Von Hippel & Trivers reason that the potential benefits of successfully deceiving others provide a basis for the evolution of self-deception. However, as self-deceptive processes themselves provide considerable adaptive value to an individual, self-deception may have evolved as an end in itself, rather than as the means to an end of improving other-deception.
In response to the need for a more diverse workforce, our medical school developed new policies and procedures that focus on the recruitment and selection of diverse students with a specific focus on those considered underrepresented in medicine. To understand what these students bring to the practice of medicine, researchers investigated their perception of their cultural assets and how they plan to use these assets as physicians. A cross-section of 23 ethnically, culturally, and geographically diverse medical students were interviewed and (...) data were analyzed through phenomenographical methods. The results indicate that students view themselves as having multiple assets that could be of significant value in their future practice of medicine, including: a) an interest in science and access to family members in medicine, b) personal and familial struggles with health, c) self and family as immigrants, and d) strong family and community orientations. Students perceived these as cultural assets because they could directly identify where these assets could be valuable in medicine but questioned how to maintain them throughout medical school. Now that our institution has identified these assets, next steps include administrators' investigation of ways to leverage them through curricular and educational programs. (shrink)
Very often, different people, with different constitutions and comic sensibilities, will make divergent, conflicting judgments about the comic properties of a given person, object, or event, on account of those differences in their constitutions and comic sensibilities. And in many such cases, while we are inclined to say that their comic judgments are in conflict, we are not inclined to say that anybody is in error. The comic looks like a poster domain for the phenomenon of faultless disagreement. I argue (...) that the kind of theory that does the best job of accounting for the appearance of faultless disagreement is a de se version of a response-dependence account, according to which thinking that x is funny is self-attributing a property of the type, being disposed to have R to x in C. (shrink)
Primordial emotions are the subjective element of the instincts which are the genetically programmed behaviour patterns which contrive homeostasis. They include thirst, hunger for air, hunger for food, pain and hunger for specific minerals etc.There are two constituents of a primordial emotion—the specific sensation which when severe may be imperious, and the compelling intention for gratification by a consummatory act. They may dominate the stream of consciousness, and can have plenipotentiary power over behaviour.It is hypothesized that early in animal evolution (...) complex reflex mechanisms in the basal brain subserving homeostatic responses, in concert with elements of the reticular activating system subserving arousal, melded functionally with regions embodied in the progressive rostral development of the telencephalon. This included the emergent limbic and paralimbic areas, and the insula. This phylogenetically ancient organization subserved the origin of consciousness as the primordial emotion, which signalled that the organisms existence was immediately threatened. Neuroimaging confirms major activations in regions of the basal brain during primordial emotions in humans. The behaviour of decorticate humans and animals is discussed in relation to the possible existence of primitive awareness.Neuroimaging of the primordial emotions reveals that rapid gratification of intention by a consummatory act such as ingestion causes precipitate decline of both the initiating sensation and the intention. There is contemporaneous rapid disappearance of particular regions of brain activation which suggests they may be part of the jointly sufficient and severally necessary activations and deactivations which correlate with consciousness [Crick, F. & Koch, C. . A framework for consciousness. NatureNeuroscience,6, 119–126]. (shrink)
Presents a plethora of approaches to developing human potential in areas not conventionally addressed. Organized in two parts, this international collection of essays provides viable educational alternatives to those currently holding sway in an era of high-stakes accountability.
