In this study, we investigated whether differences in the experience of regret may be a potential explanation for damaging behaviours associated with psychopathy and criminal offending. Participants were incarcerated offenders (n = 60) and non-incarcerated controls (n = 20). Psychopathic traits were characterised with the Psychopathic Checklist: Screening Version. Regret was assessed by responses to outcomes on a simulated gambling task. Incarcerated offenders experienced a reduced sense of regret as compared to non-incarcerated controls. We obtained some evidence that specific psychopathic (...) factors and facets could differentially relate to the experience and use of emotions. Our data provide initial evidence of important associations between negative emotions and decision behaviour in the context of criminal offending. (shrink)
The standard contextualist solution to the skeptical paradox is intended to provide a way to retain epistemic closure while avoiding the excessive modesty of radical skepticism and the immodesty of Moorean dogmatism. However, contextualism’s opponents charge that its solution suffers from epistemic immodesty comparable to Moorean dogmatism. According to the standard contextualist solution, all contexts where an agent knows some ordinary proposition to be true are contexts where she also knows that the skeptical hypotheses are false. It has been hoped (...) that contrastivist theories of knowledge can mirror the contextualist solution while avoiding this epistemic immodesty. I review the main problems for contrastive closure and argue that none of the arguments currently in the literature pose an insurmountable problem for the contrastivist solution. However, I argue that contrastivist theories of knowledge, like their contextualist rivals, are indeed committed to epistemic immodesty. (shrink)
One longstanding problem for glut theorists is the problem of ‘just true.’ On Beall's conservative version of glut theory advanced in Spandrels of Truth , he addresses the problem in two steps. The first is a rejection of the problem: he claims that the only general notion of ‘just true’ is just truth itself. On that view, the alleged problem of ‘just true’ is reduced to the problem of truth itself, which has a solution—glut theory. The second step is to (...) acknowledge that there is a notion of ‘just true’ which is more limited but nonetheless meets all reasonable criteria demanded by those who advance the longstanding just-true objection. Marcus Rossberg disagrees. According to Rossberg, a just-true operator ought to iterate and be non-arbitrary in ways that Beall's proposed just-true operator is not. My aim in this paper is to construct a new conditional in terms of which a new just-true operator may be defined, a necessity operator, and to show that it meets all of the target desiderata of the debate. I then use that new operator to address the arbitrariness worries raised by Rossberg. (shrink)
Is logical consistency required for a set of beliefs or propositions to be categorically coherent? An affirmative answer is often assumed by mainstream epistemologists, and yet it is unclear why. Cases like the lottery and the preface call into question the assumption that beliefs must be consistent in order to be epistemically rational. And thus it is natural to wonder why all inconsistent sets of propositions are incoherent. On the other hand, Easwaran and Fitelson have shown that particular kinds of (...) inconsistency entail the epistemically ‘irrationality’ of holding certain sets of beliefs. In cases of the latter kind of inconsistency, it seems more reasonable to insist that such sets of beliefs or propositions are categorically incoherent. What the precise relationship is between coherence and consistency depends on the nature of the coherence relation. We shall examine recent attempts to explicate the coherence relation in terms of probabilistic measures of confirmation or agreement to see what they can teach us about the relationship between coherence and consistency. We shall show that some probabilistic measures of coherence allow for inconsistent sets to be categorically coherent, while satisfying plausible epistemic rationality constraints. Other probabilistic measures of coherence impose very strong logical consistency requirements, and some measures are tolerant of most forms of inconsistency. As we try to understand what distinguishes coherence measures in this respect, we will also draw some important lessons about Bayesian confirmation measures and differences in the way that they treat contradictory propositions. (shrink)
Leading members of the Slavophile circle shared a commonWeltanschauung, fostered by a complex reaction to thesocial and political changes taking place in mid-nineteenth-centuryRussia. There was, however, considerable diversity in their views aboutthe character and value of the Russian state apparatus. While theyall criticised the bureaucratic ethos of the tsarist state,a number of them recognised that it played a critical role in stabilising deep-seated social tensions in Russian society. Inthe late 1850s, some members of the Slavophile circle also cameto recognise that (...) the state apparatus could play a positiverole in eliminating serfdom. Nevertheless, in the wake ofthe Emancipation Edict of 1861, conflict over the roleof the Russian state became the most divisive issuefor surviving members of the Slavophile circle. (shrink)
The theory of personal identity should illuminate and be illuminated by the theory of personality, of which it is a part. I believe that Locke's theory succeeds in this more than that of any other great philosopher, and the modifications which it may need are not fundamental ones. The problems raised by Butler and Flew can be made to disappear.
