The book then discusses another group of issues ("whether it is, what it is, how and why it is"), which determined the argumentation, the axiomatic ordering of the sciences, and concludes with a demonstration on the basis of concrete ...
Ontic structural realists hold that structure is all there is, or at least all there is fundamentally. This thesis has proved to be puzzling: What exactly does it say about the relationship between objects and structures? In this article, I look at different ways of articulating ontic structural realism in terms of the relation between structures and objects. I show that objects cannot be reduced to structure, and argue that ontological dependence cannot be used to establish strong forms of structural (...) realism. At the end, I show how a weaker, but controversial, form of structural realism can be articulated on the basis of ontological dependence. (shrink)
This article argues that Lara Buchak’s risk-weighted expected utility theory fails to offer a true alternative to expected utility theory. Under commonly held assumptions about dynamic choice and the framing of decision problems, rational agents are guided by their attitudes to temporally extended courses of action. If so, REU theory makes approximately the same recommendations as expected utility theory. Being more permissive about dynamic choice or framing, however, undermines the theory’s claim to capturing a steady choice disposition in the face (...) of risk. I argue that this poses a challenge to alternatives to expected utility theory more generally. (shrink)
Some scientists are happy to follow in the footsteps of others; some like to explore novel approaches. It is tempting to think that herein lies an epistemic division of labor conducive to overall scientific progress: the latter point the way to fruitful areas of research, and the former more fully explore those areas. Weisberg and Muldoon’s model, however, suggests that it would be best if all scientists explored novel approaches. I argue that this is due to implausible modeling choices, and (...) I present an alternative ‘epistemic landscape’ model that demonstrates the alleged benefits from division of labor, with one restriction. (shrink)
This paper argues that instrumental rationality is more permissive than expected utility theory. The most compelling instrumentalist argument in favour of separability, its core requirement, is that agents with non-separable preferences end up badly off by their own lights in some dynamic choice problems. I argue that once we focus on the question of whether agents’ attitudes to uncertain prospects help define their ends in their own right, or instead only assign instrumental value in virtue of the outcomes they may (...) lead to, we see that the argument must fail. Either attitudes to prospects assign non-instrumental value in their own right, in which case we cannot establish the irrationality of the dynamic choice behaviour of agents with non-separable preferences. Or they don’t, in which case agents with non-separable preferences can avoid the problematic choice behaviour without adopting separable preferences. (shrink)
Realists about science tend to hold that our scientific theories aim for the truth, that our successful theories are at least partly true, and that the entities referred to by the theoretical terms of these theories exist. Antirealists about science deny one or more of these claims. A sizable minority of philosophers of science prefers not to take sides: they believe the realism debate to be fundamentally mistaken and seek to abstain from it altogether. In analogy with other realism debates (...) I will call these philosophers quietists. In the philosophy of science quietism often takes a somewhat peculiar form, which I will call naturalistic quietism. In this paper I will characterize Maddy’s Second Philosophy as a form of naturalistic quietism, and show what the costs for making it feasible are. (shrink)
Freedom and the subject were guiding themes for Michel Foucault throughout his philosophical career. In this clear and comprehensive analysis of his thought, Johanna Oksala identifies the different interpretations of freedom in his philosophy and examines three major divisions of it: the archaeological, the genealogical, and the ethical. She shows convincingly that in order to appreciate Foucault's project fully we must understand his complex relationship to phenomenology, and she discusses Foucault's treatment of the body in relation to recent feminist (...) work on this topic. Her sophisticated but lucid book illuminates the possibilities that Foucault's philosophy opens up for us in thinking about freedom. (shrink)
In this paper I aim to answer two questions: Can spin be treated as a determinable? Can a treatment of spin as a determinable be used to understand quantum indeterminacy? In response to the first question I show that the relations among spin number, spin components and spin values cannot be captured by a single determination relation; instead we need to look at spin number and spin value separately. In response to the second question I discuss three ways in which (...) the determinables model might be modified to account for indeterminacy, and argue that none of them is fully successful in helping us to understand quantum indeterminacy. (shrink)
Are laws of nature necessary, and if so, are all laws of nature necessary in the same way? This question has played an important role in recent discussion of laws of nature. I argue that not all laws of nature are necessary in the same way: conservation laws are perhaps to be regarded as metaphysically necessary. This sheds light on both the modal character of conservation laws and the relationship between different varieties of necessity.
