Reminiscences of Peter, by P. Oppenheim.--Natural kinds, by W. V. Quine.--Inductive independence and the paradoxes of confirmation, by J. Hintikka.--Partial entailment as a basis for inductive logic, by W. C. Salmon.--Are there non-deductive logics?, by W. Sellars.--Statistical explanation vs. statistical inference, by R. C. Jeffre--Newcomb's problem and two principles of choice, by R. Nozick.--The meaning of time, by A. Grünbaum.--Lawfulness as mind-dependent, by N. Rescher.--Events and their descriptions: some considerations, by J. Kim.--The individuation of events, by D. Davidson.--On properties, by (...) H. Putnam.--A method for avoiding the Curry paradox, by F. B. Fitch.--Publications (1934-1969) by Carl G. Hempel (p. -270). (shrink)
Reorienting the Political examines the reception of two controversial German philosophers, Carl Schmitt and Leo Strauss, in the Chinese-speaking world. This volume explores the powerful resonance of both thinkers in Chinese political thought from a cross-cultural and interdisciplinary perspective.
We argue that neuroeconomics should be a mechanistic science. We defend this view as preferable both to a revolutionary perspective, according to which classical economics is eliminated in favour of neuroeconomics, and to a classical economic perspective, according to which economics is insulated from facts about psychology and neuroscience. We argue that, like other mechanistic sciences, neuroeconomics will earn its keep to the extent that it either reconfigures how economists think about decision-making or how neuroscientists think about brain mechanisms underlying (...) behaviour. We discuss some ways that the search for mechanisms can bring about such top-down and bottom-up revision, and we consider some examples from the recent neuroeconomics literature of how varieties of progress of this sort might be achieved. (shrink)
Editor James Fetzer presents an analytical and historical introduction and a comprehensive bibliography together with selections of many of Carl G. Hempel's most important studies to give students and scholars an ideal opportunity to appreciate the enduring contributions of one of the most influential philosophers of science of the 20th century.
Not all models are explanatory. Some models are data summaries. Some models sketch explanations but leave crucial details unspecified or hidden behind filler terms. Some models are used to conjecture a how-possibly explanation without regard to whether it is a how-actually explanation. I use the Hodgkin and Huxley model of the action potential to illustrate these ways that models can be useful without explaining. I then use the subsequent development of the explanation of the action potential to show what is (...) required of an adequate mechanistic model. Mechanistic models are explanatory. (shrink)
Kempner. You do not have to testify, Professor Schmitt, if you do not want to, and if you think you are incriminating yourself. But if you do testify, then I would be grateful if you would be absolutely truthful, would neither conceal nor add anything. Is that your wish? Schmitt: Yes, of course. Kempner: And if I come to something you might find self-incriminating, you can simply say you prefer to remain silent. Schmitt: I have already been interrogated by the (...) C.I.C. and in the camp. I would be glad to tell you all I know. However, I would like to know what I am being blamed with. (shrink)
Intentionality is one of the central problems of modern philosophy. How can a thought, action or belief be about something? Sachs draws on the work of Wilfrid Sellars, C. I. Lewis and Maurice Merleau-Ponty to build a new theory of intentionality that solves many of the problems faced by traditional conceptions. In doing so, he sheds new light on Sellars’s influential arguments concerning the ‘Myth of the Given’ and shows how we can build a productive discourse between American pragmatism, analytical (...) philosophy and European phenomenology. -/- . (shrink)
Carl F. Craver investigates what we are doing when we use neuroscience to explain what's going on in the brain. When does an explanation succeed and when does it fail? Craver offers explicit standards for successful explanation of the workings of the brain, on the basis of a systematic view about what neuroscientific explanations are.
