What does it mean to think critically about politics at a time when inequality is increasing worldwide, when struggles for the recognition of difference are eclipsing struggles for social equality, and when we lack any credible vision of an alternative to the present order? Philosopher Nancy Fraser claims that the key is to overcome the false oppositions of "postsocialist" commonsense. Refuting the view that we must choose between "the politics of recognition" and the "politics of redistribution," Fraser argues (...) for an integrative approach that encompasses the best aspects of both. (shrink)
Refuting the argument to choose between "the politics of recognition" and the "politics of redistribution," _Justice Interruptus_ integrates the best aspects of both. ********************************************************* ** What does it mean to think critically about politics at a time when inequality is increasing worldwide, when struggles for the recognition of difference are eclipsing struggles for social equality, and when we lack any credible vision of an alternative to the present order? Philosopher Nancy Fraser claims that the key is to overcome the (...) false oppositions of "postsocialist" commonsense. Refuting the view that we must choose between "the politics of recognition" and the "politics of redistribution," Fraser argues for an integrative approach that encompasses the best aspects of both. (shrink)
Until recently, struggles for justice proceeded against the background of a taken-for-granted frame: the bounded territorial state. With that "Westphalian" picture of political space assumed by default, the scope of justice was rarely subject to open dispute. Today, however, human-rights activists and international feminists join critics of structural adjustment and the World Trade Organization in challenging the view that justice can only be a domestic relation among fellow citizens. Targeting injustices that cut across borders, they are making the scale of (...) justice an object of explicit struggle. Inspired by these efforts, Nancy Fraser asks: What is the proper frame for theorizing justice? Faced with a plurality of competing scales, how do we know which one is truly just? In exploring these questions, Fraser revises her widely discussed theory of redistribution and recognition. She introduces a third, "political" dimension of justicerepresentationand elaborates a new, reflexive type of critical theory that foregrounds injustices of "misframing." Engaging with thinkers such as Jürgen Habermas, John Rawls, Michel Foucault, and Hannah Arendt, she envisions a "postwestphalian" mapping of political space that accommodates transnational solidarity, transborder publicity, and democratic frame-setting, as well as emancipatory projects that cross borders. The result is a sustained reflection on who should count with respect to what in a globalizing world. (shrink)
Best known for having declared the death of God, Nietzsche was a thinker thoroughly absorbed in the Christian tradition in which he was born and raised. Yet while the atheist Nietzsche is well known, the pious Nietzsche is seldom recognised and rarely understood. Redeeming Nietzsche examines the residual theologian in the most vociferous of atheists. Fraser demonstrates that although Nietzsche rejected God, he remained obsessed with the question of human salvation. Examining his accounts of art, truth, morality and eternity, (...) Nietzsche's thought is revealed to be a series of experiments in redemption. (shrink)
Abstract Drawing on the features of “practical philosophy” described by Toulmin ( 1990 ), a “practical” ethic for animals would be rooted in knowledge of how people affect animals, and would provide guidance on the diverse ethical concerns that arise. Human activities affect animals in four broad ways: (1) keeping animals, for example, on farms and as companions, (2) causing intentional harm to animals, for example through slaughter and hunting, (3) causing direct but unintended harm to animals, for example by (...) cropping practices and vehicle collisions, and (4) harming animals indirectly by disturbing life-sustaining processes and balances of nature, for example by habitat destruction and climate change. The four types of activities raise different ethical concerns including suffering, injury, deprivation, and death (of individuals), decline of populations, disruption of ecological systems containing animals, and extinction of species. They also vary in features relevant to moral evaluation and decision-making; these include the number of animals affected, the duration of the effects, the likelihood of irreversible effects, and the degree to which the effects can be controlled. In some cases human actions can also provide benefits to animals such as shelter and health care. Four mid-level principles are proposed to make a plausible fit to the features of the four types of human activities and to address the major ethical concerns that arise. The principles are: (1) to provide good lives for the animals in our care, (2) to treat suffering with compassion, (3) to be mindful of unseen harm, and (4) to protect the life-sustaining processes and balances of nature. This “practical” approach arguably makes a better fit to the complex, real-life problems of animal ethics than the single foundational principles that have dominated much recent animal ethics philosophy. Content Type Journal Article Category Articles Pages 1-26 DOI 10.1007/s10806-011-9353-z Authors David Fraser, Animal Welfare Program, University of British Columbia, 2357 Main Mall, Vancouver, V6T 1Z4 Canada Journal Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics Online ISSN 1573-322X Print ISSN 1187-7863. (shrink)
"Only a wayfarer born under unruly stars would attempt to put into practice in our epoch of proliferating knowledge the Heraclitean dictum that `men who love wisdom must be inquirers into very many things indeed.'" Thus begins this remarkable interdisciplinary study of time by a master of the subject. And while developing a theory of "time as conflict," J. T. Fraser does offer "many things indeed"--an enormous range of ideas about matter, life, death, evolution, and value.
