We are developing the Neurological Disease Ontology (ND) to provide a framework to enable representation of aspects of neurological diseases that are relevant to their treatment and study. ND is a representational tool that addresses the need for unambiguous annotation, storage, and retrieval of data associated with the treatment and study of neurological diseases. ND is being developed in compliance with the Open Biomedical Ontology Foundry principles and builds upon the paradigm established by the Ontology for General Medical Science (OGMS) (...) for the representation of entities in the domain of disease and medical practice. Initial applications of ND will include the annotation and analysis of large data sets and patient records for Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and stroke. (shrink)
We have begun work on two separate but related ontologies for the study of neurological diseases. The first, the Neurological Disease Ontology (ND), is intended to provide a set of controlled, logically connected classes to describe the range of neurological diseases and their associated signs and symptoms, assessments, diagnoses, and interventions that are encountered in the course of clinical practice. ND is built as an extension of the Ontology for General Medical Sciences — a high-level candidate OBO Foundry ontology that (...) provides a set of general classes that can be used to describe general aspects of medical science. ND is being built with classes utilizing both textual and axiomatized definitions that describe and formalize the relations between instances of other classes within the ontology itself as well as to external ontologies such as the Gene Ontology, Cell Ontology, Protein Ontology, and Chemical Entities of Biological Interest. In addition, references to similar or associated terms in external ontologies, vocabularies and terminologies are included when possible. Initial work on ND is focused on the areas of Alzheimer’s and other diseases associated with dementia, multiple sclerosis, and stroke and cerebrovascular disease. Extensions to additional groups of neurological diseases are planned. The second ontology, the Neuro-Psychological Testing Ontology (NPT), is intended to provide a set of classes for the annotation of neuropsychological testing data. The intention of this ontology is to allow for the integration of results from a variety of neuropsychological tests that assay similar measures of cognitive functioning. Neuro-psychological testing is an important component in developing the clinical picture used in the diagnosis of patients with a range of neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis, and following stroke or traumatic brain injury. NPT is being developed as an extension to the Ontology for Biomedical Investigations. (shrink)
We consider the complex interactions between rape culture and epistemology. A central case study is the consideration of a deferential attitude about the epistemology of sexual assault testimony. According to the deferential attitude, individuals and institutions should decline to act on allegations of sexual assault unless and until they are proven in a formal setting, i.e., a criminal court. We attack this deference from several angles, including the pervasiveness of rape culture in the criminal justice system, the epistemology of testimony (...) and norms connecting knowledge and action, the harms of tacit idealizations away from important contextual factors, and a contextualist semantics for 'knows' ascriptions. (shrink)
In this paper, the authors present a presuppositional account for a class of evaluative terms that encode both a descriptive and an evaluative component: slurs and thick terms. The authors discuss several issues related to the hybrid nature of these terms, such as their projective behavior, the ways in which one may reject their evaluative content, and the ways in which evaluative content is entailed or implicated (as the case may be) by the use of such terms.
