The watershed for the latter discipline was the establishment of the Hegelian philosophy, with its thesis that the history of philosophy was philosophy itself. Hegel's lectures on the history of philosophy appeared posthumously but his influence was already confirmed. The first really inclusive history of science which is of more than antiquarian interest, William Whewell's History of the Inductive Sciences, was published almost simultaneously in 1837. For Whewell as well as for Hegel, history and philosophy were connected; Whewell's History was (...) written in close relation to his Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences, which he in one place called the "moral" of the other work. Surveying the astonishing advances of science, especially in the previous century and a half, he expressly aimed to clarify the method responsible for them. Philosophically, he was a curious hybrid between Kant and Francis Bacon, seeing in scientific development the progressive articulation of certain a priori "Ideas." But despite these early and vigorous beginnings, the study of the history of science has generally lagged behind that of its sister study, perhaps because the impetus of scientific expansion and specialization has discouraged scientists from examination of their own intellectual antecedents, and at the same time has debarred non-scientists from sufficient technical understanding to perform the task adequately. The edges of the old wound between the Natur- and the Geisteswissenschaften healed apart rather than together, to the detriment of both. (shrink)
The character of these books should be less unexpected when one notes that their author, A. C. Crombie, is not only lecturer in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University College, London, but is also the editor of The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. One would expect, then, that his approach to the problems of the philosophy of science would naturally proceed through the history of science, and that he would be less interested in elaborating the (...) details of a particular doctrine in the philosophy of science than in viewing the events of the history of science in their larger aspects, aspects which merge insensibly into the phases of the history of philosophy. And just this is the case. (shrink)
PHILOSOPHY has always made use of its past. In doing so, it resembles literature more than it does the natural sciences, which generally regard the scientific concepts and systems of history as superseded, useless hulks drifting in the wake of empirical and conceptual progress. Literature, on the contrary, cherishes the monumental achievements of previous ages; they retain value and importance, and can be turned to for interest and for inspiration again and again. Philosophy has sometimes claimed to take a radical (...) turn which leaves the past behind, but in the long run the past returns to assert itself as living and useful. There are fashions in philosophy, of course, but it is never safe to regard any major philosophic system or approach as forever refuted and surpassed. As witness, we see how the current analytic movement is rediscovering pragmatism, once thought hopelessly old hat. (shrink)
One cannot blame all this on the dead hand of, say, the Aristotelian conception of First Philosophy, although that and other classic positions have played their part. It can hardly be held that those who doctrinally profess allegiance to the conception of philosophy as created in the image of science have helped much more than they have hindered. Accepting the older, orthodox account of the course of previous philosophic thinking as detached from science, they have been happier demonstrating their predecessors' (...) vulnerability than in reshaping that account fruitfully. There is a vacuity about the pronouncements of men so eminent-and diverse--as Bertrand Russell and John Dewey, which renders their extensive influence unfortunate in many respects. (shrink)
“Here is the first Kant-biography in English since Paulsen’s and Cassirer’s only full-scale study of Kant’s philosophy. On a very deep level, all of Cassirer’s philosophy was based on Kant’s, and accordingly this book is Cassirer’s explicit coming to terms with his own historical origins. It sensitively integrates interesting facts about Kant’s life with an appreciation and critique of his works. Its value is enhanced by Stephen Körner’s Introduction, which places Cassirer’s Kant-interpretation in its historical and contemporary context.”—Lewis White Beck (...) “The first English translation of a 60-year-old classic intellectual biography. Those readers who know Kant only through the first _Critique_ will find their understanding of that work deepened and illuminated by a long explication of the pre-critical writings, but perhaps the most distinctive contribution is Cassirer’s argument that the later _Critiques_, and especially the _Critique of Judgment_, must be understood not as merely applying the principles of the first to other areas but as subsuming the latter into a larger and more comprehensive framework.”—Frederick J. Crown, _The Key Reporter _“_Kant’s Life and Thought_ is that rare achievement: a lucid and highly readable account of the life and work of one of the world’s profoundest thinkers. Now for the first time available in an admirable English translation, the book introduces the reader to two of the finest minds in the history of philosophy.”—Ashley Montagu. (shrink)
