The belief that all human beings are ‘moral equals’ is widespread within the canon of Western liberal philosophy. However, it is unclear precisely what ‘moral equality’ or its associate terms mean, what grounds our ‘moral equality’ and what the implications of being ‘moral equals’ are. In this paper, I distinguish between three ways of understanding ‘moral equality’: the ‘buck-passing’, ‘explanatory’ and ‘reverse-explanatory’ accounts. The buck-passing account of moral equality is in parallel with Scanlon’s buck-passing account of value. It holds that (...) ‘moral equality’ is not a metaphysically fundamental concept and simply amounts to having other properties shared equally by all human beings that constitute the reasons for why we ought to treat all human beings equally in certain respects. The explanatory account understands the concept of ‘moral equality’ as metaphysically fundamental and explanatory of why human beings who are the same in certain respects have the same entitlement to x. The reverse-explanatory account also sees ‘moral equality’ as metaphysically fundamental but holds that the explanatory relationship goes the other way round: moral equality is explained by how we ought to act. I argue that the buck-passing account is a more accurate way of understanding moral equality. (shrink)
Lenman 's cluelessness objection against consequentialism states that we are almost entirely clueless to the actual consequences of our action. In ‘Cluelessness,’ Hilary Greaves distinguishes between ‘simple’ and ‘complex’ cases of cluelessness and argues that the principle of indifference applies to ‘simple’ cases, thereby rescuing the ‘simple’ cases from the cluelessness objection. In this discussion note, I argue that Greaves's distinction between ‘simple’ and ‘complex’ cases fails and cluelessness is more problematic than Greaves believes.
Part philosophical meditation, part cultural critique, The Body in Pain is a profoundly original study that has already stirred excitement in a wide range of intellectual circles. The book is an analysis of physical suffering and its relation to the numerous vacabularies and cultural forces--literary, political, philosophical, medical, religious--that confront it. Elaine Scarry bases her study on a wide range of sources: literature and art, medical case histories, documents on torture compiled by Amnesty International, legal transcripts of personal injury (...) trials, and military and strategic writings by such figures as Clausewitz, Churchill, Liddell Hart, and Kissinger, She weaves these into her discussion with an eloquence, humanity, and insight that recall the writings of Hannah Arendt and Jean-Paul Sartre. Scarry begins with the fact of pain's inexpressibility. Not only is physical pain enormously difficult to describe in words--confronted with it, Virginia Woolf once noted, "language runs dry"--it also actively destroys language, reducing sufferers in the most extreme instances to an inatriculate state of cries and moans. Scarry analyzes the political ramifications of deliberately inflicted pain, specifically in the cases of torture and warfare, and shows how to be fictive. From these actions of "unmaking" Scarry turns finally to the actions of "making"--the examples of artistic and cultural creation that work against pain and the debased uses that are made of it. Challenging and inventive, The Body in Pain is landmark work that promises to spark widespread debate. About the Author: Elaine Scarry is Associate Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. (shrink)
Russellian monism – an influential doctrine proposed by Russell (1927/1992) – is roughly the view that the natural sciences can only ever tell us about the causal, dispositional, and structural properties of physical entities and not about their categorical properties, and, moreover, that our qualia are constituted by categorical properties. Recently, Stoljar (2001a, 2001b), Strawson (2008), Montero (2010, 2015), Alter and Nagasawa (2012), and Chalmers (2015) have attempted to develop this doctrine into a version of physicalism. Russellian monism faces the (...) so-called combination problem, according to which it is difficult to see how categorical properties could collectively constitute qualia. In this paper, I suggest that there is an insufficiently discussed aspect of the combination problem which I call the difference-maker problem. Taking the difference-maker problem into account, I argue that the combination problem – whether or not it can be solved – results in a dilemma for the project of developing Russellian physicalism. That is, Russellian monism is either physicalistically unacceptable or it is implausible; hence, Russellian monism and physicalism are incompatible. (shrink)
In this paper, we describe four broad ‘meta-methods’ employed in scientific and philosophical research of qualia. These are the theory-centred metamethod, the property-centred meta-method, the argument-centred meta-method, and the event-centred meta-method. Broadly speaking, the theory-centred meta-method is interested in the role of qualia as some theoretical entities picked out by our folk psychological theories; the property-centred meta-method is interested in some metaphysical properties of qualia that we immediately observe through introspection ; the argument-centred meta-method is interested in the role of (...) qualia in some arguments for non-physicalism; the event-centred metamethod is interested in the role of qualia as some natural events whose nature is hidden and must be uncovered empirically. We will argue that the event-centred metamethod is the most promising route to a comprehensive scientific conception of qualia because of the flexibility of ontological and methodological assumptions it can provide. We also reveal the hidden influences of the different meta-methods and in doing so show why consideration of meta-methods has value for the study of consciousness. (shrink)
