To claim that Hayden White has yet to be read seriously as a philosopher of history might seem false on the face of it. But do tropes and the rest provide any epistemic rationale for differing representations of historical events found in histories? As an explanation of White’s influence on philosophy of history, such a proffered emphasis only generates a puzzle with regard to taking White seriously, and not an answer to the question of why his efforts should be worthy (...) of any philosophical attention at all. For what makes his emphasis on narrative structure and its associated tropes of philosophical relevance? What, it may well be asked, did any theory that draws its categories from a stock provided by literary criticism contribute to explicating problems with regard to the warranting of claims about knowledge, explanation, or causation that represent those concerns that philosophy typically brings to this field? Robert Doran’s anthologizing of previously uncollected pieces, ranging as they do over a literal half-century of White’s published work, offers an opportunity to identify explicitly those philosophical themes and arguments that regularly and prominently feature there. Moreover, White’s essays in this volume demonstrate a credible knowledge of and interest in mainstream analytic philosophers of his era and also reveal White as deeply influenced by or well acquainted with other important philosophers of history. White thus invites a reading of his work as philosophy, and this volume presents the opportunity for accepting it as such. (shrink)
Should a principle of charity be applied to the interpretation of the colour concepts exercised in visual experience? We think not. We shall argue, for one thing, that the grounds for applying a principle of charity are lacking in the case of colour concepts. More importantly, we shall argue that attempts at giving the experience of colour a charitable interpretation either fail to respect obvious features of that experience or fail to interpret it charitably, after all. Charity to visual experience (...) is therefore no motive for resisting the natural, Galilean response to a scientific understanding of light and vision. The best interpretation of colour experience ends up convicting it of widespread and systematic error. (shrink)
In this essay, I defend theology against a recent argument made by Peter Byrne. According to Byrne, any discipline of thought that can be interpreted realistically shows the accumulation of reliable or widespread belief about the reality it investigates. I challenge this claim, first, by showing how theology, so construed as an exercise of ‘faith seeking understanding’, can and should be interpreted realistically, even if it does not show the accumulation of reliable or widespread belief about divine reality. Second, I (...) give a plausible account of why theology is beset by internal disagreement and division, even if the goal of theological enquiry is to overcome such disagreement and division. (shrink)
The paper is a defense of the project of explaining the a priori via the notion of meaning or concept possession. It responds to certain objections that have been made to this project—in particular, that there can be no epistemically analytic sentences that are not also metaphysically analytic, and that the notion of implicit definition cannot explain a priori entitlement. The paper goes on to distinguish between two different ways in which facts about meaning might generate facts about entitlement—inferential and (...) constitutive. It concludes by outlining a theory of the latter. (shrink)
Philosophers and ethicists debate this controversial moral principle illustrating its application to current moral dilemmas such as war, suicide, nuclear power, affirmative action, and morphine use for terminal cancer patients.
This paper argues that, given a certain apparently inevitable thesis about content, we could not know our own minds. The thesis is that the content of a thought is determined by its relational properties.
It is very common these days to come across the claim that the notions of mental content and linguistic meaning are normative notions. In the work of many philosophers, it plays a pivotal role. Saul Kripke made it the centerpiece of his influential discussion of Wittgenstein’s treatment of rulefollowing and private language; he used it to argue that the notions of meaning and content cannot be understood in naturalistic terms. Kripke’s formulations tend to be in terms of the notion of (...) linguistic meaning, but his argumentative strategy makes it clear that he holds both versions of the claim.... (shrink)
Samuelson's text was first published in 1948, and it immediately became the authority for the principles of economics courses. The book continues to be the standard-bearer for principles courses, and this revision continues to be a clear, accurate, and interesting introduction to modern economics principles. Bill Nordhaus is now the primary author of this text, and he has revised the book to be as current and relevant as ever.
This volume presents a series of influential essays by Paul Boghossian on the theory of content and on its relation to the phenomenon of a priori knowledge. The essays are organized under four headings: the nature of content; content and self-knowledge; knowledge, content, and the a priori; and colour concepts.
