Background: Hospital nurses are frequently the first care givers to receive a patient’s request for euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide (PAS). In France, there is no consensus over which medical practices should be considered euthanasia, and this lack of consensus blurred the debate about euthanasia and PAS legalisation. This study aimed to investigate French hospital nurses’ opinions towards both legalisations, including personal conceptions of euthanasia and working conditions and organisation. Methods: A phone survey conducted among a random national sample of 1502 (...) French hospital nurses. We studied factors associated with opinions towards euthanasia and PAS, including contextual factors related to hospital units with random-effects logistic models. Results: Overall, 48% of nurses supported legalisation of euthanasia and 29%, of PAS. Religiosity, training in pallative care/pain management and feeling competent in end-of-life care were negatively correlated with support for legalisation of both euthanasia and PAS, while nurses working at night were more prone to support legalisation of both. The support for legalisation of euthanasia and PAS was also weaker in pain treatment/palliative care and intensive care units, and it was stronger in units not benefiting from interventions of charity/religious workers and in units with more nurses. Conclusions: Many French hospital nurses uphold the legalisation of euthanasia and PAS, but these nurses may be the least likely to perform what proponents of legalisation call “good” euthanasia. Improving professional knowledge of palliative care could improve the management of end-of-life situations and help to clarify the debate over euthanasia. (shrink)
Paul of Venice’s tract on reference, a brief excerpt from his lengthy Logica Magna, deals with material, simple, and personal supposition. His treatment of these standard subjects of late medieval logic is significant because it defends the use of material signs to indicate that a term is being used in material supposition and because of its critique of Peter of Mantua’s reduction of all reference to personal reference. Paul also defends against several challenges to the common notions that terms do (...) not refer outside the context of propositions and that only the subject and predicate terms, not the copula, refer. His encyclopedic treatise was widely used in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Professor Perreiah has established a critical edition of the Latin text and it is printed opposite his readable and reliable English translation. The translation is excellent in rendering the technical terms of medieval logic into the terms of contemporary logic. The introduction could be more developed, but it is very helpful as are the notes explaining references in the text. This book is a scholarly and significant contribution to the study of medieval logic.—K. M. (shrink)
The author has set out to provide an introduction to the theory of knowledge through a more "thorough study of three of its central topics." Unfortunately, he does not accomplish this for many reasons. Arner never discusses the birth of the epistemological problem that can be traced as far back as Plato, nor does he go into the implications of the problem. He chooses rather to give a superficial introduction into some of the more common problematic themes. Assuming this cursory (...) survey of 18 pages to be sufficient he devotes the remainder of the book to an offering of sampling selections by philosophers. Considering that the author furnishes only nine readings it is disconcerting to find C. I. Lewis and H. A. Prichard represented when notably absent are thinkers of such import as Plato, James, and Husserl among others. That no fewer pages are devoted to Lewis than to Kant and Descartes is indicative that Arner has missed the target. When a series of texts is used at the introductory level to offer a clear exposition of the philosophers’ thoughts, problems, methods, and attempted solutions, it is incumbent on the author to provide a general but thorough introduction to the theme along with appropriate brief introductions accompanying the particular readings. The fact that Arner has failed to do this, paired with the brevity and insignificance of some of the selections makes this book of little value to the student who professes no prior familiarity with the epistemological question.—K.R.M. (shrink)
If there is an age in which philosophy seemed to experience a demise it is the nineteenth century, and yet this was not due to a lack of philosophy nor to the fact that there prevailed an attitude of estrangement from philosophy. Rather, what appeared to be a de-emphasis was merely a replacement of writings by "philosophers" with those by the natural scientist and the humanist. Tatarkiewicz divides his period into three phases distinguishing the era with their peculiar disciplines: 1830-60 (...) marked by positivism, empiricism, naturalism, and dialectical materialism; 1860-80 in which the minimalistic philosophy of positivism reached full bloom; 1880-1900 dominated by minimalism, positivism, scientism and in addition the appearance of opposing doctrines. Although such familiar names as Comte, Mill, Marx, Engels, Spencer, Brentano and Nietzsche find their way into Tatarkiewicz’ book, of greater significance is the manifold of less familiar figures who play a determining role in this period of philosophy. Yet it is not the author’s intent to expound individual doctrines in reference to anything but philosophical currents of the day. Tatarkiewicz focuses on times not men. A very good summary is presented at the end of the book mapping out the social, economic, political, geographic, and religious climate prevalent in the nineteenth century, thus concluding a helpful survey of a period that has been somewhat neglected in the history of philosophy.—K.R.M. (shrink)
