Author: Jedliński Marek Title: WESTERN CULTURE THROUGH THE EYES OF RUSSIAN ROMANTICS. ON CAPITALISM AND RATIONALISM (Kultura Zachodu oczami romantyków rosyjskich. Rzecz o kapitalizmie i racjonalizmie) Source: Filo-Sofija year: 2011, vol:.12, number: 2011/1, pages: 373-383 Keywords: RUSSIAN ROMANTIC, WESTERN CULTURE, CAPITALISM, RATIONALISM Discipline: PHILOSOPHY Language: POLISH Document type: ARTICLE Publication order reference (Primary author’s office address): E-mail: www:The article presents Russian Romantics’ reflections on Western culture, highlighting their views on capitalism and rationalism. Russian thinkers regarded farewell with religious outlook (...) and the associated development of capitalism as unambiguously negative. According to them, capitalism led to egocentric perception of reality and finally to demise of culture. They called capitalism ‘a contemporary form of barbarism’ as it encouraged fighting and increased the desire to possess. They claimed it would precipitate an acute crisis resulting in regression of civilization. The capitalism-induced process of degradation of Western culture was accelerated by the affirmation of reason. Rationalism limited human freedom. The views were expressed in the oeuvre of the poet Alexei Khomakov and of the historians Stepan Shevyriov and Mikhail Pogodin, as well as, in a more structured manner, in Vladimir Odoyevsky’s novel titled ‘Russian Nights’ (1844). (shrink)
En su más reciente libro, Eleonora Orlando nos presenta una provocadora propuesta que busca cuestionar el éxito de la tradición fregeana en filosofía del lenguaje siguiendo líneas contextualistas y relevantistas. Este libro constituye una valiosa aportación a la filosofía del lenguaje contemporánea. Es una lectura obligatoria para todo aquel interesado en entender el estado actual de la filosofía del lenguaje. Además, la gran variedad de textos y posturas que lo comprenden constituyen por sí mismos valiosas y en ocasiones controvertidas (...) contribuciones a la discusión actual. De ahí que este libro sea también una extraordinaria invitación a continuar la ya centenaria discusión sobre la visión fregeana del lenguaje y si el contextualismo presenta una manera conveniente de mejorarla. En este artículo me propongo hacer un estudio crítico de este libro, particularmente de su desafío al fregeanismo. Para ello discutiré a detalle sus argumentos más antifregeanos, preguntándome al mismo tiempo si se trata de posturas incompatibles con la semántica fregeana o si, por el contrario, constituyen propuestas enteramente compatibles con esta. (shrink)
L'auteure, italienne antifasciste dès l'adolescence, ne cache pas, dans son introduction, qu'elle écrit ce livre « comme un récit à deux miroirs ». Intriguée dans son enfance par le personnage de la « savante et poétesse...martyre de la liberté » dont une plaque conserve, à Rome, le souvenir, elle s'identifie largement, devenue adulte, à celle qui dirige et rédige à Naples, sous la Révolution, il Monitore napoletano. Peu connue en France, l'héroïne de la révolution napolitaine, marquis..
