Introduction Future HIV vaccine efficacy trials with adolescents will need to ensure that participants comprehend study concepts in order to confer true informed assent. A Hepatitis B vaccine trial with adolescents offers valuable opportunity to test youth understanding of vaccine trial requirements in general. Methods Youth reviewed a simplified assent form with study investigators and then completed a comprehension questionnaire. Once enrolled, all youth were tested for HIV and confirmed to be HIV-negative. Results 123 youth completed the questionnaire (mean age=15 (...) years; 63% male; 70% Hispanic). Overall, only 69 (56%) youth answered all six questions correctly. Conclusions Youth enrolled in a Hepatitis B vaccine trial demonstrated variable comprehension of the study design and various methodological concepts, such as treatment group masking. (shrink)
This is the collection of essays presented to Bochenski on his 60th birthday, and it contains, as a mirror of Bochenski's own work, a broad spectrum of studies ranging from formal logic and history of logic, to the philosophy of logic and language, and to the methodology of explanation in Greek philosophy. Of the seventeen articles, these are some of the more important to the reviewer: "Betrachtungen zum Sequenzen Kalkül" by Paul Bernays, which is an extensive study of Gentzen-type formulations (...) of logic; "Remarks on Formal Deduction," H. B. Curry, a further discussion of sequenzen-logics; "Marginalia on Gentzen's Sequenzen Kalkül" by Hughes Leblanc; "Method and Logic in Presocratic Explanation," Jerry Stannard; "On the Logic of Preference and Choice," H. S. Houthakker, a suggestive presentation of decision and utility theory in logical form; "Leibniz's Law in Belief Contexts," Chisholm; "On Ontology and the Province of Logic," R. M. Martin; and "N. A. Vasilev and the Development of Many-valued Logics," G. L. Kline, an important addition to the history of logic. Other contributors are: Storrs McCall, Albert Menne, E. W. Beth, Benson Mates, Ivo Thomas, J. F. Staal, F. R. Barbò, A.-T. Tymieniecka, and N. M. Luyten. There is a bibliography of Bochenski's writings through 1962.—P. J. M. (shrink)
The thesis of this book is that moral evil is for Kant an ineradicable aspect of human existence; moreover the author argues that moral evil is a datum of experience which none of the rationalist systems which preceded Kant's, nor Hegel's system which came after, could assimilate, a rock upon which they all shattered. Reboul's concern is to investigate the "insondable profondeur du mal radical" as this theme appears in the forty years of Kant's active philosophic production; his interest reflects (...) the influence of his mentor, Karl Barth. Reboul is at his best in his clear depiction of Kant's ingenuity at reconciling the optimism of the Enlightenment with the Reformation's conviction of sin. For example, the very insufficiency of Leibniz' attempt to supply a ground for every decision of the will, his inability to explain the reality of willful evil, is used by Kant as an excuse for not going beyond Leibniz' theory. "Expliquer la liberté serait la détruire," writes Reboul. Kant assimilates the idea of progress by assigning it to the level of phenomenal or technical improvements. Moral value resides only in those acts by which we loosen the ties of sensible determination upon the will and render ourselves autonomous. The struggle for autonomy must be fought by each man for himself; there is a decisive limit to the help we can derive from "progress." For Kant man is bent towards evil not only by reason of his spontaneous attraction to sensible objects, but also in virtue of a basic perversion of his faculty of judgment, a perversion which comes close to being identified with liberty itself. It is significant, as Reboul notes, that all of Kant's examples of free will are also examples of moral evil. This low estimate of man's spontaneous faculties is at the basis of Kant's suspicion of all eudaimonistic ethics, his demand that every moral decision be "disinterested," that the moral law be the sole determinant of the will. Just as in the first Critique Kant insists on finding an adequate cause to ground the universality which attaches to the laws of science and mathematics, so in ethics he demands an adequate explanation of the radical character of evil present in the world; this he finds in a perversion of the human faculty of judgment, whereby a contingent element of experience is illegitimately raised to the status of a universal maxim by the will. The moral decision must be disinterested because every attraction by