In this article, I perform an aesthetic analysis of the intuition of phenomenal consciousness, redescribing this intuition as the result of a creative activity affirming of the uniqueness and value of human engagements with the world rather than the result of an activity of self-knowing through which phenomenal awareness becomes aware of itself. During this analysis, I analogize the construction of the intuition of phenomenal consciousness to the construction of religious intuitions for sophisticated believers and the construction of aesthetic intuitions (...) for sophisticated aesthetes. I find accounts of the 'mistake' of the intuition of phenomenal consciousness by authors such as Dennett are overly reductive and simplistic, even though I agree that phenomenal consciousness is a created illusion rather than a natural kind. The intuition of phenomenal consciousness is a sophisticated formation which testifies to the commitment of certain naturalistically inclined theorists to the inestimable value of private experience. (shrink)
This essay investigates the way in which dying and dead bodies resist poetic incorporation and the way in which such bodies can be fugitively attested to through fictive prose. It examines Heidegger's treatment of dead and dying bodies from Being and Time to his later work on poetry and language, and it offers as a counterpoint another mode of addressing these bodies found in the fiction of Poe. It also shows how even the poetry of Trakl, heralded by Heidegger as (...) an exemplar of poetic address, can be fruitfully understood in prosaic terms, terms which more faithfully reveal both the content of his poetry itself as well as the true nature of the wounds of dying life. (shrink)
A. P. A. Hutchinson. What's the Point of Elucidation? Metaphilosophy, 2007, vol. 38, no. 5, pages 691-713. Published by and copyright Wiley-Blackwell Publishing. The definitive version of this article is available from http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/.
This 2001 book is a comprehensive study of the ethics of G. E. Moore, the most important English-speaking ethicist of the twentieth century. Moore's ethical project, set out in his seminal text Principia Ethica, is to preserve common moral insight from scepticism and, in effect, persuade his readers to accept the objective character of goodness. Brian Hutchinson explores Moore's arguments in detail and in the process relates the ethical thought to Moore's anti-sceptical epistemology. Moore was, without perhaps fully realizing (...) it, sceptical about the very enterprise of philosophy itself, and in this regard, as Brian Hutchinson reveals, was much closer in his thinking to Wittgenstein than has been previously realized. This book shows Moore's ethical work to be much richer and more sophisticated than his critics have acknowledged. (shrink)
Law is best interpreted in the context of the traditions and cultures that have shaped its development, implementation, and acceptance. However, these can never be assessed truly objectively: individual interpreters of legal theory need to reflect on how their own experiences create the framework within which they understand legal concepts. Theory is not separate from practice, but one kind of practice. It is rooted in the world, even if it is not grounded by it. In this highly original volume, Allan (...) C. Hutchinson takes up the challenge of self-reflection about how his upbringing, education, and scholarship contributed to his legal insights and analysis. Through this honest examination of key episodes in his own life and work, Hutchinson produces unique interpretations of fundamental legal concepts. This book is required reading for every lawyer or legal scholar who wants to analyse critically where he or she stands when they practice and study law. (shrink)
Toward an Informal Account of Legal Interpretation offers a viable account of law, judicial decision-making, and legal interpretation that is as fresh as it is familiar. The author expertly challenges the dominant mode of formalist theorizing and proposes an explanatory account of legal interpretation that can profitably be understood as an 'informal' intervention. Such an informal approach has no truck with either the claims of the formalists or those of the anti-formalists. Hutchinson insists that, when understood properly, legal interpretation (...) is an applied exercise in law-and-ideology; it is both constrained and unconstrained in equal measure. In developing this informalist account through a sustained application of the 'no vehicles in the park' rule, this book is wide-ranging in theoretical scope and substance, but also accessible and practical in style. (shrink)
A new translation and edition of Aristotle's Protrepticus (with critical comments on the fragments) -/- Welcome -/- The Protrepticus was an early work of Aristotle, written while he was still a member of Plato's Academy, but it soon became one of the most famous works in the whole history of philosophy. Unfortunately it was not directly copied in the middle ages and so did not survive in its own manuscript tradition. But substantial fragments of it have been preserved in several (...) works by Iamblichus of Chalcis, a third century A.D. neo-Pythagorean philosopher and educator. On the basis of a close study of Iamblichus' extensive use and excerption of Aristotle's Protrepticus, it is possible to reconstruct the backbone of the lost work, and then to flesh it out with the other surviving reports about the work from antiquity (for example in Alexander of Aphrodisias and other ancient commentators on Aristotle). It is also possible to identify several papyrus fragments of the work, and many references and literary allusions in later authors, especially Cicero, whose own lost dialogue Hortensius was a defense of philosophy modeleld on Aristotle's. (shrink)
Frege claims that the laws of logic are characterized by their “generality,” but it is hard to see how this could identify a special feature of those laws. I argue that we must understand this talk of generality in normative terms, but that what Frege says provides a normative demarcation of the logical laws only once we connect it with his thinking about truth and science. He means to be identifying the laws of logic as those that appear in every (...) one of the scientific systems whose construction is the ultimate aim of science, and in which all truths have a place. Though an account of logic in terms of scientific systems might seem hopelessly antiquated, I argue that it is not: a basically Fregean account of the nature of logic still looks quite promising. (shrink)
Experimental methods and conceptual confusion : philosophy, science, and what emotions really are -- To 'make our voices resonate' or 'to be silent'? : shame as fundamental ontology -- Emotion, cognition, and world -- Shame and world.