S’il fallait résumer en un mot l’importance de la contribution du présent ouvrage aux débats sur le genre , c’est celui de «désessentialisation» qui viendrait à l’esprit: tout comme il n’y a pas «la» femme, tout comme il n’y a pas «la» race, il n’y a pas «la» religion. Comme d’autres, le terrain de la religion est un terrain en tension, travaillé par des mouvements théologiques mais aussi idéologiques, sociaux et politiques; de même, la religion n’est pas autarcique par rapport (...) au monde dans lequel elle s’insère et s’exprime, et est affectée par lui. Les quelques 22 contributions réunies dans le présent ouvrage, qui fait suite à un colloque organisé par le Groupe Société Religions Laïcités en mai 2012, convergent toutes pour souligner ainsi, depuis des perspectives disciplinaires distinctesL’ouvrage recueille des contributions d’anthropologues, d’historien-nes, de sociologues, de politistes…. .. (shrink)
In this paper we present a framework for the dynamic and automatic generation of novel knowledge obtained through a process of commonsense reasoning based on typicality-based concept combination. We exploit a recently introduced extension of a Description Logic of typicality able to combine prototypical descriptions of concepts in order to generate new prototypical concepts and deal with problem like the PET FISH (Osherson and Smith, 1981; Lieto & Pozzato, 2019). Intuitively, in the context of our application of this logic, the (...) overall pipeline of our system works as follows: given a goal expressed as a set of properties, if the knowledge base does not contain a concept able to fulfill all these properties, then our system looks for two concepts to recombine in order to extend the original knowledge based satisfy the goal. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to explore the impact of Darwinism in metaethics and dispel some of the confusion surrounding it. While the prospects for a Darwinian metaethics appear to be improving, some underlying epistemological issues remain unclear. We will focus on the so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments (EDAs) which, when applied in metaethics, are defined as arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of moral beliefs so as to undermine their epistemic justification. The point is that an epistemic disanalogy (...) can be identified in the debate on EDAs between moral beliefs and other kinds of beliefs, insofar as only the former are regarded as vulnerable to EDAs. First, we will analyze some significant debunking positions in metaethics in order to show that they do not provide adequate justification for such an epistemic disanalogy. Then, we will assess whether they can avoid the accusation of being epistemically incoherent by adopting the same evolutionary account for all kinds of beliefs. In other words, once it is argued that Darwinism has a corrosive impact on metaethics, what if its universal acid cannot be contained? (shrink)
The communicative affordances of the participatory web have opened up new and multifarious channels for the proliferation of hate. In particular, women navigating the cybersphere seem to be the target of a disproportionate amount of hostility. This paper explores the contexts, approaches and conceptual synergies around research on online misogyny within the new communicative paradigm of social media communication. The paper builds on the core principle that online misogyny is demonstrably and inherently a discourse; therefore, the field is envisaged at (...) the intersection of digital media scholarship, discourse theorization and critical feminist explications. As an ever-burgeoning phenomenon, online hate has been approached from a range of disciplinary perspectives but has only been partially mapped at the interface of meaning making contents/processes and new mediation technologies. The paper aims to advance the state of the art by investigating online hate in general, and misogyny in particular, from the vantage point of Social Media Critical Discourse Studies ; an emerging model of theorization and operationalization of research combining tenets from Critical Discourse Studies with scholarship in digital media and technology research. Our SM-CDS approach to online misogyny demarcates itself from insinuation whereby the phenomenon is reduced to digital communicative affordances per se and argues in favor of a double critical contextualization of research findings at both digital participatory as well as social and cultural levels. (shrink)
This study investigates the performance measurement systems adopted by companies to manage their social responsibility activities, a theme that remains under-researched despite the important role that these mechanisms may play in helping firms control and improve their social performance. An integrative model is developed to examine how the three fundamental drivers of corporate social strategies, i.e., business motivations, perceived stakeholder pressures, and top management’s social commitment, influence the use of social performance indicators for internal decision-making and control and how such (...) use impacts companies’ social and economic performance. The results from a survey of 97 Italian companies suggest that economic motivations and top management’s commitment are associated with a more intensive use of social performance indicators for decision-making and control, whereas perceived pressures from stakeholders do not represent a significant determinant of such use. The use of social performance indicators, in turn, is found to directly influence a firm’s social performance and, indirectly, its bottom line. (shrink)
