R. Kevin Hill argues that while Walsh is correct in urging caution regarding Rand's polemical characterizations of Kant, interpreting her charitably reveals surprising insights into the underlying structure of Kant's thought. Rand's objections to Kant's epistemology, psychology and metaphysics are truer to Kant's intentions than revisionist attempts to save him from himself. Her objections to Kantian ethics contain promising critiques of both Kant's rational reconstructive-methodology and his misuse of the concept of agent-neutral reasons. Lastly, though she paints too (...) broadly in her account of Kant's influence, two questionable tendencies in contemporary thought are traceable to him. (shrink)
The spacing effect is among the most widely replicated empirical phenomena in the learning sciences, and its relevance to education and training is readily apparent. Yet successful applications of spacing effect research to education and training is rare. Computational modeling can provide the crucial link between a century of accumulated experimental data on the spacing effect and the emerging interest in using that research to enable adaptive instruction. In this paper, we review relevant literature and identify 10 criteria for rigorously (...) evaluating computational models of the spacing effect. Five relate to evaluating the theoretic adequacy of a model, and five relate to evaluating its application potential. We use these criteria to evaluate a novel computational model of the spacing effect called the Predictive Performance Equation. Predictive Performance Equation combines elements of earlier models of learning and memory including the General Performance Equation, Adaptive Control of Thought—Rational, and the New Theory of Disuse, giving rise to a novel computational account of the spacing effect that performs favorably across the complete sets of theoretic and applied criteria. We implemented two other previously published computational models of the spacing effect and compare them to PPE using the theoretic and applied criteria as guides. (shrink)
To function well in an unpredictable environment using unreliable components, a system must have a high degree of robustness. Robustness is fundamental to biological systems and is an objective in the design of engineered systems such as airplane engines and buildings. Cognitive systems, like biological and engineered systems, exist within variable environments. This raises the question, how do cognitive systems achieve similarly high degrees of robustness? The aim of this study was to identify a set of mechanisms that enhance robustness (...) in cognitive systems. We identify three mechanisms that enhance robustness in biological and engineered systems: system control, redundancy, and adaptability. After surveying the psychological literature for evidence of these mechanisms, we provide simulations illustrating how each contributes to robust cognition in a different psychological domain: psychomotor vigilance, semantic memory, and strategy selection. These simulations highlight features of a mathematical approach for quantifying robustness, and they provide concrete examples of mechanisms for robust cognition. (shrink)
A comprehensive treatment of the concept of causation in evolutionary biology that makes clear its central role in both historical and contemporary debates. Most scientific explanations are causal. This is certainly the case in evolutionary biology, which seeks to explain the diversity of life and the adaptive fit between organisms and their surroundings. The nature of causation in evolutionary biology, however, is contentious. How causation is understood shapes the structure of evolutionary theory, and historical and contemporary debates in evolutionary biology (...) have revolved around the nature of causation. Despite its centrality, and differing views on the subject, the major conceptual issues regarding the nature of causation in evolutionary biology are rarely addressed. This volume fills the gap, bringing together biologists and philosophers to offer a comprehensive, interdisciplinary treatment of evolutionary causation. Contributors first address biological motivations for rethinking evolutionary causation, considering the ways in which development, extra-genetic inheritance, and niche construction challenge notions of cause and process in evolution, and describing how alternative representations of evolutionary causation can shed light on a range of evolutionary problems. Contributors then analyze evolutionary causation from a philosophical perspective, considering such topics as causal entanglement, the commingling of organism and environment, and the relationship between causation and information. Contributors John A. Baker, Lynn Chiu, David I. Dayan, Renée A. Duckworth, Marcus W Feldman, Susan A. Foster, Melissa A. Graham, Heikki Helanterä, Kevin N. Laland, Armin P. Moczek, John Odling-Smee, Jun Otsuka, Massimo Pigliucci, Arnaud Pocheville, Arlin Stoltzfus, Karola Stotz, Sonia E. Sultan, Christoph Thies, Tobias Uller, Denis M. Walsh, Richard A. Watson. (shrink)
Gleeson, Damian John In 1924, after a hiatus of a decade, the Australasian Catholic Record was re-established under the driving force of Monsignor John Joseph Nevin, the then vice-president of St Patrick's College, Manly. Mgr Nevin was ACR's principal editor up until 1937 and with the exception of a trip to Ireland and Europe in 1927, he contributed articles and answered questions on topics ranging across canon law, marriage, and moral theology in virtually every quarterly issue of ACR for more (...) than two decades. At Manly, he educated thousands of seminarians for dioceses across New South Wales and beyond, and was the college's president from 1929 to 1942. As such, Mgr Nevin was probably the most formidable Catholic clerical academic in New South Wales in the interwar period, yet we know little of this prodigious writer and intellectual who was a key adviser, not just to the Sydney hierarchy, but to a wide range of bishops. Apart from Dr KevinWalsh's splendid history of St Patrick's College, Manly, church historians have not sought to consider the significant career of Mgr Nevin and his influence on several generations of clergy and bishops. (shrink)
We argue that uncomputability and classical scepticism are both re ections of inductive underdetermination, so that Church's thesis and Hume's problem ought to receive equal emphasis in a balanced approach to the philosophy of induction. As an illustration of such an approach, we investigate how uncomputable the predictions of a hypothesis can be if the hypothesis is to be reliably investigated by a computable scienti c method.
