Infertility can be an agonizing experience, especially for women. And, much of the agony has to do with luck: with how unlucky one is in being infertile, and in how much luck is involved in determining whether one can weather the storm of infertility and perhaps have a child in the end. We argue that bad luck associated with being infertile is often bad moral luck for women. The infertile woman often blames herself or is blamed by others for what (...) is happening to her, even when she cannot control or prevent what is happening to her. She has simply had bad luck. We focus on the self-blame of infertile women and show how it stems from pro-natalism that targets women. We also argue that overall for women, regret is a better moral response to infertility than self-blame. (shrink)
Conscience in Reproductive Health Care responds to the growing worldwide trend of health care professionals conscientiously refusing to provide abortions and similar reproductive health services in countries where these services are legal and professionally accepted. Carolyn McLeod argues that conscientious objectors in health care should prioritize the interests of patients in receiving care over their own interest in acting on their conscience. She defends this "prioritizing approach" to conscientious objection over the more popular "compromise approach" without downplaying the importance (...) of health care professionals having a conscience or the moral complexity of their conscientious refusals. McLeod's central argument is that health care professionals who are gatekeepers of services such as abortions are fiduciaries for their patients and for the public they are licensed to serve. As such, they owe a duty of loyalty to these beneficiaries and should give primacy to their beneficiaries' interests in accessing care. This conclusion is informed by what McLeod believes is morally at stake for the main parties to the conflicts generated by conscientious refusals: the objector and the patient. What is at stake, according to McLeod, depends on the relevant socio-political context, but typically includes the objector's integrity and the patient's interest in avoiding harm. (shrink)
In this adventurous contribution to the project of combining philosophy and biology to understand the mind, Carolyn Price investigates what it means to say that mental states--like thoughts, wishes, and perceptual experiences--are about things in the natural world. Her insight into this deep philosophical problem offers a novel teleological account of intentional content, grounded in and shaped by a carefully constructed theory of functions. Along the way she defends her view from recent objections to teleological theories and indicates how (...) it might be applied to notable problems in the philosophy of mind. (shrink)
Things: In Touch with the Past explores the value of artifacts that have survived from the past and that can be said to "embody" their histories. Such genuine or "real" things afford a particular kind of aesthetic experience-an encounter with the past-despite the fact that genuineness is not a perceptually detectable property.
With the arrival of European explorers and settlers during the seventeenth century, Native American ways of life and the environment itself underwent radical alterations as human relationships to the land and ways of thinking about nature all changed. This colonial ecological revolution held sway until the nineteenth century, when New England's industrial production brought on a capitalist revolution that again remade the ecology, economy, and conceptions of nature in the region. In Ecological Revolutions, Carolyn Merchant analyzes these two major (...) transformations in the New England environment between 1600 and 1860. In a preface to the second edition, Merchant introduces new ideas about narrating environmental change based on gender and the dialectics of transformation, while the revised epilogue situates New England in the context of twenty-first-century globalization and climate change. Merchant argues that past ways of relating to the land could become an inspiration for renewing resources and achieving sustainability in the future. (shrink)
Visionary quests to return to the Garden of Eden have shaped Western culture from Columbus' voyages to today's tropical island retreats. Few narratives are so powerful - and, as Carolyn Merchant shows, so misguided and destructive - as the dream of recapturing a lost paradise. A sweeping account of these quixotic endeavors by one of America's leading environmentalists, Reinventing Eden traces the idea of rebuilding the primeval garden from its origins to its latest incarnations in shopping malls, theme parks (...) and gated communities. With eloquence and insight, Merchant shows how the drive to conquer nature and to explore and settle the globe, springs from this utopian pastoral impulse throughout Western history. Time and again, human manipulation of the environment is our downfall: Eden is achieved by fencing off pristine beauty in national parks and wildlife preserves, while leaving the majority of the earth in ruins. Challenging both narratives, Merchant argues that the green veneer of city-park conservation has become a cover for the corruption of the earth and the neglect of its environment. Reinventing Eden is a bold new way to think about the earth that includes green political parties, sustainable development and a partnership between humans and earth that is nothing short of an ecological revolution. (shrink)
Bringing together a group of established and emergent Jonson scholars, this volume reacts to major advances in thinking about the writer and his canon of works. The study is divided into two distinct parts: the first considers the Jonsonian career and output from biographical, critical, and performance-based angles; the second looks at cultural and historical contexts building on rich interdisciplinary work. Social historians work alongside literary critics to provide a diverse and varied account of Jonson. These are less standard surveys (...) of the field than vibrant interventions into current critical debates. The short-essay format of the collection seeks less to harmonize and homogenize than to raise awareness of new avenues of research on Jonson, including studies informed by book history, cultural geography, the law and legal discourse, the history of science and interests in material culture. (shrink)
An examination of the Scientific Revolution that shows how the mechanistic world view of modern science has sanctioned the exploitation of nature, unrestrained commercial expansion, and a new socioeconomic order that subordinates women.
