According to familiar accounts, Rousseau held that humans are actuated by two distinct kinds of self love: amour de soi, a benign concern for one's self-preservation and well-being; and amour-propre, a malign concern to stand above other people, delighting in their despite. I argue that although amour-propre can (and often does) assume this malign form, this is not intrinsic to its character. The first and best rank among men that amour-propre directs us to claim for ourselves is that of occupying (...) 'man's estate'. This does not require, indeed it precludes, subjection of others. Amour-propre does not need suppression or circumscription if we are to live good lives; it rather requires direction to its proper end, not a delusive one. (shrink)
In the Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals' Kant is explicit, sometimes to the point of peevishness, in denying anthropology and psychology any part or place in his moral science. Recognizing that this will strike many as counterintuitive he is unrepentant: ‘We require no skill to make ourselves intelligible to the multitude once we renounce all profundity of thought’. That the doctrine to be defended is not exemplified in daily experience or even in imaginable encounters is necessitated by the very (...) nature of morality which cannot be served worse ‘… than by seeking to derive it from examples’. Thus, the project of the moral philosopher begins with the recognition that the moral realm is not mapped by anthropological data and does not get its content therefrom. Rather, moral philosophy must be ‘completely cleansed’ of everything that is appropriate to anthropology. (shrink)
In recent years the writings of Ludwig Wittgenstein have received much attention from philosophers in general and especially from philosophers interested in religion; and there is no doubt that Wittgenstein's legacy of thought is both highly suggestive and highly problematical. It seems likely, however, that the vogue which Wittgenstein now enjoys owes not a little to his peculiar place in the development of modern philosophy and, in particular, of that empiricist tradition in philosophy which stems from what has been called (...) the revolution in philosophy in the early decades of the present century. (shrink)
In his book on Karl Barth Professor T. F. Torrance spoke at one point of ‘the great watershed of modern theology’. ‘There are,’ he wrote, 1 ‘two basic issues here. On the one hand, it is the very substance of the Christian faith that is at stake, and on the other hand, it is the fundamental nature of scientific method, in its critical and methodological renunciation of prior understanding, that is at stake. This is the great watershed of modern theology: (...) either we take the one way or the other – there is no third alter native… one must go either in the direction taken by Barth or in the direction taken by Bultmann.’. (shrink)
The failure of philosophy -- A new political philosophy -- Radical democracy -- Politics of freedom -- The future of democracy -- Decentralization of power -- A Humanist approach to elections -- A new approach to political and economic problems -- Human nature and humanist practice -- Humanist politics -- Integral humanism -- The way out -- New humanism -- The principles of radical democracy.
Using mobile health research as an extended example, this article provides an overview of when the Common Rule “applies” to a variety of activities, what might be meant when one says that the Common Rule does or does not “apply,” the extent to which these different meanings of “apply” matter, and, when the Common Rule does apply, how it applies.
David Schweickart has challenged a number of claims that are central to my argument that market socialism would probably degenerate into something only nominally distinguishable from capitalism. Chief among these is the claim that competitive pressures would force the workers in a worker-controlled firm to create pay and authority differentials that would make such firms structurally homologous to capitalist firms. Schweickart challenges this on two fronts: He argues that there is no good reason to believe that market forces under market (...) socialism would create the pay and authority differentials characteristic of capitalism. He further argues that certain structural features of market socialism would insure that competition would not be as intense as it is under capitalism. Consequently, even if capitalistically structured firms were more efficient, it would not make much difference, since no sword of Damocles would hang over the heads of those firms whose workers prefer more collectivist methods of control. Let us consider each of these points in turn. (shrink)
This interview with N. Katherine Hayles, one of the foremost theorists of the posthuman, explores the concerns that led to her seminal book How We Became Posthuman, the key arguments expounded in that book, and the changes in technology and culture in the ten years since its publication. The discussion ranges across the relationships between literature and science; the trans-disciplinary project of developing a methodology appropriate to their intersection; the history of cybernetics in its cultural and political context ; the (...) changed role for psychoanalysis in the technoscientific age; and the altering forms of mediated ‘embodiment’ in the posthuman context. (shrink)
Professor Lewis and I have some important differences of opinion regarding the identity and distinctness of conscious persons, which it will be well to try to clarify on the present occasion, first of all by enumerating a number of points on which we are, I think, in agreement. Both of us believe in the existence of individual persons, each of whom can be said to live in a ‘world’ of his own intentional objectivity, a world ‘as it is for him’, (...) which differs in a considerable extent, both in content and emphasis, from the world as it is for anyone else. Both of us further believe that all these intentionally objective worlds for a large part coincide in content, and are in fact excerpted from a more comprehensive real world which is common to us all, and which, in addition to in some sense including all such intentionally objective worlds, also includes many real material objects which exist regardless of our intentionality, and which further includes our own material bodies, which appear in so central a manner in each of our intentionally objective worlds. Both of us believe in matter as a transcendent reality, as well as an intentional object, and are content to accept the dicta of science as to the most probable view of its structure. We are in fact quite Cartesian and Lockean in our belief in the primary and secondary qualities of matter. We believe further that our intentional subjectivity is geared causally into our material objectivity, and that the gearing takes place, in some inscrutable manner, in our nervous systems. We both also believe that our intentional subjectivity transcends bodily mechanisms and instrumentalities, and can be liberated from the latter, but that, when thus liberated, our subjectivity may still affect some sort of an intentionally objective material body such as we wear in dreams, a body in which it will manifest itself to itself and to others much as we do in our dreams and fantasies. (shrink)
Life, but not as we know it -- Still life in nearly present time -- Driving and the city -- Movement-space -- Afterwords -- From born to made -- Spatialities of feeling -- But malice aforethought -- Turbulent passions.
This paper challenges a recent argument of Bird’s, which involves imagining that Réné Blondlot’s belief in N-rays was true, in favour of the view that scientific progress should be understood in terms of knowledge rather than truth. By considering several variants of Bird’s thought-experiment, it shows that the semantic account of progress cannot be so easily vanquished. A key possibility is that justification is only instrumental in, and not partly constitutive of, progress.
A rational defense of the criminal law must provide a comprehensive theory of culpability. A comprehensive theory of culpability must resolve several difficult issues; in this article I will focus on only one. The general problem arises from the lack of a systematic account of relative culpability. An account of relative culpability would identify and defend a set of considerations to assess whether, why, under what circumstances, and to what extent persons who perform a criminal act with a given culpable (...) state are more or less blameworthy than persons who perform that act with a different culpable state. (shrink)