In this paper I argue against one variety of contextualism about aesthetic predicates such as “beautiful.” Contextualist analyses of these and other predicates have been subject to several challenges surrounding disagreement. Focusing on one kind of contextualism— individualized indexical contextualism —I unpack these various challenges and consider the responses available to the contextualist. The three responses I consider are as follows: giving an alternative analysis of the concept of disagreement ; claiming that speakers suffer from semantic blindness; and claiming that (...) attributions of beauty carry presuppositions of commonality. I will argue that none of the available strategies gives a response which both satisfactorily explains all of the disagreement -data and is plausible independent of significant evidence in favor of contextualism. I conclude that individualized indexical contextualism about the aesthetic is untenable, although this does not rule out alternative contextualist approaches to the aesthetic. (shrink)
The question of how to lead a happy and meaningful life has been at the heart of philosophical debate since time immemorial. Today, however, these questions seem to be addressed not by philosophers but self–help gurus, who frantically champion the individual′s quest for self–expression and self–realization; the desire to become authentic. Against these new age sophistries, How to Stop Living and Start Worrying tackles the question of ′how to live′ by forcing us to explore our troubling relationship with death. For (...) Critchley, philosophy begins with the question of finitude and with his understanding of a key classical theme – that to philosophize is to learn how to die. Learning how to accept both our own and others′ mortality as a part of life also raises the question of how to love. Critchley argues that the act of love requires us to give up something of ourselves, to lose control so as to be open to the demands of love. We will never be equal to this demand and so we are brought face to face with our own limitations – one form of which is what Critchley calls our ′originary inauthenticity′. By scrutinizing the very nature of humour, Critchley explores what we need to laugh at ourselves and presents the need to confront the inescapable ridiculousness of life. Reflecting on the work of over 20 years, this book provides a unique, witty and erudite introduction to the thought of Simon Critchley. It includes a revealing biographical conversation with Critchley and a fascinating debate with the critically acclaimed novelist Tom McCarthy about the nature of authenticity. Taken together the conversations give an intimate portrait of one of the most lucid, provocative and engaging philosophers writing today. (shrink)
Critics of luck egalitarianism have claimed that, far from providing a justification for the public insurance functions of a welfare state as its proponents claim, the view objectionably abandons those who are deemed responsible for their dire straits. This article considers seven arguments that can be made in response to this ‘abandonment objection’. Four of these arguments are found wanting, with a recurrent problem being their reliance on a dubious sufficientarian or quasi-sufficientarian commitment to provide a threshold of goods unconditionally. (...) Three arguments succeed, showing that luck egalitarians have good reasons for assisting ‘negligent victims’ on account of changes that may occur in an individual between the time of their choice and their subsequent disadvantage, bad option luck, and doubts about free will and responsibility. Luck egalitarianism is therefore shown to offer strong support for public insurance. (shrink)
Kant says patently conflicting things about infinity and our grasp of it. Infinite space is a good case in point. In his solution to the First Antinomy, he denies that we can grasp the spatial universe as infinite, and therefore that this universe can be infinite; while in the Aesthetic he says just the opposite: ‘Space is represented as a given infinite magnitude’. And he rests these upon consistently opposite grounds. In the Antinomy we are told that we can have (...) no intuitive grasp of an infinite space, and in the Aesthetic he says that our grasp of infinite space is precisely intuitive. (shrink)
Here a distinguished American historian challenges the belief that the eighteenth century was essentially modern in its temper. In crystalline prose Carl Becker demonstrates that the period commonly described as the Age of Reason was, in fact, very far from that; that Voltaire, Hume, Diderot, and Locke were living in a medieval world, and that these philosophers “demolished the Heavenly City of St. Augustine only to rebuild it with more up-to-date materials.” In a new foreword, Johnson Kent Wright looks (...) at the book’s continuing relevance within the context of current discussion about the Enlightenment. “Will remain a classic—a beautifully finished literary product.”—Charles A. Beard, _American Historical Review_ “_The Heavenly City of the Eighteenth-Century Philosophers _remains_ _one of the most distinctive American contributions to the historical literature on the Enlightenment.... [It] is likely to beguile and provoke readers for a long time to come.”—Johnson Kent Wright, from the foreword. (shrink)
David Miller has objected to the cosmopolitan argument that it is arbitrary and hence unfair to treat individuals differently on account of things for which they are not responsible. Such a view seems to require, implausibly, that individuals be treated identically even where (unchosen) needs differ. The objection is, however, inapplicable where the focus of cosmopolitan concern is arbitrary disadvantage rather than arbitrary treatment. This 'unfair disadvantage argument' supports a form of global luck egalitarianism. Miller also objects that cosmopolitanism is (...) unable to accommodate special obligations generated by national membership. Cosmopolitanism can, however, accommodate many special obligations to compatriots. Those which it cannot accommodate are only morally compelling if we assume what the objection claims to prove - that cosmopolitanism is mistaken. Cosmopolitanism construed as global luck egalitarianism is therefore able to withstand both of Miller's objections, and has significant independent appeal on account of the unfair disadvantage argument. (shrink)
The automation of online social life is an urgent issue for researchers and the public alike. However, one of the most significant uses of such technologies seems to have gone largely unnoticed by the research community: religion. Focusing on Islamic Prayer Apps, which automatically post prayers from its users’ accounts, we show that even one such service is already responsible for millions of tweets daily, constituting a significant portion of Arabic-language Twitter traffic. We argue that the fact that a phenomenon (...) of these proportions has gone unnoticed by researchers reveals an opportunity to broaden the scope of the current research agenda on online automation. (shrink)
This is the first full-length study in English of twentieth-century Germany's most influential authoritarian right-wing political theorist, Carl Schmitt, that focuses on the central place of his attack on the liberal rule of law. This is also the first book in any language to devote substantial attention to Schmitt's subterranean influence on some of the most important voices in political thought in the United States after 1945.