Philosophical logicians proposing theories of rational belief revision have had little to say about whether their proposals assist or impede the agent's ability to reliably arrive at the truth as his beliefs change through time. On the other hand, reliability is the central concern of formal learning theory. In this paper we investigate the belief revision theory of Alchourron, Gardenfors and Makinson from a learning theoretic point of view.
Discussion of J. Kevin O’Regan’s “Why Red Doesn’t Sound Like a Bell: Understanding the Feel of Consciousness” Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-20 DOI 10.1007/s13164-012-0090-7 Authors J. Kevin O’Regan, Laboratoire Psychologie de la Perception, CNRS - Université Paris Descartes, Centre Biomédical des Saints Pères, 45 rue des Sts Pères, 75270 Paris cedex 06, France Ned Block, Departments of Philosophy, Psychology and Center for Neural Science, New York University, 5 Washington Place, New York, NY 10003, USA Journal Review of (...) Philosophy and Psychology Online ISSN 1878-5166 Print ISSN 1878-5158. (shrink)
This book is presumably a collection of essays delivered at a conference, though it's hard to say. There is no cover description and the editors' introduction, where this information might have been found, is missing from the volume (at least from my copy) in spite of being listed in the table of contents. A curious editorial slip. In fact, from an editorial perspective this book is a disaster. Not only is the format reminiscent of those camera ready volumes that jammed (...) our libraries in the late Eighties, when word processors began to spread and people started using them to produce entire books without knowing how to handle line spacing and hyphenation -- not to mention orphans and widows, footnotes, tabs, apostrophes, etc. There are also lots of typos, English infelicities, punctuation disorders. Obviously nobody checked the page proofs. There are even formulas that were not properly converted from the original files and have been printed with the infamous boxes in place of the logical symbols. Publishing academic books in analytic philosophy is becoming increasingly difficult and not every publisher can afford serious copy editing. But charging 74 euros for such a poorly manufactured item is appalling. (shrink)
This book is a tribute to Kevin Kelly, who has been one of the most influential British theologians for a number of decades. On its own merits, however, it is groundbreaking collection of essays on key themes, issues and concepts in contemporary moral theology and Christian ethics. The focus is on perspectives to inform moral debate and discernment in the future. The main themes covered are shown in the list of contents below. Several of the of the contributors are (...) from the United States, three others live and work in Continental Europe and the rest are from various parts of the British Isles. Many of the authors are among the best known in their fields on both sides of the Atlantic. (shrink)
Disorder and suffering are increasing significantly in our society. Violent crime, unemployment, escape through drug-taking are all on the increase. It is apparent, also, that much of this disorder and suffering, and the anxiety it fosters, is rooted in science and its technological off-spring. The un-employment produced by a micro-technology is only one small example. It is also apparent that one of the principal foundation stones for the scientific enterprise was Christianity.
Gordon Kaufman is a theologian who wrestles with essential theological issues. In a recent amplification of his position, An Essay on Theological Method , 1 he makes an honest attempt to describe the method by which a self-critical theologian might work. This paper sets out a critique of the method Kaufman proposes and from that delineates a path which theologians might choose to follow.
