For a biological anthropologist interested in the prehistory of religion, J. Wentzel van Huyssteen's book is welcome and resonant. Van Huyssteen's central thesis is that humans' capacity for spirituality emerges from a transformation of cognition and emotions that takes place in the symbolic realm, within Homo sapiens and apart from biology. To his thesis I bring to bear three areas of response: the abundant cognitive and emotional capacities of living apes and extinct hominids; the role of symbolic ritual in the (...) evolutionary history of Homo sapiens; and the closely intertwined nature of biology and culture in the workings of evolutionary change. (shrink)
J. H. van 't Hoff's 1874 Dutch pamphlet, in which he proposed the spatial arrangement of atoms in a molecule, is one of the most significant documents in the history of chemistry. This essay presents a new narrative of Van 't Hoff's early life and places the appearance of the pamphlet within the context of the 'second golden age' of Dutch science. We argue that the combination of the reformed educational system in The Netherlands, the emergence of graphical molecular modelling (...) within the theoretical and practical culture of chemistry during the 1860s and 1870s, as well as Van 't Hoff's own personal research trajectory, formed the background to his unprecedented attribution of spatial meaning to the traditional concept of atomic 'arrangement'. We also present a new English translation of the pamphlet, for we have found that the existing translation, published by G. M. Richardson in 1901, contains many errors, changes and omissions. The new version offers a more accurate rendition in English of Van 't Hoff's style and argument. (shrink)
J.H. van den Berg was a member of the Utrecht school of phenomenology that flourished in Holland during the 1950s and early 1960s. He was a psychiatrist who had a private practice and he taught at the University of Leiden. Along with other members of the Utrecht school, not all of whom were psychiatrists, he was among the first to apply the insights drawn from existential-phenomenological philosophy to psychology and psychiatry. As with the philosophers, he emphasized that subjectivity was engaged (...) with the world and its activities had to be described. He emphasized that insights into experience as lived, or the phenomenal level, was what was critical for psychologists to understand. (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)
In his three books J. Wentzel van Huyssteen develops a complex and helpful notion of rationality, avoiding the extremes of foundationalism and postmodern relativism and deconstruction. Drawing from several postmodern philosophers of science and evolutionary epistemologists who seek to devise a usable notion of rationality, he weaves together a view that allows for a genuine duet betweenscience and theology. In the process he challenges much contemporary nonfoundationalist theology as well as the philosophical naïveté of some cosmologists and sociobiologists.
L. Albertazzi, G. J. van Tonder, and D. Vishwanath (eds): Perception Beyond Inference: The Information Content of Visual Processes Content Type Journal Article Pages 53-55 DOI 10.1007/s11023-011-9253-z Authors Lorenzo Magnani, Department of Philosophy and Computational Philosophy Laboratory, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy Journal Minds and Machines Online ISSN 1572-8641 Print ISSN 0924-6495 Journal Volume Volume 22 Journal Issue Volume 22, Number 1.
The Dutch biologist C J. van der Klaauw (1893–1972) structuralized the epistemology of oecology using concepts which exceeded the limits of a strictly teleological interpretation of nature. This article relates to his theory of holistic oecology which van der Klaauw formulated departing from a critical confrontation with Kant's teleological view on nature. He substituted this extra-scientifically heuristic maxim by the holistic notion of network-like associations between organisms within a community. The analogous similarities between the organization of individual organisms and communities (...) drawn up by van der Klaauw, merely remained propaedeutics for a genuine holistic oecology, which would only employ epistemological principles specifically referring to the organization of supra-individual communities of organisms. This article discusses the process of structuralizing the theory of holistic oecology by van der Klaauw in his dialogue with Kantian philosophy. (shrink)
In my previous paper, "Howard J. Van Till's 'robust formational economy principle' as a Critique of Intelligent Design Theory," I argued that Howard Van Till's Robust Formational Economy Principle (RFEP) does not have a firm theological basis, and cannot serve to pre-empt a consideration of the empirical arguments for intelligent design in nature. In his response, Van Till has simply reiterated his position, without engaging my arguments in any detail. So it is fair to conclude that my original arguments against (...) his RFEP still stand. (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)
Summary In 1874, the Dutch chemist and Nobel prizewinner Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff (1852?1911) laid the foundations for stereochemistry with a publication in which he openly suggested that molecules were real physical entities with a three-dimensional structure. He visualized this new spatial concept with illustrations, but also with the help of small cardboard molecular models, which he made himself. Some of these models have survived the ravages of time and are among the oldest molecular models in the world still (...) in existence. What is more, they are the first material models of a three-dimensional molecular structure ever made. This article describes the surviving Van 't Hoff models, kept in Museum Boerhaave in Leiden and in the Deutsches Museum in Munich. Special attention is paid to the use of these models and the specific purposes they served. A closer examination of the models and their context reveals that they had an essential part to play in the early development and spread of Van 't Hoff's stereochemistry theory: he put his molecular models not only to versatile use as didactic tools, scientific instruments, and precursors to experimental proof, but also as devices to persuade other scientists of the usefulness of his theory. (shrink)
