I answer Alvin Plantinga's challenge to provide a ‘proper’ de jure objection to religious belief. What I call the ‘sophisticates’ evidential objection' concludes that sophisticated Christians lack epistemic justification for believing central Christian propositions. The SEO utilizes a theory of epistemic justification in the spirit of the evidentialism of Richard Feldman and Earl Conee. I defend philosophical interest in the SEO against objections from Reformed epistemology, by addressing Plantinga's criteria for a proper de jure objection, his anti-evidentialist arguments, and the (...) relevance of ‘impulsional evidence’. I argue that no result from Plantinga-style Reformed epistemology precludes the reasons I offer in favour of giving the SEO its due philosophical attention. (shrink)
A review of Sandra D. Mitchell's excellent book "Unsimple Truths" -/- I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in: -/- - Scientific metaphysics - Philosophy of science - Emergence - Science and epistemology - Philosophy of complexity and complex systems - Non-reductive physicalism - Philosophical analyses of simulations - Prediction .
While even today lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people might have cause to distrust the healthcare establishment, how much more fragile was the relationship between sexual minorities and health professionals in the first decade of the AIDS epidemic. Dissent from consensus healthcare and health research then was a question of survival in the face of political and medical intransigence. This article focuses on one version of AIDS dissent: The narrative representations of AIDS in fiction by the gay African-American fantasy writer (...) Samuel R. Delany, which rejected the rigid binarism of “safe” and “unsafe” sex practices, Delany’s evidence-based dissent. He also engaged in a related form of cultural dissent: speaking the unspeakably obscene, at a time when Silence = Death. Delany called into question both the inferential leaps based on limited epidemiological research that were represented in safer sex guidelines and the widespread public reticence about sexual behavior. (shrink)
This study investigated attitudes toward the use of deception in negotiation, with particular attention to the distinction between deception regarding the informational elements of the interaction (e.g., lying about or misrepresenting needs or preferences) and deception about emotional elements (e.g., misrepresenting one's emotional state). We examined how individuals judge the relative ethical appropriateness of these alternative forms of deception, and how these judgments relate to negotiator performance and long-run reputation. Individuals viewed emotionally misleading tactics as more ethically appropriate to (...) use in negotiation than informational deception. Approval of deception predicted negotiator performance in a negotiation simulation and also general reputation as a negotiator, but the nature of these relationships depended on the kind of deception involved. (shrink)
In this monograph R. W. Beardsmore presents a lucid and readable presentation of what he takes moral reasoning to be and what he expects moral reasoning to accomplish. It is another in the long list of works which attempt to apply later-Wittgensteinian insights to the problems of ethics. The common moves run this way: Wittgenstein insists that to say that something is justified, or to say there are justifiable reasons for some position implies some fundamental agreement in our language (...) game. Moral argumentation can only take place within the context of a shared ethical language game. This moral viewpoint invests, what appear to be facts with value. According to Beardsmore the importance of shared moral viewpoints is missed by R. M. Hare with his dichotomizing of fact and value and his insistence on a decision of principle. Beardsmore also attacks the position of Phillipa Foot whom he sees on the opposite side of the issue from Hare. He sees Foot as insisting on the necessary dependence of values upon facts, which leads to her inability to account for changing moral viewpoints. Beardsmore tries to show that these views of Foot and Hare agree at least on one point, that there must be one specific way to give reasons for moral positions and hence solve moral disputes. Beardsmore has made a significant contribution by offering an illuminating application of Wittgenstein's insights to the problems of ethical theory. If they did nothing more, these insight's would be important in so far as they help to unlock the hold that the fact-value dichotomy has imposed on ethical theory for so long.--R. F. D. (shrink)
This volume is a revival and updating of the rationalism initiated by the Cartesian cogito. Even the four main divisions of the work give evidence of this: Perception, the Real World, Real Mind, and the Suprarational. The order of treatment is not identical in every respect with that of Descartes, but the four main themes are indubitably Cartesian. While the protagonist is Descartes, the antagonist to whom this volume is consciously addressed is the empiricist and the positivist. Professor Robinson seems (...) intent on convincing the contemporary positivist that science is primarily an affair of reason and secondarily one of experience. He enlists two formidable allies of Descartes to elucidate and solidify his position. One he finds in the same century as Descartes, the redoubtable Leibniz; the other he takes from the twentieth century, Bertrand Russell. The problem of perception is resolved by the joint solution of Leibniz and Russell, a solution which rejects a naive realism in favor of a metarealism. The singular attraction of this volume is the personal dedication and expertise which Professor Robinson brings to this subject. His exploration and defense of his rationalistic premise brings him to examine epistemic issues and paradoxes which have cast long shadows over the history of modern and contemporary philosophy in Western civilization. These are the issues with which the inheritors of the Cartesian cogito have been wrestling: Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. Another very attractive aspect of this volume is that whereas Professor Robinson’s thesis has its protagonist and antagonist, it does not explicitly address itself to these. They remain more in the background as the audience to whom the book is addressed. They are not called on explicitly to engage in the exposition. In this sense, the book is not presented as a professorial treatise with copious footnotes and an extensive bibliography. It is presented as a personal exposition engaging in the act of philosophizing within the letter and spirit of a rationalistic revival. In spite of this personal and personalized renewal of rationalism on the part of Professor Robinson, it should not be construed that the book is written either for the layman or by a layman. It is a methodical and technical exposition replete with the coinage of new terms befitting the spirit of a philosophy operating within the parameters of a self-enclosed and self-contained scientism. Professor Robinson presents his book as a viable alternative to the monopoly which the empiricist and positivist have exercised within the domain of the philosophy of science.—R.E.D. (shrink)