It is standardly assumed that a religious commitment needs to be based upon religious belief, if it is to be rationally acceptable. In this thesis, that assumption is rejected. I argue for the feasibility of belief-less religion, with a focus on the approach commonly known as “non-doxasticism”. According to non-doxasticism, a religious life might be properly based on some cognitive attitude weaker than belief, like hope, acceptance or belief-less assumption. It provides a way of being religious open exclusively to the (...) agnostic. This thesis consists of an introductory essay and five independent papers. The aim of the introductory essay is to provide a general background and set the stage for the discussion in the papers. Its first major part is about the rationality of religious belief. I assess three major ways of providing rational justification for religious belief: natural theology, the reformed epistemology of A. Plantinga and W. Alston, and voluntarism as advocated by B. Pascal and W. James. I highlight some of the most serious problems associated with these approaches, and argue that these problems are enough to warrant an exploration of belief-less alternatives. The second major part of the introductory essayintroduces belief-less religion and its two main forms: fictionalism and non-doxasticism. Both approaches are presented in some detail, including important accounts and current developments. While I would not deny thatboth approaches can be defended as intellectually feasible and rationally acceptable ways of being religious, I also explain why I think non-doxasticism is to be preferred over fictionalism. Paper I and II concerns the account of non-doxastic religion offered by J. L. Schellenberg. Paper I raises some problems for Schellenberg’s analysis of propositional faith, and presents a way of handling these problems by making faith occasional. Paper II argues that non-doxasticism should be focused on traditional religion rathar than Schellenberg’s simple ultimism. Paper III and IV concerns non-doxasticism on a more general level. Paper III argues for the superiority of non-doxasticism over fictionalism. It contains the argument for exclusive availability, according to which only non-doxasticism is rationally available to the pro-religious agnostic. Paper IV explores the notion of rational, non-doxastic faith, and argues for three desiderata any such faith must meet. Unlike the other papers, Paper V is primarily connected to the first part of the introductory essay, and it concerns the scope and limit of natural theology. It is tentatively argued that perfect being theism lies outside the scope of natural theology, and that its most prominent arguments at best support some kind of deism. (shrink)
What does it mean to think about technology philosophically? Why try? These are the issues that Carl Mitcham addresses in this work, a comprehensive, critical introduction to the philosophy of technology and a discussion of its sources and uses. Tracing the changing meaning of "technology" from ancient times to our own, Mitcham identifies the most important traditions of critical analysis of technology: the engineering approach, which assumes the centrality of technology in human life and the humanities approach, which is (...) concerned with its moral and cultural boundaries. Mitcham bridges these two traditions through an analysis of discussions of engineering design, of the distinction between tools and machines, and of engineering science itself. He looks at technology as it is experienced in everyday life--as material objects (from kitchenware to computers), as knowledge ( including recipes, rules, theories, and intuitive "know-how"), as activity (design, construction, and use), and as volition (knowing how to use technology and understanding its consequences). By elucidating these multiple aspects, Mitcham establishes criteria for a more comprehensive analysis of ethical issues in applications of science and technology. This book will guide anyone wanting to reflect on technology and its moral implications. (shrink)
This book deals with foundational issues in the theory of the nature of action, the intentionality of action, the compatibility of freedom of action with determinism, and the explantion of action. Ginet's is a volitional view: that every action has as its core a 'simple' mental action. He develops a sophisticated account of the individuation of actions and also propounds a challenging version of the view that freedom of action is incompatible with determinism.
Written in the intense political and intellectual tumult of the early years of the Weimar Republic, Political Theology develops the distinctive theory of sovereignty that made Carl Schmitt one of the most significant and controversial ...