Dr. J. van Ginneken S.J., whose death occurred on the 20th of October 1945, was the author of the well-known "Principes de Linguistique psychologique". In the above article the writer commemorates Dr. van Ginneken particularly as a significist. During the years 1919-1924 the writer was privileged -- together with his friends L. E. J. Brouwer and Fred. van Eeden -- to collaborate with Dr. van Ginneken on the subject of significs. This collaboration has always been a precious memory to him. (...) It proved moreover, that profound differences in conception about life and world need not prevent a fertile exchange of thoughts, provided the participants are actuated by the serious will to fathom to the depth each other's mentality. (shrink)
Volume 1 of this biography of L. E. J. Brouwer was published in 1999.1 The volume under review here covers the period from the early nineteen twenties until Brouwer's death in 1966. It also includes a short epilogue that discusses the disposition of Brouwer's estate after his death, his influence on others, the paths of some of his students and colleagues, and other matters. Van Dalen notes in the Preface that in preparing this volume he consulted some historical studies that (...) appeared after the first volume was published. He also used new material from various archives. The biography contains interesting quotations from unpublished materials in the Brouwer Archive and from correspondence. The bibliographical references to Brouwer's publications, it should be noted, are somewhat different in this volume. This volume, like the first, contains some nice photographs and reproductions. I noted that there were many typographical errors in the earlier book but Volume 2 is relatively free of them.As is the case in Volume 1, the discussion of Brouwer's mathematical and philosophical work is woven into the narrative of Brouwer's life and times. The story in this volume starts with Brouwer's first contacts with Paul Alexandrov and Paul Urysohn in 1923. The interaction began when Urysohn announced that he had found a mistake in Brouwer's definition of dimension in Brouwer's 1913 paper on natural dimension. Was it just a slip of the pen, as Brouwer always maintained, or something more substantial? Urysohn and Alexandrov ultimately came to agree with Brouwer on the matter, and Urysohn was prepared to grant Brouwer priority for the definition of dimension. There were, however, ups and downs along the way. Karl Menger, through his own work in topology and dimension theory, soon got into the picture, and Brouwer and Menger were to …. (shrink)
In 2001 hield Johan J. Graafland zijn oratie Maatschappelijk ondernemen: analyse, verantwoording en fundering. Hiermee aanvaardde hij het ambt van bijzonder hoogleraar Economie, Onderneming en Ethiek aan de Universiteit van Tilburg. Graag wil ik Johan Graafland van harte feliciteren met zijn benoeming. Ik ervaar het toch steeds weer als een bijzondere zegen als christenen zo’n positie mogen bezetten. Ik wens hem veel vruchten toe op zijn arbeid. Op de nieuwjaarsconferentie 2002 van de Vereniging voor Reformatorische Wijsbegeerte heeft Graafland een lezing (...) gegeven waarin hij enkele momenten uit zijn oratie toelichtte. Op die conferentie mocht ik als co-referent optreden. De week voorafgaande aan de conferentie was ik voor een zakenreis in Taiwan. Ik kwam vrijdagsavonds weer in Nederland terug. Door een ongelukkige samenloop van omstandigheden kreeg ik ook toen pas de tekst van de oratie van Graafland in handen. De tijd was voor mij te kort — en de onvermijdelijke jet-lag werkt dan ook niet mee — om de oratie goed te bestuderen en op vruchtbare wijze te kunnen reageren. Ik had geen andere mogelijkheid dan een ‘eigen’ verhaal te houden . Graag wil ik nu van de gelegenheid gebruik maken om inhoudelijk op de oratie van Graafland in te gaan. (shrink)
Here, I shall argue that Van Helmont needs to be added to the list of sources on which Newton drew when formulating his doctrine of absolute time. This by no means implies that Van Helmont is the factual source of Newton's views on absolute time (I have found no clear-cut evidence in support of this claim). It is by no means my aim to debunk the importance of the other sources, but rather to broaden them. Different authors help to explain (...) different aspects of Newton's conception of absolute time. (shrink)
Van der Klaauw was a professor of Descriptive Zoology in the period 1934–1958. This paper presents a concise annotated overview of his publications. In his work three main topics can be recognized: comparative anatomy of the mammalian auditory region, theoretical studies about ecology and ecological morphology, and vertebrate functional morphology. In particular van der Klaauw developed new concepts on functional morphology, based upon a holistic approach. A series of studies in functional morphology of Vertebrates by his students is added. An (...) overview of recent morphological and theoretical studies show that this new approach had a long lasting impact in studies of functional morphology. (shrink)
This paper treats van Helmont's attack on Aristotle as an example of the difficulty of accounting for one author's attack on another by simply comparing the texts of the two authors. The Aristotle that van Helmont is attacking is the Aristotle represented in contemporary textbooks, and the attack on his authority is closely connected to the attack on the importance of verbal disputation in education. The importance of knowledge of Aristotle and of argumentative skills means van Helmont displays them to (...) claim competence in them, while arguing they are worthless, and states many of his own doctrines as denials of Aristotelian doctrines. After a brief account of van Helmont's cosmology, three texts of his are examined: the conclusion of Causae et initia naturalium, where van Helmont demonstrates the worthlessness of Aristotelian method, by giving an example of his own method's greater success, the beginning of Physica Aristotelis et Galeni ignara, where he argues in Aristotelian terms against an Aristotelian definition of nature, and his general attack on Aristotelian method and on verbal disputation in Logica inutilis. (shrink)