This compact book provides a much needed study of Leibniz’ moral philosophy which, unfortunately, has not been given the attention that his metaphysics and logic have received. It is Hostler’s contention that this neglect is an indication that the moral system of Leibniz has been incorrectly viewed as tangential to his other systems which are supposed to be Leibniz’ primary concerns. On the contrary, as Hostler points out, Leibniz’ moral philosophy was largely completed before his metaphysical works which were intended (...) to provide the principles for his ethical system. As Leibniz himself says in the New Essays, "you are more in the tradition of metaphysical thought, whereas I am more interested in ethics." Hostler embarks on his task by orienting us to Leibniz’s general metaphysics and proceeds throughout the study to show the interconnection between his morals and metaphysics. Leibniz’ ethics is traditionally grounded in that he acknowledges the essential relationship between the will, reason, and desire. At the same time he breaks with tradition by introducing two apparently contradictory motives for voluntary action. On one hand he proposes an egoism which aims at one’s own welfare, and on the other hand he proposes an altruism that demands that one should seek the welfare of the other. Hostler’s analysis of the concepts of the good, pleasure, happiness, and perfection shows that the contradiction is only apparent, and that egoism and altruism are reconcilable in Leibniz’ system. The good that I seek for myself is achieved when I do good for others, because in doing good to others I realize a perfection to some degree, and my awareness of that perfection is a source of pleasure which identifies itself as the consciousness of an increase in perfection. Hostler discusses the substantive part of Leibniz’ ethics wherein we find that love tempered by prudence produces justice, the demands of which are binding on all beings possessing reason and free will. Consequently, even God is subject to the moral imperative. As the ens perfectissimum God displays both perfect benevolence and wisdom in all his activities, hence he must create the best of all possible worlds, an act that Leibniz describes as "universal justice." Ultimately it can be seen that the reconciliation between egoism and altruism is explained through the principle of pre-established harmony for what affects one affects the others and every act has infinite consequences. It is only our finite intellect that prevents us from seeing the perfection in every object and thereby choosing it. The choice of the lesser good is a manifestation of that radical finitude. Hostler has presented us with a well organized study of Leibniz’ moral philosophy and has managed to situate it in terms of his philosophy as a whole. The brevity of the volume does not diminish its worth as a fine treatment of the subject.—K.R.M. (shrink)
This is a fine work that purports to serve as an introduction to philosophic problems surveyed from the historical perspective. Hartnack chooses to focus on a single work or theme of those philosophers who have significantly contributed to the development of philosophy starting with Heraclitus and ending with Wittgenstein. He renders concise and uncomplicated accounts that capture the nucleus of the problems. What makes this book stand out among so many other similar endeavors is that the expositions are not only (...) true to the problem but, refreshingly, they say neither too little nor too much. Rather they afford the reader a taste of the author’s wares whetting the appetite to further sample the original sources in hopes of finding the solutions to the problematics offered. For the freshman with little or no previous encounter with philosophy this can be an immeasurable bonus since too often he is victimized by arid and tedious readings. Hartnack makes good use of cross referencing providing the work with a thread of continuity, and it is only in his chapter on Kant’s epistemology that we note a deficiency in this area. Had he spelled out the influence of Hume’s skepticism on Kant’s Critique he might have approached the chapter in terms of the question which seems to be most central to Kant’s project, i.e., "Is metaphysics as a science possible?" rather than start out with an analysis of the antinomies that only indirectly point to this problem. However, if there is a deficiency in this chapter, it is offset by an excellent account of Kant’s moral philosophy. Notwithstanding this negative criticism plus the fact that there are several typographical errors, this is a scholarly accomplishment and deserves to be on the bookshelf of not only the beginning philosophy student who wishes to have a viable resource but also for those who have passed beyond this stage and wish to possess a valuable reference tool. Included at the end is a short but worthwhile bibliography.—K.R.M. (shrink)
This small volume successfully captures the essential in Kant’s philosophy, his insight and understanding of the a priori as the universal and necessary condition in epistemology and ethics. Knowledge and morality, if they are to qualify as knowledge and morality, must be subjected to principles of universalizability, and it is Kant’s contribution to philosophy that he argues for the non-empirical conditions that make these possible. The author approaches Kant’s theory of knowledge from an untraditional perspective. Rather than start his inquiry (...) with a study of the Transcendental Aesthetic and Transcendental Analytic, Hartnack focuses in on the Transcendental Dialectic giving Kant’s arguments for the first two antinomies and presenting a cursory account of the paralogisms and Transcendental Idea. Hartnack defends his procedure by calling our attention to the fact that it was not primarily Hume’s attack on the necessary connexion of cause and effect that influenced Kant to undertake his transcendental criticism as many scholars believe. By Kant’s own admission which he makes clear in a letter to Christian Garve in 1798 it was the antinomy of pure reason that "first aroused me from my dogmatic slumber and drew me to the Critique of Pure Reason itself in order to resolve the scandal of ostensible contradiction of reason with itself." It was the illegitimate use of reason that prompted Kant to search out the bounds and limits to which reason could legitimately make claim to. Bearing this in mind the present study centers on the dialectical illusion of reason which necessarily implies that it has another side to it, the legitimate and regulative use of reason. Hartnack strongly emphasizes the relationship between the Transcendental Analytic and Transcendental Dialectic and the relationship of the Critique as a whole to the Critique of Practical Reason where the a priori finds its expression in the categorical imperative. The Transcendental Dialectic are as two sides of the same coin. Reason on the one side legitimately applies its categories to the empirical, conditioned, phenomenal object of sense experience. But by nature reason seeks the unempirical, unconditioned, noumenal object which by definition cannot be given, and reason by applying the categories falls prey to the antinomies, paralogisms, and transcendental Idea. Hartnack’s critical account reveals the intimate and dynamic unity within the first Critique and its unity with the Critique of Practical Reason, a synthesis of Kant’s theory of knowledge and theory of morality. Much of what is obscure and obfuscatory in the primary sources is clarified and simplified for us in this work and yet the author has sacrificed none of the depth and dimension that characterize Kant’s writings. Rather in a few pages he has managed to target in on a significant aspect that sheds light and puts into proper perspective Kant’s project as a whole. Here is a case where less is better than more.—K.R.M. (shrink)