a sensible object threatens to become the occasion for such a definitive fixation of our moral character. But Kant's deeper originality lies in a view which bridges the Enlightenment and later periods. Kant breaks with a convention of systematic philosophical activity which had held sway from the Greeks through Leibniz, the view that reality must be consistent. For Kant, the principle of non-contradiction does not apply to the phenomenal world but only to the noumenal. For Kant, human existence can harbor contradictions; consequently man lives perpetually in tension. As a citizen of two worlds, he is committed to achieving a moral ideal which the basic perversion of his will renders unrealizable. This tension can be viewed optimistically, as with Hegel ; then the "positivity" of evil is interpreted as a necessary step, a " felix culpa," by which God rouses man to greater efforts and brings him to maturity, autonomy, and a vision of the real. The other alternative is the Schopenhauerian interpretation, wherein the tensions in the absurdity of the human condition are taken as too extreme to warrant further participation. Reboul is excellent in showing the form these tensions take in Kant's system: the mystery of how a basically perverted will can be converted into a "good faith," although this is the ethical command; the command never to feel oneself "justified" through having done one's duty, even though the moral command obligates us to strive perpetually for this condition. However, in stressing the harsh import of sin for Kant, and thus saving Kant from Hegel, has Reboul not placed Kant in the company of Schopenhauer, Sartre, and Camus?--P. M. (shrink)
Authentic existentialism turns out to be Thomism interpreted in the tradition of Maritain. The primacy of existence over essence is affirmed, but in such a way as to preserve essences and intelligibility. Philosophical positions outside the Thomist family are brought in only where they support the author's argument, never as serious alternative analyses of existence. Plato is distilled down to the idea that there are some relatively permanent aspects of reality after all, and Sartre appears simply as a modern Heraclitean (...) who sees that change permeates reality. The presentation and elaboration of the basic Thomist categories is clear; and the frequent summarization of the argument is helpful, making the book a good introduction to Thomist thinking if not to metaphysics or existentialism more broadly conceived.—P. M. (shrink)
Professor Lanczos combines an introduction to the special and general theories of relativity, geared to the layman's understanding, with an eulogy of Einstein and an appeal for a return to the speculative rather than the positivistic approach to physics. This layman found the theoretical explanations simple and clear, which, no doubt, makes them inappropriate for the advanced student.—P. M.
The two pieces translated here, "Philosophy as a Rigorous Science" and "Philosophy and the Crisis of European Man" represent one of the earliest and one of the latest presentations by Husserl of the discipline of phenomenology. The first essay sets up his phenomenological method over against naturalism, psychologism, historicism, and Weltanschauung philosophy as the only way to secure a rigorous scientific basis for philosophy. The second essay was a lecture which introduced the major ideas of his last work, Die Krisis (...) der europäischen Wissenschaften und die transzendentale Phänomenologie. In it he identifies the telos of European civilization as the infinity contained in the ideas of reason. Modern European man's current spiritual crisis stems from his having naturalized the spirit making it a function of or an extension from the physical world. Only by returning to a spirit-centered science with the infinite task of exploring the ideal world of spirit of which nature is but a part can European man harmonize himself with his telos and resolve his spiritual crisis. Lauer's introduction to the whole of Husserl's philosophy is helpful.—P. M. (shrink)