In March of 2012, following a robust activist campaign, Arysta LifeScience withdrew the soil fumigant methyl iodide from the US market, just a little over a year after it had finally been registered for use in California. As a major part of the campaign against registration of the chemical, over 53,000 people, ostensibly acting as citizens rather than consumers, wrote public comments contesting the use of the chemical for its high toxicity. Although these comments had marginal impact on the outcome (...) of the case, these comments are of interest for what they say about public action at a time when efforts to address food and agricultural issues have been dominated by “voting with your fork.” Based on a qualitative textual analysis of approximately 3500 representative comments made available to us, we show that many of those taking action did not abandon consumer subjectivities associated with neoliberal governmentality. By threatening “personal boycotts,” some were acting in their capacity as individual consumers; in invoking their own and their children’s health many more were also acting on behalf of consumers, despite that the chemical in question is applied before strawberries are planted and thus leaves no residues. The emphasis that letter writers gave to their own bodies reinforces the idea that some bodies count more than others and thus reveals a biopolitical sorting. Having consumer lives matter is consequential in light of evidence that consumer concern about pesticides has historically led to formulations and regulations more protective of consumers than workers and neighbors. (shrink)
It is currently common to conceive of the classic methodological individualism–holism debate in level terms. Accordingly, the dispute is taken to concern the proper level of explanations in the social sciences. In this paper, I argue that the debate is not apt to be characterized in level terms. The reason is that widely adopted notions of individualist explanations do not qualify as individual-level explanations because they span multiple levels. I defend this claim relative to supervenience, emergence, and other accounts of (...) the social world as levelled. Moreover, I discuss the consequences of this finding for the ongoing methodological individualism–holism debate. (shrink)
Die pseudoplatonischen Dialoge Ã_ber die Tugend und Alkyon Hubertus Neuhausen: Der pseudo-platonische Alkibiades II und die sokratischen Alkibiadesdialoge Rosa Maria Piccione: Gli Pseudoplatonica nella tradizione dei florilegi Christopher ...