The Belmont Report’s distinction between research and the practice of accepted therapy has led various authors to suggest that these purportedly distinct activities should be governed by different ethical principles. We consider some of the ethical consequences of attempts to separate the two and conclude that separation fails along ontological, ethical, and epistemological dimensions. Clinical practice and clinical research, as with yin and yang, can be thought of as complementary forces interacting to form a dynamic system in which the whole (...) exceeds the sum of its parts. Just as effective clinical practice cannot exist without clinical research, meaningful clinical research requires the context of clinical practice. We defend this thesis by triangulation, that is, by outlining how multiple investigators have reached this conclusion on the basis of varied theoretical and applied approaches. More confidence can be placed in a result if different methods/viewpoints have led to that result. (shrink)
Plotinus is the first Greek philosopher to hold a systematic theory of consciousness. The key feature of his theory is that it involves multiple layers of experience: different layers of consciousness occur in different levels of self. This layering of higher modes of consciousness on lower ones provides human beings with a rich experiential world, and enables human beings to draw on their own experience to investigate their true self and the nature of reality. This involves a robust notion of (...) subjectivity. However, it is a notion of subjectivity that is unique to Plotinus, and remarkably different from the Post-Cartesian tradition. Behind the plurality of terms Plotinus uses to express consciousness, and behind the plurality of entities to which Plotinus attributes consciousness, lies a theory of human consciousness. It is a Platonist theory shaped by engagement with rival schools of ancient thought. (shrink)
In recent discussions of the so-called “value of truth,” it is assumed that what is valuable in the relevant way is not the things that are true, but only various states and activities associated with those things: knowing them, investigating them, etc. I consider all the arguments I know of for this assumption, and argue that none provide good reason to accept it. By examining these arguments, we gain a better appreciation of what the value of the things that are (...) true would be, and why it would matter. We also encounter three indications that what is true really is valuable, each of which provides a promising starting point for a serious argument with that conclusion. (shrink)
Gordon Baker in his last decade published a series of papers (now collected in Baker 2004), which are revolutionary in their proposals for understanding of later Wittgenstein. Taking our lead from the first of those papers, on "perspicuous presentations," we offer new criticisms of 'elucidatory' readers of later Wittgenstein, such as Peter Hacker: we argue that their readings fail to connect with the radically therapeutic intent of the 'perspicuous presentation' concept, as an achievement-term, rather than a kind of 'objective' mapping (...) of a 'conceptual landscape.' Baker's Wittgenstein, far from being a 'language policeman' of the kind that often fails to influence mainstream philosophy, offers an alternative to the latent scientism of Wittgenstein's influential 'elucidatory' readers. (shrink)
We hope to show that the overall protreptic plan of Aristotle's ethical writings is based on the plan he used in his published work Protrepticus (Exhortation to Philosophy), by highlighting those passages that primarily offer hortatory or protreptic motivation rather than dialectical argumentation and analysis, and by illustrating several ways that Aristotle adapts certain arguments and examples from his Protrepticus. In this essay we confine our attention to the books definitely attributable to the Nicomachean Ethics (thus excluding the common books).
In the current academic climate, teaching is often seen as secondary to research. Teaching Philosophy seeks to bring teaching philosophy higher on the academic agenda.An international team of contributors, all of whom share the view that philosophy is a subject that can transform students, offers practical guidance and advice for teachers of philosophy. The book suggests ways in which the teaching of philosophy at undergraduate level might be facilitated. Some of the essays place the emphasis on individual self discovery, others (...) focus on the wider political context, many offer practical ideas for enhancing the teaching of philosophy through exercises that engage students in often unconventional ways. The integration of students' views on teaching provides a necessary reminder that teaching is not a one-way process, but a project that will ultimately succeed through cooperation and a shared sense of achievement amongst participants. (shrink)
The Protein Ontology (PRO) is designed as a formal and principled Open Biomedical Ontologies (OBO) Foundry ontology for proteins. The components of PRO extend from a classification of proteins on the basis of evolutionary relationships at the homeomorphic level to the representation of the multiple protein forms of a gene, including those resulting from alternative splicing, cleavage and/or posttranslational modifications. Focusing specifically on the TGF-beta signaling proteins, we describe the building, curation, usage and dissemination of PRO. PRO provides a framework (...) for the formal representation of protein classes and protein forms in the OBO Foundry. It is designed to enable data retrieval and integration and machine reasoning at the molecular level of proteins, thereby facilitating cross-species comparisons, pathway analysis, disease modeling and the generation of new hypotheses. (shrink)
The essays collected here demonstrate that the philosophy of habit is not confined to the work of just a handful of thinkers, but traverses the entire history of Western philosophy and continues to thrive in contemporary theory. A History of Habit: From Aristotle to Bourdieu is the first book to document the richness and diversity of this history. It demonstrates the breadth, flexibility, and explanatory power of the concept of habit as well as its enduring significance. It makes the case (...) for habit’s perennial attraction for philosophers, psychologists, and sociologists. (shrink)