J. S. Mill's role as a transitional figure between classical and egalitarian liberalism can be partly explained by developments in his often unappreciated economic views. Specifically, I argue that Mill's separation of economic production and distribution had an important effect on his political theory. Mill made two distinctions between economic production and the distribution of wealth. I argue that these separations helped lead Mill to abandon the wages-fund doctrine and adopt a more favorable view of organized labor. I also show (...) how Mill's developments impacted later philosophers, economists, and historians. Understanding the relationship between Mill's political theory and economic theory does not only matter for Mill scholarship, however. Contemporary philosophers often ignore the economic views of their predecessors. I argue that paying insufficient attention to historical political philosophers' economic ideas obscures significant motivations for their political views. (shrink)
The Rawlsian texts appear not to be consistent with regard to the status of the right of freedom of association. Interestingly, Rawls's early work omits mention of freedom of association as among the basic liberties, but in his later work he explicitly includes freedom of association as among the basic liberties. However, freedom of association would appear to have an economic component as well. If one turns to such “private ordering”, we find a similar ambiguity in the Rawlsian texts, as (...) well as sharp divisions in the contemporary literature on Rawlsianism. This ambiguity has engendered widespread confusion over the scope of the two principles of justice—leading to the contemporary dispute over the breadth of what Rawls calls the “basic structure” and the question of whether the principles of justice are properly understood to govern private ordering. There is significant disagreement over the breadth of Rawls's basic structure—one aspect is whether the principles of justice apply to the private law. In a controversial passage in Political Liberalism Rawls addresses this question. This passage has, however, led commentators to reach divergent conclusions. We argue that this disagreement is explained by an instructive confusion in the passage over the distinction between what we characterize as “pre-institutional” and “post-institutional” freedom. The passage, we argue, illicitly shifts from invoking the post-institutional sense of “freedom” to the pre-institutional sense, thereby causing significant though understandable disagreement. Rawls's lapse into the pre-institutional conception of “freedom” provides interpretive grounds for the narrow understanding of the basic structure. If Rawls, however, had invoked the sense of “freedom” to which he is entitled at this stage of his theory—the post-institutional conception—such disagreement need not have arisen. (shrink)
Model theory is an important area of mathematical logic which has deep philosophical roots, many philosophical applications, and great philosophical interest in itself. The aim of this book is to introduce, organise, survey, and develop these connections between philosophy and model theory, for the benefit of philosophers and logicians alike.
Cicero's philosophical works are now exciting renewed interest, in part because he provides vital evidence of the views of the Greek philosophers of the Hellenistic age, and partly because of the light he casts on the intellectual life of first century Rome. This edition uses the 1997 Clarendon text by the acclaimed translator P.G. Walsh.
Kevin Scharp proposes an original theory of the nature and logic of truth on which truth is an inconsistent concept that should be replaced for certain theoretical purposes. He argues that truth is best understood as an inconsistent concept, and proposes a detailed theory of inconsistent concepts that can be applied to the case of truth. Truth also happens to be a useful concept, but its inconsistency inhibits its utility; as such, it should be replaced with consistent concepts that (...) can do truth's job without giving rise to paradoxes. To this end, Scharp offers a pair of replacements, which he dubs ascending truth and descending truth, along with an axiomatic theory of them and a new kind of possible-worlds semantics for this theory. He goes to develop Davidson's idea that truth is best understood as the core of a measurement system for rational phenomena, and offers a semantic theory that treats truth predicates as assessment-sensitive and solves the problems posed by the liar and other paradoxes. (shrink)
Arendt Contra Sociology re-assesses the relationship between Hannah Arendt's work and the theoretical foundations of sociology, bringing her insights to bear on key themes within contemporary theoretical sociology. Departing from the view of Arendt as a political theorist who sought to rescue politics from society, and political theory from the social sciences, this book re-examines her distinctions between labour, fabrication and action as a theory of the fundamental ontology of human societies, revisiting her criticism of the tendency of many sociological (...) paradigms to conflate the activity of fabrication with that of action. (shrink)
Ignorance, Irony and Knowledge in Plato shows that Socratic ignorance-knowing that you don't know-is central to Plato's philosophy, especially in his use of dialogue and his theory of knowledge. Plato's philosophical career can be understood as a progressive deepening of his appreciation of Socratic ignorance and its rich implications.
