This careful and engaging introduction to Aristotle equips readers of ancient philosophy and classics with an intellectual map that will guide their further exploration within the terrains of Aristotelian philosophy and logic. The book does not seek to provide a verdict or to persuade the reader of the usefulness of Aristotle's ideas. Instead it offers a comprehensive introduction to key philosophical areas while situating the reader within the ongoing intellectual debates on Aristotle's significance and relevance. Crowley's book allows an (...) overview of Aristotle's contributions and includes discussions on the Organon, the epitome of his logical treatises, his works on biology, nature and causation, metaphysics, citizenship, ethics and eudaimonia. The book is a valuable tool for readers interested in becoming acquainted with the work of Aristotle but most importantly for those who are keen to understand his many interpretations. (shrink)
Oxford Studies in Language Contact Series editors: Professor Suzanne Romaine, Merton College, Oxford and Dr Peter Mülhäusler, Linacre College, Oxford This series aims to make available a collection of research monographs which present case studies of language contact around the world. The series will consider factors which give rise to language contact and the consequences of such contact in a broad inter-disciplinary context. Given the prevalence of language contact in communities throughout the world, there are as yet insufficient studies to (...) permit typological generalization about the subject: this series aims to fill that gap. Bislama is the variety of Melanesian Pidgin spoken in Vanuatu. In this book Terry Crowley describes its history and development from the 1940s to the present. In the first chapters the labour history of Vanuatu is reviewed in detail in order to establish what were the contacts between speakers of various languages with one another over the period. The written record is thoroughly examined for evidence about how people communicated in the early contact period, and how the contact language developed over the time. In the later chapters the author gives a detailed treatment of selected grammatical constructions and their evolution, including syntactic developments that are currently in progress. In this discussion he addresses the controversial issue of the source of grammatical constructions in Bislama, considering in particular the possible role of substratum patterns. He concludes that while there is good evidence for substratum influence in the grammer of Bislama, the mere existence of stuctural parallels between Bislama and the substrate is not itself sufficient evidence. There are a range of other explanations that may also be drawn upon to account for these similarities. (shrink)
Standard philosophical methodology which proceeds by appeal to intuitions accessible "from the armchair" has come under criticism on the basis of empirical work indicating unanticipated variability of such intuitions. Loose constitutivity---the idea that intuitions are partly, but not strictly, constitutive of the concepts that appear in them---offers an interesting line of response to this empirical challenge. On a loose constitutivist view, it is unlikely that our intuitions are incorrect across the board, since they partly fix the facts in question. But (...) we argue that this ratification of intuitions is at best rough and generic, and can only do the required methodological work if it operates in conjunction with some sort of further criteria of theory selection. We consider two that we find in the literature: naturalness (Brian Weatherson, borrowing from Lewis) and charity (Henry Jackman, borrowing from Davidson). At the end of the day, neither provides the armchair philosopher complete shelter from extra-armchair inquiry. (shrink)
Aristotle's use of the phrase τὰ καλούμενα στοιχεȋα is usually taken as evidence that he does not really think that the things to which this phrase refers, namely, fire, air, water, and earth, are genuine elements. In this paper I question the linguistic and textual grounds for taking the phrase τὰ καλούμενα στοιχεȋα in this way. I offer a detailed examination of the significance of the phrase, and in particular I compare Aristotle's general use of the Greek participle καλούμενος (-η, (...) -ον) in other contexts. I conclude that his use of the phrase τὰ καλούμενα στοιχεȋα does not carry ironical or sceptical connotations, and that it ought to be understood as a neutral report of a contemporary opinion that the elements of bodies are fire, air, water, and earth. I leave aside the question as to whether or not Aristotle himself endorses this opinion. (shrink)
Carruthers argues that an integrated faculty of metarepresentation evolved for mindreading and was later exapted for metacognition. A more consistent application of his approach would regard metarepresentation in mindreading with the same skeptical rigor, concluding that the “faculty” may have been entirely exapted. Given this result, the usefulness of Carruthers’ line-drawing exercise is called into question.
Advertising spokespersons have been defending their industry against tobacco and alcohol advertising bans by claiming the bans will do no good. In mature categories, they say advertising does not attract new users, but merely causes people to switch brands. This article contends that such an argument is based on legal pragmatism and will eventually fail because the public does not believe it. It suggests an ethical defense based on the public's right to know.
