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Samuel C. Rickless [58]Samuel Charles Rickless [1]
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Samuel C. Rickless
University of California, San Diego
  1.  90
    So Close, Yet So Far: Why Solutions to the Closeness Problem for the Doctrine of Double Effect Fall Short.Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2015 - Noûs 49 (2):376-409.
    According to the classical Doctrine of Double Effect, there is a morally significant difference between intending harm and merely foreseeing harm. Versions of DDE have been defended in a variety of creative ways, but there is one difficulty, the so-called “closeness problem”, that continues to bedevil all of them. The problem is that an agent's intention can always be identified in such a fine-grained way as to eliminate an intention to harm from almost any situation, including those that have been (...)
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  2.  98
    Three Cheers for Double Effect.Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (1):125-158.
    The doctrine of double effect, together with other moral principles that appeal to the intentions of moral agents, has come under attack from many directions in recent years, as have a variety of rationales that have been given in favor of it. In this paper, our aim is to develop, defend, and provide a new theoretical rationale for a secular version of the doctrine. Following Quinn (1989), we distinguish between Harmful Direct Agency and Harmful Indirect Agency. We propose the following (...)
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  3. Moral Responsibility for Unwitting Omissions: A New Tracing View.Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2017 - In The Ethics and Law of Omissions. New York, NY, USA: pp. 106-129.
    Unwitting omissions pose a challenge for theories of moral responsibility. For commonsense morality holds many unwitting omitters morally responsible for their omissions (and for the consequences thereof), even though they appear to lack both awareness and control. For example, some people who leave dogs trapped in their cars outside on a hot day (see Sher 2009), or who forget to pick something up from the store as they promised (see Clarke 2014) seem to be blameworthy for their omissions. And yet, (...)
     
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  4. The Ethics and Law of Omissions.Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless (eds.) - 2017 - Oup Usa.
    This volume explores the principles that govern moral responsibility and legal liability for omissions. Contributors defend different views about the ground of moral responsibility, the conditions of legal liability for an omission to rescue, and the basis for accepting a " for omissions in the criminal law.
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  5.  54
    Paganism is Dead: Long Live Secularism.Samuel C. Rickless - 2019 - San Diego Law Review 56 (2):451-496.
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  6.  46
    Berkeley's Argument for Idealism.Samuel C. Rickless - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Samuel Rickless presents a new account of Berkeley's controversial argument, and suggests it is the philosopher's greatest legacy: not only is it valid, but it may well be sound.
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  7.  79
    Plato's Forms in Transition: A Reading of the Parmenides.Samuel C. Rickless - 2006 - Cambridge University Press.
    There is a mystery at the heart of Plato's Parmenides. In the first part, Parmenides criticizes what is widely regarded as Plato's mature theory of Forms, and in the second, he promises to explain how the Forms can be saved from these criticisms. Ever since the dialogue was written, scholars have struggled to determine how the two parts of the work fit together. Did Plato mean us to abandon, keep or modify the theory of Forms, on the strength of Parmenides' (...)
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  8. Locke on Active Power, Freedom, and Moral Agency.Samuel C. Rickless - 2013 - Locke Studies 13:31-52.
     