The aim of this book is to introduce the reader to some new areas of contemporary logic which generally fall under the rubric of philosophical logic. It succeeds in this task to a degree, although the chapters are for the most part adaptations of journal articles published by Rescher over the last ten years and are more self-contained than they might have been. But the book should renew interest in the problems of philosophical logic. It contains many interesting discussions and (...) a great deal of useful information. Rescher begins with chapters on modal logic which include some discussion of intuitionistic logic and the causal modalities as well as the alethic modalities. He then discusses the notion of belief as a representative notion of epistemic logic. A long chapter is devoted to a history and survey of the main systems of many valued logics. Shorter, but still substantial, chapters are devoted to the logic of existence, non-standard quantification theory, chronological or tense logic, topological or positional logic, logic of assertion and logic of preference. Still shorter chapters are given to deontic logic, probability logic, a discussion of random individuals and self-reference. An interesting final chapter provides a new "discourse on method" for the philosophical or applied logician.--R. H. K. (shrink)
This introduction to formal logic is one of the few paperbacks available that provides a broad survey of the field. In addition to a clear presentation of sentential and first order quantificational logic, there is a discussion of the philosophical significance of recent work by Church, Gödel, and Tarski. The proof technique employed throughout is the indirect argument. Since proofs of this sort can be converted into mechanical tests of validity, it is easier than most for a beginning student to (...) grasp. Furthermore, this style of argument has long been recognized as the most obvious method of showing arguments in ordinary language to be invalid. Interesting treatments of the construction of decision machines, the nature of formal systems, and the application of logic to mathematics are included in the last section. Numerous exercises are included for which some answers are provided.--R. P. M. (shrink)
The nine essays in this volume resulted from a symposium on "criminal justice and punishment" at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, in response to concerns about the workability and defensibility of any system of punishment. Among the contributors are Professors of Philosophy, Law, and Government, and the executive director of a Law Enforcement Commission. What emerges as the central focus of the book is a predominant interest in "retributivism." As J. B. Cederblom writes in the introduction, the retributive or (...) "just deserts" theory of punishment has come to dominate at the present time. The extent to which the retributivist position is promoted in opposition to an indistinct representation of utilitarianism, makes the book less challenging as a statement of the retributive position on punishment. Without a doubt, the more recent works of R. M. Hare and David Lyons, among others writing on utilitarian theory, do much to make easy claims against the theory appear facile if not naive. It is interesting that the bibliography does not refer to Hare’s work and mentions only one essay by Lyons. This is not to condemn the book, however, for it serves an important role in reawakening philosophers to the importance of a long-standing debate with a revived and healthy retributivism. But it is a warning that it is oftentimes too easy to defend a position when the opposition is not represented at the hearing. (shrink)
Burke and his predecessors seem to be most before the mind of the editor in his long introduction to this standard eighteenth-century work: he traces the growth of Burke's ideas on art and compares them with contemporary investigations. The sections examining the doctrines themselves are somewhat vague, and those tracing the philosophical reaction to Burke rather too short; however the study of Burke's influence on artists is fascinating reading. The text is done with care, and the footnotes include excerpts (...) from the reviews of the Enguiry's first edition where these seem to have guided Burke's revisions.--R. F. T. (shrink)
It is unfortunate in this time when so little Scotus is available in English that Wolter uses the dear space of this volume to produce material available elsewhere: his own translation of "Man's Natural Knowledge of God", and McKeon's translation of "Concerning Human Knowledge". He also includes a long section from the Oxford Commentary on the existence of God, much of which is paralleled in De Primo Principio, available in English. But the selection Wolter does make, including material on (...) metaphysics, the unicity of God, and the soul, is well balanced and makes an excellent introduction to Scotus' thought. The fine, imaginative translation faces the Latin text. It is to be hoped that this useful volume will stimulate interest in translating Balic's critical edition, now in the making.--R. C. N. (shrink)
Brilliantly elaborating and defending his doctrine of "neoclassical metaphysics," for which reality is a process containing necessary, unchanging features as well as contingent particulars whose advent involves novelty, Hartshorne has contributed a work of permanent value to philosophical theology. The book contains a long defense of Anselm's ontological argument, interpreted in neoclassical terms. Hartshorne deals with some twenty standard objections, and argues that Anselm's proof is not that God must have the predicate "existence," but rather that perfection cannot be (...) contingent. The conclusion is that perfection is necessary, for otherwise it is meaningless. The other chapters are largely drawn from previously published papers, and lack unity, though they cast additional light on neoclassical metaphysics.--R. C. N. (shrink)
Was Hegel a good guy or a bad guy? Was he a conservative or a liberal? Was he a proto-fascist as Popper has claimed or the greatest philosophic champion of human freedom as Marcuse has claimed? The debate has been a long and heated one and in this volume, Kaufmann includes a number of articles written in English that are concerned with these related issues. But one feels that something is missing from these heated controversies and that is Hegel (...) himself. As Kaufmann himself says: "Whoever wants to know what Hegel's political philosophy really was, must in the end go back to Hegel himself...." These papers do, however, succeed in giving one a sense of what are key issues in understanding and assessing Hegel's political philosophy.--R. J. B. (shrink)
