For more than 100 years, anthropologists have collected ethnographic research among communities who assert that the spirits, animal allies, and other entities of the unseen world are “really real,” yet we have historically contextualized this information under the umbrella of cultural relativism rather than taking the veracity of these claims seriously. In the last decade, some anthropologists claim that our discipline has finally undergone an ontological turn, which opens a door for anthropologists to finally take claims of nonhuman sentience seriously (...) under the umbrella of ontological, rather than cultural, relativism. This paper takes issue with ontological relativism as just one more frame for explaining away the stories of other-than-human consciousness that ethnographers report and suggests that there is an urgent need to consider the relevance, rather than the relativism, of other-than-human consciousness. It looks to Michael Harner's work as a welcome alternative to ontological relativism and encourages opening our minds to a reconsideration of what is “really real.”. (shrink)
This paper discusses archaeological, historical, and contemporary ethnographic evidence for the use of the San Pedro cactus in northern Peru as a vehicle for traveling between worlds and for imparting the “vista” (magical sight) necessary for shamanic healers to divine the cause of their patients' ailments. Using iconographic, ethnohistorical, and ethnographic evidence for the uninterrupted use of this sacred plant as a means of access to the Divine and as a tool for healing, it describes the relationship between San Pedro, (...) ancestor worship, water/fertility cults and also the common symbolic associations between San Pedro and wind-spirits. It closes by suggesting that the more than 2000 year time-depth of using this plant as a means for accessing the realms of Spirit and as a tool for healing should serve to challenge the unfortunate tendency in the contemporary United States to consider this plant as a “recreational drug.”. (shrink)
The gap between the number of organs available for transplant and the number of individuals who need transplanted organs continues to increase. At the same time, thousands of transplantable organs are needlessly overlooked every year for the single reason that they come from individuals who were declared dead according to cardio pulmonary criteria. Expanding the donor population to individuals who die uncontrolled cardiac deaths will reduce this disparity, but only if organ preservation efforts are utilized. Concern about potential legal liability (...) for temporary preservation of organs pending a search for family members appears to be one of the impediments to wider use of donation in cases of uncontrolled cardiac death in states without statutes explicitly authorizing such action. However, we think that the risk of liability for organ preservation under these circumstances is de minimis, and that concerns about legal impediments to preservation should yield to the ethical imperative of undertaking it. (shrink)
Obtaining informed consent has typically become a stylized ritual of presenting and signing a form, in which physicians are acting defensively and patients lack control over the content and flow of information. This leaves patients at risk both for being under-informed relative to their decisional needs and of receiving more information than they need or desire. By personalizing the process of seeking and receiving information and allowing patients to specify their desire for information in a prospective manner, we aim to (...) shift genuine control over the informational process to patients. A new paradigm of Information on Demand, such as we suggest, would also enhance legal certainty, achieve greater congruence between the information patients want and the information they receive, and promote more meaningful patient-physician interactions, a desirable outcome that has been difficult to achieve by other means. (shrink)
Several studies have explored differences between North American and European doctor patient relationships. They have focused primarily on differences in philosophical traditions and historic and socioeconomic factors between these two regions that might lead to differences in behaviour, as well as divergent concepts in and justifications of medical practice. However, few empirical intercultural studies have been carried out to identify in practice these cultural differences. This lack of standard comparative empirical studies led us to compare differences between France and the (...) USA regarding end-of-life decision-making. We tested certain assertions put forward by bioethicists concerning the impact of culture on the acceptance of advance directives in such decisions. In particular, we compared North American and French intensive care professional's attitudes toward: (1) advance directives, and (2) the role of the family in decisions to withhold or withdraw life-support. (shrink)
The determinative issue in applying the insanity defense is whether the defendant experienced a legally relevant functional impairment at the time of the offense. Categorical exclusion of personality disorders from the definition of mental disease is clinically and morally arbitrary because it may lead to unfair conviction of a defendant with a personality disorder who actually experienced severe, legally relevant impairments at the time of the crime. There is no need to consider such a drastic approach in most states and (...) in the federal courts, where the sole test of insanity is whether the defendant was “unable to appreciate the wrongfulness of his conduct at the time of the offense.” This is because the only symptoms that are legally relevant in such jurisdictions are those that impair reality-testing and thereby affect the person's capacity to understand the nature and consequences of her actions. However, if the test of insanity includes a “volitional prong” (inability to control one's behavior), some way must be found to limit the scope of the defense to the core cases (involving psychotic conditions) to which it has traditionally been applied, and to prevent a shift toward a deterministic account of criminal conduct — i.e., “people can't help being who they are and doing what they do.” The best way of accomplishing this is to limit the definition of mental disease to severe disorders characterized by gross disturbances of the person's capacity to understand reality. (shrink)
Tomasello et al. propose that shared intentionality is a uniquely human ability. In light of this, we discuss several cultural behaviors that seem to result from a motivation to share experiences with others, suggest evidence for coordination and collaboration among chimpanzees, and cite recent findings that counter the argument that the predominance of emulation in chimpanzees reflects a deficit in intention reading.
