Partial functions can be easily represented in set theory as certain sets of ordered pairs. However, classical set theory provides no special machinery for reasoning about partial functions. For instance, there is no direct way of handling the application of a function to an argument outside its domain as in partial logic. There is also no utilization of lambda-notation and sorts or types as in type theory. This paper introduces a version of von-Neumann-Bernays-Gödel set theory for reasoning about sets, proper (...) classes, and partial functions represented as classes of ordered pairs. The underlying logic of the system is a partial first-order logic, so class-valued terms may be nondenoting. Functions can be specified using lambda-notation, and reasoning about the application of functions to arguments is facilitated using sorts similar to those employed in the logic of the IMPS Interactive Mathematical Proof System. The set theory is intended to serve as a foundation for mechanized mathematics systems. (shrink)
For millennia, philosophers have speculated about the origins of ethics. Recent research in evolutionary psychology and the neurosciences has shed light on that question. But this research also has normative significance. A standard way of arguing against a normative ethical theory is to show that in some circumstances the theory leads to judgments that are contrary to our common moral intuitions. If, however, these moral intuitions are the biological residue of our evolutionary history, it is not clear why we should (...) regard them as having any normative force. Research in the neurosciences should therefore lead us to reconsider the role of intuitions in normative ethics. (shrink)
Republic 554c-d—where the oligarchic individual is said to restrain his appetites ‘by compulsion and fear’, rather than by persuasion or by taming them with speech—is often cited as evidence that the appetitive part of the soul can be ‘persuaded’. I argue that the passage does not actually support that conclusion. I offer an alternative reading and suggest that appetite, on Plato’s view, is not open to persuasion.
Joshua 13–21 makes the remarkable claim that the Lord conquered, possessed, and gave the land as a gift to Israel. Although these chapters likely originated in political concerns of Israelite kings, the theological cast of the material outstrips any political motivations that gave rise to the material. The enduring role of this section of Joshua is to shape a society devoted to and dependent on God.
Machine generated contents note: -- Introduction; Martin D. Yaffe and Richard S. Ruderman -- 1. How Strauss Became Strauss; Heinrich Meier -- 2. Spinoza's Critique of Religion: Reading Too Literally and Not Reading Literally Enough; Steven Frank -- 3. The Light Shed on the Crucial Development of Strauss's Thought by his Correspondence with Gerhard Krüger; Thomas L. Pangle -- 4. Strauss on Hermann Cohen's 'Idealizing' Appropriation of Maimonides as a Platonist; Martin D. Yaffe -- 5. Strauss on the Religious and (...) Intellectual Situation of the Present; Timothy W. Burns -- 6. Carl Schmitt and Strauss's Return to Pre-Modern Philosophy; Nasser Behnegar -- 7. Strauss, Hobbes, and the Origins of Natural Science; Timothy W. Burns -- 8. Strauss on Farabi, Maimonides, et al. in the 1930s; Joshua Parens -- 9. The Problem of the Enlightenment: Strauss, Jacobi, and the Pantheism Controversy; David Janssens -- 10. 'Through the Keyhole': Strauss's Rediscovery of Classical Political Philosophy in Xenophon's Constitution of the Lacedaemonians; Richard S. Ruderman -- 11. Strauss and Schleiermacher on How to Read Plato: An Introduction to 'Exoteric Teaching'; Hannes Kerber -- Appendix: Seven Writings by Leo Strauss -- A. 'Conspectivism' (1929); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- B. 'Religious Situation of the Present' (1930); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- C. 'The Intellectual Situation of the Present' (1932); Translated by Anna Schmidt and Martin D. Yaffe -- D. 'A Lost Writing of Farâbîs' (1936); Translated by Gabriel Bartlett and Martin D. Yaffe -- E. 'On Abravanel's Critique of Monarchy' (1937); Translated by Martin D. Yaffe -- F. 'Exoteric Teaching' (1939); Edited by Hannes Kerber -- G. Lecture Notes for 'Persecution and the Art of Writing' (1939); Edited by Hannes Kerber -- Provided by publisher. (shrink)
In this article I explain why cognitive science (including some neuroscience) matters for normative ethics. First, I describe the dual-process theory of moral judgment and briefly summarize the evidence supporting it. Next I describe related experimental research examining influences on intuitive moral judgment. I then describe two ways in which research along these lines can have implications for ethics. I argue that a deeper understanding of moral psychology favors certain forms of consequentialism over other classes of normative moral theory. I (...) close with some brief remarks concerning the bright future of ethics as an interdisciplinary enterprise. (shrink)