This is an interesting intellectual biography of the early years of Merleau-Ponty's philosophical life. The author claims a clear change of thinking took place in 1939, when Merleau-Ponty began to read some of Husserl's manuscripts, and attempts to sketch his thought up to that point. He gives biographical data on his early life; analyzes his first two publications, on Scheler and Marcel; and describes his relationship with Sartre and other major figures of the time. He claims that the philosophical problem (...) bothering Merleau-Ponty at the time of La structure du comportement was that of reconciling a reflective approach to man with the scientific, objective approach. This dilemma was resolved in the philosophy of perceptual experience, in which the perceiver is taken as both a part of the world and the bodily subject that enjoys the world. Geraets observes that Merleau-Ponty tries to avoid the classical transcendental philosophy, and finds the foundation of philosophy not in a pure subject but in the process of experiencing; in this he differs even from Husserl, who provided him with the key to avoid the nagging objectivism of his early works by showing that the true transcendentals were concrete ingredients like the world, perception, the body, and place, and not the forms of scientific thinking or pure intellect. Geraets gives a long commentary on La structure du comportement; shows the influence of Bergson and the psychologists on Merleau-Ponty; and traces in detail the influence of essays by Fink and Landgrebe, with their Heideggerian dimensions. There is a preface by Emmanuel Levinas, and a ten-page bibliography of the publications of Merleau-Ponty, listed chronologically in order of appearance.--R. S. (shrink)
A comprehensive introduction to modal logic is long overdue and this one has many virtues. It is clearly written and should be accessible to any student who has at least one semester of basic logic and is willing to read carefully and think abstractly. The first part, on modal propositional logic, begins with a summary account of classical propositional logic, the axiomatization of Principia Mathematica being the basis for the development of modal logics throughout the book. The transition to (...) modal logic is nicely motivated by a clear presentation of intuitive notions of modality and the requirements to be included in a modal logic. Thereafter three standard systems of modal propositional logic are developed axiomatically, Feys' system T and Lewis' systems S4 and S5. The semantics for these systems is then developed in the manner of Kripke with some terminological modifications. The explanation of accessibility relations between possible worlds is made especially clear through a helpful analogy with certain sorts of games. Decision procedures and completeness proofs are then developed. A similar pattern of exposition is given to modal predicate logic in Part II, the difference being that Henkin-type methods are used in the completeness proofs. Because of the many philosophical problems raised by modal predicate logic, Part II contains more philosophical discussion than Part I. A discussion of identity and descriptions in modal predicate logic is also included. The third and final part is a survey of modal systems beginning with the Lewis' systems S1-S5 and going on to systems weaker and stronger than the Lewis' systems and others which are independent of them. Systems with alternative primitives and axiomatic bases are also discussed. A final chapter discusses the relation of Boolean algebras to modal logics and brief appendices deal with natural deduction systems of modal logic, systems of entailment, alternative notations and the semantics of Kripke and Hintikka among other topics. There are exercises at the end of each chapter. This summary suggests the merits of this introduction, its clear exposition and the enormous amount of material it brings together and summarizes.--R. H. K. (shrink)
Some of these essays are attempts to describe areas of human experience. Edward Ballard analyzes some essentials of our experience of a visual object and its distance from us; Don Ihde explores auditory imagination, with interesting comments on the difference between perception and imagination and the role of inner speech in such imagining; Richard Zaner cites many novels and poems in his description of one's coming to experience one's own self; José Huertas-Jourda warns us to beware of verbal formulas in (...) ethical education and distinguishes levels of communication in regard to ethics ; and W. J. Stein writes about interpersonal relations. Other essays are more exegetical: Manfred Frings on Scheler; Joseph Kockelmans on language in Heidegger; and F. J. Smith on being and subjectivity in Heidegger and Husserl. Thomas Langan and Herbert Spiegelberg write on phenomenology as a humane and philosophical discipline. There is a long essay by Jacques Derrida, "Ousia and grammë," which, starting with Heidegger and moving through Aristotle and Hegel, criticizes the present--in both senses of time and manifestation--as not ultimate, but derivative upon that from which both the present and absent emerge.--R. S. (shrink)
As the author states, this book could be read as an introductory text on scientific explanation and related topics or as a monograph which introduces some new ideas and takes a stand on these topics. Part I is strictly a textbook treatment of explanations and laws. It is clearly written and is particularly good in the classification of sorts of explanations. Part II is less successful as introductory material, but it contains some novel ideas. The author develops an approach to (...) explanation, prediction, and retrodiction by considering discrete state systems. He shows that for any number of simple systems of this kind, deterministic and probabilistic explanation, prediction, and retrodiction may not work. The discussion is abstract and the results are not related to actual physical systems. But the possibility of such systems is surely important for any complete theory of explanation as the author suggests. Discussions are also included of teleological systems and of confirming evidence. Part III discusses philosophical issues about the nature of laws, causality, indeterminism, and the limits of explanation. Two appendices discuss problems of scientific explanation in history and the social sciences. There is a long and very useful bibliography.--R. H. K. (shrink)
In preparing this second edition of his commentary, Weldon has left the historical sections materially unaltered but has almost tripled the critical treatment. This leads to a far more valuable book, particularly since he has replaced long summary passages with systematic treatment of the issues Kant raises.--R. F. T.