In this paper, I criticize Mark Sainsbury's proposal concerning the semantic analysis of fictional discourse, as it has been put forward in chapter 6 of his Reference without Referents. His main thesis is that fictional names do not refer, and hence statements containing them are genuinely false and must be interpreted in terms of true paraphrases, arrived at on a case-by-case basis. In my opinion, the proposal has a problem derived from the fact that the relation between some problematic examples (...) -"Holmes is a detective", "Tony Blair admires Holmes"- and their suggested paraphrases needs to be clarified and further elaborated. /// En este artículo analizo críticamente el análisis semántico de los enunciados que contienen nombres de ficción propuesto por Mark Sainsbury en el capítulo 6 de su libro Reference without Referents. Su tesis principal es que los nombres de ficción carecen de referentes y, por lo tanto, los enunciados que los contienen son estrictamente falsos y deben ser interpretados en términos de ciertas paráfrasis. En mi opinión, la propuesta tiene el problema de que la relación entre ejemplos problemáticos de tales enunciados, como "Holmes es detective" o "Tony Blair admira a Holmes", y las paráfrasis ofrecidas requiere mayor desarrollo y fundamentación. (shrink)
Epistemic transparency tells us that, if an agent S knows a given proposition p , then S knows that she knows that p . This idea is usually encoded in the so-called KK principle of epistemic logic. The paper develops an argument in favor of a moderate version of KK , which I dub quasi-transparency , as a normative rather than a descriptive principle. In the second Section I put forward the suggestion that epistemic transparency is not a demand of (...) ideal rationality, but of ideal epistemic responsibility, and hence that ideally responsible agents verify transparency principles of some sort; I also contend that their satisfaction should not be tied to an internalist epistemology. The central argument in favor of transparency is then addressed in Sections 3 to 8, through the development of a formal system. I show that, in a well-behaved formal setting, a moderate version of transparency is imposed upon us as a result of a number of independent decisions on the structure of higher-order probabilities, as long as we request that our probability and knowledge attributions cohere with each other. Thus I give a rationale to build a model for a hierarchy of languages with different levels of knowledge and probability operators; we obtain an analogous to KK for successive knowledge operators without actually demanding transitivity. The formal argument reinforces the philosophical intuition that epistemic transparency is an important desideratum we should not be too ready to dismiss. (shrink)
In a recent paper Samir Okasha has suggested an application of Arrow’s impossibility theorem to theory choice. When epistemic virtues are interpreted as ‘voters’ in charge of ranking competing theories, and there are more than two theories at stake, the final ordering is bound to coincide with the one proposed by one of the voters, provided a number of seemingly reasonable conditions are in place. In a similar spirit, Jacob Stegenga has shown that Arrow’s theorem applies to the amalgamation of (...) evidence; the ‘voters’ here are the different sources of evidence. As with Okasha’s proposal, it is not clear how to avoid Arrow’s pessimistic conclusion.In this paper we develop a novel argument that purports to show that, in typical examples, Arrow’s result does not obtain when dealing with evidence amalgamation. The reason is that we cannot escape the well-known Duhem problem: the evidence actually confirms complex conjunctions that include various auxiliary hypotheses. We argue that confirmational holism induces us to restrict the domain of a reasonable amalgamation function, thus violating one of Arrow’s conditions. The upshot is that we are now able to see the Duhem problem under a different, positive light – namely, as a phenomenon that makes the aggregation of the evidence possible in the first place, when there are at least three options on the table. (shrink)
Some propositions are structurally unknowable for certain agents. Let me call them ‘Moorean propositions’. The structural unknowability of Moorean propositions is normally taken to pave the way towards proving a familiar paradox from epistemic logic—the so-called ‘Knowability Paradox’, or ‘Fitch’s Paradox’—which purports to show that if all truths are knowable, then all truths are in fact known. The present paper explores how to translate Moorean statements into a probabilistic language. A successful translation should enable us to derive a version of (...) Fitch’s Paradox in a probabilistic setting. I offer a suitable schematic form for probabilistic Moorean propositions, as well as a concomitant proof of a probabilistic Knowability Paradox. Moreover, I argue that traditional candidates to play the role of probabilistic Moorean propositions will not do. In particular, we can show that violations of the so-called ‘Reflection Principle’ in probability need not yield structurally unknowable propositions. Among other things, this should lead us to question whether violating the Reflection Principle actually amounts to a clear case of epistemic irrationality, as it is often assumed. This result challenges the importance of the principle as a tool to assess both synchronic and diachronic rationality—a topic which is largely independent of Fitch’s Paradox—from a somewhat unexpected source. (shrink)
In this comprehensive collection of essays, most of which appear for the first time, eminent scholars from many disciplines—philosophy, economics, sociology, political science, demography, theology, history, and social psychology—examine the causes, nature, and consequences of present-day consumption patterns in the United States and throughout the world.
