The Australian moratorium on human clinical trials of xenotransplantation was lifted in December 2009. This decision follows public consultations on whether xenotransplantation should or should not proceed in Australia, which occurred in 2002 and 2004. However, the public consultation, in its design and process, did not facilitate meaningful public engagement and involvement, thus marginalising the public and devaluing their social experiences and diverse knowledges. This brief article questions what constitutes adequate public consultation, and suggests that consensus conferences or citizen juries (...) should be explored as a mechanism for meaningful public engagement for future public consultation exercises in Australia. (shrink)
Wittgenstein wrote ‘While thinking philosophically we see problems in places where there are none. It is for philosophy to show that there are no problems’. He meant that the ‘problems’ philosophers grapple with are of their own making. In a related remark he said: ‘This is the essence of a philosophical problem. The question itself is the result of a muddle. And when the question is removed, this is not by answering it’. Even more explicitly he said: ‘All that philosophy (...) can do is to destroy idols’. As he understood his job, it was not to produce or construct something; his job was entirely destructive. This is how Wittgenstein thought of philosophy when he thought about it in the abstract, and I share this view of philosophy. I believe that when we see how to dispose of all philosophical categories, our job is finished. For example, in epistemology our job is not to argue that it is possible to know such-and-such because so-and-so ; rather, we undermine all those ideas that make it seem as though we could not know such-and-such. Undermining philosophical ideas takes the form: When we philosophise, we are tempted to think so-and-so, but if we consider that idea, and do so while remaining free of all philosophical jargon, we find that we cannot make sense of it. (shrink)
In recent years there has been a tendency in some quarters to see an affinity between the views of Kierkegaard and Wittgenstein on the subject of religious belief. It seems to me that this is a mistake, that Kierkegaard's views were fundamentally at odds with Wittgenstein's. That this fact is not generally recognized is, I suspect, owing to the obscurity of Kierkegaard's most fundamental assumptions. My aim here is to make those assumptions explicit and to show how they differ from (...) Wittgenstein's. (shrink)
I find myself in profound disagreement with Wittgenstein's philosophy of religion and hence in disagreement also with those philosophers who have undertaken to elaborate and defend Wittgenstein's position. My principal objection is to the idea that religion is a language-game and that because of the kind of language-game it is, religious believers are not to be thought of as necessarily harbouring beliefs about the world over and above their secular beliefs. I reject this position, not because I think that there (...) are language-games and that religion happens not to be one, but because I find the very idea of a language-game to be indefensible. Put another way, I find myself out of sympathy with the recent idea that in philosophy of religion we ought to be discussing something called ‘religious language’ or ‘the kind of language involved in religious beliefs’. (shrink)
During Leibniz's lifetime, interest in the interpretation of the Bible and biblical prophecy became central to the theological and political concerns of Protestant Europe. Leibniz's treatment of this phenomenon will be examined in the light of his views on the nature of revelation and its role in his defence of Christianity. It will be argued that Leibniz's defence of the miracle of revelation – unlike his arguments on behalf of the core Christian mysteries of the Trinity and Incarnation – is (...) demonstrable by purely natural and scientific means, especially the verification of history. (shrink)
A co-authored article with Roy T. Cook forthcoming in a special edition on the Caesar Problem of the journal Dialectica. We argue against the appeal to equivalence classes in resolving the Caesar Problem.
