One of the reasons why Kantian contractualism has been seen as an appealing alternative to utilitarianism is that it seems to be able to avoid utilitarianism's extreme demandingness, while retaining a fully impartial moral point of view. I argue that in the current state of the world, contractualist obligations to help those in need are not significantly less demanding than utilitarian obligations. I also argue that while a plausible version of utilitarianism would be considerably less demanding if the state of (...) the world were different, a central aspect of contractualism means that it would remain exceedingly demanding in any practically realizable state of the world. (shrink)
I argue that our traditional conception of the duties imposed by human rights is unable to acknowledge the nature of many contemporary human rights violations. The traditional conception is based on a broadly deontological view according to which human rights impose primarily negative and perfect duties, and these duties are held to be specific prohibitions on certain kinds of actions . I argue that given this conception of the nature of the duties imposed by human rights, not only claims to (...) aid, but in addition, claims against many of the most serious and prevalent contemporary active harms will not count as genuine human rights claims. These harms increasingly result from extremely complex causal chains involving the behaviour of a huge number of agents, few or none of whom can be singled out as responsible for a serious harm to any specific victim. Institutional structures can have just as central a role to play in specifying and allocating responsibility for fulfilling many of the negative duties imposed by human rights as the positive duties. These structures can therefore be equally important in the realisation of both kinds of rights. Before the necessary institutional reforms have taken place, both kinds of rights are equally genuine, and ground the imperative of justice to reform existing social institutions. (shrink)
There is a long-standing debate over whether or not Hume’s moral theory should be viewed as some version of utilitarianism. Among opponents of a utilitarian reading, many contrast the subtlety and psychological plausibility of Hume’s account of morality with what they take to be utilitarianism’s failure both to capture the complexity of morality and to be suited to the nature of human beings.
This article examines the relations between methods used in both animal work and study and concepts of animal mind. By "animal work" the authors mean humans and animals working together, and by "animal study" they mean the discipline of ethology, especially the emerging area of cognitive ethology. Within these areas the wide range of conceptions of animal mind includes varying emphases on intelligence, forms of rationality and language, cognition, consciousness, and intentionality. The authors' central concern is to elucidate the vocabulary (...) and the concepts which seem necessary to establishing successful working relationships with sheepdogs and gundogs. Their argument moves toward an emphasis on the appreciation of particular intentional states and recognizes that they invariably deploy elements of a moral vocabulary in achieving creative teamwork performances with dogs and other animals. The article concludes by consid enng the relevance of accounts of work with animals for associated considerations of intentionality. (shrink)
For many people "animal rights" suggests campaigns against factory farms, vivisection or other aspects of our woeful treatment of animals. Zoopolis moves beyond this familiar terrain, focusing not on what we must stop doing to animals, but on how we can establish positive and just relationships with different types of animals.
This book offers a feminist philosophical analysis of contemporary public skepticism about women's memories of past harm. It concentrates primarily on writings associated with the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, founded in 1992 as a lobby for parents whose adult children have accused them of some abuse after a period of having not remembered it.
Essays by the late feminist philosopher Sue Campbell explore the entanglement of epistemic and ethical values in our attempts to be faithful to our pasts. Her relational conception of memory is used to confront the challenges of sharing memory and reconstituting selves even in contexts fractured by moral and political differences.
My intent is to bring a key group of critical terms associated with the emotions-bitterness, sentimentality, and emotionality-to greater feminist attention. These terms are used to characterize emoters on the basis of how we express ourselves, and they characterize us in ways that we need no longer be taken seriously. I analyze the ways in which these terms of emotional dismissal can be put to powerful political use.
This article argues that rapid eye movement (REM) dreaming is elaborative encoding for episodic memories. Elaborative encoding in REM can, at least partially, be understood through ancient art of memory (AAOM) principles: visualization, bizarre association, organization, narration, embodiment, and location. These principles render recent memories more distinctive through novel and meaningful association with emotionally salient, remote memories. The AAOM optimizes memory performance, suggesting that its principles may predict aspects of how episodic memory is configured in the brain. Integration and segregation (...) are fundamental organizing principles in the cerebral cortex. Episodic memory networks interconnect profusely within the cortex, creating omnidirectional junctions. Memories may be integrated at junctions but segregated along connecting network paths that meet at junctions. Episodic junctions may be instantiated during nonreal” because it hyperassociates several memories. During REM sleep, on the phenomenological level, this composite image is experienced as a dream scene. A dream scene may be instantiated as omnidirectional neocortical junction and retained by the hippocampus as an index. On episodic memory retrieval, an external stimulus (or an internal representation) is matched by the hippocampus against its indices. One or more indices then reference the relevant neocortical junctions from which episodic memories can be retrieved. Episodic junctions reach a processing (rather than conscious) level during normal wake to enable retrieval. If this hypothesis is correct, the stuff of dreams is the stuff of memory. (shrink)
Academic integrity is a complex problem that challenges how we view action, intentions, research, and knowledge production as human agents working with computers. This paper proposes that a productive approach to support AI is found at the nexus of behavioural ethics and a view of hybrid app-human agency. The proposal brings together AI research in behavioural ethics and Rest’s four stages of ethical decision-making which tracks the development of moral sensitivity, moral judgement, moral motivation and finally moral action combined with (...) insights taken from Actor-Network Theory. This framework, bluntly named the Academic Integrity Model, positions AI as an effect of an entangled hybrid of human-technology actors moving through distinct but related steps towards ultimately mobilising ethical learning behaviours. This model highlights the importance of developing socio-techno responsibility in students and suggests that approaches to address academic integrity performances such as contract cheating, collusion and plagiarism should include considerations of the complex nature of app-centric students. (shrink)
The reconstructive turn in memory theory challenges us to provide an account of successful remembering that is attentive to the ways in which we use memory, both individually and socially. I investigate conceptualizations of accuracy and integrity useful to memory theorists and argue that faithful recollection is often a complex epistemological/ethical achievement.
