Most philosophical explorations of responsibility discuss the topic solely in terms of metaphysics and the "free will" problem. By contrast, these essays by leading philosophers view responsibility from a variety of perspectives -- metaphysics, ethics, action theory, and the philosophy of law. After a broad, framing introduction by the volume's editors, the contributors consider such subjects as responsibility as it relates to the "free will" problem; the relation between responsibility and knowledge or ignorance; the relation between causal and moral responsibility; (...) the difference, if any, between responsibility for actions and responsibility for omissions; the metaphysical requirements for making sense of "collective" responsibility; and the relation between moral and legal responsibility. The contributors include such distinguished authors as Alfred R. Mele, John Martin Fischer, George Sher, and Frances Kamm, as well as important rising scholars. Taken together, the essays in _Action, Ethics, and Responsibility_ offer a breadth of perspectives that is unmatched by other treatments of the topic. Contributors: Joseph Keim Campbell, David Chan, Randolph Clarke, E.J. Coffman, John Martin Fischer, Helen Frowe, Todd Jones, Frances Kamm, Antti Kauppinen, Alfred R. Mele, Michael O'Rourke, Paul Russell, Robert F. Schopp, George Sher, Harry S. Silverstein, Saul Smilansky, Donald Smith, Charles T. Wolfe The hardcover edition does not include a dust jacket. (shrink)
The concepts of time and identity seem at once unproblematic and frustratingly difficult. Time is an intricate part of our experience -- it would seem that the passage of time is a prerequisite for having any experience at all -- and yet recalcitrant questions about time remain. Is time real? Does time flow? Do past and future moments exist? Philosophers face similarly stubborn questions about identity, particularly about the persistence of identical entities through change. Indeed, questions about the metaphysics of (...) persistence take on many of the complexities inherent in philosophical considerations of time. This volume of original essays brings together these two essentially related concepts in a way not reflected in the available literature, making it required reading for philosophers working in metaphysics and students interested in these topics. The contributors, distinguished authors and rising scholars, first consider the nature of time and then turn to the relation of identity, focusing on the metaphysical connections between the two, with a special emphasis on personal identity. The volume concludes with essays on the metaphysics of death, issues in which time and identity play a significant role. This groundbreaking collection offers both cutting-edge epistemological analysis and historical perspectives on contemporary topics. Contributors:_ _Harriet Baber, Lynne Rudder Baker, Ben Bradley, John W. Carroll, Reinaldo Elugardo, Geoffrey Gorham, Mark Hinchliff, Jenann Ismael, Barbara Levenbook, Andrew Light, Lawrence B. Lombard, Ned Markosian, Harold Noonan, John Perry, Harry S. Silverstein, Matthew H. Slater, Robert J. Stainton, Neil A. Tognazzini The hardcover edition does not include a dust jacket. (shrink)
Many philosophers of language have held that a truth-conditional semantic account can explain the data motivating the distinction between referential and attributive uses of definite descriptions, but I believe this is a mistake. I argue that these data also motivate what I call “dual-aspect” uses as a distinct but closely related type. After establishing that an account of the distinction must also explain dual-aspect uses, I argue that the truth-conditional Semantic Model of the distinction cannot. Thus, the Semantic Model cannot (...) explain the data for which it is developed and so fails as an account of the referential/attributive distinction. (shrink)
Genomic research results and incidental findings with health implications for a research participant are of potential interest not only to the participant, but also to the participant's family. Yet investigators lack guidance on return of results to relatives, including after the participant's death. In this paper, a national working group offers consensus analysis and recommendations, including an ethical framework to guide investigators in managing this challenging issue, before and after the participant's death.