Although ostensibly defending speculative philosophy, Reck is doubtful that any unprejudiced speculative philosophy can exist: "No matter how much a philosopher may strive for neutrality, his test for the true philosophy is always predicated on the assumptions that his conception of being presents being as it is and that the conceptions of being his rivals uphold are partial or false." In the pursuit of neutrality, Reck attempts a mere chronicle of the distinctive conceptions of being which he feels have animated (...) the various metaphysical traditions: "Realism holds that whatever is in any sense is real; idealism that mind and its content alone are real; materialism that matter and its patterns alone are real; and process philosophy that process and the factors in process are real." The historical development of each of the four types is presented in masterly fashion. This book truly stands head and shoulders over its nearest rival in the Metaphilosophical literature for the depth of historical comprehension, the brilliant but controlled use made of a wealth of scholarship. A graduate student reviewing for comprehensive exams could do worse than to use Reck’s book. Those systems motivated at least in part by the drive-to-synthesis are disqualified a priori of being viable alternatives, motivated by distinctive intuitions. Realism, further, is found to have an inherent difficulty: "The task for the realist is to explain how the different levels or kinds of being can be related in a hierarchically ordered cosmos. The task is nothing short of explicating the bond of being." When Leibniz tries to relate finite particulars through a "Supreme Monad," he is faulted for "veering dangerously" close to Monism. Sympathetic toward Realism, Reck suggests a modification of Leibniz’s theory: not a rendering of the relations between man and God less mechanical, but a reduction of the "first Monad" from being supreme to a finite particular, struggling, like us, to overcome the hindrances posed by his environment. Reck concedes that the cognitive use of speculative philosophy, even when it redefines its project as Metaphilosophy, may be "futile"; however, he underscores the aesthetic value of the various systems, as Santayana would, when we can "bracket" the question of existence or truth and simply contemplate these cultural masterpieces as pure "essences." "Happy are those students who can suspend their critical search for truth sufficiently to savor the aesthetic values the systems of philosophy contain!" Reck refrains from judging between rival theories because such a judgment is always delivered from a view of what one takes to exist; and the impulse to go beyond "essence" to "existence" is, as Santayana teaches, prompted by fear, pain, instinct, or necessity. Rather than being a disinterested wonder at what "is," this passion is an "irrational agency of animal faith." "Needless to add," writes Reck, "animal faith is no more trustworthy than God’s existence to guarantee the truth of knowledge." This view can raise problems for Reck’s "finite" god. The finite god he prefers is perhaps "strong" enough to provide enough interconnection between existing particulars to justify a "Metaphilosophical" science, if not a properly "Philosophical" one, in the traditional sense; Reck could point to his own successful Metaphilosophy as evidence that his "god" is at least this strong. But isn't even this finite god an existential belief which, as the basis for a criticism, compromises one’s neutrality and thus constitutes a flaw in one’s Metaphilosophical theory? Is it possible that a totally adequate Metaphilosophical theory, on Reck’s canons, could not save enough interconnection between particulars to justify even a Metaphilosophy, as well as a Philosophy?—P. M. (shrink)
Contrary to the implications of its title, this volume does little to trace actual historical influences. It rather is concerned to compare classical Greek thought from the Milesians through Plato with teachings of Zoroaster. The author urges that divine revelation recurs cyclically through such prophets as Zoroaster, giving to mankind directly the ultimate premisses necessary for the development of human thought and culture. In the absence of such direct revelation, man must search dialectically for these ultimate premisses as the Greeks (...) did. However the dialectical search for first principles can succeed in finding premisses of spiritual ultimacy and adequacy for thought and culture only if it pays attention to religious transmissions of divine revelation, which it may test and confirm. The book is weak in historical and philosophical arguments for the author's central theses. What value it may have lies in its elucidation of Zoroaster's teachings vis-à-vis the Greeks.—P. M. (shrink)
The series of five short lectures were delivered by Husserl in 1907 and contain his first ex position of the phenomenological reduction that was basic to his later philosophy. Also included is Husserl's own brief summary of the lectures, which together with the translator's introduction make this book valuable as a simple concise account of Husserl's phenomenological method.—P. M.