This is a systematic and critical account of Berkeley’s philosophy of science. Brook’s intention is to evaluate Berkeley’s analysis of significant scientific concepts, his general theories in optics, physics, and mathematics, and finally Berkeley’s own interpretation and criticism of Newton’s principles. That Berkeley’s writings are pervaded with ambiguities, inconsistencies, and misinterpretations of Newton seems to be the conclusion that Brook reaches, although he does distinguish in the writings the areas in which he feels Berkeley is on target. Berkeley conceived the (...) purpose of science to be the practical mastery of nature, and his philosophy is indicative of a phase in the evolution of a "new" science that had its roots as far back as Galileo who envisioned a universe that could be read off in terms of mathematical relationships. This view entailed the overthrow of traditional physics and its concern with substantial forms and qualitative changes. As Brook points out, the object of physics for Berkeley is a phenomenal order that can at best display only uniformities, efficient causality belongs to the realm of metaphysics. Brook does not go into the metaphysical or historical foundations of Berkeley’s philosophy of science, but his first chapter on the theory of signification presents sufficient background for the more detailed and complex chapters that deal with his theory of vision, philosophy of physics and mathematics. This is not an easy book to read, and the chapter on Berkeley’s mathematics may prove to be especially difficult to those who lack an orientation to this field. Yet Brooks could hardly do better than he does considering the obscurities and obfuscatory trappings that are to be found in the primary sources from which he is working. A good bibliography is included that should serve to facilitate a reading of this book. Brook’s study is the only work to date that takes into account Berkeley’s scientific works as a whole and not just some aspects.—K.R.M. (shrink)
An enjoyable and well-written discussion of the change in the conception of politics from David Hume through Jeremy Bentham, and John Stuart Mill to Beatrice Webb. The longest, most interesting, and most useful section is on Hume, who expresses the dominant view of the eighteenth century that "man is a balanced whole whose object is to live decently and enjoyably." The discussion of Hume is the background for a less favorable consideration of Bentham, Mill, and Webb and although the latter (...) half of the book fails to match the first half in depth and interest, it remains a work which can be recommended and read with joy.—K. A. M. (shrink)
Philosophers committed to the task of coming to grips with reality must face the fact that there are no final solutions and the need to question is fundamental to their project. Taking this as his point of departure Clark proposes that questioning is not confined to the philosopher; it marks every self that is confronted with a given empirical order. Before rendering an analysis of the experience of questioning which is the main thrust of this work, Clark outlines the situation (...) of knowledge in which we find two prevailing viewpoints, the spectator approach, and the performative approach. In the former a subjectivism ensues when the knower passively receives the objects creating a solipsistic prison where the objects take residence precluding any response to the world. In this sense there is no appropriation of meanings as "mine." Clark maintains that this is not what occurs. The self does not merely stand against a world of objects, rather through his intentions he modifies the data conferring meaning on it and in doing so validates his own self. The performative account acknowledges the knower as an active constituting agent who not only intends the facts but uses them in his effort to become a self. A series of historical studies is presented examining these two viewpoints in such philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Descartes, the empiricists, and finally ending with Kant who represents the synthesis of both perspectives. Using the Critiques as his source, Clark suggests that while the theoretical reason of Kant is a spectator approach, practical reason incorporates the performative account where the "I can" verifies the active self who is responsible for its realization. Kant’s endeavor to construct a transcendental analysis is seen by Clark as primarily an enterprise to set up the necessary conditions for knowledge which can be applied in the practical order. The self only questions for a reason, so that it "can" do something. The "I can" presupposes the "I know," but the "I know" presupposes the "I ask." Clark proposes his own transcendental analysis of questioning and asks what structures are necessary for the experience of questioning in general with total disregard for the content of that question. He attempts to show that the experience involves self discovery, for what is revealed will only be revealed through further self questioning which is always subject to modification. Questioning is a unique and personal response to a world in which I find myself and yet I intend the world, bestowing on it the meaning that is necessary for my fulfillment. There is an analogy between this transcendental analysis and Kant’s, although Clark is quick to point out that he has hesitations about Kant’s treatment of time and space which he has somewhat modified to serve as the necessary structures of the experience of questioning. Philosophy has been pregnant with analyses of the self primarily as a knowing agent and perhaps it is now time for a movement towards the direction that Clark is suggesting. This book may provide the stimulus for more thought on the self as a questioner.—K. R. M. (shrink)
Stewart presents a very useful and worthwhile exposition of a part of Hume's philosophy which is often overlooked. Even if one does not share the author's view that Hume "was primarily a political and moral theorist," a reading of this work will show that Hume has much of interest of say in the area. Of particular service is the concise presentation of the more relevant parts of Hume's eight volume History of England. Stewart is a practicing politician and his book (...) clearly demonstrates that a great philosopher such as Hume affords access from many directions, and that philosophic understanding can be enriched by contributions from many sources.—K. A. M. (shrink)