In this article, we use content and cluster analysis on a global sample of 200 social entrepreneurial organizations to develop a typology of social entrepreneuring models. This typology is based on four possible forms of capital that can be leveraged: social, economic, human, and political. Furthermore, our findings reveal that these four social entrepreneuring models are associated with distinct logics of justification that may explain different ways of organizing across organizations. This study contributes to understanding social entrepreneurship as a field (...) of practice and it describes avenues for theorizing about the different organizational approaches adopted by social entrepreneurs. (shrink)
This paper defends revealed preference theory against a pervasive line of criticism, according to which revealed preference methodology relies on appealing to some mental states, in particular an agent’s beliefs, rendering the project incoherent or unmotivated. I argue that all that is established by these arguments is that revealed preference theorists must accept a limited mentalism in their account of the options an agent should be modelled as choosing between. This is consistent both with an essentially behavioural interpretation of preference (...) and with standard revealed preference methodology. And it does not undermine the core motivations of revealed preference theory. (shrink)
In 'How Should We Aggregate Competing Claims', Alex Voorhoeve suggests accommodating intuitions about duties in rescue cases by combining aggregative and non-aggregative elements into one theory. In this paper, I discuss two problems Voorhoeve’s theory faces as a result of requiring a cyclic pattern of choice, and argue that his attempt to solve them does not succeed.
Most philosophical decision theorists and philosophers of the social sciences believe that decision theory is and should be in the business of providing folk psychological explanations of choice behaviour, and that it can only do so if we understand the preferences, utilities and probabilities that feature in decision-theoretic models as ascriptions of mental states not reducible to choice. The behavioural interpretation of preference and related concepts, still common in economics, is consequently cast as misguided. This paper argues that even those (...) who strive to provide folk psychological explanations should side with the economists, and adopt a behavioural interpretation of the preferences featuring in decision-theoretic models. Under a mentalistic interpretation of preference, decision-theoretic models do not straightforwardly provide ordinary folk psychological explanations. Instead, they involve controversial enough commitments about the mental causes of choice to not only fail to adequately capture much unreflective decision-making, but also many intentional, reason-based and instrumentally rational choices. Satisfactory folk psychological explanation in fact only comes indirectly from inferring more fundamental conative attitudes from a pattern of decision-theoretic preferences. And the behavioural interpretation does a better job at facilitating such inferences. My argument extends to the related concepts of utility and probability. (shrink)
Risk-weighted expected utility theory is motivated by small-world problems like the Allais paradox, but it is a grand-world theory by nature. And, at the grand-world level, its ability to handle the Allais paradox is dubious. The REU model described in Risk and Rationality turns out to be risk-seeking rather than risk-averse on one natural way of formulating the Allais gambles in the grand-world context. This result illustrates a general problem with the case for REU theory, we argue. There is a (...) tension between the small-world thinking marshaled against standard expected utility theory, and the grand-world thinking inherent to the risk-weighted alternative. (shrink)
This important new collection considers Jurgen Habermas's discourse theory from a variety of feminist vantage points. Feminist scholars have been drawn to Habermas's work because it reflects a tradition of emancipatory political thinking rooted in the Enlightenment and engages with the normative aims of emancipatory social movements. The essays in Feminists Read Habermas analyze various aspects of Habermas's work, ranging from his moral theory to political issues of identity and participation. The contributors share a conviction about the potential significance of (...) Habermas's work for feminist reflections on power, norms and subjectivity. (shrink)
Ariane Fischer, David Woodruff, and Johanna Bockman have translated Karl Polanyi’s “Sozialistische Rechnungslegung” [“Socialist Accounting”] from 1922. In this article, Polanyi laid out his model of a future socialism, a world in which the economy is subordinated to society. Polanyi described the nature of this society and a kind of socialism that he would remain committed to his entire life. Accompanying the translation is the preface titled “Socialism and the embedded economy.” In the preface, Bockman explains the historical context (...) of the article and its significance to the socialist calculation debate, the social sciences, and socialism more broadly. Based on her reading of the accounting and society that Polanyi offers here, Bockman argues that scholars have too narrowly used Polanyi’s work to support the Keynesian welfare state to the exclusion of other institutions, have too broadly used his work to study social institutions indiscriminately, and have not recognized that his work shares fundamental commonalities with and often unacknowledged distinctions from neoclassical economics. (shrink)
