Artificial Intelligence as a discipline has gotten bogged down in subproblems of intelligence. These subproblems are the result of applying reductionist methods to the goal of creating a complete artificial thinking mind. In Brooks (1987) 1 have argued that these methods will lead us to solving irrelevant problems; interesting as intellectual puzzles, but useless in the long run for creating an artificial being.
Psychoanalytic literary criticism has always been something of an embarrassment. One resists labeling as a “psychoanalytic critic” because the kind of criticism evoked by the term mostly deserves the bad name it largely has made for itself. Thus I have been worrying about the status of some of my own uses of psychoanalysis in the study of narrative, in my attempt to find dynamic models that might move us beyond the static formalism of structuralist and semiotic narratology. And in general, (...) I think we need to worry about the legitimacy and force that psychoanalysis may claim when imported into the study of literary texts. If versions of psychoanalytic criticism have been with us at least since 1908, when Freud published his essay on “Creative Writers and Day-dreaming,” and if the enterprise has recently been renewed in subtle ways by post-structuralist versions of reading, a malaise persists, a sense that whatever the promises of their union, literature and psychoanalysis remain mismatched bedfellows—or perhaps I should say playmates.The first problem, and the most basic, may be that psychoanalysis in literary study has over and over again mistaken the object of analysis, with the result that whatever insights it has produced tell us precious little about the structure and rhetoric of literary texts. Traditional psychoanalytic criticism tends to fall into three general categories, depending on the object of analysis: the author, the reader, or the fictive persons of the text. The first of these constituted the classical locus of psychoanalytic interest. It is now apparently the most discredited, though also perhaps the most difficult to extirpate, since if the disappearance of the author has been repeatedly announced, authorial mutants ceaselessly reappear, as, for instance, in Harold Bloom’s psychomachia of literary history. Like the author, the fictive character has been deconstructed into an effect of textual codes, a kind of thematic mirage, and the psychoanalytic study of the putative unconscious of characters in fiction has also fallen into disrepute. Here again, however, the impulse resurfaces, for instance in some of the moves of a feminist criticism that needs to show how the represented female psyche refuses and problematizes the dominant concepts of male psychological doctrine. Feminist criticism has in fact largely contributed to a new variant of the psychoanalytic study of fictive characters, a variant one might label the “situational-thematic”: studies of Oedipal triangles in fiction, their permutations and evolution, of the roles of mothers and daughters, of situations of nurture and bonding, and so forth. It is work often full of interest, but nonetheless methodologically disquieting in its use of Freudian analytic tools in a wholly thematic way, as if the identification and labeling of human relations in a psychoanalytic vocabulary were the task of criticism. The third traditional field of psychoanalytic literary study, the reader, continues to flourish in ever-renewed versions, since the role of the reader in the creation of textual meaning is very much on our minds at present, and since the psychoanalytic study of readers’ responses willingly brackets the impossible notion of author in favor of the acceptable and also verifiable notion of reader. The psychoanalytic study of the reader may concern real readers or the reader as psychological everyman . But like the other traditional psychoanalytic approaches, it displaces the object of analysis from the text to some person, some other psychodynamic structure—a displacement I wish to avoid since, as I hope to make clear as I go along, I think psychoanalytic criticism can and should be textual and rhetorical. Peter Brooks is the Tripp Professor of the Humanities at Yale University, where he is also director of the Whitney Humanities Center and chairman of the French department. His most recent book is Reading for the Plot: Design and Intention in Narrative, which has recently been reissued in paperback. His work in progress concerns psychoanalysis and story-telling. (shrink)
