This discussion recounts the development of several anthropological definitions of human nature. It then examines conclusions of studies in other disciplines that make possible a revised empirical definition of human nature and which have led to re-examination of paleoanthropological data classed as unimportant under the rubrics of preceeding studies. Finally, this discussion appraises certain of these data, as they pertain to the question: "Do empirical evidences suggest that a human nature, as well as a human structure, may be the product (...) of evolutionary processes?". (shrink)
This paper posits that organizational variables are the factors that lead to the moral decline of companies like Enron and Worldcom. The individuals involved created environments within the organizations that precipitated a spiral of unethical decision-making. It is proposed that at the executive level, it is the organizational factors associated with power and decision-making that have the critical influence on moral and ethical behavior. The study has used variables that were deemed to be surrogate measures of the ethical violations (OSHA (...) and EPA violations), the risky shift phenomenon (executive team size), banality of wrong-doing (reputation score for firms) and escalating commitment (tenure with the firm/change in revenue for declining firms). The research found that there were small correlations between ethical violations and the three organizational variables. (shrink)
Patricia Williams made a number of claims concerning the methods and practise of cladistic analysis and classification. Her argument rests upon the distinction of two kinds of hierarchy: a divisional hierarchy depicting evolutionary descent and the Linnean hierarchy describing taxonomic groups in a classification. Williams goes on to outline five problems with cladistics that lead her to the conclusion that systematists should eliminate cladism as a school of biological taxonomy and to replace it either with something that is (...) philosophically coherent or to replace it with pure methodology, untainted by theory (Williams 1992, 151). Williams makes a number of points which she feels collectively add up to insurmountable problems for cladistics. We examine Williams' views concerning the two hierarchies and consider what cladists currently understand about the status of ancestors. We will demonstrate that Williams has seriously misunderstood many modern commentators on this subject and all of her five persistent problems are derivable from this misunderstanding. Some persons believe and argue, on grounds approaching faith it seems to me, that phylogeny comes from our knowledge of evolution. Others have found to their surprise, and sometimes dismay, that phylogeny comes from our knowledge of systematics. Nelson (1989, 67). (shrink)
We assess the current state of sociology of religion, particularly in the United States, for the extent to which a “critical sociology of religion” currently exists and how it might look if it did. We focus particular attention on two areas of inquiry: religion and health; and religion and violence.
May a reader of Mr. Herbert Richards' Thucydidea briefly defend the manuscript reading in this familiar passage ? In the October issue of the Classical Quarterly (vii. 245) Mr. Richards suggests The second ar is very pointless, and a seems wanted. We do not need to be told that he saw them himself, and hardly that he did see them; that he saw many is worth mentioning.
Can corporations remain socially responsible in today's fiercely competitive global economy? For several decades after World War II, companies like IBM, which exemplified what journalist Robert J. Samuelson called the 'good corporation,' poured forth material comforts and technological ideas while guaranteeing full employment and adequate retirement. In the 1980s all of that changed, as corporations moved to 'downsize' and become lean, mean global competitors. In this collection, thirteen prominent scholars in business ethics, finance, management, and religion and six corporate leaders (...) respond to a new essay by Samuelson that sounds the death knell of the 'good corporation.' They propose new approaches to corporate integrity and social responsibility in the global economy. The book will be useful in corporate workshops and will make an excellent business ethics text in philosophy departments and business schools. (shrink)
The current "cultural turn" in the study of social movements has produced a number of concepts formulating the cultural-symbolic dimension of collective actions. This proliferation, however, has resulted in some confusion about which cultural-symbolic concept is best applied to understanding cultural processes involved in social movements. We articulate a new definition of ideology that makes it an empirically useful concept to the study of social-movement mobilization. It is also formulated as autonomous of concepts such as culture and hegemony and of (...) other cultural-symbolic concepts presently used in the movement literature to explain participant mobilization. We demonstrate the usefulness of our ideology concept by analyzing letters written to Martin Luther King, Jr. from segregationists opposed to the integration of American society. The analysis indicates that the letter writers particularized segregationist culture, creating ideologies that fit their structural, cultural, and immediate circumstances, and that the ideologies they constructed thereby acted to mobilize their countermovement participation. The particularizing resulted in four differentiated ideological versions of segregationist culture. The empirically acquired variety of ideological versions is inconsistent with the role attributed to cultural-symbolic concepts in the social-movement literature and requires theoretical clarification. We conclude with a discussion of the theoretical implications for social-movement theory of the variety of segregationist ideologies. (shrink)
This concluding comment draws upon the common themes articulated by the preceding contributors about how Sociology of Religion and Religious Studies can influence each other, as well as considering some of the obstacles to that. It concludes with some intellectual suggestions for furthering some of our common interests.
The Belgian author J.-H. Rosny aîné is a relative unknown. A contemporary of Jules Verne and H. G. Wells, he wrote a number of science fiction stories, as well as naturalistic ones, all in French. Despite being something of a celebrity in his day, he has received scant attention from the anglophone world—a smattering of translations and a couple of Ph.D. dissertations that "tend to dismiss Rosny's 'scientific' novels and disparage SF". With this new volume, Chatelain and Slusser aim to (...) set a foundation for, and secure an interest in, Rosny as a subject of study and to argue for his import in the history of sf. The work contains a lengthy introduction, copious notes, and a useful... (shrink)
In this essay I consider the argument that Bernard Williams advances in ‘The Makropolus Case’ for the meaninglessness of immortality. I also consider various counter-arguments. I suggest that the more clearly these counter-arguments are targeted at the spirit of Williams's argument, rather than at its letter, the less clearly they pose a threat to it. I then turn to Nietzsche, whose views about the eternal recurrence might appear to make him an opponent of Williams. I argue that, (...) properly interpreted, these views in fact make him an ally. (shrink)
Both Kant and James claim to limit the role of knowledge in order to make room for faith. In this paper, we argue that despite some similarities, their attempts to do this come apart. Our main claim is that, although both Kant and James justify our adopting religious beliefs on practical grounds, James believes that we can—and should—subsequently assess such beliefs on the basis of evidence. We offer our own account of this evidence and discuss what this difference means for (...) their accounts of religious belief. (shrink)