Theories of quantum gravity generically presuppose or predict that the reality underlying relativistic spacetimes they are describing is significantly non-spatiotemporal. On pain of empirical incoherence, approaches to quantum gravity must establish how relativistic spacetime emerges from their non-spatiotemporal structures. We argue that in order to secure this emergence, it is sufficient to establish that only those features of relativistic spacetimes functionally relevant in producing empirical evidence must be recovered. In order to complete this task, an account must be given of (...) how the more fundamental structures instantiate these functional roles. We illustrate the general idea in the context of causal set theory and loop quantum gravity, two prominent approaches to quantum gravity. (shrink)
The disciplinary characterisation (DC) is the most popular approach to defining metaphysical naturalism and physicalism. It defines metaphysical naturalism with reference to scientific theories and defines physicalism with reference to physical theories, and suggests that every entity that exists is a posited entity of these theories. DC has been criticised for its inability to solve Hempel’s dilemma and a list of problems alike. In this paper, I propose and defend a novel version of DC that can be called a historical (...) paths approach. The idea is (roughly) that metaphysical naturalism can be defined with reference to the historical ideas that current scientific ideas descend from. I argue that it is not rendered implausible by the above problems, and hence that DC is more defensible and attractive than it may first appear. I then argue that the approach also provides a useful framework for the naturalisation of the philosophy of mind and phenomenology. (shrink)
Monism is our name for a range of views according to which the connection between dispositions and their categorical bases is intimate and necessary, or on which there are no categorical bases at all. In contrast, Dualist views hold that the connection between dispositions and their categorical bases is distant and contingent. This paper is a defence of Monism against an influential conceivability argument in favour of Dualism. The argument suggests that the apparent possibility of causal behaviour coming apart from (...) categorical bases is best explained by Dualism. We argue that Monism can explain the apparent possibility as well, if we take metaphysically alien laws — namely, laws whose metaphysical nature is alien to the actual world — into account. (shrink)
Russellian monism—an influential doctrine proposed by Russell (The analysis of matter, Routledge, London, 1927/1992)—is roughly the view that physics can only ever tell us about the causal, dispositional, and structural properties of physical entities and not their categorical (or intrinsic) properties, whereas our qualia are constituted by those categorical properties. In this paper, I will discuss the relation between Russellian monism and a seminal paradox facing epiphenomenalism, the paradox of phenomenal judgment: if epiphenomenalism is true—qualia are causally inefficacious—then any judgment (...) concerning qualia, including epiphenomenalism itself, cannot be caused by qualia. For many writers, including Hawthorne (Philos Perspect 15:361–378, 2001), Smart (J Conscious Stud 11(2):41–50, 2004), and Braddon-Mitchell and Jackson (The philosophy of mind and cognition, Blackwell, Malden, 2007), Russellian monism faces the same paradox as epiphenomenalism does. I will assess Chalmers’s (The conscious mind: in search of a fundamental theory. Oxford University Press, New York, 1996) and Seager’s (in: Beckermann A, McLaughlin BP (eds) The Oxford handbook of philosophy of mind. Oxford University Press, New York, 2009) defences of Russellian monism against the paradox, and will put forward a novel argument against those defences. (shrink)
Just Business provides the first comprehensive, reasoned framework for resolving questions of business ethics and corporate governance. Innovative, accessible, and global in scope, its powerful Ethical Decision Model can be used to manage the ethical problems of business as they arise in all their complexity and variety. Just Business combines business realism with philosophical rigor, and demonstrates that it is not necessary to emasculate or to adulterate business for business to be ethical. The book benefits from Elaine Sternberg's extensive (...) experience as an academic philosopher, an international investment banker, and head of successful businesses. She is now Principal of a London-headquartered consultancy firm, and Research Fellow in Philosophy at the University of Leeds. (shrink)
In prior work, we have argued that spacetime functionalism provides tools for clarifying the conceptual difficulties specifically linked to the emergence of spacetime in certain approaches to quantum gravity. We argue in this article that spacetime functionalism in quantum gravity is radically different from other functionalist approaches that have been suggested in quantum mechanics and general relativity: in contrast to these latter cases, it does not compete with purely interpretative alternatives, but is rather intertwined with the physical theorizing itself at (...) the level of quantum gravity. Spacetime functionalism allows one to articulate a coherent realist perspective in the context of quantum gravity, and to relate it to a straightforward realist understanding of general relativity. (shrink)
