Jonathan Lear in Radical Hope tackles the idea of cultural devastation, in the specific case of the Crow Indians. What do we mean by “annihilation” of a culture? The moral point of view that he imagines as he reconstructs the eve and aftermath of this annihilation is not second personal, of obligation, but first personal, in the collective and singular, as told by the Crows, with Lear as “analyst.” Radical Hope is a study of representative character of a people—of virtue, (...) courage, resilience, and hope in the face of cultural collapse. The leading questions are shaped by ancient Greek ethics, but with a twist: On the brink of cultural death , what counts for us as good living and what is the nature of the virtues or excellences that constitute it? How might a leader, a phronimos , exemplify it? This puts it too narrowly. The questions, also, are Wittgensteinian: How does a nation go on, when the concepts and way of life it has lived by for centuries are no more? What does it mean to go on? What does it mean to stop when the marks of going on are no longer? (shrink)
Jonathan Lear in "Radical Hope" tackles the idea of cultural devastation, in the specific case of the Crow Indians. What do we mean by "annihilation" of a culture? The moral point of view that he imagines as he reconstructs the eve and aftermath of this annihilation is not second personal, of obligation, but first personal, in the collective and singular, as told by the Crows, with Lear as "analyst." "Radical Hope" is a study of representative character of a people—of virtue, (...) courage, resilience, and hope in the face of cultural collapse. The leading questions are shaped by ancient Greek ethics, but with a twist: On the brink of cultural death, what counts for us as good living and what is the nature of the virtues or excellences that constitute it? How might a leader, a phronimos, exemplify it? This puts it too narrowly. The questions, also, are Wittgensteinian: How does a nation go on, when the concepts and way of life it has lived by for centuries are no more? What does it mean to go on? What does it mean to stop when the marks of going on are no longer? (shrink)
Most traditional accounts of Aristotle's theory of ethical education neglect its cognitive aspects. This book asserts that, in Aristotle's view, excellence of character comprises both the sentiments and practical reason. Sherman focuses particularly on four aspects of practical reason as they relate to character: moral perception, choicemaking, collaboration, and the development of those capacities in moral education. Throughout the book, she is sensitive to contemporary moral debates, and indicates the extent to which Aristotle's account of practical reason provides an (...) alternative to theories of impartial reason. (shrink)
While few soldiers may have read the works of Epictetus or Marcus Aurelius, it is undoubtedly true that the ancient philosophy known as Stoicism guides the actions of many in the military. Soldiers and seamen learn early in their training "to suck it up," to endure, to put aside their feelings and to get on with the mission. Stoic Warriors is the first book to delve deeply into the ancient legacy of this relationship, exploring what the Stoic philosophy actually is, (...) the role it plays in the character of the military (both ancient and modern), and its powerful value as a philosophy of life. Marshalling anecdotes from military history--ranging from ancient Greek wars to World War II, Vietnam, and Iraq--Nancy Sherman illuminates the military mind and uses it as a window on the virtues of the Stoic philosophy, which are far richer and more interesting than our popularized notions. Sherman--a respected philosopher who taught at the US Naval Academy--explores the deep, lasting value that Stoicism can yield, in issues of military leadership and character; in the Stoic conception of anger and its control (does a warrior need anger to go to battle?); and in Stoic thinking about fear and resilience, grief and mourning, and the value of camaraderie and brotherhood. Sherman concludes by recommending a moderate Stoicism, where the task for the individual, both civilian and military, youth and adult, is to temper control with forgiveness, and warrior drive and achievement with humility and humor. Here then is a perceptive investigation of what makes Stoicism so compelling not only as a guiding principle for the military, but as a philosophy for anyone facing the hardships of life. (shrink)
Drawing on in-depth interviews with service women and men, Nancy Sherman weaves narrative with a philosophical and psychological analysis of the moral and emotional attitudes at the heart of the afterwars. Afterwar offers no easy answers for reintegration. It insists that we widen the scope of veteran outreach to engaged, one-on-one relationships with veterans.
Sherman presents a slightly revised definition of empathy, in which empathy is the cognitive ability to place oneself in the world of another, imagining all of the realities, feelings, and circumstances of that person in the context of their world.