Abstract In the last fifteen years philosophers and linguists have turned their attention to slurs: derogatory expressions that target certain groups on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, nationality and so on. This interest is due to the fact that, on the one hand, slurs possess puzzling linguistic properties; on the other hand, the questions they pose are related to other crucial issues, such as the descriptivism/expressivism divide, the semantics/pragmatics divide and, generally speaking, the theory of meaning. Despite these (...) recent investigations about pejoratives, there is no widely accepted explanation of slurs:in my paper I consider the intuitions we have about slurs and I assess the difficulties that the main theories encounter in explaining how these terms work in order to identify the phenomena that a satisfactory account of slurs needs to explain. Then, I focus on the pragmatic theories that deal with the notions of conventional implicature and pragmatic presupposition: I assess the objections that have been raised and I propose two ways of defending the presuppositional account, taking into consideration the notion of cancellability. I will claim that the reason why most pragmatic strategies seem to fail to account for slurs is that they assume a rigid divide between conventional implicatures and presuppositions that should not be taken for granted. Reconsidering the relationship between these two notions gives a hint about how a pragmatic account of slurs should look like. Finally, I assess the problem of which presupposition slurs in fact trigger. (shrink)
ABSTRACTThe article investigates which epistemological considerations justify how religious life fits into the school life, and examines the debate on the participation of religiosity in the education system. I do this, first, by addressing the pedagogical implications of the distinction between public and private as maintained by Richard Rorty and, second, by reconsidering the pluralist metaphysics held by William James as an alternative path to understanding and re-addressing the question of religious life in school life. The article analyzes how the (...) strict separation of projects of individual self-creation and the public sphere, as defended by Rorty, poses problems in implementing pluralism in democratic societies and their educational institutions. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to provide arguments based on linguistic evidence that discard a truth-conditional analysis of slurs and pave the way for more promising approaches. We consider Hom and May’s version of TCA, according to which the derogatory content of slurs is part of their truth-conditional meaning such that, when slurs are embedded under semantic operators such as negation, there is no derogatory content that projects out of the embedding. In order to support this view, Hom and (...) May make two moves: they point to cases where it looks like projection does not occur and they try to explain away cases where projection seems to occur by appealing to a pragmatic phenomenon that they call ‘offense’. Pace Hom and May, we argue that the derogatory content of slurs does in fact project and, in advocating for our claim, we show that those cases where it looks like projection does not occur are in fact metalinguistic uses in which slurs are not really used, by relying on three linguistic tests ; and we refute Hom and May’s attempt to explain why speakers would entertain the supposedly wrong intuition that the derogatory content of slurs projects out of semantic embedding, by focusing on the case of slurs for fictional entities. We conclude that Hom and May’s strategies to support TCA ultimately fail. (shrink)
ABSTRACTFor Rorty, any attempt to articulate a theory of truth as such is of no interest. This implies that although it may be meaningful to differentiate the truths from the falsehoods, it is pointless to say what the property of goodness is in the things we believe are good to do. Rorty points out that our no longer understanding Philosophy – with the capital ‘P’–as the framing of normative notions would make room for a post-philosophical culture where the philosophers’ activity (...) would be closer to the practices of cultural critique with the self-imposed limitation of devoting themselves exclusively to advancing descriptions of how things relate to each other. This article aims to explore what would happen if this provocation were brought to the field of Pedagogy. Taking on this Rortyan theme, keeping hope on the potentially liberating and transformative power of education implies a hopeful attitude by which individuals involved in education processes express their love for the world as a commitment to a better future, as well as their belief in its possibilities. (shrink)
René Girard argues that violence and the sacred are inseparable, yet how do the political boundaries of sacrifice shift when state violence is privatized and increasingly disembodied? This article provides a Foucauldian challenge to Girard by invoking the mutually reinforcing problem of military privatization and drone warfare. Using Foucauldian work on race and biopolitics, I will explore how military privatization permits states to call for the end of sacrifice. I trace the genealogical trajectories of the citizen-soldier to argue that military (...) privatization, as exemplified by the burgeoning industry of private military and security companies and the current American administration’s use of drone warfare, allows for the removal of sacrifice as a feature of the post-World War II social contract between states and citizens. Historically, the sacrifices of citizen-soldiers have been consecrated within the boundaries of the nation and memorialized in a way that allows for both the production of shared collective memory and a projected future-oriented discourse of unification through shared national or ethnic destiny. Drones, as the technological extension of the philosophy of military privatization and the high-tech expression of ‘pre-modern’ violence, reveal tensions between embodied combat, citizenship and sacrifice. (shrink)