In contemporary educational contexts there is considerable variation in how argumentation works and what forms and styles it takes. Influencing factors include the educational purpose and task, the level of education, and the discipline or curriculum subject in which it occurs. This paper offers a theoretical framework and a set of multimodal analytical tools which can provide a rich and systematic account of such variation. Using naturalistic data from three different educational sites I illustrate how such a framework reveals the (...) diverse ways in which students use language and other modes of meaning making as they engage in processes of argumentation. In particular, I consider how new technologies have caused shifts in the distribution of meaning across different semiotic modes (such as visual images, space, colour and graphics) and how this impacts upon both argumentation process and product. The educational implications of such changes are also considered. (shrink)
Organ transplantation has become a proven, cost-effective lifesaving treatment, but its promise is contingent on the number of available organs. The growing gap between the demand and supply results in unnecessary loss and diminished quality of life as well as high costs for surviving patients and health insurers. Twenty years after the enactment of the National Organ Transplantation Act, it is time to rethink the moral basis and overall design of organ transplantation policy. We propose a national plan for organ (...) transplantation insurance under which the federal government would assume responsibility for increasing the organ supply and would cover all costs associated with transplantation for patients not otherwise covered. (shrink)
Background and aim With the increasing interest in lifestyle, health and consequences of unhealthy lifestyles for the healthcare system, a new kind of solidarity is gaining importance: lifestyle solidarity. While it might not seem fair to let other people pay for the costs arising from an unhealthy lifestyle, it does not seem fair either to punish people for their lifestyle. However, it is not clear how solidarity is assessed by people, when considering disease risks or lifestyle risks. The aim of (...) this study was to investigate the degree of solidarity with lifestyle as well as with other factors that are related to health outcomes—for example, old age—and the relation between this degree of solidarity and various characteristics. Methods This cross-sectional study is part of the Dutch longitudinal SMILE study. Data on the degree of solidarity with different lifestyles and old age, and the relation between the degree of solidarity and various demographic and other variables were obtained in a questionnaire survey. Results Solidarity with smokers and overweight people was moderate, as was solidarity with older people. Respondents were ambivalent about athletes. Respondents who were younger, male and highly educated, and those with a healthy lifestyle, a small social network, high quality of life and an internal locus of control, showed low solidarity. Conclusions Solidarity with an unhealthy lifestyle and old age is moderate and the degree of solidarity varies among the different subgroups. (shrink)
Bayesian confirmation theory is rife with confirmation measures. Zalabardo (2009) focuses on the probability difference measure, the probability ratio measure, the likelihood difference measure, and the likelihood ratio measure. He argues that the likelihood ratio measure is adequate but each of the other three measures is not. He argues for this by setting out three adequacy conditions on confirmation measures and arguing in effect that all of them are met by the likelihood ratio measure but not by any of the (...) other three measures. Glass and McCartney (2015), hereafter “G&M”, accept the conclusion of Zalabardo’s argument along with each of the premises in it. They nonetheless try to improve on Zalabardo’s argument by replacing his third adequacy condition with a weaker condition. They do this because of a worry to the effect that Zalabardo’s third adequacy condition runs counter to the idea behind his first adequacy condition. G&M have in mind confirmation in the sense of increase in probability: the degree to which E confirms H is a matter of the degree to which E increases H’s probability. I call this sense of confirmation “IP”. I set out four ways of precisifying IP. I call them “IP1”, “IP2”, “IP3”, and “IP4”. Each of them is based on the assumption that the degree to which E increases H’s probability is a matter of the distance between p(H | E) and a certain other probability involving H. I then evaluate G&M’s argument (with a minor fix) in light of them. (shrink)