In the 1960s, before the promulgation of Humanae Vitae, the Catholic philosophers Elizabeth Anscombe and Herbert McCabe OP debated whether there are convincing natural law arguments for the claim that contraception violates an exceptionless moral norm. This article revisits those arguments and critiques McCabe’s approach to natural law, concerned primarily with ‘social sin’ and not simply violations of ‘right reason,’ as one particularly ill-suited to addressing questions in sexual ethics and unable both to distinguish properly between certain forms of (...) sexual wrongdoing and more obviously social sins such as theft, and also to distinguish between ‘natural’ and ‘unnatural’ sexual acts. Anscombe’s views, I argue, are closer to those of Thomas Aquinas and provide reasons for making the distinctions McCabe does not. An argument concerning the nature of the institution of marriage and the effects of non-marital acts on that institution is proposed as a way of strengthening Anscombe’s argument that contraception violates an exceptionless moral norm. (shrink)
In her recent book Private Government, Elizabeth Anderson makes a powerful but pragmatic case against the abuses experienced by employees in conventional corporations. The purpose of this review-essay is to contrast Anderson’s pragmatic critique of many abuses in the employment relation with a principled critique of the employment relationship itself. This principled critique is based on the theory of inalienable rights that descends from the Reformation doctrine of the inalienability of conscience down through the Enlightenment in the abolitionist, democratic, (...) and feminist movements. That theory was the basis for the abolition of the voluntary slavery or self-sale contract, the voluntary non-democratic constitution (pactum subjectionis), and the voluntary coverture marriage contract in today’s democratic countries. When understood in modern terms, that same theory applies as well against the voluntary self-rental or employment contract that is the basis for our current economic system. (shrink)
Elizabeth Fricker’s writings on testimonial justification include some contrary ideas. In this paper, we propose Fricker’s theory of justification coherently and explain why she speaks of different ideas and which idea is more compatible with her general theory of knowledge. Fricker proposes three conditions for justification of testimonial beliefs for adults by appealing to commonsense world-picture and defining a paradigm case of testimony: justified belief of using speech act of telling, justified belief of the sincere of testifier and the (...) competence of testifier. The speech act of telling itself requires that for example, testifier at least apparently speaks from his knowledge and thinks that hearer is ignorant of the testimony. We argue that various parts of Fricker’s theory face problems. For example, double standard about children and adults in testimonial justification is against unity of conception of knowledge. چون تعداد کلمات کمتر از 150 کلمه بود این عبارت در اینجا قرار گرفت تا اجازه عبور از این مرحله داده شود. (shrink)
Virtue ethics is now well established as a substantive, independent normative theory. It was not always so. The revival of virtue ethics was initially spurred by influential criticisms of other normative theories, especially those made by Elizabeth Anscombe, Philippa Foot, John McDowell, Alasdair MacIntyre, and Bernard Williams. 1 Because of this heritage, virtue ethics is often associated with anti-theory movements in ethics and more recently, moral particularism. There are, however, quite a few different approaches to ethics that can reasonably (...) claim to be versions of virtue ethics. The predominant strand of virtue ethics is broadly Aristotelian, although some accounts bear little resemblance to Aristotle's. In its most general form, virtue ethics is compatible with a wide range of meta-ethical and normative commitments. This diversity makes it difficult to compare virtue ethics as such with other normative theories. It can also be a challenge to see just what the various versions of virtue ethics have in common with each other. Three major types of virtue ethics are represented in the books by Rosalind Hursthouse, Michael Slote, and Christine Swanton, recommended in the following section. Each of these book sets forward a considerably self-standing form of virtue ethics. The authors differ on central issues such as the relationship between virtue and flourishing and the link between virtuous agents and right or virtuous actions. Unlike Swanton and Slote, Hursthouse defends a version of ethical naturalism that has affinities with theories recently defended by Philippa Foot and Alasdair MacIntyre. 2 Slote's theory is agent-based, meaning that his account derives judgments about the moral status of actions from moral features of agents. Hursthouse and Swanton defend theories according to which the moral status of an action depends on its broader relationship to human flourishing (Hursthouse) or whether it hits the target of a virtue (Swanton). Although these three books presently form the core of contemporary virtue ethics, there are other approaches that might reasonably be described as versions of virtue ethics, such as those presented by Julia Driver, Linda Zagzebski, and Robert Adams. 3 There are also, of course, a large number of articles in which authors defend or criticize tenets that are central to most versions of virtue ethics. Some recent articles on especially important topics are listed in the following section. Current 'hot topics' in virtue ethics include whether its account of right action is adequate and whether virtue ethics is at odds with empirical psychology. Articles on these debates and others are listed in the following section. Author Recommends: Books These three books are foundational works in contemporary virtue ethics, and represent quite different approaches to virtue ethics. For each book, I have also listed an article by the same author in which he or she articulates some similar themes. Those pressed for time or space on a syllabus might start by examining those articles. 