According to a very natural picture of rational belief, we aim to believe only what is true. However, as Bernard Williams used to say, the world does not just inscribe itself onto our minds. Rather, we have to try to figure out what is true from the evidence available to us. To do this, we rely on a set of epistemic rules that tell us in some general way what it would be most rational to believe under various epistemic circumstances. (...) We reason about what to believe; and we do so by relying on a set of rules.... (shrink)
The paper asks under what conditions deductive reasoning transmits justiﬁcation from its premises to its conclusion. It argues that both standard externalist and standard internalist accounts of this phenomenon fail. The nature of this failure is taken to indicate the way forward: basic forms of deductive reasoning must justify by being instances of ‘blind but blameless’ reasoning. Finally, the paper explores the suggestion that an inferentialist account of the logical constants can help explain how such reasoning is possible.
An irrealist conception of a given region of discourse is the view that no real properties answer to the central predicates of the region in question. Any such conception emerges, invariably, as the result of the interaction of two forces. An account of the meaning of the central predicates, along with a conception of the sorts of property the world may contain, conspire to show that, if the predicates of the region are taken to express properties, their extensions would have (...) to be deemed uniformly empty. The question then becomes whether the predicates are best understood as expressing properties, and hence as founded on error, or whether they ought to be understood along non-factualist lines.z Historically, irrealist models were developed primarily in connection with evaluative discourse, although as physicalism has flourished and as reductionist programs have failed, their application has been extended to many other domains. Indeed, it is one of the more influential suggestions in contemporary philosophy of mind that they apply even to ordinary belief/desire psychology. A correct understanding of the semantics and metaphysics of content-based psychology leaves us, so the proponents of the in-. (shrink)
Only in recent years have developmental psychologists begun advocating and exploring dual-process theories and their applicability to cognitive development. In this paper, a dual-process model of developments in two processing systems—an “analytic” and an “experiential” system—is discussed. We emphasise the importance of “metacognitive intercession” and developments in this ability to override experiential processing. In each of two studies of sunk cost decisions, age-related developments in normative decisions were observed, as were declines in the use of a “waste not” heuristic. In (...) the second study, children and adolescents were presented with arguments for normative and non-normative sunk cost decisions. Following argument evaluation, participants were re-presented the original problems and a set of novel, transfer problems. Results indicated that post-argument improvements were most apparent during adolescence. Age-related improvements were most noticeable on the transfer problems. In general, the findings suggest that the ability to metacognitively intercede (i.e., reflect on arguments; inhibit experientially produced responses) emerges towards middle adolescence. However, even by the end of adolescence, in the absence of significant contextual cues and motivation, this ability is infrequently utilised. (shrink)
In the latest edition of their popular overview text, Erickson and Murphy continue to provide a comprehensive, affordable, and accessible introduction to anthropological theory from antiquity to the present.
The dispute between realists about color and anti-realists is actually a dispute about the nature of color properties. The disputants do not disagree over what material objects are like. Rather, they disagree over whether any of the uncontroversial facts about material objects--their powers to cause visual experiences, their dispositions to reflect incident light, their atomic makeup, and so on--amount to their having colors. The disagreement is thus about which properties colors are and, in particular, whether colors are any of the (...) properties in a particular set that is acknowledged on both sides to exhaust the properties of material objects. In a previous paper we discussed at length one attempt to identify colors with particular properties of material objects--namely, with their dispositions to cause visual experiences. Here we shall discuss a different and perhaps more influential version of realism, which says that the colors of material objects are microphysical properties of their surfaces. We shall call this theory physicalism about color (physicalism, for short). In order to evaluate this theory, however, we shall first have to clarify some methodological issues. Our hope is that we can bring some further clarity to the question of color realism, whether or not we succeed in our critique of the physicalists' answer. (shrink)