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  9. Locke on Primary and Secondary Qualities.Samuel C. Rickless - 1997 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 78 (3):297-319.
    In this paper, I argue that Book II, Chapter viii of Locke' Essay is a unified, self-consistent whole, and that the appearance of inconsistency is due largely to anachronistic misreadings and misunderstandings. The key to the distinction between primary and secondary qualities is that the former are, while the latter are not, real properties, i.e., properties that exist in bodies independently of being perceived. Once the distinction is properly understood, it becomes clear that Locke's arguments for it are simple, valid (...)
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  10.  89
    Is Locke’s Theory of Knowledge Inconsistent?Samuel C. Rickless - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (1):83-104.
  11. The Moral Status of Enabling Harm.Samuel C. Rickless - 2011 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (1):66-86.
    According to the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing, it is more difficult to justify doing harm than it is to justify allowing harm. Enabling harm consists in withdrawing an obstacle that would, if left in place, prevent a pre-existing causal sequence from leading to foreseen harm. There has been a lively debate concerning the moral status of enabling harm. According to some (e.g. McMahan, Vihvelin and Tomkow), many cases of enabling harm are morally indistinguishable from doing harm. Others (e.g. Foot, (...)
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  12. Binding Arguments and Hidden Variables.Jonathan Cohen & Samuel C. Rickless - 2007 - Analysis 67 (1):65-71.
    o (2000), 243). In particular, the idea is that binding interactions between the relevant expressions and natural lan- guage quantifiers are best explained by the hypothesis that those expressions harbor hidden but bindable variables. Recently, however, Herman Cappelen and Ernie Lepore have rejected such binding arguments for the presence of hid- den variables on the grounds that they overgeneralize — that, if sound, such arguments would establish the presence of hidden variables in all sorts of ex- pressions where it is (...)
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  13. The Contrast‐Insensitivity of Knowledge Ascriptions.Samuel C. Rickless - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (3):533-555.
  14. The Right to Privacy Unveiled.Samuel C. Rickless - 2007 - San Diego Law Review 44 (1):773-799.
    The vast majority of philosophers and legal theorists who have thought about the issue agree that there is such a thing as a moral right to privacy. However, there is little or no theoretical consensus about the nature of this right. According to reductionists, the right to privacy amounts to nothing more than a cluster of property rights and rights over the person, and therefore plays no autonomous explanatory role in moral theory (Thomson 1975, Davis 1959). Among non-reductionists, there are (...)
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  15. The Cartesian Fallacy Fallacy.Samuel C. Rickless - 2005 - Noûs 39 (2):309-336.
    In this paper, I provide what I believe to be Descartes's own solution to the problem of the Cartesian Circle. As I argue, Descartes thinks he can have certain knowledge of the premises of the Third Meditation proof of God's existence and veracity (i.e., the 3M-Proof) without presupposing God's existence. The key, as Broughton (1984) once argued, is that the premises of the 3M-Proof are knowable by the natural light. The major objection to this "natural light" gambit is that Descartes (...)
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  16.  21
    Brief for an Inclusive Anti‐Canon.Samuel C. Rickless - 2018 - Metaphilosophy 49 (1-2):167-181.
    This article describes and defends an inclusive anti-canonical approach to the study of the history of philosophy. Its proposal, based on an analysis of the nature of the history of philosophy and the value of engaging in the practice, is this: The history of philosophy is the history of rationally justified, systematic answers to philosophical questions; studying this subject is both intrinsically and instrumentally valuable; these benefits do not derive from the imposition of a canon—indeed, there should be no canon; (...)
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  17. Locke on the Freedom to Will.Samuel C. Rickless - 2000 - Locke Studies 31:43-68.
    In Book II, Chapter xxi of An essay concerning human understanding, Locke claims that a mind's will is its power 'to order the consideration of any Idea, or the forbearing to consider it; or to prefer the motion of any part of the body to its rest, and vice versa in any particular instance' (Il. xxi. 5).l To exercise this power (that is, to will), Locke says, is to perform an act of volition (or: willing), volitions being actions of the (...)
     
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  18.  95
    The Doctrine of Doing and Allowing.Samuel C. Rickless - 1997 - Philosophical Review 106 (4):555-575.
    The various proponents of the DDA differ over how it should be understood. It might be thought that the distinction between doing and allowing reduces to the distinction between action and inaction. As against this, Philippa Foot has argued that some actions, such as pulling the plug on an artificial respirator, should be treated as “allowings.” On her view, the relevant distinction is primarily one between initiating or sustaining a harmful causal sequence, and allowing or enabling a harmful causal sequence (...)
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  19.  49
    The Relevance of Intention to Criminal Wrongdoing.Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2016 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 10 (4):745-762.
    In this paper, we defend the general thesis that intentions are relevant not only to moral permissibility and impermissibility, but also to criminal wrongdoing, as well as a specific version of the Doctrine of Double Effect that we believe can help solve some challenging puzzles in the criminal law. We begin by answering some recent arguments that marginalize or eliminate the role of intentions as components of criminal wrongdoing [e.g., Alexander and Ferzan, Chiao, Walen ]. We then turn to some (...)
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  20. Plato’s Definition(s) of Sophistry.Samuel C. Rickless - 2010 - Ancient Philosophy 30 (2):289-298.
  21.  38
    Degrees of Certainty and Sensitive Knowledge: Reply to Soles.Samuel C. Rickless - 2015 - Locke Studies 15:99-108.
  22. Locke's Polemic Against Nativism.Samuel C. Rickless - 2007 - In Lex Newman (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Locke's "Essay Concerning Human Understanding". Cambridge University Press.
    In the 17th century, there was a lively debate in the intellectual circles with which Locke was familiar, revolving around the question whether the human mind is furnished with innate ideas. Although a few scholars declared that there is no good reason to believe, and good reason not to believe, in the existence of innate ideas, the vast majority took for granted that God, in his infinite goodness and wisdom, has inscribed in human minds innate principles that constitute the foundation (...)
     
