Feelings of gratitude toward the natural environment are problematic because gratitude seems to be an appropriate response to someone’s intentional decision to benefit us, and ecosystems that sustain human life do not choose to do so. In accordance with one defense of the rationality and appropriateness of gratitude toward nature, intentional action can be regarded as not being a necessary condition for feelings of gratitude. Instead, gratitude toward an entity can be considered both rational and appropriate when (1) that entity (...) is the source of a valuable and unearned benefit and (2) the benefit did not result from some accidental and/or regrettable feature of that entity’s character. According to this analysis, we can provide a rational ground for gratitude to particular ecosystems by citing the valuable and unearned benefits that we receive from those systems and by demonstrating that these benefits result from elements within the ecosystems that are neither regrettable nor accidental. (shrink)
Seventeen philosophical thinkers ask: What is creativity? What are the criteria of creativity? Should we assign logical priority to creative persons, processes, or products? How do various forms of creativity relate to different domains of human activity?
In my thesis I develop a theory of our mental, physiological and emotional involvement with motion pictures that accounts for the distinct role of perception in our cinematic experiences. In particular, I present a resemblance view of cinematic perception and depiction that begins with an analysis of motion picture screenings as events in the world to which audience members share perceptual access and to which we can attribute complex visual and auditory properties. By understanding the precise nature of these properties (...) and by understanding the mind's rich and dynamic relationship to visual and auditory stimuli, we can meet the demand of explaining the essential contribution of perception to our cinematic experiences. This positive theory is introduced through a philosophical and empirical critique of the work of several contemporary "cognitivist" film theorists who can been faulted for falling into the traps of traditional illusion accounts, failing to account for the perceptual nature of our film experiences, or incorrectly characterizing the nature of our perceptual relationship to cinematic content. (shrink)