continent. 1.4 (2011): 242—252. Introduction The following two works were produced by visual artist Jonas Staal and writer Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei during a visit as artists in residence at The Bag Factory, Johannesburg, South Africa during the summer of 2010. Both works were produced in situ and comprised in both cases a public intervention conceived by Staal and a textual work conceived by Van Gerven Oei. It was their aim, in both cases, to produce complementary works that could (...) be read “through each other,” in which the movement of artistic construction would be imitated by textual deconstruction and vice versa. Both works deal with the way in which capital, apartheid, and monumentality are interwoven in South-African society. The Missing Link addresses a monument for democracy, erected on the premises of a private corporation running both an amusement park and the Apartheid Museum franchise. The textual intervention accompanying this public intervention investigates the limits of the inclusiveness of the anti-discrimination section in the South-African constitution, itself a monumental work of democracy. The Monument for the Distribution of Wealth deals with the history and eventual dissolution of a monumental square, commemorating the Soweto Uprising, in one of the poorest townships of Johannesburg. The history accompanying this public dismemberment of memory is equally fragmented, which is expressed by the many voices recounting uncertain and perhaps even irrelevant “facts” about the genius loci, the way in which the memorial space has actually entered into the memory of the inhabitants surrounding it. Next to their individual practices, Staal and Van Gerven Oei have worked together on a number of projects ever since 2007, including several art residencies. Their work involves an investigation of the different interfaces between art, politics, and public space in media ranging from theater and public interventions, to video installations and (co-authored) textual works. The Missing Link Missing Link (1) Missing Link (2) Missing Link (3) Intervention on the monument entitled The Seven Pillars of the Constitution , part of the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, South Africa. The Seven Pillars represent the constitutional values propagated in South Africa since the abolition of the apartheid regime. The monument and museum were built by the Gold Reef Resorts corporation, which is also responsible for the theme park and casino next to it. By placing the word “capitalism” on the wall surrounding the museum, the capitalist system and the constant social divisions that it implies are interpreted as sophistic continuations of apartheid politics. Through the capitalist system, apartheid is still operational within South African society. Whereas during the apartheid regime, the separation clearly ran along race divisions, in the current, “democratic” system, the same actual separation is sustained without it being an explicit element of the foundations of the country, i.e. the constitution. This intervention foregrounds the constant role of capitalism is both periods. At the same time the intervention acknowledges that contemporary Western artisthood is a mirror of the privileges that are offered by the capitalist system, and the type of artist that it produces. The intervention initiates a critical discourse concerning the capitalist system situated within the disaster of capitalism itself, in other words: through the desire to break with the presumption that art would be able to operate outside the capitalist system and to confirm that art—and the artist himself—is in fact modeled on this system. The public intervention by Staal was supplemented by a textual intervention by Van Gerven Oei: a proposition to alter the seventeenth amendment of the South African constitution. Even though the anti-discrimination legislation in South-Africa is one of the most stringent and inclusive in the world, one factor—wealth—remains outside its scope, thus continuing the schisms along racial lines produced during the apartheid regime: §9.3. The state may not unfairly discriminate directly or indirectly against anyone on one or more grounds, including race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital status, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, language, birth, and wealth. Monument for the Distribution of Wealth Intervention concerning the June 16 Memorial Acre in Central Western Jabavu, one of the poorest townships of Johannesburg. The monument comprises a park on which different are placed recalling an important protest the black population against the former apartheid regime. In 1976, from a school adjacent to the park, they started a massive protest against the introduction of Afrikaans in the school curriculum. The police reacted violently, and shot several hundreds of students. The construction of the June 16 Memorial Acre was started in 2005, and from the start was the paragon of corruption. Coordinated by local politicians, some family members of the protest leader