In this book the author develops his own systems of and semantics for presupposition free logic. He calls his systems logics without existence assumptions, by which he means logical systems which are sound and complete with respect to a semantic theory in which a universe of discourse can be empty but any term which denotes must denote something in the universe, all predicates including identity represent relations holding among members of the universe and the quantifiers range over just all the (...) members of the universe. In a brief introductory chapter the author reviews the motivations for constructing non-standard logics of this kind and briefly discusses what he takes to be the limitations of previous work done in the field. Persons interested in the philosophical problems and uses of such logics are likely to find this chapter interesting though disappointingly brief. Four of the eight chapters are devoted to the development of a natural deduction system N which is a logic without existence assumptions in the author's sense. The system N is shown to be sound and complete with respect to the author's semantics. An axiomatic system L is later developed and shown to be equivalent to N. The final chapter is devoted to discussing the relation of his work to many-valued logics, modal logics, intuitionistic logic and the theory of classes among other topics. The author believes that logics without existence assumptions "will in the long run displace the less natural and more narrow standard logics."--R. H. K. (shrink)
As the title indicates, this most recent of Hartshorne's works blends doctrinal exposition with analyses of methodological issues. Each of the sixteen chapters can be read as an independent essay, although the entire work is intended as "an essay in systematic metaphysics." The paradox is resolved once we realize that Hartshorne does not separate substantive discussion and the examination of methodological principles--the text exemplifies the principles latent in "creative synthesis" as he understands it. Each chapter takes shape out of a (...) position-matrix in terms of which a number of possible positions on problems of relations, modality, and temporality are exhibited and finally sifted in order to determine the most viable for future philosophic inquiry. Portions of six of the chapters had previously been published, one as early as 1958; the remaining ten appear for the first time in this volume. Although much of the doctrinal content will be familiar to those who have read Hartshorne's earlier works, the clarity and coherence of these essays make it an especially valuable work for students of metaphysics, whether they accept the neoclassical position or not. In the first chapter, "A Philosophy of Shared Creative Experience," Hartshorne presents his case for the inclusive priority of "becoming" over "being"; in the next three chapters, he turns to a more detailed analysis of technical problems in metaphysics--the specification of the domain of metaphysical inquiry, the viability of the notion of inclusive contrast as the heart of "relativity", and the ultimate coincidence of modal and temporal categories as the summit of the analyses of "abstractions". Each of these chapters is an excellent example of Hartshorne's working through "position-matrices"; but for those who are unfamiliar with Hartshorne's work, or for those who desire a less 'naïve' approach to metaphysical inquiry it might be advisable to turn to Chapters V and VI immediately after Chapter I. In these two essays, Hartshorne presents a general exposition of the structure of his system, exposing and defending the conception of relativity which lies at the heart of his system: the triadicity [[sic]] of creative synthesis must be construed relatively, the contrast of relative and absolute being included within the relative member of the contrast. In the succeeding chapters, the difficulties which such a conception must face are explored in detail. Among the difficulties which Hartshorne focuses upon are the possibility of "non-restrictive or necessary existential truths", the psychological reeducation which a conception of the priority of events necessitates, the explanatory power of directed or asymmetrical relations as opposed to non-directed, symmetrical ones, and the critique of the notion of ens realissimum and its substitution by the universal forms of dependence and independence. It is interesting that at various places in this work Hartshorne indicates that the importance of the problem of the relations among contemporaries must be relegated to secondary status in the philosophy of shared creative experience. It becomes increasingly evident that were the author to stress its importance, he should have to turn to a conception of eternal objects functioning relationally or affirm interaction between God and any other individual in strictly simultaneous states. Either move would necessitate a major shift in his methodological principles and substantive doctrines. That he has struggled with the problem of the relations among contemporaries for so long shows his willingness to confront the possibility of such a shift. This is one of the major criteria for evaluating metaphysicians, as Hartshorne notes; in the light of this criterion, Hartshorne's newest work will be judged a significant contribution to metaphysical inquiry.--R. L. C. (shrink)