We have previously built a small IKg ([Angle 89] and [Brooks 89]) six legged walking robot named Genghis. It was remarkably successful as a testbed to develop walking and learning algorithms. It encouraged us to build a more fully engineered robot with higher performance. We are building two copies of the robot, both 1.6Kg in mass. Their generic name is Attila. Attila has 24 actuators and over 150 sensors, all connected via a local network (the I2C bus) to 11 (...) onboard computers. (shrink)
A major preoccupation of that novel [Zola’s Nana] is the undressing of the courtesan Nana. One could even say that a major dynamic of the novel is stripping Nana, and stripping away at her, making per progressively expose the secrets of this golden body that has Paris in thrall. The first chapter of the novel provides, quite literally, a mise-en-scène for Nana’s body, in the operetta La Blonde Vénus. When she comes on stage in the third act, a shiver passes (...) over the audience, for, we are told, she is nude. Yet, we quickly discover, not quite nude: she is covered by a filmy shift under which her splendid body lets itself be glimpsed: se devinait. “It was Venus born from the waves, having only her hair as a veil.”2 The denuding of nana progresses in chapter 5 when Comte Muffat and the Prince make their way backstage to her dressing room . They surprise her naked to the waist, and she then covers herself with a bodice, which only half hides her breasts. Despite the repeated references to nana as nude, it is only in chapter 7, at the very midpoint of the novel, that Nana is finally completely naked. In this scene, she undresses before her mirror while Comte Muffat watches, especially looking at her looking at herself. Thus she is fully unveiled, frontally in the mirror, and from the backside in Muffat’s direct view. And yet, as we shall see in a moment, even the completely naked woman’s body bears a troubling veil. 2. Émile Zola, Nana , p. 47; hereafter abbreviated N. I wish to thank Helen Chillman, Librarian of the Slides and Photography Collection, Art and Architecture Library, Yale University, for her help in assembling the illustrations accompanying this essay.Peter Brooks is Tripp Professor of Humanities and Director of the Whitney Humanities Center at Yale University. The author of The Melodramatic Imagination and Reading for the Plot , he is currently working on a study of narrative and the body, tentatively called “Storied Bodies.”. (shrink)
From Syrian asylum seekers to super-rich foreign investors, immigration is one of the most controversial issues facing Britain today. Politicians kick the subject from one election to the next with energetic but ineffectual promises to ‘crack down’, while newspaper editors plaster it across front pages. -/- But few know the truth behind the headlines; indeed, the almost daily changes to our complex immigration laws pile up so quickly that even the officials in charge struggle to keep up. -/- In this (...) clear, concise guide, Thom Brooks, one of the UK’s leading experts on British citizenship – and a newly initiated British citizen himself – deftly navigates the perennially thorny path, exploding myths and exposing absurdities along the way. Ranging from how to test for ‘Britishness’ to how to tackle EU ‘free movement’, Becoming British explores how UK immigration really works – and sparks a long-overdue debate about how it should work. -/- Combining expert analysis with a blistering critique of the failings of successive governments, this is the definitive guide to one of the most hotly disputed issues in the UK today. Wherever you stand on the immigration debate, Brooks’s wryly observed account is the essential roadmap. (shrink)
Current Controversies in Political Philosophy brings together an international team of leading philosophers to explore and debate four key and dynamic issues in the field in an accessible way. Should we all be cosmopolitans? – Gillian Brock and Cara Nine Are rights important? – Rowan Cruft and Sonu Bedi Is sexual objectification wrong and, if so, why? – Lina Papadaki and Scott Anderson What to do about climate change? – Alexa Zellentin and Thom Brooks These questions are the focus (...) of intense debate. Preliminary chapter descriptions, bibliographies following each chapter, and annotated guides to supplemental readings help provide clearer and richer snapshots of active controversy for all readers. (shrink)