In an attempt to discover that which makes man distinctively human Wilson takes as his starting point two opposing accounts of what distinguishes man from inanimate objects and indicates why both of them are invalid. The Cartesian concept maintains that man is distinct from the inanimate by virtue of his consciousness, the neo-Wittgensteinian views the distinction as one of behavior and interaction explicable in terms of reason and motives. Wilson agrees that emotion and behavior constitute the primary difference between man (...) and the inanimate but that this human type of activity is analyzable in causal terms. He refutes certain anti-causal arguments that posit a non-contingent connection between an emotion and its object. Wilson rightly points out that a necessary proposition is one that is necessarily true, but a relation cannot be true or false, and therefore cannot be necessarily or contingently true or false. In order to prove his thesis that the emotion-object relationship is one of causality the term "object" is restricted to that which has existential status. Emotions referable to non-existent objects are malfounded emotions and not causally connected. Wilson proposes that the problem does not lend itself to a logico-grammatical analysis of statements that assign objects to emotions, but that the approach requires a study in the philosophy of mind. Such an inquiry discloses that emotion is caused by a mental state, i.e., attention to the object in which a thought or belief about the object causes a certain feeling or reaction. After a rather complicated analysis of the emotion-object relationship in which he considers the questions of materialism, free will intentionality, and rationality, Wilson returns to his original concern and concludes that "a person’s action and his end of action make sense and form a coherent whole because they are rooted in a complex network of feelings and attitudes." This is what makes man distinctively human.—K. R. M. (shrink)
A scholarly account of an important and previously uninvestigated aspect of Bruno's philosophy. Yates sets out in the historian's careful way to show that "Bruno's philosophy and his religion are one and the same, and both are Hermetic." A treatment of the development of the Hermetic tradition from Ficino and Pico allows the author to show that "the philosophy of the infinite universe and the innumerable worlds... is not... scientific thinking" but a continuation of the tradition which was mistakenly thought (...) to stem from an ancient Egyptian magical religion. Although this is definitely the work of an historian, any philosopher interested in the beginnings of modern science or in Renaissance thought will find it a valuable aid and contribution.—K. A. M. (shrink)
A first attempt to give the essential characteristics of politics and the political order in the context of the most important elements of Heidegger's thought. This well-documented, systematic interpretation of Heidegger's political thought shows that his philosophical principles led to the affirmation of the first four years of national socialism and the authoritarian "Führerstaat." Unfortunately, the discussion is carried on almost entirely in Heidegger's terminology. A useful bibliography and table of Heidegger's works are included—K. A. M.
A practical book for teaching beginning speech is attached to a confusing essay in which rhetoric is said to be the means by which "Man the Talker" can overcome the "crisis in values." Lasswell's analysis of values is said to form the basis of this text book, but what relation the essay on values has to the practical speech book is not made clear.—K. A. M.
This provocative book provides a stimulating study of the self that is somewhat reminiscent of Husserl’s transcendental ego. But for Earle the ego is absolute and infinite, yet so unique and singular that it precludes any descriptive analysis in terms of a universal structure. As the primary and absolute source of objectification the ego is opposed to these "others" to which something "happens" as the necessary is opposed to the contingent. The realm of happening is the realm of existence, and (...) the ego as the constitutive agent of objects and their meanings transcends this world, and in this sense is non-existent. Yet it is, and its mode of being is "eternity." Paradoxically, the self is both absolute and independent, but so relatively dependent on others for its fulfillment that it can only realize itself as a person on the level of intersubjectivity and most significantly in transcendental love. Earle remains insistent on the incommunicability and singularity of the I and maintains that if there is no common nature in which the I partakes neither is there any universal or abstract moral ought. Value is transcendentally grounded and is what I choose it to be and what I decide ought to be. There are some valuable critical accounts found in this work on Husserl, Sartre, and a very fine in depth refutation of James’ theory of memory. For Earle memory is the one essential way for the transcendental ego to preserve itself "amid the distraction and chaos of its chosen existence." The last two chapters are devoted to a phenomenology of horror and death, and although it is somewhat unrelated to the main topic it does make interesting reading. The book is replete with rich material for critical thinking and offers a challenge to investigate the self from a new and what may appear to some a radical approach. An index facilitates the reading.—K. R. M. (shrink)
An attempt by one of the leading political scientists to "extricate from the total political reality those aspects that can be considered the fundamental processes or activities without which no political life in society could continue." The conceptual framework for a "more complex structure of a theory" is developed around the concepts of demand, support, stress, and input-output. Easton explicitly rejects the discussion of political theory in terms of what he calls political philosophy, but the work is nevertheless of interest (...) to philosophers who have the stamina and interest to wade through a long and over-drawn discussion of the nature of political life.—K. A. M. (shrink)
A comprehensive review of Marxism and its development by Engels, Lenin, and contemporary Soviet philosophers. Two sections of equal length deal with "Marxism as a Philosophy" and "Marxism as a Theory of History." The results of recent scholarship done in many parts of the world are presented in a systematic account of Marx and his relationship to Engels, Lenin and others. In post-Marxian philosophy, major emphasis is placed on the "classical" dialectical materialism, but other types of Marxism are considered as (...) well. Extensive notes and an excellent annotated bibliography are included. This volume will be of use both as a text book and as a resource to those who are interested in Marx or Marxism-Leninism.—K. A. M. (shrink)
Although Ash does put the Marxist position in language familiar to the English reader, both Marxism and moral concepts are not treated in depth. Marxism is primarily a theory which holds values are based in a direct way on economic relations. Recent advances in Marx scholarship or discussions with the Marxist movement are ignored as the attack is focused on the capitalist order.—K. A. M.