Plotinus holds an important position in the history of late ancient philosophy on the concept of human agency. On the one hand, he follows Plato in regarding a human agent as one who self-identifies with the rational soul, becomes one from many, and acts from reason (Republic, 443de). On the other hand, due to the view characteristic of the second century CE that destiny causally determines the sensible world and sophisticated debates concerning freedom and determinism up to, and during, the (...) second century CE, Plotinus develops Plato’s view further in an effort to meet the challenges posed by earlier determinists. The position he develops in the Enneads is a dynamic synthesis of Platonic, Peripatetic, Stoic, and Middle-Platonic theorizing on human causation that shows how one can be a self-determining agent even while living in a world governed by destiny. I argue that the key to understanding Plotinus’ theory of human agency is to understand the role that consciousness plays since he holds that in order to be the sole causal source of our actions, and therefore truly self-determining, we must derive our premises for action from Intellect. Important for my purposes is his peculiar view that Intellect is also “in ourselves” (V.1.10.5-8) and can be reached by turning inwards and ascending upwards which is possible through possessing a unique mode of consciousness, namely awareness (sunaisthēsis). (shrink)
This provocative, engaging and important book marks the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Peter Winch's seminal The Idea of a Social Science. The authors – the first two philosophers, the third a sociologist – have worked together in various permutations before. No-one familiar with their previous publications will be surprised that the dominant voice throughout is Wittgenstein's – that is, Wittgenstein as read ‘resolutely’ by ‘new Wittgensteinians’. They have three principal aims: first, to read Winch's own work in an (...) equally ‘resolute’ way; hence to read ISS as prophylactic and therapeutic in intention, and not as heralding a wonderful or not-so-wonderful new social theory; secondly, to defend Winch against certain persistent charges; and thirdly, to persuade social theorists and philosophers of ‘social science’ that Winch's therapeutic lessons have not yet been assimilated, with the possible exception of a handful of ethnographers and ethnomethodologists.Following a substantial introductory section, Chapters 1 and 2 – respectively, entitled ‘Beyond pluralism, monism, relativism, realism etc.: reassessing Peter Winch’ and ‘Winch and linguistic idealism’ – argue that Winch cannot be seen as an advocate of linguistic idealism or “any of the other ‘isms’ that have been reactively bandied about …. (shrink)
Much has been written on the relative merits of different readings of Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. The recent renewal of the debate has almost exclusively been concerned with variants of the ineffabilist (metaphysical) reading of TL-P - notable such readings have been advanced by Elizabeth Anscombe, P. M. S. Hacker and H. O. Mounce - and the recently advanced variants of therapeutic (resolute) readings - notable advocates of which are James Conant, Cora Diamond, Juliet Floyd and Michael Kremer. During this debate, (...) there have been a number of writers who have tried to develop a third way, incorporating what they see as insights and avoiding what they see as flaws in both the ineffabilist and resolute readings. The most prominent advocates of these elucidatory readings of TL-P are Dan Hutto (2003) and Marie McGinn (1999). In this paper we subject Hutto's and McGinn's readings of TL-P to critical scrutiny. We find that in seeking to occupy the middle ground they ultimately find themselves committed to (and in the process commit Wittgenstein to) the very ineffabilism they (and Wittgenstein) are seeking to overcome. (shrink)
Is there a response, which is not accounted for by regression to the mean, natural history, the Hawthorne effect?The term placebo comes to us from the Latin for "I shall please," indicating that the phenomenon known as the "placebo effect" or "placebo response" has been familiar to medical practitioners for a number of centuries, at least. As we reached the mid-20th century and randomized controlled trials became a central feature of medical research, the use of controls and blinding in those (...) trials allowed for the isolation of the placebo effect in ways that made it much clearer that there... (shrink)
Attention is strongly influenced by both external stimuli and internal goals. However, this useful dichotomy does not readily capture the ubiquitous and often automatic contribution of past experience stored in memory. We review recent evidence about how multiple memory systems control attention, consider how such interactions are manifested in the brain, and highlight how this framework for ‘memory-guided attention’ might help systematize previous findings and guide future research.
Authenticates approximately 500 lines of Aristotle's lost work the Protrepticus (Exhortation to Philosophy) contained in the circa third century AD work by Iamblichus of Chalcis entitled Protrepticus epi philosophian. Includes a complete English translation of the authenticated material.
Originally published in 1986. Both moral philosophers and philosophical psychologists need to answer the question ‘what is a virtue?’ and the best answer so far give is that of Aristotle. This book is a rigorous exposition of that answer. The elements of Aristotle’s doctrine of virtue are scattered throughout his writings; this book reconstructs his complex and comprehensive doctrine in one place. It also covers Aristotle’s views about choice, character, emotions and the role of pleasure and pain in virtue. The (...) celebrated function is considered carefully as well as the doctrine of virtue being related to Aristotle’s metaphysics and categories. (shrink)