In his “Noesis and Logos in the Eleatic Trilogy, with a Focus on the Visitor’s Jokes at Statesman 266a-d,” Mitchell Miller explores the interplay of intuition and discourse in the Statesman. He prepares by considering the orienting provocations provided by Socrates’ refutations of the proposed definition of knowledge — namely, “true judgment and a logos” — in the closing pages of the Theaetetus, by the Eleatic Visitor’s obscure schematization at Sophist 253d-e of the kinds of eidetic field discerned by (...) dialectic, and by his discussion at Statesman 277a-278e of the use of paradigms. Miller then seeks to show how the Visitor’s odd medley of geometrical and Homeric jokes at Statesman 266a-d aims, in the language of the Seventh Letter, to “spark” an intuition of the nature of statesmanship, an intuition whose “self-nourishing” motivates the subsequent rejection of the initial definition of the statesman as shepherd of the human herd, the turn to the paradigm of the weaver, and the rejection of bifurcatory division in favor of the non-bifurcatory account of the kinds of art that function as the “limbs” of a well-formed city. (shrink)
Critics of evolutionary psychology and sociobiology have advanced an adaptationists-as-right-wing-conspirators (ARC) hypothesis, suggesting that adaptationists use their research to support a right-wing political agenda. We report the first quantitative test of the ARC hypothesis based on an online survey of political and scientific attitudes among 168 US psychology Ph.D. students, 31 of whom self-identified as adaptationists and 137 others who identified with another non-adaptationist meta-theory. Results indicate that adaptationists are much less politically conservative than typical US citizens and no more (...) politically conservative than non-adaptationist graduate students. Also, contrary to the “adaptationists-as-pseudo-scientists” stereotype, adaptationists endorse more rigorous, progressive, quantitative scientific methods in the study of human behavior than non-adaptationists. (shrink)
Robert Miller | : This essay explores how myth functions as a means of revelation in Scripture. It first clarifies a definition of myth, and then discusses the appearance of myth in the Old Testament. Not only is myth found in the Bible, but its presence is of great importance. Considering the various functions of myths in general, it becomes indispensable that myth form a part of the inspired canon. Revelatory myth is essential, especially today. Finally, this essay considers (...) how one might recapture an appreciative reception of biblical myths. | : Cette contribution examine la fonction du mythe biblique. L’auteur y défend que le mythe est utilisé comme un instrument de révélation dans l’Écriture. Dans la première partie de cet article, l’auteur définit ce qu’est le mythe en général et comment il est employé dans l’Ancien Testament. Le mythe est non seulement présent dans la Bible, conclut-il, mais il y est d’une grande importance. En considérant les diverses fonctions du mythe, on ne peut que conclure que le mythe fait partie intégrante du canon inspiré. Aujourd’hui, le mythe révélateur est essentiel et, pour cette raison, la dernière partie de cet article examine comment on pourrait faire renaître une réception élogieuse du mythe biblique. (shrink)
We use the Low Basis Theorem of Jockusch and Soare to show that all computable algebraic fields are d-computably categorical for a particular Turing degree d with d' = θ", but that not all such fields are 0'-computably categorical. We also prove related results about algebraic fields with splitting algorithms, and fields of finite transcendence degree over ℚ.
The radical psychiatrist R. D. Laing's first book, The Divided Self (1960), is informed by the work of Christian thinkers on scriptural interpretation — an intellectual genealogy apparent in Laing's comparison of Karl Jaspers's symptomatology with the theological tradition of `form criticism'. Rudolf Bultmann's theology, which was being enthusiastically promoted in 1950s Scotland, is particularly influential upon Laing. It furnishes him with the notion that schizophrenic speech expresses existential truths as if they were statements about the physical and organic world. (...) It also provides him with a model of the schizoid position as a form of modern-day Stoicism. Such theological recontextualization of The Divided Self illuminates continuities in Laing's own work, and also indicates his relationship to a wider British context, such as the work of the `clinical theologian' Frank Lake. (shrink)
The neuroscientists Eugene d'Aquili and Andrew Newberg, in addition to defending an empirically fruitful model of mystical experiences, argue that such experiences constitute evidence for the existence of a transcendent reality, which they call "Absolute Unitary Being." D'Aquili and Newberg point out that mystical experiences carry with them a vivid sense of reality, and that they involve characteristic forms of brain activity, just like perceptions of objects in ordinary waking consciousness. Their argument for Absolute Unitary Being fails, however, since the (...) vivid sense of reality of an experience is not the sole criterion by which to judge its veridicality, since the object of mystical experiences cannot be confirmed by independent observers, and since there is no evidence for a mechanism by which mystics experience a transcendent reality. (shrink)
This is the first book by Joshua Gert, son of the well-known moral philosopher Bernard Gert. Among other things, Gert argues for a novel account of both objective and subjective rationality, a new theory of normative reasons, and a distinctive approach to construing the relationship between reasons for action and rationality. The result is an impressive book filled with interesting arguments and objections, which should advance philosophical discussions on a number of important issues.