The recent struggle over the confirmation of Clarence Thomas and the credibility of Anita Hill raises in a dramatic and pointed way many of the issues at stake in theorizing the public sphere in contemporary society. At one level, the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Hill’s claim that Thomas sexually harassed her constituted an exercise in democratic publicity as it has been understood in the classical liberal theory of the public sphere. The hearings opened to public scrutiny a function of (...) government, namely, the nomination and confirmation of a Supreme Court justice. They thus subjected a decision of state officials to the force of public opinion. Through the hearings, in fact, public opinion was constituted and brought to bear directly on the decision itself, affecting the process by which the decision was made as well as its substantive outcome. As a result, state officials were held accountable to the public by means of a discursive process of opinion and will formation.Yet that classical liberal view of the public sphere does not tell the whole story of these events.1 If were examine the Thomas confirmation struggle more closely, we see that the very meaning and boundaries of the concept of publicity was at stake. The way the struggle unfolded, moreover, depended at every point on who had the power to successfully and authoritatively define where the line between the public and the private would be drawn. It depended as well on who had the power to police and defend that boundary. 1. See Jürgen Habermas, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society, trans. Thomas Burger. Nancy Fraser is associate professor of philosophy and faculty fellow of the Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research at Northwestern University, where she also teaches in the women’s studies program. She is the author of Unruly Practices: Power, Discourse, and Gender in Contemporary Social Theory. She is currently working on Keywords of the Welfare State, a jointly authored book with Linda Gordon. (shrink)
First published by Texte zur Kunst and as part of the Whitney Biennial, we present Fraser's essays together express a something like claustrophobia. As the artworldmarket has become dominated by the speculative economic activities that fueled the current extreme income distribution inequalities globally, can a critique exist that is not already paying into these exploitative practices?
This essay, translated here in Italian and preceded by the Author's inedited preface, reconstructs the trajectory of second wave feminism since the 60s, exploring its ambivalences. Shifting from an analysis focused on economic redistribution to one founded on recognition of differences, feminism has sacrificed the critique of neoliberalism on the altar of women's emancipation. In order to break the tie with neoliberalism, Fraser proposes a new conception of social justice that links the principle of non-domination with those of social (...) protection and solidarity. (shrink)
I. The present paper was read as one of ‘Three Notes of Doubt and One of Despair’ at the Oxford Philological Society in June 1948. Generally speaking, there is nothing to be said in favour of publishing an article on a text one is admittedly unable to under-stand. But in this case it has seemed advisable to start a discussion. I am therefore grateful to my friend P. Fraser for having consented to communicate his thoughts on the matter in (...) an appendix to my note. We both hope that other scholars will be able to provide the satisfactory solution that has escaped us. Meanwhile we thank P. Maas, C. H. Roberts, and H. M. Last for their great help. (shrink)
This study is an important contribution to the intellectual history of Victorian England which examines the religio-aesthetic theories of some central writers of the time. Dr Fraser begins with a discussion of the aesthetic dimensions of Tractarian theology and then proceeds to the orthodox certainties of Hopkins' theory of inscape, Ruskin's and Arnold's moralistic criticism of literature and the visual arts, and Pater's and Wilde's faith in a religion of art. The author identifies significant cultural and historical conditions which (...) determined the interdependence of aesthetic and religious sensibility in the period. She argues that certain tensions in the thought of Wordsworth and Coleridge - tensions between poetry and religion, rebellion and reaction, individualism and authority - continued to manifest themselves throughout the Victorian age, and as society became increasingly democratic, religion in turn became increasingly personal and secular. (shrink)