The so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. When applied to morality, such arguments are intended to undermine moral realism. In this paper I will discuss Andreas Mogensen’s recent effort to secure moral realism against EDAs. Mogensen attempts to undermine the challenge provided by EDAs in metaethics through the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes in biology. The problem with this move is that the proximate/ultimate distinction is misconceived. (...) If ultimate and proximate causes are properly understood to be complementary, such distinction cannot affect EDAs in metaethics. Therefore, I will argue, Mogensen’s argument fails and moral realism is still in danger. (shrink)
Evidence-based approaches to policy-making are growing in popularity. A generally embraced view is that with the appropriate evidence at hand, decision and policy making will be optimal, legitimate and publicly accountable. In practice, however, evidence-based policy making is constrained by a variety of problems of evidence. Some of these problems will be explored in this article, in the context of the debates on evidence from which they originate. It is argued that the source of much disagreement might be a failure (...) to addressing crucial philosophical assumptions that inform, often silently, these debates. Three controversial questions will be raised which appear central to some of the challenges faced by evidence-based policy making: firstly, how do certain types of facts candidate themselves as evidence; secondly, how do we decide what evidence we have, and how much of it; and thirdly, can we combine evidence. In addressing these questions it will be shown how a philosophically informed debate might prove instrumental in clarifying and settling practical difficulties. (shrink)
Other-perspective taking, distancing, time discounting as well as risk and loss aversion highly affect decision-making. Even though they influence each other, so far these cognitive processes have been unrelated or only partly related to each other in neuroscience. This article proposes a philosophical interpretation of these cognitive processes that is elaborated in the updated theory of Adam Smith’s prudence. The UTSP is inspired by Smith’s account of prudence and is in line with the neuroscientific and behavioral studies on OPT, distancing, (...) time discounting as well as risk and loss aversion. The UTSP represents a framework aiming to interpret and connect these cognitive processes and providing a consistent and empirically sound account of a “Smithianly” prudent style of decision-making. The two pillars of the UTSP are the shift of perspective in space and time and loss aversion. On the basis of this theory, a normative updated theory of Smithian prudence is outlined. The latter is useful for moral philosophy for two reasons: firstly, according to preliminary evidence, it is effective in guiding the agent in decisional contexts in which her well-being is at stake and she can affect other people with her actions. Secondly, since the NUTSP is based on neuroscientific findings on decision-making, it has a sound empirical basis that prevents a source of alienation for the agent. (shrink)
I develop a strategy for representing epistemic states and epistemic changes that seeks to be sensitive to the difference between voluntary and involuntary aspects of our epistemic life, as well as to the role of pragmatic factors in epistemology. The model relies on a particular understanding of the distinction between full belief and acceptance , which makes room for the idea that our reasoning on both practical and theoretical matters typically proceeds in a contextual way. Within this framework, I discuss (...) how agents can rationally shift their credal probability functions so as to consciously modify some of their contextual acceptances; the present account also allows us to represent how the very set of contexts evolves. Voluntary credal shifts, in turn, might provoke changes in the agent’s beliefs, but I show that this is actually a side effect of performing multiple adjustments in the total lot of the agent’s acceptance sets. In this way we obtain a model that preserves many pre-theoretical intuitions about what counts as adequate rationality constraints on our actual practices—and hence about what counts as an adequate, normative epistemological perspective. (shrink)
This paper focuses on the treatment of prudence by Adam Smith. Smith was one of the few philosophers to conceive of it as a moral virtue. Smithian prudence is the care of one's own happiness that is limited and ennobled, respectively, by the sense of justice and that of self-command. A reconstruction of Smith's view of prudence helps to clarify three central points in his thought: the interaction between the agent's economic and moral dimensions, the relationship between the self and (...) the other, and the dialectical tension between partiality and impartiality. Furthermore, Smithian prudence is important, in itself, as an approach to the above-mentioned points that is still viable. These three points are recurrent crucial issues in the history of ethics. (shrink)
The purpose of the present article is to disentangle both Parfit’s and Whitehead’s views on personal identity. Issues regarding what it means to be a singular individual, how a person can remain the same over time, and what makes an individual an original being with specific characteristics will be examined.