A close reading of Theogony 116-133, showing the logic of opposites and of whole/part relations that governs Hesiod's account of cosmogenesis, refuting the traditional interpretation of the birth of Chaos as the split between heaven and earth, and providing evidence that Hesiod considered and decided against making Tartaros the parent of the cosmos.
As computer-based information systems start to have a great impact on people, organizations, and society as a whole, there is much debate about information technology in relation to social control and privacy, security and reliability, and ethics and professional responsibilities. However, more often than not, these debates reveal some fundamental disagreements, sometimes about first principles. In this article the authors suggest that a fruitful and interesting way to conceptualize some of these moral and ethical issues associated with the use of (...) information technology is to apply the principles of Aristotle's ethics to this topic. They argue that framing the moral and ethical choices associated with information technology in Aristotelian terms draws attention to the fact that there are fundamental dilemmas to be addressed. These dilemmas are discussed in relation to the four areas suggested by Dejoie, Fowler, and Paradice (1991): (a) privacy, (b) information accuracy, (c) access to information, and (d) intellectual property rights. The dilemmas associated with all four areas are illustrated with references to recent legal developments in Australia and New Zealand. (shrink)
Although informed consent is important in clinical research, questions persist regarding when it is necessary, what it requires, and how it should be obtained. The standard view in research ethics is that the function of informed consent is to respect individual autonomy. However, consent processes are multidimensional and serve other ethical functions as well. These functions deserve particular attention when barriers to consent exist. We argue that consent serves seven ethically important and conceptually distinct functions. The first four functions pertain (...) principally to individual participants: providing transparency; allowing control and authorization; promoting concordance with participants' values; and protecting and promoting welfare interests. Three other functions are systemic or policy focused: promoting trust; satisfying regulatory requirements; and promoting integrity in research. Reframing consent around these functions can guide approaches to consent that are context sensitive and that maximize achievable goals. (shrink)
Fred Miller offers a controversial reappraisal of the Politics, suggesting that nature, justice, and rights are central to Aristotle's political thought. He sheds new light on Aristotle's relation to modern natural rights theorists, and to the current liberalism-communitarianism debate.
Miller, D., G. Nadathur, F. Pfenning and A. Scedrov, Uniform proofs as a foundation for logic programming, Annals of Pure and Applied Logic 51 125–157. A proof-theoretic characterization of logical languages that form suitable bases for Prolog-like programming languages is provided. This characterization is based on the principle that the declarative meaning of a logic program, provided by provability in a logical system, should coincide with its operational meaning, provided by interpreting logical connectives as simple and fixed search instructions. (...) The operational semantics is formalized by the identification of a class of cut-free sequent proofs called uniform proofs. A uniform proof is one that can be found by a goal-directed search that respects the interpretation of the logical connectives as search instructions. The concept of a uniform proof is used to define the notion of an abstract logic programming language, and it is shown that first-order and higher-order Horn clauses with classical provability are examples of such a language. Horn clauses are then generalized to hereditary Harrop formulas and it is shown that first-order and higher-order versions of this new class of formulas are also abstract logic programming languages if the inference rules are those of either intuitionistic or minimal logic. The programming language significance of the various generalizations to first-order Horn clauses is briefly discussed. (shrink)
The propensity interpretation of probability, bred by Popper in 1957(K. R. Popper, in Observation and Interpretation in the Philosophy of Physics,S. Körner, ed. (Butterworth, London, 1957, and Dover, New York, 1962), p. 65; reprinted in Popper Selections,D. W. Miller, ed. (Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1985), p. 199) from pure frequency stock, is the only extant objectivist account that provides any proper understanding of single-case probabilities as well as of probabilities in ensembles and in the long run. In Sec. 1 (...) of this paper I recall salient points of the frequency interpretations of von Mises and of Popper himself, and in Sec. 2 I filter out from Popper's numerous expositions of the propensity interpretation its most interesting and fertile strain. I then go on to assess it. First I defend it, in Sec. 3, against recent criticisms(P. Humphreys, Philos. Rev.94,557 (1985); P. Milne, Erkenntnis25,129 (1986)) to the effect that conditional [or relative] probabilities, unlike absolute probabilities, can only rarely be made sense of as propensities. I then challenge its predominance, in Sec. 4, by outlining a rival theory: an irreproachably objectivist theory of probability, fully applicable to the single case, that interprets physical probabilities asinstantaneous frequencies. (shrink)