from 1976 gained control of the realization of the monument, outside the regulation through external institutions. The available budget of 41 million rand (at that time well over 5 million euro) was largely embezzled. In the meantime, the monument has become fully dilapidated and defaced. The park has become overgrown with weeds and covered in a layer of dirt, and the local population is slowly plundering the square to use the material for the construction and decoration of their own houses. The Monument for the Distribution of Wealth develops the dynamics already existent around the June 16 Memorial Acre. Without obtaining official permission in advance, several local inhabitants were hired to break down the monument, sort the materials, and offer it to the neighborhood. Thus, the redistribution of wealth after the fall of the apartheid regime is finally taking place, albeit from the mere remains of the capital that was once invested in the community. The words “monument” and “for free” are spray-painted on the stacks of material, both in English and Zulu, as these are locally the most common languages. Van Gerven Oei supplemented Staal’s public intervention with an account of the history of the monument based on a series of interviews. The account clarifies how the different interests within the protest 1976 are reflected in the exceeding decay of the park, and how in the end those interests were represented by the June 16 Memorial Acre. Monument for the Distribution of Wealth 1: Removing stones Monument for the Distribution of Wealth 3: Pulling down statues Monument for the Distribution of Wealth 4: Offering the material Monument for the Distribution of Wealth 5: Offering the material Monument for the Distribution of Wealth 6 The next day A Fragmentary History of the Monument for the Distribution of Wealth, Formerly Known as the June 16 Memorial Acre in Central Western Jabavu, Soweto Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei The following text, based on interviews and online research aims to provide parts of a history of the park in front of Morris Isaacson High School in Central Western Jabavu, Soweto. The idea for the transformation of the park into a memorial site has its source in the events of June 16, 1976: the start of the the student uprising in Soweto. The development of the park was started in the early 1980s, and the actual transformation into a memorial site, the June 16 Memorial Acre, was initiated in 2005. Over the last few years, several monumental additions have been made to the park: A marble monument with three pillars was revealed on June 16, 2006. A sculpture of a book and several billboards on June 16, 2008. A sculpture of student leader Tsietsi Mashinini on June 16, 2010. The park was transformed into the Monument for the Distribution of Wealth on August 3, 2010. According to the entry “Youth Struggle” on the website South African History Online, the Bantu Education Act was introduced in 1953 . In 1954 , Dr Verwoerd, Minister of Native Affairs, stated: “What is the use of teaching the Bantu child mathematics when it cannot use it in practice? That is quite absurd.” According to the entry “Soweto uprising” on Wikipedia, the Afrikaans Medium Decree was issued in 1974 , forcing all black schools to use Afrikaans and English in a 50-50 mix as languages of instruction. The Regional Director of Bantu Education (Northern Transvaal Region), J.G. Erasmus, told Circuit Inspectors and Principals of Schools that from January 1, 1975 , Afrikaans had to be used for mathematics, arithmetic, and social studies from standard five (7th grade). English would be the medium for general science and practical subjects. Indigenous languages would be used for religion instruction, music, and physical culture. According the entry “Soweto uprising” on Wikipedia, on April 30, 1976 , students from the Orlando West Junior School in Soweto went on strike, refusing to go to school. Their example was followed by other schools in Soweto. A student from Morris Isaacson High School, Toboho “Tsietsi” Mashinini, proposed a meeting on June 13, 1976 to discuss further action. According to Weizmann Hamilton’s article “The Soweto Uprising 1976,” which appeared in the September 1986 edition of Inqaba Ya Basebenzi (Fortress of the Revolution), on June 13, 1976 , the South African Students’ Movement called a meeting at the Donaldson Community Center in Orlando. 