While previous studies of Dewey's work have taken either a historical or topical focus, Shook offers an innovative, organic approach to understanding Dewey and eloquently shows that Dewey's instrumentalism grew seamlessly out of his idealism. He argues that most current scholarship operates under a mistaken impression of Dewey's early philosophical positions.
Atheology, accurately defined by Alvin Plantinga, offers reasons why god’s existence is implausible. Skeptically reasoning that theological arguments for god fail to make their case is one way of leaving supernaturalism in an implausible condition. This ‘rationalist’ atheology appeals to logical standards to point out fallacies and other sorts of inferential gaps. Beyond that methodological marker, few shared tactics characterize atheists and agnostics stalking theological targets. If unbelief be grounded on reason, let atheology start from a theological stronghold: the principle (...) of sufficient reason, a cornerstone of rationality. Seven rules, corollaries to that principle, are enough to show how theological arguments for god repeatedly contravene rationality by perpetuating mysteries, contradictions, begging of questions, pseudo-explanations, and the like. None of these complaints are new, nor has theology been unaware of them. Disorganized atheology has, so far, allowed theology to appear to answer them. Five major arguments for god are systematically analyzed and refuted using these seven rules of rationality, as a preliminary exercise illustrating this re-organized and re-focused rationalist atheology. (shrink)
Neuroethics applies cognitive neuroscience for prescribing alterations to conceptions of self and society, and for prescriptively judging the ethical applications of neurotechnologies. Plentiful normative premises are available to ground such prescriptivity, however prescriptive neuroethics may remain fragmented by social conventions, cultural ideologies, and ethical theories. Herein we offer that an objectively principled neuroethics for international relevance requires a new meta-ethics: understanding how morality works, and how humans manage and improve morality, as objectively based on the brain and social sciences. This (...) new meta-ethics will simultaneously equip neuroethics for evaluating and revising older cultural ideologies and ethical theories, and direct neuroethics towards scientifically valid views of encultured humans intelligently managing moralities. Bypassing absolutism, cultural essentialisms, and unrealistic ethical philosophies, neuroethics arrives at a small set of principles about proper human flourishing that are more culturally inclusive and cosmopolitan in spirit. This cosmopolitanism in turn suggests augmentations to traditional medical ethics in the form of four principled guidelines for international consideration: empowerment, non-obsolescence, self-creativity, and citizenship. (shrink)
How should ethics help decide the morality of enhancing morality? The idea of morally enhancing the human brain quickly emerged when the promise of cognitive enhancement in general began to seem realizable. However, on reflection, achieving moral enhancement must be limited by the practical challenges to any sort of cognitive modification, along with obstacles particular to morality’s bases in social cognition. The objectivity offered by the brain sciences cannot ensure the technological achievement of moral bioenhancement for humanity-wide application. Additionally, any (...) limited moral enhancement will not easily fulfil ethical expectations. Three hypothetical scenarios involving putative moral enhancement help illustrate why. Philosophical concerns about the “Does-Must Dichotomy” and the “Factor-Cause Plurality,” as I label them, forbid easy leaps from views about morality on to conclusions about ways to enhance morality, and then further on to ethically justifying those enhancements. A modest and realistic approach to moral enhancement emerges from exploring these issues. (shrink)
Abstract: Comparative political philosophy can be stimulated by imposing a categorization scheme on possible varieties of political philosophies. This article develops a categorization scheme using four essential features of political philosophies, resulting in twelve archetypal political philosophies. The four essential features selected are a political philosophy's views concerning human nature, the proper function of morality, the best form of society, and the highest responsibility of citizenship. The twelve archetypal political philosophies range from the communal (Rousseau), the democratic (J. S. Mill), (...) the representative (Aristotle), the aristocratic (Plato), and the autocratic (Calvin), along with seven more archetypes: the aloof anarchy, social anarchy, contractarian, progressive, natural law, sage ruler, and tyrannical political forms. A wide variety of Western political philosophers are assigned their places within this categorization scheme to illustrate its utility and comprehensiveness. (shrink)
Entrepreneurship cannot be explained by any economic theory that isolates innovation from ongoing social processes or locates creativity in a space of given, fixed values. Unfortunately, mainstream economics has committed these mistakes, rooted in instrumentalist and antidemocratic notions of consumption and rationality that permits reasoning only about means toward given ends. Genuine innovation is, on Dewey's pragmatic approach to values, the intelligent modification of both means and ends for experimental action. When joined to an appreciation that consumption is just a (...) phase of production, innovation can be properly seen as productive value-creation. Entrepreneurship is democratic experimentation in the economic realm. (shrink)