Even after the demise of the influential Uno School in the 1980s, Japanese economists have been continuously engaged in the categorial reconstruction of Marx’s Critique of Political Economy, especially the theory of value and money. Writing in the 1980s–2000s, authors of the ‘post-Uno School’, such as Ebitsuka Akira, Mukai Kimitoshi, Kataoka Kōji etc., broadened the value-theoretical views of Uno School orthodoxy to include, among others, the Neue Marx-Lektüre and the French economists C. Benetti and J. Cartelier. This paper will confront (...) the ‘post-Uno School’s’ reading of Marx’s theory of value, which poses the theories of value and money as unreconcilable, leading them to discard the theory of value in favour of a ‘monetary approach’. We show that the dismissal of value theory leads to an introduction of Baileyan and neoclassical elements into Marx’s theory, which we believe to be both theoretically and practically precarious. (shrink)
This essay examines the ways narratives succeed or fail to provide a life with structure and direction, as exemplified in Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women" and George Eliot's "Middlemarch". Whether a narrative can be a moral compass depends on the presence of what Eliot calls "a coherent social faith." The debate between Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine provides a framework for my analysis of the problematic status of such a social faith in the modern world. This analysis in turn (...) sheds light on contemporary work on narrative, community, and ethics by Hans Frei, Stanley Hauerwas, George Lindbeck, and Alasdair MacIntyre. (shrink)
“There’s no disputing about taste.” That’s got a nice ring to it, but it’s not quite the ring of truth. While there’s definitely something right about the aphorism – there’s a reason why it is, after all, an aphorism, and why its utterance tends to produce so much nodding of heads and muttering of “just so” and “yes, quite” – it’s surprisingly difficult to put one’s finger on just what the truth in the neighborhood is, exactly. One thing that’s pretty (...) clear is that what’s right about the aphorism, that there’s no disputing about taste, isn’t that there’s no disputing about taste. There’s heaps of disputing about taste. People engage in disputes about which movies, music, paintings, literature, meals, furniture, architectural styles, etc. are good, beautiful, tasty, fun, elegant, ugly, disgusting, etc. all the time. This is obvious to anyone who has watched dueling-movie-critics shows, read theater reviews, or negotiated with a group or partner about which movie or restaurant to go to, or which sofa or painting to put in the living room. It takes great care and good aim to fling a brick without hitting somebody who’s engaged in a dispute about taste. (shrink)
Lying is an important moral phenomenon that most people are affected by on a daily basis—be it in personal relationships, in political debates, or in the form of fake news. Nevertheless, surprisingly little is known about what actually constitutes a lie. According to the traditional definition of lying, a person lies if they explicitly express something they believe to be false. Consequently, it is often assumed that people cannot lie by more indirectly communicating believed‐false claims, for instance by merely conversationally (...) implicating them. In this paper, we subject this claim to an empirical test. In a preregistered study of 300 participants, we investigate how people judge cases of implicit deceptions that would usually be excluded by the traditional definition of lying (i.e., conversational implicatures, presuppositions, and nonverbal actions). Our results show that people do in fact consider it possible to lie by indirect means, suggesting that people have a broader concept of lying than is usually assumed. Moreover, our findings indicate that lie judgments are closely tied to the extent to which agents are perceived as having committed themselves to the believed‐false claims they have communicated. We discuss the implications of our results for the traditional definition of lying and propose a new commitment‐based definition of lying that can account for the findings of our experiment. (shrink)
“Naturalistic” semantic theories attempt to specify, in nonintentional and nonsemantic terms, a sufficient condition for a mental representation’s having a particular meaning. Such theories have trouble accounting for the possibility of representational error. In his latest book, Robert Cummins traces the problem to the fact that the theories currently on offer identify the meaning of a representation with certain features of its use. Only a theory that takes meaning to be an intrinsic feature of a representation, Cummins argues, can both (...) accommodate representational error and play a genuinely explanatory role in an account of rational capacities. In the second half of the book he develops and defends a proposal that he calls the “picture theory of representation.”. (shrink)
In Insensitive Semantics (INS) and earlier work (see for example C&L (1997), (1998), (2004), (2005)) we defend a combination of two views: speech act pluralism and semantic minimalism. We're not alone advocating speech act pluralism; a modified version of it can be found in Mark Richard (1998), and we're delighted to have found a recent ally in Scott Soames (see chapter 3 of Soames (2001)1). There's less explicit support for minimalism, though we think it’s one way to interpret parts of (...) Donald Davidson's work. John MacFarlane's reply to INS made clear to us that there might be more minimalists than we thought and that MacFarlane is one of them. MacFarlane's Non-Indexical Contextualism (NIC) incorporates a version of semantic minimalism; this made us realize that others who sympathize with MacFarlane's view (for example Mark Richard (2003) and Egan, Hawthorne and Weatherson (2005)) are, in effect, semantic minimalists. (shrink)
