No consensus yet exists on how to handle incidental fnd-ings in human subjects research. Yet empirical studies document IFs in a wide range of research studies, where IFs are fndings beyond the aims of the study that are of potential health or reproductive importance to the individual research participant. This paper reports recommendations of a two-year project group funded by NIH to study how to manage IFs in genetic and genomic research, as well as imaging research. We conclude that researchers (...) have an obligation to address the possibility of discovering IFs in their protocol and communications with the IRB, and in their consent forms and communications with research participants. Researchers should establish a pathway for handling IFs and communicate that to the IRB and research participants. We recommend a pathway and categorize IFs into those that must be disclosed to research participants, those that may be disclosed, and those that should not be disclosed. (shrink)
This paper attacks an account of Kant's controversial distinction between "free" and "dependent" beauty. I present three problems—The Lorland problem, The Crawford Problem, and the problem of intrinsic relation—that are shown to be a consequence of various interpretations of Kant's distinction. Next, I reconstruct Robert Wicks' well-known account of dependent beauty as "the appreciation of teleological style" and point out a key equivocation in the statement of Wicks' account: the judgment of dependent beauty can be thought to consist in comparing (...) any two objects' teleological styles either in respect of how or in respect of how well each realizes a common purpose. I argue that this equivocation forces Wicks into a dilemma: either he must assert the impossibility of ugliness or he must assert that the judgment of dependent beauty is reducible to the judgment of perfection. Either way, he denies important theoretic desiderata. (shrink)
Although computation and the science of physical systems would appear to be unrelated, there are a number of ways in which computational and physical concepts can be brought together in ways that illuminate both. This volume examines fundamental questions which connect scholars from both disciplines: is the universe a computer? Can a universal computing machine simulate every physical process? What is the source of the computational power of quantum computers? Are computational approaches to solving physical problems and paradoxes always fruitful? (...) Contributors from multiple perspectives reflecting the diversity of thought regarding these interconnections address many of the most important developments and debates within this exciting area of research. Both a reference to the state of the art and a valuable and accessible entry to interdisciplinary work, the volume will interest researchers and students working in physics, computer science, and philosophy of science and mathematics. (shrink)
This paper aims to cast doubt upon a certain way of analysing prudential value (or good for ), namely in the manner of a ‘buck-passing’ analysis. It begins by explaining why we should be interested in analyses of good for and the nature of buck-passing analyses generally (§I). It moves on to considering and rejecting two sets of buck-passing analyses. The first are analyses that are likely to be suggested by those attracted to the idea of analysing good for in (...) a buck-passing fashion (§II). The second are the buck-passing analyses of good for proposed by John Skorupski (§III), Henry Sidgwick (§IV), and Stephen Darwall (§V). Along the way the paper shows that Michael Smith’s and Peter Railton’s analyses of other concepts—analyses that could be (and have been) taken to be analyses of good for —are similarly unsuitable as analyses of it. The paper concludes by suggesting that the fact that none of the buck-passing accounts of good for considered here is satisfactory, coupled with an appreciation of the various problems that a buck-passing analysis of good for would have to avoid, suggests that we should be sceptical about the prospects of finding such an analysis and should look for one of a different type. (shrink)
Peer review is a widely accepted instrument for raising the quality of science. Peer review limits the enormous unstructured influx of information and the sheer amount of dubious data, which in its absence would plunge science into chaos. In particular, peer review offers the benefit of eliminating papers that suffer from poor craftsmanship or methodological shortcomings, especially in the experimental sciences. However, we believe that peer review is not always appropriate for the evaluation of controversial hypothetical science. We argue that (...) the process of peer review can be prone to bias towards ideas that affirm the prior convictions of reviewers and against innovation and radical new ideas. Innovative hypotheses are thus highly vulnerable to being “filtered out” or made to accord with conventional wisdom by the peer review process. Consequently, having introduced peer review, the Elsevier journal Medical Hypotheses may be unable to continue its tradition as a radical journal allowing discussion of improbable or unconventional ideas. Hence we conclude by asking the publisher to consider re-introducing the system of editorial review to Medical Hypotheses. (shrink)