Brand begins his book with a statement of the philosophical and cultural crisis of contemporary life, a crisis brought about by science. The idealizing methods and technology of contemporary science lead to a loss of self-understanding, and to a replacement of ordinary lived experience by scientific constructs; science in its turn has lost its human and philosophical meaning. An exploration of the life-world that provides the basis for science may help remedy this situation. Brand then explores the theme of a (...) concrete, lived world in Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre and Merleau-Ponty. In these sections he examines themes appropriate to each author: essence, intuition, evidence and intentionality in Husserl; hermeneutics, world, sensibility and authenticity in Heidegger; en soi, pour soi, and negativity in Sartre; the body, science, and dialectics in Merleau-Ponty. These are not just introductory analyses; in each case Brand comes to terms with major interpretations and critics, and is able to show the unity of philosophic inspiration behind each man. In the second section of the book he presents his own analysis of the life-world. He begins with a long study of the nature of philosophical reflection. This includes a treatment of the formal process of distinguishing and reuniting into wholes. He analyzes conceptualization, the experience of wonder, meaning and expression, metaphor, communication, sensibility and the body. Action, value, need, choice, scarcity, and motives are among the themes treated next, and also social dimensions like the family, authority, conflict and friends. Finally he examines private dimensions like personal mythos, one's personal career, sex, eros and love, and the inner life. Throughout these pages Brand uses not only the four philosophers analyzed in Part One, but also such figures as Gadamer, Derrida, Habermas, Wittgenstein, and many others. His writing is a guide not only to philosophical problems, but also to vast areas of current literature; long quotations abound. The original problem of the life-world comes from Husserl, but Brand is especially aware of the dimension of action, choice and work, so his interpretation of the life-world is able to illuminate aspects that Husserl touched only lightly. Brand's independent mind is able to cut across philosophical schools and uncover common elements in them, such as his excellent comparison of Wittgenstein and phenomenology on the irreducible character of insight as the beginning of philosophy. He considers the life-world as not the final ground of experience; rather the process of distinguishing is more basic, and is the final term beyond which we cannot move. Brand claims Husserl does not go beyond the life-world to this, and that only the late Merleau-Ponty and Wittgenstein appreciate it; but are not Husserl's doctrines of parts and wholes and empty and filled intentions a treatment of the process of distinguishing and identifying? And don't these themes take Husserl beyond the life-world? The wide range and multitudinous sources of this book make exhaustive treatment of each area impossible, and on some points Brand merely gives sketches of what might be done. Other themes are very thoroughly analyzed, and all sections are interesting and provocative. This book should be not only an important contribution to phenomenology, but also one of the most helpful volumes in the philosophical discussions of the years to come.--R. S. (shrink)
In 1951 these editors began publication of a monumental critical edition of Plotinus' works. Now Oxford is making available a slightly revised editio minor in its series of classical texts. The textual revision is accompanied by a long list of variants. Thus this text, which includes Porphyry's life of Plotinus and Enneads I-III, supersedes the earlier editio major. The critical apparatus is considerably reduced, but should prove adequate to all but serious textual scholars. This edition will probably remain the (...) standard Plotinus text for many years.—R. J. W. (shrink)
Papers collected in this volume were originally presented at a symposium held at the University of Pennsylvania in December, 1968 and revised in the light of discussion at the symposium for publication. The contributors hold different views about the role played by induction in theories of knowledge and rational belief but many of the papers are conciliatory, reflecting no doubt a good deal of helpful communication at the symposium. For example, Frederic Schick's clearly written and informative lead article considers subjectivist, (...) empiricist, and pragmatist theories of rational belief, arguing that they are compatible theories relevant to different types of issues. Marshall Swain follows with an article which presents a general framework within which rules of rational acceptance can be constructed. An exchange between Isaac Levi and Richard Jeffrey shows that advocates of theories of acceptance and theories of partial belief may be defending complementary and not mutually exclusive theories. In the remaining three essays Henry Kyburg Jr., Gilbert Harman, and Keith Lehrer defend their own distinctive views about the nature of inductive inference and rational belief. Kyburg traces difficulties in some theories to the acceptance of the principle of conjunction which he rejects. Harman and Lehrer both see the relation of inductive inference to explanation as crucial to understanding the former and they develop theories along different lines which make use of this relation. A long and useful bibliography was prepared for the symposium by Ralph L. Slaght and revised for publication in the volume.--R. H. K. (shrink)
The title of this edition is quite misleading and the edition is disappointing. The Dietz Verlag edition of Marx's Grundrisse der Kritik der politischen Ökonomie is over a thousand pages long. Virtually unavailable until recently, it is considered by many to be among Marx's most interesting and important works. It consists primarily of Marx's unpublished writings from 1857-1858. A serious study of the Grundrisse must be made for a full understanding of Marx. It places the discussion of the 'young' (...) vs. the 'old' Marx on a new level of sophistication because here is a work written by the mature Marx that is pervaded with Hegelian themes. It contains highly interesting speculations about the Asiatic mode of production, the theory of surplus value, and the possibility of the development of a middle class, which is not available in Marx's other writings. McLellan, Nicolaus, Marcuse, Lichtheim, and others have noted the importance of the Grundrisse for gaining new insight into Marx's thought. Unfortunately, McLellan has translated what amounts to about one tenth of this work in a manner which while it whets one's intellectual appetite is not very useful for pursuing or pinning down Marx's reflections in the Grundrisse. These bits and fragments will have to do until we have a full translation of the Grundrisse.--R. J. B. (shrink)
