Eoin Carney | : Continuing on from recent discussions on the overlap between Paul Ricoeur’s philosophy and care ethics, this article will aim to clarify the status of practice in Ricoeur’s work. I will argue that even though Ricoeur’s philosophy is indeed marked by its “desire for a foundation,” as care ethicist Joan Tronto has pointed out, this aim is more of a fragile wager than a principle, and is always at risk of being overturned by practices and other (...) worldviews. I will demonstrate this point by arguing that Ricoeur’s hermeneutic approach to practice leads to the view that objective methods of knowledge and explanation are always grounded by the broader hermeneutic task of practical understanding and care for the self; in moral reasoning, Ricoeur’s analysis of the conflict between respect for the rule and respect for persons results in his prioritizing of respect for the singular other rather than the universal rule, meaning that the other can always disrupt and reorient universal or foundational modes of reasoning; and finally within healthcare relations Ricoeur aims to develop an alternative understanding of respect that places it in a dialectical relation with care. These practice-oriented readings of hermeneutics, morality, and respect aim to open up a dialogue between care ethics and philosophical approaches that have often been placed outside of care ethics. | : Poursuivant les récentes discussions concernant les recoupements entre la philosophie de Paul Ricoeur et les éthiques du care, cet article a pour objectif de clarifier le statut de la pratique dans l’oeuvre de Ricoeur. Je soutiendrai que même si la philosophie ricoeurienne est bien marquée par un « désir d’un fondement », ainsi que l’éthicienne du care Joan C. Tronto le souligne, cet objectif repose plus sur un pari que sur un véritable principe, et risque toujours d’être renversé par les pratiques ou d’autres visions du monde. Je démontrerai cela en soutenant trois arguments. 1) L’approche herméneutique de Ricoeur concernant la pratique mène à penser que les méthodes objectives de connaissance et d’explication sont toujours soutenues par une tâche herméneutique plus large de la compréhension pratique et du souci de soi. 2) En ce qui a trait au raisonnement moral, l’analyse de Ricoeur sur le conflit entre le respect de la règle et le respect de la personne accorde la priorité au respect de l’autre singulier plutôt que de la règle universelle. Ainsi, l’autre peut toujours perturber et réorienter l’universel ou les modes fondateurs du raisonnement. 3) Réfléchissant aux relations thérapeutiques, Ricoeur tend à suggérer une nouvelle compréhension du respect qui se place dans une relation dialectique avec le souci. Ces lectures – de l’herméneutique, de la moralité et du respect – orientées vers la pratique ouvrent la voie à un dialogue entre les éthiques du care et des approches philosophiques que l’on considère souvent éloignées de celles-ci. (shrink)
Santa Barbara County exhibits some of the highest rates of food insecurity in California, as well as in the United States. Through ethnographic research of three low-income, predominantly Latino communities in Santa Barbara County, this study examined the degree to which households had been experiencing heightened levels of food insecurity since the economic recession and ensuing coping strategies, including gender-specific repercussions and coping strategies. Methods included administering a survey with 150 households and conducting observation and unstructured interviews at various local (...) food-centered venues. Results indicated that households from the three communities were experiencing heightened levels of food insecurity and that all three communities were employing diversification of procurement, adjustments to a reduced or limited food budget, reliance on food assistance, and revitalization of the home as a site of domestic food production and preparation as coping strategies. The results also suggested that women suffered disproportionately higher psychological and physical costs associated with compounding crises. In conclusion, the experiences narrated by low-income households reflect a form of citizenship that appears compromised by a host of variables perceived to exist outside the realm of local control. Shifting toward an operational framework of food sovereignty may allow these communities to become more resilient in the face of future political, environmental, social, and economic stressors. (shrink)
This paper discusses the significance of gender-based conflicts for thefailure of Gambian irrigated rice projects. In particular, it illustrateshow resource control of a gendered crop, rice, shifts from females to maleswith the development of pump-irrigated rice projects. Irrigation imposes aradically different labor regime on household producers, demanding thatthey intensify labor for year-round cultivation. Yet, the Gambian farmingsystem evolved for a five month agricultural calendar, in which women wereaccorded specific land and labor rights. The need to restructure familylabor, specifically skilled female (...) labor, to meet the cultivation demandsof pump irrigation is crucial for understanding the pattern of gender-basedconflicts in Gambian rice schemes. The case study illustrates thatirrigation involves more than technology transfer. Appropriate irrigationdemands sensitivity to the social structure of household production systems. The paper concludes by emphasizing the centrality of gender issuesfor improving food security in sub-Saharan Africa. (shrink)
One of the more compelling features of Denis Dutton’s The Art Instinct is its theoretical parsimony. Utilizing what essentially amounts to one explanatory principle—that of Darwinian selection—Dutton advances a theory of aesthetics that is at once general enough to account for cross-cultural variations in artistic production and sufficiently nuanced to promote insights into individual artworks. In doing this, Dutton’s work could not offer a greater contrast to some of the more vocal trends in contemporary aesthetic theory, where ponderous theorizing and (...) rebarbative jargons have violently opposed the idea—otherwise so modest—that aesthetic activities might draw on the evolved capacities of the human imagination. On .. (shrink)
Having lost 73% of its purchasing power and 42% of it gross national product since the fall of the Soviet Union, Cuba faces a crisis with the modern agricultural system it had developed over the past 30 years. The response has been to put an alternative model into practice. The successes and problems associated with this model are discussed.
In this article, we discuss the current trend of authoritarianism in the Islamic world, especially as embodied in the institution of taqlid, whereby a lay person blindly follows a religious scholar. We will compare this to the mystical tradition of Ibn 'Arabî as well as the early esoteric Shî'ite tradition, where a much more "rebellious" type of Islam was offered and provided purviews of pluralism and universalism that challenge authoritarian closures of interpretation in relationship with God. By way of further (...) comparison, we will also attend to the writings of some liberal and pluralistic thinkers in the Muslim world. (shrink)
Considerable attention has focussed on the potential of indigenous agricultural knowledge for sustainable development. Drawing upon fieldwork on the soil and water management principles of rice farming systems in Senegambia, this paper examines the potential of the traditional system for a sustainable food security strategy. Problems with pumpirrigation are reviewed as well as previous efforts in swamp rice development. It is argued that sustainability depends on more than ecological factors and in particular, requires sensitivity to socio-economic parameters such as the (...) labor demands of the food security strategy, the sexual division of labor, and food pricing policies. (shrink)
Justifying involuntary psychiatric treatment on the basis of a judgment that a person lacks capacity is usually expressed in terms of a person’s ability to make a decision about his or her health and treatment. Typically, this relates to the ability to refuse treatment. Exactly what “capacity” means, however, and how one determines when another individual lacks capacity, or lacks sufficient capacity, in this context is particularly controversial, with the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities insisting (...) that involuntary treatment be abandoned altogether and capacity tests avoided.Capacity is a concept that has multiple meanings and applications across different disciplines and... (shrink)
I defend the conserved quantity theory of causation against two objections: firstly, that to tie the notion of "cause"to conservation laws is impossible, circular or metaphysically counterintuitive ; and secondly, that the conser quantity theory entails an undesired notion of identity through time. My defence makes use of an important meta-philosophical distinction between empirical analysis and conceptual analysis. My claim is that the conserved quantity theory of causation must be understood primarily as an empirical, not a conceptual, analysis of causation.