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  23.  64
    Warfield's New Argument for Incompatibilism.D. K. Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2002 - Analysis 62 (2):104-107.
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  24. The Relation Between Anti-Abstractionism and Idealism in Berkeley's Metaphysics.Samuel C. Rickless - 2012 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 20 (4):723-740.
    George Berkeley maintains both anti-abstractionism (that abstract ideas are impossible) and idealism (that physical objects and their qualities are mind-dependent). Some scholars (including Atherton, Bolton, and Pappas) have argued, in different ways, that Berkeley uses anti-abstractionism as a premise in a simple argument for idealism. In this paper, I argue that the relation between anti-abstractionism and idealism in Berkeley's metaphysics is more complex than these scholars acknowledge. Berkeley distinguishes between two kinds of abstraction, singling abstraction and generalizing abstraction. He then (...)
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  25.  99
    Why and How to Fill an Unfilled Proposition.Samuel C. Rickless - 2012 - Theoria 78 (1):6-25.
    There are two major semantic theories of proper names: Semantic Descriptivism and Direct Reference. According to Semantic Descriptivism, the semantic content of a proper name N for a speaker S is identical to the semantic content of a definite description “the F” that the speaker associates with the name. According to Direct Reference, the semantic content of a proper name is identical to its referent. Semantic Descriptivism suffers from a number of drawbacks first pointed out by Donnellan (1970) and Kripke (...)
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  26. From the Good Will to the Formula of Universal Law.Samuel C. Rickless - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (3):554-577.
    In the First Section of the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, Kant argues that a good-willed person “under subjective limitations and hindrances” (G 397) is required “never to act except in such a way that [she] could also will that [her] maxim should become a universal law” (G 402).2 This requirement has come to be known as the Formula of Universal Law (FUL) version of the Categorical Imperative, an “ought” statement expressing a command of reason that “represent[s] an action (...)
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  27. Locke's 'Sensitive Knowledge': Knowledge or Assurance?Samuel C. Rickless - 2016 - Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy 7:187-224.
     
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  28.  8
    The Nature of Self-Defense.Samuel C. Rickless - 2018 - San Diego Law Review 56:339-355.
  29.  59
    Hume's Theory of Pity and Malice.Samuel C. Rickless - 2013 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 21 (2):324-344.
    (2013). Hume's Theory of Pity and Malice. British Journal for the History of Philosophy: Vol. 21, No. 2, pp. 324-344. doi: 10.1080/09608788.2012.692664.
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  30. Qualities.Samuel C. Rickless - 2018 - In Dan Kaufman (ed.), The Routledge Companion to Seventeenth Century Philosophy. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 60-86.
    One of the more interesting philosophical debates in the seventeenth century concerned the nature and explanation of qualities. In order to understand these debates, it is important to place them in their proper historical-philosophical context. This book chapter starts with theoretical background in the work of Aristotle and the atomists, and then moves on to survey various theories of motion and rest, light, color, and sound, as well as the distinction between primary and secondary qualities, as represented in the work (...)
     
