In this paper we propose and analyze a game-theoretic model of the epistemology of peer disagreement. In this model, the peers' rationality is evaluated in terms of their probability of ending the disagreement with a true belief. We find that different strategies---in particular, one based on the Steadfast View and one based on the Conciliatory View---are rational depending on the truth-sensitivity of the individuals involved in the disagreement. Interestingly, the Steadfast and the Conciliatory Views can even be rational simultaneously in (...) some circumstances. We tentatively provide some reasons to favor the Conciliatory View in such cases. We argue that the game-theoretic perspective is a fruitful one in this debate, and this fruitfulness has not been exhausted by the present paper. (shrink)
Some sceptics claim that in cases of peer disagreement, we ought to suspend judgment about the topic of discussion. In this paper, we argue that the sceptic’s conclusions are only correct in some scenarios. We show that the sceptic’s conclusion is built on two premises (the principle of evidential symmetry and the principle of evidentialism) and argue that both premises are incorrect. First, we show that although it is often rational to suspend judgment when an epistemic peer disagrees with you, (...) peer disagreements are not symmetrical. Next, we argue that even if one assumes that peer disagreements are symmetrical, it might still be rational to stick to one’s guns in the light of peer disagreement. (shrink)
Suspension and DisagreementSome sceptics claim that in cases of peer disagreement, we ought to suspend judgment about the topic of discussion. In this paper, we argue that the sceptic’s conclusions are only correct in some scenarios. We show that the sceptic’s conclusion is built on two premises and argue that both premises are incorrect. First, we show that although it is often rational to suspend judgment when an epistemic peer disagrees with you, peer disagreements are not symmetrical. Next, we argue (...) that even if one assumes that peer disagreements are symmetrical, it might still be rational to stick to one’s guns in the light of peer disagreement. (shrink)
Scientism, the view that only scientifically supported beliefs are epistemically justified, faces two influential problems: (1) scientism itself does not seem to be scientifically supported and hence self-referentially incoherent; and (2) scientism seems to dismiss many plausible ordinary beliefs as unjustified. In this paper, we show that both problems presuppose a needlessly narrow conception of science and that when scientism is based on a broader, more realistic conception of science neither problem arises. Furthermore, we argue that our variant of scientism (...) is still strong enough to have philosophical bite. (shrink)
Towards a moderate scientismScientism, the view that only scientifically supported beliefs are epistemically justified, faces two influential problems: scientism itself does not seem to be scientifically supported and hence self-referentially incoherent; and scientism seems to dismiss many plausible ordinary beliefs as unjustified. In this paper, we show that both problems presuppose a needlessly narrow conception of science and that when scientism is based on a broader, more realistic conception of science neither problem arises. Furthermore, we argue that our variant of (...) scientism is still strong enough to have philosophical bite. (shrink)
This article asks whether states have a right to close their borders because of their right to self-determination, as proposed recently by Christopher Wellman, Michael Walzer, and others. It asks the fundamental question whether self-determination can, in even its most unrestricted form, support the exclusion of immigrants. I argue that the answer is no. To show this, I construct three different ways in which one might use the idea of self-determination to justify immigration restrictions and show that each of these (...) arguments fails. My conclusion is that the nature and value of self-determination have to do with the conditions of genuine self-government, not membership of political society. Consequently, the demand for open borders is fully consistent with respect to self-determination. (shrink)
In this book van der Leeuw discusses the horizontal path to God and the vertical paths descending from God and ascending to Him. If God Himself appears, it is in a totally different manner, which results not in intelligible utterance, but in proclamation; and it is with this that theology has to deal." Originally published in 1986. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. (...) These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905. (shrink)
Negative polarity is one of the more elusive aspects of linguistics and a subject which has been gaining in importance in recent years. Written from within the well-defined theoretical framework of Generalized Quantifiers, the three main areas considered in this study are collocations, polarity items and multiple negations. In this mature piece of research, van der Wouden takes into account, not only semantic and syntactic considerations, but also to a large extent, pragmatic ones illustrating a wide array of linguistic approaches.