This dissertation aims at forging an archetectonic link between Kant's first and third Critiques within a cognitive-semantic framework. My aim is to show how the major conceptual innovations of Kant’s third Critique can be plausibly understood in terms of the theoretical aims of the first, (Critique of Pure Reason). However, unlike other cognition-oriented approaches to Kant's third Critique, which take the point of contact between the first and third Critique's to be the first Critique's Transcendental Analytic, I link these two (...) works via the first Critique's Transcendental Dialectic, specifically its discussions of the "ideas of pure reason." -/- According to Kant, the “ideas of pure reason” (IPRs) — viz., the notions of self, world-whole, and God — are innate content-bearing entities representing three types of transempirical object, none of which are possible objects of cognition. However, although Kant denies that these rather unique content-bearers can be used for purposes of “speculative cognition,” he does think that they have an internal functional value for human cognitive systems. Although under my analysis of their functional value the IPRs subserve a highest-order aim which derives from theoretical reason — namely, to ground and optimize cognitive systematicity — their directive content in fact renders their implementation(thus their form of intentionality) more characteristic of practical reason. Kant’s positive account of reason’s “interest” in and use of the IPRs exhibits a kind of cognitive pragmatism. -/- Of utmost concern to the cognitive-semantic enterprise, as I conceive it, is the development of (what might be called) a metaphysics of intentionality. A `metaphysics of intentionality', as I use the term, refers to a coherent set of postulative propositional cognitions (or, at any rate, content-bearing entities) implemented, first, for the sake of rationally explaining the phenomenological unity and object-directed character of our perceptual states and, second, to explain why the objects represented in such states are, or must be, law-governed and thus necessarily amenable to scientific investigation. On my view, the discussions in Kant’s third Critique nontrivially contribute to the development of a metaphysics of intentionality and thus to the larger cognitive-semantic enterprise of Kant's first Critique, and it is this link that lends Kant's third Critique a cognitive significance. -/- . (shrink)
Jewish law takes an approach to self-defense that differs dramatically from the conventional assumptions of Western secular legal systems. The central theme of Talmudic jurisprudence is that self-defense rests on a duty not to stand idly by while one's neighbor suffers. “Do not stand on the blood of one's neighbor,” as the point is cryptically put in Leviticus 19:16. This way of thinking about self-defense departs in two significant ways from common Western assumptions. First, it stresses that the roots of (...) self-defense are a duty rather than a right to act; second, it treats the case of third-party defense as logically prior to the first-party case of self -defense. (shrink)
For people to live together in pluralistic communities, they must find someway to cope with the practices of others that they abhor. For that reason, tolerance has always seemed an appealing medium of accommodation. But tolerance also has its critics. One wing charges that the tolerant are too easygoing. They are insensitive to evil in their midst. At the same time, another wing attacks the tolerant for being too weak in their sentimentsof respect. “The Christian does not wish to be (...) tolerated,” as T. S. Eliot said; and by this he meant to claim, presumably, that the Christian desires respect and acceptance, and not merely the forbearance suggested by “tolerance.” To make the case for tolerance, we must engage in a three-front campaign: first, against intolerance; second, against the moral failing of indifference; and third, against the desirability of respecting and accepting everyone. The central claim in making this case will be that unlike these three competing sentiments, tolerance is a complex attitude toward the behavior and beliefs of others. Its complexity consists in both moral disapproval and the avoidance of interference. If there is a case to be made for tolerance, it must derive from this peculiar complexity. After surveying its alternatives, I will argue that the complex sentimentof tolerance is more readily praised than its alternatives. (shrink)