What kind of duty do we have to try to stop other people doing wrong? The question is intelligible in just about any culture, but few of them seek to answer it in a rigorous fashion. The most striking exception is found in the Islamic tradition, where 'commanding right' and 'forbidding wrong' is a central moral tenet already mentioned in the Koran. As an historian of Islam whose research has ranged widely over space and time, Michael Cook is well (...) placed to interpret this complex subject. His book represents the first sustained attempt to map the history of Islamic reflection on this obligation. It covers the origins of Muslim thinking about 'forbidding wrong', the relevant doctrinal developments over the centuries, and its significance in Sunni and Shi'ite thought today. In this way the book contributes to the understanding of Islamic thought, its relevance to contemporary Islamic politics and ideology, and raises fundamental questions for the comparative study of ethics. (shrink)
Hua-yen is regarded as the highest form of Buddhism by most modern Japanese and Chinese scholars. This book is a description and analysis of the Chinese form of Buddhism called Hua-yen, Flower Ornament, based largely on one of the more systematic treatises of its third patriarch. Hua-yen Buddhism strongly resembles Whitehead's process philosophy, and has strong implications for modern philosophy and religion. Hua-yen Buddhism explores the philosophical system of Hua-yen in greater detail than does Garma C.C. Chang's _The Buddhist Teaching (...) of Totality _. An additional value is the development of the questions of ethics and history. Thus, Professor Cook presents a valuable sequel to Professor Chang's pioneering work. The Flower Ornament School was developed in China in the late 7th and early 8th centuries as an innovative interpretation of Indian Buddhist doctrines in the light of indigenous Chinese presuppositions, chiefly Taoist. Hua-yen is a cosmic ecology, which views all existence as an organic unity, so it has an obvious appeal to the modern individual, both students and layman. (shrink)
The scholars who defend or dispute moral relativism, the idea that a moral principle cannot be applied to people whose culture does not accept it, have concerned themselves with either the philosophical or anthropological aspects of relativism. This study, shows that in order to arrive at a definitive appraisal of moral relativism, it is necessary to understand and investigate both its anthropological and philosophical aspects. Carefully examining the arguments for and against moral relativism, Cook exposes not only that anthropologists (...) have failed in their attempt to support relativism with evidence of cultural differences, but that moral absolutists have been equally unsuccessful in their attempts to refute it. He argues that these conflicting positions are both guilty of an artificial and unrealistic view of morality and proposes a more subtle and complex account of morality. (shrink)
Monte Cook - Robert Desgabets's Representation Principle - Journal of the History of Philosophy 40:2 Journal of the History of Philosophy 40.2 189-200 Robert Desgabets's Representation Principle Monte Cook THE CARTESIAN PHILOSOPHER ROBERT DESGABETS'S only philosophical publication is his Critique de la Critique de la Recherche de la vérité , in which he criticizes Simon Foucher's criticism of Malebranche's Search After Truth. This work has never been republished and is now available only in rare book collections. Desgabets also (...) wrote several unpublished works that were widely circulated during his lifetime and in which he developed a unique philosophical system of his own. Fortunately, these were published in 1983 as Robert Desgabets, Oeuvres philosophiques inédites. Drawing particularly on this volume and especially on the longest work in this volume, Supplément à la philosophie de Monsieur Descartes , I give a glimpse of Desgabets's system. I do so by discussing the surprising view of intentionality central to Desgabets's proof of the external world and to Desgabets's system in general. I note some interesting similarities and differences between Desgabets's position and the positions of Descartes and seventeenth-century Cartesians Malebranche and Arnauld. But mainly I clarify and give some needed structure to Desgabets's argument for his view of intentionality. This argument is interesting in itself as a sustained argument.. (shrink)