Andy Egan has presented a dilemma for decision theory. As is well known, Newcomb cases appear to undermine the case for evidential decision theory. However, Egan has come up with a new scenario which poses difficulties for causal decision theory. I offer a simple solution to this dilemma in terms of a modified EDT. I propose an epistemological test: take some feature which is relevant to your evaluation of the scenarios under consideration, evidentially correlated with the actions under (...) consideration albeit, causally independent of them. Hold this feature fixed as a hypothesis. The test shows that, in Newcomb cases, EDT would mislead the agent. Where the test shows EDT to be misleading, I propose to use fictive conditional credences in the EDT-formula under the constraint that they are set to equal values. I then discuss Huw Price’s defence of EDT as an alternative to my diagnosis. I argue that my solution also applies if one accepts the main premisses of Price’s argument. I close with applying my solution to Nozick’s original Newcomb problem. (shrink)
Problems about the accidental properties of properties motivate us--force us, I think--not to identify properties with the sets of their instances. If we identify them instead with functions from worlds to extensions, we get a theory of properties that is neutral with respect to disputes over counterpart theory, and we avoid a problem for Lewis's theory of events. Similar problems about the temporary properties of properties motivate us--though this time they probably don't force us--to give up this theory as well, (...) and to identify properties with functions from world, time pairs to extensions. Again, the replacement theory is neutral with respect to a metaphysical dispute that the old theory (arguably) forces us to take a stand on--the dispute over whether objects have temporal parts. It also allows us to give a smoother semantics for predication, to better accommodate our intuitions about which objects temporary properties are properties of, and to make temporally self-locating beliefs genuinely self -locating. (shrink)
Responsible research and innovation has come to represent a change in the relationship between science, technology and society. With origins in the democratisation of science, and the inclusion of ethical and societal aspects in research and development activities, RRI offers a means of integrating society and the research and innovation communities. In this article, we frame RRI activities through the lens of layers of science and technology governance as a means of characterising the context in which the RRI activity is (...) positioned and the goal of those actors promoting the RRI activities in shaping overall governance patterns. RRI began to emerge during a time of considerable deliberation about the societal and governance challenges around nanotechnology, in which stakeholders were looking for new ways of integrating notions of responsibility in nanotechnology research and development. For this reason, this article focuses on nanotechnology as the site for exploring the evolution and growth of RRI. (shrink)
This paper traces the history of artificial insemination by selected donors as a strategy for positive eugenic improvement. While medical artificial insemination has a longer history, its use as a eugenic strategy was first mooted in late nineteenth-century France. It was then developed as ‘scientific motherhood’ for war widows and those without partners by Marion Louisa Piddington in Australia following the Great War. By the 1930s AID was being more widely used clinically in Britain as a medical solution to (...) male infertility for married couples. In 1935 English postal clerk, Herbert Brewer, promoted AID as the socialization of the germ plasm in a eugenic scheme. The next year Hermann Muller, American Drosophila geneticist and eugenicist, presented his plan for human improvement by AID to Stalin. Some twenty years later, Muller, together with Robert Klark Graham, began planning a Foundation for Germinal Choice in California. This was finally opened in 1980 as the first practical experiment in eugenic AID, producing some 215 babies over the twenty years it functioned. While AID appeared to be a means of squaring a eugenic circle by separating paternity from love relationships, and so allowing eugenic improvement without inhibiting individual choice in marriage, it found very little favour with those who might use it, not least because of a couple’s desire to have their ‘own’ children has always seemed stronger than any eugenic aspirations. No state has ever contemplated using AID as a social policy. (shrink)
The past decade has seen a protracted debate over the semantics of epistemic modals. According to contextualists, epistemic modals quantify over the possibilities compatible with some contextually determined group’s information. Relativists often object that contextualism fails to do justice to the way we assess utterances containing epistemic modals for truth or falsity. However, recent empirical work seems to cast doubt on the relativist’s claim, suggesting that ordinary speakers’ judgments about epistemic modals are more closely in line with contextualism than relativism (...) (Knobe & Yalcin 2014; Khoo 2015). This paper furthers the debate by reporting new empirical research revealing a previously overlooked dimension of speakers’ truth-value judgments concerning epistemic modals. Our results show that these judgments vary systematically with the question under discussion in the conversational context in which the utterance is being assessed. We argue that this ‘QUD effect’ is difficult to explain if contextualism is true, but is readily explained by a suitably flexible form of relativism. (shrink)
You’re imagining, in the course of a different game of make-believe, that you’re a bank robber. You don’t believe that you’re a bank robber. You are moved to point your finger, gun-wise, at the person pretending to be the bank teller and say, “Stick ‘em up! This is a robbery!”.