The role of values in scientific research has become an important topic of discussion in both scholarly and popular debates. Pundits across the political spectrum worry that research on topics like climate change, evolutionary theory, vaccine safety, and genetically modified foods has become overly politicized. At the same time, it is clear that values play an important role in science by limiting unethical forms of research and by deciding what areas of research have the greatest relevance for society. Deciding how (...) to distinguish legitimate and illegitimate influences of values in scientific research is a matter of vital importance.Recently, philosophers of science have written a great deal on this topic, but most of their work has been directed toward a scholarly audience. This book makes the contemporary philosophical literature on science and values accessible to a wide readership. It examines case studies from a variety of research areas, including climate science, anthropology, chemical risk assessment, ecology, neurobiology, biomedical research, and agriculture. These cases show that values have necessary roles to play in identifying research topics, choosing research questions, determining the aims of inquiry, responding to uncertainty, and deciding how to communicate information. Kevin Elliott focuses not just on describing roles for values but also on determining when their influences are actually appropriate. He emphasizes several conditions for incorporating values in a legitimate fashion, and highlights multiple strategies for fostering engagement between stakeholders so that value influences can be subjected to careful and critical scrutiny. (shrink)
First published in 2001, Causality in Macroeconomics addresses the long-standing problems of causality while taking macroeconomics seriously. The practical concerns of the macroeconomist and abstract concerns of the philosopher inform each other. Grounded in pragmatic realism, the book rejects the popular idea that macroeconomics requires microfoundations, and argues that the macroeconomy is a set of structures that are best analyzed causally. Ideas originally due to Herbert Simon and the Cowles Commission are refined and generalized to non-linear systems, particularly to the (...) non-linear systems with cross-equation restrictions that are ubiquitous in modern macroeconomic models with rational expectations. These ideas help to clarify philosophical as well as economic issues. The structural approach to causality is then used to evaluate more familiar approaches to causality due to Granger, LeRoy and Glymour, Spirtes, Scheines and Kelly, as well as vector autoregressions, the Lucas critique, and the exogeneity concepts of Engle, Hendry and Richard. (shrink)
_Existentialism: An Introduction_ provides an accessible and scholarly introduction to the core ideas of the existentialist tradition. Kevin Aho draws on a wide range of existentialist thinkers in chapters centering on the key themes of freedom, being-in-the-world, alienation, nihilism, anxiety and authenticity. He also addresses important but often overlooked issues in the canon of existentialism, with discussions devoted to the role of embodiment, the movement’s contribution to ethics, politics, and environmental and comparative philosophies, as well as its influence on (...) contemporary psychiatry and psychotherapy. The enduring relevance of existentialism is shown by applying existentialist ideas to contemporary philosophical discussions of interest to a wide audience. The book covers secular thinkers such as Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Nietzsche, Sartre, Camus, and Beauvoir as well as religious authors, such as Buber, Dostoevsky, Marcel, and Kierkegaard. In this engaging and accessible text Aho shows why existentialism cannot be easily dismissed as a moribund or outdated movement. In the aftermath of 'God’s death', existentialist philosophy engages questions with lasting philosophical significance, questions such as 'Who am I?' and 'How should I live?' By showing how existentialism offers insight into what it means to be human, the author illuminates existentialism’s enduring value. _Existentialism: An Introduction_ provides the ideal introduction for upper level students and anyone interested in knowing more about one of the most vibrant and important areas of philosophy today. (shrink)
Phenomenal Conservatism (the view that an appearance that p gives one prima facie justification for believing that p) is a promising, and popular, internalist theory of epistemic justification. Despite its popularity, it faces numerous objections and challenges. For instance, epistemologists have argued that Phenomenal Conservatism is incompatible with Bayesianism, is afflicted by bootstrapping and cognitive penetration problems, does not guarantee that epistemic justification is a stable property, does not provide an account of defeat, and is not a complete theory of (...) epistemic justification. This book shows that Phenomenal Conservatism is actually immune to some of these problems, though not all of them. Accordingly, it explores the prospects of integrating Phenomenal Conservatism with Explanationism (the view that epistemic justification is a matter of explanatory relations between one’s evidence and propositions supported by that evidence). The resulting theory, Phenomenal Explanationism, has advantages over Phenomenal Conservatism and Explanationism taken on their own. Phenomenal Explanationism is a highly unified, comprehensive internalist theory of epistemic justification that delivers on the promises of Phenomenal Conservatism while avoiding its pitfalls. (shrink)