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  31.  49
    Is Shepherd's Pen Mightier Than Berkeley's Word?Samuel C. Rickless - 2018 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 26 (2):317-330.
    In 1827, Lady Mary Shepherd published Essays on the Perception of an External Universe, which offers both an argument for the existence of a world of external bodies existing outside our minds and a criticism of Berkeley's argument for idealism in A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge. In this paper, I evaluate Margaret Atherton's criticisms of Shepherd's case against Berkeley, and provide reasons for thinking that, although Shepherd's particular criticisms of Berkeley do not succeed, she correctly identifies an (...)
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  32.  35
    Why Tolerate Religion?Samuel C. Rickless - 2014 - Philosophical Review 123 (2):238-241.
  33.  33
    Plato's Parmenides.Samuel C. Rickless - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    The Parmenides is, quite possibly, the most enigmatic of Plato's dialogues. The dialogue recounts an almost certainly fictitious conversation between a venerable Parmenides (the Eleatic Monist) and a youthful Socrates, followed by a dizzying array of interconnected arguments presented by Parmenides to a young and compliant interlocutor named “Aristotle” (not the philosopher, but rather a man who became one of the Thirty Tyrants after Athens' surrender to Sparta at the conclusion of the Peloponnesian War). Most commentators agree that Socrates articulates (...)
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  34.  6
    Does Locke Have an Akrasia Problem?Leonardo Moauro & Samuel C. Rickless - 2019 - Journal of Modern Philosophy 1 (1):9.
    Starting in the second edition of the Essay, Locke becomes interested in the phenomenon of akrasia, or weakness of will. As he conceives it, akrasia occurs when we will something contrary to what we acknowledge to be our greater good. This commitment represents an important shift from the first edition of the Essay, where Locke argues that the will is always determined by a judgement of our greater good. But traces of the first-edition view are present even in the second (...)
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  35.  98
    How to Solve Blum's Paradox.Dana K. Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless - 2001 - Analysis 61 (1):91-94.
  36.  30
    Hume's Distinction Between Impressions and Ideas.Samuel C. Rickless - 2018 - European Journal of Philosophy 26 (4):1222-1237.
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  37.  97
    Socrates' Moral Intellectualism.Samuel C. Rickless - 1998 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 79 (4):355-367.
  38. Will and Motivation.Samuel C. Rickless - 2013 - In Peter R. Anstey (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of British Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 393-414.
  39. Where Exactly Does Berkeley Argue for the Existence of God in the *Principles*?Samuel C. Rickless - 2013 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 30.
  40.  26
    Intuitive Probabilities and the Limitation of Moral Imagination.Arseny A. Ryazanov, Jonathan Knutzen, Samuel C. Rickless, Nicholas J. S. Christenfeld & Dana Kay Nelkin - 2018 - Cognitive Science 42 (S1):38-68.
    There is a vast literature that seeks to uncover features underlying moral judgment by eliciting reactions to hypothetical scenarios such as trolley problems. These thought experiments assume that participants accept the outcomes stipulated in the scenarios. Across seven studies, we demonstrate that intuition overrides stipulated outcomes even when participants are explicitly told that an action will result in a particular outcome. Participants instead substitute their own estimates of the probability of outcomes for stipulated outcomes, and these probability estimates in turn (...)
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  41. The Failure of Pragmatic Descriptivism.Samuel C. Rickless - manuscript
    There are two major semantic theories of proper names: Semantic Descriptivism and Direct Reference. According to Semantic Descriptivism, the semantic content of a proper name N for a speaker S is identical to the semantic content of a definite description “the F” that the speaker associates with the name. According to Direct Reference, the semantic content of a proper name is identical to its referent. As is well known, Semantic Descriptivism suffers from a number of drawbacks first pointed out by (...)
     
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  42. Marc A. Hight. Idea and Ontology: An Essay in Early Modern Metaphysics of Ideas. [REVIEW]Samuel C. Rickless - 2009 - Berkeley Studies 20:22-33.
    Marc A. Hight has given us a well-researched, well-written, analytically rigorous and thoughtprovoking book about the development of idea ontology in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. The book covers a great deal of material, some in significant depth, some not. The figures discussed include Descartes, Malebranche, Arnauld, Locke, Leibniz, Berkeley, and Hume. Some might think it a tall order for anyone to grapple with the central works of these figures on a subject as fundamental as the nature of ideas. (...)
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  43.  17
    Woollard, Fiona. Doing and Allowing Harm. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015. Pp. 256. $70.00. [REVIEW]Samuel C. Rickless - 2016 - Ethics 126 (3):862-866.
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  44.  78
    The Semantic Function of Chained Pronouns.Samuel C. Rickless - 1998 - Analysis 58 (4):297-304.
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  45.  72
    How Parmenides Saved the Theory of Forms.Samuel C. Rickless - 1998 - Philosophical Review 107 (4):501-554.
    Plato's Parmenides divides up into two main parts, the first ostensibly devoted to a series of criticisms launched by a venerable Parmenides against a theory of Forms previously articulated by a youthful Socrates, the second consisting of a virtually unbroken series of deductions to seemingly incompatible conclusions. As such, the dialogue poses a serious interpretative challenge, for it is unclear what conclusions Plato expected his readers to draw from both parts and how the conclusion of Part II is supposed to (...)
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  46. A Synthetic Approach to Legal Adjudication.Samuel C. Rickless - 2005 - San Diego Law Review 42:519-532.
    When faced with a dispute concerning how a given legal provision (whether constitutional or statutory) applies to a particular set of facts, how should a judge proceed? It is commonplace to say that, in the first instance, she should look to the meanings of the words that constitute the provision itself. If she is lucky, then the relevant meanings are clear; and if the facts are not in dispute, then the resolution is obvious. Unfortunately.
     
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  47.  35
    A Metaphysics for the Mob: The Philosophy of George Berkeley. [REVIEW]Samuel C. Rickless - 2009 - Philosophical Review 118 (2):244-247.
  48.  29
    Plato, Metaphysics and the Forms. [REVIEW]Samuel C. Rickless - 2010 - Ancient Philosophy 30 (2):428-432.
  49.  20
    Religious Arguments and the Duty of Civility.Samuel C. Rickless - 2001 - Public Affairs Quarterly 15:133-154.
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  50.  1
    A Transcendental Argument for Liberalism.Samuel C. Rickless - 2017 - San Diego Law Review 54:273-297.
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