Feminist theory is a central strand of cultural studies. This book explores the history of feminist cultural studies from the early work of Mary Wollstonecraft, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Virginia Woolf, Simone de Beauvoir, through the 1970s Women's Liberation Movement. It also provides a comprehensive introduction to the contemporary key approaches, theories and debates of feminist theory within cultural studies, offering a major re-mapping of the field. It will be an essential text for students taking courses within both cultural studies and (...) women's studies departments. (shrink)
This article is made available under Creative Commons licence CC BY-NC-ND, which permits non-commercial reproduction and distribution of the work, in any medium, provided the original work is not altered or transformed in any way, and that the work is properly cited.
Intellectual virtues are an integral part of adequate environmental virtue ethics; these virtues are distinct from moral virtues. Including intellectual virtues in environmental virtue ethics produces a more fine-grained account of the forces involved in environmental exploration, appreciation, and decision making than has been given to date. Intellectual virtues are character traits that regulate cognitive activity in support of the acquisition and application of knowledge. They are virtues because they further the human quest for knowledge and true belief; possessing these (...) traits improves us epistemically. Five intellectual virtues illustrate the nature and relevance of intellectual virtues to environmental ethics: thoroughness, temporal/structural sensitivity, flexibility, intellectual trust, and humility. While these virtues share many features of the moral virtues, there are differences between them that have practical implications and give sound reasons for considering these two types as distinct kinds. Intellectual virtues bear a structural relation to knowledge that moral virtues do not, and it is this epistemological stamp that sets them apart. Additionally, the two types of virtue can be possessed independently of one another. Ideally, intellectual virtues will combine with moral virtues such as respect, compassion, and humility to facilitate environmentally respectful behavior. The moral and intellectual virtues are thus importantly distinct and mutually reinforcing. Both should be present in a truly excellent human being, and both have a role to play in fully developed environmental virtue ethics. (shrink)
If both waking and dreaming consciousness are functional, their de-differentiation would be doubly detrimental. Differentiation between waking and dreaming is achieved through neuromodulation. During dreaming, without external sensory data and with mesolimbic dopaminergic input, hyper-cholinergic input almost totally suppresses the aminergic system. During waking, with sensory gates open, aminergic modulation inhibits cholinergic and mesocortical dopaminergic suppresses mesolimbic. These neuromodulatory systems are reciprocally interactive and self-organizing. As a consequence of neuromodulatory reciprocity, phenomenologically, the self and the world that appear during dreaming (...) differ from those that emerge during waking. As a result of self-organizing, the self and the world in both states are integrated.Some loss of self-organization would precipitate a degree of de-differentiation between waking and dreaming, resulting in a hybrid state which would be expressed heterogeneously, both neurobiologically and phenomenologically. As a consequence of progressive de-differentiation, certain identifiable psychiatric disorders may emerge. Ultimately, schizophrenia, a disorganized-fragmented self, may result. (shrink)
I argue that Sider's view does succeed in accommodating the kind of maximization he is after, according to which the agent is required to maximize overall welfare with the single exception of his own welfare. I then argue that Splawn's argument highlights some interesting and important ways in which Sider's view fail to capture basic common-sense intuitions concerning the self-other asymmetry, but offer a different diagnosis of the source of the problem.
India has a long, rich, and diverse tradition of philosophical thought, spanning some two and a half millenia and encompassing several major religious traditions. Now, in this intriguing introduction to Indian philosophy, the diversity of Indian thought is emphasized. It is structured around six schools of thought that have received classic status. Sue Hamilton explores how the traditions have attempted to understand the nature of reality in terms of inner or spiritual quest and introduces distinctively Indian concepts, such as karma (...) and rebirth. She also explains how Indian thinkers have understood issues of reality and knowledge-issues that re also an important part of the Western philosophical tradition. (shrink)