In the last 150 years, the ambiguous and enigmatic 81 chapters of the Tao Te Ching have been translated, interpreted and adapted into the English language more than 100 times. The Tao and its subtle philosophy is currently being actively assimilated into mainstream western culture as evidenced by the popularity and volume of Taoist works. The purpose of this study was to analyse this phenomenon. First, a database of English translations of the Tao Te Ching was established. This database documents (...) the vast number of Tao Te Ching translations in print from 1868 to the present. Second, specific chapters of selected English translations of the Tao Te Ching were compared using holistic and content analysis. The holistic methods focused on the overall semantic connotation of the selected chapters. The specific (linguistic) analysis methods entailed the use of a computerised content analysis program (hyperRESEARCH for Macintosh). Through these inquiries, a specific understanding of the cross-cultural relationship between East and West was investigated. (shrink)
Competent patients’ refusals of nursing care do not yet have the legal or ethical standing of refusals of life-sustaining medical therapies such as mechanical ventilation or blood products. The case of a woman who refused turning and incontinence management owing to pain prompted us to examine these situations. We noted several special features: lack of paradigm cases, social taboo around unmanaged incontinence, the distinction between ordinary versus extraordinary care, and the moral distress experienced by nurses. We examined this case on (...) the merits and limitations of five well-known ethical positions: pure autonomy, conscientious objection, paternalism, communitarianism, and feminism. We found each lacking and argue for a ‘negotiated reliance’ response where nurses and others tread as lightly as possible on the patient’s autonomy while negotiating a compromise, but are obligated to match the patient’s sacrifice by extending themselves beyond their usual professional practice. (shrink)
Shannon information is commonly assumed to be the wrong way in which to conceive of information in most biological contexts. Since the theory deals only in correlations between systems, the argument goes, it can apply to any and all causal interactions that affect a biological outcome. Since informational language is generally confined to only certain kinds of biological process, such as gene expression and hormone signalling, Shannon information is thought to be unable to account for this restriction. It (...) is often concluded that a richer, teleosemantic sense of information is needed. I argue against this view, and show that a coherent and sufficiently restrictive theory of biological information can be constructed with Shannon information at its core. This can be done by paying due attention some crucial distinctions: between information quantity and its fitness value, and between carrying information and having the function of doing so. From this I construct an account of how informational functions arise, and show that the “subject matter” of these functions can easily be seen as the natural information dealt with by Shannon’s theory. (shrink)
The lore is that standard information theory provides an analysis of information quantity, but not of information content. I argue this lore is incorrect, and there is an adequate informational semantics latent in standard theory. The roots of this notion of content can be traced to the secret parallel development of an information theory equivalent to Shannon’s by Turing at Bletchley Park, and it has been suggested independently in recent work by Skyrms and Bullinaria and Levy. This paper explicitly (...) articulates the semantics latent in information theory and defends it as an adequate theory of information content, or natural meaning. I argue that this theory suggests a new perspective on the classic misrepresentation worry for correlation-based semantics. (shrink)
from my first courses as an undergraduate in African American studies, I have been concerned about the dynamics by which white and Black1 people discuss race. For one, I was troubled in my undergraduate African American studies courses by the ease with which white students would insert themselves into conversations where, it seemed to me, they simply did not belong, for example, conversations concerning visions for the future of the Black community and strategies for achieving such visions. Shannon Sullivan (...) speaks of this phenomenon, accurately I believe, as “ontological expansiveness”: one central feature of privilege is a sense of entitlement to enter every room without first considering whether or not one is .. (shrink)
Plagiarism is a prevalent form of academic dishonesty in the undergraduate instructional context. Although students engage in plagiarism with some frequency, instructors often do little to help students understand the significance of plagiarism or to create assignments that reduce its likelihood. This study reports survey, coding, and TurnItIn software results from an evaluation of an instructional activity designed to help students improve their understanding of plagiarism, the consequences of plagiarizing, strategies to help them engage in ethical writing, and key citation (...) elements. Results indicate students had a greater understanding of plagiarism, increased efficacy, and fewer instances of plagiarism as determined by TurnItIn plagiarism software after exposure to an instructional activity on plagiarism. Not surprisingly, when instructors prioritize academic honesty in their classrooms, train students on how to integrate others’ works, cite sources appropriately, and use plagiarism detection software, students are less likely to plagiarize. The discussion includes suggestions for instructors to help them create a plagiarism-free environment. (shrink)
The contributors to this volume address global, regional, and local landscapes, cosmopolitan and indigenous cultures, and human and more-than-human ecology as they work to reveal place-specific tensional dynamics. This unusual book, which covers a wide-ranging array of topics, coheres into a work that will be a valuable reference for scholars of geography and the philosophy of place.