1. Hursthouse, Rosalind. On Virtue Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999. Hursthouse defends a eudaimonistic version of virtue ethics with Aristotelian affinities. *See also Hursthouse, Rosalind. 'Normative Virtue Ethics.' How Should One Live? Ed. Roger Crisp. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996. 19–36. 2. Slote, Michael. Morals from Motives. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001. Slote defends a version of virtue ethics based on evaluations of motives, drawing on historical figures like Martineau, Hutcheson, and Hume. Note that this book represents a fairly significant departure from his first book in virtue ethics, From Morality to Virtue (New York: Oxford, 1992). *See also Slote, Michael. 'Agent-Based Virtue Ethics.' Virtue Ethics . Ed. Roger Crisp and Michael Slote. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. 3. Swanton, Christine. Virtue Ethics: A Pluralistic View. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003. Swanton defends a pluralistic, non-eudaimonistic version of virtue ethics that draws on influences ranging from Aristotle to Nietzsche to contemporary psychoanalytic theory. *See also Swanton, Christine. 'A Virtue Ethical Account of Right Action.' Ethics 112 (2001): 32–52. Articles The following is a selection of articles that address some of the central and controversial topics within virtue ethics. 1. Annas, Julia. 'Being Virtuous and Doing the Right Thing.' Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 78.2 (2004): 61–75. This article addresses the problem of action guidance and the role that an account of right action should play in virtue ethics. 2. Conly, Sarah. 'Flourishing and the Failure of the Ethics of Virtue.' Midwest Studies in Philosophy Vol. XIII, Ethical Theory: Character and Virtue . Eds. P. French et al. South Bend: University of Notre Dame Press, 1988. 83–96. This article articulates the central problems faced by versions of virtue ethics that rely on a conception of human flourishing. 3. Das, Ramon. 'Virtue Ethics and Right Action.' Australasian Journal of Philosophy 81 (2003): 324–39. This article raises objections about insularity and circularity to accounts of right action presented by Hursthouse, Slote, and Swanton. 4. Doris, John M. 'Persons, Situations, and Virtue Ethics.' Nous 32 (1998): 504–30. This article argues that situationist psychology undermines the concept of a character trait on which virtue ethicists rely. An expanded version of this criticism can be found in Doris, Lack of Character, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. 5. Hursthouse, Rosalind. 'Virtue Theory and Abortion.' Philosophy and Public Affairs 20.3 (1991): 223–46. This article argues that virtue ethics is capable of providing action guidance in the difficult problem of abortion. 6. Johnson, Robert N. 'Virtue and Right.' Ethics 113 (2003): 810–34. This article raises several objections against the accounts of right action in virtue ethics, one of which is that they cannot make sense of the rightness of self-improving actions. The criticism is directly primarily at Hursthouse's theory, but Swanton and Slote are discussed as well. 7. Kamtekar, Rachana. 'Situationism and Virtue Ethics on the Content of Our Character.' Ethics 114 (2004): 458–91. This article argues that situationist critiques of virtue ethics rely on a mistaken understanding of virtuous character. 8. Kawall, Jason. 'Virtue Theory and Ideal Observers.' Philosophical Studies 109 (2002): 197– 222. This article argues for an ideal observer-style account of right action in virtue ethics. 9. Nussbaum, Martha. 'Non-Relative Virtues: An Aristotelian Approach.' Midwest Studies in Philosophy, Vol. XIII, Ethical Theory: Character and Virtue . Ed. P. French et al. South Bend: University of Notre Dame Press, 1988. 32–53. This article presents a view of the virtues on which the virtues are excellences in spheres of activity. Although the spheres are common to all humans, the manifestation of excellence in a given sphere is subject to cultural variation. 10. Sreenivasan, Gopal. 'Errors about Errors: Virtue Theory and Trait Attribution.' Mind 111 (2002): 47–68. This article addresses the situationist critique of character traits by arguing that virtue ethics does not depend on the concept of a character trait as Doris and others understand it. 11. Stangl, Rebecca. 'A Dilemma for Particularist Virtue Ethics.' Philosophical Quarterly 58 (2008): 665–78. This article addresses the relationship between virtue ethics and radical moral particularism, arguing that the latter may have undesirable consequences for virtue ethicists unless they accept the unity of the virtues. 12. Stohr, Karen. 'Contemporary Virtue Ethics.' Philosophy Compass 1.1 (January 2006): 22–7. This article provides an overview and analysis of contemporary virtue ethics. It includes discussion of main problems and challenges for the future. 13. Stohr, Karen. 'Moral Cacophony: When Continence is a Virtue.' Journal of Ethics 7 (2003): 339–63. This article raises problems for the commonly accepted distinction between virtue and continence, arguing that the mixed emotions normally associated with continence are sometimes characteristic of virtue instead. 14. van Zyl, Liezl. 'Agent-Based Virtue Ethics and the Problem of Action Guidance.' Journal of Moral Philosophy 6 (2009): 50–69. This article defends agent-based virtue ethics against objections that it cannot distinguish agent-appraisal from act-appraisal and that it cannot provide adequate action guidance. Anthologies 1. Crisp, Roger, ed. How Should One Live? Essays on the Virtues. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996. This is one of the first virtue ethics anthologies published, and so reflects a correspondingly earlier picture of the field. The essays, however, are important and interesting in their own right, and cover a broad array of topics. 2. Crisp, Roger and Michael Slote, eds. Virtue Ethics . Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. This anthology was published over a decade ago and does not capture recent developments in the field. It is, however, an admirably thorough collection of the most influential essays from the early days of virtue ethics, both promoting and criticizing it. 3. Darwall, Stephen, ed. Virtue Ethics. Oxford: Blackwell, 2003. This anthology is distinctive in that it includes material from Aristotle, Hutcheson, and Hume, along with some central contemporary sources. 4. Walker, Rebecca L. and Philip J. Ivanhoe, eds. Working Virtue. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007. This recent anthology focuses on applied virtue ethics and has an excellent selection of essays by influential thinkers on topics including the environment, business, medicine, war, and poverty. Online Sources 'Virtue Ethics', Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ethics-virtue/ Entry written by Rosalind Hursthouse and updated in 2007. 'Bibliography on Virtue Ethics', maintained by Jörg Schroth. http://www.ethikseite.de/bib/cvirtue.pdf Extensive list of work published in virtue ethics. Updated regularly, listed in both alphabetical and chronological order, and contains abstracts of papers. 'Janusblog', maintained by Guy Axtell. http://janusblog.squarespace.com/ Blog devoted to current work in virtue ethics and virtue epistemology, although with an emphasis on the latter. It contains spirited discussion among the many contributors, as well as a library of papers. Sample Syllabus This syllabus is for a graduate seminar or intense upper-level undergraduate course. Books for purchase for this course might include the Crisp and Slote anthology, the Walker and Ivanhoe anthology, and Hursthouse's On Virtue Ethics. Week 1: The Roots of Contemporary Virtue Ethics Anscombe, Elizabeth. 'Modern Moral Philosophy' (Crisp and Slote) Foot, Philippa. 'Virtues and Vices' (Crisp and Slote) MacIntyre, Alasdair. 'The Nature of the Virtues' (Crisp and Slote) Week 2: The Roots of Contemporary Virtue Ethics Stocker, Michael. 'The Schizophrenia of Modern Ethical Theories' (Crisp and Slote) Williams, Bernard. 'Morality, the Peculiar Institution' (Crisp and Slote) McDowell, John. 'Virtue and Reason' (Crisp and Slote) Week 3: Aristotelian Virtue Ethics Hursthouse, Rosalind. On Virtue Ethics, Part I Hursthouse, Rosalind. 'Practical Wisdom: A Mundane Account.' Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 106.3 (2006): 283–307. Stangl, Rebecca. 'A Dilemma for Particularist Virtue Ethics' Week 4: Aristotelian Virtue Ethics Hursthouse, Rosalind. On Virtue Ethics, Part II Stark, Susan. 'Virtue and Emotion.' Nous 33.5 (2001): 440–55. Stohr, Karen. 'Moral Cacophony: When Continence is a Virtue' Week 5: Aristotelian Virtue Ethics Hursthouse, Rosalind. On Virtue Ethics, Part III Conly, Sarah. 'Flourishing and the Failure of an Ethics of Virtue' Nussbaum, Martha. 'Non-Relative Virtues: An Aristotelian Approach' MacIntyre, Alasdair. Dependent Rational Animals, chapter 10 Week 6: Agent-Based Virtue Ethics Slote, Michael 'Agent-Based Virtue Ethics' (Crisp and Slote) Slote, Michael, Morals from Motives, chapters 1 and 3 Week 7: Pluralistic Virtue Ethics Swanton, Christine. Virtue Ethics: A Pluralistic View , chapters 3, 4, and 11. Week 8: The Situationist Critique of Virtue Ethics Doris, John. 'Persons, Situations, and Virtue Ethics' Kamtekar, Rachana. 'Situationism and Virtue Ethics on the Content of Our Character' Sreenivasan, Gopal. 'Errors about Errors: Virtue Theory and Trait Attribution' Merritt, Maria. 'Aristotelian Virtue and the Interpersonal Aspect of Ethical Character.' Journal of Moral Philosophy 6 (2009): 23–49. Week 11: Right Action – Problems Johnson, Robert. 'Virtue and Right' Das, Ramon. 'Virtue Ethics and Right Action' Week 12: Right Action – Virtue Ethics Solutions Annas, Julia. 'Being Virtuous and Doing the Right Thing' van Zyl, Liezl. 'Agent-Based Virtue Ethics and the Problem of Action Guidance' Kawall, Jason. 'Virtue Theory and Ideal Observers' Week 13: Virtue Ethics and Professional Roles Pelligrino, Edmund. 'Professing Medicine, Virtue Based Ethics, and the Retrieval of Professionalism' (Walker and Ivanhoe) Swanton, Christine. 'Virtue Ethics, Role Ethics, and Business Ethics' (Walker and Ivanhoe) Sherman, Nancy. 'Virtue and a Warrier's Anger' (Walker and Ivanhoe) Week 14: Virtue Ethics and the Non-Human World Hursthouse, Rosalind. 'Environmental Virtue Ethics' (Walker and Ivanhoe) Walker, Rebecca. 'The Good Life for Non-Human Animals: What Virtue Requires of Humans' (Walker and Ivanhoe) Focus Questions 1. What is the relationship between virtue and flourishing? Are the virtues necessary for flourishing? Sufficient? 2. Can virtue ethics provide an adequate account of right action? 3. On what concept of a character trait does virtue ethics rely, and does situationist psychology undermine it? 4. Is the project of ethical naturalism a plausible one? To what extent does the success of Aristotelian virtue ethics depend on it? 5. How does virtue ethics affect the way that applied ethics is done? (shrink)
How might the psycho-social effects of chronic skin disease, its treatments (and discontents) be figuratively expressed in writing and painting? Does the art reveal common denominators in experience and representation? If so, how do we understand the cryptic language of these expressions? By examining the works of artists with chronic skin diseases—John Updike, Elizabeth Bishop, and Zelda Fitzgerald—some common features can be noted. Chronically broken skin can fracture the ego or self-perception, resulting in a disturbed body image, which leads (...) to personality disorders and co-morbid affective disorders such as anxiety and depression. The vertiginous feeling that results can be noted in the paradoxical characters, figures, and psyches portrayed in the works of these artists. This essay will examine the more specific ways in which artists disclose and/or conceal their experiences and the particular ways in which these manifest in their works. While certain nuances exist, the common denominators give us a starting point for developing an eczema aesthetic, a code for interpreting the ways in which artists’ experiences with skin disease manifest in their works. (shrink)