Widely hailed as one of the most significant works in modern political philosophy, John Rawls's _Political Liberalism_ defended a powerful vision of society that respects reasonable ways of life, both religious and secular. These core values have never been more critical as anxiety grows over political and religious difference and new restrictions are placed on peaceful protest and individual expression. This anthology of original essays suggests new, groundbreaking applications of Rawls's work in multiple disciplines and contexts. Thom Brooks, Martha (...) Nussbaum, Onora O'Neill, Paul Weithman, Jeremy Waldron, and Frank Michelman explore political liberalism's relevance to the challenges of multiculturalism, the relationship between the state and religion, the struggle for political legitimacy, and the capabilities approach. Extending Rawls's progressive thought to the fields of law, economics, and public reason, this book helps advance the project of a free society that thrives despite disagreements over religious and moral views. (shrink)
I suppose I should be grateful to Charles Bernheimer for setting me back on the path of righteousness from which I appear to have so grievously strayed. But I think Bernheimer and I are in deep disagreement about the purposes of literary criticism, and this may make me, in his perspective, a hopeless case. Bernheimer reads my article, “Storied Bodies, or Nana at Last Unveil’d,” as intending “to empower women by putting their sexuality at the generative origin of story” . (...) He ascribes to me the motive of “offering feminists a gift” . He even suggests, in a particularly offensive move: “This offer, I would guess, provides the generative energy for Brooks’s critical story” . I can do without such attributions of motive. My intent, far less ambitious, was to describe some attitudes toward the nude female body that I found in novels and paintings of the later nineteenth century. I don’t believe that criticism need be harnessed to the “empowerment” of anyone in particular, nor that it need denounce what Bernheimer identifies as “patriarchal oppression” , “misogynist strategies” , and the “hegemonic privileges” of the male gaze everywhere they are to be found . Does criticism really need to burden itself with this litany of clichés? Do they tell us anything new? Peter Brooks is Tripp Professor of Humanities and director of the Whitney Humanities Center, Yale University. He is nearing completion of a book tentatively entitled Storied Bodies. (shrink)
Artificial intelligence research has foundered on the issue of representation. When intelligence is approached in an incremental manner, with strict reliance on interfacing to the real world through perception and action, reliance on representation disappears. In this paper we outline our approach to incrementally building complete intelligent Creatures. The fundamental decomposition of the intelligent system is not into independent information processing units which must interface with each other via representations. Instead, the intelligent system is decomposed into independent and parallel activity (...) producers which all interface directly to the world through perception and action, rather than interface to each other particularly much. The notions of central and peripheral systems evaporateeverything is both central and peripheral. Based on these principles we have built a very successful series of mobile robots which operate without supervision as Creatures in standard office environments. (shrink)
The majority of North American corporations awakened to the need for their own ethical guidelines during the late 1970s and early 1980s, even though modern corporations are subject to a surprising multiplicity of external codes of ethics or conduct. This paper provides an understanding of both internal and external codes through a discussion of the factors behind the development of the codes, an analysis of internal codes and an identification of problems with them.
This article argues that even if we grant that murderers may deserve death in principle, retributivists should still oppose capital punishment. The reason? Our inability to know with certainty whether or not individuals possess the necessary level of desert. In large part due to advances in science, we can only be sure that no matter how well the trial is administered or how many appeals are allowed or how many years we let elapse, we will continue to execute innocent persons (...) for as long as we legalize capital punishment. Thus, on grounds of desert, this article argues that retributivists should oppose capital punishment. (shrink)
Executives, professionals, educators and labour leaders are requesting an update on corporate ethical trends. This article presents an examination of why the interest in corporate ethics is growing both in society and in corporations. An analysis follows of how corporations are responding to this interest, and of how that response might be enhanced through improved second-generation codes of ethical performance.