300-400 Students representing 55 schools decided to hold a mass demonstration on June 16. According to Brian Mokhele, member of the Joint Community Safety Forum, Dr Edelstein was the first victim of the Soweto uprising and killed the day before the march on June 15, 1976 . Edelstein was an administrator at the pass office in Jabavu and gave golf courses to the local community. Edelstein was put in a garbage bin and pierced by pickaxes. The garbage bin was left at the very spot of the murder for many years. A few years ago, a child was beheaded at the same spot, and the basketball court next to it has been abandoned since. According to Marcus Neustetter, founder of the Trinity Session, this story is untrue. According the entry “Soweto uprising” on Wikipedia, on June 16 , Tsietsi Mashinini led students from Morris Isaacson High School to join up with others who walked from Naledi High School. A crowd of between 3,000 and 10,000 eventually ended up near Orlando High School. According to Raymond Marlowe, a local photographer, Tsietsi Mashinini was heading the march. According to the entry “Hector Pieterson” on Wikipedia, Dr Edelstein died on June 16, 1976 , stoned to death by mob and left with a sign around his neck proclaiming “Beware Afrikaaners.” The first child to die that day was called Hastings Ndlovu. According to Pat Motsiri, Orlando West is claiming struggle heritage through the Hector Pieterson Museum, while Hector Pieterson was from Jabavu. According to Pat Motsiri, his generation effectively struggled between 1980 and 1991, forcing the release of Nelson Mandela and negotiations with the apartheid regime while the 1976-generation was safely in exile. Nevertheless, this has not been recognized in any monument. After the abolition of apartheid, the generation from 1976 returned from exile, occupied important government and ANC positions, creating an abundance of 1976 memorials and refusing to acknowledge that this was only possible because of the younger generation’s struggle. He calls this a generational conflict. According to Archibald Dlamini, the park officer responsible for the Memorial Acre, he started working for the municipality in 1978. In 1981/82 , Isaac Makhele from Pimville, who used to work in the cemetery business, was the first developer of the park. It used to be just a normal park until City Parks decided to develop the Memorial Acre in 2006. In 2007 the work was stopped by the community. According to Brian Mokhele, he left the country in 1989 after he participated in the riots of 1986. But when he returned in 1999 he found that nothing had changed. He says that they were promised to be protected by the Constitution, but that reality is different. The police uses fear to suppress them so that they don’t come out to talk openly. He has been arrested twice, both times harassed and tortured by the police, but in the end always released without indictment. He says that this is their way to threaten communities to back off from politics. According to Moses, who is sitting outside rolling a joint, Brian knows everything. He tells Brian to tell me everything he knows. According to Brian Mokhele, Tsietsi Mashinini was possibly murdered in 1990 during his exile in New York. Two weeks before he was supposed to return to South Africa, his papers in order, he was found dead under mysterious circumstances. His coffin was sealed when he was buried. According to Pat Motsiri, he came up with the idea for the Memorial Acre in 2003 . He submitted the documents for the proposal to the council, which sidelined him as soon as the budget came out in 2005 . According to Brian Mokhele, there was on estimation R 41,000,000 spent to redesign the park and turn it into the Memorial Acre. The millions were divided by Amos Masondo, the mayor of Soweto, the local councilor Bongani D. Zondi, and the director of the city of Johannesburg, Pat Lephunya. They were dividing the money between several contractors: Tsietsi Mashinini’s brothers were involved in the development of the park, they got the tender to do the green areas, the landscaping. Construction was done by other companies, some did the paving, the toilets, etc. EMBA, a private company appointed by the municipality was in control of the money flow, but the money was quickly gone. According to Raymond Marlowe, the contractor bought a BMW with the money. According to Archibald Dlamini, the Mashinini brothers got the tender, so the space would look more like the other places around in Soweto. It was agreed that after they were done, they would return the property to the municipality. They did whatever they could do. According to Mafaisa, a member of the Jabavu business community, he was one of the contractors for the landscaping and the pavement under Mpho Mashinini, one of the brothers. He says that I should contact Mavi for information on Mpho. According to Poi Stuurman, a local youth worker, Mafaisa is one of the guys who ran away with the money. According to Mavi, Mpho Mashinini was never a contractor. The contracts were organized by Sbu Butelezi, the former head of the Gauteng Department for Public Works. The June 16 Foundation and the Mashinini brothers will be the beneficiaries of the park when it is finished. According to Brian Mokhele, City Parks did not accept the Memorial Acre because it was not finished. The rest of the year, the unfinished park is not maintained, as should have happened. This was done deliberately so that in the end they can just clean the whole thing up and have a reason to redo the whole park. According to Brian Mokhele, the Mashinini brothers now work for the government. People that manipulate for money purposes always come from the government’s side. Because the park was left unfinished, the people from the neighborhood are taking away the