This concise anthology of primary sources designed for use in an ancient philosophy survey ranges from the Presocratics to Plato, Aristotle, the Hellenistic philosophers, and the Neoplatonists. The Second Edition features an amplified selection of Presocratic fragments in newly revised translations by Richard D. McKirahan. Also included is an expansion of the Hellenistic unit, featuring new selections from Lucretius and Sextus Empiricus as well as a new translation, by Peter J. Anderson, of most of Seneca's _De Providentia_. The selections from (...) Plotinus have also been expanded. (shrink)
The self-communication of being and the human person’s intellectual vocation to draw it gradually into logos are important themes in the writing of W. Norris Clarke. This paper addresses two related obstacles to understanding the person’s individual essence: (1) the limited intellectual reach of the potential knower, who has no access to another’s subjectivity, (2) the person’s inability to reveal her individual essence in any one act and the need for it to be gradually unfolded. These obstacles can be partially (...) surmounted through motivational narrative, as developed by Arthur Miller, wherein persons describe those actions to which they are uniquely inclined and that bring profound fulfillment. The privileged recipient has rich access into the narrator’s subjectivity and opportunity to see in the story an ontologically stable pattern of motivated behavior that expresses her individual essence. (shrink)
Les professeurs Macey et Miller analysent la relation entre lassurance des dépôts et l inadé quation dans la structure des échéances des actifs et passifs des banques commerciales. Après avoir critiqué lhypothèse traditionnelle concernant la réglementation, daprès laquelle les banques sont incitées à financer les actifs à long terme par des passifs à court terme parce que lassurance des dépôts garantie par lEtat stimule le crédit des banques et subventionne les passifs à court terme, ils utilisent lanalyse économique des (...) décisions publiques pour soutenir quune version modifiée de lhypothèse de la réglementation est la meilleure explication de la déstructuration des échéances des actifs et passifs bancaires.Finalement, ils considèrent que soutenir lhypothèse de la réglementation nentraîne pas l acceptation du modèle dassurance des dépôts garantie par lEtat tel quil existe aux Etats-Unis aujourdhui.Professors Macey and Miller explore the relationship between deposit insurance and the mismatch in the term structure of commercial banks assets and liabilities. After criticizing the traditional regulatory hypothesis, which posits that banks have incentives to fund long-term assets with short-term liabilities because government-sponsored deposit insurance enhances bank credit and subsidizes short-term liabilities, they use public choice theory to argue that a modified version of the regulatory hypothesis is the best explanation for the mismatch in the term structure of banks assets and liabilities. Finally, they argue that embracing the regulatory hypothesis does not imply acceptance of the government-sponsored deposit insurance scheme as it exists in the U.S. today. (shrink)
Miller and Rodgers (2001) proposed a central nervous system based Ontogenetic Bonding System that operates across the life course to promote succorant, 1 affiliative, sexual, and nurturant bonds. I discuss features of this theoretical framework that can inform Depue & Morrone-Strupinsky's (D&M-S's) model. Most important, I suggest that the affiliative reward processes D&M-S describe are better conceptualized as subserving the affect/motivation of affection. Footnotes1 “Succorance” is a term coined by Murray (1938) to describe a general tendency to seek the (...) help and protection of others. (shrink)
We seek to change the conversation about brain death by highlighting the distinction between brain death as a biological concept versus brain death as a legal status. The fact that brain death does not cohere with any biologically plausible definition of death has been known for decades. Nevertheless, this fact has not threatened the acceptance of brain death as a legal status that permits individuals to be treated as if they are dead. The similarities between “legally dead” and “legally blind” (...) demonstrate how we may legitimately choose bright-line legal definitions that do not cohere with biological reality. Not only does this distinction bring conceptual coherence to the conversation about brain death, but it has practical implications as well. Once brain death is recognized as a social construction not grounded in biological reality, we create the possibility of changing the social construction in ways that may better serve both organ donors and recipients alike. (shrink)
The prefrontal cortex has long been suspected to play an important role in cognitive control, in the ability to orchestrate thought and action in accordance with internal goals. Its neural basis, however, has remained a mystery. Here, we propose that cognitive control stems from the active maintenance of patterns of activity in the prefrontal cortex that represent goals and the means to achieve them. They provide bias signals to other brain structures whose net effect is to guide the flow of (...) activity along neural pathways that establish the proper mappings between inputs, internal states, and outputs needed to perform a given task. We review neurophysiological, neurobiological, neuroimaging, and computational studies that support this theory and discuss its implications as well as further issues to be addressed. (shrink)