John J. McDermott, who has already distinguished himself by publishing the best available selection of William James' writings, has now performed the same task for Josiah Royce. Although Josiah Royce is normally classified as one of the American "classical" philosophers, he is probably the least read of these philosophers. These skillfully edited volumes may go a long way to making Royce's comprehensive and complex thought available. There is a brief introduction in which McDermott nicely conveys a "feel" for the (...) man and his thought, especially as it manifests the spirit of American philosophy. The selections are grouped under a number of headings, each preceded with a short commentary. McDermott has deliberately aimed at comprehensiveness, and I suspect even those familiar with some of Royce's work may be surprised by the variety of his investigations. There is a sixty-page annoted bibliography prepared by Ignas K. Skrupsklelis which is the most complete bibliography of Royce's writings available. Although there are no selections from The Problem of Christianity, the University of Chicago Press has recently published this book with a new introduction by John E. Smith. The Letters of Josiah Royce is also being published by Chicago. Painstaking, intelligent editing of philosophic texts is all too rare in our time. McDermott is to be congratulated on a superb job, and the University of Chicago Press is to be praised for undertaking this extensive publication of Royce's work.--R. J. B. (shrink)
This book is a study of meaning and meaninglessness which takes as its point of departure a discussion of sentences like "The theory of relativity is blue" which some philosophers call category mistakes and which this author calls type crossings. His answer to the question of the basis of the meaninglessness of such sentences differs from most currently fashionable ones. For example, he argues in separate chapters against the view that the basis for the meaninglessness of sentences involving type crossings (...) is in the fact that they are ungrammatical. He also rejects the view that this basis is in the fact that the sentences violate certain rules of language His answer is that type crossings are meaningless because they designate unthinkable propositions. He then devotes two long and crucial chapters to an attempt to elaborate on the notion of unthinkability. His approach is more complicated than this brief summary would suggest for he distinguishes between accidental and essential properties and relations, requiring different criteria for type crossings involving accidental or essential attributes. Drange's views run against the grain of much contemporary philosophizing about meaning, e.g., his essentialism, his advocacy of a kind of synthetic a priori and his emphasis on thinkability over rules of language. But he comes to these positions by exposing what he takes to be difficulties in alternative views, so that his views are always challenging. Aside from its main theses, the book looks into topics about meaning and type crossings which other writers have scarcely noticed or discussed. For example, he tries to come to grips with the largely uncharted region of type crossings involving relational properties and those involving types other than types of things.--R. H. K. (shrink)
The import of this long and careful study is primarily negative: the author attempts to show that the various theories which contemporary analysts have held against the a priori are not tenable; he leaves us not with still another proposal but with the conviction that this philosophical ground is still fertile.--R. P.
Kolakowski, who was born in 1927, has long been known as one of the most original and exciting post-Stalinist Polish intellectuals. And this collection of essays show why he deserves this reputation. There is wit, irony, insight, and radical critique evidenced throughout. His discussion of "Karl Marx and the Classical Definition of Truth" provides a fresh, provocative, and fascinating interpretation of Marx's epistemology. His criticism of Stalinist Marxism and the analogies he draws with the history of theology are among (...) the most intelligent and incisive criticisms developed. There is a theme that runs throughout these essays--it is the theme of the individual's moral responsibility in contemporary society. His criticism of orthodoxy including Marxist orthodoxy is pervaded by the spirit of rational criticism that preserves and fosters the best in the Marxist tradition. The book unfortunately lacks a badly needed introduction and there are no bibliographical references for many of the papers.--R. J. B. (shrink)
Originally published as a long essay in Mind and Cosmos, Volume II of the University of Pittsburgh series in the philosophy of science, this study admirably fills the need for an elementary survey of problems in the area of probability and induction. But it is more than an introduction. The author is working on the general thesis that Bayes' theorem of the probability calculus holds the key to the understanding of scientific inference. Guided by this idea he attempts to (...) salvage what he thinks is of value in various current theories of probability and scientific inference, particularly, the frequency theory of probability as defended by Reichenbach, Popper's views on the falsifiability of theories, and Hanson's work on the logic of discovery. These attempts to develop a theory in the latter part of the book follow discussions of Hume's critique of induction, the probability calculus and five past and present interpretations of the calculus. This is a well-written and challenging introduction to the field.—R. H. K. (shrink)
The "History of Ideas" mode of presentation here finds an especially congenial application to the notion of evolution. Among the fifteen papers, five of A. O. Lovejoy's on the idea of evolution are reprinted with some modifications. Glass contributes a long study of seventeenth and eighteenth century theories of species.--R. F. T.