The concept of recognition, and its relationship to the way we theorise identity and justice, has emerged as part of an important debate in contemporary political and social theory. With contributions from Nancy Fraser and international commentators, this new collection examines key theoretical and practical problems of 'recognition' in politics. Beyond important normative issues in social theory, such as how cultural claims to difference may be justly accommodated in liberal polities, it addresses a range of practical problems in which a (...) politics of recognition approach casts new light on old conflicts and tensions, examining these problems within the context of processes of globalisation and increasing cultural diversity. Organised into three sections, Recognition in Politics: Theory, Policy and Practice analyses new theoretical directions, the challenges of managing multicultural societies, and social policy case studies. Featuring a recent paper by Professor Nancy Fraser based on her 2004 Spinoza Lecture, this collection examines core issues in contemporary debates over recognition, extending these debates in new and significant ways. The contributors extend the literature on recognition by applying the theory to practical, contemporary political problems. These papers reveal the capacity of the recognition paradigm to generate new insights into political problems, but also the limitations of the concept's theoretical purview. Together, these commentaries offer an invaluable road map to the most recent scholarship on recognition. (shrink)
This book addresses the topic of personhood—who is a “person” or “human,” and what rights or dignities does that include—as it has been addressed through the lens of science fiction. Chapters include discussions of consciousness and the soul, artificial intelligence, dehumanization and othering, and free will. Classic and modern sci-fi texts are engaged, as well as film and television. This book argues that science fiction allows us to examine the profound question of personhood through its speculative and imaginative nature, highlighting (...) issues that are already visible in our present world. (shrink)
In this volume, a diverse group of world experts in personality assessment showcase a range of different viewpoints on response distortion. Contributors consider what it means to "fake" a personality assessment, why and how people try to obtain particular scores on personality tests, and what types of tests people can successfully manipulate. The authors present and discuss the usefulness of a range of traditional and cutting-edge methods for detecting and controlling the practice of faking. These methods include social desirability scales, (...) warnings, affective neutralization, unidimensional and multidimensional pairwise preferences, decision trees, linguistic analysis, situational measures, and methods based on item response theory. The wide range of viewpoints presented in this book are then summarized, synthesized, and evaluated. The authors make practical recommendations and suggest areas for future research. Anyone who wonders whether people exaggerate or lie outright on personality tests -- or questions what psychologists can and should do about it -- will find in this book stimulating questions and useful answers. (shrink)
Report on a symposium “Analytical Philosophy of Science today”, July 23–24, 1995, in Beijing. The symposium demonstrates the actual interest and familiarity of Chinese researchers with Western philosophy of science and especially with analytical philosophizing. Main topics were diagnoses of the actual state of the art, discussion and critique of some classics and classical analytical conceptions, application of analytical thinking on hermeneutical problems, and its possible social function.
This book undermines privacy scepticism, proving a strong theoretical foundation for many of our everyday and legal privacy claims. Inness argues that intimacy is the core of privacy, including privacy appeals in tort and constitutional law. She explores the myriad of debates and puts forth an intimacy and control-based account of privacy which escapes these criticisms.
Attention is essential to the life of the mind, a central topic in cognitive science, neuroscience, and psychology. Traditional debates in philosophy stand to benefit from greater understanding of the phenomenon, whether on the nature of the self, the foundation of knowledge, the natural basis of consciousness, or the origins of action and responsibility. This book is at the crossroads of philosophy of mind and cognitive science, offering a new theoretical stance on the concept of attention and how it intersects (...) with other functions of the mind, such as perception, consciousness, and action. It presents attention as directed by a subject, essential for perception, but not consciousness or action. By taking seriously the existence of a subject it stands against current trends in philosophy and cognitive science. This book offers an account of the subject and its role in attention that will both help motivate a subject-centered account and avoid some of the common criticisms regarding its existence. It engages with work by many philosophers, psychologists, and neuroscientists, including Block, Campbell, Dickie, Husserl, James, Koch, Mack and Rock, Merleau-Ponty, Treisman, and Wu. (shrink)