This is a fresh and stimulating analysis of the esthetic experience in terms of the import it gives to the role of "affective hazard" in the constitution of the esthetic form. The author, who comes with a background in English literature, proposes that all esthetic experiences have one common feature, their form as felt unity which endows the object with a value that distinguishes it from other objects. The experiencer as one of the terms of the relationship is confronted with (...) a manifold of elements one of which stands out in a hazardous way as an impediment to the union of the terms. Its very hazardousness, however, impregnates the whole structure, and in spite of an apparent obstruction to the order it actually bestows a balance and symmetry that would otherwise be lacking. There is a bending, but no breaking; the fragility itself is a necessary precondition for the form that constitutes the esthetic experience marking the object as a potentiality for some form yet unactualized but implicitly determined. The scholastic notion of being is evident in Slattery’s analysis of form as the principle of "unity," "intelligibility," and "determination." Rather than emphasize the static quality of things she chooses to focus on the object as both open and closed; open to receive many forms but closed in that it is only actualized as one form by a mind who at will chooses it from a manifold of other possible forms which it rejects. Unlike the Aristotelian form which inheres in the thing independent of the experiencer the form in the esthetic object is constituted by an experiencer who is an active participant in the relationship. This active term also confers upon the object its value which defines it as an object of esthetic quality. Interspersed throughout the book are descriptive analyses of various esthetic forms that illustrate what Slattery means by the decisive role of "affective hazard," and it is here that she is at her best. So well does she capture the essence of the dynamic richness peculiar to the esthetic object that she evokes in the reader an affective excitement and an awareness of a felt unity. This in itself verifies her thesis, and we could only have wished that she furnished us with more of the heightening experiences.—K. R. M. (shrink)
A series of lectures on the problems of eternal peace, the nature of democracy, the role of education, and the philosophical and political background of the first amendment. Through the discussions, the question of the role of political theory is raised.—K. A. M.
The author of Rasse, Volk, Kultur and editor of Das Deutsche in der deutschen Philosophie offers his opinions on a wide range of topics. The essence, kinds and limits of knowledge of the natural and the human sciences, and of philosophy are all "discussed" in a hundred pages. Attacks are made on pragmatism, Darwinism, atomism and behaviorism.--K. A. M.
A new translation of five dialogues of Bruno translated in 1950 by Sidney Greenberg in The Infinite in Giordano Bruno under the title "Concerning the Cause, Principle and One." A rather superficial introduction fails to substantiate the claim that the "materialistic dialectic" is the core of Bruno. It is not clear why a new translation is needed, except for the fact that Greenberg's book is unfortunately out of print.—K. A. M.
Sixteen authors ranging from Plato to Gandhi are used to provide a "comprehensive source book in the area of social and political philosophy." About forty pages of texts are provided from each author, but many of the selections have been edited extensively. Although there are no selections from the period between Aristotle and Machiavelli, more recent figures, such as Thoreau, Engels, Mussolini and Hitler are included.--K. A. M.
A thorough historical account of the unsuccessful attempt by the Philosophic Radicals to establish an independent political party in the 1830's. Although definitely an historical, rather than a philosophical treatment of the early followers of John Mill, it does give a great deal of detailed information on a relatively unknown and unsuccessful period of J. S. Mill's life—K. A. M.