I defend my logic against the trenchant critique offered by Ellen Meiksins Wood and I take up the pertinent question, which she raises, of Locke's general attitude to the traditional constitution. I assume in this section, but will argue further in the next, that the mass of people were taxpayers in Locke's time. I begin, as ever, from Second Treatise ?158 and with Locke's preference for �just and lasting . . . just and undeniably equal measures�. Wood entertains the idea (...) that Locke thought that equal measures between taxpayers of different locality are of much greater importance than equal measures between taxpayers in all other respects. But this idea is surely mistaken, since Locke says nothing about rights which people have simply because of their locality and says much about the rights which all people have simply because they pay tax: it is these taxpayer rights which he depends upon even in his argument about localities. On the other hand, I think it is true that just measures for localities formed, in practical terms, the essential first step towards democratic changes: they still formed the essential first step in 1832, a fact which democrats of that time had to recognize, sometimes reluctantly. (shrink)
It is necessary that, if the world is divided into nations, conflicts should arise in which there is no strong argument against terrorism or repression. By a strong argument I mean one that would sway all minds not blindly partisan, without moral commitments that are unusual or outlandish in the modern world and with as much aversion to violence as most people have. So I do not here consider, because it is unusual, heroic and absolute pacifism, much as I respect (...) it; on the other hand I do mention Christian moral objections applying specially to terrorism because it seems somewhat outlandish even now to ignore the Christian element in our tradition. (shrink)
This case is another in a series intended to highlight the new questions emerging from advances in mapping the human genome and the application of genetic findings to clinical practice. The National Human Genome Research Institute, a component of the National Institutes of Health, by law is directed to designate a portion of its annual budget to furthering understanding of the ethical, legal, and social questions emerging from research on the human genome. As part of the effort, the Institute supports (...) research by scientists and scholars around the nation with the aim of clarifying and resolving the tough ethical and research choices facing this endeavor. But recently it has launched an intramural program, which is expected to take a catalytic role in grappling with the array of issues the researchers face in carrying out investigations in human genetics. (shrink)
Can the ontological and cosmological arguments for the existence of God, whose complex relationship was discussed by Kant, achieve more together than they can achieve apart? Yes, but what they achieve is not necessarily a proof of monotheism.
Jenefer Robinson specifies one very practical implication of her theory that literature offers an emotional education: "There is virtually nothing in [Ethan Frome and Silas Marner] for the average fifteen-year-old American (regardless of gender or ethnic background) to relate to his or her own experience" so that the reading of these two novels by fifteen-year-olds ends with "the dreadful result . . . that many kids are permanently alienated from two of the greatest novelists in the English language."1 According to (...) Robinson, the average fifteen-year-old should not read Ethan Frome and Silas Marner because he has nothing in his experience through with which these novels emotionally engage him. This claim suggests .. (shrink)
Aim: Patients with advanced cancer need information about end-of-life treatment options in order to make informed decisions. Clinicians vary in the frequency with which they initiate these discussions.Patients and methods: As part of a long-term longitudinal study, patients with an expected 2-year survival of less than 50% who had advanced gastrointestinal or lung cancer or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis were interviewed. Each patient’s medical record was reviewed at enrollment and at 3 months for evidence of the discussion of patient wishes concerning (...) ventilator support, artificial nutrition and hydration , resuscitation and hospice care. A Kaplan–Meier analysis was also performed and 2-year survival calculated.Results: 60 cancer and 32 ALS patients were enrolled. ALS patients were more likely than cancer patients to have evidence of discussion about their wishes for ventilator support , ANH , DNR and hospice care . At 6 months, 91% of ALS patients were alive compared with 62% of cancer patients; at 2 years, 63% of ALS patients were alive compared with 23% of cancer patients .Conclusions: Cancer patients were less likely than ALS patients to have had documented advanced care planning discussions despite worse survival. This may reflect perceptions that ALS has a more predictable course, that advanced cancer has a greater number of treatment options, or differing views about hope. Nevertheless, cancer patients may be less adequately prepared for end-of-life decision-making. (shrink)
A young Greek student who arrived in Cambridge thirty years ago to readfor the Classical Tripos went to Bowes and Bowes to equip himself with the necessary works of reference. Besides his Liddell and Scott and his Lewis and Short he came away with a copy of A Guide to the Classics by Michael Oakeshott and G. T. Griffith, Fellows of Gonville and Caius College, not noticing that it was subtitled ‘How to Pick the Derby Winner’. Even when an author (...) or editor is trying to avoid ambiguity there may still be questions of interpretation. The April 1926 issue of the Journal of Philosophical Studies printed three articles under the collective title ‘The Problem of Colour in Relation to the Idea of Equality’. They were the texts of papers read at a meeting of the newly founded British Institute of Philosophical Studies at the Royal Society of Arts on 16 February 1926. The title might suggest a symposium on problems discussed earlier by Goethe or later by Wittgenstein, or perhaps some investigation into the distinction between a priori and empirical concepts. The uncertainties of readers cannot have been long-lived. The symposiasts were Sir Frederick Lugard, KCMG, CB, DSO, Morris Ginsberg, MA, D.Litt. and the Hon. H. A. Wyndham. The same volume contained ‘The Primitive and the Civilized Mind’ by N. Lossky and the 1927 volume added Professor R. F. A. Hoernlé's ‘Prolegomena to the Study of the Black Man's Mind’. (shrink)