Bart Pattyn: Needless to say, we are more than pleased with the willingness of Michael Walzer to be here in Leuven. After the stimulating lecture yesterday we now have the opportunity to pose some questions to Michael Walzer in the same room where we talked with his friend, Harry Frankfurt, as well as with Bernard Williams. I have asked Professor Selling to moderate this discussion which I am sure he will do with a firm hand.Joseph Selling: We have (...) two papers which Prof. Walzer, and many of you, have read in advance. Perhaps we can take the questions from the authors of those papers and then take other questions. (shrink)
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)
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.
Discontented people might talk of corruption in the Commons, closeness in the Commons and the necessity of reforming the Commons, said Mr. Spenlow solemnly, in conclusion; but when the price of wheat per bushel had been the highest, the Commons had been the busiest; and a man might lay his hand upon his heart, and say this to the whole world, – ‘Touch the Commons, and down comes the country!’.
What kinds of political arrangements enable people from different national, racial, religious, or ethnic groups to live together in peace? In this book one of the most influential political theorists of our time discusses the politics of toleration. Michael Walzer examines five "regimes of toleration"—from multinational empires to immigrant societies—and describes the strengths and weaknesses of each regime, as well as the varying forms of toleration and exclusion each fosters. Walzer shows how power, class, and gender interact with (...) religion, race, and ethnicity in the different regimes and discusses how toleration works—and how it should work—in multicultural societies like the United States. Walzer offers an eloquent defense of toleration, group differences, and pluralism, moving quickly from theory to practical issues, concrete examples, and hard questions. His concluding argument is focused on the contemporary United States and represents an effort to join and advance the debates about "culture war," the "politics of difference," and the "disuniting of America." Although he takes a grim view of contemporary politics, he is optimistic about the possibility of coexistence: cultural pluralism and a common citizenship can go together, he suggests, in a strong and egalitarian democracy. (shrink)
Neuroeconomics is the newest of the economic sciences with a focus on how the embodied human brain interacts with its institutional and social environment to make economic decisions. This paper presents an overview of neuroeconomics methods and reviews a number of results in this emerging field of study.
This is a book about justice: the justice of a nation's major institutions and the justice of the interaction of nations on the world stage. Michael Walzer, one of North America's most prominent social critics, has written acclaimed works about the morality of warfare, the distribution of health care and political power, the need to tolerate social difference, and the nature of justice itself.
BLWith new text and full apparatus criticus The Eudemian Ethics was one of two ethical treatises which Aristotle wrote on the subject of ethica or `matters to do with character'. Although the two works cover much the same ground, the Nicomachean Ethics is better known; the poor manuscript tradition of the Eudemian Ethics has made correct translation and interpretation of the text extremely difficult. The subject of the work is the choice of a certain means of conduct, made by a (...) `man of practical wisdom', between two extremes of behaviour: asceticism and yielding to uncontrolled impulses. Aristotle also stresses the notion of moral intention and the importance of virtue of character. This new Oxford Classical Text of the Eudemian Ethics is the result of many years of work. After Sir David Ross's death, his original text was substantially reworked and revised by his friend and colleague R. R. Walzer, who was aided in the revision by his former pupil Mrs Jean Mingay, who continued his work after his death in 1974. Mrs Mingay was fortunate in being able to make use of previously unpublished contributions from D. J. Allan after his death in the late seventies, and more recently has been helped in her work by the suggestions of Professor D. A. Russell, David Robinson, and Christopher Rowe. (shrink)
In his widely influential statement of just war theory, Michael Walzer exempts conscripted soldiers from all responsibility for taking part in war, whether just or unjust (the thesis of the moral equality of soldiers). He endows the overwhelming majority of civilians with almost absolute immunity from military attack on the ground that they aren't responsible for the war their country is waging, whether just or unjust. I argue that Walzer is much too lenient on both soldiers and civilians. (...) Soldiers fighting for a just cause and soldiers fighting for an unjust one are not morally equal. A substantial proportion of civilians in a democracy are responsible, to a significant degree, for their country's unjust war. Moreover, under certain (admittedly rare) circumstances, some of them are legitimate targets of military attack. This has bearing on settling moral accounts in the wake of war and the issue of forgiving the wrongs done in its course: possible candidates for such forgiveness are much more numerous than is usually assumed. (shrink)
Passion is a hidden issue behind or at the heart of, contemporary theoretical debates about nationalism, identity politics and religious fundamentalism. It is not that reason and passion cannot be conceptually distinguished. They are, however, always entangled in practice - and this entanglement itself requires a conceptual account. So it is my ambition to blur the line between reason and passion: to rationalize (some of) the passions and to impassion reason. Passionate intensity has a legitimate place in the social world. (...) This extension of rational legitimacy to the political passions seems to me a useful revision of liberal theory which has been too pre-occupied in recent years with the construction of dispassionate deliberative procedures. It opens the way for better accounts of social connection and conflict and for more explicit and self-conscious answers to the unavoidable political questions: which side are you on? Key Words: conviction • interest • liberalism • passion • politics • Yeats. (shrink)
The idea of distributive justice presupposes a bounded world within which distributions takes place: a group of people committed to dividing, exchanging, and sharing social goods, first of all among themselves. That world, as I have already argued, is the political community, whose members distribute power to one another and avoid, if they possibly can, sharing it with anyone else. When we think about distributive justice, we think about independent cities or countries capable of arranging their own patterns of division (...) and exchange, justly or unjustly. We assume an established group and a fixed population, and so we miss the first and most important distributive question: How is that group constituted? (shrink)
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.
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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)
The findings reported in the article “Just War and Unjust Soldiers: American Public Opinion on the Moral Equality of Combatants,” by Scott Sagan and Benjamin Valentino, are indeed disturbing, but I am not convinced that they tell us all we need to know about public attitudes. Different questions, those that invite respondents to reflect on the reciprocal nature of practical morality, might reveal very different views of justified and unjustified conduct in war. I believe that these views, regarding, for example, (...) the treatment of prisoners of war, would probably support the idea of the moral equality of soldiers on the battlefield. (shrink)
This volume of collected essays by Michael Walzer seeks to bring a more concentrated focus on specifically Jewish outlooks regarding three key themes: "Political Order and Civil Society"; "Territory, Sovereignty, and International Society"; and "War and Peace.".
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)