ABSTRACT Temporal dynamists argue that we should believe that there exists temporal passage because there being passage is the best explanation for the presence of our temporal phenomenology. Presentists argue that presentism is the best version of temporal dynamism. Therefore, conditional on us accepting temporal dynamism, we should accept presentism. In this paper it is argued that if we understand temporal passage as the presentist does, such an argument can succeed only if dualism is true. Thus, we conclude, either presentists (...) should embrace dualism, or they should reject any argument for presentism that proceeds via any such argument for temporal passage that proceeds via considerations of what best explains our temporal phenomenology. (shrink)
Simone Weil's rejection of pacifism -- The empire of force -- Love of neighbor versus totalitarianism -- Values for reading the universe -- Reading and justice -- Simone Weil and the Bhagavad-Gita -- Justice and the supernatural -- Neither victim nor executioner -- Appendix : English translations of Simone Weil's essays.
Psychological continuity theories have been the dominant theories of personal identity over time, and the phenomenal approach has largely been neglected because of the bridge problem. I propose a hybrid account of the persistence of the self that draws on both psychological and phenomenal influences while avoiding the problems that both theories face in their 'pure' form. Such a hybrid theory retains the benefits of a phenomenal account of intra-streamal unity, and provides a better account of inter-streamal unity with the (...) use of a psychological-continuity theory. (shrink)
"Anyone interested in Simone Weil will want, and need, to read this superb collection." —Diogenes Allen, Princeton Theological Seminary “These essays—some written by leading specialists in Simone Weil's thought, others by prominent theologians and philosophers of religion—are especially valuable not only for elucidating Weil's reading of Plato but also for showing what one or another form of Christian Platonism can mean for us today.” —James A. Wiseman, O.S.B., Catholic University of America "This remarkable and penetrating collection of essays on Simone (...) Weil's religious philosophy illumines the living intersection between serious metaphysics and ethics. The authors carefully examine this relation that much post-modern reflection has until now only skimmed, but that Weil herself managed to embrace with breathtaking intellectual discipline and self-giving. The book is a bracing testimony to the deep moral consequences of classical ontology and its challenging Christian reorientation." —The Rev. Dr. Ephraim Radner, Ascension Episcopal Church, Pueblo, Colorado In this book a group of renowned international scholars seek to discern the ways in which Simone Weil was indebted to Plato, and how her provocative readings of his work offer challenges to contemporary philosophy, theology, and spirituality. This is the first book in twenty years to systematically investigate Weil’s Christian Platonism. (shrink)
The author presents Simone Weil’s theory that force, an inherent part of the human condition, generates and regenerates its own existence. She examines three essays by Weil: ‘The Iliad or a Poem of Force’, ‘Reflections on War’, and ‘The Power of Words’. Doering situates the essays historically: their publication in French journals, as World War Two was looming, and again in the mid-1940s when translations of the essays appeared in Dwight Macdonald’s New York journal: politics. She applies to modern times (...) Weil’s conviction that the escalation of war preparations on grounds of national security inexorably undermines the belief in the supreme value of the individual. Major issues include the hyping of war as an act of interior politics, fear as a means of social control, freedom of thought in a permanent war economy, Dorothy Day on violence, the media in a democracy and the Greek concept of nemesis. (shrink)
Spanning over nine hundred years, Eight Women Philosophers is the first singly-authored work to trace the themes of standard philosophical theorizing and feminist thought across women philosophers in the Western tradition. Jane Duran has crafted a comprehensive overview of eight women philosophers--Hildegard of Bingen, Anne Conway, Mary Astell, Mary Wollstonecraft, Harriet Taylor Mill, Edith Stein, Simone Weil, and Simone de Beauvoir--that underscores the profound and continuing significance of these thinkers for contemporary scholars. Duran devotes one chapter to each philosopher (...) and provides a sustained critical analysis of her work, utilizing aspects of Continental theory, poststructuralist theory, and literary theory. (shrink)
