The Enkratic Principle enjoys something of a protected status as a requirement of rationality. I argue that this status is undeserved, at least in the epistemic domain. Compliance with the principle should not be thought of as a requirement of epistemic rationality, but rather as defeasible indication of epistemic blamelessness. To show this, I present the Puzzle of Inconsistent Requirements, and argue that the best way to solve this puzzle is to distinguish two kinds of epistemic evaluation – requirement and (...) appraisal. This allows us to solve the puzzle while accommodating traditional motivations for thinking of the Enkratic Principle as a requirement of rationality. (shrink)
One of the twentieth-century's most exciting and challenging intellectuals, Gilles Deleuze's writings covered literature, art, psychoanalysis, philosophy, genetics, film and social theory. This book not only introduces Deleuze's ideas, it also demonstrates the ways in which his work can provide new readings of literary texts. This guide goes on to cover his work in various fields, his theory of literature and his overarching project of a new concept of becoming.
I argue for the unexceptionality of evidence about what rationality requires. Specifically, I argue that, as for other topics, one’s total evidence can sometimes support false beliefs about this. Despite being prima facie innocuous, a number of philosophers have recently denied this. Some have argued that the facts about what rationality requires are highly dependent on the agent’s situation, and change depending on what that situation is like (Bradley, 2019). Others have argued that a particular subset of normative truths, those (...) concerning what epistemic rationality requires, have the special property of being ‘fixed points’ – it is impossible to have total evidence that supports false belief about them (Smithies, 2012; Titelbaum, 2015). Each of these kinds of exceptionality permit a solution to downstream theoretical problems that arise from the possibility of evidence supporting false belief about requirements of rationality. However, as I argue here, they incur heavy explanatory burdens that we should avoid. (shrink)
Introduction: The problem of vitalism : active/passive -- Brain, system, model : the affective turn -- Vitalism and theoria -- Inorganic art -- Inorganic vitalism -- The vital order after theory -- On becoming -- Living systems, extended minds, gaia -- Conclusion.
This paper describes a method for analyzing a corpus of descriptions collected through micro-phenomenological interviews. This analysis aims at identifying the structure of the singular experiences which have been described, and in particular their diachronic structure, while unfolding generic experiential structures through an iterative approach. After summarizing the principles of the micro-phenomenological interview, and then describing the process of preparation of the verbatim, the article presents on the one hand, the principles and conceptual devices of the analysis method and on (...) the other hand several dimensions of the analysis process: the modes of structural unfolding of generic structures, the mutual guidance of the processes of structural and experiential unfolding, the tracking of analysis processes, and finally the assessment of analysis results. (shrink)
Cinema, thought and time -- Deleuze's cinema books -- Technology -- Essences -- Space and time -- Bergson, time, and life -- The movement-image -- The history of time and space and the history of cinema -- The movement-image and semiotics -- Styles of sign -- The whole of movement -- Image and life -- Becoming-inhuman, becoming imperceptible -- The deduction of the movement-image -- Art and time -- Destruction of the sensory motor apparatus and the spiritual automaton -- Time (...) and money -- Art and history -- Monument -- Framing, territorialization, and the plane of composition -- Politics and the origin of meaning -- Transcending life and the genesis of sense -- Beyond symbolic and imaginary -- Shit and money -- Exchange, gift, and theft -- The fiction of mind -- Collective investment and group fantasy -- The time of man -- The intense germinal influx. (shrink)
This article presents an interview method which enables us to bring a person, who may not even have been trained, to become aware of his or her subjective experience, and describe it with great precision. It is focused on the difficulties of becoming aware of one’s subjective experience and describing it, and on the processes used by this interview technique to overcome each of these difficulties. The article ends with a discussion of the criteria governing the validity of the descriptions (...) obtained, and then with a brief review of the functions of these descriptions. (shrink)
Can we make mistakes about what rationality requires? A natural answer is that we can, since it is a platitude that rational belief does not require truth; it is possible for a belief to be rational and mistaken, and this holds for any subject matter at all. However, the platitude causes trouble when applied to rationality itself. The possibility of rational mistakes about what rationality requires generates a puzzle. When combined with two further plausible claims – the enkratic principle, and (...) the claim that rational requirements apply universally – we get the result that rationality generates inconsistent requirements. One popular and attractive solution to the puzzle denies that it is possible to make rational mistakes about what rationality requires. I show why (contra Titelbaum (2015b), and Littlejohn (2015)) this solution is doomed to fail. (shrink)