Given the importance of cross-disciplinary research, facilitating CDR effectiveness is a priority for many institutions and funding agencies. There are a number of CDR types, however, and the effectiveness of facilitation efforts will require sensitivity to that diversity. This article presents a method characterizing a spectrum of CDR designed to inform facilitation efforts that relies on bibliometric techniques and citation data. We illustrate its use by the Toolbox Project, an ongoing effort to enhance cross-disciplinary communication in CDR teams through structured, (...) philosophical dialogue about research assumptions in a workshop setting. Toolbox Project workshops have been conducted with more than 85 research teams, but the project's extensibility to an objectively characterized range of CDR collaborations has not been examined. To guide wider application of the Toolbox Project, we have developed a method that uses multivariate statistical analyses of transformed citation proportions from published manuscripts to identify candidate areas of CDR, and then overlays information from previous Toolbox participant groups on these areas to determine candidate areas for future application. The approach supplies 3 results of general interest: A way to employ small data sets and familiar statistical techniques to characterize CDR spectra as a guide to scholarship on CDR patterns and trends. A model for using bibliometric techniques to guide broadly applicable interventions similar to the Toolbox. A method for identifying the location of collaborative CDR teams on a map of scientific activity, of use to research administrators, research teams, and other efforts to enhance CDR projects. (shrink)
Overview -/- Most philosophical explorations of responsibility discuss the topic solely in terms of metaphysics and the "free will" problem. By contrast, these essays by leading philosophers view responsibility from a variety of perspectives—metaphysics, ethics, action theory, and the philosophy of law. After a broad, framing introduction by the volume's editors, the contributors consider such subjects as responsibility as it relates to the "free will" problem; the relation between responsibility and knowledge or ignorance; the relation between causal and moral responsibility; (...) the difference, if any, between responsibility for actions and responsibility for omissions; the metaphysical requirements for making sense of "collective" responsibility; and the relation between moral and legal responsibility. (shrink)
This article critically examines the recent papal allocution on patients in a persistent vegetative state with regard to the appropriate conditions for considering “reformable statements.” In the first part of the article, the purpose and meaning of the allocution are assessed. O'Rourke concludes that given consideration of the individual patient's best interest, prolonging artificial nutrition and hydration is not, in every case, the best option. Although he stresses favorability for preservation of the life of the patient through artificial nutrition (...) and hydration, costs and benefits to the patient should be weighed. Ultimately, he argues in favor of leaving the decision to the patient, his caregivers, and others immediately involved in the case. (shrink)
From 1968 until his death in 2003, Gerald Hanratty was professor of philosophy at University College Dublin. In this volume to his memory, Fran O'Rourke has assembled twenty-six essays reflecting Hanratty's broad philosophical interests, dealing with central questions of human existence and the ultimate meaning of the universe. Whether engaged in historical investigations into Gnosticism or the Enlightenment, Hanratty was concerned with fundamental themes in the philosophy of religion and philosophical anthropology. _Human Destinies_ brings together a wide range of (...) approaches to central questions of human nature and destiny. Included are historical studies of classical thinkers of the ancient and medieval periods and of modern authors. "This volume offers a significant contribution to the various fields within philosophy addressed by its authors. Many of the essays have an intrinsic contemporary appeal to scholars and intellectuals concerned with matters touching on both philosophical and theological issues of significance." —_Glenn Hughes, St. Mary's University, San Antonio_. (shrink)
John J. Cleary was an internationally recognised authority in ancient Greek philosophy. This volume of penetrating studies of Plato, Aristotle, and Proclus, philosophy of mathematics, and ancient theories of education, display Cleary’s range of expertise and originality of approach.