Edith Stein is honored today not only because of her sainthood but because of what is now seen as important and groundbreaking work in phenomenology done under especially arduous conditions. Thus it may be said with some accuracy that Stein is, among philosophers, in the comparatively rare category of being acknowledged both for her work and her exemplary life. Writing on Stein has standardly proceeded with an emphasis on the biographical factors that caused her to live and write as she (...) did. One often reads that Stein was reared in a strongly Judaic tradition—her family was more observant, for example, than the family of Simone Weil—but that experiences she had as a young woman caused her to turn in the .. (shrink)
The “right to belong” is a human right in two ways. First, there is the right to belong in a limited sense, i.e., to the extent necessary for individuals to secure all other human rights, such as those recognized by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Second, there is a deeper aspect of the right to belong, that which is necessary to flourish as a human being. To establish, first, that the right to belong in a limited sense (...) should be a human right, I draw upon Hannah Arendt’s claim that stateless persons are without rights, as only communities can grant them. I argue that this limited level of belonging is a necessary but insufficient condition for human flourishing. Full human flourishing requires belonging on a deeper level. To articulate the nature of this deeper level of belonging I draw on Simone Weil’s definition of the “need for roots” and John Dewey and Jane Addams’ constructions of the self as social. I then show how “belonging” in a deeper sense necessarily connects with how a person is perceived and received by individuals and institutions in a community and argue that full perception by and participation in a community is necessary for humans to flourish. Thus, the right to belong imposes an ethical obligation on other members of the community to perceive undocumented immigrants as full human persons with the potential to lead flourishing lives. (shrink)
[Michael Tye] Externalism about thought contents has received enormous attention in the philosophical literature over the past fifteen years or so, and it is now the established view. There has been very little discussion, however, of whether memory contents are themselves susceptible to an externalist treatment. In this paper, I argue that anyone who is sympathetic to Twin Earth thought experiments for externalism with respect to certain thoughts should endorse externalism with respect to certain memories. /// [Jane Heal] Tye (...) claims that an externalist should say that memory content invoking natural kind concepts floats free of the setting where the memory is laid down and is at later times determined by the context in which the memory is revived. His argument assumes the existence of 'slow switching' of the meaning of natural kind terms when a person is transported from Earth to Twin Earth. But proper understanding of natural kind terms suggests that slow switching (contrary to what is often presupposed) is likely never to be completed. Hence the situation of a person unknowingly transported to Twin Earth is not that his memories switch content but rather that he gets two natural kinds confused. (shrink)
Simone Weil (1909-1943) was a defining figure of the twentieth century; a philosopher, Christian, resistance fighter, anarchist, feminist, labor activist and teacher. She was described by T. S. Eliot as "a woman of genius, of a kind of genius akin to that of the saints," and by Albert Camus as "the only great spirit of our time." Originally published posthumously in two volumes, these newly reissued notebooks, are among the very few unedited personal writings of Weil's that still survive today. (...) Containing her thoughts on art, love, science, God and the meaning of life, they give context and meaning to Weil's famous works, revealing a unique philosophy in development and offering a rare private glimpse of her singular personality. (shrink)
This is part of a complete set of Jane Austen's novels collating the editions published during the author's lifetime and previously unpublished manuscripts. The books are illustrated with 19th century plates and incorporate revisions by experts in the light of subsequent research.