stones to decorate their own homes with. According to Archibald Dlamini, because City Parks doesn’t accept responsibility of the park, he officially has nothing the guard, except for his cottage, which is municipal property. The thieves come at night and destroy the park, but he cannot do anything because he is sleeping. According to the website of the Thanda Foundation on June 16, 2006 a bronze statue of Hector Pieterson, the first child to die in the 1976 protests, made by Kobus Hattingh and Jacob Maponyane was unveiled in the Maponya Mall in Soweto. The statue is sculpted after the famous image shot by Sam Nzima of Mbuyisa Makhubo carrying the dead body of the boy. The sculpture was sponsored by the Thanda Foundation, founded by the Swedish entrepreneur Dan Olofsson and South-African entrepreneur Matthews Phosa. According to the official website of the City of Johannesburg, the Memorial Acre and Artwork were unveiled in 2006. According to a blog post on sowetouprisings.com, the Memorial Acre was still under development on July 24, 2006. According to Archibald Dlamini, City Parks only cleans up the park once a year just before the June 16 celebrations. Everybody is waiting for the Mashinini brothers to finish their job. The last time he talked with them was in 2007 . According to a sign on the school grounds of the Morris Isaacson High School, the June 16 Trail will be finished in 2008 . According to a blog post on sowetouprisings.com, the Memorial Acre contains another monument erected in Tsietsi’s honor. The monument was created as part of the Sunday Times Heritage Public Art program. Its physical form resembles a giant book which symbolizes the crisis in education experienced in 1976. On the face of the book is the map of the route taken by the students from Morris Isaacson High School in Central Western Jabavu to Phefeni Junior Secondary in Orlando West (currently the site of the Hector Pieterson Museum), while the back cover of the ‘book’ is inscribed with a tribute to Tsietsi Mashinini. The monument was revealed on June 16, 2008 . According to Marcus Neustetter, the billboards on the Memorial Acre were part of a school project realized in 2008. Following several workshops, the students from different high schools along the June 16 Trail were invited to work with artists on the billboards, while the neighborhood community was invited to watch the process during the festivities on June 15 and 16, 2008 . The billboards were supposed to be removed because of construction works on the Memorial Acre, which never ended up happening. According to Brian Mokhele, the former toilet facilities were converted into a house for the park officer. This park officer has been working for city parks for more than 12-15 years, but does nothing here, because the park, including the new toilet buildings, is not finished. The government is now moving around looking for people to take this job because they stopped it. They confronted everybody who was going in and chased them away. According to John, in 2009 , some girls, around 16 or 17 years old, were raped by four men who had been drinking in a local shebeen. When the bar quit they said that they would go home by car, but instead raped the girls on the Memorial Acre nearby. This happened in the unfinished toilets, because the doors couldn’t be closed. According to Brian Mokhele, there used to be some fences around the park because of the construction work that was eventually stopped, but these were also stolen. According to Archibald Dlamini, people from the neighborhood started about two and a half years ago, and the last piece was stolen near the end of 2009 . Sometimes he would catch someone with a roll of fence, and then use it for his own cottage. According to the official website of the City of Johannesburg, a statue of Tsietsi Mashinini by Johannes Pokhela was revealed on June 16, 2010 , “Youth Day.” According to Shirley Makutoane, deputy principal of Isaac Morrison High School, the statue of Tsietsi Mashinini, funded by the June 16 Foundation, has temporarily been placed within the school perimeter. The statue will be moved to the Memorial Acre when it will be finished, in 2011 . According to Brian Mokhele, beside the June 16 Foundation, there is also a June 16 Memorial Acre Foundation. Both foundations are quarreling about the money involved in the Memorial Acre project. Nobody knows who’s involved in them. According to Marcus Neustetter, the June 16 Foundation consists of people that were part of 1976 protest movement, local government officials, representatives of the Hector Pieterson Museum, and the council. According to students from the Isaac Morrison High School, the statue of Tsietsi Mashinini is on the school ground because on the Memorial Acre it would be vandalized by youths from White City, an adjacent neighborhood. Accorcing to Brian Mokhele, the statue of Tsietsi should eventually be mounted on the Memorial Acre. It is wrong that the statue is in the school at the moment, because it is not a public school. He wants the statues to depict the massiveness of the force that was