This article explores the Rawlsian goal of ensuring that distributions are not influenced by the morally arbitrary. It does so by bringing discussions of distributive justice into contact with the debate over moral luck initiated by Williams and Nagel. Rawls’ own justice as fairness appears to be incompatible with the arbitrariness commitment, as it creates some equalities arbitrarily. A major rival, Dworkin’s version of brute luck egalitarianism, aims to be continuous with ordinary ethics, and so is (a) sensitive to non-philosophical (...) beliefs about free will and responsibility, and (b) allows inequalities to arise on the basis of option luck. But Dworkin does not present convincing reasons in support of continuity, and there are compelling moral reasons for justice to be sensitive to the best philosophical account of free will and responsibility, as is proposed by the revised brute luck egalitarianism of Arneson and Cohen. While Dworkinian brute luck egalitarianism admits three sorts of morally arbitrary disadvantaging which correspond to three forms of moral luck (constitutive, circumstantial, and option luck), revised brute luck egalitarianism does not disadvantage on the basis of constitutive or circumstantial luck. But it is not as sensitive to responsibility as it needs to be to fully extinguish the influence of the morally arbitrary, for persons under it may exercise their responsibility equivalently yet end up with different outcomes on account of option luck. It is concluded that egalitarians should deny the existence of distributive luck, which is luck in the levels of advantage that individuals are due. (shrink)
How should we decide which inequalities between people are justified, and which are unjustified? One answer is that such inequalities are only justified where there is a corresponding variation in responsible action or choice on the part of the persons concerned. This view, which has become known as 'luck egalitarianism', has come to occupy a central place in recent debates about distributive justice. This book is the first full length treatment of this significant development in contemporary political philosophy. Each of (...) its three parts addresses a key question concerning the theory. Which version of luck egalitarian comes closest to realizing luck egalitarian objectives? Does luck egalitarianism succeed as a view of egalitarian justice? And is it sound as an account of distributive justice in general? The book provides a distinctive answer to each of these questions, along the way engaging with the leading theorists identified in the literature as luck egalitarians, such as Richard Arneson, G. A. Cohen, and Ronald Dworkin, as well as the most influential critics, including Elizabeth Anderson, Marc Fleurbaey, Susan Hurley, Samuel Scheffler, and Jonathan Wolff. (shrink)
This paper presents a typology of human actions, based on Aristotle’s kinesis–energeia dichotomy and on a formal elaboration (with some refinement) of the Vendler–Kenny classificatory schemes for action types (or action verbs). The types introduced are defined throughout by inferential criteria, in terms of what here are referred to as “modal-temporal expressions” (‘MT-terms’). Examples of familiar categories analysed in this way are production and maintenance, but the procedure is meant to offer a basis for defining various other commonsense categories. Among (...) the more theoretical categories introduced are “Aristotelian projects”, i.e. actions defined in terms of Aristotle’s conceptions of movement/change, as well as “abstract projects”, in which the agent ensures that something changes from not being a fact to being a fact, and “conditional agency”, which involves actions that are to be performed when/if certain conditions come to be fulfilled. A category like “starting an action” is itself inferentially defined here in MT-terms, and so, inter alia, are proceeding with, finishing, stopping and interrupting an action. There is also a demonstration of how actions of one type may be converted into those of other types, where this is a matter of the way they are “seen” or described. There is also an implication to the effect that some of these distinctions may be useful for formulating certain critical insights regarding modern life. (shrink)
Genuine religion always involves the worship of what is genuinely ultimate. Religion, worship, and ultimate reality are thus indissolubly related. The task of reflective thought in this domain is to distinguish what is sound from what is spurious in religion; to characterise the meaning of religious devotion; and to attempt to articulate the nature of the ultimate reality to which men's worship is directed.
In this book, Carl Cranor utilizes material from ethics, philosophy of law, epidemiology, tort law, regulatory law, and risk assessment to argue that the evidentiary standards for science used in the law to control toxics ought to be ...
“It has been our fate as a nation not to have ideologies,” Richard Hofstadter famously wrote, “but to be one.” Defining that “American ideology” or “American creed” obsessed scholars of the consensus era, who celebrated Americans’ allegiance to a limited liberal vocabulary of rights, freedoms, and markets. The cultural transformations begun in the 1960s seemed to question the very idea of a unitary culture or creed, but some historians responded by exploring alternative ideological founding myths to the liberal consensus. Over (...) the ensuing decades scholars mounted formidable efforts to support republicanism or millennial Christianity as challengers, but liberalism proved a resilient foe. And it seemed to have contemporary history on its side: during the Reagan revolution of the century's final decades the classic liberal combination of scaled-down government and free markets carried the day as Americans’ ideal if not their reality. The Lockean liberal tradition that Louis Hartz described a half-century earlier still appeared the only game in town, although scholars continued to argue over its terms, history, and boundaries. (shrink)
Classical statistical mechanics posits probabilities for various events to occur, and these probabilities seem to be objective chances. This does not seem to sit well with the fact that the theory’s time evolution is deterministic. We argue that the tension between the two is only apparent. We present a theory of Humean objective chance and show that chances thus understood are compatible with underlying determinism and provide an interpretation of the probabilities we find in Boltzmannian statistical mechanics.