Il saggio propone una nuova analisi della crisi capitalistica che si ricollega alla teoria dell’economista e teorico sociale Karl Polanyi, innovando la tesi di quest’ultimo del doppio movimento di mercatizzazione e protezioni sociali, fonte di lotte e conflitti, con un terzo asse: l’emancipazione e le sue proprie lotte. Le lotte per l’auto-determinazione e l’indipendenza sono qui interpretate attraverso la chiave di lettura dell’emancipazione, teorizzata come «il terzo mancante». Perciò, al doppio movimento di Polanyi subentra il «triplo movimento», che forma il (...) nucleo della riflessione teoretica e pone sotto una nuova luce la crisi capitalistica delle società attuali. Ognuno dei tre termini è ambivalente e nessuno dei tre può essere preso in considerazione senza gli altri due.This paper suggests us a new analysis of the crisis of capitalism. Fraser’s analysis builds upon the theory of the economist and social theorist Karl Polanyi, argomenting Polanyi’s thesis of a double movement of marketization and social protections, reason of struggles and conflicts, with a third axis: emancipation and its struggles. By emancipation Fraser understands the struggle for self-determination and independence, which she theorizes as «the missing third». Thus, instead of Polanyi’s double movement, she speaks of a «triple movement». This threefold movement forms the core of her theoretical reflections which cast the current crisis of capitalist societies in a new light. In fact, each term of the triple movement as ambivalent and none of the three can be adequately grasped in isolation from the others. (shrink)
Correspondence: Chris Fraser (J) (Assistant Professor) Department of Philosophy Rm. 430, Fung King Hey Bldg. Chinese University of Hong Kong Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong Telephone: 852-9782-0560 Fax: 852-2603-5323 E-mail: email@example.com..
Most philosophical discussion of the particle concept that is afforded by quantum field theory has focused on free systems. This paper is devoted to a systematic investigation of whether the particle concept for free systems can be extended to interacting systems. The possible methods of accomplishing this are considered and all are found unsatisfactory. Therefore, an interacting system cannot be interpreted in terms of particles. As a consequence, quantum field theory does not support the inclusion of particles in our ontology. (...) In contrast to much of the recent discussion on the particle concept derived from quantum field theory, this argument does not rely on the assumption that a particulate entity be localizable. (shrink)
It has long been known that people’s causal judgments can have an impact on their moral judgments. To take a simple example, if people conclude that a behavior caused the death of ten innocent children, they will therefore be inclined to regard the behavior itself as morally wrong. So far, none of this should come as any surprise. But recent experimental work points to the existence of a second, and more surprising, aspect of the relationship between causal judgment and moral (...) judgment. It appears that the relationship can sometimes go in the opposite direction. That is, it appears that our moral judgments can sometimes impact our causal judgments. (Hence, we might first determine that a behavior is morally wrong and then, on that basis, arrive at the conclusion that it was the cause of various outcomes.). (shrink)
Further arguments are offered in defence of the position that the variant of quantum field theory (QFT) that should be subject to interpretation and foundational analysis is axiomatic quantum field theory. I argue that the successful application of renormalization group (RG) methods within alternative formulations of QFT illuminates the empirical content of QFT, but not the theoretical content. RG methods corroborate the point of view that QFT is a case of the underdetermination of theory by empirical evidence. I also urge (...) caution in extrapolating interpretive conclusions about QFT from the application of RG methods in other contexts (e.g., condensed matter physics). This paper replies to criticisms advanced by David Wallace, but aims to be self-contained. (shrink)
This unique volume presents a debate between four of the top feminist theorists in the US today, discussing the key questions facing contemporary feminist theory, responding to each other, and distinguishing their views from others.