Designed to fill a large gap in American philosophy scholarship, this bibliography covers the first four decades of the pragmatic movement. It references most of the philosophical works by the twelve major figures of pragmatism: Charles S. Peirce, William James, John Dewey, George H. Mead, F.C.S. Schiller, Giovanni Papini, Giovanni Vailati, Guiseppe Prezzolini, Mario Calderoni, A.W. Moore, John E. Boodin, and C.I. Lewis. It also includes writings of dozens of minor pragmatic writers, along with those by commentators and critics of (...) pragmatism. It encompasses literature not only concerning pragmatism as an alliance of philosophical theories of meaning, inquiry, belief, knowledge, logic, truth, ontology, value, and morality, but also as an intellectual and cultural force impacting art, literature, education, the social and natural sciences, religion, and politics.This bibliography contains 2,794 main entries and more than 2,000 additional references, organized by year of publication. 2,101 of the references include annotation. Its international scope is focused on writings in English, French, German, and Italian, though many other languages are also represented. Peter H. Hare contributed the Guest Preface. The introduction contains an historical orientation to pragmatism and guides to recent studies of pragmatic figures. This work is extensively cross-referenced, and it has exhaustive and lengthy author and subject indexes. (shrink)
The roles of abductive inference in dynamic heuristics allows scientific methodologies to test novel explanations for the world’s ways. Deliberate reasoning often follows abductive patterns, as well as patterns dominated by deduction and induction, but complex mixtures of these three modes of inference are crucial for scientific explanation. All possible mixed inferences are formulated and categorized using a novel typology and nomenclature. Twenty five possible combinations among abduction, induction, and deduction are assembled and analyzed in order of complexity. There are (...) five primary categories for sorting these inferential procedures: fallacies, non-scientific procedures, quasi-scientific procedures, scientific procedures, and scientific heuristics. (shrink)
Peter Hare published two books about philosophy, both co-authored with his colleague Edward Madden. The first was Evil and the Problem of God, while the second was titled Causing, Perceiving and Believing: An Examination of the Philosophy of C. J. Ducasse (Dordrecht, Holland: D. Reidel), published in 97 . Hare's choice of Ducasse for extended study tells us a great deal about Hare's own interests. Ducasse was a confessedly analytic philosopher who advocated several views extending classical American themes. From metaphysics (...) and epistemology to ethics and aesthetics, Ducasse struck Hare as a philosopher worthy of promotion and preservation.Hare and Madden had an interest in Ducasse for some years.1 However, there .. (shrink)
The distinction between hard and soft facts has been used by compatibilists to argue that God's divine foreknowledge is not incompatible with human free will. The debate over this distinction has ignored the question of the justification of divine knowledge. I argue that the distinction between hard and soft facts is illusory because the existence of soft facts presupposes that justification exists. Moreover, if the hard fact /soft fact distinction collapses, then God justifiably knows all future events, and human beings (...) cannot possess free will. (shrink)
Paul Kurtz will be long remembered as the late twentieth century’s pre-eminent philosophical defender of freethinking rationalism and skepticism, the scientific worldview to replace superstition and religion, the healthy ethics of humanism, and democracy’s foundation in secularism. Reason, science, ethics, and civics – Kurtz repeatedly cycled through these affirmative agendas, not only to relegate religion to humanity’s ignorant past, but mainly to indicate the direction of humanity’s better future.
Charles S. Peirce believed that his pragmatic philosophy could reconcile religion and science and that this reconciliation involves a religious ethics creating a real community with the cosmos and God. After some rival pragmatic approaches to God and religious belief inconsistent with Peirce's philosophy are set aside, his metaphysical plan for a reconciliation of religion and science is outlined. A panentheistic God makes the best match with his desired conclusions from the Neglected Argument for the reality of God, and this (...) God is also capable of fulfilling the pragmatic role demanded by Peirce's ethical expectations for the intelligent functioning of religion. The discussion proceeds to an elaboration of the aesthetic, metaphysical, and ethical elements of Peirce's philosophical system, which indicate why Peirce's religious ethics is best categorized as akin to Stoicism, with some Christian elements. For Peirce, religious ethics proceeds from the (potentially universal) agapic community's cooperation with God's loving creativity of the universe. (shrink)
This book raises many moral, legal, social, and political, questions related to possible development, in the near future, of an artificial womb for human use. Is ectogenesis ever morally permissible? If so, under what circumstances? Will ectogenesis enhance or diminish women's reproductive rights and/or their economic opportunities? These are some of the difficult and crucial questions this anthology addresses and attempts to answer.
_A Companion to Pragmatism,_ comprised of 38 newly commissioned essays, provides comprehensive coverage of one of the most vibrant and exciting fields of philosophy today. Unique in depth and coverage of classical figures and their philosophies as well as pragmatism as a living force in philosophy. Chapters include discussions on philosophers such as John Dewey, Jürgen Habermas and Hilary Putnam.