Educating the Virtues David Carr Routledge, 1991. Pp. 304. ISBN 0?415?05746?9. £35. The Philosophical Theology of St Thomas Aquinas By Leo J. Elders E. J. Brill, 1990. Pp. 332. ISBN 0?04?09156?4. $74.36. The State and Justice: An Essay in Political Theory By Milton Fisk Cambridge University Press, 1990. Pp. x + 391. ISBN 0?521?38966?6. £10.95 pbk. Perspectives on Language and Thought: Interrelations in Development Edited by S. A. Gelman and J. P. Byrnes Cambridge University Press, 1992. Pp. xii + 524. (...) ISBN 0?521?37497?9. £50. Aristotle's First Principles By T. H. Irwin Oxford University Press, 1989. Pp. xviii + 702. ISBN 0?198?24717?6. £17.50 Pbk. Truth and Eros: Foucault, Lacan, and the Question of Ethics By John Rajchman Routledge, 1991. Pp. 155. ISBN 0?415?90380?7. £10.99. Logical Forms By Mark Sainsbury Blackwell, 1991. Pp. 408. ISBN 0?631?17777?9. £11.95. Form and Transformation. A Study in the Philosophy of Plotinus By Frederic M. Schroeder McGill?Queen's University Press, 1992. Pp. xiv + 136. ISBN 0?7735?1016?8. £34.95. Did The Greeks Believe Their Myths? An Essay on the Constitutive Imagination By Paul Veyne, translated by Paula Wissing The University of Chicago Press, 1988. Pp. 161. ISBN 0?226?85434?5. £8.75 Pbk. What is Philosophy? By Dietrich von Hildebrand Routledge, 1991. Pp. lvii + 242. ISBN 0?415?02584?2. £12.99. (shrink)
These essays represent an important contribution to modern philosophical theology. They begin with an appreciation of Basil Mitchell's work and then discuss the role of reason in the justification of Christian theism, giving special attention to the nature of informal reasoning in religion and science. The latter essays examine particular arguments raised by specific religious concepts, covering such topics as the problem of evil, conspicuous sanctity, atonement, and the Eucharist. Drawn from a wide spectrum of philosophers and theologians, the contributors (...) include Maurice Wiles, Grace M. Jantzen, Gordon Kaufman, J.R. Lucas, Rom Harr'e, Richard Swinburne, and Michael Dummett. (shrink)
The question of whether social structures are efficacious can be tackled by examining how they are produced. There are roles and rules, and there are people. Only the latter have the necessary powers to generate social worlds as products. Changing the social world can be achieved only by changing the rules and customs active people follow. Selectionist models of change also draw our attention to rules. Finally, there are obstacles to social change in `reductions' - the minute social practices that (...) shape actual social orders. (shrink)
The concept of rights is among the more thoroughly examined in political philosophy. Nonetheless, it remains ontologically elusive and morally problematical. In the form of an allegedly natural endowment bequeathed by the Stoic philosophers, it was famously dismissed by Bentham as ‘nonsense on stilts’. Chiefly by way of natural law theory and versions of Kantian moral philosophy rights arise at once from the presupposed autonomy of rational beings and from certain duties others have to beings of such a kind. Within (...) this tradition it is argued that morality itself is grounded in the autonomy of rational beings and that whatever overrides this autonomy converts such beings to instrumental means. Accordingly, there is a basic right to be regarded as a moral being and it is this right that generates or is foundational for the rest. Debate continues, of course, on such questions as to whether autonomy per se either logically or morally requires dutiful respect and whether rationality per se is either a necessary or a sufficient condition for autonomy itself. (shrink)
In continuing with the research program initiated by Llored and Harré of exploring the part/whole discourses of chemistry, we analyse Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationships studies, which are widespread approaches for modeling substances’ properties. The study is carried out by analyzing a particular QSAR model, and it is found that different mereologies are needed: from those regarding bulk substances as wholes and molecular entities as parts and to mereologies where the wholes are molecules whose parts are atoms, structured subsets of atoms, nuclei (...) and electronic densities. We suggest a relationship between successful QSAR models and a deep understanding of the mereologies used and the ways they are intertwined. We note that QSAR modelers prefer the mereology of substance-molecule and then discuss how that is related to simplicity and computational capacity. Historical questions are opened, e.g. how the mereologies of substances have changed over time? and why they are mostly oriented toward organic chemistry? (shrink)