I believe that the notion of epistemic transparency does play an important role in our ordinary conception of mental content and I want to say what that role is. Unfortunately, the task is a large one; here I am able only to begin on its outline. I shall proceed somewhat indirectly, beginning with a discussion of externalist conceptions of mental content. I shall show that such conceptions violate epistemic transparency to an extent that has not been fully appreciated. Subsequently, I (...) shall look at the implications of this violation and at the reconstructive project that a rejection of transparency entails. I am inclined to think it unlikely that we will get a conception of propositional content that underwrites epistemic transparency. But I am concerned that we have not fully appreciated the role that transparency currently plays and the work that would need to be done were we to discard it. (shrink)
Significant structural, developmental, and financial constraints exist in Scottish soccer that may predicate a different approach to talent identification and development. To our knowledge, no published reports exist evaluating the prevalence of the relative age effect in Scottish soccer players. Consequently, the aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of the RAE among varied playing levels and ages of male Scottish youth soccer players. Birthdates of male youth players from U10 to U17 age groups and from playing levels: (...) “Amateur”, “Development”, and “Performance”, alongside a group of male Scottish senior professional players were recorded and categorized into quartiles and semesters from the start of the selection year. Birthdates were analyzed for: each playing level and each age group irrespective of playing level. For the varied playing levels examined, an RAE was evident in “Development” and “Performance” playing levels only at youth level. When examining each age group, an RAE was observed in U12–U17 players only. While there was a slight asymmetry favoring Q1 born senior professional players, the RAE was not present within this group of our sample. Results from our study suggest that a bias in selecting individuals born earlier in the selection year may exist within male soccer academy structures, but not at amateur level. The asymmetry favoring chronologically older players at youth but not professional level questions the efficacy of this conscious bias within male Scottish soccer players. (shrink)
This article briefly review the fundamentals of structural equation modeling for readers unfamiliar with the technique then goes on to offer a review of the Martin and Cullen paper. In summary, a number of fit indices reported by the authors reveal that the data do not fit their theoretical model and thus the conclusion of the authors that the model was “promising” are unwarranted.
For nearly a century, and until very recently, the majority of U.S. states required a blood test for marriage license applicants. The tests identified people with conditions formerly designated as "venereal diseases," most importantly gonorrhea and syphilis. Those who tested positive were barred from civil marriage. Although the premarital testing requirement is no longer a feature of state law, numerous related enactments are common features of law in most states.The historical literature describing the rise and fall of laws prescribing marriage (...) restrictions related to VD has treated those enactments as public health measures, meant primarily to forestall the spread of disease to intimate partners. But laws to... (shrink)
The question I want to look at in this paper is this: To what extent does an externalist conception of mental content threaten our ability to know the contents of our thoughts? I shall argue that, in an important sense, externalism is inconsistent with the thesis that we have authoritative first-person knowledge of thought content: in particular, I shall argue, it is inconsistent with the thesis that our thought contents are epistemically transparent to us. I shall further argue that this (...) is true in a sense that falsifies another important and traditionally fundamental view —that we can detect a priori whether our inferences are logically valid or not. I shall leave for another occasion the question whether these results reflect badly on epistemic transparency or on externalism. (shrink)
ABSTRACTThis essay offers a reconfiguration of the possibility‐space of positions regarding the metaphysics and epistemology associated with historical knowledge. A tradition within analytic philosophy from Danto to Dummett attempts to answer questions about the reality of the past on the basis of two shared assumptions. The first takes individual statements as the relevant unit of semantic and philosophical analysis. The second presumes that variants of realism and antirealism about the past exhaust the metaphysical options . This essay argues that both (...) of these assumptions should be rejected. It develops as an alternative an irrealist account of history, a view based in part on work by Leon Goldstein and Ian Hacking. On an irrealist view, historical claims ought to be treated as subject to the same conditions and caveats that apply to any theory of empirical or scientific knowledge. Irrealism argues for pasts as made and not found. The argument emphasizes the priority of classification over perception in the order of understanding and so verification. Because nothing a priori anchors practices of classification, no sense can be attached to claims that some single structure must or does determine what events take place in human history. Irrealism denies to realism the very intelligibility of any imagined view from nowhere, that is, a determinately configured past subsisting sub specie aeternitatis. A plurality of pasts exists because constituting a past always depends to some degree on socially mediated negotiations of a fit between descriptions and experience. (shrink)
