Consider the following situation. It is the first day of school, and the new third-grade students file into the classroom to be shown to their seats for the coming year. As they enter, the third-grade teacher notices one small boy who is particularly unkempt. He looks to be in desperate need of bathing, and his clothes are dirty, torn and tight-fitting. During recess, the teacher pulls aside the boy's previous teacher and asks about his wretched condition. The other teacher informs (...) her that he always looks that way, even though the boy's family is quite wealthy. The reason he appears as he does, she continues, is that the family observes an odd practice according to which the children do not receive many important things – food, clothing, bathing, even shelter – unless they specifically request them. Since the boy, like many third-graders, has little interest in bathing and clean clothes, he just never asks for them. (shrink)
Originally published in 1937, this book presents the philosophy of James Ward, the Professor of Mental Philosophy and Logic at the University of Cambridge. Ward was primarily concerned with the perceived antagonism between science and philosophy or religion, and Murray supplies a psychological background to Ward's thinking that helps to explain his interest in this topic. This book will be of value to anyone with an interest in Ward or the duality of faith and reason.
In this book G. W. Leibniz presents not only his reflections on predestination and election but also a more detailed account of the problem of evil than is found in any of his other works apart from the _Theodicy_. Surprisingly, his _Dissertation on Predestination and Grace_ has never before been published in any form. Michael J. Murray's project of translating, editing, and providing commentary for the volume will therefore attract great interest among scholars and students of Leibniz's philosophy (...) and theology. Leibniz addresses such topics as free will, moral responsibility, divine causation, justice, punishment, divine foreknowledge, and human freedom, revealing crucial aspects of the genesis of his mature metaphysics and the theological motivations behind it. (shrink)
Adapting Wittgenstein's concept of the human species as 'a ceremonial animal', Wendy James discusses in a readable and lively style the conceptual ordering of space, time, and rhythm; the mutualities of language, consciousness, ritual and religious practice; the dialectics of gender and generation; power, war, and peace; and large-scale modern social formations such as the city and the nation. The Foreword is by Michael J. Lambek, Professor of Anthropology, University of Toronto.
This is a rough translation of Michael Frede's "La théorie aristotélicienne de l'intellect agent" published in 1996. This insightful paper contains an important interpretation of Aristotle's notoriously difficult theory of the active intellect from De Anima III, 5. I worked up a translation during some research and thought others might benefit from having an English translation available (I couldn't find one after a cursory internet search). It's not perfect, but it should give one a sense for Frede's argument that (...) the agent intellect is the same as the divine intellect of Metaphysics Lambda. I welcome any comments or suggestions for improvement, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. (shrink)
This paper reports on a case study which aims to recreate the hearing voices symptom in schizophrenia. The case study was submitted for a co-curricular module at King’s College London by a first-year undergraduate Music student, Bethany James, and was created using the web application, Mahara. The core of the case study consists of a soundscape of both everyday and unusual sounds, in conjunction with an original musical composition. The paper describes the case study and discusses it using chaos (...) narrative as an analytical lens. The paper argues that the case study effectively evokes the hearing voices symptom, conveying a lucid sense of the experience to non-sufferers and thus potentially creating use value for clinicians and care workers. (shrink)
Adapting Wittgenstein's concept of the human species as 'a ceremonial animal', Wendy James writes vividly and readably. Her new overview advocates a clear line of argument: that the concept of social form is a primary key to anthropology and the human sciences as a whole. Weaving memorable ethnographic examples into her text, James brings together carefully selected historical sources as well as references to current ideas in neighbouring disciplines such as archaeology, paleoanthropology, genetics, art and material culture, ethnomusicology, (...) urban and development studies, politics, economics, psychology, and religious studies. She shows the relevance of anthropology to pressing world issues such as migration, humanitarian politics, the new reproductive technologies, and religious fundamentalism. Wendy James's engaging style will appeal to specialist and non-specialist alike. The Foreword is written by Michael J. Lambek, Professor of Anthropology, University of Toronto. (shrink)
Ethical consumption is on the rise, however little is known about the degree and the implications of the sometime conflicting sets of values held by the broad category of consumers who report consuming ethically. This paper explores convergence and divergence of ethical consumption values through a study of organic, fair trade, and local food consumers in Colorado. Using survey and focus group results, we first examine demographic and attitudinal correlates of ethical consumption. We then report evidence that while many organic, (...) fair trade, and local food consumers converge around similar values, some Colorado consumers support only local food, while opposing the consumption of organic and fair trade products. Next, we investigate how ethical consumers who converge and diverge frame their commitment to consuming ethically. The discussion and conclusion suggest that community development planners of projects that focus on ethical consumption will need to successfully traverse issues stemming from convergence and divergence to enjoy long-term sustained success. (shrink)
Bernard Stielger has recently emerged as one of the most significant and original thinkers in the new generation of French philosophers following Derrida and Deleuze.Drawing on art, anthropology, economics, cultural studies, psychoanalysis, politics and sociology, the essays in this collection, by a range of world-class specialists, are united around Stiegler's key concept of technics, which, he argues, constitutes what it is to be human.Stiegler is revealed as a thinker at the forefront of our contemporary concerns with consumerism, technology, inter-generational division, (...) political apathy and economic crisis. His ambitious project goes beyond these sources of social distress to uncover and examine precisely 'what makes life worth living'. (shrink)