While there is much evidence for the influence of automatic emotional responses on moral judgment, the roles of reflection and reasoning remain uncertain. In Experiment 1, we induced subjects to be more reflective by completing the Cognitive Reflection Test prior to responding to moral dilemmas. This manipulation increased utilitarian responding, as individuals who reflected more on the CRT made more utilitarian judgments. A follow-up study suggested that trait reflectiveness is also associated with increased utilitarian judgment. In Experiment 2, subjects considered (...) a scenario involving incest between consenting adult siblings, a scenario known for eliciting emotionally driven condemnation that resists reasoned persuasion. Here, we manipulated two factors related to moral reasoning: argument strength and deliberation time. These factors interacted in a manner consistent with moral reasoning: A strong argument defending the incestuous behavior was more persuasive than a weak argument, but only when increased deliberation time encouraged subjects to reflect. (shrink)
Recent research in moral psychology highlights the role of emotion and intuition in moral judgment. In the wake of these findings, the role and significance of moral reasoning remain uncertain. In this article, we distinguish among different kinds of moral reasoning and review evidence suggesting that at least some kinds of moral reasoning play significant roles in moral judgment, including roles in abandoning moral intuitions in the absence of justifying reasons, applying both deontological and utilitarian moral principles, and counteracting automatic (...) tendencies toward bias that would otherwise dominate behavior. We argue that little is known about the psychology of moral reasoning and that it may yet prove to be a potent social force. (shrink)
The organization is importantly different from both the nation-state and the individual and hence needs its own ethical models and theories, distinct from political and moral theory. To develop a case for organizational ethics, this paper advances arguments in three directions. First, it highlights the growing role of organizations and their distinctive attributes. Second, it illuminates the incongruities between organizations and moral and political philosophy. Third, it takes these incongruities, as well as organizations’ distinctive attributes, as a starting point for (...) suggesting an agenda for an ethics of organizations. (shrink)
This paper introduces a framework for thinking about ontological questions—in particular, the Special Composition Question—and shows how the framework might help support something like an account of restricted composition. The framework takes the form of an account of natural objects, in analogy with David Lewis’s account of natural properties. Objects, like properties, come in various metaphysical grades, from the fundamental, fully objective, perfectly natural objects to the nomologically otiose, maximally gerrymandered, perfectly non-natural objects. The perfectly natural objects, I argue, are (...) the mereological simples, and (roughly) a collection composes an object of degree-n naturalness if and only if its members are arranged F-wise, for some property F that appears in the degree-n natural laws. Arbitrary composites turn out to be perfectly non-natural objects and are metaphysical bystanders. Ordinary composite objects fall in between. Some—e.g., atoms—are very (though not perfectly) natural; others—e.g., tables—are highly non-natural. (shrink)
This article is comprised of a dialogue between Pentecostal-Charismatic and Process-Relational theologies on the perennial issue of miracles. The language of supernaturalism, widely employed by Pentecostal-Charismatic theologians, is contrasted with the metaphysical naturalism of Process-Relational theology; it is proposed that a philosophically and scientifically sensitive theology of miracles is possible through a synthesis of both traditions. Themes such as nonmaterialism over materialism, spiritual experience, and prayer for healing miracles are explored. A theology of miracles, mutually informed by both Pentecostal-Charismatic and (...) Process-Relational theologies, may focus less on whether or not miracles are possible, but instead focus more on what kind of miracles human beings might value most. By mutually engaging a theology of nonsupernatural, metaphysically grounded miracles, Pentecostal-Charismatic and Process-Relational theologians may collaborate to establish the groundwork for creative scientific enterprises, especially in the non-Western world where Pentecostalism continues to experience its most rapid growth, Such perspectives may eventually lead to cutting-edge discoveries about the fundamental nature of, and God's interaction with, reality itself. Implications for future research are proposed. (shrink)