This collection of original essays on the topics of causation and explanation offers readers a state-of-the-art view of current work in these areas. The book is notable for its interdisciplinary character, and the essays, by distinguished authors and important rising scholars, will be of interest to a wide readership, including philosophers, computer scientists, and economists. Students and scholars alike will find the book valuable for its wide-ranging treatment of two difficult philosophical topics.The volume focuses first on the development of theories (...) of causation and explanation, and then on the application of those theories. Theoretical discussions include Patrick Suppes's investigation of the causal issues surrounding intentional activities such as computation and decision making, and Clark Glymour and Frank Wimberly's analysis of technical issues encountered in formulating an account of actual causation. The essays exploring applications include Nancy Cartwright's examination of the application of counterfactuals to economics and Alfred Mele's criticism of the work of Benjamin Libet on the applicability of experimental results in psychology to philosophical analyses of free will and self-control.Causation and Explanation offers a remarkably wide-ranging set of essays on two topics that present difficult philosophical issues. (shrink)
In this article we argue that philosophy can facilitate improvement in cross-disciplinary science. In particular, we discuss in detail the Toolbox Project, an effort in applied epistemology that deploys philosophical analysis for the purpose of enhancing collaborative, cross-disciplinary scientific research through improvements in cross-disciplinary communication. We begin by sketching the scientific context within which the Toolbox Project operates, a context that features a growing interest in and commitment to cross-disciplinary research (CDR). We then develop an argument for the leading idea (...) behind this effort, namely, that philosophical dialogue can improve cross-disciplinary science by effecting epistemic changes that lead to better group communication. On the heels of this argument, we describe our approach and its output; in particular, we emphasize the Toolbox instrument that generates philosophical dialogue and the Toolbox workshop in which that dialogue takes place. Together, these constitute a philosophical intervention into the life of CDR teams. We conclude by considering the philosophical implications of this intervention. (shrink)
It is argued that core areas of philosophy can benefit from reflection on cross-disciplinary research (CDR). We start by giving a brief account of CDR, describing its variability and some of the ways in which philosophers can interact with it. We then provide an argument in principle for the conclusion that CDR is philosophically fecund, arguing that since CDR highlights fundamental differences among disciplinary research worldviews, it can be used to motivate new philosophical problems and supply new insights into old (...) problems. We close by providing an argument by example that uses the epistemology of peer disagreement to establish the potential of CDR for core philosophical areas. With this argument, we aim to demonstrate how the complex research contexts that CDR affords can point the way toward important avenues of epistemological research by highlighting potential limitations of key epistemological components, such as peerage and uniqueness. (shrink)
These fifteen original essays address the core semantic concepts of reference and referring from both philosophical and linguistic perspectives. After an introductory essay that casts current trends in reference and referring in terms of an ongoing dialogue between Fregean and Russellian approaches, the book addresses specific topics, balancing breadth of coverage with thematic unity. The contributors, all leading or emerging scholars, address trenchant neo-Fregean challenges to the direct reference position; consider what positive claims can be made about the mechanism of (...) reference; address the role of a theory of reference within broader theoretical context; and investigate other kinds of linguistic expressions used in referring activities that may themselves be referring expressions. The topical unity and accessibility of the essays, the stage-setting introductory essay, and the comprehensive index combine to make R _eference and Referring_, along with the other books in the Topics in Contemporary Philosophy series, appropriate for use in advanced undergraduate and graduate courses. (shrink)
Philosophical reflections on the environment began with early philosophers' invocation of a cosmology that mixed natural and supernatural phenomena. Today, the central philosophical problem posed by the environment involves not what it can teach us about ourselves and our place in the cosmic order but rather how we can understand its workings in order to make better decisions about our own conduct regarding it. The resulting inquiry spans different areas of contemporary philosophy, many of which are represented by the fifteen (...) original essays in this volume. The contributors first consider conceptual problems generated by rapid advances in biology and ecology, examining such topics as ecological communities, adaptation, and scientific consensus. The contributors then turn to epistemic and axiological issues, first considering philosophical aspects of environmental decision making and then assessing particular environmental policies, including reparations, remediation, and nuclear power, from a normative perspective. (shrink)
O'Brien & Opie's admirably sharp hypothesis gains some of its force by ignoring distinctions in murky areas. I attempt to agitate the waters by suggesting that process and vehicle theories are not so different, that classicism can support a vehicle theory, and that several of the key concepts underlying their theory are less clear than depicted. The connection to information I find especially tenuous. Finally, I address the implications of their theory for unconscious thought.
Since 1994 the experimental art project, Paris-Réseau, has been a “(net)work in progress”. Texts, images and sounds gathered in various ways before, during and after a performance by the group Art-Réseaux at the Paris Video Library form different layers in the Paris-Réseau Archives, a hypermedia database. Paris-Réseau assembles photographs, sound samples, videos and texts to form a composite image of the city, combining digitised traces of physical places and people with information garnered from individual and collective memory.Paris-Réseau comprises at least (...) five projects. It began very simply, gradually expanding to encompass different time frames and a very large number of paths throughout the city. Then in an effort to compose all this disparate information into a coherent whole, I began zooming in on selected itineraries. Here I will just sketch out the first phases of this project which have already been described at greater length in an article published in Leonardo. (O'Rourke 1996). (shrink)
What effect does witnessing other students cheat have on one's own cheating behavior? What roles do moral attitudes and neutralizing attitudes (justifications for behavior) play when deciding to cheat? The present research proposes a model of academic dishonesty which takes into account each of these variables. Findings from experimental (vignette) and survey methods determined that seeing others cheat increases cheating behavior by causing students to judge the behavior less morally reprehensible, not by making rationalization easier. Witnessing cheating also has unique (...) effects, controlling for other variables. (shrink)
We surveyed IRB chairs' perspectives on offering individual genetic research results to participants and families, including family members of deceased participants, and the IRB's role in addressing these issues. Given a particular hypothetical scenario, respondents favored offering results to participants but not family members, giving choices at the time of initial consent, and honoring elicited choices. They felt IRBs should have authority regarding the process issues, but a more limited role in medical and scientific issues.