A collection of articles in English, German and French by fourteen Hungarian authors. Of particular interest and value is "Über die erkenntnistheoretischen Ansichten des jungen Marx" by György Markus. Although the footnotes are full of criticisms of the "revisionists", the early Marx is taken seriously as a philosophical thinker in his own right, and an effort is made to lay out what might be a theory of knowledge for this early Marx. Other articles of interest are by Edit Rózsahegyi, "The (...) Place and Role of Purpose in the Process of Cognition" and a criticism of Heisenberg by A. Szabó. On the whole, the articles are genuinely philosophical and deserve attention, although long, boring and dogmatic pieces such as "Objective Contradiction" by G. Tamás, and "Communism and Conditions for the Development of Personality" by A. Wirth are also present.--K. A. M. (shrink)
Greenleaf combines solid historical scholarship with philosophical understanding in this useful and detailed study of political thought in 16th and 17th century England. The first half of the book reconstructs the position of the royalists and argues that the philosophical defense of absolute monarchy is much stronger than Locke would lead us to believe in his attack on Filmer. After a chapter on Bodin the empiricists are discussed as the forerunners of empirical and historical study of politics. The concluding chapter (...) summarizes the discussion and establishes the background for Locke's political writings.—K. A. M. (shrink)
The nine essays in this collection attempt to define the relationships between classical or scholastic logic and modern symbolic logic, and to apply the formal tools of logistic in the attempt to solve some of the problems with which the older logic had grappled. The first four chapters argue that there is no basic divergence between modern logistic and the classical logic; indeed, the formal parts of these chapters develop a proposed formal system of the categorical syllogism which can be (...) interpreted as a special case of the class calculus. The final five chapters deal with a variety of logico-philosophical problems, including the paradox of the "liar," the logical analysis of existence, and, somewhat informally, the problem of universals. I. M. Bochénski is the author of five of the articles.--K. P. F. (shrink)
The history of contemporary modal logic dates back to the writings of C. S. Lewis in the early part of this century. Since then, a growing body of literature has attested to professional interest in the area, and in a number of related issues in philosophical logic which have received wide attention. The recent development of powerful formal techniques for modal system building, together with an increasing interest in modal logic as a tool for philosophical analysis, have created a need (...) for an up-to-date text to introduce students to this material. Snyder's book attempts to answer this need. Assuming an understanding of elementary propositional logic, Snyder introduces a reductive technique called cancellation for detecting the theorems of a system of logic. This technique, analogous to the construction of Smullyan trees but more compact, is extended to modal and quantified contexts. Cancellation versions of the systems M and Mn of G. H. von Wright, and S4 and S5 of Lewis are developed. Snyder uses a Hintikka type of semantics, showing how the various formal systems are differentiated at the semantic level by differing conditions which must be imposed on the model systems used as interpretations for them. These model systems, and the conditions imposed upon them, are in turn described by means of a metalanguage which is essentially first-order quantificational logic. The power of this technique stems from the fact that for every object language formula of a system, there is a corresponding formula in the metalanguage which describes the conditions an interpretation must meet in order to satisfy the original formula. The conditions that the interpretations of a given system of logic must meet are reflected in this metalanguage as "antecedent assumptions," and these in turn correspond to cancellation rules for the object language. This correspondence is constructed in such a way that the metalinguistic counterpart of each theorem of the system will be a theorem of first-order logic. Snyder's primary interest is in showing how modal logic can be used, with the help of these techniques, to build a large variety of formal systems and to "tailor" such systems to meet a variety of analytical tasks. Simple modal systems are developed for the articulation of a number of modal concepts, in addition to the classic alethic ones. Examples are taken from temporal, deontic, and epistemic logic to show how specific interpretations of the meanings of the relevant operators lead to the incorporation of appropriate conditions in the formal systems used to articulate them. An entire chapter is devoted to a discussion of the paradoxes of material and strict implication, and to an attempt to articulate the notion of entailment through the development of formal systems which include a dyadic modal operator that is free of these paradoxes. The final chapter discusses such classical issues as proper names, reference, fictional entities, definite descriptions, and existence presuppositions. Appendices deal with such matters as the equivalence of the cancellation systems to more classical axiomatic-deduction systems, and the sketch of a proof of soundness and completeness for all the modal systems presented. While designed as a text, this volume should be of interest to both logicians and those working in metaphysics and language analysis, since the primary concern of the author is to develop techniques that will facilitate the usefulness of modal logic as a tool for philosophical analysis. The instructor's manual contains many suggestions derived from the author's experience in teaching this non-standard treatment of the subject.--K. T. (shrink)
Mérleg is an interesting quarterly selection of articles of general interest translated from the major Western languages into Hungarian. It is a Catholic publication for a general intellectual public and it contains besides the longer studies review articles, reviews, interviews and also short summaries. The most important articles of the two issues we are reviewing: A. Greeley, "The Sacred and the Psychedelic"; A. Plé, "The affective life of the consecrated celibate"; K. Franke, "Apology for the protection of the unborn life"; (...) "Basic issues of the Abortion Problem"; "Catechesis according to the Council"; R. Schnackenburg, "The birth of Christ without legends and Myths"; P. Caspers, "The role of the Church in Asia"; C. Aguiar, "Latin-American Catholicism"; "The Memory of Mauriac." The very difficulty of publishing in Hungarian a theologically orientated digest makes this selection dramatically sparing and it seems to give us a more coherent and more essential view of the "happenings" of the West than many of the reviews of America, France or Germany.--M. J. V. (shrink)
The first systematic study printed in the recently inaugurated "Sovietica" series, edited by J. M. Bochenski. In this volume, the author examines the basic theses of dialectical materialism and reviews the efforts of Soviet philosophers and physicists to accomodate their official philosophical framework to the challenge of Einstein's special relativity theory. The excellent handling of this subject owes much to the author's masterly grasp of physics, philosophy, and Russian.--K. R. D.