The eleven papers in this volume were initially presented at one or another of the Marquette University Workshops in Philosophy held in recent years. The majority of the papers are written from the point of view of Aristotelian realism, with physicist Eugene Wigner's Kantian interpretation of science and George Shrader's idealistic reduction of value to meaning as notable exceptions. Two of the most original contributions are by Paul Weiss on "The Elements of the Physical Universe" and Robert J. Henle on (...) "Man's Knowledges of Physical Reality." Both of these stress the multiple facets of physical reality revealed by multiple cognitive approaches to it. Several other papers are of value primarily in interpreting classical and medieval positions on sensation and demonstration.—P. M. (shrink)
Father Klubertanz has written a work of concrete and practical philosophy that is not without theoretical value. The philosophical background of the work is the Aristotelian-Thomistic conceptions of habit and virtue, i.e., the acquired internal principles of human activity, good and bad. The traditional doctrines are flexibly elaborated to interpret more modern studies in psychology in the context of moral theory. The book helps to fill an important but currently rather neglected part of ethics, namely the shaping of the personality (...) of the ethical agent in relation to the ethical good, which is one part of relating the "is" and the "ought." Klubertanz recognizes that different habits may be mutually exclusive, but not that virtues themselves may be at odds. What one misses in the book is a recognition of the elements of sacrifice, decision, and creativity in the formation of personality.—P. M. (shrink)
The author sees his work as uniting the philosophy of mind and computer research. Each of these fields can benefit the other, philosophy of mind providing conceptual analyses and computers providing models for understanding human mental processes. A case in point providing the focus of this book is the problem of the mechanical simulation of the human ability to recognize handwritten script. Present difficulties in designing machines that can read human script point to a conceptual muddle in which classification and (...) recognition are confused. The author untangles the confusion by ordinary language analysis and then speculates as to how a more successful machine for recognizing the letters of human script might be designed. The language analysis is somewhat tedious, but the speculations about perceptual acts and mechanical letter recognition are intriguing.—P. M. (shrink)
Kaufmann's reinterpretation of Hegel's philosophy is based upon insights into the man Hegel and his situation gleaned from letters and other documents not available to or else not used by earlier commentators. Translations by Kaufmann of some of these letters as well as a new translation of the Preface to the Phenomenology are contained in the book. The author is concerned to explode the existentialist myth of a passionless, abstracted, professorial Hegel. Rather we should read Hegel as a man of (...) concrete insight and fluid thought who sometimes, however, cramped his style by an overly disciplined systematic ideal of philosophy. "The System" was never intended to be the final rigid structure of knowledge it is often construed to be. Kaufmann at times gets bogged down in philological minutiae at the expense of expounding the content of Hegel's thought, but he does provide a helpful background to supplement and sometimes correct previous commentaries.—P.M. (shrink)
Le XI.ème Congrès International de Philosophie Médiévale de la Société Internationale pour l’Étude de la Philosophie Médiévale (S.I.E.P.M..) s’est déroulé à Porto (Portugal), du 26 au 30 août 2002, sous le thème général: Intellect et Imagination dans la Philosophie Médiévale. A partir des héritages platonicien, aristotélicien, stoïcien, ou néo-platonicien (dans leurs variantes grecques, latines, arabes, juives), la conceptualisation et la problématisation de l’imagination et de l’intellect, ou même des facultés de l’âme en général, apparaissaient comme une ouverture possible pour aborder (...) les principaux points de la pensée médiévale. Les Actes du congrès montrent que « imagination » et « intellect » sont porteurs d’une richesse philosophique extraordinaire dans l’économie de la philosophie médiévale et de la constitution de ses spécificités historiques. Dans sa signification la plus large, la théorisation de ces deux facultés de l’âme permet de dédoubler le débat en au moins six grands domaines: — la relation avec le sensible, où la fantaisie/l’imagination joue le rôle de médiation dans la perception du monde et dans la constitution de la connaissance ; — la réflexion sur l’acte de connaître et la découverte de soi en tant que sujet de pensée ; — la position dans la nature, dans le cosmos, et dans le temps de celui qui pense et qui connaît par les sens externes, internes et par l’intellect ; — la recherche d’un fondement pour la connaissance et l’action, par la possibilité du dépassement de la distante proximité du transcendant, de l’absolu, de la vérité et du bien ; — la réalisation de la félicité en tant qu’objectif ultime, de même que la découverte d’une tendance au dépassement actif ou mystique de toutes les limites naturelles et des facultés de l’âme ; — la constitution de théories de l’image, sensible ou intellectuelle, et de ses fonctions. Les 3 volumes d’Actes incluent les 16 leçons plénières et 112 communications, ainsi que les index correspondants (manuscrits ; noms anciens et médiévaux ; noms modernes ; auteurs). Le volume IV des Actes, contenant 39 communications et des index, est publié par la revue " Mediaevalia. Textos e Estudos ", du Gabinete de Filosofia Medieval de l’Universidade do Porto (volume 23, de 2004). Ouvrage publié avec l’appui de l’Universidade do Porto, de la Faculdade de Letras da U.P., du Departamento de Filosofia - F.L.U.P. et de la Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (Portugal). (shrink)
Throughout its history philosophy has been thought to be a member of a community of intellectual disciplines united by their common pursuit of knowledge. It has sometimes been thought to be the queen of the sciences, at other times merely their under-labourer. But irrespective of its social status, it was held to be a participant in the quest for knowledge – a cognitive discipline.