R James Long - Essays in Medieval Philosophy and Theology in Memory of Walter H. Principe, CSB: Fortresses and Launching Pads - Journal of the History of Philosophy 45:3 Journal of the History of Philosophy 45.3 495-497 Muse Search Journals This Journal Contents Reviewed by R. James Long Fairfield University James R. Ginther and Carl N. Still, editors. Essays in Medieval Philosophy and Theology in Memory of Walter H. Principe, CSB: Fortresses and Launching Pads. Aldershot-Burlington: Ashgate, 2005. Pp. (...) ix + 177. Cloth, $99.95. Sir Maurice Powicke famously wrote that one must live in the valley before one can appreciate the height of the mountains. Walter Principe spent much of his academic career editing and studying lesser and long-neglected masters of theology before ascending the heights represented by the thought of the Common Doctor. It is fitting, therefore, that this collection of studies to honor his memory—with contributions from colleagues and former students—reflect the full range of.. (shrink)
The first part of this long two-part work is a history of the development of the modern theory of the atom from Dalton to the present. The second part offers philosophical reflections on this history beginning with a discussion of epistemological implications and following that with an account of ontological implications. The author deals with familiar questions about the reality of micro-particles, complementarity, indeterminism, the role of the observer and other topics. But he also discusses topics like holism, atomic (...) order, the intelligibility of matter and others which are less commonly discussed by philosophers in connection with modern physical theories. The author, who is trained in physics as well as philosophy, has a flair for metaphysical speculation as well as wide knowledge of contemporary physical theory. He stresses the novelties of the quantum conception of matter, argues against its critics like Bohm, and sees it as presenting a radically new conception of atomic order despite its commitment to indeterminism. The views of Werner Heisenberg, who encouraged the author to write the book and who read it in manuscript, have clearly influenced the author, although they do not dominate his thinking.--R. H. K. (shrink)
Seventy six papers collected together to honor Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, the philosopher-statesman of India. The selection of papers reflects Radhakrishnan's life long task of encouraging a genuine encounter between the thought of the east and the west.—R. J. B.
Treatises of this length and care are rarely written today and in the course of Cumming's explorations there is an enormous richness of insight, commentary, and analysis of the history of liberal thought. But at the same time, it is difficult to keep the main themes of this study in clear focus. One gets the impression that Cumming originally set out to understand liberal thought as expressed by John Stuart Mill and found himself digging into origins. Dig he does, taking (...) into account in his intellectual journey through Western Civilization: Polybius, Cicero, Augustine, Petrarch, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Bentham, James Mill and many others along the way. One can learn a great deal about this western political tradition by following Cumming's patient explications and critiques. In the foreground is always John Stuart Mill and at times Cumming fosters the misimpression that Mill culminates this entire tradition. Yet Cumming's attitude toward Mill is strangely ambivalent and toward the end of this study, Cumming seems to be more fascinated with the stages of Mill's development and his mental crisis rather than with the integrity and coherence of his political philosophy. Liberal political thought has recently come in for a severe polemical thrashing and Cumming's study might have been a detailed, eloquent defense of this tradition. But the study is deficient in attempting to show how liberal thought can directly meet the numerous criticisms that have been raised from many sides. In the preface, Cumming reports that the manuscript was on the way to the typesetters during the upheaval at Columbia when police arrived on campus. This episode symbolizes the strange feeling one has that the book is dated by the time it appeared. Despite its weaknesses as an apology for liberal thought, it excels in making us sensitive to its long and vital history.--R. J. B. (shrink)
This anthology collects readings from important nineteenth and early twentieth century figures who contributed to the philosophy of science before that discipline emerged in the last 40 years as an area of study in its own right. It begins with a seldom-read selection by Kant ) and ends with a selection from Bridgman's The Logic of Modern Physics. Each selection is preceded by a three-page biography of the author together with a bibliography of his major writings and some writings on (...) his work. Many familiar names appear, e.g., Mill, Mach, Pearson, Hertz, Poincare, Peirce, Duhem, Russell, Whitehead, and Campbell. But there are others represented whose actual writings are not so familiar to many students of the philosophy of science, e.g., J. F. W. Herschel, William Whewell, Hermann Von Helmholtz, J. B. Stallo, Emile Boutroux and William Ostwald. With the exception of Stallo, the writings of these figures have been long out of print. In one case, a selection from Ludwig Boltzmann on the nature of mechanics, the editor has translated the selected passage into English expressly for this volume. A wide range of topics are considered in the readings: physical laws, theories, induction, observation, space, time, and others; but, as the nature of the case requires, the focus of attention is on classical science. For this reason most existing courses in the philosophy of science could use this collection only as a supplementary text. But it would function well in such a role. Moreover, specialized courses in the history of philosophical thinking about science will find it very useful.--R. H. K. (shrink)