In _Marx at the Margins_, Kevin Anderson uncovers a variety of extensive but neglected texts by the well-known political economist which cast what we thought we knew about his work in a startlingly different light. Analyzing a variety of Marx’s writings, including journalistic work written for the _New York Tribune_, Anderson presents us with a Marx quite at odds with our conventional interpretations. Rather than providing us with an account of Marx as an exclusively class-based thinker, Anderson here offers (...) a portrait of Marx for the twenty-first century: a global theorist whose social critique was sensitive to the varieties of human social and historical development, including not just class, but nationalism, race, and ethnicity, as well. _Marx at the Margins _ultimately argues that alongside his overarching critique of capital, Marx created a theory of history that was multi-layered and not easily reduced to a single model of development or revolution. Through highly-informed readings on work ranging from Marx’s unpublished 1879–82 notebooks to his passionate writings about the antislavery cause in the United States, this volume delivers a groundbreaking and canon-changing vision of Karl Marx that is sure to provoke lively debate in Marxist scholarship and beyond. (shrink)
Denis Walsh has written a striking new defense in this journal of the statisticalist (i.e., noncausalist) position regarding the forces of evolution. I defend the causalist view against his new objections. I argue that the heart of the issue lies in the nature of nonadditive causation. Detailed consideration of that turns out to defuse Walsh’s ‘description‐dependence’ critique of causalism. Nevertheless, the critique does suggest a basis for reconciliation between the two competing views. *Received December 2009; revised December 2009. (...) †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, 599 Lucas Hall, One University Boulevard, University of Missouri, St. Louis, MO 63121; e‐mail: [email protected] (shrink)
In the eyes of many, liberalism requires the aggressive secularization of social institutions, especially public media and public schools. The unfortunate result is that many Americans have become alienated from the liberal tradition because they believe it threatens their most sacred forms of life. This was not always the case: in American history, the relation between liberalism and religion has often been one of mutual respect and support. In Liberal Politics and Public Faith: Beyond Separation , Kevin Vallier attempts (...) to reestablish mutual respect by developing a liberal political theory that avoids the standard liberal hostility to religious voices in public life. He claims that the dominant form of academic liberalism, public reason liberalism, is far friendlier to religious influences in public life than either its proponents or detractors suppose. The best interpretation of public reason, convergence liberalism, rejects the much-derided "privatization" of religious belief, instead viewing religious contributions to politics as a resource for liberal political institutions. Many books reject privatization, Liberal Politics and Public Faith: Beyond Separation is unique in doing so on liberal grounds. (shrink)
Although most natural law ethical theories recognize moral absolutes, there is not much agreement even among natural law theorists about how to identify them. The author argues that in order to understand and determine the morality (or immorality) of a human action, it must be considered in relation to the organized system of human practices within which it is performed. Such an approach, he argues, is to be found in the natural law theory of Thomas Aquinas, especially once it is (...) recognized that the logical structure of Aquinas's ethical theory is basically that of an Aristotelian science. In order to depict this structure and to explain how it bears upon the analysis of action, the author investigates a number of issues that have attracted the attention of Thomistic and Aristotelian scholarship. He examines the nature of practical reason, its relationship with theoretical reason, the derivation of lower from higher ethical principles, the incommensurability of human goods, the relationship between will and intellect, and the principle of double effect. The book will be useful to students and scholars interested in ethics, especially from an Aristotelian and/or Thomistic perspective. One appendix reproduces the Leonine text of the De malo (question 6), with facing English translation. Another appendix provides facing Latin text and English translation of the Summa Theologiae I-II (question 94, article 2). ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kevin L. Flannery, S.J., author of many works on the history of logic--particularly Aristotelian logic--is dean of the faculty of philosophy and professor of the history of ancient philosophy at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. PRAISE FOR THE BOOK: ""I know of no more careful and detailed study of Thomas's principle that the realms of theoretical and practical rationality are parallel. This principle is indeed central to an understanding of Thomas Aquinas's ethical thought, and Father Flannery examines its ramifications most perspicaciously. His book constitutes a valuable and important addition to the Thomistic literature. Father Flannery's writing is lucid, if not always extremely engaging, and his arguments are well supported by references to, and quotations from, the Aristotelian and Thomistic texts upon which they are based.""--The Medieval Review ""It would be hard to overstate the importance of this book at the present juncture of Thomistic studies.""--Ralph McInerny, University of Notre Dame ""... of interest and of great value mostly to specialists in Aquinas's ethics or moral theory more generally. Flannery presents complex matters clearly, and his explanations of the logical presuppositions of Aquinas's moral thought are always illuminating.""--Jean Porter, Theological Studies ""This is a significant work that belongs on the bookshelf of any serious student of Aquinas.... An important contribution to Thomistic studies.""--Irish Theological Quarterly ""This scholastic text will particularly appeal to thinkers interested in Aristotelian mathematics and logic and their practical integration into Thomistic natural law ethics. However, all natural law scholars must address the questions of context and method raised by Flannery's insights and his careful, precise textual analyses."" -- Beverly Whelton, Review of Metaphysics. (shrink)