As James Chapman has famously put it in National Identity and the British Historical Film, historical films are “as much about the present in which they are made as they are about [the] past in which they are set.” This article discusses Shekhar Kapur’s aesthetically ground-breaking Elizabeth and its sequel Elizabeth: The Golden Age focusing on two main aspects, namely national identity issues and the representation of the enemy. Kapur’s Elizabeth films will first be placed within the (...) larger context of Elizabeth’s film and television appearances. Informed by Giroux’s critical methodology guidelines, in an attempt to “historize” the films under scrutiny and so foster “sane historical sense,” a semiotic analysis will then be offered. Largely inspired by the tenets of Fairclough’s critical discourse analysis and Kress and Leeuwen’s visual grammar, this will draw a parallel between the verbal and visual discourses in both films. Data will finally be discussed and the contention will be made that England’s religious heritage has left indelible traces which remain latent in the English imagination, for which historical evidence will be presented. The article’s ultimate aim will be to provide evidence suggesting that, in the English case, religious and national discourses merged from the late 16th century onwards, clearly influencing not only the perception that the English had of themselves but also and crucially the image they may still have of “Other” nations. (shrink)
This edited collection sets forth a new understanding of aesthetic-moral judgment organised around three key concepts: pleasure, reflection, and accountability. The overarching theme is that art is not merely a representation or expression like any other, but that it promotes shared moral understanding and helps us engage in meaning-making. This volume offers an alternative to brain-centric and realist approaches to aesthetics. It features original essays from a number of leading philosophers of art, aesthetics, ethics, and perception, including Elizabeth Burns (...) Coleman, Garrett Cullity, Cynthia A. Freeland, Ivan Gaskell, Paul Guyer, Jane Kneller, Keith Lehrer, Mohan Matthen, Jennifer A. McMahon, Bence Nanay, Nancy Sherman, and Robert Sinnerbrink. Part I of the book analyses the elements of aesthetic experience— pleasure, preference, and imagination—with the individual conceived as part of a particular cultural context and network of other minds. The chapters in Part II explain how it is possible for cultural learning to impact these elements through consensus building, an impulse to objectivity, emotional expression, and reflection. Finally, the chapters in Part III converge on the role of dissonance, difference, and diversity in promoting cultural understanding and advancement. Social Aesthetics and Moral Judgment will appeal to philosophers of art and aesthetics, as well as to scholars in other disciplines interested in issues related to art and cultural exchange. (shrink)
Victorian poets Elizabeth Barrett (1806-1861) and Robert Browning (1812-1889) first fell in love through letters, which they began to write to each other in 1845 (Figures 1 and 2). Their growing relationship, slowly progressing from letter to first encounter and eventual secret marriage in 1846, is documented in two volumes of letters, with a plot that unfolds as warmly and compellingly as the best page-turner invented by a novelist. Both were master wordsmiths, so the beauty of their letters is (...) no surprise. But one reason Barrett Browning was such a prolific correspondent is that she spent much of her life housebound, due to an illness whose nature was never truly explained when she was alive and that has been .. (shrink)
One of the most important philosophers of recent times, Elizabeth Anscombe wrote books and articles on a wide range of topics, including the ground-breaking monograph Intention. Her work is original, challenging, often difficult, always insightful; but it has frequently been misunderstood, and its overall significance is still not fully appreciated. This book is the first major study of Anscombe's philosophical oeuvre. In it, Roger Teichmann presents Anscombe's main ideas, bringing out their interconnections, elaborating and discussing their implications, pointing out (...) objections and difficulties, and aiming to give a unified overview of her philosophy. Many of Anscombe's arguments are relevant to contemporary debates, as Teichmann shows, and on a number of topics what Anscombe has to say constitutes a powerful alternative to dominant or popular views. Among the writings discussed are Intention, "Practical Inference," "Modern Moral Philosophy," "Rules, Rights and Promises," "On Brute Facts," "The First Person," "The Intentionality of Sensation," "Causality and Determination," An Introduction to Wittgenstein's Tractatus, "The Question of Linguistic Idealism," and a number of other pieces, including some that are little known or hard to obtain. A complete bibliography of Anscombe's writings is also included. Ranging from the philosophy of action, through ethics, to philosophy of mind, metaphysics, and the philosophy of logic and language, this book is a study of one of the most significant bodies of work in modern philosophy, spanning more than fifty years, and as pertinent today as ever. (shrink)
Many problems of inequality in developing countries resist treatment by formal egalitarian policies. To deal with these problems, we must shift from a distributive to a relational conception of equality, founded on opposition to social hierarchy. Yet the production of many goods requires the coordination of wills by means of commands. In these cases, egalitarians must seek to tame rather than abolish hierarchy. I argue that bureaucracy offers important constraints on command hierarchies that help promote the equality of workers in (...) bureaucratic organizations. Bureaucracy thus constitutes a vital if limited egalitarian tool applicable to developing and developed countries alike. (shrink)
(1999). Princess Elizabeth and Descartes: The union of soul and body and the practice of philosophy. British Journal for the History of Philosophy: Vol. 7, No. 3, pp. 503-520. doi: 10.1080/09608789908571042.