Issues of responsibility in the world of nanotechnology are becoming explicit with the emergence of a discourse on ‘responsible development’ of nanoscience and nanotechnologies. Much of this discourse centres on the ambivalences of nanotechnology and of promising technology in general. Actors must find means of dealing with these ambivalences. Actors’ actions and responses to ambivalence are shaped by their position and context, along with strategic games they are involved in, together with other actors. A number of interviews were conducted with (...) industrial actors with the aim of uncovering their ethical stances towards responsible development of nanotechnology. The data shows that standard repertoires of justification of nanotechnological development were used. Thus, the industrial actors fell back on their position and associated responsibilities. Such responses reinforce a division of moral labour in which industrial actors and scientists can focus on the progress of science and technology, while other actors, such as NGOs, are expected to take care of broader considerations, such as ethical and social issues. (shrink)
From a theoretical perspective, most discussions of statistical learning have focused on the possible “statistical” properties that are the object of learning. Much less attention has been given to defining what “learning” is in the context of “statistical learning.” One major difficulty is that SL research has been monitoring participants’ performance in laboratory settings with a strikingly narrow set of tasks, where learning is typically assessed offline, through a set of two-alternative-forced-choice questions, which follow a brief visual or auditory familiarization (...) stream. Is that all there is to characterizing SL abilities? Here we adopt a novel perspective for investigating the processing of regularities in the visual modality. By tracking online performance in a self-paced SL paradigm, we focus on the trajectory of learning. In a set of three experiments we show that this paradigm provides a reliable and valid signature of SL performance, and it offers important insights for understanding how statistical regularities are perceived and assimilated in the visual modality. This demonstrates the promise of integrating different operational measures to our theory of SL. (shrink)
David Egan offers an original comparative study of Wittgenstein and Heidegger, identifying a similar concern with authenticity in their work. By examining their divergent ideas on how to exist and philosophize authentically, Egan demonstrates Wittgenstein and Heidegger's continued relevance to contemporary thought in a novel way.
I think that there are good reasons to adopt a relativist semantics for epistemic modal claims such as ``the treasure might be under the palm tree'', according to which such utterances determine a truth value relative to something finer-grained than just a world (or a <world, time> pair). Anyone who is inclined to relativise truth to more than just worlds and times faces a problem about assertion. It's easy to be puzzled about just what purpose would be served by assertions (...) of this kind, and how to understand what we'd be up to in our use of sentences like ``the treasure might be under the palm tree'', if they have such peculiar truth conditions. After providing a very quick argument to motivate a relativist view of epistemic modals, I bring out and attempt to resolve this problem in making sense of the role of assertions with relativist truth conditions. Solving this problem should be helpful in two ways: first, it eliminates an apparently forceful objection to relativism, and second, spelling out the relativist account of assertion and communication will help to make clear just what the relativist position is, exactly, and why it's interesting. (shrink)
This paper identifies the phenomenon of conceptual competence injustice, a form of epistemic injustice that occurs when a marginalized epistemic agent makes a conceptual claim and is illegitimately regarded as having failed to grasp one or more of the concepts expressed in her testimony. The notion of a conceptual claim is given a deflationary account that is coextensive with the class of a priori knowable claims. This study reveals a form of oppression that severely hinders marginalized epistemic agents who seek (...) to create or communicate conceptual knowledge. Conceptual competence injustice is compared and contrasted with three other forms of epistemic injustice: testimonial injustice, hermeneutical injustice, and contributory injustice. The final section investigates a number of damaging effects that conceptual competence injustice has on marginalized persons pursuing a career in academic philosophy. (shrink)