This article examines the pressures and players that have shaped business ethics in Canadian corporations, and reports on the status of Canadian corporate social performance in 1995. Business in Canada has not been subject, up to 1996, to a powerful national institutional framework such as the US Securities and Exchange Commission and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Consequently, business ethics in Canada have developed primarily in response to broader socio-political and socio-economic factors than in the US, and will probably continue (...) to do so. Interestingly, the issues, policies and practices developed in Canada may provide insights for US corporations as they respond to broadened pressures. Business ethics in Canada, on the other hand, will benefit increasingly from the US experience as pressures grow for national regulation and statutes governing corruption. (shrink)
Current trends toward increased pace, more complex substance and lower tolerance of error have caused the financial marketplace to rely more heavily on the integrity of financial data and, therefore, of those who prepare the financial statements. At the same time, these trends place higher challenges before professional accountants and it is essential that they have excellent ethical guidance to live up to modern expectations. However, in view of the current codes of conduct, an accountant may not have a clear (...) understanding of what priority of interests to satisfy, who can be consulted for advice, to whom to report misdeeds, what protection is offered a right-doer and what sanction will be forthcoming for doing wrong. Possible solutions are offered to these problems in ways that ought to strengthen the accounting profession and prevent unscrupulous companies from taking advantage of both members of the profession and the unsuspecting public. To provide the appropriate quality of service to society in the future, the Canadian accounting profession should offer its members the improved guidance and enhanced mechanisms for confidential consultation, assistance and protection outlined herein. (shrink)
Qualitative states are no threat to physicalism. They have a causal effect upon the world in virtue of their qualitative nature. This effect is exploited in biological mechanisms for representing the world. Representation requires differential responsiveness to different perceived properties of things. Qualia are taken to be tagged properties of internal representation models. These properties are properties for-the-organism. Such for-the-organism properties are to be expected in beings which perceive the world and interact with it intelligently. Consciousness presents a problem for (...) science. Human beings are conscious of the world and of themselves. In so far as science has the ambition of explaining everything consciousness is another unexplained phenomenon. However some claim that it is distinctive and different in kind from other problems which science hopes to solve using methods which have been successful up until now. It may indeed be so different that we have to adopt a dualistic metaphysics and accept that there is more to the world than physics knows. In this paper I intend to outline how the physicalist should fight back. (shrink)
Hegel's legacy is particularly controversial, not least in legal theory. He has been classified as a proponent of either natural law, legal positivism, the historical school, pre-Marxism, postmodern critical theory, and even transcendental legal theory. To what degree has Hegel actually influenced contemporary legal theorists? This review article looks at Michael Salter's collection Hegel and Law. I look at articles on civil disobedience, contract law, feminism, and punishment. I conclude noting similarities between Hegel's legal theory and that of Ronald Dworkin. (...) I also criticize the volume's emphasis on Hegel's postmodern credentials, all of which I doubt. (shrink)
This paper reviews the experience of 174 of Canada's largest 1500 public and private sector corporations which have begun to incorporate sustainable development management and reporting as part of their operations. Answers are provided to three main questions: Why have they implemented this initiative? What progress has been made in terms of sustainability audit practice – frequency, focus, organization of the audit team –, internal communication, and external reporting? And where has, and will the leadership for the sustainability audit movement (...) come from as why? Sustainable development auditing and reporting in Canada is voluntary. Practice varies from an elementary level to a sophisticated integrated assessment of social, environmental, labour, sourcing and trading, and governance issues. The depth of practice and experience in this area depends on several factors, including: corporate commitment, the degree of public perception of sector-wide environmental issues, exposure to legal liability, and the extent of dialogue and transparency associated with the auditing process. Differences of opinion about accounting and auditing standards as well as whether all, or parts of, audits should be independent are explored. The sources of data used for this paper include the EthicScan Corporate 1500 DataBase, The Corporate Ethics Monitor, various reports prepared by EthicScan Canada, and the consultancies of both authors. (shrink)
This article offers a justification for the continued use of jury trials. I shall critically examine the ability of juries to render just verdicts, judicial impartiality, and judicial transparency. My contention is that the judicial system that best satisfies these values is most preferable. Of course, these three values are not the only factors relevant for consideration. Empirical evidence demonstrates that juries foster both democratic participation and public legitimation of legal decisions regarding the most serious cases. Nevertheless, juries are costly (...) and, therefore, economically less efficient than competing modes of trial. I do not argue that all human beings possess an inalienable legal right to be tried by a jury. However, it is my hope that this analysis will make clear what we might gain or lose when we propose jury reforms. (shrink)
Secondary qualities have peculiarities which are thought to threaten physicalism. It is argued that these peculiarities are only to be expected in a physicalist universe in virtue of the essential characteristics of a representing device. Any device representing the world such as a camera will have depictional qualities. Secondary qualities are a subset of these.
boundaries. It is impossible to do good science without having an appreciation for the problems and concepts in the other levels of abstraction (at least in the direction from biology towards physics), but there are whole sets of tools, methods of analysis, theories and explanations within each discipline which do not cross those boundaries.