BackgroundBiobanks are considered to be key infrastructures for research development and have generated a lot of debate about their ethical, legal and social implications. While the focus has been on human genomic research, rapid advances in human microbiome research further complicate the debate.DiscussionWe draw on two cystic fibrosis biobanks in Toronto, Canada, to illustrate our points. The biobanks have been established to facilitate sample and data sharing for research into the link between disease progression and microbial dynamics in the lungs (...) of pediatric and adult patients. We begin by providing an overview of some of the ELSI associated with human microbiome research, particularly on the implications for the broader society. We then discuss ethical considerations regarding the identifiability of samples biobanked for human microbiome research, and examine the issue of return of results and incidental findings. We argue that, for the purposes of research ethics oversight, human microbiome research samples should be treated with the same privacy considerations as human tissues samples. We also suggest that returning individual microbiome-related findings could provide a powerful clinical tool for care management, but highlight the need for a more grounded understanding of contextual factors that may be unique to human microbiome research.ConclusionsWe revisit the ELSI of biobanking and consider the impact that human microbiome research might have. Our discussion focuses on identifiability of human microbiome research samples, and return of research results and incidental findings for clinical management. (shrink)
Defining the principles of justice that ought to govern the global economic and political sphere is one of the most urgent tasks that contemporary political philosophers face. But they must also contribute to working through the institutional implications of these principles. How might principles of global justice be realized? Must the institutions that aim to implement them be transnational, or can global justice be attained within the context of the state system? Can institutions of democratic self-governance be imagined beyond the (...) nation-state? These are just some of the questions that still face political philosophers even when issues of abstract principle have been addressed. This volume establishes a dialogue between philosophers working at all levels of abstraction. Some of the authors are concerned with the grounds and scope of the obligations that bind the citizens and governments of rich countries to those of poorer nations. But many examine the question of how these obligations can be satisfied, both within existing institutional frameworks and beyond. Together their essays constitute a major contribution to the advancement of both the theoretical understanding and the practical requirements of global justice. (shrink)
Social responsibility is typically examined at the firm level, yet there are instances in which consumers’ social responsibility perceptions of the firm’s product brands differ from social responsibility perceptions with regard to the firm [i.e., corporate social responsibility ]. This article conceptualizes brand social responsibility and delineates it from CSR. Following the development of a BSR scale, this research demonstrates variations in consumers’ social responsibility perceptions across product brands even if they are owned by the same corporation and compete in (...) the same product category. BSR is distinct from CSR, and better predicts consumers’ responses to product brands compared to corporate level measures. Consistent with the conceptual distinction, this research demonstrates the unique contribution of BSR and CSR in predicting product brand and corporate outcomes, respectively. From a theoretical viewpoint, this research is one of the few to examine differences between product brand and CSR. From a managerial viewpoint, the consideration of social responsibility at the product brand level facilitates the assessment of social responsibility perceptions across brands in brand portfolios managed under a mixed-branding or house-of-brands strategy. (shrink)
In this paper we re-examine Hugh LaFollette's proposal that the state carefully determine the eligibility and suitability of prospective parents before granting them a ?license to parent?. Assuming a prima facie case for licensing parents grounded in our duty to promote the welfare of the child, we offer several considerations that complicate LaFollette's radical proposal. We suggest that LaFollette can only escape these problems by revising his proposal in a way that renders the license effectively obsolete, a route he implicitly (...) adopts in his recent revisiting of the licensing proposal. We conclude that there is little merit in the idea of licensing ?natural? parents as a practical policy proposal, and raise some questions about its continued use in relation to adoptive and foster parents. (shrink)
This is the first comprehensive evaluation of Charles Taylor's work and a major contribution to leading questions in philosophy and the human sciences as they face an increasingly pluralistic age. Charles Taylor is one of the most influential contemporary moral and political philosophers: in an era of specialisation he is one of the few thinkers who has developed a comprehensive philosophy which speaks to the conditions of the modern world in a way that is compelling to specialists in various disciplines. (...) This collection of specially commissioned essays brings together twelve distinguished scholars from a variety of fields to discuss critically Taylor's work. The topics range from the history of philosophy, to truth, modernity and postmodernity, theism, interpretation, the human sciences, liberalism, pluralism and difference. Taylor responds to all the contributions and re-articulates his own views. (shrink)
_ Source: _Volume 56, Issue 3-4, pp 222 - 240 In medieval theories of consequence, we encounter several criteria of validity. One of these is known as the containment criterion: a consequence is valid when the consequent is contained or understood in the antecedent. The containment criterion was formulated most frequently in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, but it can be found in earlier writings as well. In _The Tradition of the Topics in the Middle Ages_, N.J. Green-Pedersen claimed that (...) this criterion originated with Boethius. In this article, the author shows that a notion of containment is indeed present in Boethius, but is not used to define or describe the relation between antecedent and consequent, i.e., the relation of consequence, as Green-Pedersen asserted. The author then offers two interpretations of the notion of containment that are present in Boethius – a metaphysical and a semantic interpretation – and shows how these relate to the containment criterion. (shrink)
Nature and civilisation -- Climate and the forms of the atmosphere -- Surface and the forms of the land -- Living forms -- The forms of metabolism -- Humans - anatomical and cultural forms -- City forms -- The forms of information, energy and ecology -- Emergence.