A computer can come to understand natural language the same way Helen Keller did: by using “syntactic semantics”—a theory of how syntax can suffice for semantics, i.e., how semantics for natural language can be provided by means of computational symbol manipulation. This essay considers real-life approximations of Chinese Rooms, focusing on Helen Keller’s experiences growing up deaf and blind, locked in a sort of Chinese Room yet learning how to communicate with the outside world. Using the SNePS computational (...) knowledge-representation system, the essay analyzes Keller’s belief that learning that “everything has a name” was the key to her success, enabling her to “partition” her mental concepts into mental representations of: words, objects, and the naming relations between them. It next looks at Herbert Terrace’s theory of naming, which is akin to Keller’s, and which only humans are supposed to be capable of. The essay suggests that computers at least, and perhaps non-human primates, are also capable of this kind of naming. (shrink)
Helen Frowe has recently offered what she calls a “practical” account of self-defense. Her account is supposed to be practical by being subjectivist about permissibility and objectivist about liability. I shall argue here that Frowe first makes up a problem that does not exist and then fails to solve it. To wit, her claim that objectivist accounts of permissibility cannot be action-guiding is wrong; and her own account of permissibility actually retains an objectivist (in the relevant sense) element. In (...) addition, her attempt to restrict subjectivism primarily to “urgent” situations like self-defense contradicts her own point of departure and is either incoherent or futile. Finally, the only actual whole-heartedly objectivist account she criticizes is an easy target; while those objectivist accounts one finds in certain Western European jurisdictions are immune to her criticisms. Those accounts are also clearly superior to hers in terms of action-guidingness. (shrink)
William Rapaport, in “How Helen Keller used syntactic semantics to escape from a Chinese Room,” (Rapaport 2006), argues that Helen Keller was in a sort of Chinese Room, and that her subsequent development of natural language fluency illustrates the flaws in Searle’s famous Chinese Room Argument and provides a method for developing computers that have genuine semantics (and intentionality). I contend that his argument fails. In setting the problem, Rapaport uses his own preferred definitions of semantics and syntax, (...) but he does not translate Searle’s Chinese Room argument into that idiom before attacking it. Once the Chinese Room is translated into Rapaport’s idiom (in a manner that preserves the distinction between meaningful representations and uninterpreted symbols), I demonstrate how Rapaport’s argument fails to defeat the CRA. This failure brings a crucial element of the Chinese Room Argument to the fore: the person in the Chinese Room is prevented from connecting the Chinese symbols to his/her own meaningful experiences and memories. This issue must be addressed before any victory over the CRA is announced. (shrink)
One of the most contentious question in today’s discussions on the educational policies concerns the role and values of the humanities in contemporary society and education. Many see the humanities as empty, unnecessary, inefficient, phony and worthless. This paper offers a rundown of arguments adduced to support this view, followed by an overview of Helen Small’s The Value of the Humanities, which offers an exceptionally critical and insightful analysis into the current debate over the value of the humanities. The (...) paper ends by emphasizing further the need to recognize the contribution that the humanities make to the production of knowledge and enhancement of the quality of life, as well as to the much needed sense of purpose and meaning. (shrink)
Helen Dean King's scientific work focused on inbreeding using experimental data collected from standardized laboratory rats to elucidate problems in human heredity. The meticulous care with which she carried on her inbreeding experiments assured that her results were dependable and her theoretical explanations credible. By using her nearly homozygous rats as desired commodities, she also was granted access to venues and people otherwise unavailable to her as a woman. King's scientific career was made possible through her life experiences. She (...) earned a doctorate from Bryn Mawr College under Thomas Hunt Morgan and spent a productive career at the Wistar Institute of Anatomy and Biology in Philadelphia where she had access to the experimental subjects which made her career possible. In this paper I examine King's work on inbreeding, her participation in the debates over eugenics, her position at the Wistar Institute, her status as a woman working with mostly male scientists, and her involvement with popular science. (shrink)
James Tabery Helen Longino’s Studying Human Behavior is an overdue effort at a nonpartisan evaluation of the many scientific disciplines that study the nature and nurture of human behavior, arguing for the acceptance of the strengths and weaknesses of all approaches. After years of conflict, Longino makes the pluralist case for peaceful coexistence. Her analysis of the approaches raises the following question: how are we to understand the pluralistic relationship among the peacefully coexisting approaches? Longino is ironically rather unpluralistic (...) about her pluralism, forcing a choice between integrative pluralism and her preferred ineliminative pluralism. I hope to show that the analysis of approaches she offers actually accommodates a pluralism that is both integrative and ineliminative.Approaches to studying human behaviorPhilosophy of biology took shape as a discipline in the 1970s. This disciplinary formation over. (shrink)
