Kasm does not offer any concept of proof which is regulative for all metaphysics, for he is convinced that each metaphysical approach requires its own proper logic and methodology. Within this pluralistic framework he seeks to discern the structure of formal truth as expressed in the concept of proof inherent in various metaphysical approaches.--L. S. F.
La publication de The Anatomy of Melancoly de Robert Burton en 1621 marque un tournant dans l’histoire de cette célèbre maladie, déjà analysée dans le Problème XXX du corpus aristotélicien. Burton, en effet, ne se contentait pas de construire une sorte d’encyclopédie du savoir philosophique et médical sur la mélancolie, qu’il considérait comme la quintessence de toutes les maladies ; il en proposait aussi de nouvelles interprétations, notamment en abordant la mélancolie sous l’angle de ses co..
In a recent article, I criticized Anthony L. Brueckner and John Martin Fischer’s influential argument—appealing to the rationality of our asymmetric attitudes towards past and future pleasures—against the Lucretian claim that death and prenatal non-existence are relevantly similar. Brueckner and Fischer have replied, however, that my critique involves an unjustified shift in temporal perspectives. In this paper, I respond to this charge and also argue that even if it were correct, it would fail to defend Brueckner and Fischer’s proposal (...) against my critique. (shrink)
John Martin Fischer and Anthony L. Brueckner have argued that a person’s death is, in many cases, bad for him, whereas a person’s prenatal non-existence is not bad for him. Their suggestion relies on the idea that death deprives the person of pleasant experiences that it is rational for him to care about, whereas prenatal non-existence only deprives him of pleasant experiences that it is not rational for him to care about. Jens Johansson has objected to this justification of (...) ‘The Asymmetry’ between the badness of death and pre-natal non-existence on the grounds that what it is actually rational for us to care about is irrelevant to the question of whether the event is bad for us. Taylor Cyr has recently argued that Jens Johansson’s objection to Fischer’s and Brueckner’s position relies on an incoherent example, and is thus unsuccessful. I argue that Cyr’s attempt to defend Fischer and Brueckner in fact illustrates that their position is incoherent, and that Johansson’s objection therefore succeeds. (shrink)
John Martin Fischer and Anthony L. Brueckner have argued that a person’s death is, in many cases, bad for him, whereas a person’s prenatal non-existence is not bad for him. Their suggestion relies on the idea that death deprives the person of pleasant experiences that it is rational for him to care about, whereas prenatal non-existence only deprives him of pleasant experiences that it is not rational for him to care about. In two recent articles in The Journal of (...) Ethics, I have objected that it is irrelevant what it is in fact rational for the person to care about. Fischer and Brueckner have replied to my critique. In this paper I respond to their latest pair of replies. (shrink)
In this introduction to the special issue of Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics on the topic of personal identity and bioethics, I provide a background for the topic and then discuss the contributions in the special issue by Eric Olson, Marya Schechtman, Tim Campbell and Jeff McMahan, James Delaney and David Hershenov, and David DeGrazia.
Death can be bad for an individual who has died, according to the “deprivation approach,” by depriving that individual of goods. One worry for this account of death’s badness is the Lucretian symmetry argument: since we do not regret having been born later than we could have been born, and since posthumous nonexistence is the mirror image of prenatal nonexistence, we should not regret dying earlier than we could have died. Anthony Brueckner and John Martin Fischer have developed a (...) response to the Lucretian challenge by arguing that it is rational to have asymmetric attitudes toward posthumous and prenatal nonexistence. Recently, Jens Johansson has criticized the Brueckner/Fischer position, claiming that it is irrelevant whether it is actually rational to care about future pleasures but not past pleasures. What matters, according to Johansson, is whether it would be rational for us to care about past pleasures had we come into existence earlier. In this paper, I add to the conversation between Johansson and Brueckner/Fischer by suggesting a way to defend the latter side’s position in a way that has not yet been suggested. I do this by considering a suggestion of Johansson’s for interpreting the Brueckner/Fischer position and by arguing that Johansson’s worry for the position I consider is actually incoherent. (shrink)
Résumé Le but de cet article est de mettre en dialogue Ricœur avec la théorie sociale d’Anthony Giddens, plus spécifiquement l’herméneutique de l’homme capable avec la théorie de la structuration. Nous commencerons par explorer quelques termes clefs permettant de comparer les deux auteurs au sujet du rapport entre acteurs et systèmes. Chez Ricœur, nous commenterons les notions d’institution et de pratique; chez Giddens, des notions importantes pour présenter la “dualité de structure.” Au cours de cette exploration, quatre tâches seront (...) identifiées en vue de préciser la “théorie sociale” de Soi-même comme un autre : dépasser le schéma foncièrement téléologique de l’action; explorer la stabilisation de l’action malgré l’incertitude inscrite dans le schéma téléologique; réinvestir la notion de contrainte; et clarifier l’ambiguïté de la notion d’institution. En conclusion, nous montrerons quels apports la mise en dialogue de Ricœur avec Giddens pourrait offrir pour accomplir ces quatre tâches. Mots-clés : Homme capable, sructuration, acteur, dualité de structure, institution, contrainte.The aim of this article is to reconstruct a dialogue between Ricœur and Anthony Giddens, in particular between the hermeneutics of the capable human and the theory of structuration. The article starts with an exploration of key concepts on the basis of which to compare the two authors on the relation between actors and systems. On Ricœur’s side the concepts of institution and practice will be commented on; on Giddens’ side notions selected to present the “duality of structure” will be considered. In the course of this exploration, four tasks will be identified by which to refine the “social theory” of Oneself as Another : surpass its ultimately teleological schema of action; explore the stabilisation of action despite the uncertainty attributed to the teleological schema; reinvest the notion of constraint; and clarify the ambiguity in the notion of institution. In conclusion the contribution of a Ricœur-Giddens dialogue to the accomplishment of these four tasks will be demonstrated. Keywords: Capable Man, Structuration, Actor, Duality of structure, Institution, Constraint. (shrink)
According to John Martin Fischer and Anthony Brueckner’s unique version of the deprivation approach to accounting for death’s badness, it is rational for us to have asymmetric attitudes toward prenatal and posthumous nonexistence. In previous work, I have defended this approach against a criticism raised by Jens Johansson by attempting to show that Johansson’s criticism relies on an example that is incoherent. Recently, Duncan Purves has argued that my defense reveals an incoherence not only in Johansson’s example but also (...) in Fischer and Brueckner’s approach itself. Here I argue that by paying special attention to a certain feature of Fischer and Brueckner’s approach, we can dispense of not only Johansson’s criticism but also of Purves’s objection to Fischer and Brueckner’s approach. (shrink)