This new edition of William James’s 1909 classic, A Pluralistic Universe reproduces the original text, only modernizing the spelling. The books has been annotated throughout to clarify James’s points of reference and discussion. There is a new, fuller index, a brief chronology of James’s life, and a new bibliography—chiefly based on James’s own references. The editor, H.G. Callaway, has included a new Introduction which elucidates the legacy of Jamesian pluralism to survey some related questions of contemporary (...) American society. -/- A Pluralistic Universe was the last major book James published during his life time. It is a substantial philosophical work, devoted to a thorough-going criticism of Hegelian monism and Absolutism—and the exploration of philosophical and social-theological alternatives. Our world of some one hundred years on is much the better for James’s contributions; and understanding James’s pluralism deeply contributes even now to America’s self-understanding. At present, we are more certain that American is, and is best, a pluralistic society, than we are of what particular forms our pluralism should take. Keeping an eye out for social interpretations of Jamesian pluralism, this new philosophical reading casts light on our twenty-first century alternatives by reference to prior American experience and developments. -/- . (shrink)
William James had the courage to experience the collision of European and American ways of thinking head on, and to emerge from it with a new philosophy - one displaying a remarkable vitality for dealing with the transformative issues at the core of the human condition. This easy to read introduction to his life and work explains why James' work is overwhelmingly valuable to us today in getting to grips with the spiritual dimension of human experience.
Problems of and explanations for evil -- Neo-cartesianism -- Animal suffering and the fall -- Nobility, flourishing, and immortality : animal pain and animal well-being -- Natural evil, nomic regularity, and animal suffering -- Chaos, order, and evolution -- Combining CDs.
Over the last two decades, scientific accounts of religion have received a great deal of scholarly and popular attention both because of their intrinsic interest and because they are widely as constituting a threat to the religion they analyse. The Believing Primate aims to describe and discuss these scientific accounts as well as to assess their implications. The volume begins with essays by leading scientists in the field, describing these accounts and discussing evidence in their favour. Philosophical and theological reflections (...) on these accounts follow, offered by leading philosophers, theologians, and scientists. This diverse group of scholars address some fascinating underlying questions: Do scientific accounts of religion undermine the justification of religious belief? Do such accounts show religion to be an accidental by-product of our evolutionary development? And, whilst we seem naturally disposed toward religion, would we fare better or worse without it? Bringing together dissenting perspectives, this provocative collection will serve to freshly illuminate ongoing debate on these perennial questions. (shrink)
Many defenders of libertarianism have, in recent years, come to endorse the idea that free agents are rarely able to choose otherwise than they do.1 These libertarians argue that it is often true that the beliefs and desires, or the character of a free agent are sufficient to render numerous possible choice-alternatives ineligible for the agent having them. In fact, they claim, it is frequently the case that beliefs, desires, character, etc. are sufficient to narrow the eligible alternatives to a (...) single one (I will henceforth refer to such choices as “single-option choices”). In these cases, such agents, even though they are unable to choose otherwise, are still morally responsible as long as certain conditions are met. In particular, it must be the case that the factors that narrow the available alternatives result from prior free choices of the agent (I will henceforth refer to such factors as “limiting factors”). In other words, limiting factors must be traceable to prior free choices. (shrink)
Over the last decade a handful of cognitive models of religious belief have begun to coalesce in the literature. Attempts to offer “scientific explanations of religious belief ” are nothing new, stretching back at least as far as David Hume, and perhaps as far back as Cicero. What is also not new is a belief that scientific explanations of religious belief serve in some way to undermine the justification for those beliefs.
Recent non-representationalists and metaphysical anti-realists have argued that the “Enlightenment notion” of a “God’s eye” point of view of the world is unsustainable. Deployment of conceptual schemes and/or intersubjective assent both constitute the world and fix the truth value of our statements about it. Many theists, on the contrary, hold an equally extreme realist position according to which God has a view of the world as it is “in itself" which provides an exhaustive description of the world. Furthermore, on this (...) view, God has access to this exhaustive picture because the world exists and is what it is in virtue of its being the object of divine creative intentions. For these theistic realists, truths about the world must ultimately be able to be cashed out in terms of an ontology consisting only of simple and composite substances—substances which exist in virtue of the ontological structure set out in the world via God's creative activity. As a result, on this view, the world is constituted in a way that is independent of the activity of created cognizers and their conceptualizing activity. The truth of our assertions must ultimately find its grounding in this independently constituted world. (shrink)
The existence and extent of animal suffering provides grounds for a serious evidential challenge to theism. In the wake of the Darwinian revolution, this strain of natural atheology has taken on substantially greater significance. In this essay we argue that there are at least four neo-Cartesian views on the nature of animal minds which would serve to deflect this evidential challenge.