Michael Arbib was born in England, grew up in Australia, and studied at MIT where he received his PhD in Mathematics in 1963. He helped to found the Department of Computer and Information Science and the Center for Systems Neuroscience, the Cognitive Science Program, and the Laboratory for Perceptual Robotics at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Today he is Fletcher Jones Professor of Computer Science, a Professor of Neuroscience and the Director of the USC Brain Project at (...) the University of Southern California. The title of his first book, Brains, Machines and Mathematics , gives a good indication of his scientific interests. For all his extensive research in these areas, however, Arbib has not ignored philosophical, social, and even theological topics . Central to his work in all of these areas is the concept of schema, and this is one of the topics that we discuss here. (shrink)
This paper deals with Ludwik Fleck’s theory of thought styles and Michael Polanyi’s theory of tacit knowledge. Though both concepts have been very influential for science studies in general, and both have been subject to numerous interpretations, their accounts have, somewhat surprisingly, hardly been comparatively analyzed. Both Fleck and Polanyi relied on the physiology and psychology of the senses in order to show that scientific knowledge follows less the path of logical principles than the path of accepting or rejecting (...) specific conventions, where these may be psychologically or sociologically grounded. It is my aim to show that similarities and differences between Fleck and Polanyi are to be seen in the specific historical and political context in which they worked. Both authors, I shall argue, emphasized the relevance of perception in close connection to their respective understanding of science, freedom, and democracy. (shrink)
Suppose a fire broke out in a fertility clinic. One had time to save either a young girl, or a tray of ten human embryos. Would it be wrong to save the girl? According to Michael Sandel, the moral intuition is to save the girl; what is more, one ought to do so, and this demonstrates that human embryos do not possess full personhood, and hence deserve only limited respect and may be killed for medical research. We will argue, (...) however, that no relevant ethical implications can be drawn from the thought experiment. It demonstrates neither that one always ought to let the embryos die, nor does it allow for any general conclusion concerning the moral status of human embryos. (shrink)
I am grateful to Donald Ainslie, Lisa Austin, Michael Blake, Abraham Drassinower, David Dyzenhaus, George Fletcher, Robert Gibbs, Louis-Philippe Hodgson, Sari Kisilevsky, Dennis Klimchuk, Christopher Morris, Scott Shapiro, Horacio Spector, Sergio Tenenbaum, Malcolm Thorburn, Ernest Weinrib, Karen Weisman, and the Editors of Philosophy & Public Affairs for comments, and audiences in the UCLA Philosophy Department and Columbia Law School for their questions.
This article presents a critical analysis of two influential readings of Kant’s Second Analogy, namely, Gerd Buchdahl’s “modest reading” and Michael Friedman’s “strong reading.” After pointing out the textual and philosophical problems with each, I advance an alternative reading of the Second Analogy argument. On my reading, the Second Analogy argument proves the existence of necessary and strictly universal causal laws. This, however, does not guarantee that Kant has a solution for the problem of induction. After I explain why (...) the empirical lawfulness of nature does not guarantee the empirical uniformity of nature, I examine the modal status of empirical laws in Kant and argue contra Buchdahl and Friedman that empirical laws express two different kinds of necessity that are not reducible to each other. -/- . (shrink)
To combat the ecological crisis, fundamental change is required in how humans perceive nature. This paper proposes that the human-nature bifurcation, a metaphysical mental model that is deeply entrenched and may be environmentally unsound, stems from embodied and tacitly-held substance-biased belief systems. Process philosophy can aid us, among other things, in providing an alternative framework for reinterpreting this bifurcation by drawing an ontological bridge between humans and nature, thus providing a coherent philosophical basis for sustainable dwelling and policy-making. Michael (...) Polanyi's epistemology can further help us understand these environmentally-oriented tacit processes of knowing, and also provide a basis for the political and educational implementation of process-philosophical insights, particularly via the nudging of mental models. (shrink)
The eminent historian and philosopher of biology, Michael Ruse, has written several books that explore the relationship of evolutionary theory to its larger scientific and cultural setting. Among the questions he has investigated are: Is evolution progressive? What is its epistemological status? Most recently, in "Darwin and Design: Does Evolution have a Purpose?," Ruse has provided a history of the concept of teleology in biological thinking, especially in evolutionary theorizing. In his book, he moves quickly from Plato and Aristotle (...) to Kant and such British thinkers as Paley and Whewell. His main focus, though, is on Darwin's theory and its subsequent fate. Ruse rests his history on some shaky historical and philosophic assumptions, particularly the unexamined notion that evolutionary theory is an abstract entity that is unproblematically realized in different historical periods. He also assumes that Darwin conceived nature as if it were a Manchester spinning loom -- a clanking, dispassionate machine. A more subtle analysis, which Ruse eschews, might discover that Darwin's conception of nature owed a strong debt to German Romanticism and that he contrived to infuse nature with moral and aesthetic values, not to suck them from nature. Ruse proves he is a thinker to contend with, and this essay is quite contentious. (shrink)