In her analysis of the politics of biotechnology, Sheila Jasanoff argued that modern democracy cannot be understood without an analysis of the ways knowledge is created and used in society. She suggested calling these ways to “know things in common” civic epistemologies. Jasanoff thus approached knowledge as fundamentally social. The focus on the social nature of knowledge allows drawing parallels with some developments in philosophy of science. In the first part of the paper, I juxtapose Jasanoff’s account with the philosopher (...)Helen Longino’s approach. Longino argued that objectivity of scientific knowledge is made possible by the social nature of knowledge production. In the process of community-wide discussion, claims that are not intersubjectively acceptable are rejected and communally acceptable knowledge emerges. Longino called this knowledge-creating critical dialogue transformative. I suggest that Longino’s account can be seen as providing epistemological support for the civic epistemologies Jasanoff described. They are capable of producing knowledge in the normative philosophical sense of the word to the degree that they are able to support this transformative critical dialogue. In the second part of the paper, I explore in the light of Longino’s criteria for effective knowledge-productive dialogue one of the controversies in biotechnology policy that Jasanoff analysed. I suggest that Longino’s criteria allow identifying some fundamental obstacles for initiating and maintaining this kind of responsive critical dialogue and that the controversy can be seen as caused by inability to overcome these obstacles. In such a case, the controversy signals an epistemic failure as well as a failure of democratic policy. (shrink)
Philip Kitcher argued that the freedom to pursue one's version of the good life is the main aim of Mill's argument for freedom of expression. According to Kitcher, in certain scientific fields, political and epistemological asymmetries bias research toward conclusions that threaten this most important freedom of underprivileged groups. Accordingly, Kitcher claimed that there are Millian grounds for limiting freedom of inquiry in these fields to protect the freedom of the underprivileged. -/- I explore Kitcher's argument in light of the (...) interpretation Helen Longino gave to Mill's argument. She argued that free critical dialogue in the community allows bias to be overcome, through intersubjective criticism of hypotheses and the background assumptions that frame them. I suggest that Longino's approach allows for the identification of the fundamental problems of the research programs Kitcher targeted, and for the rejection of their claims to knowledge. Thus it is possible to address Kitcher's problem without limiting freedom of speech. (shrink)
Ford’s Helen Keller Was Never in a Chinese Room claims that my argument in How Helen Keller Used Syntactic Semantics to Escape from a Chinese Room fails because Searle and I use the terms ‘syntax’ and ‘semantics’ differently, hence are at cross purposes. Ford has misunderstood me; this reply clarifies my theory.
According to Helen Longino, objectivity is necessarily social as it depends on critical interactions in com- munity. Justin Biddle argues that Longino’s account presupposes individuals that are completely open to any criticism; as such individuals are in principle able to criticise their beliefs on their own, Longino’s account is not really social. In the first part of my paper I argue that even for completely open individuals, criticism for maintaining objectivity is only possible in community. In the second part (...) I question Biddle’s interpretation of Longino’s conception of the individual. I conclude that objectivity as Longino describes it is necessarily social. (shrink)
Helen's self-disparagement is an anomaly in epic diction, and this is especially true of those instances where she refers to herself as "dog" and "dog-face." This essay attempts to show that Helen's dog-language, in that it remains in conflict with other features of her characterization, has some generic significance for epic, helping to establish the superiority of epic performance over competing performance types which treated her differently. The metaphoric use of χύων and its derivatives has not been well (...) understood: the scholiast's gloss "shameless" is no more than a functional equivalent, and interpretations linking it primarily with reckless courage or with sexual misconduct are not well founded. An analysis of contexts suggests that "dog" as an insult has a fundamental association with physical greed and even cannibalism. The implied notion of avarice, however, may also be extended into other behavioral spheres, including those of fighting and sexuality. A character may also be called "dog" for reviling or slandering another unjustly. These strongly negative implications are out of keeping with the character given to Helen in epic. For where tragedy and lyric generally represent Helen as blameworthy, Homeric epic tends to absolve her of blame and to make her personally as well as physically attractive. The unexpected application of dog-terms to her may therefore be read as an allusion to other versions of the Troy legend which were more hostile to Helen. Negative portrayals of Helen are likely to have figured in the ancient kitharodic narrative which was a precursor of both tragedy and lyric; these are perhaps the unfriendly "songs" mentioned by Helen at Il. 6.357. By referring to such defamatory narratives through the dog-insult and through other instances of Helen's self-blame, the epic performer marks his own more favorable treatment as a generic preference. (shrink)
ABSTRACT In A Metaphysics for Freedom and related papers, Helen Steward advances a new argument for incompatibilism. Though she concedes that the luck objection is persuasive with regard to existing versions of libertarianism, she claims that agency itself is incompatible with determinism: we are only agents at all if we are able to settle matters concerning our movements, where settling something requires that prior to our settling it lacked sufficient conditions. She argues that genuine agents settle very fine-grained aspects (...) of their movements: when and how they move, even when and how their neurons fire. In this paper, I advance two linked arguments against agency incompatibilism. I argue, first, that we do not exercise direct control over the fine-grained aspects of our movements. Rather, we control these movements indirectly, by intentionally engaging in broadly individuated action types. Second, I argue that these aspects of our movements are lucky for us and, since this is true, they cannot play the role of grounding our agency. (shrink)
This is the introduction and the translation of Gorgias' "Helen". The speech is considered to be one of the most interesting pieces of early Greek rhetoric not only because of its rhetorical, but also because of its philosophical value. There is no doubt that it sets out the outlines of the sophistic conception of logos and (along with another Gorgias' speech Palamedes) represents the starting point for the Plato's critique of Gorgias' rhetoric in the dialogue "Gorgias'.