This article offers a critique and reformulation of the concept of empathy as it is currently used in the context of medicine and medical care. My argument is three pronged. First, that the instrumentalised notion of empathy that has been common within medicine erases the term’s rich epistemological history as a special form of understanding, even a vehicle of social inquiry, and has instead substituted an account unsustainably structured according to the polarisations of modernity. I suggest that understanding empathy by (...) examining its origins within the phenomenological tradition, as a mode of intersubjective understanding, offers a different and profitable approach. Secondly, I argue that the appropriation of empathy in medicine means that, ironically, empathy can function as a technique of pastoral power, in which virtue, knowledge and authority remain with the doctor. And thirdly, empathy is in danger of being resourced as a substitute for equity and funding within health systems. I conclude however with hope for the productive possibilities for empathy. (shrink)
Challenging previous interpretations of Levinas that gloss over his use of the feminine or show how he overlooks questions raised by feminists, Claire Elise Katz explores the powerful and productive links between the feminine and religion in Levinas’s work. Rather than viewing the feminine as a metaphor with no significance for women or as a means to reinforce traditional stereotypes, Katz goes beyond questions of sexual difference to reach a more profound understanding of the role of the feminine in (...) Levinas’s conception of ethical responsibility. She combines feminist interpretations of Levinas with interpretations that focus on his Jewish writings to reveal that the feminine provides an important bridge between his philosophy and his Judaism. Katz’s reading of Levinas’s conception of the feminine against the backdrop of discussions of women of the Hebrew bible points to important shifts in contemporary philosophy toward the creation of life and care for the other. (shrink)
A familiar part of debates about supererogatory actions concerns the role that cost should play. Two camps have emerged: one claiming that extreme cost is a necessary condition for when an action is supererogatory, while the other denies that it should be part of our definition of supererogation. In this paper, I propose an alternative position. I argue that it is comparative cost that is central to the supererogatory and that it is needed to explain a feature that all accounts (...) agree is central to the very notion of supererogation: optionality. Perhaps because of this agreement on its importance, few attempts have been made to clarify and explain the notion of optionality. I argue that giving an account of the optionality of supererogatory requires drawing a line between doing the bare minimum permissible and going beyond the bare minimum and that this line ought to be drawn based on comparative cost of alternative permissible acts. Having outlined my account and motivated it, I discuss and reject two concerns that might be raised: firstly, that it is extreme cost, not comparative cost, that matters and, secondly, that in fact no cost is needed for an act to be supererogatory. (shrink)
Reexamining Emmanuel Levinas’s essays on Jewish education, Claire Elise Katz provides new insights into the importance of education and its potential to transform a democratic society, for Levinas’s larger philosophical project.
The well-known experiments of Nisbett and Wilson lead to the conclusion that we have no introspective access to our decision-making processes. Johansson et al. have recently developed an original protocol consisting in manipulating covertly the relationship between the subjects’ intended choice and the outcome they were presented with: in 79.6% of cases, they do not detect the manipulation and provide an explanation of the choice they did not make, confirming the findings of Nisbett and Wilson. We have reproduced this protocol, (...) while introducing for some choices an expert guidance to the description of this choice. The subjects who were assisted detected the manipulation in 80% of cases. Our experiment confirms Nisbett and Wilson’s findings that we are usually unaware of our decision processes, but goes further by showing that we can access them through specific mental acts. (shrink)
In this new and original book, Claire Armon-Jones examines the concept of affect and various philosophical positions which attempt to define and characterize it: the standard view, the neo-cognitivist view, and the objectual thesis. She contends that these views radically distort our understanding of affect by disregarding modes of affect which fail to conform to the accounts they each employ. Against the standard and neo-cognitivist views she argues that the notions they use to characterize affect are neither necessary nor (...) sufficient; and against the objectual thesis she further argues that affective states exhibit degrees of independence from the concept of an object. She develops a new theory of the varieties of affect that explains their cognitive nature, their felt aspect, their special logic and the relationship between their objectless and object-directed forms. Armon-Jones concludes by suggesting that her arguments call into question certain assumptions about the rationality and moral status of affect and require a revision of the conception of the good in affect. (shrink)
Is normative uncertainty like factual uncertainty? Should it have the same effects on our actions? Some have thought not. Those who defend an asymmetry between normative and factual uncertainty typically do so as part of the claim that our moral beliefs in general are irrelevant to both the moral value and the moral worth of our actions. Here I use the consideration of Jackson cases to challenge this view, arguing that we can explain away the apparent asymmetries between normative and (...) factual uncertainty by considering the particular features of the cases in greater detail. Such consideration shows that, in fact, normative and factual uncertainty are equally relevant to moral assessment. (shrink)