The purpose of this essay is to critically appraise J. Angelo Corlett's recent interpretation of Kant's theory of punishment as well as his rejection of Hegel's penology. In taking Kant to be a retributivist at a primary level and a proponent of deterrence at a secondary level, I believe Corlett has inappropriately wed together Kant's distinction between moral and positive law. Moreover, his support of Kant on these grounds is misguided as it is instead Hegel who holds such a distinction. (...) Finally, I attempt to refute the almost timeless retributivist rejection of deterrence-based theories of punishment on the grounds that the latter somehow would condone in some cases the punishment of innocent persons. These individuals almost always demand that no innocent person be punished as a rule of the highest order. (shrink)
Proponents of two axioms of biological evolutionary theory have attempted to find justification by reference to nonequilibrium thermodynamics. One states that biological systems and their evolutionary diversification are physically improbable states and transitions, resulting from a selective process; the other asserts that there is an historically constrained inherent directionality in evolutionary dynamics, independent of natural selection, which exerts a self-organizing influence. The first, the Axiom of Improbability, is shown to be nonhistorical and thus, for a theory of change through time, (...) acausal. Its perception of the improbability of living states is at least partially an artifact of closed system thinking. The second, the Axiom of Historically Determined Inherent Directionality, is supported evidentially and has an explicit historical component. Historically constrained dynamic populations are inherently nonequilibrium systems. It is argued that living, evolving systems, when considered to be historically constrained nonequilibrium systems, do not appear improbable at all. Thus, the two axioms are not compatible. Instead, the Axiom of Improbability is considered to result from an unjustified attempt to extend the contingent proximal actions of natural selection into the area of historical, causal explanations. It is thus denied axiomatic status, and the effects of natural selection are subsumed as an additional level of constraint in an evolutionary theory derived from the Axiom of Historically Determined Inherent Directionality. (shrink)
In both Great Britain and the United States there has been a growing debate about the modern acceptability of jury nullification. Properly understood, juries do not have any constitutional right to ignore the law, but they do have the power to do so nevertheless. Juries that nullify may be motivated by a variety of concerns: too harsh sentences, improper government action, racism, etc. In this article, I shall attempt to defend jury nullification on a number of grounds. First, I discuss (...) the use of general verdicts and reject their replacement in criminal trials by special verdicts. Second, I examine verdicts based upon mistakes and racial prejudice, turning my attention to perverse verdicts and the question of whether or not juries are guilty of legislating when nullifying the law. Finally, I look at the problem of the awarding of excessive damages by juries. My goal will be to provide a sound theoretical defence of the practice of jury nullification. (shrink)
Plato justifies the concentration and exercise of power for persons endowed with expertise in political governance. This article argues that this justification takes two distinctly different sets of arguments. The first is what I shall call his 'ideal political philosophy' described primarily in the Republic as rule by philosopher-kings wielding absolute authority over their subjects. Their authority stems solely from their comprehension of justice, from which they make political judgements on behalf of their city-state. I call the second set of (...) arguments Plato's 'practical political philosophy' underlying his later thought, where absolute rule by philosopher-kings is undermined by the impure character of all political knowledge. Whereas the complete comprehension of justice sanctions the absolute political power of those with this expertise, partial knowledge of justice disallows for such a large investment of power. Plato's practical political philosophy argues for a mixed theory of governance fusing the institutions of monarchy with democracy in the best practical city-state. Thus, Plato comes to realize the insurmountable difficulties of his ideal political thought, preferring a more practical political philosophy instead. (shrink)
Mahādeviyakka was a radical 12th century Karnataka saint of whom surprisingly little has been written. Considered the most poetic of the Virashaivas, her vacanas are characterized by their desperate searching for Shiva. I attempt to convey Mahādevi's epistemology and its struggle to 'know' Shiva, necessitating a lifetime of searching for him; offer an interpretation of the innate presence of iva in the world and its consequences for epistemology; and explore the sense of tragic love inherent in devotional searching for Shiva. (...) My primary goal is to offer a powerful and positive, yet critical, interpretation of Mahādevi's beautiful prose on her relationship with Shiva. (shrink)