H.B.D. Kettlewell is best known for his pioneering work on the phenomenon of industrial melanism, which began shortly after his appointment in 1951 as a Nuffield Foundation research worker in E.B. Ford's newly formed sub-department of genetics at the University of Oxford. In the years since, a legend has formed around these investigations, one that portrays them as a success story of the 'Oxford School of Ecological Genetics', emphasizes Ford's intellectual contribution, and minimizes reference to assistance provided by others. The (...) following essay reviews the important influence Ford, E.A. Cockayne, and P.M. Sheppard played in Kettlewell's research, leading up to his most famous experiments in 1953. It documents several reasons for doubting that Ford was as intellectually involved in the design of these investigations as he has previously been portrayed. It clarifies Kettlewell's intellectual contribution to the investigations for which he is famous, as well as the pivotal roles Cockayne and Sheppard played in the design, execution and interpretation of these investigations. (shrink)
Wittgenstein's Method: Neglected Aspects By Gordon Baker. Oxford: Blackwell, 2004 pp. 328. £40.00 HB.. Wittgenstein's Copernican Revolution: The Question of Linguistic Idealism By Ilham Dilman. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2002. pp. 240. £52.50 HB. Wittgenstein: Connections and Controversies By P. M. S. Hacker. Oxford: Oxford University Press,. pp. 400. £45.00 HB; £19.99 PB. Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations: An Introduction By David G. Stern. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004. pp. 224. £40.00 HB; £10.99 PB.
In the preface to the Tractatus Wittgenstein acknowledged ‘Frege's great works’ as one of the two primary stimulations for his thoughts. Throughout his life he admired Frege both as a great thinker and as a great stylist. This much is indisputable. What is disputable is how he viewed his own philosophical work in relation to Frege's and, equally, how we should view his work in this respect. Some followers of Frege are inclined to think that Wittgenstein's work builds on or (...) complements that of Frege. If that were true it would be plausible to suppose that the joint legacy of these two great philosophers can provide a coherent foundation for our own endeavours. But it is debatable whether their fundamental ideas can be synthesized thus. The philosophy of Wittgenstein, both early and late, is propounded to a very large extent in opposition to Frege's. They can no more be mixed than oil and water – or so I shall argue. (shrink)
In recent years philosophers have given much attention to the ‘ontological problem’ of events. Donald Davidson puts the matter thus: ‘the assumption, ontological and metaphysical, that there are events is one without which we cannot make sense of much of our common talk; or so, at any rate, I have been arguing. I do not know of any better, or further, way of showing what there is’. It might be thought bizarre to assign to philosophers the task of ‘showing what (...) there is’. They have not distinguished themselves by the discovery of new elements, new species or new continents, nor even of new categories, although there has often been more dreamt of in their philosophies than can be found in heaven or earth. It might appear even stranger to think that one can show what there actually is by arguing that the existence of something needs to be assumed in order for certain sentences to make sense. More than anything, the sober reader will doubtlessly be amazed that we need to assume , after lengthy argument, ‘that there are events’. (shrink)
Bhattacharyya, K. The Advaita concept of subjectivity.--Deutsch, E. Reflections on some aspects of the theory of rasa.--Nakamura, H. The dawn of modern thought in the East.--Organ, T. Causality, Indian and Greek.--Chatterjee, M. On types of classification.--Lacombe, O. Transcendental imagination.--Bahm, A. J. Standards for comparative philosophy.--Herring, H. Appearance, its significance and meaning in the history of philosophy.--Chang Chung-yuan. Pre-rational harmony in Heidegger's essential thinking and Chʼan thought.--Staal, J. F. Making sense of the Buddhist tetralemma.--Enomiya-Lassalle, H. M. The mysticism of Carl Albrecht (...) and Zen.--Parrinder, G. The nature of mysticism.--Cairns, G. E. Axiological contributions of East and West to the spiritual development of mankind.--Mayeda, S. Śaṇkara's view of ethics.--Mercier, A. On peace.--Barlingay, S. S. A discussion of some aspects of Gaudapāda's philosophy. (shrink)