This is the first major textbook to offer a truly comprehensive review of cognitive science in its fullest sense. Ranging across artificial intelligence models and cognitive psychology through to recent discursive and cultural theories Rom Harre offers a breathtakingly original yet accessible integration of the field. At its core this textbook addresses the question "is psychology a science?" with a clear account of scientific method and explanation and their bearing on psychological research. A pivotal figure in psychology and philosophy for (...) many decades Rom Harre has turned his unmatched breadth of reference and insight for students at all levels. Whether describing, language, categorization, memory, the brain or connectionism the book always links our intuitions about beliefs, desires and their social context to the latest accounts of their place in computational and biological models. Fluently written and well structured, this an ideal text for students. The book is divided into four basic modules, with three lectures in each; the reader is guided with helpful learning points, study and essay questions and key readings for each chapter. (shrink)
Harre shows how various views about the nature of science are related to the great historical schools of philosophy. He sets out his argument in terms of concrete episodes in the history of science. This new edition includes a chapter on science and society, which explores issues such as the morality of experimentation on live animals and the premise that knowledge is a basis for moral good. Harre also examines the theory that science is a form of art, and looks (...) at the way scientific knowledge affects out religious beliefs. (shrink)
Three concepts have recently been added to the resources of the philosophy of chemistry -- 'affordance' from J.J. Gibson’s perception studies, 'hinge' from Ludwig Wittgenstein’s later philosophy, and the 'mereological fallacies' from the critical discussion of neuropsychology by M.R. Bennett and P.M.S. Hacker. Together they have to some extent opened the way for a reshaping of the materialist metaphysics of chemistry. When made use of in the philosophy of chemistry they also represent a renewed emphasis on chemical practice and its (...) relation to the products of chemical activity. In addition to that shift of emphasis, the analytical use of the three concepts reveals the extent to which the environment of chemical processes is an essential component in chemical explanations. The analytical tool kit is completed by the revival of the model centered approach to the understanding of how the content of theories is established, changes, and grows. The fourth concept, that of the 'iconic model', completes the equipment needed to examine the intelligibility of chemical discourse and practice in more detail than heretofore. (shrink)
Mereology is the logic of part—whole concepts as they are used in many different contexts. The old chemical metaphysics of atoms and molecules seems to fit classical mereology very well. However, when functional attributes are added to part specifications and quantum mechanical considerations are also added, the rules of classical mereology are breached in chemical discourses. A set theoretical alternative mereology is also found wanting. Molecular orbital theory requires a metaphysics of affordances that also stands outside classical mereology.
Body care has never before been so much a focus of public interest, nor have the ways we classify people by reference to their kind of body excited such political passions. This study is an attempt to build a comprehensive account of the roles our bodies play in our lives. Through a series of discussions Rome harre concludes that the roles the body plays in our lives are determined less by organic functioning than by cultural conventions and social meanings.
This paper widens the scope of our previous paper (Harré and Llored in Found Chem 13:63–76, 2011) by scrutinizing how whole/parts relations are involved in the study of molecules. In doing so, we point out two mereological fallacies which endanger both philosophical and chemical inferences. We also further explore how the concept of affordance is related to our mereological investigation. We then refer to quantum chemistry in order to pave the way for a new mereological approach for chemistry.