Interdisciplinary research is frequently viewed as an important component of the research landscape through its innovative ability to integrate knowledge from different areas. However, support for interdisciplinary research is often strategic rhetoric, with policy-makers and universities frequently adopting practices that favour disciplinary performance. We argue that disciplinary and interdisciplinary research are complementary, and we develop a simple framework that demonstrates this for a semi-permanent interdisciplinary research field. We argue that the presence of communicating infrastructures fosters communication and integration between disciplines (...) and the interdisciplinary research field to generate innovative knowledge. We apply this to the experience of economic history in Australia in the second half of the twentieth century to demonstrate the life cycle of a semi-permanent interdisciplinary research field. (shrink)
This article presents a framework intended to provide pension funds with practical guidance for the successful implementation of a sustainable investing strategy. The framework is developed with respect to the UK and US pension funds (as these share certain common legal characteristics) and focuses on the changes that pension funds adopting such a strategy should make to their investment strategies and governance (particularly through the formulation and articulation of clear investment mission and strong investment beliefs). The article proceeds with a (...) review of socially responsible investment (SRI) and more recent responsible investment (RI) literature, in the context of growing public awareness (but not necessarily understanding) of the concept of sustainability ("Literature review of SRI field: SRI, RI and sustainable investing" section). It then examines the literature on pension fund governance, arguing the need for more detailed practical guidance for funds moving towards sustainable investing, especially for those implementing a sustainable investing strategy ("Anglo-American pension fund governance" section). It presents the framework for the practical implementation of sustainable investing in the "Sustainable investing framework" section. Finally, we review the relevant Anglo-American legal backdrop, outlining how pension funds adopting our framework should approach their fiduciary obligations, and then discussing potential regulatory enablers of sustainable investment ("Legal context: barriers to and enablers of sustainable investing" section). (shrink)
Standing in San Marco Cathedral in Venice, you immediately notice the exquisitely decorated spandrels: the triangular spaces bounded on either side by adjoining arches and by the dome above. You would be forgiven for seeing them as the starting point from which to understand the surrounding architecture. To do so would, however, be a mistake. It is a similar mistaken inference that evolutionary biologists have been accused of making in assuming a special adaptive purpose for such biological features as fingerprints (...) and chins. I argue that a mistake of just this sort is being made by ethicists who appeal to the intrinsic value of supererogatory acts in their efforts to make space for supererogation in ethical theory. Many cases of supererogatory action are simply spandrels: by-products of uncontroversial commitments elsewhere in our moral thought. This is not to downplay their value but rather to show that their value need not be the justification for making room for the supererogatory. I demonstrate this by examining two areas: rights and the distribution of burdens among a group. My argument has significance for those who take themselves to be defends of the possibility of supererogatory actions, as well as those who are committed to the contrary and those who believe themselves to be indifferent on the matter. (shrink)
Over the last decade, legal recognition of same-sex relationships in Canada has accelerated. By and large, same-sex cohabitants are now recognised in the same manner as opposite-sex cohabitants, and same-sex marriage was legalised in 2005. Without diminishing the struggle that lesbians and gay men have endured to secure this somewhat revolutionary legal recognition, this article troubles its narrative of progress. In particular, we investigate the terms on which recent legal struggles have advanced, as well as the ways in which resistance (...) to the legal recognition has been expressed and dealt with. We argue that to the extent that feminist critiques of marriage, familial ideology, and the privatisation of economic responsibility are marginalised, conservative and heteronormative discourses on marriage and family are reinforced. Our case studies include two pivotal moments in the quest for legislative recognition of same-sex relationships: the Hearings of the Canadian House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights on Bill C-23, The Modernization of Benefits and Obligations Act, in 2000 and the hearings on Same-Sex Marriage in 2003. We find that the debates operated within a narrow paradigm that bolstered many existing hierarchies and exacerbated conditions for those who are economically disadvantaged. (shrink)
The critical realist and Bourdieusian conceptions of action fundamentally disagree on a number of fronts: the synthetic versus dualistic relationship between structure and agency; the social nature of the self/body; the link between morphogenesis and reflexivity. Despite these differences, this article argues that re-reading Bourdieu’s theories with attention to some of the core tenets of critical realism can provide insights into how the habitus is capable of reflexivity and social change. In particular, this article reworks Bourdieu’s theory of habitus by (...) suggesting that social selves are always situated at the intersection of multiple and competing social locations and that the habitus itself is always layered. Reflexivity arises from horizontal disjunctures and vertical disjunctures. (shrink)