Discourse ethics represents an exciting new development in neo-Kantian moral theory. William Rehg offers an insightful introduction to its complex theorization by its major proponent, Jürgen Habermas, and demonstrates how discourse ethics allows one to overcome the principal criticisms that have been leveled against neo-Kantianism. Addressing both "commun-itarian" critics who argue that universalist conceptions of justice sever moral deliberation from community traditions, and feminist advocates of the "ethics of care" who stress the moral significance of caring for other individuals, Rehg (...) shows that discourse ethics combines impartiality with solidarity. He provides the first systematic reconstruction of Habermas's theory and explores its relationship to the work of such contemporary philosophers as Charles Taylor. His book articulates a bold alternative to the split between the "right" and the "good" in moral theory and will greatly interest philosophers, social and legal scholars, and political theorists. (shrink)
A neuropsychological perspective on auditory verbal hallucinations links key phenomenological features of the experience, such as voice location and identity, to functionally separable pathways in normal human audition. Although this auditory processing stream framework has proven valuable for integrating research on phenomenology with cognitive and neural accounts of hallucinatory experiences, it has not yet been applied to other symptoms presumed to be closely related to AVH – such as thought insertion. In this paper, I propose that an APS framework offers (...) a useful way of thinking about the experience of TI as well as AVH, providing a common conceptual framework for both. I argue that previous self-monitoring theories struggle to account for both the differences and similarities in the characteristic features of AVH and TI, which can be readily accommodated within an APS framework. Furthermore, the APS framework can be integrated with predictive processing accounts of psychotic symptoms; makes predictions about potential sites of prediction error signals; and may offer a template for understanding a range of other symptoms beyond AVH and TI. (shrink)
In the dynamic choice literature, temptations are usually understood as temporary shifts in an agent’s preferences. What has been puzzling about these cases is that, on the one hand, an agent seems to do better by her own lights if she does not give into the temptation, and does so without engaging in costly commitment strategies. This seems to indicate that it is instrumentally irrational for her to give into temptation. On the other hand, resisting temptation also requires her to (...) act contrary to the preferences she has at the time of temptation. But that seems to be instrumentally irrational as well. I here consider the two most prominent types of argument why resisting temptation could nevertheless be instrumentally rational, namely two-tier and intra-personal cooperation arguments. I establish that the arguments either fail or are redundant. In particular, the arguments fail under the pervasive assumption in both decision theory and the wider literature on practical rationality that the agent’s preferences over the objects of choice are themselves the standard of instrumental rationality. And they either still fail or they become redundant when we give up that assumption. (shrink)
General Process Theory (GPT) is a new (non-Whiteheadian) process ontology. According to GPT the domains of scientific inquiry and everyday practice consist of configurations of ‘goings-on’ or ‘dynamics’ that can be technically defined as concrete, dynamic, non-particular individuals called general processes. The paper offers a brief introduction to GPT in order to provide ontological foundations for research programs such as interactivism that centrally rely on the notions of ‘process,’ ‘interaction,’ and ‘emergence.’ I begin with an analysis of our common sense (...) concept of activities, which plays a crucial heuristic role in the development of the notion of a general process. General processes are not individuated in terms of their location but in terms of ‘what they do,’ i.e., in terms of their dynamic relationships in the basic sense of one process being part of another. The formal framework of GPT is thus an extensional mereology, albeit a non-classical theory with a non-transitive part-relation. After a brief sketch of basic notions and strategies of the GPT-framework I show how the latter may be applied to distinguish between causal, mechanistic, functional, self-maintaining, and recursively self-maintaining interactions, all of which involve ‘emergent phenomena’ in various senses of the term. (shrink)
This book argues the case for a foundationalist ethics centrally based on an empirical understanding of human nature. For Maxine Sheets-Johnstone, “an ethics formulated on the foundations of anything other than human nature, hence on anything other than an identification of pan-cultural human realities, lacks solid empirical moorings. It easily loses itself in isolated hypotheticals, reductionist scenarios, or theoretical abstractions—in the prisoner’s dilemma, selfish genes, dedicated brain modules, evolutionary altruism, or psychological egoism, for example—or it easily becomes itself an ethical (...) system over and above the ethics it formulates,” such as the deontological ethics of Kantian categorical imperatives, the utilitarianism of Bentham and Mill, or the ethics of care. Taking her cue from Hume, especially his _Treatise on Human Nature_, where he grounds “the moral sense” in human nature seen as always in tension between the natural tendencies of selfish acquisitiveness and sympathy for others, Sheets-Johnstone pursues her phenomenological investigation of the natural basis of human morality by directing her attention, first in Part I, to what is traditionally considered the dark side of human nature, and then, in Part II, to the positive side. The tension between the two calls for an interdisciplinary therapeutic resolution, which she offers in the Epilogue by arguing for the value of a moral education that enlightens humans about their own human nature, highlighting both the socialization of fear and the importance of play and creativity. (shrink)
In Risk and Rationality, Lara Buchak advertised REU theory as able to recover the modal preferences in the Allais paradox. But we pointed out that REU theory only applies in the “grand world” setting, where it actually struggles with the modal Allais preferences. Buchak offers two replies. Here we enumerate technical and philosophical problems they face.