Research has linked witnessing abuse to nonhuman animals with the committal of such acts. This study reports frequency data based on adolescents' self-reported witnessing of animal abuse and involvement in animal-directed behaviors. The study investigates associations between witnessing abuse and engaging in both positive and negative animal-directed behaviors. 281 adolescents, 12-18 years of age, completed measures of animal cruelty and the humane treatment of animals. As predicted, the study found a history of witnessing animal abuse associated with significantly higher levels (...) of animal cruelty. The study reported significantly higher levels of cruelty for those who had witnessed a friend, relative, parent, or sibling abuse an animal and significantly lower levels for those who had witnessed a stranger abuse an animal. Participants who "Frequently" witnessed animal abuse reported significantly higher levels of cruelty than those who viewed abuse "A few times". There was no association found between humane treatment of animals and the witnessing of animal abuse. Positive influences, peer mentors and humane education, would help to combat this cycle of abuse. (shrink)
In this paper I am concerned with the problem of applying the notion of rigidity to general terms. In Naming and Necessity, Kripke has clearly suggested that we should include some general terms among the rigid ones, namely, those common nouns semantically correlated with natural substances, species and phenomena, in general, natural kinds -'water', 'tiger', 'heat'- and some adjectives -'red', 'hot', 'loud'. However, the notion of rigidity has been defined for singular terms; after all, the notion that Kripke has provided (...) us with is the notion of a rigid designator. But general terms do not designate single individuals: rather, they apply to many of them. In sum, the original concept of rigidity cannot be straightforwardly applied to general terms: it has to be somehow redefined in order to make it cover them. As is known, two main positions have been put forward to accomplish that task: the identity of designation conception, according to which a rigid general term is one that designates the same property or kind in all possible worlds, and the essentialist conception, which conceives of a rigid general term as an essentialist one, namely, a term that expresses an essential property of an object. My purpose in the present paper is to defend a particular version of the identity of designation conception: on the proposed approach, a rigid general term will be one that expresses the same property in all possible worlds and names the property it expresses. In my opinion, the position can be established on the basis of an inference to the best explanation of our intuitive interpretation and evaluation, relative to counterfactual circumstances, of statements containing different kinds of general terms, which is strictly analogous to our intuitive interpretation and evaluation, relative to such circumstances, of statements containing different kinds of singular ones. I will argue that it is possible to offer a new solution to the trivialization problem that is thought to threaten all versions of the identity of designation conception of rigidity. Finally, I will also sketch a solution to the so-called 'over-generalization and under-generalization problems', both closely related to the above-mentioned one. (shrink)
Moral dilemmas have long been debated in moral philosophy without reaching a definitive consensus. The majority of value pluralists attribute their origin to the incommensurability of moral values, i.e. the statement that, since moral values are many and different in nature, they may conflict and cannot be compared. Neuroscientific studies on the neural common currency show that the comparison between allegedly incompatible alternatives is a practical possibility, namely it is the basis of the way in which the agent evaluates choice (...) options. Indeed, both in economic and moral decision-making, the value of options is represented and directly compared in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Therefore, we contend that moral dilemmas do not originate from value incommensurability and, on the basis of the neuroscientific discoveries on the neural currency, we derive the implications for the philosophical debate on moral dilemmas. We also provide a possible connection between the experience of moral dilemmas and their neural representation: one of the causes of the individual’s indecision is the neural tie, i.e. the condition in which two options have the same value at neural level, and her regret could be due to the motivational force of the rejected option that is still signalled by affective processes in the brain. We apply this interpretation and the common currency hypothesis to vocational decisions and propose that, although from the agent’s perspective the options are qualitatively different, they may be nevertheless equivalent at neural level. This can be seen as a reason for downgrading the importance commonly attributed to the risk of making the “wrong choice”. (shrink)