Can we understand other minds ‘from the inside’? What would this mean? There is an attraction which many have felt in the idea that creatures with minds, people , invite a kind of understanding which inanimate objects such as rocks, plants and machines, do not invite and that it is appropriate to seek to understand them ‘from the inside’. What I hope to do in this paper is to introduce and defend one version of the so-called ‘simulation’ approach to our (...) grasp and use of psychological concepts, a version which gives central importance to the idea of shared rationality, and in so doing to tease out and defend one strand in the complex of ideas which finds expression in this mysterious phrase. (shrink)
In _Vibrant Matter_ the political theorist Jane Bennett, renowned for her work on nature, ethics, and affect, shifts her focus from the human experience of things to things themselves. Bennett argues that political theory needs to do a better job of recognizing the active participation of nonhuman forces in events. Toward that end, she theorizes a “vital materiality” that runs through and across bodies, both human and nonhuman. Bennett explores how political analyses of public events might change were we (...) to acknowledge that agency always emerges as the_ _effect of ad hoc configurations of human and nonhuman forces. She suggests that recognizing that agency is distributed this way, and is not solely the province of humans, might spur the cultivation of a more responsible, ecologically sound politics: a politics less devoted to blaming and condemning individuals than to discerning the web of forces affecting situations and events. Bennett examines the political and theoretical implications of vital materialism through extended discussions of commonplace things and physical phenomena including stem cells, fish oils, electricity, metal, and trash. She reflects on the vital power of material formations such as landfills, which generate lively streams of chemicals, and omega-3 fatty acids, which can transform brain chemistry and mood. Along the way, she engages with the concepts and claims of Spinoza, Nietzsche, Thoreau, Darwin, Adorno, and Deleuze, disclosing a long history of thinking about vibrant matter in Western philosophy, including attempts by Kant, Bergson, and the embryologist Hans Driesch to name the “vital force” inherent in material forms. Bennett concludes by sketching the contours of a “green materialist” ecophilosophy. (shrink)
The frequent occurrence of comorbidity has brought about an extensive theoretical debate in psychiatry. Why are the rates of psychiatric comorbidity so high and what are their implications for the ontological and epistemological status of comorbid psychiatric diseases? Current explanations focus either on classification choices or on causal ties between disorders. Based on empirical and philosophical arguments, we propose a conventionalist interpretation of psychiatric comorbidity instead. We argue that a conventionalist approach fits well with research and clinical practice and resolves (...) two problems for psychiatric diseases: experimenter’s regress and arbitrariness. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that suspension of judgment is intimately tied to inquiry and in particular that one is suspending judgment about some question if and only if one is inquiring into that question.
Abstract In this paper I undertake an in-depth examination of an oft mentioned but rarely expounded upon state: suspended judgment. While traditional epistemology is sometimes characterized as presenting a “yes or no” picture of its central attitudes, in fact many of these epistemologists want to say that there is a third option: subjects can also suspend judgment. Discussions of suspension are mostly brief and have been less than clear on a number of issues, in particular whether this third option should (...) be thought of as an attitude or not. In this paper I argue that suspended judgment is (or at least involves) a genuine attitude. Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-17 DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9753-y Authors Jane Friedman, St Catherine’s College, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX1 3UJ UK Journal Philosophical Studies Online ISSN 1573-0883 Print ISSN 0031-8116. (shrink)
Research questions and backgroundThis study explores a highly controversial issue of medical care in Germany: the decision to withhold or withdraw mechanical ventilation in critically ill patients. It analyzes difficulties in making these decisions and the physicians’ uncertainty in understanding the German terminology of Sterbehilfe, which is used in the context of treatment limitation. Used in everyday language, the word Sterbehilfe carries connotations such as helping the patient in the dying process or helping the patient to enter the dying process. (...) Yet, in the legal and ethical discourse Sterbehilfe indicates several concepts: (1) treatment limitation, i.e., withholding or withdrawing life-sustaining treatment (passive Sterbehilfe), (2) the use of medication for symptom control while taking into account the risk of hastening the patient’s death (indirekte Sterbehilfe), and (3) measures to deliberately terminate the patient’s life (aktive Sterbehilfe). The terminology of Sterbehilfe has been criticized for being too complex and misleading, particularly for practical purposes. Materials and methods An exploratory study based on qualitative interviews was conducted with 28 physicians from nine medical intensive care units in tertiary care hospitals in the German federal state of Baden-Wuerttemberg. The method of data collection was a