The corporate glass ceiling continues to be a challenge for many organizations. However, women executives may be facing a second pane of obstruction – an expatriate glass ceiling – that prevents them from receiving the foreign management assignments and experience that is becoming increasing critical for promotion to upper management. The responsibility to break the expatriate glass ceiling lies with both female managers and the multinational corporations that utilize expatriates. In this paper, we propose pre-assignment, on-assignment, and post-assignment strategies for (...) breaking the expatriate glass ceiling. (shrink)
In this article, we discuss the relationships between discrimination, harassment, and the glass ceiling, arguing that many of the factors that preclude women from occupying executive and managerial positions also foster sexual harassment. We suggest that measures designed to increase numbers of women in higher level positions will reduce sexual harassment. We first define and discuss discrimination, harassment, and the glass ceiling, relationships between each, and relevant legislation. We next discuss the relationships between gender and sexual harassment, emphasizing the influence (...) of gender inequality on sexual harassment. We then present recommendations for organizations seeking to reduce sexual harassment, emphasizing the role that women executives may play in such efforts and, importantly, the recursive effects of such efforts on increasing the numbers of women in higher level positions in organizations. (shrink)
Contemporary phenomenal externalists are motivated to a large extent by the transparency of experience and by the related doctrine of representationalism. On their own, however, transparency and representationalism do not suffice to establish externalism. Hence we should hesitate to dismiss phenomenal internalism, a view shared by many generations of competent philosophers. Rather, we should keep both our options open, internalism and externalism. It is hard, however, to see how to keep open the internalist option, for although transparency and representationalism have (...) not yet definitively established externalism, they have indeed made it quite intuitive. Internalism, by comparison, comes across at first sight as antiquated and ridden with difficulties. This is why I propose the Stained Glass model of consciousness. I do so with the following two aims: first, to make internalism intuitive in the age of transparency, and second, to show how to resist the many recent anti-internalist arguments. In particular, I argue that phenomenal internalism need not be epistemically worrisome, that it is compatible at once with transparency, representationalism, and content externalism, and that although it requires an error theory, this error theory is a harmless one. (shrink)
This paper examines Honig’s use of Rancière in her book ‘Democracy and the Foreigner’. In seeking to clarify the benefits of ‘foreignness’ for democratic politics it raises the concern that Honig does not acknowledge the ways in which her own democratic cosmopolitanism may be more akin to Rancière’s police than politics. By challenging Honig’s assertion that democracy is usually read as a romance with the suggestion that it is more commonly read as a horror, I unpick the interstices of Honig’s (...) and Rancière’s work to separate foreignness from democratic cosmopolitanism. Instead, although I posit democratic cosmopolitanism’s potential as a police more conducive to politics I also suggest that the particular salience of Honig’s ‘foreigner’ figure is that it supplements Rancièrian politics, demonstrating a praxis of ‘looking anew’ at our ordinary social practices. By making these seem strange to us, we can discover a new critical perspective from which to question and subvert, thereby furthering the potential of Rancièrian democratic politics. (shrink)
Bonnie Steinbock argues that Peter Singer has made an important contribution to remind us that animals deserve very special consideration, but that he fails to make a compelling case against "speciesism.".