Wittgenstein's Metaphysics offers a radical new interpretation of the fundamental ideas of Ludwig Wittgenstein. It takes issue with the conventional view that after 1930 Wittgenstein rejected the philosophy of the Tractatus and developed a wholly new conception of philosophy. By tracing the evolution of Wittgenstein's ideas Cook shows that they are neither as original nor as difficult as is often supposed. Wittgenstein was essentially an empiricist, and the difference between his early views (as set forth in the Tractatus) and (...) the later views (as expounded in the Philosophical Investigations) lies chiefly in the fact that after 1930 he replaced his version of reductionism with something subtler. Nevertheless, he ended where he began, as an empiricist armed with a theory of meaning. (shrink)
Wittgenstein made numerous pronouncements about philosophical method. But did he practice what he preached? Cook addresses this question by studying Wittgenstein’s treatment of the problem of other minds, tracing a line of argument that runs through his writings and lectures from the early 1930s to the 1950s. Cook finds that there is an inconsistency between Wittgenstein’s methodological advice and his actual practice. Instead of bringing words back from their metaphysical to their everyday use, he allows himself to use (...) uncritically words whose provenance is clearly metaphysical. (Published Online September 19 2006). (shrink)
This provocative study exposes the ways in which Wittgenstein's philosophical views have been misunderstood, including the failure to recognize the reductionist character of Wittgenstein's work. Author John Cook provides well-documented proof that Wittgenstein did not hold views commonly attributed to him, arguing that Wittgenstein's later work was mistakenly seen as a development of G. E. Moore's philosophy--which Wittgenstein in fact vigorously attacked. He also points to an underestimation of Russell's influence on Wittgenstein's thinking. Cook goes on to show (...) how these misunderstandings have had grave consequences for philosophy at large, and proposes that a more subtle appreciation of linguistic philosophy can yield valuable results. (shrink)
Boston Monday Lectures: Biology, a book of popular essays by the American orator Joseph Cook first published in 1879, was derived from a successful lecture series at Boston's Tremont Temple in 1878 that expertly synthesised the scientific scholarship of the day for public consumption and attempted to show that science was in harmony with religion and the Bible. Writing with clarity and conveying excitement to the lay audiences who flocked to hear him, Cook's lectures became extremely popular around (...) the world. Biology focuses on evolution, immortality and materialism. In 13 lectures, Cook discusses topics including T. H. Huxley and John Tyndall's ideas on evolution, Rudolf Hermann Lotze's thoughts on theism, and microscopy. Cook's lectures on immortality all begin with 'Does Death End All?' before probing further into a philosophical aspect of immortality. Cook interjects short essays, which he calls 'preludes', on subjects as diverse as political patronage and Daniel Webster's death. (shrink)
What kind of duty do we have to try to stop other people doing wrong? The question is intelligible in just about any culture, but few of them seek to answer it in a rigourous fashion. The most striking exception is found in the Islamic tradition, where 'commanding right' and 'forbidding wrong' is a central moral tenet already mentioned in the Koran. As an historian of Islam whose research has ranged widely over space and time, Michael Cook is well (...) placed to interpret this complex subject. His book represents the first sustained attempt to map the history of Islamic reflection on this obligation. It covers the origins of Muslim thinking about 'forbidding wrong', the relevant doctrinal developments over the centuries, and its significance in Sunni and Shi'ite thought today. In this way the book contributes to the understanding of Islamic thought, its relevance to contemporary Islamic politics and ideology, and raises fundamental questions for the comparative study of ethics. (shrink)
Michael Cook's classic study, Commanding Right and Forbidding Wrong in Islamic Thought (Cambridge, 2001), reflected upon the Islamic injunction to forbid wrongdoing. This book is a short, accessible survey of the same material. Using Islamic history to illustrate his argument, Cook unravels the complexities of the subject by demonstrating how the past informs the present. At the book's core is an important message about the values of Islamic traditions and their relevance in the modern world.
Just over a sixth of the world's population subscribes to the Muslim belief that `there is no god but God, and Muhammad is his Messenger'. Michael Cook gives an incisive account of the man who inspired this faith, drawing on the traditional Muslim sources to describe Muhammad's life and teaching.