I defend my earlier argument for incompatibilism, against Helen Beebee’s reply. Beebee’s reply would allow one to have free will despite that nothing one does counts as an exercise of that freedom, and would grant one the ability to do A even when one’s doing A requires something to happen that one cannot bring about and that in fact will not happen.
Nature's experiments in isolation—the wild boy of Aveyron, Genie, their name is hardly legion—are by their nature illusive. Helen Keller, blind and deaf from her 18th month and isolated from language until well into her sixth year, presents a unique case in that every stage in her development was carefully recorded and she herself, graduate of Radcliffe College and author of 14 books, gave several careful and insightful accounts of her linguistic development and her cognitive and sensory situation. Perhaps (...) because she is masked, and enshrined, in William Gibson's mythic and false Miracle worker, cognitive scientists have yet to come to terms with this richly enlightening, albeit anecdotal, resource. (shrink)
Troades has often been thought to lack any coherent structure, and this has been variously attributed to its being the last play of the trilogy and to Euripides' overriding concern to impress the horrors of war upon his fellow Athenians. More recently, however, attention has been drawn to how the constant presence of Hecuba gives unity to the play and to how it is articulated by the striking entries of Cassandra, Andromache, and Helen. Cassandra and Andromache enter in mock (...) triumph, Cassandra waving torches in her ironical wedding song and Andromache on a waggon, while Helen is dragged out by force and her scene marked off by Menelaus' second prologue. All three women emerge from the tent, argue with Hecuba but fail to convince her, and depart for marriage in Greece. Andromache's ideal marriage to Hector contrasts with Cassandra's perverted ‘marriage’ to Agamemnon and with Helen's destructive marriage to Paris. The departure of the Trojan women for marriage in Greece balances Helen's earlier departure from Greece for marriage in Troy. (shrink)
Helen Macfarlane, revolutionary social critic, feminist and Hegelian philosopher was the first English translator of Karl Marx and Fredrich Engel's theCommunist Manifesto. Her original translation is included in this edition. Marx publicly admired her as a rare and original thinker and journalist. This book recreates her intellectual and political world at a key turning point in European history.
This note examines the British case of Broidy v. St Helen's andKnowsley Health Authority in which Margaret Broidy was unsuccessful in anegligence action against the defendant Health Authority following an emergency caesareanoperation in which a hysterectomy had been performed as `essential'. Of particularfeminist interest is the fact that Broidy's claim for, inter alia, the costs of asurrogacy arrangement to be carried out in California was refused on the basis that it wasnot reasonable – the chances of success of the (...) surrogacy arrangement being deemed tooremote. Set within the context of an increasingly prolific number ofworld-wide surrogacy stories, the Broidy decision is analysed as providing a recentillustration of some of the difficult implications of the reproductive option which surrogacyhas now become. (shrink)
This article is about the relationship between reading, trauma and responsive literary caregiving in Britain during the First World War. Its analysis of two little-known documents describing the history of the War Library, begun by Helen Mary Gaskell in 1914, exposes a gap in the scholarship of war-time reading; generates a new narrative of "how," "when," and "why" books went to war; and foregrounds gender in its analysis of the historiography. The Library of Congress's T. W. Koch discovered Gaskell's (...) ground-breaking work in 1917 and reported its successes to the American Library Association. The British Times also covered Gaskell's library, yet researchers working on reading during the war have routinely neglected her distinct model and method, skewing the research base on war-time reading and its association with trauma and caregiving. In the article's second half, a literary case study of a popular war novel demonstrates the extent of the "bitter cry for books." The success of Gaskell's intervention is examined alongside H. G. Wells's representation of textual healing. Reading is shown to offer sick, traumatized and recovering combatants emotional and psychological caregiving in ways that she could not always have predicted and that are not visible in the literary/historical record. (shrink)