Psychological forces in play across individual, group, and organizational levels of analysis increase the likelihood that people inbusiness organizations will engage in misconduct. Therefore, it is argued, we must turn our attention from dominant normative and empirical trends in business ethics, which revolve around boundaries and constraints, and instead concentrate on methods for promoting ethical behavior in practice, exploiting psychological forces conducive to ethical conduct. This calls for a better understanding of how organizations and their inhabitants function, and, in turn, (...) it points to pragmatic solutions. Ethical conduct can be promoted by (1) normatively justifying vivid aims worthy of pursuit alongside economic objectives, and (2) empirically identifying the conditions and practices that advance those aims in firms. This approach challenges us to bring empirical and normative inquiry together—in ways unsettling to both. It pushes us to move beyond an empirical preoccupation with decision making and judgment, and it requires us to cope with political liberalism’s legitimate qualms about discussions of the good. (shrink)
Intuitively, vagueness involves some sort of indeterminacy: if Plato is a borderline case of baldness, then there is no fact of the matter about whether or not he’s bald—he’s neither bald nor not bald. The leading formal treatments of such indeterminacy—three valued logic, supervaluationism, etc.—either fail to validate the classical theorems, or require that various classically valid inference rules be restricted. Here we show how a fully classical, yet indeterminist account of vagueness can be given within natural semantics, an alternative (...) semantics for classical proof theory. The key features of the account are: there is a single notion of truth—definite truth—and a single notion of validity; sentences can be true, false, or undetermined; all classical theorems and all classical inference rule are valid; the sorites argument is unsound; ‘definitely’ is treated as a meta-language predicate; higher-order vagueness is handled via semantic ascent. (shrink)
Quine, taking the molecular constitution of matter as a paradigmatic example, offers an account of the relation between theory confirmation and ontology. Elsewhere, he deploys a similar ontological methodology to argue for the existence of mathematical objects. Penelope Maddy considers the atomic/molecular theory in more historical detail. She argues that the actual ontological practices of science display a positivistic demand for “direct observation,” and that fulfillment of this demand allows us to distinguish molecules and other physical objects from mathematical abstracta. (...) However, the confirmation of the atomic/molecular theory and the development of scientists’ ontological attitudes towards atoms was more complicated and subtle than even Maddy supposes. The present paper argues that the history of the theory in fact supports neither Quine’s and Maddy’s accounts of scientific ontology. There was no general demand from scientists to “see” atoms before they were reckoned to be real; but neither did the indispensable appearance of atoms in the best theory of chemical combination suffice to convince scientists of their reality. (shrink)
Psychological forces in play across individual, group, and organizational levels of analysis increase the likelihood that people inbusiness organizations will engage in misconduct. Therefore, it is argued, we must turn our attention from dominant normative and empirical trends in business ethics, which revolve around boundaries and constraints, and instead concentrate on methods for promoting ethical behavior in practice, exploiting psychological forces conducive to ethical conduct. This calls for a better understanding of how organizations and their inhabitants function, and, in turn, (...) it points to pragmatic solutions. Ethical conduct can be promoted by normatively justifying vivid aims worthy of pursuit alongside economic objectives, and empirically identifying the conditions and practices that advance those aims in firms. This approach challenges us to bring empirical and normative inquiry together—in ways unsettling to both. It pushes us to move beyond an empirical preoccupation with decision making and judgment, and it requires us to cope with political liberalism’s legitimate qualms about discussions of the good. (shrink)
New natural lawyers--notably Grisez, Finnis, and George--have written much on civil marriage's moral boundaries and grounds, but with slight influence. The peripheral place of the new natural law theory (NNLT) results from the marital grounds they suggest and the exclusionary moral conclusions they draw from them. However, I argue a more authentic and attractive NNLT account of marriage is recoverable through overlooked resources within the theory itself: friendship and moral self-constitution. This reconstructed account allows us to identify the relation between (...) marriage and human flourishing and the morality of same-sex marriage without making marriage infinitely plastic. (shrink)