In the first edition of Radical Ecology --the now classic examination major philosophical, ethical, scientific, and economic roots of environmental problems--Carolyn Merchant responded to the profound awareness of environmental crisis which prevailed in the closing decade of the twentieth century. In this provocative and readable study, Merchant examined the ways that radical ecologists can transform science and society in order to sustain life on this planet. Now in this second edition, Merchant continues to emphasize how laws, regulations and scientific (...) research alone cannot reverse the spread of pollution or restore our dwindling resources. Merchant argues that in order to maintain a livable world, we must formulate new social, economic, scientific, and spiritual approaches that will fundamentally transform human relationships with nature. She analyzes the revolutionary ideas of visionary ecologists for a new economy, society, science, and religion, and examines their efforts to bring environmental problems to the attention of the public. This new edition features a new Introduction from the author, a thorough updating of chapters, and two entirely new chapters on recent global movements and globalization and the environment. It is a timely update that will give students everything they need to know on the most recent philosophical positions and social movements that characterize the radical ecology spectrum. (shrink)
Let me make it clear from the outset that my main point is not either of the following: one, that there should be more women economists and research on “women's issues”, or two, that women as a class do, or should do, economics in a manner different from men. My argument is different and has to do with trying to gain an understanding of how a certain way of thinking about gender and a certain way of thinking about economics have (...) become intertwined through metaphor – with detrimental results – and how a richer conception of human understanding and human identity could broaden and improve the field of economics for both female and male practitioners. (shrink)
Secularism is usually thought to contain the project of self-deification, in which humans attack God’s authority in order to take his place, freed from all constraints. Julie E. Cooper overturns this conception through an incisive analysis of the early modern justifications for secular politics. While she agrees that secularism is a means of empowerment, she argues that we have misunderstood the sources of secular empowerment and the kinds of strength to which it aspires. Contemporary understandings of secularism, Cooper contends, (...) have been shaped by a limited understanding of it as a shift from vulnerability to power. But the works of the foundational thinkers of secularism tell a different story. Analyzing the writings of Hobbes, Spinoza, and Rousseau at the moment of secularity’s inception, she shows that all three understood that acknowledging one’s limitations was a condition of successful self-rule. And while all three invited humans to collectively build and sustain a political world, their invitations did not amount to self-deification. Cooper establishes that secular politics as originally conceived does not require a choice between power and vulnerability. Rather, it challenges us—today as then—to reconcile them both as essential components of our humanity. (shrink)
In the last years, starting from the study of the foundations of human rights, Pier Cesare Bori has focused his research on the exegesis of Genesis 1, 26-28, according to which man is created in the image of God. In the Christian framework the imago Dei has led to different interpretations: a charismatic and eschatological, an ontological and a functional one. To solve the contradictions between these different exegesis of imago Dei Bori has suggested to consider a larger context, looking (...) not only at the Christian tradition, but also at the other monotheisms, cultures and religions. The proceedings here presented are the result of this attempt to develop new approaches to the study of the topic of imago Dei. It has been undertaken by an international group of scholars from different research fields (history, theology, hermeneutics, philosophy, exegesis) during a few days of scientific exchange and dialogue. (shrink)
Reporting on the 7th International Congress of Logic, Methodology, and Philosophy of Science, first the main topics and some organisational aspects of the congress are presented; the main part of the report focuses on recent developments in Philosophical Logic , in particular the theory of so-called generalized quantifiers as presented at the congress. In addition, some background information on logical language analysis, its possible applications and consequences is provided.
This research replicates Weber's 1995 study of a large financial services firm that found that ethical subclimates exist within multi-departmental organizations, are influenced by the function of the department and the stakeholders served, and are relatively stable over time. Relying upon theoretical models developed by Thompson (1967) and Victor and Cullen (1998), hypotheses are developed that predict the ethical subclimate decision-making dimensions and type for diverse departments within a large steel manufacturing firm and that these ethical subclimate types will be (...) stable across the two periods of time when the data were collected. Employees were surveyed in 1995 and again in 1999 using Victor and Cullen's Ethical Climate Questionnaire. Response rates of 88 and 94 percent were achieved. Contrary to Weber's findings, our results imply that, in both samples, ethical subclimates may be determined by the strength of an organization's overall ethical climate, rather than the department's function. However, we did find support for Weber's earlier contention that these subclimates are relatively stable. Our results also suggest that differences may exist across industries, that is when comparing a large steel manufacturer, as we did in our study, with a large financial services organization, as Weber did in his 1995 study. (shrink)