Ronald Dworkin maintains that value is unitary, in the sense that different values do not conflict. This article resists this ‘hedgehog’ view with reference to the values of equality and utility. These appear to yield conflicting prescriptions in cases where one possible distribution gives different individuals the same amount of advantage, and the other contains an unequal distribution of a greater overall amount of advantage. Hedgehogs might respond to such a case in two ways. First, they might claim that equality (...) and utility are not truly in conflict. However, this claim seems implausible on our ordinary concepts of these values, and Dworkin does not provide grounds for revising our concepts. Second, they might deny that one of these values – utility – is a genuine value. However, one of the two aspects of Dworkin’s fundamental principle of equal concern appears to be supportive of utility, and he offers no good arguments for his preferred strategy of accommodating this aspect of equal concern within the value of equality. Furthermore, the alternative ‘fox’ view, which recognizes equality and utility as conflicting values, each accommodating one aspect of equal concern, has the advantage that it stays truer to familiar moral concepts. (shrink)
In his most recent work, McDowell argues that the oscillation between the Myth of the Given and coherentism can be avoided only by an ‘equipoise’ between the objective and the subjective. However, I argue that Adorno’s ‘cognitive utopia’ is a genuine 4th option distinct from equipoise and from the oscillation between the Myth of the Given and coherentism. McDowell’s inability to acknowledge the cognitive utopia is traced to his overly abstract conception of the disenchantment of nature, in contrast to Adorno’s (...) emphasis on the domination of nature. This difference is traced to their different interpretations of Hegel. (shrink)
One of the most significant political philosophers of the twentieth century, Carl Schmitt is a deeply controversial figure who has been labeled both Nazi sympathizer and modern-day Thomas Hobbes. First published in 1938, The Leviathan in the State Theory of Thomas Hobbes used the Enlightenment philosopher’s enduring symbol of the protective Leviathan to address the nature of modern statehood. A work that predicted the demise of the Third Reich and that still holds relevance in today’s security-obsessed society, this volume (...) will be essential reading for students and scholars of political science. “Carl Schmitt is surely the most controversial German political and legal philosopher of this century. . . . We deal with Schmitt, against all odds, because history stubbornly persists in proving many of his tenets right.”— Perspectives on Political Science “[A] significant contribution. . . . The relation between Hobbes and Schmitt is one of the most important questions surrounding Schmitt: it includes a distinct, though occasionally vacillating, personal identification as well as an association of ideas.”— Telos. (shrink)
Mr. Wellman’s highly original contribution to the relatively new field of justification in ethics consists of characterizing the different ways in which ethical statements can be challenged and showing how each sort of challenge can be met by an appropriate response, enabling reasonable men to appropriately discuss or reflect on ethical issues. In developing his unique, systematic, methodology of ethics, Mr. Wellman has, first, rigorously reviewed and refuted the main arguments for the view of the nature of all reasoning as (...) deductive and, second, convincingly presented arguments for the existence of nondeductive evidences in ethics. Mr. Wellman’s broad definition of reasoning and his rejection of the identification of justification with reasoning reveals new dimensions of justification which will have wide implications in other areas of human speculation. (shrink)
According to all-luck egalitarianism, the differential distributive effects of both brute luck, which defines the outcome of risks which are not deliberately taken, and option luck, which defines the outcome of deliberate gambles, are unjust. Exactly how to correct the effects of option luck is, however, a complex issue. This article argues that (a) option luck should be neutralized not just by correcting luck among gamblers, but among the community as a whole, because it would be unfair for gamblers as (...) a group to be disadvantaged relative to non-gamblers by bad option luck; (b) individuals should receive the warranted expected results of their gambles, except insofar as individuals blamelessly lacked the ability to ascertain which expectations were warranted; and (c) where societal resources are insufficient to deliver expected results to gamblers, gamblers should receive a lesser distributive share which is in proportion to the expected results. Where all-luck egalitarianism is understood in this way, it allows risk-takers to impose externalities on non-risk-takers, which seems counterintuitive. This may, however, be an advantage as it provides a luck egalitarian rationale for assisting ‘negligent victims’. (shrink)
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