Extracts This article introduces an issue of Christian bioethics which examines the significance of Elizabeth Anscombe's classic article, “Modern Moral Philosophy”, on the 50th anniversary of its publication. The manifold influences of this article are explored in some detail and the current status of the three famous theses put forward by Anscombe in the article is assessed. This article also briefly introduces the other articles in this issue and loactes them within the general framework of contemporary discussions of Anscombe's (...) work. (shrink)
Cornell realists claim, among other things, that moral knowledge can be acquired in the same basic way that scientific knowledge is acquired. Recently in this journal Elizabeth Tropman has presented two arguments against this claim. In the present article, I attempt to show that the first argument attacks a straw man and the second mischaracterizes the Cornell realists' epistemology and ends up begging the question. I close by suggesting that, given Tropman's own apparent views, her objections are also probably (...) misplaced. (shrink)
What is the proper role of politics in higher education? Many policies and reforms in the academy, from affirmative action and a multicultural curriculum to racial and sexual harassment codes and movements to change pedagogical styles, seek justice for oppressed groups in society. They understand justice to require a comprehensive equality of membership: individuals belonging to different groups should have equal access to educational opportunities; their interests and cultures should be taken equally seriously as worthy subjects of study, their persons (...) treated with equal respect and concern in communicative interaction. Conservative critics of these egalitarian movements represent them as dangerous political meddling into the disinterested pursuit of knowledge. They cast the pursuit of equality as a threat to freedom of speech and academic standards. In response, some radical advocates of such programs agree that the quest for equality clashes with free speech, but view this as an argument for sacrificing freedom of speech. (shrink)
: Elizabeth Spelman has famously argued against gender realism. By and large, feminist philosophers have embraced Spelman's arguments and deemed gender realist positions counterproductive. To the contrary, Mikkola shows that Spelman's arguments do not in actual fact give good reason to reject gender realism in general. She then suggests a way to understand gender realism that does not have the adverse consequences feminist philosophers commonly think gender realist positions have.
In this article on Elizabeth Grosz's philosophy and its implications for discussions about feminist theory, I first suggest that Charles Darwin plays a particular role in Grosz's recent ontological thought. This role is to provide help in joining together two incompatible sources in her work: Gilles Deleuze's monistic ontology of a constant flow of new differentiations, on the one hand, and Luce Irigaray's thought of sexual difference as the primary ontological difference, on the other. I argue that Grosz's intellectual (...) project has developed into a grand general theory of change in which both Darwin and Irigaray are turned into ontologists in a Deleuzian vein. I then point out that Grosz's ontology also includes a political aspect, which manifests in the fact that Grosz redescribes Darwin through interpreting him primarily as a theorist of “event” and the unexpected. However, through an analysis of the discussion on Grosz between Luciana Parisi and Jami Weinstein, I speculate whether Grosz's ambition to provide a total and complete explanation of change encourages the tone of feminist discussion toward one of explanation rather than intervention. (shrink)
In his article ‘Saints and Heroes’, Urmson argues that traditional moral theories allow at most for a threefold classification of actions in terms of their worth, and that they are therefore unsatisfactory. Since the conclusion of his argument has led to the widespread use of the term ‘acts of supererogation’, and since I do not believe that such acts exist, I propose to argue that the actions with which he is concerned not only can, but should, be contained within the (...) traditional classification. (shrink)
Few political ideals galvanize as much liberal support as integration, yet few have yielded such disappointing results. During the last half-century many barriers have been broken down and workplaces, schools, neighbourhoods and families are more mixed (on many levels) than ever, yet segregation indices in American society – like most societies – remain rather significantly high. Determined to demonstrate why integration still matters, Elizabeth Anderson has written The Imperative of Integration (2010), which attempts to combine insights from the social (...) science literature with robust philosophical argument. (shrink)
This article compares early nineteenth-century English and Scottish theories of the mind and the way that it develops to findings in today's developmental psychology and neuroscience through a close observation of the work of Elizabeth Hamilton. Hamilton was a Scottish writer and philosopher who produced three pedagogical works in her lifetime, consisting of her carefully formulated philosophy of mind and practical suggestions to caretakers and educators. Although Hamilton has received relatively little attention in modern philosophical literature, her understanding of (...) the mind and the way it develops—based on her nuanced understanding of associationism and Scottish faculty psychology—is overwhelmingly supported by empirical findings today. In addition to utilizing Hamilton's work for the sake of understanding early nineteenth-century philosophy of mind, I argue that a large portion of Hamilton's work should be used to inform future research programs, early caregiving guides, and educational methods. (shrink)
This is a review of What is a Mathematical Concept? edited by Elizabeth de Freitas, Nathalie Sinclair, and Alf Coles. In this collection of sixteen chapters, philosophers, educationalists, historians of mathematics, a cognitive scientist, and a mathematician consider, problematise, historicise, contextualise, and destabilise the terms ‘mathematical’ and ‘concept’. The contributors come from many disciplines, but the editors are all in mathematics education, which gives the whole volume a disciplinary centre of gravity. The editors set out to explore and reclaim (...) the canonical question ‘what is a mathematical concept?’ from the philosophy of mathematics. This review comments on each paper in the collection. (shrink)