This work brings together Philip van der Eijk's previously published essays on the close connections that existed between medicine and philosophy throughout antiquity. Medical authors such as the Hippocratic writers, Diocles, Galen, Soranus and Caelius Aurelianus elaborated on philosophical methods such as causal explanation, definition and division and applied key concepts such as the notion of nature to their understanding of the human body. Similarly, philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle were highly valued for their contributions to medicine. This interaction (...) was particularly striking in the study of the human soul in its relation to the body, as illustrated by approaches to specific topics such as intellect, sleep and dreams, and diet and drugs. With a detailed introduction surveying the subject as a whole and an essay on Aristotle's treatment of sleep, this wide-ranging and accessible collection is essential reading for the student of ancient philosophy and science. (shrink)
In Anarchy, State, and Utopia, Robert Nozick contrasts entitlement theories of justice and “traditional” theories such as Rawls', utilitarianism or egalitarianism, and advocates the former against the latter. What exactly is an entitlement theory of justice? Nozick's book offers two distinct characterizations. On the one hand, he explicitly describes “the general outlines of the entitlement theory” as maintaining “that the holdings of a person are just if he is entitled to them by the principles of justice in acquisition and transfer, (...) or by the principle of rectification of injustice ”. On the other hand, his famous “Wilt Chamberlain” argument against alternative theories is first said to apply to “non-entitlement conceptions”, and later to any “end-state principle or distributional patterned principle of justice” — which amounts to an implicit characterization of an entitlement conception as a conception of justice which is neither end-state nor patterned. (shrink)
The contributions to this volume all deal with the crucial problem of change in the religious traditions of the ancient world. They range from broad overviews to detailed case-studies, discussing examples from Greek, Roman, Jewish, Christian and Manichaean literature.
An important discussion in contemporary ethics concerns the relevance of empirical research for ethics. Specifically, two crucial questions pertain, respectively, to the possibility of inferring normative statements from descriptive statements, and to the danger of a loss of normativity if normative statements should be based on empirical research. Here we take part in the debate and defend integrated empirical ethical research: research in which normative guidelines are established on the basis of empirical research and in which the guidelines are empirically (...) evaluated by focusing on observable consequences. We argue that in our concrete example normative statements are not derived from descriptive statements, but are developed within a process of reflection and dialogue that goes on within a specific praxis. Moreover, we show that the distinction in experience between the desirable and the undesirable precludes relativism. The normative guidelines so developed are both critical and normative: they help in choosing the right action and in evaluating that action. Finally, following Aristotle, we plead for a return to the view that morality and ethics are inherently related to one another, and for an acknowledgment of the fact that moral judgments have their origin in experience which is always related to historical and cultural circumstances. (shrink)
Human cognition is unique in the way in which it relies on combinatorial (or compositional) structures. Language provides ample evidence for the existence of combinatorial structures, but they can also be found in visual cognition. To understand the neural basis of human cognition, it is therefore essential to understand how combinatorial structures can be instantiated in neural terms. In his recent book on the foundations of language, Jackendoff described four fundamental problems for a neural instantiation of combinatorial structures: the massiveness (...) of the binding problem, the problem of 2, the problem of variables, and the transformation of combinatorial structures from working memory to long-term memory. This paper aims to show that these problems can be solved by means of neural “blackboard” architectures. For this purpose, a neural blackboard architecture for sentence structure is presented. In this architecture, neural structures that encode for words are temporarily bound in a manner that preserves the structure of the sentence. It is shown that the architecture solves the four problems presented by Jackendoff. The ability of the architecture to instantiate sentence structures is illustrated with examples of sentence complexity observed in human language performance. Similarities exist between the architecture for sentence structure and blackboard architectures for combinatorial structures in visual cognition, derived from the structure of the visual cortex. These architectures are briefly discussed, together with an example of a combinatorial structure in which the blackboard architectures for language and vision are combined. In this way, the architecture for language is grounded in perception. Perspectives and potential developments of the architectures are discussed. Key Words: binding; blackboard architectures; combinatorial structure; compositionality; language; dynamic system; neurocognition; sentence complexity; sentence structure; working memory; variables; vision. (shrink)