In this article I offer an extended, critical review of the analytic theology project. In the first part of the article, I investigate the origins and rise of analytic theology. I also offer some initial insights into the nature of analytic theology, based on some of what its chief proponents understand analytic theology to be. In the second part of the article, I summarize and evaluate some of the major contributions that already have been made within analytic theology. In the (...) third and final section of the article, I evaluate the analytic theology project as a whole, testing its compatibility with certain methods and movements within the Christian theological tradition. Based on this discussion, I then begin to narrate the advantages of construing analytic theology more narrowly, as a dogmatic project committed to articulating and defending Christian doctrine in rational pursuit of genuine theological knowledge and truth. My final claim is that analytic theologians should continue to engage in bold, speculative inquiry into the nature of the divine as well as related divine matters, and thus remain committed to developing and defending theology as a dogmatic and speculative enterprise. By doing so, analytic theologians will help fortify and elevate the contemporary theological enterprise as a whole. (shrink)
For almost half a century, the person most responsible for fomenting brouhahas regarding degrees of plasticity in the writing of histories has been Hayden White. Yet, despite the voluminous responses provoked by White’s work, almost no effort has been made to treat White’s writings in a systematic yet sympathetic way as a philosophy of history. Herman Paul’s book begins to remedy that lack and does so in a carefully considered and extremely scholarly fashion. In his relatively brief six chapters, (...)Paul packs a wealth of information. He convincingly demonstrates that a guiding theme of White’s work from earliest times has been that historians have no choice but to impose a structure on historical data and thus bear responsibility for structures so imposed. As such, a key philosophical question concerns on what bases White contends that a freedom of choice exists regarding forms given to recorded histories. This essay focuses on how Paul argues for a unified vision that answers this question, as well as how he offers an original and comprehensive conception of White’s writings. (shrink)
In this paper, I analyse and interpret Thomas Aquinas's account of faith in order to show how Thomistic faith is a veridical cognitive state that directs the mind to God, and consequently constitutes a distinct form of knowledge of God. By assenting to the revealed propositions of faith, and thereby forming true beliefs about God under the authority and guidance of God's grace, the possessor of faith comes to know or apprehend truly something about God, even if she fails to (...) ‘see’ or know fully the truth that she believes. A further task of the paper is to show how Thomistic faith qualifies as knowledge from a contemporary epistemological standpoint, insofar as it consists of true belief that is appropriately justified and warranted, by virtue of being supernaturally informed and generated. By expositing and defending this central claim – focusing specifically on faith as a form of knowledge – I show how Aquinas offers an epistemologically realist account of faith. (shrink)
A suggestion famously made by Peter Winch and carried through to present discussions holds that what constitutes the social as a kind consists of something shared – rules or practices commonly learned, internalized, or otherwise acquired by all members belonging to a society. This essays argues against the explanatory efficacy of appeals to this shared something as constitutive of a social kind by examining a violation of social norms or rules, viz., mistakes. I argue that an asymmetric relation exists between (...) the notion of mistakes and that of the social. In particular, mistakes do not presuppose a concept of the social, but the concept of the social requires prior specification of a category of mistakes. But no such prior specification proves possible. The very notion of a mistake is so inchoate that it makes it impossible to provide the kind of regimentation required for a rule-governed domain. Thus, there may be recognized mistakes even in the absence of a unified system or common knowledge of norms.Later writers attempt to avoid Winch's over-strong assumption that something shared and internal constitutes the social but cannot. Extending recent work by Stephen Turner, I argue that ``the social'' is not a domain that is susceptible to lawlike treatment, but rather a heterogeneous, motley collection. For absent the assumption of a shared something, no social object exists to be explained. So, I conclude, we have at present no clear way of marking out the social as a coherent or unified domain of inquiry. (shrink)