The Third Revolution is an examination of the historic transformations in contemporary China. Elizabeth C. Economy is director for Asia Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. According to its mission statement, the CFR is a think tank “dedicated to being a resource for … government officials, business executives, journalists, educators and students … to help them better understand the world and the foreign policy choices facing the United States.” The Third Revolution is about the societal, economic, and political (...) changes under the administration of General Secretary Xi Jinping. Published by Oxford as a CFR Book, the study is written from a foreign policy perspective with regard to strategic U.S.... (shrink)
In spite of the fact that the term ‘sexology’ was popularized in the United States by Elizabeth Osgood Goodrich Willard and that the term ‘sexual science’—which is usually attributed to Iwan Bloch as ‘Sexualwissenschaft’—was actually coined by the American phrenologist Orson Squire Fowler in 1852, the archives of American sexology have received scant attention in the period prior to Alfred Kinsey. In my article, I explore the role of Transcendentalism and phrenology in the production and development of American sexology (...) and sexual science. In particular, I argue that shifting the origins of sexology and sexual science away from Karl Heinrich Ulrichs and Karl-Maria Kertbeny and the more familiar narratives of the German invention of sexuality furnishes a radically different account of early sexology and sexual science. Rather than the unevenly homophilic sympathies of early German activists, their American counterparts promote marital, reproductive, loving sex and vilify prostitution, polygamy, masturbation, contraception, sex for pleasure, and, if they think to mention it, sodomy. In addition to this less progressive story, however, I argue that early American sexologists provide the first theories of gender and help to provide a fuller description of the politics of sexology and sexual science. (shrink)
In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Hypatia 14.4 (1999) 186-191 -/- [Access article in PDF] Simone De Beauvoir: a Critical Reader. Edited by Elizabeth Fallaize. London and New York: Routledge, 1998. As this special volume attests, there has been a recent resurgence of interest in Simone de Beauvoir. A number of books on her have been published in the last several years. However, Elizabeth Fallaize's book, Simone de Beauvoir: A Critical Reader (...) (1998), occupies a special niche. Many of its essays are excerpts from studies done of Beauvoir's work before this latest renaissance. Some of these studies are not in print in the United States. Some are perhaps unfamiliar to present-day readers or those from different disciplines. In addition, the articles reprinted here are otherwise not easily accessible. Fallaize has performed an important service by gathering them all in one place and by carefully editing, presenting, and, in some cases, translating them. -/- The book is divided into three sections, the first entitled "Readings of The Second Sex." Aside from Judith Okely's piece that assesses Beauvoir's chapter on myths from an anthropological standpoint, the essays mainly address the philosophical aspects of this work. Beauvoir herself of course swore that she was not a philosopher and that Jean-Paul Sartre's Being and Nothingness (1953) was the sole philosophical foundation for all her work. Some recent analyses have attempted to turn this picture on its head by arguing that Beauvoir was a central influence on, or even the origin of, the philosophical doctrines put forward in Being and Nothingness. None of the writers in this book addresses this issue. But two emphasize Beauvoir's intellectual independence from Sartre. -/- The Swedish scholar Eva Lundgren-Gothlin argues that Beauvoir turned to G. W. F. Hegel to find a satisfactory theoretical model with which to explain the subjugation of women (Lundgren-Gothlin's essay is taken from her book [End Page 186] Sex and Existence ) . In opposition to other scholars, she argues that the French Hegelian Alexandre Kojève, not Sartre, influenced Beauvoir's interpretation of Hegel. Following Hegel and Kojève, Beauvoir envisioned a possible resolution to the struggle for recognition—reciprocal recognition—whereas Sartre's view of self-other relations in Being and Nothingness rules such reciprocity out. However, Lundgren-Gothlin judges, Beauvoir was not critical enough of the sexist presuppositions of Hegel's thought, citing the same pronouncements Beauvoir makes that subsequent feminists have criticized. -/- Another piece that stresses Beauvoir's philosophical originality is "Beauvoir: The Weight of Situation," taken from Sonia Kruks's book Situation and Human Existence (1990). For some time, Kruks has been doing excellent work placing Beauvoir within the wider phenomenological tradition. In this piece, she argues that, starting with the early essay Pyrrhus et Cinéas (1944) and culminating in The Second Sex (1989), Beauvoir elaborated a more nuanced position on the nature and extent of human freedom than Sartre did in Being and Nothingness. According to Beauvoir, human freedom, which Sartre dramatically proclaims is absolute, can under some conditions, notably conditions of severe oppression, "be reduced to no more than a suppressed potentiality" (Fallaize 1998, 57). In The Second Sex, Beauvoir definitively breaks with the philosophical framework of Being and Nothingness by implying that a woman's situation is a general one, not individually self-constituted, and one that she cannot transcend by an act of free choice. The phenomenology of Maurice Merleau-Ponty provides a better foundation for Beauvoir's conception of subjectivity as socially mediated and embodied than does Sartre's philosophy, Kruks suggests. -/- Another piece in this section, Judith Butler's landmark essay "Sex and Gender in Simone de Beauvoir's Second Sex" (1986), highlights Beauvoir's philosophical originality in a different way. In her introduction, Fallaize points out how this essay served as a foundation for Butler's own subsequent work on a performative theory of gender. Butler argues that Beauvoir's claim that one is not born but becomes a woman implies that gender is socially constructed and not natural, as people have insisted for centuries. But to the extent that we become women, gender is not something... (shrink)