The idea that there could be spatially extended mereological simples has recently been defended by a number of metaphysicians (Markosian 1998, 2004; Simons 2004; Parsons (2000) also takes the idea seriously). Peter Simons (2004) goes further, arguing not only that spatially extended mereological simples (henceforth just extended simples) are possible, but that it is more plausible that our world is composed of such simples, than that it is composed of either point-sized simples, or of atomless gunk. The difficulty for these (...) views lies in explaining why it is that the various sub-volumes of space occupied by such simples, are not occupied by proper parts of those simples. Intuitively at least, many of us find compelling the idea that spatially extended objects have proper parts at every sub-volume of the region they occupy. It seems that the defender of extended simples must reject a seemingly plausible claim, what Simons calls the geometric correspondence principle (GCP): that any (spatially) extended object has parts that correspond to the parts of the region that it occupies (Simons 2004: 371). We disagree. We think that GCP is a plausible principle. We also think it is plausible that our world is composed of extended simples. We reconcile these two notions by two means. On the one hand we pay closer attention to the physics of our world. On the other hand, we consider what happens when our concept of something—in this case space—contains elements not all of which are realized in anything, but instead key components are realized in different features of the world. (shrink)
Advances in life-saving technologies in the past few decades have challenged our traditional understandings of death. Traditionally, death was understood to occur when a person stops breathing, their heart stops beating and they are cold to the touch. Today, physicians determine death by relying on a diagnosis of ‘total brain failure’ or by waiting a short while after circulation stops. Evidence has emerged, however, that the conceptual bases for these approaches to determining death are fundamentally flawed and depart substantially from (...) the established biological conception of death. We argue that the current approach to determining death consists of two different types of unacknowledged legal fictions. These legal fictions were developed for practices that are largely ethically legitimate but need to be reconciled with the law. The considerable debate over the determination of death in the medical and scientific literature has not informed the public that vital organs are being procured from still-living donors and it seems unlikely that this information can remain hidden for long. Given the instability of the status quo and the difficulty of making the substantial legal changes required by complete transparency, we argue for a second-best policy solution: acknowledging the legal fictions involved in determining death to move in the direction of greater transparency. This may someday result in more substantial legal change to directly confront the challenges raised by life-sustaining and life-preserving technologies without the need for fictions. (shrink)
: This paper presents a method of moral problem solving in clinical practice that is inspired by the philosophy of John Dewey. This method, called "clinical pragmatism," integrates clinical and ethical decision making. Clinical pragmatism focuses on the interpersonal processes of assessment and consensus formation as well as the ethical analysis of relevant moral considerations. The steps in this method are delineated and then illustrated through a detailed case study. The implications of clinical pragmatism for the use of principles in (...) moral problem solving are discussed. (shrink)
Dual-track assessment directs research ethics committees to assess the risks of research interventions based on the unclear distinction between therapeutic and non-therapeutic interventions. The net risks test, in contrast, relies on the clinically familiar method of assessing the risks and benefits of interventions in comparison to the available alternatives and also focuses attention of the RECs on the central challenge of protecting research participants.Research guidelines around the world recognise that clinical research is ethical only when the risks to participants are (...) reasonable.1 Appropriate implementation of this requirement is vital to protecting research participants and allowing research to proceed when it poses acceptable risks. Unfortunately, as the US National Bioethics Advisory Commission notes: “current regulations do not further elaborate how risks and potential benefits are to be assessed, and little additional guidance is available to IRBs.”1The NBAC, as well as numerous commentators, recommend that research ethics committees , ethics review committees and institutional review boards should adopt what may be called dual-track risk assessment.2–5 Yet, dual-track assessment unnecessarily divides research interventions into two different categories before assessing their risks and relies on the unclear distinction between therapeutic and non-therapeutic interventions. As a result, dual-track assessment provides RECs with confusing guidance and has the potential to block valuable research that poses acceptable risks. This paper describes one alternative, the net risks test, and argues that this approach offers a better method for assessing research risks, one that puts RECs in a position to protect participants without blocking appropriate research studies.BACKGROUNDClinical research exposes participants to interventions and procedures to gather systematic data that may be used to improve overall health and well-being. To ensure that research is ethical, RECs must ensure that the risks and burdens to participants are not excessive and that …. (shrink)
Harold Noonan has recently argued (2003) that one of Lewis’s (1983: 76– 77) arguments for the view that objects persist by perduring is flawed. Lewis’s argument can be divided into two main sections, the first of which attempts to show that it is possible that there exists a world of temporal parts or stages, and the second, which attempts to show that our world is such a world. Noonan claims that there is a flaw in each of these two stages.We (...) argue to the contrary. (shrink)