In “Mad Narratives: Self-Constitutions Through the Diagnostic Looking Glass,” by using narrative approaches to the self, I explore how the diagnosis of mental disorder shapes personal identities and influences flourishing. My particular focus is the diagnosis grounded on the criteria provided by the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). I develop two connected accounts pertaining to the self and mental disorder. I use the memoirs and personal stories written by the subjects with a DSM diagnosis as illustrations to bolster (...) my claims. First, expanding on the narrative approaches to the self, I explain how narratives about a subject shape her self-constitution. I elucidate how this process is generated by drawing on research in developmental psychology, cognitive science, and social psychology. Next, using this account as a springboard, I argue that the DSM diagnosis of mental disorder serves as a source of narrative, entering into the patients’ autobiographical and social narratives. This plays an important role in the diagnosed subjects’ self-understanding, self-constitution and flourishing. In this vein, how mental disorders are classified is not only a theoretical question about accurately taxonomizing the various experiences related to mental distress but also an ethical question about which ways of talking about mental disorders will allow subjects to respond effectively to their psychological distress, to flourish and to live autonomous and fulfilling lives. Finally, I suggest that the DSM-based narratives wield a double-edged sword when it comes to the subject’s flourishing: On the one hand, there are problems with some DSM-based narratives that stem from the DSM diagnostic schema and the culture of DSM diagnoses. These problems render these DSM-based narratives unbeneficial for flourishing as they constrain the range of adoptive social, cognitive and emotional responses the subjects can give to their mental disorders. On the other hand, there are grounds to believe that some DSM-based narratives help subjects to flourish. For instance, they provide certainty to subjects' otherwise puzzling symptoms and help them reach out to others with similar experiences. Understanding how the DSM-based narratives can both benefit and harm will help us address problems with psychiatric diagnoses and the dissemination of knowledge about mental disorders in popular culture. The project aims to convince both philosophers and psychiatrists that no plausible theory of the self can be developed without attending to the topic of mental disorder and that no theory of mental disorder can be complete without devising the tools provided by the philosophical approaches to the self as well as developmental and social psychology. It also calls for methodological alterations in mental health ethics research, arguing that a careful scrutiny of mental disorder memoirs can advance the ethical underpinnings to the practice of psychiatry. (shrink)
This article describes "Project Breakthrough: A Survey of Corporate Practices for Shattering the Glass Ceiling." Evidence is presented that the "glass ceiling" remains intact in many areas. A list of barriers (social sterotypes) that support the glass ceiling are presented. Some corporate strategies found in the literature are also presented. Sixty-nine companies in the Houston area were surveyed. A summary score based on responses to thirty-four practices listed in the survey were computed. The top twelve organizations were identified as "distinguished," (...) and site visits were conducted. The practices of these companies are listed. (shrink)
The following essay brings together philosophy and film. On the one hand, it is a short study of Hegel’s chapter on morality in the Phenomenology of Spirit. On the other hand, it deals with some of the moral conflicts presented in Ingmar Bergman’s 1961 film, Through a Glass Darkly. Central to my discussion is the concept of God. I aim to show how God, manifest in absolute Spirit, should not be understood as a transcendental figure located in a beyond, but (...) as a concrete entity found within the acts of forgiveness and reconciliation. (shrink)
Reflection names the central activity of Western philosophical practice; the mirror and its attendant metaphors of reflection are omnipresent in the self-image of Western philosophy and in metaphilosophical reflection on reflection. But the physical experiences of being reflected by glass mirrors have been inadequately theorized contributors to those metaphors, and this has implications not only for the self-image and the self of philosophy but also for metaphilosophical practice. This article begins to rethink the metaphor of reflection anew. Paying attention to (...) the history of the glass mirror in Europe reveals and challenges the modern emergence of clear ontological distinctions between disembodied subjects and the objects of their knowledge, and suggests a compelling terrain of metaphilosophical analysis. On the reading offered by the article, the inherent complexity of the relationship between selves and their mirror images, a complexity mediated by social location, historical situation, and particular projects, points to significant spaces of unknowing, of indeterminacy, and of ontological ambiguity. (shrink)
