A 2011 National Academies of Sciences report called for an “Information Commons” and a “Knowledge Network” to revolutionize biomedical research and clinical care. We interviewed 41 expert stakeholders to examine governance, access, data collection, and privacy in the context of a medical information commons. Stakeholders' attitudes about MICs align with the NAS vision of an Information Commons; however, differences of opinion regarding clinical use and access warrant further research to explore policy and technological solutions.
In this essay, I claim that certain passages in Book IV of Benedict de Spinoza’s Ethics suggest a novel version of what is known as metaethical constructivism. The constructivist interpretation emerges in the course of attempting to resolve a tension between Spinoza’s apparent ethical egoism and some remarks he makes about the efficacy of collaborating with the right partners when attempting to promote our individual self-interest . Though Spinoza maintains that individuals necessarily aim to promote their self-interest, I argue that (...) Spinoza has an atypical conception of self that allows the interests of other people to be partially constitutive of one's own self-interest. In this way, Spinoza can account for the rationality of concern for the interests of others . This interpretation attributes to Spinoza a form of constructivism that differs in important ways from contemporary Humean and Kantian constructivisms and which can in principle be detached from Spinoza’s particular metaphysical commitments in order to yield a third general category of constructivist view . Though my treatment is necessarily brief, it is my hope that it can serve both to motivate a constructivist reading of Spinoza and, perhaps even more crucially, to suggest a Spinozistic variety of constructivism as a live theoretical option in metaethics. (shrink)
Much of our understanding of human thinking is based on probabilistic models. This innovative book by Jerome R. Busemeyer and Peter D. Bruza argues that, actually, the underlying mathematical structures from quantum theory provide a much better account of human thinking than traditional models. They introduce the foundations for modelling probabilistic-dynamic systems using two aspects of quantum theory. The first, 'contextuality', is a way to understand interference effects found with inferences and decisions under conditions of uncertainty. The second, 'quantum (...) entanglement', allows cognitive phenomena to be modeled in non-reductionist ways. Employing these principles drawn from quantum theory allows us to view human cognition and decision in a totally new light. Introducing the basic principles in an easy-to-follow way, this book does not assume a physics background or a quantum brain and comes complete with a tutorial and fully worked-out applications in important areas of cognition and decision. (shrink)
The Experiential Therapist steps outside of the medical model to explore alternative ways of thinking about mental health disorders. Peter D. Ladd argues that successful treatment results from an informed understanding of a patient’s experience, not an ability to name and categorize difficult experiences as classical disorders.
Humanity takes up space. Human beings, like many other species, also transform spaces. What is perhaps uniquely human is the disposition to qualitatively transform spaces into places that are charged with distinctive kinds of intergenerational significance. There is a profound, felt difference between a house as domestic space and a home as familial place or between the summit of a mountain one has climbed for the first time and the “same” rock pinnacle celebrated in ancestral narratives. Contemporary philosophical uses of (...) the word “place” often pivot on the distinction between “space” and “place” formalized by geographer-philosopher Yi-fu Tuan, who suggested that places incorporate the experiences and aspirations of a people over the course of their moral and aesthetic engagement with sites and locations. While spaces afford possibilities for different kinds of presence—physical, emotional, cognitive, dramatic, spiritual—places emerge as different ways of being present, fuse over time, and saturate a locale with distinctively collaborative patterns of significance. This approach to issues of place, however, is emblematic of what Edward S. Casey has argued are convictions about the primacy of absolute space and time that evolved along with the progressive dominance of the scientific imagination and modern imaginations of the universal. The recent reappearance of place in Western philosophy represents a turn away from abstract and a priori reasoning and back toward phenomenal experience and the primacy of embodied and emplaced intelligence. Places are enacted through the sustainably shared practices of mutually-responsive and mutually-vulnerable agents and are as numerous in kind as we are divergent in the patterns of values and intentions. The contributors to this volume draw on resources from Asian, European, and North American traditions of thought to engage in intercultural reflection on the significance of place in philosophy and of the place of philosophy itself in the cultural, social, economic, and political domains of contemporary life. The conversation of place that results explores the meaning of intercultural philosophy, the critical interplay of place and personal identity, the meaning of appropriate emplacement, the shared place of politics and religion, and the nature of the emotionally emplaced body. (shrink)
This volume presents new work on infinitism, the view that there are no foundational reasons for beliefs--an ancient view in epistemology, now growing again in popularity. Leading epistemologists illuminate its strengths and weaknesses, and address questions new and old about justification, reasoning, responsibility, disagreement, and trust.