coming into Soweto after the protests. According to Brian Mokhele, City Parks, City of Jo’burg, City Lights, and SAPS are making some sort of plan to take the plan back. They want to remove the trees from the Memorial Acre, and redesign the Memorial Acre into a relaxing park, without political content. They want to depoliticize the square. In doing so,they will have their own employment and not use local workforces. According to Brian Mokhele, the community wants to remove the monuments, amphitheater, and sculptures from the Memorial Acre because they do not resemble anything. The sculptures should be depicting the truth of what happened, because the Memorial Acre is a political heritage site. He wants to involve the people that actually participated in the struggle to make the monument so that everyone can enjoy it and get a better understanding of the struggle heritage. Therefore, he proposes collective ideology in which everyone has a say. This would prevent future vandalization of the monument. According to Pat Motsiri, the sculptures must depict the event around June 16, 1976. Like the story of Dr Edelstein, who was pierced by pickaxes, forced into a garbage bin and burned alive. According to Jonas Staal, the Memorial Acre should be destroyed, its elements stacked on pallets, thus forming the Monument for the Distribution of Wealth . According to Mafaisa, his men can do the work quickly. He has about twenty men working under him. (shrink)
In ‘Other Minds’, J.L. Austin advances a parallel between saying ‘I know’ and saying ‘I promise’: much as you are ‘prohibited’, he says, from saying ‘I promise I will, but I may fail’, you are also ‘prohibited’ from saying ‘I know it is so, but I may be wrong’. This treatment of ‘I know’ has been derided for nearly sixty years: while saying ‘I promise’ amounts to performing the act of promising, Austin seems to miss the fact that saying ‘I (...) know’ fails to constitute a performance of the act of knowing. In this paper, I advance a defense of Austin’s position. I diagnose the principal objections to Austin’s account as stemming from detractors’ failure to acknowledge: (1) that Austin never characterizes ‘I know’ as a pure performative; (2) that saying ‘I know p’, unlike simply knowing p, occurs in specific interpersonal contexts in which others rely on our knowledge claims; (3) Austin’s considered account of the felicity conditions of performative utterance; (4) Austin’s ultimate repudiation of the performative/constative distinction. I conclude that Austin’s treatment of ‘I know’ rests on a more general commitment to the intrinsically normative nature of ordinary language. (shrink)
Alice Crary has recently developed a radical reading of J. L. Austin's philosophy of language. The central contention of Crary's reading is that Austin gives convincing reasons to reject the idea that sentences have context-invariant literal meaning. While I am in sympathy with Crary about the continuing importance of Austin's work, and I think Crary's reading is deep and interesting, I do not think literal sentence meaning is one of Austin's targets, and the arguments that Crary attributes to Austin or (...) finds Austinian in spirit do not provide convincing reasons to reject literal sentence meaning. In this paper, I challenge Crary's reading of Austin and defend the idea of literal sentence meaning. (shrink)
J. L. Schellenberg’s Philosophy of Religion argues for a specific brand of sceptical religion that takes ‘Ultimism’ – the proposition that there is a metaphysically, axiologically, and soteriologically ultimate reality – to be the object to which the sceptical religionist should assent. In this article I shall argue that Ietsism – the proposition that there is merely something transcendental worth committing ourselves to religiously – is a preferable object of assent. This is for two primary reasons. First, Ietsism is far (...) more modest than Ultimism; Ietsism, in fact, is open to the truth of Ultimism, while the converse does not hold. Second, Ietsism can fulfil the same criteria that compel Schellenberg to argue for Ultimism. (shrink)
In Heidegger’s Being and Time certain concepts are discussed which are central to the ontological constitution of Dasein. This paper demonstrates the interesting manner in which some of these concepts can be used in a reading of T.S. Eliot’s The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. A comparative analysis is performed, explicating the relevant Heideggerian terms and then relating them to Eliot’s poem. In this way strong parallels are revealed between the two men’s respective thoughts and distinct modernist sensibilities. Prufrock, (...) the protagonist of the poem, and the world he inhabits illustrate poetically concepts such as authenticity, inauthenticity, the ‘they’, idle talk and angst, which Heidegger develops in Being and Time. (shrink)
This paper is a detailed examination of some parts of J. P. Moreland's book on "the argument from consciousness". (There is a companion article that discusses the parts of the book not taken up in this critical notice.).
