The problem of evil is not only a logical problem about God's goodness but also an existential problem about the sense of God's presence, which the Biblical book of Job conceives as a problem of aesthetic experience. Thus, just as theism can be grounded in religious experience, atheism can be grounded in experience of evil. This phenomenon is illustrated by two contrasting literary descriptions of aesthetic experience by Jean-Paul Sartre and Annie Dillard. I illuminate both of these literary texts with (...) a discussion of the 18th Century philosopher Lord Shaftesbury's concept of ‘enthusiasm’. (shrink)
Without the maternal hold, without its herethical ethics and sublimation, without the stability that this hold can bring, we are melancholically or defensively driven to commit the most heinous acts of atrocity and violence in the name of eternal life, development, and progress. For the most part, Kristeva has described the combination of personal loss and social, cultural, and historical pressures brought to bear on the vexed sublimation of the maternal hold by artists like Giovanni Bellini. More recently, however, her (...) attention has turned to other contemporary examples, in particular, Max Beckmann whose works, she claims, sublimate the loss of the maternal hold itself. They are examples of a Sacred Family, a Pietà, or a Dormition that have undergone a radical transformation. They are representations of a society, a culture, indeed a world, that is losing its maternal hold; a world that is losing both its herethical ethics, and the capacity to sublimate its apoptotic inheritance. Following Kristeva, I will put Eduardo Lalo’s book of poems and drawings Necrópolis in a tradition of representation of the maternal hold that is close to a thousand years old. This tradition goes from the confrontation with nothingness in Theophane the Greek’s Dormition to the modern matricide represented in Pablo Picasso’s Maternity Apple. (shrink)
Annie Besant is primarily remembered as the international president of the Theosophical Society. One of the most important aspects of her career were the years that she was a professional atheist, which has given her a place in history as a pioneer feminist. _The Origins of Theosophy _contains thirteen of Besant’s pamphlets, originally published from 1883-1890. This book is ideal for students of theology.
This essay discusses engineering ethics in Puerto Rico by examining the impact of the Colegio de Ingenieros y Agrimensores de Puerto Rico (CIAPR) and by outlining the constellation of problems and issues identified in workshops and retreats held with Puerto Rican engineers. Three cases developed and discussed in these workshops will help outline movements in engineering ethics beyond the compliance perspective of the CIAPR. These include the Town Z case, Copper Mining in Puerto Rico, and a hypothetical (...) case researched by UPRM students on laptop disposal. The last section outlines four future challenges in engineering ethics pertinent to the Puerto Rican situation. (shrink)
When Annie Besant landed in India she disavowed all political intent, but she soon became a militant nationalist — the only Western woman ever elected President of Congress. This essay explains her entry into politics by tracing the way her secular and socialist heritage informed her intellectual challenge to the ruling discourse of the Raj. In Britain, her theosophy acted as an alternative religious discourse, combining aspects of a secularist critique of Christianity with a defence of Eastern religions. In India, (...) it acted as a religious and social discourse that asserted the legitimacy, even superiority, of the indigenous culture. More generally, a study of Besant's opposition to the Raj illuminates the logic of a view of India shared by many nationalists. It shows how this view of India arose in dialectical opposition to the legitimating discourse of empire. (shrink)
This paper examines ethical violations committed by Certified Public Accountants in Puerto Rico in the 2002–2010 period and the related disciplinary actions taken by the local regulatory bodies. The institutional settings for the accounting profession in PR are different from those of the United States. Ethical complaints are investigated by the PR Society of CPAs and evaluated based on the Code of Professional Conduct of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, although most CPAs in PR are not affiliated (...) with the AICPA. Our study is based on data provided by the PR Society of CPAs that is not publicly available. We examine the association between the occurrence of the ethical violations and certain variables such as gender, type of practice performed by the CPA, and whether the CPA participates in a peer review program. Results of a multiple correspondence analysis suggest that not being a member of the AICPA, practicing as a sole practitioner, and not participating in a peer review program seem to be more associated with the occurrences of ethical violations by CPAs. We compare our findings with prior research on ethical infractions committed by CPAs in the United States and find some differences attributable to the institutional settings in PR. Overall, our results suggest the importance of codes of conduct in the accounting profession and compliance with such ethical guidelines by practicing accountants. (shrink)
The United States Federal Government has repeatedly put the people of Vieques, Puerto Rico in harm’s way due to the injurious after-effects of air-to-ground weapons testing. Most of the harm happened during the Navy’s 70 years on the island. Yet, the harm continues today considering that aspects of the cleanup count as continued acts of environmental injustice, viewed within the context of the island’s colonial history. Usually, this harm deals with public health issues, but the remediation protocols do not (...) account for considerations such as cultural identity and heritage. This paper shows how the procedures for environmental remediation in Vieques qualify as a case of environmental injustice according to Robert M. Figueroa’s ‘environmental justice paradigm.’ The aim of employing this kind of approach is to pinpoint the underlying reasons why this is a case of environmental injustice. (shrink)