This big book is a welcome collection of some of the most important theological studies on St. Paul written by German scholars of this century. Some of the authors are among the greatest names of modern exegetical science and the present selection enables the reader to have access to a wide range of first-rate, often classical, accounts of Paulinian research, without being forced to go through the back-issues of German theological journals. Besides the classical studies, written for encyclopedical purposes, by (...) A. Schaatter and W. Wrede, we can compare A. Schweitzer's and R. Bultmann's accounts on the state of Paulinian researches. Another article of R. Bultmann is about the ethics of St. Paul while von Soden studies sacrament and ethics in the work of the apostle of the Gentiles. Other major articles are: K. Holl: Paul's concept of the Church in its relationship to the primitive Christian community; R. Reitzenstein: Paul as a pneumatician; [[sic]] M. Dibelius: Paul and the Mystic; M. Pohlenz: Paul and the Stoa; L. Baeck: The faith of Paul; G. Bornkamm: Faith and reason in Paul.--M. J. V. (shrink)
In this work R. M. Martin carries his semiotical studies into the fields of intensional semantics and pragmatics, dealing with such philosophically important concepts as meaning, preference, reasonableness and indifference. The crucial notion is that of the meaning or intension of an expression. Two major categories are distinguished, objective intensions and subjective intensions. To deal with objective intensions an intensional semantics is developed as an extension of denotational semantics in the tradition of Tarski, Carnap and Martin's earlier Truth and Denotation. (...) In the treatment of subjective intensions Martin makes an advance over his earlier study of pragmatics by utilizing the work of von Neumann and Morgenstern in their Theory of Games and Economic Behavior.—R. H. K. (shrink)
Castelli has again managed to bring together in Rome some of the greatest specialists of mythology, biblical exegesis, of the different branches of linguistics, with a generous sprinkling of philosophers, theologians, and historians. From the very large number of contributions, especially important are E. Benveniste: Blasphemy and euphemy; K. Kerényi: The language of theology and the theology of language; D. McKinnon: The problem of "the system of projection" in reference to the Christian theological affirmations; R. Panikkar: Silence and word, The (...) smile of the Buddha; B. Bäumer: The secret name in Hinduism; E. Levinas: The name of God after some rabbinical texts; S. Cotta: The name of God in juridical language; P. Ric£ur: Paternity: from the phantasm to the symbol; A. de Waelhens: Paternity and the Oedipus-complex in psychoanalysis; S. Breton: Religious language, theological language; J. Brun: The pseudonyms of God; H. Bouillard: The name of God in the Credo; G. Vahanian: Writing and history; I. Manchini: A nonreligious interpretation of God; X. Tilliette: Attempt at a transition from the God of the philosophers to the God of the Christians; M. Olivetti: The beginnings of Jacobi's philosophy of language.--M. J. V. (shrink)
With the publication of this volume from the prolific pen of one of Germany's outstanding younger philosophers, the German-speaking scholarly world has a more extensive survey of key issues in the philosophy of science than the English-speaking world. The book is the first of a comprehensive work whose title is "Problems and Results in the Philosophy of Science and Analytic Philosophy." While the title of the book under consideration shows that it is primarily concerned with scientific explanation and justification, Stegmüller (...) not merely undertakes to acquaint his readers with the most important Anglo-American developments concerning these topics, but also independently develops his own ideas with respect to them and an important, if brief, feature of the volume is an appendix in which he sets forth over thirty "problems that are either unsolved or the solution of which is controversial." Without going into substantival detail, perhaps the quickest way to indicate Stegmüller's main concerns and general orientation is to note the extent of the page references in the index of names where, in descending order, one finds the names of Carl G. Hempel, to whom the volume is dedicated, R. Carnap, N. Goodman, N. Rescher, W. V. Quine, P. Oppenheim, E. Nagel, W. Dray and K. Popper. Curiously, Stegmüller indicates that, aside from Hempel, the man who has exercised the greatest influence on him has been Sir Karl Popper, but then he limits his consideration of him mainly to Popper's early exposition of explanation by reference to the breaking of a thread, while ignoring what he has to say about such topics as falsification, induction, and the problem of demarcation. Under these circumstances it is not surprising that there are no references to P. Duhem, J. Agassi, and P. Feyerabend, but there are also none to G. Bergmann, M. Bunge, P. Frank, N. R. Hanson, A. Koyré, V. Kraft, G. Radnitzky, and J. J. C. Smart, to mention just a few.--R. F. M. (shrink)
Four essays of interest to the philosopher of science. The collection includes three short essays by L. P. Coonen, D. M. Lilly and C. DeKoninck. In the major essay, "Evolution: Scientific and Philosophical Dimensions," R. J. Nogar first presents a detailed analysis of the current status of the concept of evolution, showing that its meaning varies greatly from discipline to discipline. He argues that in view of the great stability of organic species, the consideration of evolutionary processes exclusively as space-time (...) distributions in inadequate, and needs supplementing by a concept of "nature," to explicate the relation between generator and generated, and the facts of heredity.--K. P. F. (shrink)