This collection contains twenty-one thought-provoking essays on the controversies surrounding the moral and legal distinctions between euthanasia and "letting die." Since public awareness of this issue has increased this second edition includes nine entirely new essays which bring the treatment of the subject up-to-date. The urgency of this issue can be gauged in recent developments such as the legalization of physician-assisted suicide in the Netherlands, "how-to" manuals topping the bestseller charts in the United States, and the many headlines devoted to (...) Dr. Jack Kevorkian, who has assisted dozens of patients to die. The essays address the range of questions involved in this issue pertaining especially to the fields of medical ethics, public policymaking, and social philosophy. The discussions consider the decisions facing medical and public policymakers, how those decisions will affect the elderly and terminally ill, and the medical and legal ramifications for patients in a permanently vegetative state, as well as issues of parent/infant rights. The book is divided into two sections. The first, "Euthanasia and the Termination of Life-Prolonging Treatment" includes an examination of the 1976 Karen Quinlan Supreme Court decision and selections from the 1990 Supreme Court decision in the case of Nancy Cruzan. Featured are articles by law professor George Fletcher and philosophers Michael Tooley, James Rachels, and Bonnie Steinbock, with new articles by Rachels, and Thomas Sullivan. The second section, "Philosophical Considerations," probes more deeply into the theoretical issues raised by the killing/letting die controversy, illustrating exceptionally well the dispute between two rival theories of ethics, consequentialism and deontology. It also includes a corpus of the standard thought on the debate by Jonathan Bennet, Daniel Dinello, Jeffrie Murphy, John Harris, Philipa Foot, Richard Trammell, and N. Ann Davis, and adds articles new to this edition by Bennett, Foot, Warren Quinn, Jeff McMahan, and Judith Lichtenberg. (shrink)
Michael McKenna’s Conversation and Responsibility is an ambitious and impressive statement of a new theory of moral responsibility. McKenna’s approach builds upon the strategy advanced in P.F. Strawson’s enormously influential “Freedom and Resentment” (which was published in 1962). The account advanced aims to provide Strawson’s theory with the sort of detail that is required to fill significant gaps and respond to a wide range of criticisms and objections that have been directed against it. ....Conversation and Responsibility belongs on the (...) top shelf of any set of readings devoted to the contemporary discussion of moral responsibility. All readers, whatever their philosophical orientation may be, will find it both challenging and rewarding. Whether in the end one endorses the conversational model or not, there can be no doubt that this is a contribution that significantly advances our overall understanding of these important and complex matters. (shrink)
Michael Dummett's approach to the metaphysical issue of realism through the philosophy of language, his challenge to realism, and his philosophy of language itself are central topics in contemporary analytic philosophy and have influenced the work of other major figures such as Quine, Putnam, and Davidson. This book offers an accessible and systematic presentation of the main elements of Dummett's philosophy. This book's overarching theme is Dummett's discussion of realism: his characterization of realism, his attack on realism, and his (...) invention and exploration of the anti-realist position. This book begins by examining Dummett's views on language. Only against that setting can one fully appreciate his conception of the realism issue. With this in place, Weiss returns to Dummett's views on the nature of meaning and understanding to unfold his challenge to realism. Weiss devotes the remainder of the book to examining the anti-realist position. He discusses anti-realist theories of meaning and then investigates anti-realism's revisionary consequences. Finally, he engages with Dummett's discussion of two difficult challenges for the anti-realist: the past and mathematics. (shrink)
This is a review of Michael Devitt's collection of previously published articles entitled Putting Metaphysics First: Essays on Metaphysics and Epistemology. The review also suggests a new way of formulation the realism/anti-realism contrast on the basis of Devitt's work. This contrast is understood in terms explanatory priority: should we in a given domain begin our theorizing from metaphysics (realism) or semantics (anti-realism)?