This book contains two essays by Pöggeler, one forty-five pages long with the same title as the book, the other some thirty pages long entitled "Heidegger’s Topology of Being." In the first essay, "politics" is taken in an admittedly wider sense than usual, because it refers to the establishment of a sense of life for a people over a historical period; it is a Politik des Volkes. The agents of such political action are the poets and thinkers who (...) found a new age. Pöggeler examines Heidegger’s analysis of our own period, the place of technology in society, and the question of how authentic appreciation of being can still occur. The question of politics is then moved beyond that of a people, to "politics in the horizon of this world-civilization". In treating this subject Pöggeler analyzes many other themes in Heidegger with his customary skill and lucidity. The second essay is an examination of the questions Heidegger raises in regard to what stands beneath any division of kinds or areas of being. There are fifteen long footnotes which fill almost fifty pages. They are very interesting and cover much literature about Heidegger, and also examine at some length Heidegger’s attitude toward National Socialism in 1933 and in the years following. The chief question one can address to Pöggeler and to Heidegger, of course, is whether human association on the scale of a Volk or on the scale of world-civilization is still political in anything but a metaphorical sense.—R.S. (shrink)
The recent book Rush Rhees on Religion and Philosophy contains a stimulating collection of writin~s by Rush Rhees on a variety of topics in the philosophy of religion. Comprising accounts of personal, religious and moral struggles, these essays provide a refreshing change from the often dry, overly technical approach to philosophy writing. Despite spanning more than thirty years, Rhees' s essays disclose a fairly consistent philosophy.of religion with a clear emphasis. Since he was Wittgenstein's student and long-time friend as (...) well as a literary executor ofWittgenstein's writings, it is not surprising that Rhees's comments on the philosophy of religion reveal a distinctly Wittgensteinian approach, both in content and style. Moreover, Rhees's particular way of doing philosophy of religion seems, in retrospect, to have set the course that subsequent philosophy of religion of the Wittgensteinian type would take. (shrink)
This is the second volume in the Library of Living Philosophers which has appeared in German; it follows the familiar pattern of the other volumes in this series. The long autobiographical sketch sets the scene for a philosophy asserting that it deals with a reality which, ultimately, cannot be known unequivocally but must be realized in the philosopher's existence and which, accordingly, always presents reality in a definite historical perspective. The articles are introduced by an illuminating explanation of some (...) of the key terms in Jasper's work. Some of these are discussed in critical detail in the next six articles. Four further pieces place Jaspers in his historical situation, although not with that detail and completeness which Jaspers' historicism would seem to demand. These papers deal with Jaspers' relation to Max Weber, Judaism, Nietzsche and Kierkegaard. A final, rather extensive section explores the relations between Jaspers' central position and such peripheral philosophical doctrines as political philosophy, aesthetics, criticism, the philosophies of history and religion. This volume is particularly successful in mirroring the philosophy which it tries to clarify and celebrate, for it brings to light select aspects of a philosophy which maintains that reality can only be illuminated in part, but can never be known as a whole. Appropriate to the philosophy which tends to identify the philosopher's knowing with his being, Jaspers' final reply to his critics not only makes his ideas clearer but reveals a person of impressive human stature.--R. G. S. (shrink)
It is a shame that this volume which was started a decade ago should have been so long in preparation. The result is that many of the critical papers have been superseded by more recent investigations. Nevertheless, there are a number of respects in which this is an extremely valuable book. It contains Carnap's autobiography, written in the direct and careful style that is so characteristic of his work. Carnap also patiently and systematically answers the objections raised by his (...) critics. And there is an invaluable annotated bibliography of his writings. But the dominant impression of the volume as a whole is that of summing up the contribution and limitations of one of the twentieth-century's most important and influential philosophers.—R. J. B. (shrink)
The expository material in this book is ninety-nine pages long and covers very sketchily the philosophy of language, classical logic, symbolic logic, informal fallacies, the philosophy of science, and probability theory. To supplement the text material, the authors have included 142 pages of exercises, which may be removed from the book by tearing along the perforations. The authors have deliberately written a brief text so that the instructor "will be left free to elaborate according to his own judgment as (...) his classroom situation warrants." Eight pages are devoted to quantificational logic. The high price of this paperback text does not seem to be warranted by either the brief expository material, the removable pages of exercises, or the uniqueness of this approach.—R. L. S. (shrink)
The import of this long and careful study is primarily negative: the author attempts to show that the various theories which contemporary analysts have held against the a priori are not tenable; he leaves us not with still another proposal but with the conviction that this philosophical ground is still fertile.--R. P.
Precision cell signaling activities of reactive electrophilic species (RES) are arguably among the most poorly‐understood means to transmit biological messages. Latest research implicates native RES to be a chemically‐distinct subset of endogenous redox signals that influence cell decision making through non‐enzyme‐assisted modifications of specific proteins. Yet, fundamental questions remain regarding the role of RES as bona fide second messengers. Here, we lay out three sets of criteria we feel need to be met for RES to be considered as true cellular (...) signals that directly mediate information transfer by modifying “first‐responding” sensor proteins. We critically assess the available evidence and define the extent to which each criterion has been fulfilled. Finally, we offer some ideas on the future trajectories of the electrophile signaling field taking inspiration from work that has been done to understand canonical signaling mediators. (shrink)