The practices comprising the analytic category of street harassment are rarely responded to through either criminal or restorative justice approaches, and the possibilities for transformative justice have to date not been considered. In this article we advocate for a victim-centred justice response to street harassment, specifically examining the potential for transformative justice to function in this way. Drawing on data from a recent Australian study, we examine participants’ understandings of justice and desired justice responses to street harassment. Participants’ responses drew (...) attention to a range of perceived shortcomings of the formal justice system as a mechanism for responding to street harassment. Instead, participants advocated for a justice response concerned with transforming cultural and structural norms, in particular gender norms. We end in an examination of the limitations of transformative justice, looking to recent work on “kaleidoscopic justice” as a way of transforming common conceptions of justice itself. (shrink)
This article provides an introduction to the articles in this theme issue. This collection examines epistemological, ontological, moral and political questions in medicine in light of the philosophical ideas of Charles Taylor. A synthesis of Taylor's relevant work is presented. Taylor has argued for a conception of the human sciences that regards human life as meaningful–deriving meaning from surrounding horizons of significance. An overview of the interdisciplinary articles in this issue is presented. This collection advances our thinking in the philosophy (...) of medicine as well as the philosophy of Charles Taylor. (shrink)
In this paper, I consider the phenomenon of evaluation reversal for two classes of evaluative terms that have received a great deal of attention in philosophy of language and linguistics: slurs and thick terms. I consider three approaches to analyze evaluation reversal: lexical deflationist account, ambiguity account and echoic account. My purpose is mostly negative: my aim is to underline the shortcomings of these three strategies, in order to possibly pave the way for more suitable accounts.
In this article I reflect on my experiences of using Facebook as a recruitment tool. Although there were many benefits associated with using this method of recruitment, there were also several unanticipated ethical dilemmas that arose. This article reflects on these dilemmas, locating them within some broader concerns around online research and privacy, and considers some potential avenues for avoiding similar issues in future research. It became apparent that these ethical issues were heightened for me as a doctoral researcher in (...) a process of identity transition. I consider how this state of ‘shifting’ identity heightened my experience of these ethical tensions, and brought to the fore questions around online identity management and ways of ‘doing’ identity online. (shrink)
Freedom of Conscience and Freedom of Religion should be taken to protect two distinct sets of moral considerations. The former protects the ability of the agent to reflect critically upon the moral and political issues that arise in her society generally, and in her professional life more specifically. The latter protects the individual's ability to achieve secure membership in a set of practices and rituals that have as a moral function to inscribe her life in a temporally extended narrative. Once (...) these grounds are distinguished, it becomes more difficult to grant healthcare professionals' claims to religious exemptions on the basis of the latter than it is on the basis of the former. While both sets of considerations generate ‘internal reasons’ for rights to accommodation, the relevant ‘external’ reasons present in the case of claims of moral conscience do not possess analogues in the case of claims of religious conscience. However, the argument applies only to ‘irreducibly religious’ claims, that is to claims that cannot be translated into moral vocabulary. What's more, there may be reasons to grant the claims of religious persons to exemptions that have to do not with the nature of the claims, but with the beneficial effects that the presence of religious persons may have in the context of the healthcare institutions of multi-faith societies. (shrink)