IN HIS ESSAY The Paradox of Socrates," Gregory Vlastos paints a vivid and moving portrait of Socrates, or, as he puts it: "the Platonic Socrates, or, to be more precise, the Socrates of Plato’s early dialogues." That the man who emerges from these early dialogues is something very like the actual Socrates is Vlastos’s opinion. He argues, with great plausibility, that the Xenophontic Socrates is not a man who, on the one hand, could have provoked the Athenians into indicting him (...) and convicting him for subversion of Athenian faith and morals, and on the other could have aroused the devotion of an Alcibiades. The question of the "authentic" Socrates is the kind of question which simply does not admit of any ultimate solution, so there will always be divergent opinions, but regardless of whether or not Plato does portray the real Socrates as he knew him, it is certainly the Platonic Socrates who has exercised the decisive influence down through the centuries. Therefore irrespective of whether one accepts Vlastos’s argument, it is worthwhile examining what Vlastos distills from the dialogues as his "recreation of the thought and character of the man," and testing it for its adequacy. (shrink)
Christology seems to fall fairly clearly into two divisions. The first is concerned with the truth of the two propositions: ‘Christ is God’ and ‘Christ is a man’. The second is concerned with the mutual compatibility of these propositions. The first part of Christology tends to confine itself to what is sometimes called ‘positive theology’: that is to say, it is largely given over to examining the Jons revelationis —let us not prejudge currently burning issues by asking what this is—to (...) see what evidence can be found for the truth of these propositions. Clearly, the methods used will be above all those of New Testament exegesis. The second part of Christology will necessarily consist entirely of that speculative theology which is contrasted with positive theology. Even if the earliest speculation on this topic is to be found in the New Testament itself and thus becomes fair game for the exegetes, any attempt to relate the primary truths, ‘Christ is God’ and ‘Christ is a man’, to eachother is a work of reflection, and in the terminology I am using speculative. (shrink)
One dark and rainy night, Yuso sexually assaults and tortures Zelan. In escaping from the scene of his crime, he falls heavily and becomes an impotent paraplegic. Instead of treating his fate as divine retribution for his wicked acts, Yuso sees it as sheer bad luck. He shows no remorse for what he has done, and vainly hopes that he will recover his powers, which he now treats as involuntarily hoarded resources to be used on less rainy days. In the (...) presence of others, he pretends that he has turned over a new leaf. He asks for religious and educational books, hoping to make up for his poor education and deprived social background. But he immediately discards them when he is alone in favor of the pornographic magazines which he has bribed a nurse to smuggle in for him. His deception and various obscene acts committed in the hospital are exposed; by the time he comes up for trial, everyone knows that he is still a lustful, sadistic, and unrepentant man. Most retributivists have a sufficient justification for punishing Yuso independently of the social consequences of his punishment. Two features of the case might cause some difficulties. First, Yuso has already experienced considerable suffering and deprivation both before and after his crime, and retributivists might disagree about the relevance of the suffering to his punishment. Secondly, Yuso is unrepentant, and it is unlikely that punishment will change him. This might, as we shall see, create a problem for those who think that the justifying aim of punishment is the moral reform of the offender. (shrink)
We propose a way to achieve across-population sharing within the authors' model in a way that is plausibly in accordance with human evolution, and also a simple way to capture ecological structure. Finally, we briefly reflect on the model's scope and limits in modeling linguistic communication.
It is a pleasure for me to give this opening address to the Royal Institute of Philosophy Conference on ‘Explanation’ for two reasons. The first is that it is succeeded by exciting symposia and other papers concerned with various special aspects of the topic of explanation. The second is that the conference is being held in my old alma mater , the University of Glasgow, where I did my first degree. Especially due to C. A. Campbell and George Brown there (...) was in the Logic Department a big emphasis on absolute idealism, especially F. H. Bradley. My inclinations were to oppose this line of thought and to espouse the empiricism and realism of Russell, Broad and the like. Empiricism was represented in the department by D. R. Cousin, a modest man who published relatively little, but who was of quite extraordinary philosophical acumen and lucidity, and by Miss M. J. Levett, whose translation of Plato's Theaetetus formed an important part of the philosophy syllabus. (shrink)
Sher's notion of deserved punishment has unacceptable implications. It does not justify punishing some serious wrongdoers, who are unwilling to commit lesser wrongs, more severely than minor offenders. It requires victim-inflicted punishments which repeat the wrongdoings, with the roles reversed. But if Sher moves away from such victim-inflicted punishments, then his theory should treat wrongdoers like tort-feasors who have to pay monetary compensations to their victims.