Paradoxes are arguments that lead from apparently true premises, via apparently uncontroversial reasoning, to a false or even contradictory conclusion. Paradoxes threaten our basic understanding of central concepts such as space, time, motion, infinity, truth, knowledge, and belief. In this volume Roy T Cook provides a sophisticated, yet accessible and entertaining, introduction to the study of paradoxes, one that includes a detailed examination of a wide variety of paradoxes. The book is organized around four important types of paradox: the (...) semantic paradoxes involving truth, the set-theoretic paradoxes involving arbitrary collections of objects, the Soritical paradoxes involving vague concepts, and the epistemic paradoxes involving knowledge and belief. In each of these cases, Cook frames the discussion in terms of four different approaches one might take towards solving such paradoxes. Each chapter concludes with a number of exercises that illustrate the philosophical arguments and logical concepts involved in the paradoxes. _Paradoxes_ is the ideal introduction to the topic and will be a valuable resource for scholars and students in a wide variety of disciplines who wish to understand the important role that paradoxes have played, and continue to play, in contemporary philosophy. (shrink)
The Stance of Plato addresses Plato's particular fusion of literature and philosophy. Albert Cook examines a number of Plato's major dialogues to ascertain further the bearing of "rhetoric" and the dramatized dialogue on the relationship between literature and philosophy. Using an engaging and occasionally poetic style, Cook studies the implications of Plato's literary form and the historical context of his ideas. The Stance of Plato helps bridge the gap between scholars interested in Plato's arguments and logic and those (...) interested in their literary aspects, suggesting that literature and philosophy may not be separable domains. The book will be an important work for classicists, philosophers, and scholars of literature. (shrink)
Roy T Cook examines the Yablo paradox--a paradoxical, infinite sequence of sentences, each of which entails the falsity of all others that follow it. He focuses on questions of characterization, circularity, and generalizability, and pays special attention to the idea that it provides us with a semantic paradox that involves no circularity.
Logical pluralism is the view that there is more than one correct logic. In this article, I explore what logical pluralism is, and what it entails, by: (i) distinguishing clearly between relativism about a particular domain and pluralism about that domain; (ii) distinguishing between a number of forms logical pluralism might take; (iii) attempting to distinguish between those versions of pluralism that are clearly true and those that are might be controversial; and (iv) surveying three prominent attempts to argue for (...) logical pluralism and evaluating them along the criteria provided by (ii) and (iii). (shrink)
One of the main problems plaguing neo-logicism is the Bad Company challenge: the need for a well-motivated account of which abstraction principles provide legitimate definitions of mathematical concepts. In this article a solution to the Bad Company challenge is provided, based on the idea that definitions ought to be conservative. Although the standard formulation of conservativeness is not sufficient for acceptability, since there are conservative but pairwise incompatible abstraction principles, a stronger conservativeness condition is sufficient: that the class of acceptable (...) abstraction principles be strictly logically symmetrically class conservative . The article concludes with an examination of which classes of abstraction principles meet this criteria. (shrink)
It is shown that the logical truth of instances of the T-schema is incompatible with the formal nature of logical truth. In particular, since the formality of logical truth entails that the set of logical truths is closed under substitution, the logical truth of T-schema instances entails that all sentences are logical truths.
Relatively few articles discuss the ethical issues that accompany healthcare in rural areas. This article presents and discusses the key findings obtained from multi-method research studies conducted over a 9-year period of time in a multi-state rural area. It challenges the efficacy of current models for bioethics, shows what kinds of ethical issues develop in rural communities, and offers a framework for envisioning resources and approaches that may be more appropriate.