Phenomenological healthcare research should include the lived experiences of a broad group of healthcare users. In this paper it is shown how shadowing can give a voice to people in vulnerable situations who are often excluded from interview studies. Shadowing is an observational method in which the researcher observes an individual during a relatively long time. Central aspects of the method are the focus on meaning expressed by the whole body, and an extended stay of the researcher in the phenomenal (...) event itself. Inherent in shadowing is a degree of ambivalence that both challenges the researcher and provides meaningful insights about the phenomenon. A case example of a phenomenological study on the experiences of elderly hospital patients is used to show what shadowing yields. (shrink)
In this paper I critically reflect on the sustainability potential of biomimetic technologies by focusing on writings of the German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk. Although I agree with Sloterdijk that biomimetic technologies - or, as he calls them, 'homeotechnologies' - offer specific opportunities for a more peaceful co-existence of humans and nature, I will argue that his reflections are based on a series of problematic assumptions. I will conclude by arguing that the 'homeotechnological turn' can be effected only if it is (...) developed within the context of a different ecological ethos from the technocentric ethos that currently dominates our attitude towards nature. (shrink)
Background Notwithstanding the need to produce evidence-based knowledge on medications for pregnant women, they remain underrepresented in clinical research. Sometimes they are excluded because of their supposed vulnerability, but there are no universally accepted criteria for considering pregnant women as vulnerable. Our aim was to explore whether and if so to what extent pregnant women are vulnerable as research subjects. Method We performed a conceptual and empirical analysis of vulnerability applied to pregnant women. Analysis A conceptual analysis supports Hurst's definition (...) of vulnerability. Consequently, we argue that pregnant women are vulnerable if they encounter an identifiably increased likelihood of incurring additional or greater wrong. According to the literature, this increased likelihood could exist of four alleged features for pregnant women's vulnerability: informed consent, susceptibility to coercion, higher exposure to risk due to lack of knowledge, vulnerability of the fetus. Discussion Testing the features against Hurst's definition demonstrates that they all concern the same issue: pregnant women are only vulnerable because a higher exposure to risk due to lack of scientific knowledge comprises an increased wrong. Research Ethics Committees have a responsibility to protect the vulnerable, but a higher exposure to risk due to lack of scientific knowledge is a much broader issue and also needs to be addressed by other stakeholders. Conclusions The only reason why pregnant women are potentially vulnerable is to the extent that they are increasingly exposed to higher risks due to a lack of scientific knowledge. Accordingly, the discussion can advance to the development of practical strategies to promote fair inclusion of pregnant women in clinical research. (shrink)
It is often alleged that Cantor’s views about how the set theoretic universe as a whole should be considered are fundamentally unclear. In this article we argue that Cantor’s views on this subject, at least up until around 1896, are relatively clear, coherent, and interesting. We then go on to argue that Cantor’s views about the set theoretic universe as a whole have implications for theology that have hitherto not been sufficiently recognised. However, the theological implications in question, at least (...) as articulated here, would not have satisfied Cantor himself. (shrink)
Dynamic Epistemic Logic This article tells the story of the rise of dynamic epistemic logic, which began with epistemic logic, the logic of knowledge, in the 1960s. Then, in the late 1980s, came dynamic epistemic logic, the logic of change of knowledge. Much of it was motivated by puzzles and paradoxes. The number … Continue reading Dynamic Epistemic Logic →.
In this paper, we examine the relationship between Christian religiosity, attitudes towards corporate social responsibility, and CSR behavior of executives. We distinguish four types of CSR attitudes and five types of CSR behavior. Based on empirical research conducted among 473 Dutch executives, we find that CSR attitudes mediate the influence of religiosity on CSR behavior. Intrinsic religiosity positively affects the ethical CSR attitude and negatively affects the financial CSR attitude, whereas extrinsic religiosity stimulates the philanthropic CSR attitude. Financial, ethical, and (...) philanthropic CSR attitudes significantly affect some types of CSR behaviors. However, because religiosity has opposing effects on the three attitudes, the joint mediation effect of the three attitudes is negligible. Furthermore, we find a direct negative influence of intrinsic religiosity on diversity and a direct positive influence on charity. (shrink)
In this paper it will be argued that Brentano's later writings about this topic can be understood better if one describes it as a result partly of his immanent development and partly of Brentano's reactions to his contemporaries.
The Philosophy of R.G. Collingwood W. J. Van Der Dussen. Collingwood's conclusion is that " ... science, even at its best, always falls short of understanding the facts as they really are"88. Only history is able to realize this. It is another ...