On the 27th of October, 1949, the Department of Philosophy at the University of Manchester organized a symposium "Mind and Machine", as Michael Polanyi noted in his Personal Knowledge (1974, p. 261). This event is known, especially among scholars of Alan Turing, but it is scarcely documented. Wolfe Mays (2000) reported about the debate, which he personally had attended, and paraphrased a mimeographed document that is preserved at the Manchester University archive. He forwarded a copy to Andrew Hodges and (...) B. Jack Copeland, who in then published it on their respective websites. The basis of this interpretation here is the copy preserved in the Regenstein Library of the University of Chicago, Special Collections, Polanyi Collection (abbreviated RPC, box 22, folder 19). The same collection holds the mimeographed statement that Polanyi prepared for this symposium: "Can the mind be represented by a machine?" This text has not been studied by Polanyi scholars. (shrink)
How could a state have the moral authority to promulgate and enforce laws that citizens are thereby obliged to obey? That is the problem of political authority. The Consequentialist Explanation of Political Authority contends that great social benefits depend upon there being a state with political authority. In his book, The Problem of Political Authority, Michael Huemer considers different types of explanation of political authority and he rejects them all. I show that the objections he raises to consequentialist accounts (...) are confused and that they fail to connect with the Consequentialist Explanation of Political Authority. Huemer argues that anarchy of a particular kind would be better than the states that exist in current Western societies. I explain why that argument, if it were successful, would be an effective objection to the Consequentialist Explanation of Political Authority. (shrink)
: Michael Gazzaniga, a prominent cognitive neuroscientist, has argued against reductionist accounts of cognition. Instead, Gazzaniga defends a form of non-reductive physicalism: epistemological neuro-cognitive non-reductionism and ontological monist physicalism. His position is motivated by the theses that: cognitive phenomena can be realized by multiple neural systems; many outcomes of these systems are unpredictable; and multi-level explanations are required. Epistemological neuro-cognitive non-reductionism is presented as the most appropriate stance to account for the way in which phenomena should be explained in (...) cognitive neuroscience. In this paper, I argue, however, that a recent form of neuro-cognitive reductionism, namely neo-mechanistic reductionism accounts for the arguments presented by Gazzaniga. Thus, the theory offers a more consistent and well-articulated view of the relationship between cognitive and neural phenomena that is specifically compatible with the explanatory strategies and aims of contemporary cognitive neuroscience. Keywords: Neo-mechanistic Philosophy; Michael Gazzaniga; Non-reductionism; Reductionism; Philosophy of Cognitive Neuroscience L’antiriduzionismo neurocognitivo di Michael Gazzaniga e la sfida della riduzione neomeccanicista Riassunto: Uno dei più importanti neuroscienziati dei nostri tempi, Michael Gazzaniga, si è schierato contro una concezione riduzionista della cognizione. Al contrario Gazzaniga difende una forma di fisicalismo non-riduzionistico che risulta dalla combinazione, sul piano epistemologico, di un anti-riduzionismo cognitivo e, sul piano ontologico, di un monismo fisicalista. La sua posizione è motivata dalla tesi per cui i fenomeni cognitivi possono essere realizzati da molteplici sistemi neurali; molti esiti di tali sistemi non si possono prevedere; e sono pertanto necessarie spiegazioni a livelli plurimi. La concezione presentata come più adeguata per dare conto sul piano epistemologico di come i fenomeni dovrebbero essere spiegati all’interno delle neuroscienze cognitive è una forma di anti-riduzionismo neuro-cognitivo. In questo articolo si sostiene tuttavia che una recente forma di riduzionismo neuro-cognitivo può dare conto degli argomenti presentati da Gazzaniga. Si tratta di una teoria che offre una interpretazione maggiormente coerente ed articolata della relazione fra fenomeni cognitivi e neurali e che offre un modello di spiegazione compatibile con gli scopi esplicativi delle neuroscienze cognitive contemporanee. Parole chiave: Filosofia neomeccanicista; Michael Gazzaniga; Nonriduzionismo; Riduzionismo; Filosofia della neuroscienza cognitiva. (shrink)
In his recent writings, Sir Michael Dummett has reflected twice on the Catholic position on the morality of contraception, focusing his attention especially on Humanae Vitae’s prohibition of the contraceptive use of the birth control pill. On examination, Dummett finds this prohibition ‘incoherent’, arguing that its promulgation ‘greatly damaged the respect of the faithful for the Catholic Church’s moral teaching in general’, as well as ‘the integrity of Catholic moral theology’. Given Dummett’s earlier defense of Paul VI’s reaffirmation of (...) the Church’s traditional position on contraception in Humanae Vitae, as well as his forceful criticisms of certain liberalizing tendencies among Catholic theologians and biblical scholars, these arguments deserve to be taken seriously, and regarded as coming from a spirit of serious philosophical reflection rather than casual dissent. Nevertheless, this paper argues that they are based on a misapprehension of what is really behind the position Dummett means to be criticizing, and that when the essentials of that position are clarified the rationale behind it is safe from his objections. (shrink)