How does science enter policy making, and for what purpose? Surely consulting scientific facts in making policy is done with a view to making policy decisions more reliable, and ultimately more objective. In this paper I address the way/s by which science contributes to achieving objectivity in policy making and social debate, and argue that objectivity is not exhausted by what scientific evidence contributes to either. In policy making and social debates, scientific evidence is taken into account alongside other relevant (...) factors. Such complex contexts of practical interaction constitute a challenge both for the objectivity of scientific evidence, and for the objectivity of the role of the scientist in the policy-making process I analyse a case study - the ongoing debate over the spread of bovine TB in the UK - that displays some of the worries and several of the aspects we ought to keep in mind when we bring scientific objectivity to bear on social debate and policy making. I argue in favour of a picture where scientific objectivity enters a productive and effective dialogue with practical objectivity. (shrink)
The paper suggests a way of modeling belief changes within the tradition of formal belief revision theories. The present model extends the scope of traditional proposals, such as AGM, so as to take care of “structural belief changes” – a type of radical shifts that is best illustrated with, but not limited to, instances of scientific discovery; we obtain AGM expansions and contractions as limiting cases. The representation strategy relies on a non-standard use of a semantic machinery. More precisely, the (...) model seeks to correlate knowledge states with interpretations of a given formal language L, in such a way that the epistemic state of an agent at a given time gives rise to a picture of how things could be, if there weren’t anything else to know. Interpretations of L proceed along supervaluational ideas; hence, the model as a whole can be seen as a particular application of supervaluational semantics to epistemic matters. (shrink)
RESEÑAS. Margarita M. Valdés y Miguel Ángel Fernández (compiladores), Normas, virtudes y valores epistémicos. Ensayos de epistemología contemporánea, Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, UNAM, México, 2011, 550 pp.
The image of man’s dominion over nature is deeply rooted in Western thought. It first appears, in different forms, in the Book of Genesis. It also reappears as one of the leading images of the emerging ‘new science’ in the 16th century. Francis Bacon puts particular emphasis on this image, which he takes to be the guiding principle of his new vision of science and practical knowledge. It is this vision which, as is widely acknowledged, will open the path to (...) modern science. In what follows I will first sketch some relevant background for the emergence of this image. I will then analyse how the image takes shape in the context of Bacon’s philosophical project, paying attention to the novelties of his project but also to its continuities with tradition. It is indeed this mixture of past and future which suggests how natural order and human rule come to speak as one voice in the vision of the new science. (shrink)
This paper is focused on the abstractist theory of fictional discourse, namely, the semantic theory according to which fictional names refer to abstract entities. Two semantic problems that arise in relation to that position are analysed: the first is the problem of accounting for the intuitive truth of typically fictive uses of statements containing fictional names; the second is the one of explaining some problematic metafictive uses, in particular, the use of intuitively true negative existentials.Este artículo se ocupa de la (...) teoría abstracta del discurso de ficción, a saber, la teoría semántica según la cual los nombres de ficción refieren a entidades abstractas. Se analizan dos problemas semánticos que surgen en relación con esta posición: el primero es el problema de dar cuenta de la verdad intuitiva de usos típicamente fictivos de enunciados que contienen nombres de ficción; el segundo es el de explicar algunos usos metafictivos problemáticos, en particular el uso de existenciales negativos intuitivamente verdaderos. (shrink)