This paper examines the history of glass colouring. It reviews Kitna of Jayybir as a philosopher and chemist. The art of lustre-painting on glass originated in Syria during the Umayyad Caliphate in the eighth century and was soon practised in the neighbouring area. The paper reviews Arabic literature that deals with the colouring of glass until the 13th century, and with pre-Islamic and Latin books of recipes that deal with glass colouring. Recipes for cast coloured glass are very few and (...) scant in non-Arabic literature, and lustre-painting on glass was not mentioned in any treatise outside Arabic, even in the works of Theophilus and Neri. The colouring of glass gemstones by colour diffusion is not mentioned also. The paper compares the recipes of Kitzaward as cobalt oxide in glass colouring. Part two of the paper gives a representative selection of recipes from Kitāb al-Durra for the three methods of glass colouring. (shrink)
El objetivo de este artículo es mostrar cómo en la novela Ciudad de cristal de Paul Auster tiene lugar una aproximación a lo singular mediante el lenguaje. Sin embargo, esta adecuación entre las palabras y las cosas tiene que sucumbir frente al movimiento y cambio constante de estas últimas, lo que produce que la adecuación perfecta de lo singular y el lenguaje no se pueda llevar a cabo, transformándose el lenguaje en silencio. Creemos que esto se confirma en la actitud (...) de dos de los personajes de esta novela, cuya única alternativa y escapatoria consiste en fundirse con la ciudad, convirtiendo el espacio en una nueva articulación lingüística. The aim of this article is to show how in Paul Auster’s novel City of Glass, an approach to singularity through language takes place. Nevertheless, this adjustment between words and things fails because of the constant movement and change of things, resulting in failure of the perfect adjustment between the singular and language, turning the language into silence. We think that this is confirmed in the behaviour of two of this novel’s characters, whose only alternative and escape consists of merging with the city, transforming the space into a new linguistic articulation. (shrink)
Transparency has come to enact a fantasy of renewal and immediacy that Theodor W. Adorno himself criticized decades before its widespread deployment in the embassies, ministries, and other government and commercial buildings dotting the landscape of the “New Berlin”. His work criticizes transparency in asserting that the potential promise of insight is only to be realized, if ever, through a recognition of reason's own limitations and the coercive influence of social relations upon critical perception. This chapter traces this critique in (...) the thought-images of Minima Moralia in Adorno's essay “Functionalism Today”, in which he brings much of his critique of aesthetics and politics to bear on architecture. It has set off an intense local debate about the appropriateness of the transparency metaphor, as well as the practical considerations of the use of glass in a public space. (shrink)
Through a glass, darkly Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9633-2 Authors Inmaculada de Melo-Martín, Division of Medical Ethics, Department of Public Health, Weill Cornell Medical College—Cornell University, 402 E. 67th Street, New York, NY 10065, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
The first note examines current assumptions about the medieval origins of the sand-glass and underlines the defective nature of our knowledge. The second note suggests a possible etymology for an unusual fifteenth-century English term for the instrument. The third note assembles such evidence as can be found on the price of sand-glasses and the structure of the trade that produced them.
Apparently it was claimed that organisations are often not build to accommodate women’s values, primarily because they entered organisations relatively late, and work in a relatively narrow range of occupations. Given this scenario, men and women experience organisational cultures very differently and perceive gender discrimination as an issue. The number of women with children participating in the paid workforce has increased markedly over recent decades, but many workplaces have not altered their expectations or provided work policies to allow women to (...) balance work and family responsibilities There is considerable and increasing agreement that what in fact keeps women back are invisible and artificial barriers that prevent qualified individuals from advancing within their organisations and reaching their full potential – the ‘glass ceiling’ phenomenon. Although women in Malaysia now represent 44.5% of the working population and are just as academically qualified as men, they are grossly under-represented at the senior management positions. This study attempts to discover the obstacles that keep women from rising above certain level in the organisations in an effort to raise both their individual self-worth and the level of their contribution to economic development. (shrink)
In this assessment of the intersection of trade, picturing collections and knowledge?making in Early Modern Antwerp, the focus is on the role of luxury glass, mirror and lens technology and the science of optics. Emphasizing the social ties that facilitated these intersections, it is argued that newly invented luxury goods such as the pictures of collections and the art cabinets allowed Antwerp craftsmen, artists and art dealers to export the message that the material objects in which they traded were objects (...) of knowledge: not to everyone, however, but to those who desired membership of a select community. (shrink)