Carl Schmitt's notion of nomos is commonly regarded as the international equivalent to the national sovereign's decision on the exception. But can concrete spatial order alone turn a constellation of forces into an international order? This article looks at Schmitt's work The Nomos of the Earth and proposes that it is the process of bracketing war called Hegung which takes the place of the sovereign in the international order Schmitt describes. Beginning from an analysis of nomos, the ordering function of (...) the presocratic concept moira is explored. It is argued that the process of Hegung, like moira, does not just achieve the containment of war, but constitutes the condition of possibility for plural order. (shrink)
The potential health risks of vegan diets specifically for women and children are discussed. Women and children are at higher risk of malnutrition from consumption of unsupplemented vegan diets than are adult males. Those who are very young, pregnant, lactating, elderly, or who suffer from poverty, disease or other environmentally induced disadvantages are at special risk. The size of these risks is difficult to quantify from existing studies. Fortunately the risk of dietary deficiency disease can be avoided and the potential (...) health benefits of vegan diets can be realized when diets for these groups are planned in line with theRecommended Dietary Allowances so that nutrient intakes reach or exceed recommended levels, and access to preventive and curative health services is assured. (shrink)
Judgementalism is an interpretation of normative decision theory according to which preferences are all-things-considered judgements of relative desirability, and the only attitudes that rationally constrain choice. The defence of judgementalism we find in Richard Bradley’s Decision Theory with a Human Face relies on a kind of internalism about the requirements of rationality, according to which they supervene on an agent’s mental states, and in particular those she can reason from. I argue that even if we grant such internalism, attitudes other (...) than preferences in the judgementalist sense rationally constrain choice. This ultimately supports a different interpretation of preference. (shrink)
Most papers in theoretical economics contain thought experiments. They take the form of more informal bits of reasoning that precede the presentation of the formal, mathematical models these papers are known for. These thought experiments differ from the formal models in various ways. In particular, they do not invoke the same idealized assumptions about the rationality, knowledge, and preferences of agents. The presence of thought experiments in papers that present formal models, and the fact that they differ from the formal (...) models in this way, is often ignored in debates on what, if anything, we can learn from formal models in theoretical economics. I show that paying due attention to thought experiments in theoretical economics has serious implications for this debate. Differences between thought experiments and formal models are especially problematic for Robert Sugden’s “credible worlds” account. (shrink)
Appraisal theory has become one of the most active aproaches in the domain of emotion psychology. The appraisal process consists of the subjective evaluation that occurs during the individual's encounter with significant events in the environment, determining the nature of the emotional reaction and experience. The organism's interpretation of events and situations elicits and differentiates its emotional responses, although the exact processes involved and the limits of the theory are still a matter of debate and are currently the object of (...) active research. This volume is intended to become the primary source of information on appraisal for all those interested in emotion, from beginning graduate students to accomplished researchers in emotion psychology. (shrink)
The teaching of ethics in UK medical schools has recently been reviewed, from the perspective of the teachers themselves. A questionnaire survey of medical undergraduates at King’s College London School of Medicine provides useful insight into the students’ perception of ethics education, what they consider to be the value of learning ethics and law, and how engaged they feel with the subject.