Speech act theory has taught us 'how to do things with words'. Arresting Language turns its attention in the opposite direction - toward the surprising things that language can undo and leave undone. In the eight essays of this volume, arresting language is seen as language at rest, words no longer in service to the project of establishing conventions or instituting legal regimes. Concentrating on both widely-known and seldom-read texts from a variety of philosophers, writers, and critics - from Leibniz (...) and Mendelssohn, through Kleist and Hebel, to Benjamin and Irigaray - the book analyzes the genesis and structure of interruption, a topic of growing interest to contemporary literary studies, continental philosophy, legal studies, and theological reflection. Arresting Language identifies critical moments in philosophical and literary texts during which language itself - without any identifiable speaker - arrests otherwise continuous processes and procedures, including the process of representation and procedures for its legitimization. (shrink)
There are many things that could be wrong with foundationalism. For example, some have claimed that a so-called basic belief cannot be both 1) a reason for non-basic beliefs and 2) such that it cannot be provided with at least prima facie justification. If something is a reason, they say, then that something has to be a proposition and if it is a proposition, then it is the kind of thing that requires a reason in order to be even prima (...) facie justified. Another reason that some give for rejecting normative foundationalism is that it leads directly to skepticism. There is no way, they claim, to move from so-called basic propositions to “external world” propositions by employing normatively acceptable principles of reasoning. Still others have thought that the invention of a nonreasoned reason was as ad hoc as the invention of an unmoved mover. (shrink)
This book constitutes a supplement to the 1926 account of Alfred Marshall's Official Papers edited by John Maynard Keynes. The book presents material which Keynes did not include, editorial notes and introductions to the various pieces. It focuses on the advice that Marshall, a founding father of modern economics, offered to the British government in the late nineteenth century. The topics covered include education, the role of women, trade unions, unemployment, public enterprise, the quantity theory of money, inflation and trade, (...) benefits of free trade and dangers of protection. The material offers valuable insights into policy thinking at the time, much of which has a surprising degree of relevance to pressing policy issues during our own time. The contents facilitates understanding this doyen of British economics and founder of the Cambridge School of Economics. (shrink)
A historical perspective on the future of the car Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-3 DOI 10.1007/s11016-010-9479-z Authors Peter D. Norton, Department of Science, Technology and Society, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4744, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
As the Pyrrhonians made clear, reasons that adequately justify beliefs can have only three possible structures: foundationalism, coherentism, and infinitism. Infinitism—the view that adequate reasons for our beliefs are infinite and non-repeating—has never been developed carefully, much less advocated. In this paper, I will argue that only infinitism can satisfy two intuitively plausible constraints on good reasoning: the avoidance of circular reasoning and the avoidance of arbitrariness. Further, I will argue that infinitism requires serious, but salutary, revisions in our evaluation (...) of the power of reasoning. Thus, reasoning can not provide a basis for assenting to a proposition—where to assent to a proposition, p, means to believe that we know that p. A non-dogmatic form of provisional justification will be sketched. Finally, the best objections to infinitism, including those posed by the Pyrrhonians, will be shown (at least provisionally!) to be inadequate. (shrink)
“Real knowledge,” as I use the term, is the most highly prized form of true belief sought by an epistemic agent. This paper argues that defeasible infinitism provides a good way to characterize real knowledge and it shows how real knowledge can arise from fallible justification. Then, I argue that there are two ways of interpreting Ernest Sosa's account of real knowledge as belief that is aptly formed and capable of being fully defended. On the one hand, if beliefs are (...) aptly formed only if they have a specific causal etiology, namely that they are efficiently caused fully or partially by virtuous characteristics of the epistemic agent, then Sosa's account falls prey to what I call the problem of the Hazard of Empirical Disconfirmation. The HED problem applies to all forms of causal accounts of real knowledge and is simply that as we gain more empirical knowledge about the causal origins of our true beliefs that are the most highly prized we will discover that they do not always satisfy the required efficient causal constraints. Bluntly put, having sufficiently good reasons for our beliefs might not require that the beliefs have the requisite efficient causal etiology. On the other hand, there is a way of interpreting Sosa's views that does not include an efficient causal prerequisite. That interpretation makes Sosa's account of real knowledge almost identical to defeasible infinitism but expressed in an alternate vocabulary. Such a view is not subject to the HED problem and it can solve the deep problem in epistemology, namely how to get epistemically certain knowledge from fallible justification. (shrink)