There is a strong tendency in the scholarly and sub-scholarly literature on terrorism to treat it as something like an ideology. There is an equally strong tendency to treat it as always immoral. Both tendencies go hand in hand with a considerable degree of unclarity about the meaning of the term ‘terrorism’. I shall try to dispel this unclarity and I shall argue that the first tendency is the product of confusion and that once this is understood, we can see, (...) in the light of a more definite analysis of terrorism, that the second tendency raises issues of inconsistency, and even hypocrisy. Finally, I shall make some tentative suggestions about what categories of target may be morally legitimate objects of revolutionary violence, and I shall discuss some lines of objection to my overall approach. (shrink)
I have been arguing, for almost thirty years now, that emotions have been unduly neglected in philosophy. Back in the seventies, it was an argument that attracted little sympathy. I have also been arguing that emotions are a ripe for philosophical analysis, a view that, as evidenced by the Manchester 2001 conference and a large number of excellent publications, has now become mainstream. My own analysis of emotion, first published in 1973, challenged the sharp divide between emotions and rationality, insisted (...) that we reject the established notion that the emotions are involuntary, and argued, in a brief slogan, that ‘emotions are judgments.’ Since then, although the specific term ‘judgment’ has come under considerable fire and my voluntarist thesis continues to attract incredulousness the general approach I took to emotions has been widely accepted in both philosophy and the social sciences. When Paul Griffiths took on what he misleadingly characterized as ‘propositional attitude’ theories of emotion as the enemy of all that was true and scientifically worthy, I knew that we had made it. Such ferocious abuse is surely a sign that we had shifted, in Kuhnian terms, from being revolutionary to becoming the ‘normal’ paradigm. The current counter-revolution of affect programmes and neuro-reductionism says a lot about who we are and how far we have come. (shrink)
It is characteristic of realists to separate ontology from epistemology and of idealists to mix the two things up. By ‘idealists’ here I am mainly referring to the British neo-Hegelians but the charge of mixing up ontology and epistemology can be made against at least one ‘subjective idealist’, namely Bishop Berkeley, as his wellknown dictum ‘esse ispercipi’ testifies. The objective idealists rejected the correspondence theory of truth and on the whole accepted a coherence theory. The qualification is needed here because (...) H. H. Joachim, in The Nature of Truth, found the coherence theory unable to deal with the problem of error. (shrink)
Many libertarians believe that self-ownership is a separate matter from ownership of extra-personal property. “No-proviso” libertarians hold that property ownership should be free of any “fair share” constraints, on the grounds that the inability of the very poor to control property leaves their self-ownership intact. By contrast, left-libertarians hold that while no one need compensate others for owning himself, still property owners must compensate others for owning extra-personal property. What would a “self” have to be for these claims to be (...) true? I argue that both of these camps must conceive of the boundaries of the self as including one's body but no part of the extra-personal world. However, other libertarians draw those boundaries differently, so that self-ownership cannot be separated from the right to control extra-personal property after all. In that case, property ownership must be subject to a fair share constraint, but that constraint does not require appropriators to pay compensation. This view, which I call “right libertarianism,” differs importantly from the other types primarily in its conception of the self, which I argue is independently more plausible. (shrink)
It has frequently been lamented that while the human species has made immense progress in science it is nevertheless ethically backward. This ethical backwardness is all the more dangerous because the advanced state of scientific knowledge has made available a technology with which we are able to destroy ourselves—indeed a technology which may have got so much out of hand that we may not even have the capacity to prevent it from destroying us.