Campaigning activities of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have increased public awareness and concern regarding the alleged unethical and environmentally damaging practices of many major multinational companies. Companies have responded by developing corporate social responsibility strategies to demonstrate their commitment to both the societies within which they function and to the protection of the natural environment. This has often involved a move towards greater transparency in company practice and a desire to engage with stakeholders, often including many of the campaign organisations that (...) have been at the forefront of the criticisms of their activity. This article examines the ways in which stakeholder dialogue has impacted upon the relationships between NGOs and businesses. In doing so, it contributes to the call for more ‘stakeholder-focused’ research in this field (Frooman in Acad Manag Rev 24(2): 191–205, 1999; Steurer in Bus Strategy Environ 15: 15–69 2006). By adopting a stakeholder lens, and focusing more heavily upon the impact on one particular stakeholder community (NGOs) and looking in depth at one form of engagement (stakeholder dialogue), this article examines how experiences of dialogue are strategically transforming interactions between businesses and NGOs. It shows how experiences of stakeholder dialogue have led to transformations in the drivers for engagement, transformations in the processes of engagement and transformations in the terms of engagement. Examining these areas of transformation, the article argues, reveals the interactions at play in framing and shaping the evolving relationships between business and its stakeholders. (shrink)
A neologicist set theory based on an abstraction principle (NewerV) codifying the iterative conception of set is investigated, and its strength is compared to Boolos's NewV. The new principle, unlike NewV, fails to imply the axiom of replacement, but does secure powerset. Like NewV, however, it also fails to entail the axiom of infinity. A set theory based on the conjunction of these two principles is then examined. It turns out that this set theory, supplemented by a principle stating that (...) there are infinitely many nonsets, captures all (or enough) of standard second-order ZFC. Issues pertaining to the axiom of foundation are also investigated, and I conclude by arguing that this treatment provides the neologicist with the most viable reconstruction of set theory he is likely to obtain. (shrink)
This paper applies concepts Deleuze developed in his ‘Postscript on the Societies of Control’, especially those relating to modulatory power, dividuation and control, to aspects of Australian schooling to explore how this transition is manifesting itself. Two modulatory machines of assessment, NAPLAN and My Schools, are examined as a means to better understand how the disciplinary institution is changing as a result of modulation. This transition from discipline to modulation is visible in the declining importance of the disciplinary teacher–student relationship (...) as a measure of the success of the educative process. The transition occurs through seduction because that which purports to measure classroom quality is in fact a serpent of modulation that produces simulacra of the disciplinary classroom. The effect is to sever what happens in the disciplinary space from its representations in a luminiferous ether that overlays the classroom. (shrink)
One of the main reasons for providing formal semantics for languages is that the mathematical precision afforded by such semantics allows us to study and manipulate the formalization much more easily than if we were to study the relevant natural languages directly. Michael Tye and R. M. Sainsbury have argued that traditional set-theoretic semantics for vague languages are all but useless, however, since this mathematical precision eliminates the very phenomenon (vagueness) that we are trying to capture. Here we meet this (...) objection by viewing formalization as a process of building models, not providing descriptions. When we are constructing models, as opposed to accurate descriptions, we often include in the model extra ‘machinery’ of some sort in order to facilitate our manipulation of the model. In other words, while some parts of a model accurately represent actual aspects of the phenomenon being modelled, other parts might be merely artefacts of the particular model. With this distinction in place, the criticisms of Sainsbury and Tye are easily dealt with—the precision of the semantics is artefactual and does not represent any real precision in vague discourse. Although this solution to this problem is independent of any particular semantics a detailed account of how we would distinguish between representor and artefact within Dorothy Edgington's degree-theoretic semantics is presented. (shrink)
This paper uses Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of faciality to analyse the teacher’s face. According to Deleuze and Guattari, the teacher-face is a special type of face because it is an ’overcoded’ face produced in specific landscapes. This paper suggests four limit-faces for teacher faciality that actualise different mixes of signifiance and subjectification in a classroom in which individualisation and massifications are affected. Understanding these limit-faces suggests new ways to conceive the affects actualised in the classroom that are subjected to (...) increasing levels of surveillance from education policy makers. Through this ‘partial mapping’ new possibilities emerge to “escape the face”. (shrink)
In “The Runabout Inference Ticket” AN Prior (1960) examines the idea that logical connectives can be given a meaning solely in virtue of the stipulation of a set of rules governing them, and thus that logical truth/consequence.
It is sometimes suggested that impure sets are spatially co-located with their members (and hence are located in space). Sets, however, are in important respects like numbers. In particular, sets are connected to concepts in much the same manner as numbers are connected to concepts—in both cases, they are fundamentally abstracts of (or corresponding to) concepts. This parallel between the structure of sets and the structure of numbers suggests that the metaphysics of sets and the metaphysics of numbers should parallel (...) each other in relevant ways. This entails, in turn, that impure sets are not co-located with their members (nor are they located in space). (shrink)