Antonio Gramsci's notion of “passive revolution” has often been understood as a distinctive historical narrative, political concept, or theory of state formation. This article proposes to consider it instead as a “heuristic formula” within the “lexical architecture” of thePrison Notebooks. Based upon a diachronic and contextualist analysis of the usage of the formula, I argue that Gramsci's research on passive revolution emerged as a critical element within the development of his own distinctive conception of the “sublation” and “actualization” of the (...) slogan of “the revolution in permanence.” Attending to this dialectical relationship allows the political and strategic dimensions of passive revolution to be highlighted, and suggests new paths of research for the debate about its analytic fertility and contemporary relevance. (shrink)
O propósito deste artigo é mostrar como podem ser desenvolvidas explicações robustas de justificação e de certeza no interior do infinitismo. Primeiro, eu explico como a concepção infinitista de justificação epistêmica difere das concepções fundacionista e coerentista. Em segundo lugar, explico como o infinitista pode oferecer uma solução ao problema do regresso epistêmico. Em terceiro lugar, explico como o infinitismo, per se, é compatível com as teorias daqueles que sustentam 1) que o conhecimento requer certeza e que uma tal forma (...) superior de conhecimento é possível, bem como com as daqueles que rejeitam algum ou ambos os conjuntos em 1). Em outras palavras, o infinitismo nem endossa, nem rejeita o ceticismo, tomando-se essa tese como sendo aquela segundo a qual nós não possuímos conhecimento naquelas situações que nos parecem cognoscíveis. PALAVRAS-CHAVE – Certeza. Coerentismo. Fundacionismo. Infinitismo. Pirronismo. Regresso epistêmico. ABSTRACT The purpose of the paper is to show how robust accounts of justification and certainty can be developed within infinitism. First, I explain how the infinitist conception of epistemic justification differs from both the foundationalist and coherentist conceptions. Second, I explain how the infinitist can provide a solution to the epistemic regress problem. Third, I explain how infinitism, per se, is compatible with both the views of those who hold 1) that knowledge requires certainty and that such high-grade knowledge is possible as well as those who deny either or both conjuncts in 1). In other words, infinitism neither endorses nor rejects skepticism, taking that view to mean that we do not have knowledge in those areas commonly thought to be within our ken. KEY WORDS – Certainty. Coherentism. Foundationalism. Infinitism. Pyrrhonism. Epistemic regress. (shrink)
The subaltern has frequently been understood as a figure of exclusion ever since it was first highlighted by the early Subaltern Studies collective’s creative reading of Antonio Gramsci’s carceral writings. In this article, I argue that a contextualist and diachronic study of the development of the notion of subaltern classes throughout Gramsci’s full Prison Notebooks reveals new resources for “refiguring” the subaltern. I propose three alternative figures to comprehend specific dimensions of Gramsci’s theorizations: the “irrepressible subaltern,” the “hegemonic subaltern,” and (...) the “citizen-subaltern.” Far from being exhausted by the eclipse of the conditions it was initially called upon to theorize in Subaltern Studies, such a refigured notion of the subaltern has the potential to cast light both on the contradictory development of political modernity and on contemporary political processes. (shrink)
Many observers have argued that the US health care system could be more efficient, and achieve better outcomes if providers focused more on improving the community's health, not just the welfare of individual patients. The passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010 seemed to herald the promise of such reforms, and greater integration of the health care and public systems. In this article, we reassess the quest for integration, a quest we call the “integration project.” After examining the modest (...) steps taken so far toward integration, we consider some conceptual barriers to integration as well as some of the risks it might portend for the public health system. Our assessment contributes to wide-ranging debates among public health advocates, practitioners, and policymakers as to the health care system's role in protecting public health, and how the public health system can best be organized to meet expected population health challenges. (shrink)
Public health is concerned with how to improve the population’s health. At times, though, actions to improve the community’s health may collide with individual civil rights. For example, a public health response to a bioterrorism attack, such as smallpox, may require relaxing an individual’s due process protections to prevent the smallpox from spreading. This tension lies at the heart of public health policy. It also must be considered in discussing the concept of human rights in health.Proponents of incorporating the concept (...) of human rights in health emphasize the importance of both individual rights and collective rights. They argue that observing human rights is not only consistent with broad public health goals, but necessary to their attainment. To many human rights advocates, the concept is not limited to protecting against governmental intrusion. Accordingly, they emphasize the government’s obligation to promote attainment of human rights by, for instance, providing adequate health care. (shrink)