W. V. Quine was the most important naturalistic philosopher of the twentieth century and a major impetus for the recent resurgence of the view that empirical science is our best avenue to knowledge. His views, however, have not been well understood. Critics charge that Quine’s naturalized epistemology is circular and that it cannot be normative. Yet, such criticisms stem from a cluster of fundamental traditional assumptions regarding language, theory, and the knowing subject – the very presuppositions that Quine is at (...) pains to reject. Through investigation of Quine’s views regarding language, knowledge, and reality, the author offers a new interpretation of Quine’s naturalism. The naturalism/antinaturalism debate can be advanced only by acknowledging and critiquing the substantial theoretical commitments implicit in the traditional view. Gregory argues that the responses to the circularity and non-normativity objections do just that. His analysis further reveals that Quine’s departure from the tradition penetrates the conception of the knowing subject, and he thus offers a new and engaging defence of Quine’s naturalism. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to analyze the relationship between national culture and ethical decision making. Established theories of ethics and moral development are reviewed and a culture-based model of ethical decision making in organizations is derived. Although the body of knowledge in both cross-cultural management and ethics is well documented, researchers have failed to integrate the influence of cultural values into the ethical decision-making paradigm. A conceptual understanding of how managers from different nations make decisions about highly ethical (...) issues will provide business ethics researchers with a sound theoretical foundation upon which future empirical inquiry can be based. (shrink)
Following Oliver Ramsbotham’s observation that conflict resolution and analysis have not taken radical disagreement seriously enough, and in light of his lament that he has not yet found an adequate philosophy of radical disagreement, this article claims that the philosophy of Alasdair MacIntyre provides some coreelements of any adequate philosophy of radical disagreement. MacIntyre’s theory suggests that the problem of radical disagreement is in fact more radical thanRamsbotham affirms. Ramsbotham’s account of the strategic engagement of discourses approach is critiqued in (...) light of MacIntyre’s diagnosis of radical disagreement, which calls into question its theoretical and philosophical basis. The main problem is held to be that of internal radical disagreement, which SED appears to skirt over. This is elucidated through a brief exploration of two philosophical approaches to moral-political disagreement in relation to Israeli peace activism and the Colombian conflict. (shrink)
In this chapter a new problem about rule-following is outlined, one that is distinct both from Kripke’s and Wright’s versions of the problem. This new problem cannot be correctly responsed to, as Kripke’s can, by invoking Wright’s Intentional Account of rule-following. The upshot might be called, following Kant, an antinomy of pure reason: we both must — and cannot — make sense of someone’s following a rule. The chapter explores various ways out of this antinomy without here endorsing any of (...) them. (shrink)
In this article, I show how it is possible, working from a Thomistic perspective, to affirm the existence of animal rights. To start, I show how it is possible to ascribe indirect rights to animals—in particular, the indirect right to not be treated cruelly by us. Then, I show how it is possible to ascribe some direct rights to animals using the same reasoning that Aquinas offers in defending the claim that animals have indirect rights. Next, I draw on elements (...) of Aquinas’s metaphysical worldview in order to buttress the claim that animals have direct rights. I then respond to an attempt to ground the ethical treatment of animals, but not direct rights for animals, in natural law. In conclusion, I affirm that it is permissible to use animals to further the human good so long as in doing so we respect the direct rights that they possess. (shrink)
The very idea of narrative explanation invites two objections: a methodological objection, stating that narrative structure is too far from the form of a scientific explanation to count as an explanation, and a metaphysical objection, stating that narrative structure situates historical practice too close to the writing of fiction. Both of these objections, however, are illfounded. The methodological objection and the dispute regarding the status of historical explanation can be disposed of by revealing their motivating presupposition: the plausibility of an (...) exclusivist explication of explanation which appeals either to the unity-of-method thesis or some implicit notion of analytic equivalence, both problematic philosophical doctrines. The metaphysical objection fails with the rejection of the idea, in Mink's phrase, of an "untold story." The argument against history as an "untold story" develops from Danto's image of an Ideal Chronicler recording ideal events. A consequence of rejecting this view is that it no longer makes sense to speak of historical narratives as true or false. However, this failure engenders no special problem for assessing the objectivity or explanatory utility of narratives qua explanations. (shrink)