We present several quantitative analyses of the prevalence and visibility of women in moral, political, and social philosophy, compared to other areas of philosophy, and how the situation has changed over time. Measures include faculty lists from the Philosophical Gourmet Report, PhD job placement data from the Academic Placement Data and Analysis project, the National Science Foundation's Survey of Earned Doctorates, conference programs of the American Philosophical Association, authorship in elite philosophy journals, citation in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, and (...) extended discussion in abstracts from the Philosopher's Index. Our data strongly support three conclusions: (1) Gender disparity remains large in mainstream Anglophone philosophy; (2) ethics, construed broadly to include social and political philosophy, is closer to gender parity than are other fields in philosophy; and (3) women's involvement in philosophy has increased since the 1970s. However, by most measures, women's involvement and visibility in mainstream Anglophone philosophy has increased only slowly; and by some measures there has been virtually no gain since the 1990s. We find mixed evidence on the question of whether gender disparity is even more pronounced at the highest level of visibility or prestige than at more moderate levels of visibility or prestige. -/- . (shrink)
Abstract: In this study, we test the interactive effect on ethical decision-making of (1) personal characteristics, and (2) personal expectancies based on perceptions of organizational rewards and punishments. Personal characteristics studied were cognitive moral development and belief in a just world. Using an in-basket simulation, we found that exposure to reward system information influenced managers’ outcome expectancies. Further, outcome expectancies and belief in a just world interacted with managers’ cognitive moral development to influence managers’ ethical decision-making. In particular, low-cognitive moral (...) development managers who expected that their organization condoned unethical behavior made less ethical decisions while high cognitive moral development managers became more ethical in this environment. Low cognitive moral development managers also behaved less ethically when their belief in a just world was high. (shrink)
Disgust is a strong aversion, yet paradoxically it can constitute an appreciative aesthetic response to works of art. Artistic disgust can be funny, profound, sorrowful, or gross. This book examines numerous examples of disgust as it is aroused by art and offers a set of explanations for its aesthetic appeal.
Taste, perhaps the most intimate of the five senses, has traditionally been considered beneath the concern of philosophy, too bound to the body, too personal and idiosyncratic. Yet, in addition to providing physical pleasure, eating and drinking bear symbolic and aesthetic value in human experience, and they continually inspire writers and artists. In Making Sense of Taste, Carolyn Korsmeyer explains how taste came to occupy so low a place in the hierarchy of senses and why it is deserving of (...) greater philosophical respect and attention. Korsmeyer begins with the Greek thinkers who classified taste as an inferior, bodily sense; she then traces the parallels between notions of aesthetic and gustatory taste that were explored in the formation of modern aesthetic theories. She presents scientific views of how taste actually works and identifies multiple components of taste experiences. Turning to taste's objects—food and drink—she looks at the different meanings they convey in art and literature as well as in ordinary human life and proposes an approach to the aesthetic value of taste that recognizes the representational and expressive roles of food. Korsmeyer's consideration of art encompasses works that employ food in contexts sacred and profane, that seek to whet the appetite and to keep it at bay; her selection of literary vignettes ranges from narratives of macabre devouring to stories of communities forged by shared eating. (shrink)
The topic of professionalism has dominated the content of major academic medicine publications during the past decade and continues to do so. The message of this current wave of professionalism is that medical educators need to be more attentive to the moral sensibilities of trainees, to their interpersonal and affective dimensions, and to their social conscience, all to the end of skilled, humanistic physicians. Urgent calls to address professionalism from such groups as the Association of American Medical Colleges, the American (...) Board of Internal Medicine, and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, among others. In fact, at the 2004 annual meeting of the AAMC six separate presentations addressed professionalism with such titles as "Evaluating Humanism and Professionalism," Professionalism: Expectation, Education, Evaluation," or "Toward Assessing Professional Behaviors of Medical Students through Peer Observations". Professionalism, then, has