I respond to Jonathan Chimakonam’s paper in which he presents an approach to dialogue in philosophical space, and raises questions about my own approach. I raise four questions to his understanding of conversation. First, I ask him for more details on his conception of conversation. Second, what happens if not everyone cares to enter into conversation? Third, is conversation a prerequisite to philosophy, or a part of philosophy? And fourth, how does wonder fit into conversation in and about place?
Bruce Janz, Jessica Locke, and Cynthia Willett interact in this exchange with different aspects of Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad’s book Human Being, Bodily Being. Through “constructive inter-cultural thinking”, they seek to engage with Ram-Prasad’s “lower-case p” phenomenology, which exemplifies “how to think otherwise about the nature and role of bodiliness in human experience”. This exchange, which includes Ram-Prasad’s reply to their interventions, pushes the reader to reflect more about different aspects of bodiliness.
One of the more sustained efforts to think beyond current academic structures has been launched by CIRET, the International Centre for Transdisciplinary Research, in Paris. This centre was involved in the First World Congress of Transdisciplinarity, in Portugal, 1994, and another international congress in Locarno, Switzerland, in early May 1997. They have a project with UNESCO on transdisciplinarity, and are involved in the World Conference on Higher Education, to be held in Paris at the end of September 1998.
Introduction: Philosophy-in-place -- Tradition in the periphery -- Questioning reason -- Wisdom is actually thought -- Culture and the problem of universality -- Listening to language -- Practicality : African philosophy's debts and duties -- Locating African philosophy.
Philosophy in an African Place shifts the central question of African philosophy from "Is there an African philosophy?" to "What is it to do philosophy in this place?" This book both opens up new questions within the field and also establishes "philosophy-in-place", a mode of philosophy which begins from the places in which concepts have currency and shows how a truly creative philosophy can emerge from focusing on questioning, listening, and attention to difference.
Dieter Birnbacher is professor of philosophy at the University of Düsseldorf and a member of the Foundation for the Rights of Future Generations’ scientific board. In 1988 he published the book Verantwortung für zukünftige Generationen ; which was translated into French and Polish. Hanna Schudy is an ethicist and environmentalist interested in questions of intergenerational responsibility concerning the natural environment. She is a doctoral student at the University of Wroclaw and a DAAD scholarship holder. The interview was conducted in (...) December 2011 at the Heinrich Heine Universität; Duesseldorf. It is part of Ms. Schudy’s current research into “The principle of responsibility in Hans Jonas’ and Dieter Birnbacher’s environmental ethics”. (shrink)
The title of Emmanuel Eze’s final, posthumously published book uses the words “reason” and “rationality” in a manner that might suggest they are interchangeable. I would like to suggest that we not treat them as the same, but rather tease out a difference in emphasis and reference between the two. In African philosophy, the problem of reason is really two separate problems, the first of which I will call the “problem of reason” (that is, the question of whether there are (...) diverse forms of reason or only one universal form) and the second the “problem of rationality” (that is, the question of whether everyone has the capacity to deploy reason past what mimicry or programming makes possible). Both of these problems are addressed by Eze’s schema for forms of reason. He identifies several forms, but focuses on “ordinary reason”, which allows all the other forms to operate. Ordinary reason also makes rationality possible, that is, the culturally specific yet emergent way of navigating forms of reason. Reason is necessarily diverse, because its multiple forms are deployed differently by different rationalities. (shrink)
Samantha Vice’s proposal on how to live in ‘this strange place’ of contemporary South Africa, includes an appeal to the concepts of shame and silence. In this paper, I use Emmanuel Levinas and Giorgio Agamben to move the discussion of shame from a moral to an existential question. The issue is not about how one should feel, but about the kind of self that whiteness in South Africa makes possible today. Shame desubjectifies. Vice’s recommendation of silence is then taken as (...) witnessing/listening, which I argue grounds the possibility of a recovery of the self. (shrink)
This 2004 book reconfigures the basic problem of Christian thinking - 'How can human discourse refer meaningfully to a transcendent God?' - as a twofold demand for integrity: integrity of reason and integrity of transcendence. Centring around a provocative yet penetratingly faithful re-reading of Kant's empirical realism, and drawing on an impelling confluence of contemporary thinkers Paul D. Janz argues that theology's 'referent' must be located within present empirical reality. Rigorously reasoned yet refreshingly accessible throughout, this book provides an (...) important, attentively informed alternative to the growing trends toward obscurantism, radicalization and anti-reason in many recent assessments of theological cognition, while remaining equally alert to the hazards of traditional metaphysics. In the book's culmination, epistemology and Christology converge around problems of noetic authority and orthodoxy with a kind of innovation, depth and straightforwardness that readers of theology at all levels of philosophical acquaintance will find illuminating. (shrink)
There has been a great deal of work done in recent years on "place-making". The concept has had currency in urban renewal and design circles, and a quick search of the Research on Place and Space page turns up a number of uses of the term. Usually the idea refers to the various ways in which physical and social space can be arranged to facilitate and encourage elusive, visceral things such as " community ".
