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Profile: Ben Almassi (Governors State University, College of Lake County)
  1. The Consequences of Individual Consumption: A Defence of Threshold Arguments for Vegetarianism and Consumer Ethics.Ben Almassi - 2011 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 28 (4):396-411.
    As a moral foundation for vegetarianism and other consumer choices, act consequentialism can be appealing. When we justify our consumer and dietary choices this way, however, we face the problem that our individual actions rarely actually precipitate more just agricultural and economic practices. This threshold or individual impotence problem engaged by consequentialist vegetarians and their critics extends to morally motivated consumer decision-making more generally, anywhere a lag persists between individual moral actions taken and systemic moral progress made. Regan and others (...)
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  2.  81
    Climate Change, Epistemic Trust, and Expert Trustworthiness.Ben Almassi - 2012 - Ethics and the Environment 17 (2):29-49.
    The evidence most of us have for our beliefs on global climate change, the extent of human contribution to it, and appropriate anticipatory and mitigating actions turns crucially on epistemic trust. We extend trust or distrust to many varied others: scientists performing original research, intergovernmental agencies and those reviewing research, think tanks offering critique and advocating skepticism, journalists transmitting and interpreting claims, even social systems of modern science such as peer-reviewed publication and grant allocation. Our personal experiences and assessments of (...)
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  3.  92
    Experts, Evidence, and Epistemic Independence.Ben Almassi - 2007 - Spontaneous Generations 1 (1):58-66.
    Throughout his work on the rationality of epistemic dependence, John Hardwig makes the striking observation that he believes many things for which he possesses no evidence (1985, 335; 1991, 693; 1994, 83). While he could imagine collecting for himself the relevant evidence for some of his beliefs, the vastness of the world and constraints of time and individual intellect thwart his ability to gather for himself the evidence for all his beliefs. So for many things he believes what others tell (...)
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  4. Trust in Expert Testimony: Eddington's 1919 Eclipse Expedition and the British Response to General Relativity.Ben Almassi - 2009 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 40 (1):57-67.
  5.  15
    Comments on Tim Kenyon's "Oral History and the Epistemology of Testimony".Ben Almassi - 2015 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective.
  6.  92
    Climate Change and the Ethics of Individual Emissions.Ben Almassi - 2012 - Perspectives International Postgraduate Journal of Philosophy 4 (1):4-21.
    Walter Sinnott-Armstrong argues, on the relationship between individual emissions and climate change, that “we cannot claim to know that it is morally wrong to drive a gas guzzler just for fun” or engage in other inessential emissions-producing individual activities. His concern is not uncertainty about the phenomenon of climate change, nor about human contribution to it. Rather, on Sinnott-Armstrong’s analysis the claim of individual moral responsibility for emissions must be grounded in a defensible moral principle, yet no principle withstands scrutiny. (...)
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  7.  60
    Conflicting Expert Testimony and the Search for Gravitational Waves.Ben Almassi - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (5):570-584.
    How can we make informed decisions about whom to trust given expert disagreement? Can experts on both sides be reasonable in holding conflicting views? Epistemologists have engaged the issue of reasonable expert disagreement generally; here I consider a particular expert dispute in physics, given conflicting accounts from Harry Collins and Allan Franklin, over Joseph Weber’s alleged detection of gravitational waves. Finding common ground between Collins and Franklin, I offer a characterization of the gravity wave dispute as both social and evidential. (...)
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  8.  85
    Disability, Functional Diversity, and Trans/Feminism.Ben Almassi - 2010 - International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics 3 (2):126-149.
    Feminist approaches to bioethics have the striking ability to usefully disrupt conversations otherwise in danger of calcifying into immovable opposing camps. Take, for instance, debates between theorists in disability studies and bioethicists who often take two different approaches to understanding disability. On one side are those such as Buchanan, Brock, Daniels, and Wikler (2000) who seek to locate the apparent functional deficiency of disability in biologically abnormal bodies. Let us call this a normal functioning approach to understanding disability. On the (...)
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  9.  5
    Climate Change and the Need for Intergenerational Reparative Justice.Ben Almassi - 2017 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 30 (2):199-212.
    Environmental philosophies concerning our obligations to each other and the natural world too rarely address the aftermath of environmental injustice. Ideally we would never do each other wrong; given that we do, as fallible and imperfect agents, we require non-ideal ethical guidance. Margaret Walker’s work on moral repair and Annette Baier’s work on cross-generational communality together provide useful hermeneutical tools for understanding and enacting meaningful responses to intergenerational injustice, and in particular, for anthropogenic climate change. By blending Baier’s cross-generational approach (...)
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  10.  39
    Trust and the Duty of Organ Donation.Ben Almassi - 2014 - Bioethics 28 (6):275-283.