Qur'an 3:104 speaks of "commanding right and forbidding wrong" as a constitutive feature of the Muslim community. Michael Cook's careful and comprehensive study provides a wealth of information about the ways Muslims in various contexts have understood this notion. Cook also makes a number of comparative observations, and suggests that "commanding" appears to be a uniquely Muslim practice. Scholars of religious ethics should read Cook's study with great appreciation. They will also have a number of questions about his comparative (...) comments. In this article, I suggest that scholars of comparative ethics should think less about the "uniqueness" of the materials examined by Cook, and more about the ways groups of human beings discipline their members, thereby constituting and maintaining themselves as communities of virtue. (shrink)
After Heitler and London published their pioneering work on the application of quantum mechanics to chemistry in 1927, it became an almost unquestioned dogma that chemistry would soon disappear as a discipline of its own rights. Reductionism felt victorious in the hope of analytically describing the chemical bond and the structure of molecules. The old quantum theory has already produced a widely applied model for the structure of atoms and the explanation of the periodic system. This paper will show two (...) examples of the entry of quantum physics into more classical fields of chemistry: inorganic chemistry and physical chemistry. Due to their professional networking, George Hevesy and Michael Polanyi found their ways to Niels Bohr and Fritz London, respectively, to cooperate in solving together some problems of classical chemistry. Their works on rare earth elements and adsorption theory throws light to the application of quantum physics outside the reductionist areas. They support the heuristic and persuasive value of quantum thinking in the 1920–1930s. Looking at Polanyi’s later oeuvre, his experience with adsorption theory could be a starting point of his non-justificationist philosophy. (shrink)
This paper is a study of the place of luminosity in the films of Michael Mann and the way in which luminosity is not a tool of illumination but a radiance that signals the bodying forth of appearances. The event of luminosity in Mann's films is an attempt to re-imagine the conventional value structures that create a link between film and indexicality, as if his admiration for the photoreal effects of film belies an insistence that the advenience of an (...) appearance is what eventuates when objects ingress between reference and expression, between realism and dream. By using the most advanced high definition digital cameras to film his nightscapes - and his movies more generally - Mann defeats the illuminatory and transcriptual demands of a filmic iconography that rely on the power of light to tether a representation to a thing in the world. In doing so, however, he neither refuses nor rejects the power of representation as such. His picturing of luminous nightscapes in cities, for instance, transubstantiates the objecthood of urban spaces so that the iridescence of the lights makes the city feel at once vivid and unlike any object that might exist in the world. I conclude that Mann's commitment to filming luminosity presents a problem to the dominant methodologies for the analysis of aesthetics and politics that offer a moral theory of the image. Michael Mann's films, finally, offer an alternative to the moral theory of the image: a politics of appearances rooted in the experience of advenience. (shrink)
Imagine putting together a jigsaw puzzle that works like the board game in the movie “Jumanji”: When you finish, whatever the puzzle portrays becomes real. The children playing “Jumanji” learn to prepare for the reality that emerges from the next throw of the dice. But how would this work for the puzzle of scientific research? How do you prepare for unlocking the secrets of the atom, or assembling from the bottom-up nanotechnologies with unforeseen properties – especially when completion of such (...) puzzles lies decades after the first scattered pieces are tentatively assembled? In the inaugural issue of this journal, Michael Polanyi argued that because the progress of science is unpredictable, society must only move forward with solving the puzzle until the picture completes itself. Decades earlier, Frederick Soddy argued that once the potential for danger reveals itself, one must reorient the whole of one’s work to avoid it. While both scientists stake out extreme positions, Soddy’s approach – together with the action taken by the like-minded Leo Szilard – provides a foundation for the anticipatory governance of emerging technologies. This paper narrates the intertwining stories of Polanyi, Soddy and Szilard, revealing how anticipation influenced governance in the case of atomic weapons and how Polanyi’s claim in “The Republic of Science” of an unpredictable and hence ungovernable science is faulty on multiple levels. (shrink)