La metafísica después de ser ignorada por años ha regresado al centro de la escena en la filosofía contemporánea. Tomás de Aquino ha vivido una historia muy parecida, lo que dio nacimiento al tomismo analítico. A pesar de los trabajos desarrollados en esta línea de investigación, la metafísica del Aquinate ha sido fuertemente ignorada. Sin embargo, la metafísica de Tomás de Aquino tiene una ventaja, poco discutida entre los tomistas y tomasinos, y es la de ser una metafísica esencialista. Así, (...) en armonía con el trabajo del metafísico E. J. Lowe, quien presenta su metafísica como “esencialista seria”, se quiere mostrar que la metafísica del Aquinate tiene las mismas virtudes del “esencialismo serio”, lo que permite postularla como una posición válida y plausible para la metafísica contemporánea. (shrink)
In his new book, "The Romantic Conception of Life: Science and Philosophy in the Age of Goethe," Robert J. Richards argues that Charles Darwin's true evolutionary roots lie in the German Romantic biology that flourished around the beginning of the nineteenth century. It is argued that Richards is quite wrong in this claim and that Darwin's roots are in the British society within which he was born, educated, and lived.
This paper seeks to reinterpret the life and work of J. B. S. Haldane by focusing on an illuminating but largely ignored essay he published in 1927, "The Last Judgment" -- the sequel to his better known work, "Daedalus" (1924). This astonishing essay expresses a vision of the human future over the next 40,000,000 years, one that revises and updates Wellsian futurism with the long range implications of the "new biology" for human destiny. That vision served as a kind of (...) lifelong credo, one that infused and informed his diverse scientific work, political activities, and popular writing, and that gave unity and coherence to his remarkable career. (shrink)
Adam Smith and J-J Rousseau share some common ground when it comes to religion, namely that they were born into and educated in cultural contexts deeply shaped by Reformed Christianity. However, close consideration of their writings on religion reveal marked difference. This paper explores those differences and finds that Rousseau and Smith are radically at odds on this score. Smith has almost nothing to say about personal spirituality, and locates the significance of religion in its social role. Rousseau, on the (...) other hand, accords religion no social role whatever, and finds its value to be purely of a personal and spiritual nature. This difference is not without some contemporary relevance, since it highlights some of the issues surrounding the distinction between ‘religion’ and ‘spirituality’ in modern secularized societies. (shrink)
Von 1925 bis 1928 wurden im Berliner J. M. Spaeth-Verlag unter der Leitung von Hans Rosenkranz eine Reihe von Werken seinerzeit eher unbekannter, in der Retrospektive jedoch signifikanter Autoren der Zwischenkriegszeit publiziert. Der Beitrag thematisiert Rosenkranz als jungen Verleger und Bewunderer Stefan Zweigs. Er entwirft auf Grundlage der Archivüberlieferung einen neuen Blick auf die Geschichte des Unternehmens und kommentiert das damit verbundene literarische Programm: Welche wichtigen verlegerischen Projekte wurden in jener kurzen Zeit unternommen? Welche Rolle hatte Stefan Zweig für das (...) Zustandekommen einiger Titel und besonders in den letzten Wochen der Verlagsexistenz? Inwiefern lässt sich Programmgestaltung und ökonomische Entwicklung von J. M. Spaeth als paradigmatisch für jüdische Verlage in der Weimarer Republik verstehen? Dazu wird erstmals das Scheitern des Unternehmens während der „Bücherkrise“ Ende der 1920er Jahre aus den Quellen rekonstruiert. (shrink)