Quantum field theory (QFT) presents a genuine example of the underdetermination of theory by empirical evidence. There are variants of QFT—for example, the standard textbook formulation and the rigorous axiomatic formulation—that are empirically indistinguishable yet support different interpretations. This case is of particular interest to philosophers of physics because, before the philosophical work of interpreting QFT can proceed, the question of which variant should be subject to interpretation must be settled. New arguments are offered for basing the interpretation of QFT (...) on a rigorous axiomatic variant of the theory. The pivotal considerations are the roles that consistency and idealization play in this case. *Received June 2009; revised August 2009. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, Canada; e‐mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
Recent debate in metaethics over evolutionary debunking arguments against morality has shown a tendency to abstract away from relevant empirical detail. Here, I engage the debate about Darwinian debunking of morality with relevant empirical issues. I present four conditions that must be met in order for it to be reasonable to expect an evolved cognitive faculty to be reliable: the environment, information, error, and tracking conditions. I then argue that these conditions are not met in the case of our evolved (...) faculty for moral judgement. (shrink)
Although the philosophical literature on the foundations of quantum field theory recognizes the importance of Haag’s theorem, it does not provide a clear discussion of the meaning of this theorem. The goal of this paper is to make up for this deficit. In particular, it aims to set out the implications of Haag’s theorem for scattering theory, the interaction picture, the use of non-Fock representations in describing interacting fields, and the choice among the plethora of the unitarily inequivalent representations of (...) the canonical commutation relations for free and interacting fields. (shrink)
Edited by Hans-Christoph Schmidt am Busch & Christopher Zurn. This volume collects original, cutting-edge essays on the philosophy of recognition by international scholars eminent in the field. By considering the topic of recognition as addressed by both classical and contemporary authors, the volume explores the connections between historical and contemporary recognition research and makes substantive contributions to the further development of contemporary theories of recognition.
In the course of the last 30 years, feminist theories of gender have shifted from quasi-Marxist, labor-centered conceptions to putatively ‘post-Marxist’ culture-and identity-based conceptions. Reflecting a broader political move from redistribution to recognition, this shift has been double edged. On the one hand, it has broadened feminist politics to encompass legitimate issues of representation, identity and difference. Yet, in the context of an ascendant neoliberalism, feminist struggles for recognition may be serving less to enrich struggles for redistribution than to displace (...) the latter. Thus, instead of arriving at a broader, richer paradigm that could encompass both redistribution and recognition, feminists appear to have traded one truncated paradigm for another – a truncated economism for a truncated culturalism. This article aims to resist that trend. I propose an anaysis of gender that is broad enough to house the full range of feminist concerns, those central to the old socialist-feminism as well as those rooted in the cultural turn. I also propose a correspondingly broad conception of justice, capable of encompassing both distribution and recognition, and a non-identitarian account of recognition, capable of synergizing with redistribution. I conclude by examining some practical problems that arise when we try to envision institutional reforms that could redress gender maldistribution and gender misrecognition simultaneously. (shrink)
This collection reports on the latest research on an increasingly pivotal issue for evolutionary biology: cooperation. The chapters are written from a variety of disciplinary perspectives and utilize research tools that range from empirical survey to conceptual modeling, reflecting the rich diversity of work in the field. They explore a wide taxonomic range, concentrating on bacteria, social insects, and, especially, humans. -/- Part I (“Agents and Environments”) investigates the connections of social cooperation in social organizations to the conditions that make (...) cooperation profitable and stable, focusing on the interactions of agent, population, and environment. Part II (“Agents and Mechanisms”) focuses on how proximate mechanisms emerge and operate in the evolutionary process and how they shape evolutionary trajectories. Throughout the book, certain themes emerge that demonstrate the ubiquity of questions regarding cooperation in evolutionary biology: the generation and division of the profits of cooperation; transitions in individuality; levels of selection, from gene to organism; and the “human cooperation explosion” that makes our own social behavior particularly puzzling from an evolutionary perspective. (shrink)