Confucian ethics as applied to the study of business ethics often relate to the micro consideration of personal ethics and the character of a virtuous person. Actually, Confucius and his school have much to say about the morals of the public administration and the market institutions in a more macro level. While Weber emphasizes the role of culture on the development of the economy, and Marx the determining influence of the material base on ideology, we see an interaction between culture (...) – specifically Confucian business ethics – and the economy. In this paper, we are going to study this interaction in several crucial stages of development of Confucianism. The paper concludes by postulating the relevance of Confucian business ethics to the global knowledge economy. (shrink)
This paper assesses the comparative reliability of two belief-revision rules relevant to the epistemology of disagreement, the Equal Weight and Stay the Course rules. I use two measures of reliability for probabilistic belief-revision rules, calibration and Brier Scoring, to give a precise account of epistemic peerhood and epistemic reliability. On the calibration measure of reliability, epistemic peerhood is easy to come by, and employing the Equal Weight rule generally renders you less reliable than Staying the Course. On the Brier-Score measure (...) of reliability, epistemic peerhood is much more difficult to come by, but employing the Equal Weight rule always renders you more reliable than Staying the Course. I conclude with some normative lessons we can draw from these formal results. (shrink)
Alexander Bird (2001; 2002; 2007) offers a powerful argument showing that, regardless of whether necessitarianism or contingentism about laws is true, salt necessarily dissolves in water. The argument is that the same laws of nature that are necessary for the constitution of salt necessitate the solubility of salt. This paper shows that Bird’s argument faces a serious objection if the possibility of emergentism – in particular, C. D. Broad’s account – is taken into account. The idea is (roughly) that some (...) emergent laws in some possible worlds may disrupt the solubility of salt without disrupting its constitution. (shrink)
We consider to what extent the fundamental question of spacetime singularities is relevant for the philosophical debate about the nature of spacetime. After reviewing some basic aspects of the spacetime singularities within general relativity, we argue that the well known difficulty to localize them in a meaningful way may challenge the received metaphysical view of spacetime as a set of points possessing some intrinsic properties together with some spatiotemporal relations. Considering the algebraic formulation of general relativity, we argue that the (...) spacetime singularities highlight the philosophically misleading dependence on the standard geometric representation of spacetime. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, University of Lausanne, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
"--J.M.Coetzee "Here is a writer almost magically summoning up the world through words and ideas, in a new way, and so guiding the reader, lovingly, to receive the treasures and accept the pleasures of this book as naturally as breathing.
Until very recently, feminist criticism has not had a theoretical basis; it has been an empirical orphan in the theoretical storm. In 1975, I was persuaded that no theoretical manifesto could adequately account for the varied methodologies and ideologies which called themselves feminist reading or writing.1 By the next year, Annette Kolodny had added her observation that feminist literary criticism appeared "more like a set of interchangeable strategies than any coherent school or shared goal orientation."2 Since then, the expressed goals (...) have not been notably unified. Black critics protest the "massive silence" of feminist criticism about black and Third-World women writers and call for a black feminist aesthetic that would deal with both racial and sexual politics. Marxist feminists wish to focus on class along with gender as a crucial determinant of literary production. Literary historians want to uncover a lost tradition. Critics trained in deconstructionist methodologies with to "synthesize a literary criticism that is both textual and feminist." Freudian and Lacanian critics want to theorize about women's relationship to language and signification.· 1. See my "Literary Criticism," Signs 1 : 435-60.· 2. Annette Kolodny, "Literary Criticism," Signs 2 : 420.Elaine Showalter is professor of English at Rutgers University. The author of A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing, she is currently completing The English Malady, a study of madness, literature, and society in England. (shrink)
This paper starts by investigating Ackermann's interpretation of finite set theory in the natural numbers. We give a formal version of this interpretation from Peano arithmetic (PA) to Zermelo-Fraenkel set theory with the infinity axiom negated (ZF−inf) and provide an inverse interpretation going the other way. In particular, we emphasize the precise axiomatization of our set theory that is required and point out the necessity of the axiom of transitive containment or (equivalently) the axiom scheme of ∈-induction. This clarifies the (...) nature of the equivalence of PA and ZF−inf and corrects some errors in the literature. We also survey the restrictions of the Ackermann interpretation and its inverse to subsystems of PA and ZF−inf, where full induction, replacement, or separation is not assumed. The paper concludes with a discussion on the problems one faces when the totality of exponentiation fails, or when the existence of unordered pairs or power sets is not guaranteed. (shrink)