Why does it matter that every negative thought you have had about car salespeople, they have likely had about you? The answerto this question opens up the distinctive challenges, and opportunities, facing business ethics. Those challenges and opportunitiesemerge from the significant bearing organizational reality has upon individuals’ conduct. As we consider how to assign responsibilityfor misconduct; how to provide guidance to organizational actors about what they ought to do; and how to develop responsive ethicaltheory, we need to take psychological and (...) social forces into account. Organizations shape human behavior in ways that pose unavoidable questions about responsibility, practical guidance, and the enterprise of business ethics itself. Adopting the agents’ perspective suggests that business ethics can take a leading role in addressing these vexing questions that confront ethical inquiry and social science more broadly. (shrink)
In “Epistemic Modals,” Seth Yalcin argues that what explains the deficiency of sentences containing epistemic modals of the form ‘p and it might be that not-p’ is that sentences of this sort are strictly contradictory, and thus are not instances of a Moore-paradox as has been previous suggested. Benjamin Schnieder, however, argues in his Yalcin’s explanation of these sentences’ deficiency turns out to be insufficiently general, as it cannot account for less complex but still defective sentences, such as ‘Suppose it (...) might be raining.’ Consequently, Schnieder proposes his own, expressivist treatment of epistemic modals which he thinks can explain the deficiency of both the original sentence type as well as more complex cases of embedded sentences containing epistemic modals. In this study, I argue that although Schnieder is right to draw our attention to the explanatory failure of Yalcin’s account, we aren’t forced to adopt Schnieder’s expressivist account of epistemic modals. I defend instead a contextualist-friendly alternative which explains the deficiencies of all the relevant sentence types, while avoiding both the defects of Yalcin’s account and the intuitive costs of expressivism. (shrink)
In philosophy, a debate can live forever. Nowhere is this more evident than in ethics, a field that is fueled by apparently intractable dilemmas. To promote the wellbeing of many, may we sacrifice the rights of a few? If our actions are predetermined, can we be held responsible for them? Should people be judged on their intentions alone, or also by the consequences of their behavior? Is failing to prevent someone’s death as blameworthy as actively causing it? For generations, questions (...) like these have provoked passionate arguments and counterarguments, but few clear answers. Here, we offer a psychological account of why philosophical dilemmas arise, why they resist resolution, and why scientists should pay attention to them. Building on a family of recent proposals (Cushman & Young, 2009; Greene, 2008; Sinnott- Armstrong, 2008), we argue that dilemmas result from conflict between dissociable psychological processes. When two such processes yield different answers to the same question, that question becomes a “dilemma”. No matter which answer you choose, part of you walks away dissatisfied. This explanation of philosophical dilemmas has an important payoff for psychological research, and we discuss two specific cases in which it has yielded promising results. In each case, social neuroscience has played an important role in distinguishing the psychological processes responsible for producing a dilemma. This, we suggest, is no accident; cognitive neuroscientific methods are particularly well-suited to dissociating independent psychological processes (Henson, 2006). Consequently, philosophers’ dilemmas provide a reliable guide toward productive cognitive neuroscience by identifying the contours of distinct psychological process. The research we review below focuses particularly on moral dilemmas, which is our own area of expertise. The psychological processes that contribute to moral judgment are of interest in their own right, and play a central role in social cognition.. (shrink)
Efforts to trace the evolutionary antecedents of human morality introduce challenges and opportunities for business ethics. The biological precedents of responsibility suggest that human tendencies to respond morally are deeply rooted. This does not mean, however, that those tendencies are always consistent with ends human beings seek to pursue. This paper investigates the conflicts that may arise between human beings’ moral predispositions and the purposes human beings pursue.