This paper is concerned with the notion of ambiguity—or what I shall refer to more generally as homonymy—and its bearing upon various familiar puzzles about intensional contexts. It would hardly of course be a novel claim that the unravelling of such puzzles may well involve recourse to something like ambiguity. After all, Frege, who bequeathed to us one of the most enduring of the puzzles, proposed as part of his solution an analysis of intensional contexts according to which all expressions (...) change their sense when embedded in such contexts. And many contemporary philosophers who have discussed the puzzles, while not perhaps endorsing Frege's own somewhat extreme view, nevertheless take ambiguities in the contained sentences to be the key to the puzzles. In this paper, however, I wish to follow those who take the crucial source of homonymy, at least in the most difficult of the puzzles, to lie primarily not in the embedded sentences, but rather in the intensional verbs that embed them. I begin with a brief examination of certain aspects of ambiguity and homonymy. (shrink)
A layman's guide to the mechanics of Gödel's proof together with a lucid discussion of the issues which it raises. Includes an essay discussing the significance of Gödel's work in the light of Wittgenstein's criticisms.
Among the most outstanding discoveries of the last century is one that is not quite as momentous as the theory of relativity or cybernetics. It may even still be enigmatic. It has no one single author, it is not expressed in a single formula, conception, or invention. Nonetheless it is worth all the others combined.
The purpose of Donald Winch’s "historiographic revision" is to show that most recent interpretations of Smith have distorted his meaning because they have misread the intention of Smith’s work, treating it either as the first great justification of the nascent liberal capitalist polity, or as such a justification infiltrated by intimations of the Marxian notion of alienation. In Winch’s view, either account of Smith’s project is misleading by virtue of imposing nineteenth-century perspectives and categories upon "what is quintessentially a work (...) of the eighteenth century." The problem, then, is to determine the historically appropriate context or problematic within which the complex and at times paradoxical thought of the Wealth of Nations, the Theory of Moral Sentiments, and the Lectures on Jurisprudence can reasonably be situated. As Winch notes, his study is an application of the contextualist methodological principles of Quentin Skinner and J. G. A. Pocock, and is similar in design to recent works on Locke by John Dunn and on Hume by Duncan Forbes. (shrink)
This article presents a set of moral arguments regarding the selective abortion of fetuses on the basis of prenatal screening for late onset genetic diseases only, and for Huntington's Disease* in particular. After discussion of human suffering, human perfection and the distinctive features of the lives of people confronting late onset genetic disease, the author concludes that selective abortion is difficult to justify ethically, although it must remain a matter of personal choice.
The topic of this Handbook entry is the relationship between similarity and dimensional analysis, and some of the philosophical issues involved in understanding and making use of that relationship. Discusses basics of the relationship between units, dimensions, and quantities. It explains the significance of dimensionless parameters, and explains that similarity of a physical systems is established by showing equality of a certain set of dimensionless parameters that characterizes the system behavior. Similarity is always relative -- to some system behavior. Other (...) topics discussed: generalization of the notion of similarity, the difference between relative similarity and partial similarity; how the notion of similarity in science differs from similarity as it has been discussed in recent philosophy. Philosophers' views discussed: R. Giere, N. Goodman, P. Bridgman, and B. Ellis. (shrink)
In spite of the labours of Sedlmayer,1 Ehwald2 and Palmer,3 it cannot be said that there exists a completely satisfactory edition of Ovid's Heroides. One or all of these editors sometimes leave a corrupted text, sometimes adhere too closely to a manuscript reading, and sometimes introduce untenable emendations. A new edition is called for, with revised collati ons of the known manuscripts, and an augmented apparatus criticus, exhibiting the large class of what I may term the ‘Vulgate’ manuscripts, which represents (...) a tradition different from, and probably later than that of our chief authority, the excellent but unfortunately incomplete eleventh-century Parisinus , which, like all primary manuscripts of this type, contains many readings or corruptions which should not on account of its mere authority be accepted slavishly. Light is often thrown on the text from less important sources, and the truth may be recovered from manuscripts of the ‘Vulgate’ family, where our better authority fails. In this connexion the study of my own manuscript has led me to some conclusions in certain passages which I venture to set forth as suggestions towards an improved constitution of the text of the Heroides. Though it is clear from the preceding investigation into its nature that O is no primary manuscript, but belongs rather to that large class which has passed through various stages of reproduction involving alterations due either to carelessness of copyists or, more rarely, to deliberate alteration, it presents at the same time a phenomenon not unusual with such manuscripts, inasmuch as it often supports the best tradition, and in some cases preserves a reading which yields the truth, or from which the truth can be elucidated. I have used the following symbols: P = Parisinus 8242 s. xi. E = Etonensis s. xi. G = Gueferbytanus s. xii. V = Schedae Vindobonenses s xii. O = my manuscript s. xiv. D = Dresdensis s. xiii. ω = all or the majonly of the ‘Vulgate’ manuscripts. ζ = some of these manuscripts. (shrink)
quam dolor hie umquam spatio euanescere possit,leniat aut odium tempus et hora meum.Here “spatio” means “lapse of time” : it is illustrated by A. A. II. 113forma bonum fragile est, quantumque accedit ad annos,fit minor et spatio carpitur ipsa suo.As regards the whole couplet, besides at this place, it is found also after line 40 in all the MSS. except the Galeanus Vaticanus and Phillipps MS. There, though it fits in with the context, it is not required: here it is (...) indispensable. It should therefore be omitted from the text after line 40, where its presence is due to that species of interpolation which consisted in the insertion of other portions of a writer's work kindred in meaning, on which see Mr. Hall's Companion to Classical Texts, p. 198. (shrink)
Putting Wittgenstein's writing into an historical context that includes scientific and technological developments as well as cultural and intellectual works can be helpful in understanding some of Wittgenstein's works. I focus on the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus in particular in this paper, and on topics related to pictures and models: the development of audio recording technologies, the development of miniature scale models that were both aesthetically pleasing and scientifically useful, particularly in the forensics of traffic accidents, and the culmination of a centuries-long (...) effort to articulate the method behind the use of physical modeling, i.e., the formulation of a concept presented in 1914 and dubbed "physically similar systems.". (shrink)