problem-centered, semi-structured interview using two authentic clinical case examples. In order to shed light on the relation between the physicians’ concepts and the ethical and legal frames of reference, we analyzed their way of using the terms passive and aktive Sterbehilfe. Results Generally, the physicians were more hesitant in making decisions to withdraw rather than withhold mechanical ventilation. Almost half of them assumed a categorical prohibition to withdraw any mechanical ventilation and more than one third felt that treatment ought not to be withdrawn at all. Physicians showed specific uncertainty about classifying the withdrawal of mechanical ventilation as passive Sterbehilfe, and had difficulties understanding that terminating ventilation is not basically illegal, but the permissibility of withdrawal depends on the situation. Conclusions The physicians’ knowledge and skills in interpreting clinical ethical dilemmas require specific improvement on the one hand; on the other hand, the terms passive and aktive Sterbehilfe are less clear than desirable and not as easy to use in clinical practice. Fear of making unjustified or illegal decisions may motivate physicians to continue (even futile) treatment. Physicians strongly opt for more open discussion about end-of-life care to allow for discontinuation of futile treatment and to reduce conflict. (shrink)
Adolf Loos is one of the few figures that Wittgenstein explicitly named as an influence on his thought. Loos’s influence has been debated in the context of determining Wittgenstein’s relation to modernism, as well as in attempts to come to terms with his work as an architect. This paper looks in a different direction, examining a remark in which Wittgenstein responded to Heidegger’s notorious pronouncement that ‘the Nothing noths’ by reference to Loos’s critique of ornamentation. Wittgenstein draws a parallel between (...) the requirement to start philosophy with an inarticulate sound and the need, in certain cultural periods, to highlight the borders of tablecloths using lace. Paying heed to Wittgenstein’s remark sheds further light on a Loosian influence at work in his thinking about modern civilization, both in his well-known ‘Lectures on Aesthetics’ and in the earlier notes from his 1930 lectures at Cambridge. (shrink)
In this paper I revisit Gilbert Harman's arguments for a "clutter avoidance" norm. The norm -- which says that we ought to avoid cluttering our minds with trivialities -- is widely endorsed. I argue that it has some fairly dramatic consequences for normative epistemology.
Direct-to-consumer advertising of healthcare products refers to a variety of marketing practices based on a combination of information and promotion strategies directed at consumers through different media such as radio and television broadcasts, newspaper and magazine ads, and, more recently, through the Internet. The principal form of marketing used by the pharmaceutical industry is the distribution of free samples to physicians but DTCA is an increasing part of global promotional spending for prescription drugs. Latest estimates suggest that DTCA now represents (...) an annual $3.2 billion enterprise for the U.S. pharmaceutical industry. Findings from the literature show that these substantial efforts are geared toward the newer pharmaceuticals for chronic conditions with huge market potentials. The lion's share is going to the 20 most prescribed pharmaceuticals. (shrink)
This book examines the religious, social, and political thought of Simone Weil in the context of the rigorous philosophical thinking out of which it grew. It also explores illuminating parallels between these ideas and ideas that were simultaneously being developed by Ludwig Wittgenstein. Simone Weil developed a conception of the relation between human beings and nature which made it difficult for her to explain mutual understanding and justice. Her wrestling with this difficulty coincided with a considerable sharpening of her religious (...) sensibility, and led to a new concept of the natural and social orders involving a supernatural dimension, within which the concepts of beauty and justice are paramount. Professor Winch provides a fresh perspective on the complete span of Simone Weil's work, and discusses the fundamental difficulties of tracing the dividing line between philosophy and religion. (shrink)
Philosophers and psychologists have often maintained that in order to attribute mental states to other people one must have a ‘theory of mind’. This theory facilitates our grasp of other people’s mental states. Debate has then focussed on the form this theory should take. Recently a new approach has been suggested, which I call the ‘Direct Perception approach to social cognition’. This approach maintains that we can directly perceive other people’s mental states. It opposes traditional views on two counts: by (...) claiming that mental states are observable and by claiming that we can attribute them to others without the need for a theory of mind. This paper argues that there are two readings of the direct perception claims: a strong and a weak one. The Theory-theory is compatible with the weak version but not the strong one. The paper argues that the strong version of direct perception is untenable, drawing on evidence from the mirror neuron literature and arguments from the philosophy of science and perception to support this claim. It suggests that one traditional ‘theory of mind’ view, the ‘Theory-theory’ view, is compatible with the claim that mental states are observable, and concludes that direct perception views do not offer a viable alternative to theory of mind approaches to social cognition. (shrink)