    Several recent publications in biomedical ethics argue that organ donation is generally morally obligatory and failure to do so is morally indefensible. Arguments for this moral conclusion tend to be of two kinds: arguments from fairness and arguments from easy rescue. While I agree that many of us have a duty to donate, in this article I criticize these arguments for a general duty of organ donation and their application to organ procurement policy. My concern is that these arguments neglect (...)
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  11.  47
    A Defense of Ignorance: Its Value for Knowers and Roles in Feminist and Social Epistemologies. By Cynthia Townley. Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2011. [REVIEW]Ben Almassi - 2013 - Hypatia 28 (1):215-217.
  12.  16
    Feminist Reclamations of Normative Masculinity: On Democratic Manhood, Feminist Masculinity, and Allyship Practices.Ben Almassi - 2015 - Feminist Philosophy Quarterly 1 (2).
    ‘Feminist masculinity’ might seem like a contradiction in terms. One might have assumed that we can embrace feminism or embrace masculinity, but not both. If traditional masculinity is contrary to feminist values, a pressing query for feminist men is whether repudiation of traditional masculinity should move one to reject normative masculinity entirely, or to reframe and reclaim it instead. bell hooks and Michael Kimmel each counsel against discarding manhood and masculinity. hooks envisions feminist masculinity as an alternative to patriarchal dominance, (...)
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  13. Climate Change and the Ethics of Individual Emissions: A Response to Sinnott-Armstrong.Ben Almassi - 2012 - Perspectives: International Postgraduate Journal of Philosophy 4 (1):4-21.
    Walter Sinnott-Armstrong argues, on the relationship between individual emissions and climate change, that “we cannot claim to know that it is morally wrong to drive a gas guzzler just for fun” or engage in other inessential emissions-producing individual activities. His concern is not uncertainty about the phenomenon of climate change, nor about human contribution to it. Rather, on Sinnott-Armstrong’s analysis the claim of individual moral responsibility for emissions must be grounded in a defensible moral principle, yet no principle withstands scrutiny. (...)
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  14.  18
    Medical Ghostwriting and Informed Consent.Ben Almassi - 2014 - Bioethics 28 (9):491-499.
    Ghostwriting in its various forms has received critical scrutiny from medical ethicists, journal editors, and science studies scholars trying to explain where ghostwriting goes wrong and ascertain how to counter it. Recent analyses have characterized ghostwriting as plagiarism or fraud, and have urged that it be deterred through stricter compliance with journal submission requirements, conflict of interest disclosures, author-institutional censure, legal remedies, and journals' refusal to publish commercially sponsored articles. As a supplement to such efforts, this paper offers a critical (...)
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  15.  2
    Toxic Funding? Conflicts of Interest and Their Epistemological Significance.Ben Almassi - 2017 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 34 (2):206-220.
    Conflict of interest disclosure has become a routine requirement in communication of scientific information. Its advocates defend COI disclosure as a sensible middle path between the extremes of categorical prohibition on for-profit research and anything-goes acceptance of research regardless of origin. To the extent that COI information is meant to aid reviewer and reader evaluation of research, COIs must be epistemologically significant. While some commentators treat COIs as always relevant to research credibility, others liken the demand for disclosure to an (...)
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  16.  6
    Toxic Funding? Conflicts of Interest and Their Epistemological Significance.Ben Almassi - 2016 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 33 (3).
    Conflict of interest disclosure has become a routine requirement in communication of scientific information. Its advocates defend COI disclosure as a sensible middle path between the extremes of categorical prohibition on for-profit research and anything-goes acceptance of research regardless of origin. To the extent that COI information is meant to aid reviewer and reader evaluation of research, COIs must be epistemologically significant. While some commentators treat COIs as always relevant to research credibility, others liken the demand for disclosure to an (...)
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  17.  16
    Evan Selinger and Robert Crease, Eds., The Philosophy of Expertise:The Philosophy of Expertise. [REVIEW]Ben Almassi - 2007 - Ethics 117 (2):377-381.
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  18.  4
    Trust in Expert Testimony: Eddington's 1919 Eclipse Expedition and the British Response to General Relativity.Ben Almassi - 2009 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 40 (1):57-67.
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  19. Disability, Functional Diversity, and Trans/Feminism.Ben Almassi - 2010 - Ijfab: International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics 3 (2):126-149.
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  20. Expertise In Agriculture.Ben Almassi - 2014 - Encyclopedia of Food and Agricultural Ethics.
  21. Experts in the Climate Change Debate.Ben Almassi - 2016 - In David Coady, Kimberley Brownlee & Kasper Lipper-Rasmussen (eds.), Blackwell Companion to Applied Philosophy. Blackwell.
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