become part of the current academic medicine parlance, used by administrators, clinical faculty, residency programs, and professional organizations with an expectation of shared meanings and goals. All of these stakeholders focus on what has become a consistent list of attributes deemed to be the essence of professionalism, which usually include variations on altruism, duty, excellence, honor and integrity, accountability, and respect. In fact, most of the scholarly work to date has been listing, describing, decrying, and measuring/evaluating it. In this collection of essays, we don’t argue with these attributes. Instead, we ask questions of the discourse from which they arise, how the specialized language of academic medicine disciplines has defined, organized, contained, and made seemingly immutable a group of attitudes, values, and behaviors subsumed under the label "professional" or "professionalism." This collection aims to be a critical text, one that questions the profession’s beliefs about the nature of its work and how such beliefs are enacted in medical education, particularly as they fuel the professionalism discourse. In addition, we will scrutinize how the discourse is enacted in both the formal and hidden curriculum, and in the larger medical environment. (shrink)
To scholars of ancient philosophy, theoria denotes abstract thinking, with both Plato and Aristotle employing the term to signify philosophical contemplation. Yet it is surprising for some to find an earlier, traditional meaning referring to travel to festivals and shrines. In an attempt to dissolve the problem of equivocal reference, Julie Ward's book seeks to illuminate the nature of traditional theoria as ancient festival-attendance as well as the philosophical account developed in Plato and Aristotle. First, she examines the traditional (...) use referring to periodic festivals, including their complex social and political arrangements, then she considers the subsequent use by Plato and Aristotle. Broadly speaking, she discerns a common thread running throughout both uses: namely, the notion of having a visual experience of the sacred or divine. Thus her book aims to illuminate the nature of philosophical theoria described by Plato and Aristotle in light of traditional, festival theoria. (shrink)
Major terrorist events, such as the recent attacks in Ankara, Sinai, and Paris, can have profound effects on a nation’s values, attitudes, and prejudices. Yet psychological evidence testing the impact of such events via data collected immediately before and after an attack is understandably rare. In the present research, we tested the independent and joint effects of threat and political ideology on endorsement of moral foundations and prejudices among two nationally representative samples about 6 weeks before and 1 month after (...) the London bombings. After the bombings, there was greater endorsement of the in-group foundation, lower endorsement of the fairness-reciprocity foundation, and stronger prejudices toward Muslims and immigrants. The differences in both the endorsement of the foundations and the prejudices were larger among people with a liberal orientation than among those with a conservative orientation. Furthermore, the changes in endorsement of moral foundations among liberals explained their increases in prejudice. The results highlight the value of psychological theory and research for understanding societal changes in attitudes and prejudices after major terrorist events. (shrink)
Fundamental terms in the field of ecology are ambiguous, with multiple meanings associated with them. While this could lead to confusion, discord, or even tests that violate core assumptions of a given theory or model, this ambiguity could also be a feature that allows for new knowledge creation through the interconnected nature of concepts. We approached this debate from a quantitative perspective, and investigated the cost of ambiguity related to definitions of ecological units in ecology related to the general term (...) “community.” We did a meta-analysis of tests associated with two bodies of literature, Hubbell’s unified neutral theory of biodiversity and biogeography and Diamond’s assembly rules, that rely on a specific ecological unit that assumes that species are existing within a local area and that they have overlapping resource needs. We predicted that if ambiguous terminology is widespread, then researchers will have tested them with many different ecological units, that in addition some of these ecological units will violate the core assumptions of the theory, and finally that the overall level of support for a theory will be stronger if appropriate ecological units were used. We found that indeed multiple different ecological units were used in the literature to test both theories, with 65 percent appropriate ecological units for neutral theory tests, and only 6 percent for assembly rule tests. Finally, there was some evidence that the support for a theory depended on whether appropriate ecological units were used for neutral tests, but there was not enough data for the assembly rule tests. These results thus show that ambiguous terminology in ecology is having measurable effects on research and is not of solely philosophical concern. We advocate that authors be explicit in their writing and outline core assumptions of theories, that researchers apply these consistently in their tests, and that readers be attentive to what is written and cognizant of their potential biases. (shrink)