The present "Studienausgabe" is the fruit of over 40 years of labor on Paracelus [[sic]]. While Sudhoff's monumental edition continued by K. Goldhammer is intended to serve the specialist, Peuckert's aim is simply to make Paracelsus accessible to the philosopher and to the historian of ideas. Like Luther's, Paracelus's [[sic]] German is hardly comprehensible today; hence the editor had to "rewrite" it. The result is sound and easily understandable German. This welcome "vulgarization" should, however, have been compensated by notes: as (...) a matter of fact there are no critical or commenting notes in any of the volumes published as of now. We are promised a glossary at the end of the fifth volume, but even this will not mend the edition's essential shortcoming: a complete lack of any kind of scholarly apparatus. The first two volumes contain the major "medical" writings in chronological order. These earlier texts witness Paracelsus's emancipation from the ballast of medieval science: Galen, Avicenna, etc., and a significant turn towards a new conception of natural science in which speculation and experience are intimately interwoven. In the first volume there are several writings on Alchemy, among them the short treatise on the Three First Principles which was so heavily to influence the "pansophy" of the seventeenth century and even the great mystic of Görlitz, Jacob Boehme. The second volume contains the mature medical texts including the "Opus Paramirum," this herald of later bio-chemical thought. Obviously the real interest of the so-called medical texts lies in their speculative elements and they should be read together with the philosophical texts, making up the third volume. This third volume is rightly centered around the monumental "Philosophia Sagax," the major work of Paracelsus. This is the treatise whose influence reached far beyond the twilight of pansophy until the early and late Goethe and Romantic philosophy. Better than any other, this text demonstrates the uninterrupted continuity of German speculation throughout three centuries. If the resolution of the remaining two unpublished volumes turns out to be as fortunate as those reviewed here, these well-printed books should find their way to the shelves of any library, private or public, orientated towards the study of German philosophical thought.—M. J. V. (shrink)
Since the beginning of the 20th Century to the present day, it has rarely been doubted that whenever formal aesthetic methods meet their iconological counterparts, the two approaches appear to be mutually exclusive. In reality, though, an ahistorical concept is challenging a historical analysis of art. It is especially Susanne K. Langer´s long-overlooked system of analogies between perceptions of the world and of artistic creations that are dependent on feelings which today allows a rapprochement of these positions. Krois’s insistence on (...) a similar point supports this analysis. - I - Unbestritten bis heute gilt, formwissenschaftliche und ikonologische Methoden scheinen sich grundsätzlich auszuschließen, da die ersteren auf ahistorischen und die letzteren auf historischen Grundlagen aufbauen. Dem entgegen soll mit diesem Beitrag gezeigt werden, wie insbesondere die Forschungen Susanne K. Langers und ergänzend diejenigen von John M. Krois eine Annäherung beider Positionen ermöglichen. (shrink)
When Wittgenstein moved from Manchester to Cambridge he was following a path from the study of the natural sciences to the study of philosophy which was then not unusual, and has since become increasingly common. Russell had preceded him in that intellectual emigration and many more were to follow. Of the three philosophy departments I have been in, two were headed by natural scientists. Both my research supervisors in philosophy were natural scientists. Less surprising, but still significant, a considerable proportion (...) of Presidents of the British Society for the Philosophy of Science were originally trained as natural scientists. Yet it is a subject still unrecognized by the Royal Society. The editors of both the British Journal for the Philosophy of Science and the journal Analysis were both originally natural scientists. Eminent scientists seem to feel impelled to discuss there own subjects in a wider context of philosophy. Bohr, Schrodinger, Kilmister, Hoyle, Hawking and Penrose, are but a few from a long list. (shrink)
The comparative analysis of the approaches to philosophy and philosophizing by the two prominent Russian thinkers of the Soviet era: Evald V. Ilyenkov and Merab K. Mamardashvili. The author discusses specific methodological and conceptual features of Ilyenkov's dialectic and Mamardashvili's phenomenology, showing their theoretical and topical affinity.
Abstract Daniel H. H. Ingalls referred to Gaudap?da's M?nd?kya K?rik?, a very early Advaita text, as ? ... the most puzzling perhaps, of all Sanskrit philosophical texts?. This article shows that some of the philosophical quandaries associated with this text are the result of inappropriately imposing a graphic and prose model of textuality upon a text composed in the k?rik? (memorial verse) genre and in an oral cultural context. Developing a model of textuality consistent with the literary genre and cultural (...) context, the article is not only able to resolve some of the philosophical problems associated with the text, but also raises the possibility that this inappropriate hermeneutical process has contributed to mislabelling Gaudap?da as an idealist. (shrink)