Recent semantic approaches to scientific structuralism, aiming to make precise the concept of shared structure between models, formally frame a model as a type of set-structure. This framework is then used to provide a semantic account of (a) the structure of a scientific theory, (b) the applicability of a mathematical theory to a physical theory, and (c) the structural realist’s appeal to the structural continuity between successive physical theories. In this paper, I challenge the idea that, to be so used, (...) the concept of a model and so the concept of shared structure between models must be formally framed within a single unified framework, set-theoretic or other. I first investigate the Bourbaki-inspired assumption that structures are types of set-structured systems and next consider the extent to which this problematic assumption underpins both Suppes’ and recent semantic views of the structure of a scientific theory. I then use this investigation to show that, when it comes to using the concept of shared structure, there is no need to agree with French that “without a formal framework for explicating this concept of ‘structure-similarity’ it remains vague, just as Giere’s concept of similarity between models does ...” (French, 2000, Synthese, 125, pp. 103–120, p. 114). Neither concept is vague; either can be made precise by appealing to the concept of a morphism, but it is the context (and not any set-theoretic type) that determines the appropriate kind of morphism. I make use of French’s (1999, From physics to philosophy (pp. 187–207). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) own example from the development of quantum theory to show that, for both Weyl and Wigner’s programmes, it was the context of considering the ‘relevant symmetries’ that determined that the appropriate kind of morphism was the one that preserved the shared Lie-group structure of both the theoretical and phenomenological models. (shrink)
This paper sets out a moderate version of metaphysical structural realism that stands in contrast to both the epistemic structural realism of Worrall and the—radical—ontic structural realism of French and Ladyman. According to moderate structural realism, objects and relations (structure) are on the same ontological footing, with the objects being characterized only by the relations in which they stand. We show how this position fares well as regards philosophical arguments, avoiding the objections against the other two versions of structural realism. (...) In particular, we set out how this position can be applied to space-time, providing for a convincing understanding of space-time points in the standard tensor formulation of general relativity as well as in the fibre bundle formulation. (shrink)
Haneke’s film Funny Games is a reflection on the nature of pain and representation. I argue that the film closely follows Elaine Scarry’s arguments about the structure of torture. Further, by refusing to appeal to categories of generalization such as ‘sadism’ and ‘psychopathy’, Haneke undermines the process of finding meaning in violence. Haneke positions his audiences as more than just witnesses to torture, but active participants in cruelty.
The paper argues that there are structures rather than objects with an intrinsic identity in the domain of fundamental physics. We line out the standard metaphysics of objects with an intrinsic identity, recall the main objection against that position (section 1) and then retrace the development to epistemic structural realism (section 2) and to ontic structural realism (section 3). We elaborate on the arguments for ontic structural realism from quantum physics (section 4) and from space-time physics (section 5). Finally, we (...) claim that the main objection against the standard metaphysics of objects with an intrinsic identity is countered by structural realism only if the fundamental physical structures are conceived as causal structures (section 6). (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to put into context the historical, foundational and philosophical significance of category theory. We use our historical investigation to inform the various category-theoretic foundational debates and to point to some common elements found among those who advocate adopting a foundational stance. We then use these elements to argue for the philosophical position that category theory provides a framework for an algebraic in re interpretation of mathematical structuralism. In each context, what we aim to show (...) is that, whatever the significance of category theory, it need not rely upon any set-theoretic underpinning. (shrink)
This paper considers the nature and role of axioms from the point of view of the current debates about the status of category theory and, in particular, in relation to the "algebraic" approach to mathematical structuralism. My aim is to show that category theory has as much to say about an algebraic consideration of meta-mathematical analyses of logical structure as it does about mathematical analyses of mathematical structure, without either requiring an assertory mathematical or meta-mathematical background theory as a "foundation", (...) or turning meta-mathematical analyses of logical concepts into "philosophical" ones. Thus, we can use category theory to frame an interpretation of mathematics according to which we can be structuralists all the way down. (shrink)
"--Robert Fagles, translator of Homer's "Iliad" "I finished "Dreaming by the Book" feeling that fundamental aspects of the nature of consciousness had been peeled open and exposed to view."--Stephen M. Kosslyn, author of "Image and Brain".