Astronauts often report experiences of awe and wonder while traveling in space. This paper addresses the question of whether awe and wonder can be scientifically investigated in a simulated space travel scenario using a neurophenomenological method. To answer this question, we created a mixed-reality simulation similar to the environment of the International Space Station. Portals opened to display simulations of Earth or Deep Space. However, the challenge still remained of how to best capture the resulting experience of participants. We could (...) use psychological methods, neuroscientific methods or philosophical methods. Each of these approaches offer many benefits, but each is also limited. Neurophenomenology capitalises on and integrates all three methods. We employed questionnaires from psychology, electroencephalography, electrocardiography, and functional near-infrared spectroscopy from neuroscience, and a phenomenological interview technique from philosophy. This neurophenomenological method enabled extensive insight in experiencers and non-experiencers of awe and wonder in a simulated space scenario that otherwise would not have been possible. Traditional empirical analyses were completed, followed by individual differences analyses using interview transcriptions paired with physiological responses. Experiencers of AW showed differences in theta and beta activity throughout the brain compared to non-experiencers. Questionnaires indicated that non-experiencers of AW gave more positive responses of religious and spiritual practices than experiencers of AW. Interviews showed that awe and wonder were more likely to occur when watching the simulated Earth view instead of the Deep Space view. Our study is a successful example of neurophenomenology, a powerful and promising interdisciplinary approach for future studies of complex states of experience. (shrink)
Hence, there is still controversy over which of the two versions of the deduction deserves priority and whether indeed any distinction between them can be maintained that would go beyond questions of presentation and involve the structure of the proof itself. Schopenhauer and Heidegger held that the first edition alone fully expresses Kant's unique philosophy, while Kant himself, as well as many other Kantians, have only seen a difference in the method of presentation.
The relation between ethics and social science is often conceived as complementary, both disciplines cooperating in the solution of concrete moral problems. Against this, the paper argues that not only applied ethics but even certain parts of general ethics have to incorporate sociological and psychological data and theories from the start. Applied ethics depends on social science in order to asses the impact of its own principles on the concrete realities which these principles are to regulate as well as in (...) order to propose practice rules suited to adapt these principles to their respective contexts of application. Examples from medical ethics (embryo research) and ecological ethics (Leopold's land ethic) illustrate both the contingence of practice rules in relation to their underlying basic principles and the corresponding need for a co-operation between philosophy and empirical disciplines in judging their functional merits and demerits. In conclusion, the relevance of empirical hypotheses even for some of the perennial problems of ethics is shown by clarifying the role played by empirical theories in the controversies about the ethical differentiation between positive and negative responsibility and the relation between utility maximisation and (seemingly) independent criteria of distributive justice in the context of social distributions. (shrink)
Kant is by no means the pure rationalist that Husserl and others represented him as being. To the contrary I claim that Kant is an ethical intuitionist when it comes to our recognition of the validity of the moral law. Interpreting Kant’s famous thesis about the “fact of reason”, I will first argue for three interpretative theses: 1. The factum theory explains our insight into the binding character of the moral law; it is a theory of justification. 2. In our (...) consciousness of the categorical imperative, the moral law is immediately given in its unconditional and binding validity. 3. The unconditional validity of the CI is given in the feeling of respect. Drawing on basic thoughts of Reformed Epistemology, I will then sketch a way to defend Kant’s theory. (shrink)
In the Introduction of the Tugendlehre, Kant identifies love of human beings as one of the four moral predispositions that make us receptive to the moral law. We claim that this love is neither benevolence nor the aptitude of the inclination to beneficence in general (both are also called love of human beings); rather it is amor complacentiae, which Kant understands as the delight in moral striving for perfection. We also provide a detailed analysis of Kant's almost completely neglected theory (...) of moral predispositions. They are necessary conditions to be aware of the moral law and to be motivated by it. (shrink)
This is a collection of four essays on aesthetic, ethical, and political issues by the pre-eminent Kant scholar in Germany today, perhaps best known for rekindling interest in the great classical German tradition from Kant to Fichte.
Starting with D. Scott's work on the mathematical foundations of programming language semantics, interest in topology has grown up in theoretical computer science, under the slogan `open sets are semidecidable properties'. But whereas on effectively given Scott domains all such properties are also open, this is no longer true in general. In this paper a characterization of effectively given topological spaces is presented that says which semidecidable sets are open. This result has important consequences. Not only follows the classical Rice-Shapiro (...) Theorem and its generalization to effectively given Scott domains, but also a recursion theoretic characterization of the canonical topology of effectively given metric spaces. Moreover, it implies some well known theorems on the effective continuity of effective operators such as P. Young and the author's general result which in its turn entails the theorems by Myhill-Shepherdson, Kreisel-Lacombe-Shoenfield and Ceĭtin-Moschovakis, and a result by Eršov and Berger which says that the hereditarily effective operations coincide with the hereditarily effective total continuous functionals on the natural numbers. (shrink)
In this collection comprising four of his most influential essays, Henrich proves himself unique in the conjunction of philosophical acumen, insight, and originality that he brings to Kant interpretation.