In this long and detailed book Bennett and Hacker set themselves two ambitious tasks. The first is to offer a philosophical critique of, what they argue are, philosophical confusions within contemporary cognitive neuroscience. The second is to present a ‘conceptual reference work for cognitive neuroscientists who wish to check the contour lines of the psychological concept relevant to their investigation’ (p.7). In the process they cover an astonishing amount of material. The first two chapters present a critical history of neuroscience (...) from Aristotle to Sherrington, Eccles and Penfield. Chapter three (to which I shall return), offers the philosophical basis for much of the book. Chapters four to twelve present detailed philosophical criticisms of a wide variety of neuroscientists (and some philosophers) on a large number of topics. These include: Crick, Damasio, Edelman, Marr and Frisby on perception (particularly the primary/secondary quality distinction and the binding problem); Milner, Squire and Kandel on memory; Blakemore and others on mental imagery; LaDoux and Damasio on the emotions; Libet on voluntary movement; and Baars, Crick, Edelman, Damasio, Penrose, Searle, Chalmers, and Nagel on consciousness (with a great deal on qualia and self-consciousness). Chapters thirteen and fourteen, along with the two appendices, contain an elaboration and defence of the book’s methodology and present explicit contrasts with the Churchlands, Dennett and Searle. Bennett and Hacker maintain that whilst neuroscientists have made significant discoveries concerning the workings of the brain, these discoveries have been obscured by their presentation within an incoherent conceptual framework. Their complaints, therefore, are often not with neuroscience itself but with what might be called its philosophical self image. (shrink)
In ‘Wittgenstein on Language and Rules’, Professor N. Malcolm took us to task for misinterpreting Wittgenstein's arguments on the relationship between the concept of following a rule and the concept of community agreement on what counts as following a given rule. Not that we denied that there are any grammatical connections between these concepts. On the contrary, we emphasized that a rule and an act in accord with it make contact in language. Moreover we argued that agreement in judgments and (...) in definitions is indeed necessary for a shared language. But we denied that the concept of a language is so tightly interwoven with the concept of a community of speakers as to preclude its applicabilty to someone whose use of signs is not shared by others. Malcolm holds that ‘This is an unwitting reduction of Wittgenstein's originality. That human agreement is necessary for “shared” language is not so striking a thought as that it is essential for language simpliciter.’ Though less striking, we believe that it has the merit of being a true thought. We shall once more try to show both that it is correct, and that it is a correct account of Wittgenstein's arguments. (shrink)
While thinking philosophically we see problems in places where there are none. It is for philosophy to show that there are no problems. Those of us who are not colour blind have a happy command of colour concepts. We say of trees that they are green in spring, that they are the same colour as grass and a different colour from the sky. If we shine a torch with a red bulb upon a white surface, we say that the surface (...) looks pink although it is white. And if we suffer a bout of jaundice we claim that white things look yellowish to us, although they are not yellow, nor do they look yellow. We employ this tripartite distinction unworriedly and unthinkingly. But when, in doing philosophy, we are called upon to elucidate colour concepts it becomes evident that these elementary concepts present intricate problems to the philosophical understanding. It is extraordinarily difficult to obtain a proper surview of colour grammar, and the temptations of philosophical illusion are legion. We go wrong before the first step is even taken, and hence do not notice our errors, for they are implicit in every move we make. We multiply impossibilities seriatim , getting better, like the White Queen, with practice. We then either slide into scepticism, or alternatively exclude it on empirical grounds - appealing, as is so popular in American philosophical circles, to the wonders of science, in particular physics and neurophysiology, to keep the malin genie from the door. (shrink)
I present here a modal extension of T called KTLM which is, by several measures, the simplest modal extension of T yet presented. Its axiom uses only one sentence letter and has a modal depth of 2. Furthermore, KTLM can be realized as the logical union of two logics KM and KTL which each have the finite model property (f.m.p.), and so themselves are complete. Each of these two component logics has independent interest as well.