In this paper we list the various criticisms that have been formulated against introspection, from Auguste Comte denying that consciousness can observe itself, to recent criticisms of the reliability of first person descriptions. We show that these criticisms rely on the one hand on poor knowledge of the introspective process, and on the other hand on a naïve conception of scientific objectivity. Two kinds of answers are offered: the first one is grounded on a refined description of the process of (...) becoming aware of one's experience and describing it, the second one relies on a comparison with the methods of the experimental sciences. We conclude the article by providing a renewed definition of 'the truth' of a first person description. (shrink)
This article is devoted to the description of the experience associated with listening to a sound. In the first part, we describe the method we used to gather descriptions of auditory experience and to analyse these descriptions. This work of explicitation and analysis has enabled us to identify a threefold generic structure of this experience, depending on whether the attention of the subject is directed towards the event which is at the source of the sound, the sound in itself, considered (...) independently from its source, the felt sound. In the second part of the article, we describe this structure. The third part is devoted to a discussion of these results and the paths they open up in various fields of theoretical and applied research. (shrink)
Two experiments examined similarities and differences in the effects of consciously and unconsciously perceived rewards on the active maintenance of goal-relevant information. Participants could gain high and low monetary rewards for performance on a word span task. The reward value was presented supraliminally or subliminally at different stages during the task. In Experiment 1, rewards were presented before participants processed the target words. Enhanced performance was found in response to higher rewards, regardless whether they were presented supraliminally or subliminally. In (...) Experiment 2, rewards were presented after participants processed the target words, i.e., during maintenance. Performance increased in response to relatively high rewards when they were presented subliminally, but decreased when they were presented supraliminally. We conclude that both consciously and unconsciously perceived rewards boost resources supporting the maintenance of task-relevant information. Conscious processing of rewards can, however, heavily interfere with an ongoing maintenance process and impair performance. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to show through the concrete example of epileptic seizure anticipation how neuro-dynamic analysis and “pheno-dynamic” analysis may guide and determine each other. We will show that this dynamic approach to epileptic seizure makes it possible to consolidate the foundations of a cognitive non pharmacological therapy of epilepsy. We will also show through this example how the neuro-phenomenological co-determination could shed new light on the difficult problem of the “gap” which separates subjective experience from neurophysiological (...) activity. (shrink)
The controversy surrounding targeted killings represents a crisis of conscience for policymakers, lawyers, philosophers and leading military experts grappling with the moral and legal limits of the war on terror. The book examines the legal and philosophical issues raised by government efforts to target suspected terrorists without giving them the safeguards of a fair trial.
We can imagine a world in which ectogenesis provides a safe gestating space that eliminates maternal morbidity and mortality while maximising healthy outcomes for babies. In this world, women, no longer physically—and visibly—pregnant, are no longer economically, socially or physically disadvantaged due to the potential for pregnancy and birth. Because everyone can access the same technology, women are able to work without fear of pregnancy-related discrimination or restrictions, and health disparities among individuals in gestation and birth based on socioeconomic status (...) are eliminated. This imagining allows us to explore the ethical and social underpinnings of such a world, and consider how to achieve it in our current paradigm. Having explored the freedom and equality that is possible in an ideal hypothetical where all have equal access to such technologies, we can now imagine that same world without ectogenesis: women, no longer economically, socially or physically disadvantaged due to pregnancy and birth, despite still becoming pregnant. Such is the potential political perspective and provocation that can be spurred on by discussion of ectogenesis. As Cavaliere argues, the technological reality of ectogenesis may not achieve the freedom and equality that …. (shrink)
This essay explores three deconstructive concepts – archive, anthropocene, and auto-affection – across two registers. The first is the register of what counts as readability in general, beyond reading in its narrow and actualized sense.. The second register applies to Derrida today, and what it means to read the corpus of a philosopher and how that corpus is governed by proper names. I want to suggest that the way we approach proper names in philosophy and theory is part of a (...) broader problem of our relation to what it is to read, and how readability intertwines with the human. (shrink)
There has been some debate as to whether or not it is possible to keep a promise, and thus fulfil a duty, to supererogate. In this paper, I argue, in agreement with Jason Kawall, that such promises cannot be kept. However, I disagree with Kawall’s diagnosis of the problem and provide an alternative account. In the first section, I examine the debate between Kawall and David Heyd, who rejects Kawall’s claim that promises to supererogate cannot be kept. I disagree with (...) Heyd’s argument, as it fails to get to the heart of the problem Kawall articulates. Kawall’s argument however fails to make clear the problem with promising to supererogate because his discussion relies on the plausibility of the following claim: that supererogatory actions cannot also fulfil obligations. I argue that this view is mistaken because there are clear examples of supererogatory actions that also fulfil obligations. In the final section, I give my alternative account of the problem, identifying exactly what is wrong with fulfilling a duty, and thus keeping a promise, to supererogate. My diagnosis emphasises the importance of identifying non-supererogatory actions when it comes to understanding the way in which supererogatory actions go above and beyond the call of duty. (shrink)