We contrast two positions concerning the initial domain of actions that infants interpret as goal-directed. The 'narrow scope' view holds that goal-attribution in 6- and 9-month-olds is restricted to highly familiar actions (such as grasping) (). The cue-based approach of the infant's 'teleological stance' (), however, predicts that if the cues of equifinal variation of action and a salient action effect are present, young infants can attribute goals to a 'wide scope' of entities including unfamiliar human actions and actions of (...) novel objects lacking human features. It is argued that previous failures to show goal-attribution to unfamiliar actions were due to the absence of these cues. We report a modified replication of showing that when a salient action-effect is presented, even young infants can attribute a goal to an unfamiliar manual action. This study together with other recent experiments reviewed support the 'wide scope' approach indicating that if the cues of goal-directedness are present even 6-month-olds attribute goals to unfamiliar actions. (shrink)
In this paper, I discuss the Reclamation Worry, raised by Anderson and Lepore 2013 and addressed by Ritchie concerning the appropriation of slurs. I argue that Ritchie’s way to solve the RW is not adequate and I show why such an apparent worry is not actually problematic and should not lead us to postulate a rich complex semantics for reclaimed slurs. To this end, after illustrating the phenomenon of appropriation of slurs, I introduce the Reclamation Worry. In section 3, I (...) argue that Richie’s complex proposal is not needed to explain the phenomenon. To show that, I compare the case of reclaimed and non-reclaimed slurs to the case of polysemic personal pronouns featuring, among others, in many Romance languages. In section 4 I introduce the notion of ‘authoritativeness’ that I take to be crucial to account for reclamation. In section 5, I focus on particular cases that support my claims and speak against the parsimony of the indexical account. Finally, I conclude with a methodological remark about the ways in which the debate on appropriation has developed in the literature. (shrink)
The post-confinement phase of the COVID-19 pandemic will require that governments navigate more complex ethical questions than had occurred in the initial, ‘curve-flattening’ phase, and that will occur when the pandemic is in the past. By looking at the unavoidable harms involved in the confinement and quarantine methods employed during the initial phase of the pandemic, we can develop a harm reduction approach to managing the phase during which society will be gradually reopened in a context of managed risk. The (...) principles that are at the heart of such an approach include a reckoning with all of the harms involved in policy choice, including harms that might be given rise to by policy implementation itself; a focus on the harms to which already vulnerable populations are susceptible; and a strong preference for policies that economize on the use of prohibitions and of coercive state enforcement, and that instead emphasize the agency of citizens in realizing health-promoting behavior change. This framework is applied to a policy proposal that has been discussed in policy circles in a number of countries, that of immunity ‘passports’, and to policies that emphasize the creative use of space and time to achieve physical distancing goals. (shrink)
We consider Guttman scales both from an algebraic and a statistical point of view. We present a duality between a class of algebras and Guttman scalable response structures, and show that the index of reproducibility is not always a reliable indicator for the Guttman scalability of a data set. Furthermore, we present a model checking procedure, and close with an example.
In her book, Conscience and Conviction, Kimberley Brownlee argues that there is nothing undemocratic about the robust, primary right to civil disobedience that she devotes most of her argument to defending. To the contrary, she holds that there is nothing paternalistic about civil disobedients opposing the will of democratic majorities, because, inter alia, democratic majorities cannot claim particular epistemic superiority, and because there are flaws inherent to democratic procedures that civil disobedience addresses. I hold that Brownlee’s arguments fail. In particular, (...) her argument fails because it does not properly construe the nature of the epistemic claim that can be made either by democratic procedures or by civil disobedients, and because it illegitimately conflates the concern about permanent minorities that has been a constant thorn in the side of democratic theorists, with a concern with all outvoted minorities, whether permanent minorities or not. (shrink)