Theodore Roszak's compelling parable, The Memoirs of Elizabeth Frankenstein, provides an (eco)-feminist view of the “Night of the Living Dead Model” and suggests that only the equal union of “masculine” and “feminine” energies will help us resolve the current eco-crisis. This article further explores the consequences of the highly masculinized post-Enlightenment rationalism as demonstrated in Roszak's novel. Although this article agrees that there is a dangerous imbalance between natural/spiritual and scientific/rational viewpoints, it also stresses that the extreme genderification of (...) these energies is potentially problematic. (shrink)
This paper is a philosophical reconstruction of Elizabeth Fox-Genovese's thinking about women and feminism, and an inquiry into whether there is a conservative form of feminism. The paper argues that Fox-Genovese's endorsement of conventional social forms (like traditional marriage, motherhood, and sexual morality) contrasts strongly with feminism's criticism of these forms, and feminism's claim that they should be transformed. The paper concludes, however, that one need not call Fox-Genovese's thought "feminist" to recognize it as serious advocacy on behalf of (...) women and to include it in discussions about what is good for women. (shrink)
This essay assesses the value of social constructivist theories of science to the history of medicine. It highlights particularly the ways in which feminist theorists have turned their attention to gender as a category of analysis in scientific thinking, producing an approach to modern science that asks how it became identified with "male" objectivity, reason, and mind, set in opposition to "female" subjectivity, feeling, and nature.In the history of medicine this new work has allowed a group of scholars to better (...) explain not only how women were marginalized in the profession but also the manner in which politics, male anxiety about shifts in power relations between the sexes, social and political upheaval, professional concerns, and changes in the family all had an impact on the production of knowledge regarding the female body, including the "discovery," definition, and treatment of a wide range of female ailments, from anorexia nervosa to fibroid tumors.Building on the work in the history of medicine already accomplished, the essay offers a critical rereading of the writings of Elizabeth Blackwell, a pioneer nineteenth-century woman physician and leader of the woman's medical movement. It contends that Blackwell, who lived through a revolutionary change in medical thinking brought on by discoveries in immunology and bacteriology, remained critical of "objectivity" as the "best" form of knowing and suspicious of the laboratory medicine that promoted it so enthusiastically. Moreover, her critiques of radical objectivity and scientific reductionism deserve to be recognized as foreshadowing the maternalist strain of thinking among contemporary feminist philosophers and thinkers such as Sara Ruddick and others. (shrink)
La relación entre lengua y sexualidad recién ha comenzado a cobrar importancia dentro de los estudios socioculturales. Este trabajo explora las distintas pistas lingüísticas encriptadas en el cuento La búsqueda de Elizabeth, de Marta Pessarrodona, para desenmascarar la velada identidad sexual del personaje central. Un análisis referente al proceso de reconocimiento, búsqueda y aceptación de una identidad sexual no canónica de la protagonista validará los cuatro principios propuestos por Bucholtz y Hall : afloramiento, indexicalidad, relacionalidad y parcialidad.
Elizabeth Jennings was one of the most popular, prolific, and widely anthologized lyric poets in the second half of the twentieth century. This first biography, based on extensive archival research and interviews with Jennings's contemporaries, integrates her life and work and explores the 'inward war' the poet experienced as a result of her gender, religion, and mental fragility. Originally associated with the Movement, Jennings was sui generis, believing poetry was 'communication' and 'communion.' She wrote of nature, friendship, childhood, religion, (...) love, and art, endearing her to a wide audience. Yet lifelong depression, unbearable loneliness, unrelenting fears, poverty, and physical illness plagued her. These were exacerbated by her gender in a male-dominated literary world and an inherited Catholic worldview which initially inculcated guilt and shame. However, a tenacious drive to be a poet made her, 'the most unconditionally loved writer of her generation.' Although her claim was that the poem is not the poet, her life is tracked in her voluminous published and unpublished poetry and prose. The themes of mental illness, the importance of place, the problems associated with being an unmarried woman artist, her relationship with literary mentors and younger poets, her non-feminist feminism, and her marginality and sympathy for the outcast are all explored. It was poetry which saved her; it helped her push back darkness and discover order in the midst of chaos. Poetry was her raison d'etre. It was her life. (shrink)
Elizabeth A. Wilson offers in Gut Feminism a refreshingly new approach to the feminist debate on antidepressants, and a response to feminist tendencies of antibiologism. Taking the pharmaceutical treatment of depression as her point of departure, Wilson’s goal is twofold: to show how pharmaceutical data can be useful for conceptual innovations in feminist theory, and to argue for the necessity of feminist politics to account for its own capacity for aggression and harm. Divided in two parts that remain conceptually (...) entangled, Gut Feminism develops the argument that, although both aggression and biology can be ignored, “they cannot be defanged”. Wilson’s dynamic reading of biology is particularly attractive:... (shrink)