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)
Neste artigo pretendo apresentar a crítica de Michael Sandel à concepção de pessoa na filosofia política de John Rawls. Para tanto, é preciso descrever, em linhas gerais, a descrição rawlsiana das partes na posição original. Esta descrição, segundo Sandel, pressupõe uma concepção metafísica de pessoa na medida em que apresenta o “eu anterior a seus fins”, ou seja, um “eu distinto dos fins que possui”, mas que detém a posse de tais fins. Sandel argumenta que o “eu”, pensado desta (...) forma, constitui-se como um “eu radicalmente desprovido de corpo”, pois não está inserido em sua situação. E, como solução, Sandel sugere que o eu seja um entendido enquanto “eu situado” nas práticas sociais existentes e, por isso, constituído de seus fins e não, simplesmente, distinto deles. Sandel argumenta a favor da noção de “autoconhecimento” como elemento de reconhecimento dos vínculos constitutivos do “eu” dentro da comunidade. Com base nestas criticas, Rawls responde que a sua abordagem está restrita á concepção política de pessoa e, não necessariamente, possui implicação metafísica. Ele sugere que a sua justificação para a concepção política de pessoa encontra-se fundamentada na cultura pública democrática que enfatiza o pluralismo razoável como um fato da vida moderna, mas, ainda assim, Rawls terá que responder aos questionamentos de Sandel quanto à explicação que ele dá como justificação pública para as instituições democráticas, dentro das quais, as concepções políticas de pessoa e de justiça se desenvolvem. Summary: This paper deals with Michael Sandel’s criticism to the conception of person in John Rawls’ political philosophy. I will make a presentation of Rawls’ position initial and then to analyse the reply of Sandel by focusing on the question concerning the metaphysical conception of person. Then I will present Rawls’ answer to the question as a political conception of person and the limits of such proposal concerning the public justification of democratic institutions. Keywords : Michael Sandel. John Rawls. Justiça. Person. Community. (shrink)
This essay presents an integrated account of Michael Wyschogrod's Zionism as a function of his broader theological anthropology, eschatology, and carnal interpretation of Israel's election. Against Leora Batnitzky, I show that Wyschogrod's Zionism, while definitively messianic, is decidedly not fanatical or fundamentalist. Against Meir Soloveichik, I show that Wyschogrod has maintained this non-fanatical messianism consistently throughout his career, and so his pacific political prescriptions are organically at one with his vigorous calls for Jewish sovereignty over the land.
Ever since the publication of 'Truth' in 1959 Sir Michael Dummett has been acknowledged as one of the most profoundly creative and influential of contemporary philosophers. His contributions to the philosophy of thought and language, logic, the philosophy of mathematics, and metaphysics have set the terms of some of most fruitful discussions in philosophy. His work on Frege stands unparalleled, both as landmark in the history of philosophy and as a deep reflection on the defining commitments of the analytic (...) school.This volume of specially composed essays on Dummett's philosophy presents a new perspective on his achievements, and provides a focus for further research fully informed by the Dummett's most recent publications. Collectively the essays in philosophy of mathematics provide the most sustained discussion to date of the role of Dummett's diagnosis of the root of the logico-mathematical paradoxes in his case for an intuitionist revision of classical mathematics. The themes of other essays include a fundamental challenge to Dummett's Fregean understanding of predication, and a criticism of his case for logical revision outside of mathematics. (shrink)
This paper discusses how Wittgenstein’s thinking informs recent conversations about art and aesthetic practice by examining his influence on the work of the noted modernist art critic, Michael Fried. Fried considers an excerpt from Wittgenstein’s Culture and Value, with a puzzling thought experiment, to help us see more clearly the Canadian artist Jeff Wall’s photographic vision and aesthetic. I consider Fried’s account of the photographic practice of Jeff Wall, especially his photograph Morning Cleaning, Mies van der Rohe Foundation (1999).
According to communitarian antiliberals, liberalism is fatally marred by a false metaphysics of the self. Liberalism, communitarians charge, regards the self as atomistic, isolated, presocial, ahistorical, “Cartesian,” Crusoeesque, essentially independent of other selves—in Michael Sandel's felicitous word, “unencumbered.” In reality, the self is constituted by relationships with others, hence by its contingent history. The self is fundamentally historical and social, and a true metaphysics of the self would, in the words of George Fletcher, take “relationships as logically prior (...) to the individual.” Sandel puts it thus: “Can we view ourselves as independent selves, independent in the sense that our identity is never attached to our aims and attachments? I do not think we can….”. (shrink)