Abstract: The argument for interpreting Wittgenstein's project as primarily therapeutic can be extended from the domain of intellectual pathologies that form the core of the Philosophical Investigations to the topics in On Certainty , carrying further Hutchinson's recent argument for the priority of therapy in Wittgenstein's project. In this article I discuss whether the line Hutchinson takes is extendable to the work of the Third Wittgenstein. For example, how does Wittgenstein's discussion of Moore's "refutation of idealism" in On Certainty work (...) as therapy when we think of it in "practice" terms? What practice? I suggest a further, but more tentative, step applying the therapeutic idea to seemingly insurmountable practical problems, where method is also at issue. (shrink)
Language based criticisms of the intelligibility of the programme of neuropsychology have made use of the principle that words the meaning of which is established in the context of descriptions of aspects of whole persons cannot be used in that sense to ascribe properties to parts of human bodies. In particular neither human brains nor their parts think, are conscious, imagine, suffer and so on. Recently, Bennett and Hacker have presented the error as a mereological fallacy, because brains are parts (...) of persons. However, while brains are parts of human bodies it is not clear that they are parts of persons. I restyle the argument in terms of fields of family resemblances, in such a way that it makes sense to describe the hippocampus as an organ for remembering, but does not support the claim that neuroscience is core psychology. Such fields are networks of meanings linked by two principles. (1) Taxonomies of relevant body parts are determined by the psychological role they play in everyday human life. (2) Many body parts are also identified by the role they play as tools in human activities including psychological tasks. Arguments are developed to show that objections to the idea that brains and their constituent organs are tools are misplaced. Hybrid psychologies are possible. (shrink)
One way of studying emotions which is sensitive to cultural differences is to analyze the vocabularies people use to describe their own and other’s emotions, which can be called the local emotionology. Wittgenstein’s concepts of language game and family resemblance can be used in this project. The result of research in this mode is a three-factor account of emotions, involving bodily perturbations, judgments of meanings, and the social force of emotion displays. This treatment of a psychological phenomenon is typical of (...) recent conceptions of psychology as a hybrid science, linking cognitive, cultural, and physiological phenomena. It can be seen as a further development of the cognitive account of emotions that has appeared in the last century. (shrink)
It behooves a science to pay careful attention to its ontological assumptions, especially in cases where they are likely to be complex. Psychology seems to require both material states of humans as organisms, and symbolic productions. But we must be careful not to think that the grammars of the latter are some sort of superscience. The duality shows up strongly in the difference between skilled perfomances and their material enabling conditions. I argue that the dual ontology appears in a science (...) of psychology as a hybrid grammar. If we try to colonize one or the other side of the hybrid by terms from the other, the transplanted terms make no sense in their new surroundings. We find ourselves with a double or hybrid grammar and three main patterns of action to explain, causal, habitual and monitored. By assimilating the latter two under the symbolic ontology apparent problems dissolve. This is illustrated with a sketch of the sources and character of the sense of personal uniqueness. (shrink)
The philosophical problem of the utility andmeaning of essences for chemistry cannot beresolved by Wittgenstein's principle thatessence cannot explain use, because use isdisplayed in a field of family resemblances.The transition of chemical taxonomy fromvernacular and mystical based terms to theorybased terms stabilized as a unified descriptivetaxonomy, removes chemical discourse from itsconnection with the vernacular. The transitioncan be tracked using the Lockean concepts ofreal and nominal essences, and the changingpriorities between them. Analyzing propertiesdispositionally, initiating a search forgroundings strengthens the case for (...) a logicalasymmetry between descriptive and explanatorydiscourses. Taxonomy is now driven byexplanatory concepts, but not including thosefrom quantum chemistry. (shrink)
In recent years there have been several attempts to construct inductive arguments for some version of scientific realism. Neither the characteristics of what would count as inductive evidence nor the conclusion to be inferred have been specified in ways that escape sceptical criticism. By introducing the pragmatic criterion of manipulative efficacy for a good theory and by sharpening the specification of the necessary inductive principle, the viability of a mutually supporting pair of argument forms are defended. It is shown that (...) by the use of these forms, taken together, a sequence of inductive arguments could be constructed, given suitable cases histories to serve as evidence. It also shown that the best inductive argument for the most daring realist claim is the weakest when compared with similarly structured arguments for less daring claims. (shrink)
