Human cognition is unique in the way in which it relies on combinatorial (or compositional) structures. Language provides ample evidence for the existence of combinatorial structures, but they can also be found in visual cognition. To understand the neural basis of human cognition, it is therefore essential to understand how combinatorial structures can be instantiated in neural terms. In his recent book on the foundations of language, Jackendoff described four fundamental problems for a neural instantiation of combinatorial structures: the massiveness (...) of the binding problem, the problem of 2, the problem of variables, and the transformation of combinatorial structures from working memory to long-term memory. This paper aims to show that these problems can be solved by means of neural “blackboard” architectures. For this purpose, a neural blackboard architecture for sentence structure is presented. In this architecture, neural structures that encode for words are temporarily bound in a manner that preserves the structure of the sentence. It is shown that the architecture solves the four problems presented by Jackendoff. The ability of the architecture to instantiate sentence structures is illustrated with examples of sentence complexity observed in human language performance. Similarities exist between the architecture for sentence structure and blackboard architectures for combinatorial structures in visual cognition, derived from the structure of the visual cortex. These architectures are briefly discussed, together with an example of a combinatorial structure in which the blackboard architectures for language and vision are combined. In this way, the architecture for language is grounded in perception. Perspectives and potential developments of the architectures are discussed. Key Words: binding; blackboard architectures; combinatorial structure; compositionality; language; dynamic system; neurocognition; sentence complexity; sentence structure; working memory; variables; vision. (shrink)
Als »Subjektphilosophie« hat man das neuzeitliche Denken insgesamt charakterisiert. Diese Auszeichnung verdankt das Subjekt der verwegenen Hoffnung, es eigne sich zum ultimativen Prinzip der Wissensbegründung. Das Interesse an einer Aufklärung seiner Struktur wurde dadurch jedoch in den Hintergrund gedrängt. Diese Struktur steht im Zentrum von Manfred Franks jüngstem Buch, das einen Blick auf die moderne Geschichte der Subjekttheorien mit Analysen der inneren Beschaffenheit und der Zeitlichkeit des Subjekts sowie seines Verhältnisses zur Intersubjektivität und einer Auseinandersetzung mit klassischen und neuesten analytischen (...) Theoriebildungen verbindet. Dem Begriff der Präreflexivität kommt dabei die Schlüsselrolle zu. (shrink)
‘Men kan, en dat doe ik zeker, persoonlijk van mening verschillen inzake veel van de sociaal-politieke keuzes die Dostojevski tijdens zijn leven maakte, met name in het latere deel van zijn carrière. Als journalist ontwikkelde hij zijn eigen idealistisch geformuleerde versie, opgetuigd met christelijke verwijzingen, van wat in feite Russisch imperialisme was. Maar niettemin staat vast dat zijn romans enorm hebben bijgedragen aan het levend houden van de ‘idealen van de mens’, in elk geval in de vormen die eigen zijn (...) aan de westerse cultuur, op een manier die slechts weinig andere schrijvers van zijn en onze tijd kunnen evenaren.’. (shrink)
De twee lofredenaren voor Poesjkin tijdens diens huldiging waren Toergenjev en Dostojevski. De eerste zette de dichter in het kader van de Europese literatuur van zijn dagen. Dostojevski, de slavofiel, kroonde Poesjkin als de eerste, die de Russische ziel onsterfelijk bezongen had.
This paper aims at presenting the work of Dutch architecture Hans van der Laan through a comparison with the Renaissance architect Leon Battista Alberti by stating the similarity of the role assigned to proportion in architectural design by both architects. In particular, the study will show how both Van der Laan and Alberti understood proportion and the perceptive and aesthetic values of proportioned forms as the result of an intellectual appreciation.
The paper aims at drawing the main lines of a reflection about architectonic space, starting from the comparison between two hypothesis, as much as ever different: Theodor Lipps’ spatial aesthetics and Hans van der Laan’s elemental theory. The emphasis given by both authors to the intersection between directions and way, but also to the mutual subordination between thing and space, allows to rewrite the obituary of architecture as a spatial art, according to which the Modern Style has turned the spatiality (...) into its specular visibility, into the spaciousness, into the indefinite continuity of the Bigness. (shrink)
In this article, Christi van der Westhuizen's sociopolitical contribution in her publication, Sitting Pretty: White Afrikaans Women in Postapartheid South Africa, is reviewed. In light of the official end of apartheid in 1994, South Africans are attempting to define a new identity. Van der Westhuizen's publication focusses on how the identity of white Afrikaans women, as both the oppressor and the oppressed, influences and contributes to the endeavour of a search for new identity. In deconstructing and re-imagining new identity, Van (...) der Westhuizen deconstructs the 'supporting scaffolding' of Afrikaner identity and examines the impact of white patriarchal hegemony that silences the voice of women, sexual minorities and black consciousness. The review concludes with the emphasis on the transformative role of shame, that is, the willingness to expose the false sense of goodness that we had of ourselves, as pointed out by Van der Westhuizen. In this regard, the recognition of the intersectionality of people's experiences becomes a key aspect of the endeavour of a search for new identity. (shrink)
This paper criticizes the dominant approaches to presupposition projection and proposes an alternative. Both the update semantics of Heim and the discourse representation theory of van der Sandt have problems in explicating the presuppositions of disjunctions. Moreover, Heim's approach is committed to a conception of accommodation that founders on the problem of informative presuppositions, and van der Sandt's approach is committed to a conception of accommodation that generates over-interpretations of utterances. The present approach borrows Karttunen's idea that instead of associating (...) presuppositions with sentences, we should define the conditions that contexts must meet in order to satisfy-the-presuppositions-of a sentence. However, in place of Karttunen's conception of contexts in terms of common ground, the present theory substitutes a conception of contexts as objective entities that are independent of the attitudes of the interlocutors. Contexts, so conceived, may be defined as containing sets of relevant possibilities. This allows us to define the conditions under which a context satisfies-the-presuppositions-of a disjunction. (shrink)