The objective of this article is to study a deeply pre- reflective dimension of our subjective experience. This dimension is gestural and rhythmic, has precise transmodal sensorial submodalities, and seems to play an essential role in the process of emergence of all thought and understanding. In the first part of the article, using examples, we try to draw the attention of the reader to this dimension in his subjective experience. In the second part, we attempt to explain the difficulties and (...) describe the interior process of becoming aware of it. Then we describe the structural characteristics of this dimension, and the different types of 'interior gestures' which enable us to connect ourselves with it. Finally, we formulate a genetic hypothesis about the role of this dimension in cognition, on the basis of which we suggest some research paths in the neuroscientific, educational and existential domains. (shrink)
The notion of supererogation—going above and beyond the call of duty—is typically discussed in a moral context. However, in this paper we argue for the existence of rationally supererogatory actions: that is, actions that go above and beyond the call of rational duty. In order to establish the existence of such actions, we first need to overcome the so-called paradox of supererogation: we need to provide some explanation for why, if some act is rationally optimal, it is not the case (...) that we are rationally required to carry out that act. We argue that a response to this ‘paradox’ can be found by reflecting on normative conflicts: cases where what is best according to some normative domain is different from what is best according to some other normative domain. (shrink)
Comparing mortuary rituals across 57 representative cultures extracted from the Human Relations Area Files, this paper demonstrates that kin of the deceased engage in behaviours to prepare the deceased for disposal that entail close and often prolonged contact with the contaminating corpse. At first glance, such practices are costly and lack obvious payoffs. Building on prior functionalist approaches, we present an explanation of corpse treatment that takes account of the unique adaptive challenges entailed by the death of a loved one. (...) We propose that intimate contact with the corpse provides the bereaved with extensive veridical cues of death, thereby facilitating acceleration of a grieving process that serves to recategorize the deceased as no longer a relationship partner, opening the door to relationship replacement and a return to social functioning. The benefits of exposure to such cues are tempered by the costs of exposure to cues of disease risk, a balance that in part explains the relative rarity of highly invasive mortuary practices that exacerbate the latter factor. We conclude by discussing implications of our model for contemporary mortuary practices in the developed world. (shrink)
The aim of this chapter is to address the role of memory in past-life convictions. Although it is commonly accepted in the modern media - and popular western culture more generally - that people believe they have lived before because the memory contains detailed verifiable facts, little is known about how people actually reason about the veracity of their previous existence. To our knowledge, the current project is the most extensive research that probes the role of memory in past life (...) convictions. More specifically, we explore two questions. First, to what extent does memory lead to past-life belief, and is this conviction based on external validation or via the episodic sense of personal identity contained in the memory? Second, what is the conception of self on which one's current self is taken to be the same as the past-life self? -/- In what follows, we propose that memory plays an important role in convincing people that they have lived before. Fundamentally, this memory is episodic insofar as it represents the event as happened to the encoder. This memory contrasts with semantic memory - memory of facts...Further, we contend that it is the episodic sense of personal identity (rather than external validation) that typically contributes to the belief in a past life. Finally, we argue that the conception of self implicated in past-life belief is the non-trait conception. Of course, this fits naturally with the idea that the belief in a past life issues partly from the episodic sense of identity, since it is the non-trait conception of self that is implicated in the episodic sense of identity... -/- Our proposal in this chapter can be construed as a psychological extension of Reid's point in the context of past-life belief. People assume that they are the same person as someone in earlier times, despite large variations in the traits between those individuals, and they think this partly because of the testimony of their episodic memory. If our account is correct, then it makes the belief in a past life less bizarre, at least psychologically. For we are suggesting that the episodic sense of personal identity that led to your conviction that you existed at the time of your sixteenth birthday celebrations some decades ago, is also involved in other people's convictions that they existed 200 years ago. This proposal is also situated in recent cognitive approaches to the study of religion and religious experiences, which suggests that extraordinary convictions are often underpinned by the ordinary processes of social cognition (e.g. see Barrett 2000; Barrett 2007; Boyer 2001; Lawson and McCauley 1990; for reincarnation, see White Forthcoming-a,-b). (shrink)