This book demonstrates how and why vitalism—the idea that life cannot be explained by the principles of mechanism—matters now. Vitalism resists closure and reductionism in the life sciences while simultaneously addressing the object of life itself. The aim of this collection is to consider the questions that vitalism makes it possible to ask: questions about the role and status of life across the sciences, social sciences, and humanities and questions about contingency, indeterminacy, relationality and change. All have special importance now, (...) as the concepts of complexity, artificial life and artificial intelligence, information theory, and cybernetics become increasingly significant in more and more fields of activity. (shrink)
A key question for research on the evolutionary origins of morality concerns just what the target of an evolutionary explanation of morality should be. Some researchers focus on behaviors, others on systems of norms, yet others on moral emotions. Richard Joyce (2006) offers an evolutionary explanation for the trait of making moral judgments. Here, I defend Joyce’s account of moral judgment against two objections from Stephen Stich (2008). Stich’s first objection concerns the supposed universality of moral judgments as Joyce conceives (...) of them. I respond by undermining the empirical evidence upon which this objection is based. Stich’s second objection concerns the extent of the moral domain, which he takes to include far more than the considerations of harm and fairness central to Joyce’s account. In response, I outline several strategies for reconciling Stich’s observations with Joyce’s account. (shrink)
The paper develops a eudaimonistic reading of the Zhuāngzǐ 莊子 on which the characteristic feature of a well-lived life is the exercise of dé 德 in a general mode of activity labeled yóu 遊 . I argue that the Zhuāngzǐ presents a second-order conception of agents’ flourishing in which the life of dé is not devoted to predetermined substantive ends or activities with a specific substantive content. Rather, it is marked by a distinctive manner of activity and certain characteristic attitudes. (...) Zhuangist eudaimonism differs from virtue ethics, I suggest, since dé is not moral virtue nor is it normatively basic. The paper discusses textual evidence that the Zhuāngzǐ presents eudaimonistic ideals, develops the Zhuangist conception of “wandering” in detail, and explores connections between wandering and the Zhuangist interest in skill. It surveys the justification for Zhuangist eudaimonism and sketches how the wandering ideal affects the substantive content of a good life. (shrink)
We are moral apes, a difference between humans and our relatives that has received significant recent attention in the evolutionary literature. Evolutionary accounts of morality have often been recruited in support of error theory: moral language is truth-apt, but substantive moral claims are never true. In this article, we: locate evolutionary error theory within the broader framework of the relationship between folk conceptions of a domain and our best scientific conception of that same domain; within that broader framework, argue that (...) error theory and vindication are two ends of a continuum, and that in the light of our best science, many folk conceptual structures are neither hopelessly wrong nor fully vindicated; and argue that while there is no full vindication of morality, no seamless reduction of normative facts to natural facts, nevertheless one important strand in the evolutionary history of moral thinking does support reductive naturalism—moral facts are facts about cooperation, and the conditions and practices that support or undermine it. In making our case for, we first respond to the important error theoretic argument that the appeal to moral facts is explanatorily redundant, and second, we make a positive case that true moral beliefs are a ‘fuel for success’, a map by which we steer, flexibly, in a variety of social interactions. The vindication, we stress, is at most partial: moral cognition is a complex mosaic, with a complex genealogy, and selection for truth-tracking is only one thread in that genealogy. (shrink)
In the course of the last thirty years, feminist theories of gender have shifted from quasi-Marxist, labor-centered conceptions to putatively “post-Marxist”culture- and identity-based conceptions. Reflecting a broader political move from redistribution to recognition, this shift has been double-edged. On the one hand, it has broadened feminist politics to encompass legitimate issues of representation, identity, and difference. Yet, in the context of an ascendant neoliberalism, feminist struggles for recognition may be serving to less to enrich struggles for redistribution than to displace (...) the latter. I aim to resist that trend. In this essay, I propose an analysis of gender that is broad enough to house the full range of feminist concerns, those central to the old socialist-feminism as well as those rooted in the cultural turn. I also propose a correspondingly broad conception of justice, capable of encompassing both distribution and recognition, and a non-identitarian account of recognition, capable of synergizing with redistribution. I conclude by examining some practical problems that arise when we try to envision institutional reforms that could redress gender maldistribution and gender misrecognition simultaneously. (shrink)