In Anarchy, State, and Utopia, Robert Nozick contrasts entitlement theories of justice and “traditional” theories such as Rawls', utilitarianism or egalitarianism, and advocates the former against the latter. What exactly is an entitlement theory of justice? Nozick's book offers two distinct characterizations. On the one hand, he explicitly describes “the general outlines of the entitlement theory” as maintaining “that the holdings of a person are just if he is entitled to them by the principles of justice in acquisition and transfer, (...) or by the principle of rectification of injustice ”. On the other hand, his famous “Wilt Chamberlain” argument against alternative theories is first said to apply to “non-entitlement conceptions”, and later to any “end-state principle or distributional patterned principle of justice” — which amounts to an implicit characterization of an entitlement conception as a conception of justice which is neither end-state nor patterned. (shrink)
The paper takes up the objections raised in van der Auwera (1993) against the joint analysis of the German particles schon, noch and erst published in Löbner (1989). Central to my analysis is the claim that the particles are organized in duality groups of four to which essentially the same type of analysis applies. Van der Auwera (1993) claims that already/schon, in its basic use, is different from the other three particles in having a more complex meaning which results in (...) an opposition of the particle to finally/endlich. As to the narrow-focus temporal uses he argues that the duality approach is inadequate in including improper members on the one hand, and excluding relevant particles on the other.The criticism will be refuted. After a recollection of the duality analysis in Section 2, van der Auwera's arguments against the general design of my analysis are dealt with in Section 3. It will be argued that his own analysis of already/schon and its group, as far as it is supported by the data, does not really differ from my approach. In Section 4, I will deal with the claim that finally/endlich contradicts already/schon, which if correct would provide an indirect argument against the duality analysis of schon and noch. I will argue that endlich is set apart from the particles of the schon group by the presence of a non-descriptive, expressive, meaning component. For its descriptive meaning, endlich logically entails schon and belongs to a parallel duality group of its own together with noch immer. The apparent incompatibility of finally/endlich and already/schon can be explained as a conflict between what is foregrounded by each particle, respectively. In Section 5, I will argue that, contrary to van der Auwera's claims, the narrow focus uses of schon and its kin do form proper duality groups. The existence of such uses of noch, not treated in Löbner (1989), does not invalidate the duality analysis of schon and erst. Rather, noch in its relevant narrow-focus use belongs to yet another duality group together with its dual nur noch. (shrink)
Notwithstanding the general rise of experimental disciplines in biology in the first decades of our century, in Germany and in the Netherlands the interest in the idealistic morphological tradition flourished, and compensated for a reductionistic causal approach to natural phenomena. This article analyses the influence of the German idealistic morphologists W. Lubosch and A. Meyer on the development of C.J. van der Klaauw's epistemology. It discusses the gradual incorporation of non-causal principles into van der Klaauw's concept of biology. Van der (...) Klaauw's epistemological concept of holistic biology was shaped in a critical confrontation with German idealistic morphology, and his early considerations can be interpreted as a direct impulse towards the development of his theory of functional components. Van der Klaauw's theories, being an alternative to the reductionistic experimental sciences, were among the causes of the fact that in the first half of our century biology in the Netherlands took a course deviating from the development of biology in the Anglo-American countries. (shrink)
This article explores Gerardus van der Leeuw’s view of phenomenology of religion. The phenomenological method he defended is basically a hermeneutical approach in which an observer relates personally and even existentially to the “phenomena” he studies in order to determine their essence. In his anthropology a similar way of relating to the world is discussed: the “primitive mentality” that is characterized by the “need to participate”. Both phenomenology and mentalité primitive imply a critique of modern scholarship. This fundamental criticism of (...) the prevailing approach in the humanities including religious studies explains the growing distance between van der Leeuw and the majority of scholars of religion in the decades after his death in 1950. (shrink)
A critical examination of the history of theories and uses of concepts such as 'primitive' and 'savage' in the academic study of religion in imperial, colonial and postcolonial contexts is particularly urgent in our time with its demands to decolonise Western models of knowledge production. In Savage Systems and Empire of Religion, David Chidester has contributed to this project by relating the invention and use of terms such as 'religion', 'primitive' and 'savage' by theorists of religion in European imperial metropoles (...) to South African colonial and indigenous contexts. This article intends to take Chidester's project further by relating Gerardus Van der Leeuw's phenomenological analysis of 'primitive mentality' to Chidester's analysis and postcolonial critique of imperial theories of religion. By taking animism and dreams in Chidester's and Van der Leeuw's works as example, it is argued that in spite of the latter's decontextualised use of ethnological material, a fundamental shift occurred in the judgement of 'primitive' religion from Tylor's evolutionary to Van der Leeuw's phenomenological analysis, which is contrary to claims according to which modern theories are unanimously denigratory of indigenous religions. (shrink)
Review of Jan van der Stoep's published PhD dissertation on the work of Pierre Bourdieu.en de politieke filosofie van het multiculturalisme Kok Kampen 2005. My review is in English. van der Stoep's book is in Dutch with an English summary.