welfare for the matter of what makes a child’s life go well. This paper attempts to remedy this deficiency. It has four sections. Section one discusses the purpose of a theory of welfare and its adequacy conditions. Section two evaluates what prominent utilitarian theories of welfare imply about what makes a child’s life go well. Section three provides a sketch of a view about what is prudentially valuable for children. Section four sums things up. (shrink)
Mitochondrial replacement techniques have the potential to allow prospective parents who are at risk of passing on debilitating or even life-threatening mitochondrial disorders to have healthy children to whom they are genetically related. Ethical concerns have however been raised about these techniques. This article focuses on one aspect of the ethical debate, the question of whether there is any moral difference between the two types of MRT proposed: Pronuclear Transfer and Maternal Spindle Transfer. It examines how questions of identity impact (...) on the ethical evaluation of each technique and argues that there is an important difference between the two. PNT, it is argued, is a form of therapy based on embryo modification while MST is, instead, an instance of selective reproduction. The article's main ethical conclusion is that, in some circumstances, there is a stronger obligation to use PNT than MST. (shrink)
This book is a discussion of some of Kierkegaard's central ideas, showing their relevance to contemporary debates in epistemology, ethics, and the philosophy of religion. Anthony Rudd's aim is not simply to expound Kierkegaard's ideas but to draw on them creatively in order to illuminate questions about the foundations of morality and the nature of personal identity, as discussed by analytical philosophers such as MacIntyre, Parfit, Williams, and Foot. Rudd seeks a way forward from the sterile conflict between the (...) view that morality and religion are based on objective reasoning and the view that they are merely expressions of subjective emotions. He argues that morality and religion must be understood in terms of the individual's search for a sense of meaning in his or her own life, but emphasizes that this does not imply that values are arbitrary or merely subjective. (shrink)
Exploring the first-person narratives of three figures from the Christian, Jewish, and Islamic mystical traditions—St. Teresa of Avila, Rabbi Dov Baer, and Rzbihn Baql—Anthony J. Steinbock provides a complete phenomenology of mysticism based in the Abrahamic religious traditions. He relates a broad range of religious experiences, or verticality, to philosophical problems of evidence, selfhood, and otherness. From this philosophical description of vertical experience, Steinbock develops a social and cultural critique in terms of idolatry—as pride, secularism, and fundamentalism—and suggests that (...) contemporary understandings of human experience must come from a fuller, more open view of religious experience. (shrink)
Contemporary biologists are not agreed on the question of whether there are any human races, despite the widespread scientific consensus on the underlying genetics. For most purposes, however, we can reasonably treat this issue as terminological. What most people in most cultures ordinarily believe about the significance of “racial” difference is quite remote, I think, from what the biologists are agreed on. Every reputable biologist will agree that human genetic variability between the populations of Africa or Europe or Asia is (...) not much greater than that within those populations; though how much greater depends, in part, on the measure of genetic variability the biologist chooses. If biologists want to make interracial difference seem relatively large, they can say that “the proportion of genic variation attributable to racial differences is … 9 – 11%.”1 If they want to make it seem small, they can say that, for two people who are both Caucasoid, the chances of difference in genetic constitution at one site on a given chromosome are currently estimated at about 14.3 percent, while for any two people taken at random from the human population, they are estimated at about 14.8 percent. The statistical facts about the distribution of variant characteristics in human populations and subpopulations are the same, whichever way the matter is expressed. Apart from the visible morphological characteristics of skin, hair, and bone, by which we are inclined to assign people to the broadest racial categories—black, white, yellow—there are few genetic characteristics to be found in the population of England that are not found in similar proportions in Zaire or in China; and few too which are found in Zaire but not in similar proportions in China or in England. All this, I repeat, is part of the consensus . A more familiar part of the consensus is that the differences between peoples in language, moral affections, aesthetic attitudes, or political ideology—those differences which most deeply affect us in our dealings with each other—are not biologically determined to any significant degree.[…]In this essay, I want to discuss the way in which W. E. B. Du Bois—who called his life story the “autobiography of a race concept”—came gradually, though never completely, to assimilate the unbiological nature of races. I have made these few prefatory remarks partly because it is my experience that the biological evidence about race is not sufficiently known and appreciated but also because they are important in discussing Du Bois. Throughout his life, Du Bois was concerned not just with the meaning of race but with the truth about it. We are more inclined at present, however, not to express our understanding of the intellectual development of people and cultures as a movement toward the truth; I shall sketch some of the reasons for this at the end of the essay. I will begin, therefore, by saying what I think the rough truth is about race, because, against the stream, I am disposed to argue that this struggle toward the truth is exactly what we find in the life of Du Bois, who can claim, in my view, to have thought longer, more engagedly, and more publicly about race than any other social theorist of our century. 1. Masatoshi Nei and Arun K. Roychoudhury, “Genetic Relationship and Evolution of Human Races,” Evolutionary Biology 14 : 11; all further references to this work, abbreviated “GR,” will be included in the text. Anthony Appiah is associate professor of philosophy, African studies, and Afro-American studies at Yale. He is the author of Assertion and Conditionals and For Truth in Semantics . In addition, he is at work on African Reflections: Essays in the Philosophy of Culture. (shrink)
Over the last few decades, a number of influential philosophers, psychologists and others have invoked the notion of narrative as having a central role to play in our thinking about ethics and personal identity. More recently, a backlash against these narrative theories has developed, exemplified in work by, for instance, Galen Strawson, Peter Lamarque and John Christman. This paper defends an approach to personal identity and ethics, influenced mainly by Alasdair MacIntyre and Charles Taylor, in which narrative plays a central (...) (though not a foundational) role. In sec I, I elucidate the concept of narrative that MacIntyre introduced in After Virtue and show why this is central to thinking about the identity of persons across time. In sec II, I consider and reject various objections to this narrative account of personal identity. I hope to show that some of the prominent criticisms of narrative theory simply don’t apply to this conception, properly understood. However, I don’t want to claim that the dispute over narrative is based purely on misunderstanding, One centrally important aspect of the dispute is a first-order ethical one about the extent to which we should seek for a unity based on narrative coherence in our lives, and in secs III and IV, I will offer a defence of Taylor’s claim that an ethical life must aspire to, and to some extent achieve, narrative unity. (shrink)