Ethical dilemmas involving tax issues were identified by members of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants as posing the most difficult ethical problem for them (Finn et al., Journal of Business Ethics 7(8), pp. 607–609, 1988). The KPMG tax shelter fraud case proves that the tax profession has not gone untainted in the age of numerous accounting and corporate scandals, such as the Enron débâcle (Sikka and Hampton, Accounting Forum 29(3), 325–343, 2005). High-profile scandals serve to highlight the problems (...) caused by differences in ethical judgement among accountants and tax practitioners and the issue of ethics has been brought publicly to the forefront of the profession. Nevertheless, the nature and dimension of ethical issues in tax practice have been largely unexplored (Erard, Journal of Public Economics 52(2), 163–197, 1993; Marshall et al., Journal of Business Ethics 17(12), 1265–1279, 1998; Frecknall Hughes, Unpublished PhD Thesis, The University of Leeds, 2002). This research aims to contribute to the debate on ethics in tax practice by reporting interview data on tax practitioners’ perceptions of ethics in the jurisdictions of Ireland and the United Kingdom and exploring the link or equation of ethics with risk management. (shrink)
The article sets out a primitive ontology of the natural world in terms of primitive stuff—that is, stuff that has as such no physical properties at all—but that is not a bare substratum either, being individuated by metrical relations. We focus on quantum physics and employ identity-based Bohmian mechanics to illustrate this view, but point out that it applies all over physics. Properties then enter into the picture exclusively through the role that they play for the dynamics of the primitive (...) stuff. We show that such properties can be local, as well as holistic, and discuss two metaphysical options to conceive them, namely, Humeanism and modal realism in the guise of dispositionalism. 1 Introduction2 Primitive Ontology: Primitive Stuff3 The Physics of Matter as Primitive Stuff4 The Humean Best System Analysis of the Dynamical Variables5 Modal Realism about the Dynamical Variables6 Conclusion. (shrink)
Previous empirical research has found mixed results for the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) investments on corporate financial performance (CFP). This paper contributes to the literature by exploring in a two stage investor decision-making model the relationship between a firm’s innovation effort, CSR, and financial performance. We simultaneously examine the impact of CSR on both accounting-based (financial health) and market-based (Tobin’s Q) financial performance measures. From a sample of top corporate citizens, we find that: (1) a firm’s social responsibility (...) commitment (CSR) contributes to its financial performance; (2) after controlling for investment in innovation activities, CSR continues to have a positive impact on a firm’s financial performance; (3) the customer dimension of CSR has a positive effect on both CFP measures, whereas the employee dimension indicates a significant impact only on financial heath; and (4) the community relation dimension of CSR only affects the market-based CFP measure of firms with high innovation intensity. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to put into context the historical, foundational and philosophical significance of category theory. We use our historical investigation to inform the various category-theoretic foundational debates and to point to some common elements found among those who advocate adopting a foundational stance. We then use these elements to argue for the philosophical position that category theory provides a framework for an algebraic _in re_ interpretation of mathematical structuralism. In each context, what we aim to show (...) is that, whatever the significance of category theory, it need not rely upon any set-theoretic underpinning. (shrink)
The paper spells out five different accounts of the relationship between objects and relations three of which are versions of ontic structural realism. We argue that the distinction between objects and properties, including relations, is merely a conceptual one by contrast to an ontological one: properties, including relations, are modes, that is the concrete, particular ways in which objects exist. We then set out moderate OSR as the view according to which irreducible relations are central ways in which the fundamental (...) physical objects exist. Physical structures thus consist in objects for whom it is essential that they are related in certain ways. There hence are objects, but they do not possess an intrinsic identity. This view can also admit intrinsic properties as ways in which objects exist provided that these do not amount to identity conditions for the objects. Finally, we indicate how this view can take objective modality into account. (shrink)
This paper reports on the development of a research instrument designed to explore ethical reasoning in a tax context. This research instrument is a version of the Defining Issues Test (DIT) originally developed by Rest [1979a, Development in Judging Moral Issues (Univer sity of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, MN); 1979b, Defining Issues Test (University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, MN)], but adapted to focus specifically on the environment encountered by tax practitioners. The paper explores reasons for developing a context-(and profession-) specific test, (...) and details the manner in which this was undertaken. The study on which it is based aims to compare the reasoning of tax practitioners in the taxspecific context and in the general social context covered by the original DIT, and to compare this with the reasoning of non-specialists in these two contexts. The paper therefore also considers the issues that arise when using such tests to compare reasoning in different domains or to compare groups. The focus on instrument development to measure ethical reasoning in a specific domain will contribute to the literature on research methods in the area of the DIT and will facilitate cross-study comparisons. (shrink)