Recent studies of Wittgenstein's later writing have made clear that they stand as a defence of two main ideas: that scepticism about the possibility of interpersonal discussions about our subjective feelings is misplaced and, as a seemingly startling corollary; that a mind state account of most 'mental activities' is incoherent. This leads to a great emphasis on skills and practices which, a fortiori, are definable only relationally, by reference to targets. In this paper I try to show that the 'computer' (...) analogue for the mind f ails on both of Wittgenstein's dimensions. There are no physiognomic language games in the computer centre, while the 'target' aspect of skill and practice concepts ties them in to a wholly human world. (shrink)
This article strongly argues the priority of symbolic, especially discursive, action over the material order in the genesis of social things. What turns a piece of stuff into a social object is its embedment in a narrative construction. The attribution of an active or a passive role to things in relation to persons is thus essentially story-relative: nothing happens or exists in the social world unless it is framed by human performative activity. Drawing on Gibson's notion of `affordance', Harré affirms (...) that material things may be disposed towards many different usages, and may acquire multiple identities according to different narrative constructions, even though the range of their possible `existences' is constrained by certain material features. Objects acquire their full significance only if one takes account of their double role in both the `practical' order, which includes social arrangements for maintaining life, and the `expressive' order, which creates hierarchies of honour and status, and which enjoys priority over the former. Reasoning from a microsociological constructionist perspective, Harré restates his view that there is nothing else to social life but symbolic exchanges and joint management of meaning, including the meaning of things; the illusion that some thing is real is merely an effect of certain interpretational grammars which remain stable across the generations or even the centuries. (shrink)
Uniquely comparative and sweeping in scope, One Thousand Years of Philosophy covers the history of Western thought alongside the Vedic philosophies of India, Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism, as well as Islamic and Jewish contributions to philosophy.
One of the roots of anti-science is an implausible account of experiments which opens up a seemingly unbridgeable gap between what it would be rational to believe on the basis of an empirical research programme and what scientists do believe. Post-modernists and others of a similar persuasion, for example Goodman, Rorty, Latour and Gergen, have marched into this alleged gap, insisting that experiments do not probe an independent reality, but create worlds to which they are perfectly tailored. In response I (...) argue that if experiments are understood as working models of parts of Nature, Nature domesticated, then there is no epistemic gap to fill. There are complexities with this thesis that can be resolved by developing a Bohrian account of the experiment as involving an indissoluble union of apparatus and Nature, giving us access, not to occurrent properties of the world but to affordances. (shrink)
Scientific realism asserts that the methods of science, combined with the intellectual powers of human beings can give us reliable knowledge of states of the world beyond the limits of perception. Among the varieties of realism, policy realism is based on the principle that taking plausible theories to be putative descriptions of actual states of affairs is the best way to design experiments and to advance our knowledge. We carve out the umwelt from the welt by the use of our (...) instruments and apparatus. The key procedure in science has been and still is the invention and testing of models---plausibility and empirical adequacy are the marks of a theory based on a model capable of supporting policy realism. (shrink)
The debate between emergentists and reductionists rests on the observation that in many situations, in which it seems desirable to work with a coherent and unified discourse, key predicates fall into different groups, such that pairs of members one taken from each group, cannot be co-predicated of some common subject. Must we settle for ‘island’ discourses in science and human affairs or is some route to a unified discourse still open? To make progress towards resolving the issue the conditions under (...) which such segregations of predicates seem inexorable must be brought out. The distinction between determinable and determinate properties throws light on some aspects of this problem. Bohr’s concept of complementarity, when combined with Gibson’s idea of an affordances as a special class of dispositional properties is helpful. Several seeming problems melt away, for example, how it is possible for a group of notes to become hearable as a melody. The mind-body problem and the viability of the project of reducing biology to chemistry and physics are two issues that are more difficult to deal with. Are mental phenomena, such as feelings and memories emergent from material systems or are they actually material properties themselves? Are the attributes of living beings emergent from certain accidental but long running collocations of chemical reactions, or are they nothing but chemical phenomena? If emergent, in what way are they distinctive from that from which they emerge? (shrink)
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