Non-heterosexual men have long existed on the social and cultural margins. Gay and bisexual male characters in literature, too, have done so for many generations. This essay explores the construction of gay masculinity in the short story “Brokeback Mountain” in relation to the “imaginative leap” that its author, Annie Proulx, undertook in order to conceptualize and represent this noteworthy form of marginalized otherness. It demonstrates that, despite the story’s various refreshing elements, “Brokeback Mountain” ultimately relies far too extensively on the (...) logic of melodrama when telling the tale of Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, who fall in love in 1963 and continue their sexual relationship over the course of two decades. As a result, this story ends up positioning its two queer protagonists as enemies of the patriarchal social order and the larger society within which it so comfortably exists, implicitly perpetuating both heterosexism and homophobia as it does its cultural work. (shrink)
This essay reflects on some aspects of the brain in a vat problem through a consideration of the work of the sculptor Annie Cattrell. Cattrell’s series of sculptures ‘Sense’ render in three dimensions MRI scans of different sensory functions in the human brain. These objects—which could be said to represent thought itself stilled and suspended in a transparent medium—make dramatically visible the doctrine of the localization of brain function. The essay argues that the brain in a vat problem in philosophy (...) is an outcome of the same neural ‘mapping’ project as made Cattrell’s ‘thought in a vat’ possible. An interview with the artist reveals a moral dimension to her preoccupation with the localization of function. The article therefore goes on to consider the brain in a vat in the context of some of the history and ethics of the localizationist paradigm. (shrink)
In 2005 the new Governor of Puerto Rico appointed a panel of experts to evaluate the healthcare system of Puerto Rico and make recommendations. Among other things, the panel recommended the creation of an advisory board on bioethics for the commonwealth of Puerto Rico.
This paper explores the careers of several British women astronomers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. I postulate that the only category of scientific practice open to most of these women was that of an ‘amateur’. They would have become professionals had they had the opportunity but since they were barred from professional status they used their talents to promote the importance of amateur science. I propose the term ‘obligatory amateur’ for these women who, unlike men, were unable (...) to choose amateur or professional status. I explore this concept of a ‘gendered’ amateurism through the life and works of Annie Maunder, with references to British women astronomers contemporary with her. (shrink)
After the United States invaded Puerto Rico in 1898, the new unincorporated territory sought to define its future. Seeking to shape the next generation and generate popular support for colonial rule, U.S. officials looked to education as a key venue for promoting the benefits of Americanization. At the same time, public schools became a site where Puerto Rican teachers, parents, and students could formulate and advance their own projects for building citizenship. In _Negotiating Empire_, Solsiree del Moral demonstrates how (...) these colonial intermediaries aimed for regeneration and progress through education. Rather than seeing U.S. empire in Puerto Rico during this period as a contest between two sharply polarized groups, del Moral views their interaction as a process of negotiation. Although educators and families rejected some tenets of Americanization, such as English-language instruction, they also redefined and appropriated others to their benefit to increase literacy and skills required for better occupations and social mobility. Pushing their citizenship-building vision through the schools, Puerto Ricans negotiated a different school project—one that was reformist yet radical, modern yet traditional, colonial yet nationalist. (shrink)
The editors of this collection set out with the intention of extending the debate in the ethics of belief beyond its traditional topics, such as whether it is ever permissible to form beliefs on insufficient evidence, and if pragmatic concerns should play a role in responsible belief formation. The result is that this collection covers an expansive range of material.Some of the topics that are covered are in keeping with the traditional bounds of the literature, such as whether direct doxastic (...) control is possible , and whether normativity in epistemology is properly thought of as epistemic or ethical .Somewhat less orthodox, but still in keeping with traditional subject matter, is Battaly’s chapter, in which she usefully clarifies various ways of thinking about virtue and vice in both ethics and epistemology. Battaly’s chapter is slightly outside of th .. (shrink)
Resumen: Entre el pensamiento de José Gaos y el de Eduardo Nicol se cierne una diferencia sustancial en torno al concepto de la filosofía. Para el primero, ésta es una suerte de confesión personal; mientras que para Nicol la filosofía debe ser producto de una hazaña dialógica y el conocimiento tiene que ser objetivo.: José Gaos’s and Eduardo Nicol’s concepts of philosophy differ substantially. For the former, philosophy is a sort of personal confession, whereas for the later it must be (...) the outcome of dialogical achievement, and as for knowledge, this has to be objective. (shrink)