To understand pre-Fregean theories of judgment and proposition, such as those found in Locke and the Port-Royal logic, it is important to distinguish between propositions in the modern sense and propositions in the pre-Fregean sense. By making this distinction it becomes clear that these pre-Fregean theories cannot be meant to solve the propositional attitude problem. Notwithstanding this fact, Locke and Arnauld are able to make a distinction between asserted and unasserted propositions (in their sense). The way Locke makes this distinction (...) turns out to be very different from the way it is made by Arnauld. (shrink)
The notion of cognitive act is of importance for an epistemology that is apt for constructive type theory, and for epistemology in general. Instead of taking knowledge attributions as the primary use of the verb 'to know' that needs to be given an account of, and understanding a first-person knowledge claim as a special case of knowledge attribution, the account of knowledge that is given here understands first-person knowledge claims as the primary use of the verb 'to know'. This means (...) that a cognitive act is an act that counts as cognitive from a first-person point of view. The method of linguistic phenomenology is used to explain or elucidate our epistemic notions. One of the advantages of the theory is that an answer can be given to some of the problems in modern epistemology, such as the Gettier problem. (shrink)
Does the moral badness of pain depend on who feels it? A common, but generally only implicitly stated view, is that it does not. This view, ‘unitarianism’, maintains that the same interests of different beings should count equally in our moral calculus. Shelly Kagan’s project in How to Count Animals, more or less is to reject this common view, and develop an alternative to it: a hierarchical view of moral status, on which the badness of pain does depend on who (...) feels it. In this review essay, we critically examine Kagan’s argument for status hierarchy. In particular, we reject two of the central premises in his argument: that moral standing is ultimately grounded in agency and that unitarianism is overdemanding. We conclude that moral status may, despite Kagan’s compelling argument to the contrary, not be hierarchical. (shrink)
As humans, we frequently engage in mental time travel, reliving past experiences and imagining possible future events. This study examined whether similar factors affect the subjective experience associated with remembering the past and imagining the future. Participants mentally “re-experienced” or “pre-experienced” positive and negative events that differed in their temporal distance from the present , and then rated the phenomenal characteristics associated with their representations. For both past and future, representations of positive events were associated with a greater feeling of (...) re-experiencing than representations of negative events. In addition, representations of temporally close events contained more sensorial and contextual details, and generated a stronger feeling of re-experiencing than representations of temporally distant events. It is suggested that the way we both remember our past and imagine our future is constrained by our current goals. (shrink)
The image of “the good nurse” is mainly studied from the perspective of nurses, which often does not match the image held by patients. Therefore, a descriptive study was conducted to examine oncology patients’ perceptions of “the good nurse” and the influence of patient- and context-related variables. A cross-sectional, comparative, descriptive design was used. The sample comprised 557 oncology patients at one of six Flemish hospitals, where they were treated in an oncology day-care unit, oncology hospital ward, or palliative care (...) unit. Data were collected using the Flemish Care-Q instrument. Factor analysis summarised the most important characteristics of “the good nurse”. We reassessed the reliability and construct validity of the Flemish Care-Q and examined the influence of patient- and context-related variables on patient perceptions. Using factor analysis, we grouped the different items of the Flemish Care-Q according to three characteristics: “the good nurse” (I) has a supportive and communicative attitude towards patient and family, (II) is competent and employs a professional attitude, and (III) demonstrates personal involvement towards patient and family. Median factor scores of Factors I, II, and III, respectively, were 8.00, 9.00, and 8.00 (varying from 1, not important, to 10, very important). In order of importance, Factors II, I, and III were identified as valuable characteristics of “the good nurse”. Gender, care setting, and province were influential variables. As perceived by oncology patients, “the good nurse” has a broad range of qualities, of which competence and professionalism are the most valuable. (shrink)
'New nature' refers to the current practice in which ten thousands of hectares of superfluous agricultural lands are 'given back to nature', compensating for the loss of 'old nature' in other parts of the Netherlands. Around the issue of 'new nature' two discourses have emerged. In each discourse different environmental values are emphasised: about what nature is or could be; about the relationship between nature, agriculture and development; about ecological mitigation, and so on. Whereas the Dutch branch of WWF is (...) the most active promoter of the sectorial nature development discourse, environmental groups like Friends of the Earth try to weigh these sectorial interests against the background of increasing environmental degradation. (shrink)