In the same year, 1961, Peter D. Mitchell and Robert R.J.P. Williams both put forward hypotheses for the mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation in mitochondria and photophosphorylation in chloroplasts. Mitchell's proposal was ultimately adopted and became known as the chemiosmotic theory. Both hypotheses were based on protons and differed markedly from the then prevailing chemical theory originally proposed by E.C. Slater in 1953, which by 1961 was failing to account for a number of experimental observations. Immediately following the publication of Williams (...) 's hypothesis and before his own was published, Mitchell initiated a correspondence. Examination of the letters shows the development of a dispute based on the validity of the proposals, who should have priority and particularly whether Mitchell had drawn on Williams 's work without acknowledgement. We have concluded that Mitchell's proposals were original although it is evident that prior to the correspondence Williams had considered and rejected a proposition similar to Mitchell's theory. However, a major cause of the dispute was the difference in disciplinary backgrounds of Mitchell, a microbial biochemist and Williams, a chemist. (shrink)
In contrast to many of his contemporaries, A. J. Ayer was an analytic philosopher who had sustained throughout his career some interest in developments in the work of his ‘continental’ peers. Ayer, who spoke French, held friendships with some important Parisian intellectuals, such as Camus, Bataille, Wahl and Merleau-Ponty. This paper examines the circumstances of a meeting between Ayer, Merleau-Ponty, Wahl, Ambrosino and Bataille, which took place in 1951 at some Parisian bar. The question under discussion during this meeting was (...) whether the sun existed before humans did, over which the various philosophers disagreed. This disagreement is tangled with a variety of issues, such as Ayer’s critique of Heidegger and Sartre, Ayer’s response to Merleau-Ponty’s critique of empiricism, and Bataille’s response to Sartre’s critique of his notion of ‘unknowing’, which uncannily resembles Ayer’s critique of Sartre. Amidst this tangle one finds Bataille’s statement that an ‘abyss’ separates English from French and German philosophy, the first recorded announcement of the analytic-continental divide in the twentieth century. (shrink)
This paper gives an account of the debate between F.A. Hayek and J.M. Keynes in the 1930s written for the general public. The purpose of this is twofold. First, to provide the general reader with a narrative of what happened, … More ›.
This paper explores the relationships between Christianity, Englishness, and ideas about the southern English landscape in the writings of the 1930s and 1940s rural commentator, H.J. Massingham. The paper begins by looking in general terms at the conjunction of religious and national identities in the context of national landscapes before moving on to consider in more detail one particular instance of this in the writing of H.J. Massingham. Massingham's understanding of a divine natural order, his construction of a kind of (...) 'divine Englishness' and the way in which he relates this to particular English landscapes is explored. In particular, the paper investigates the natural, social and political power relationships which are embedded in Massingham's work, and suggests that his writing provides an interesting example of one way in which theological reasoning can reflect and reinforce concepts of a naturally ordered national identity. (shrink)
A. J. Ayer, who died in 1989, was acknowledged as one of Britain's most distinguished philosophers. In this memorial collection of essays leading Western philosophers reflect on Ayer's place in the history of philosophy and explore aspects of his thought and teaching. The volume also includes a posthumous essay by Ayer himself: 'A defence of empiricism'. These essays are undoubtedly a fitting tribute to a major figure, but the collection is not simply retrospective; rather it looks forward to present and (...) future developments in philosophical thought that Ayer's work has stimulated. (shrink)
Drawing upon Nel Noddings’ contention that, if children are to be happy in schools, their teachers should also be happy, this paper tries to explore a way in which the obviously intimate but seemingly conflicting connections between students’ and teachers’ happiness can be understood from the viewpoint of Stanley Cavell’s reading of J. S. Mill. Mill’s conceptions of desire and pleasure are examined as a means of liberating the above connection from existing prioritization: that is, teachers’ or students’ happiness comes (...) first. The pursuit of happiness for both teachers and students is discussed, in the hopes of illuminating alternative images of teacher education. (shrink)