Research ethics committees—animal ethics committees for animal-based research and institutional research boards for human subjects—have a key role in research governance, but there has been little study of the factors influencing their effectiveness. The objectives of this study were to examine how the effectiveness of a research ethics committee is influenced by committee composition and dynamics, recruitment of members, workload, participation level and member turnover. As a model, 28 members of AECs at four universities in western Canada were interviewed. Committees (...) were selected to represent variation in the number and type of protocols reviewed, and participants were selected to include different types of committee members. We found that a bias towards institutional or scientific interests may result from a preponderance of institutional and scientist members, an intimidating atmosphere for community members and other minority members, recruitment of community members who are affiliated with the institution and members joining for reasons other than to fulfil the committee mandate. Thoroughness of protocol review may be influenced by heavy workloads, type of review process and lack of full committee participation. These results, together with results from the literature on research ethics committees, suggested potential ways to improve the effectiveness of research ethics committees. (shrink)
Despite their substantial appeal, closure principles have fallen on hard times. Both anti-luck conditions on knowledge and the defeasibility of knowledge look to be in tension with natural ways of articulating single-premise closure principles. The project of this paper is to show that plausible theses in the epistemology of testimony face problems structurally identical to those faced by closure principles. First I show how Lasonen-Aarnio’s claim that there is a tension between single premise closure and anti-luck constraints on knowledge can (...) be extended to make trouble for transmission theses. Second, I show how Schechter’s claim that there is a tension between single premise closure and the thought that knowledge is defeasible can be extended to make trouble for transmission theses. I end the paper by sketching the consequences of this trouble for the dialectic in the epistemology of testimony. (shrink)
Drawing primarily on the Mòzǐ and Xúnzǐ, the article proposes an account of how knowledge and error are understood in classical Chinese epistemology and applies it to explain the absence of a skeptical argument from illusion in early Chinese thought. Arguments from illusion are associated with a representational conception of mind and knowledge, which allows the possibility of a comprehensive or persistent gap between appearance and reality. By contrast, early Chinese thinkers understand mind and knowledge primarily in terms of competence (...) or ability, not representation. Cognitive error amounts to a form of incompetence. Error is not explained as a failure to accurately represent the mind-independent reality due to misleading or illusory appearances. Instead, it can be explained metaphorically by appeal to part-whole relations: cognitive error typically occurs when agents incompetently respond to only part of their situation, rather than the whole. (shrink)
Among the many striking features of the philosophy of the Zhu?ngz? is that it advocates a life unperturbed by emotions, including even pleasurable, positive emotions such as joy or delight. Many of us see emotions as an ineluctable part of life, and some would argue they are a crucial component of a well-developed moral sensitivity and a good life. The Zhuangist approach to emotion challenges such commonsense views so radically that it amounts to a test case for the fundamental plausibility (...) of the Daoist ethical orientation: If the Zhuangist stance on emotion is untenable, then other aspects of Daoist ethics may founder as well. In this essay, I explore what I call a Zhuangist ?Virtuoso View? of emotion and its connections with human agency, attempting to show that at least one version of a Zhuangist approach to emotion passes the ?basic plausibility? test. I begin by describing the Virtuoso View and sketching its theoretical foundation, which involves claims about human agency, the self, psychophysical hygiene, the good life, epistemology, and metaphysics. Next, I defend the Virtuoso View against three objections, namely that it abandons intentionality, that it interferes with a good life, and that it yields a schizophrenic conception of agency. I argue for three major theses. First, the Virtuoso View is easily intelligible and largely defensible. Second, it reflects a crucial insight into a fundamental dichotomy at the core of human agency: the unavoidable conflict within a self-aware human agent between an internal, engaged perspective and an external, detached one. Third, I suggest that certain problems or conflicts arising from the Virtuoso View actually reflect inherent features of the human predicament and thus are not mere conceptual defects. Hence even if we do not find the Virtuoso View wholly convincing, we can nevertheless gain much insight from it. (shrink)
: This essay critiques Chad Hansen’s "mass noun hypothesis," arguing that though most Classical Chinese nouns do function as mass nouns, this fact does not support the claim that pre-Qin thinkers treat the extensions of common nouns as mereological wholes, nor does it explain why they adopt nominalist semantic theories. The essay shows that early texts explain the use of common nouns by appeal to similarity relations, not mereological relations. However, it further argues that some early texts do characterize the (...) relation between individuals and collections as a mereological relation. (shrink)