Reflexivity is a complex phenomenon. In this chapter, we are primarily interested in reflexivity insofar as it is a process of discovering for oneself and one’s audiences the perspectival features (e.g., background assumptions, social positions, and biases) that shape one’s judgments, decisions, and behaviors. So understood, reflexivity isn’t always a good idea. Sometimes thinking can get in the way of doing. (Downhill ski racing springs to mind.) But for some activities, such as action research, reflexivity is critical for doing the (...) activity well. While the value of reflexivity for action research is well understood, we believe that there is a form of reflexivity underappreciated in some research circles – philosophical reflexivity. In this chapter, we outline this form, argue for its importance in sound action research, and offer a technique, the Toolbox approach, for facilitating it. (shrink)
These essays by leading scholars illustrate the complexity and range of philosophical issues raised by consideration of law and social justice. The contributors to Law and Social Justice examine such broad foundational issues as instrumentalist versus Kantian conceptions of rights as well as such specific problems as the admissibility or inadmissibility of evidence of causation in toxic tort cases. They consider a variety of subjects, including the implications of deliberative democracy for privacy rights, equality as a principle of distributive justice, (...) the paradox of "moral luck," the treatment of intellectual property in China and its roots in Chinese tradition, and the extent to which initial acquisition of goods yields full property rights. Two special sections at the end of the volume discuss the treatment of law and social justice issues in the work of two philosophers: "Wittgenstein and Legal Theory," on the influence of Wittgenstein's thought on legal philosophy, and a discussion of Jules L. Coleman's The Practice of Principle, which concludes with a contribution, "Facts, Fictions, and the Grounds of Law," by Coleman himself. (shrink)
_What Happened in and to Moral Philosophy in the Twentieth Century? _is a volume of essays originally presented at University College Dublin in 2009 to celebrate the eightieth birthday of Alasdair MacIntyre—a protagonist at the center of that very question. What marks this collection is the unusual range of approaches and perspectives, representing divergent and even contradictory positions. Such variety reflects MacIntyre's own intellectual trajectory, which led him to engage successively with various schools of thought: analytic, Marxist, Christian, atheist, Aristotelian, (...) Augustinian, and Thomist. This collection presents a unique profile of twentieth-century moral philosophy and is itself an original contribution to ongoing debate. The volume begins with Alasdair MacIntyre's fascinating philosophical self-portrait, "On Having Survived the Academic Moral Philosophy of the Twentieth Century," which charts his own intellectual development. The first group of essays considers MacIntyre's revolutionary contribution to twentieth-century moral philosophy: its value in understanding and guiding human action, its latent philosophical anthropology, its impetus in the renewal of the Aristotelian tradition, and its application to contemporary interests. The next group of essays considers the complementary and competing traditions of emotivism, Marxism, Thomism, and phenomenology. A third set of essays presents thematic analyses of such topics as evolutionary ethics, accomplishment and just desert, relativism, evil, and the inescapability of ethics. MacIntyre responds with a final essay, "What Next?" which addresses questions raised by contributors to the volume. "This is an impressive collection of essays, which deserves a wide audience. The book makes an original contribution to the field, since its retrospective of twentieth-century moral philosophy goes beyond the Anglophone mainstream, tackling Catholic and continental as well as Anglophone analytical thought. Given this and given its dedication to Alasdair MacIntyre, there is a strong chance that it will be read by philosophers, sociologists, historians, and cultural theorists." —_Tom Angier, University of Kent_. (shrink)