Arnold J. Toynbee was not only a controversial historian, but also a beguiling internationalist. This article analyses Toynbee as an observer of international politics. In particular, it examines both his understanding of contemporary foreign politics and his constant search of a stable world order. From the idealism of his youth to the utopianism of religious origin that marked his final years, passing through his partial and temporary disenchantment with regard to his youthful expectations, this essay will follow Toynbee’s path in (...) the study of the international affairs of the Twentieth century. (shrink)
Reasoning es una obra monumental de más de mil páginas editada en estrecha colaboración por el filósofo Jonathan E. Adler y el psicólogo Lance J. Rips para esclarecer el intrincado campo de investigación relacionado con los fundamentos de la inferencia y, en general, del razonamiento humano. En la actualidad, en pocos casos va unido el trabajo de compilar y editar textos científicos con el afán enciclopédico: un proyecto editorial que sobrepasa con razón los objetivos de la mayor parte de los (...) libros editados para la recopilación de artículos en torno a un mismo tema de investigación. Reasoning supone un empeño de características enciclopédicas: ha conseguido convertirse en una referencia obligada desde que saliera a la luz en 2008 para ofrecer al lector especialista artículos científicos de las más reputadas y consolidadas voces en aquellos campos de conocimiento presentes ya en los proyectos enciclopédicos europeos del siglo de las luces, a saber: el significado del racionalismo, los límites imputables a la naturaleza del conocimiento humano, las paradojas presentes en la inducción, etc. (shrink)
This is a response to Wesley J. Wildman’s “Behind, Between, and Beyond Anthropomorphic Models of Ultimate Reality.” While I agree with much of what Wildman writes, I raise questions concerning standards for evaluating models of ultimate reality and the plausibility of ranking such models. This paper was delivered during the APA Pacific 2007 Mini-Conference on Models of God.
Artikkeli käsittelee J. V. Snellmanin (1806–81) varhaisvaiheen filosofiaa ja sen suhdetta hänen 1840-luvun alun filosofiseen pääteokseensa "Persoonallisuuden idean spekulatiivisen kehittelyn yritys" (Versuch einer speculativen Entwicklung der Idee der Persönlichkeit). Varhaisvaiheen filosofia viittaa Snellmanin julkaistuihin kirjoituksiin vuosina 1835–40 sekä luentokäsikirjoituksiin ja muihin muistiinpanoihin. -/- Artikkelin keskiössä on Snellmanin varhainen luenta G. W. F. Hegelin (1770–1831) filosofiasta. Snellmanin filosofian on yleensä katsottu seuraavan Hegelin esikuvaa uskollisesti. Tämä pitää pääasiassa paikkansa, mutta toisaalta Snellman ei missään vaiheessa uraansa epäröinyt poiketa Hegelin viitoittamalta tieltä. Hän (...) ei tosin juuri korostanut eroja itsensä ja saksalaisen esikuvansa välillä. Snellman esitti varhaisfilosofiassaan muun muassa omaperäisen tulkinnan Hegelin subjektiivisen hengen filosofiasta. Hän pyrki myös yhdistämään Hegelin kaksi logiikan pääesitystä yhdeksi kokonaisuudeksi. Snellman myös täydensi joiltain osin Hegelin systeemiä. Hegel ei esimerkiksi koskaan vastannut yksiselitteisesti kysymykseen siitä, tarvitseeko hänen systeeminsä itsenäisen johdannon. Snellman katsoi johdannon tarpeelliseksi ja esitti varhaisfilosofiassaan oman versionsa johdannosta. Snellmanin johdanto keskittyi itsetietoisuuden käsitteeseen, joka oli keskeisessä roolissa myös hänen vuonna 1841 julkaisemassaan teoksessa "Persoonallisuuden idean spekulatiivisen kehittelyn yritys". (shrink)
In this volume, leading scholars in Asian and comparative philosophy take the work of Joel J. Kupperman as a point of departure to consider new perspectives on Confucian ethics. Kupperman is one of the few eminent Western philosophers to have integrated Asian philosophical traditions into his thought, developing a character-based ethics synthesizing Western, Chinese, and Indian philosophies. With their focus on Confucian ethics, contributors respond, expand, and engage in critical dialogue with Kupperman’s views. Kupperman joins the conversation with responses and (...) comments that conclude the volume. (shrink)