J. S. Mill's distinction between higher and lower pleasures is often thought to conflict with his commitment to psychological and ethical hedonism: if the superiority of higher pleasures is quantitative, then the higher/lower distinction is superfluous and Mill contradicts himself; if the superiority of higher pleasures is not quantitative, then Mill's hedonism is compromised.
After describing the three main kinds of probability theories, the author presents a new logical theory of probability. Probability, for him, is a logical relation between bodies of evidence and statements. The theory is an advance over Carnap's logical theory of probability in that it is not based on a formal language with strong completeness properties. The theory is formalized in Quine's protosyntax, which has two disadvantages: first, long formulas couched in terms of a large number of defined symbols (...) disfigure the book and obscure the exposition; and secondly, it is desirable to keep our theories of inductive logic and deductive logic independent. There seems to be no reason to burden one sort of theory with the other. There is no index.--J. R. W. (shrink)
This is the second edition of a somewhat unusual account of the philosophy of Jaspers. The "Introduction" contains an historical survey of Existentialism which is rather out of date. It associates Heidegger and Sartre together, and as philosophers of the absurd--a mistake for which by now there is no excuse. It sees a "way out of this barren desert" of the philosophy of absurdity in Jaspers--which is a misleadingly religious way to introduce Jaspers. The body of the work contains chapters (...) on the foundations of Jaspers' thought in Kant, on the concept of philosophical faith, a comparison of Jaspers with some contemporaries, such as Whitehead, and a final comparison of Jaspers' "ciphers" with Maimonides' negative theology. The 79-page long text is heavily punctuated with citations and so does not make for smooth reading. This is followed by nearly half that many pages of notes, some of which are rather interesting and which provide the whole with extensive documentation.--J. D. C. (shrink)
This essay in transcendental philosophy argues for theism on the basis that God is the guarantor of meaning. In the pursuit of the logical and metaphysical foundations of theoretical thought, where thought is taken as that which stands "in intentional relation to the act or function of thinking," Young begins by dwelling overly long on the linguistic origin of "theory" in the Greek theoria as used by the Pythagoreans, Plato, and Aristotle. He then proceeds through a discussion of the (...) family resemblances among scientific and philosophical usages of "theory" to the understanding of the content of theoretical thought as meaning formed in concepts and propositions. The marks of the contents of theoretical thought are abstractness, universality, and a priority. Utilizing a distinction between cogency and validity and distinguishing among presuppositions, rules, and premisses. Young attempts to justify the belief in the existence of God on the basis of the ontological argument which he gives in various formulations. The resurrection of the ontological argument in the context of modal logic and language philosophy is an interesting exercise.--J. B. L. (shrink)
One opens this first volume of the Hong's long-awaited translation of Kierkegaard's Papirer with a sense of astonishment. For there on the first page in bold face type is the topic heading:, Abstraction. One reads further. Absurd; Action; The Ancients, The Classical; Anselm; Anthropology, Philosophy of Man-the topic headings unroll in alphabetical order. With a profound sense of the waste of it all, one gets the point: the Hongs have decided to present the Papirer in a topical not a (...) chronological ordering. Toward the end of their Preface the translators try to justify their topical presentation by noting: "Although the plan of the present English edition of selections primarily according to subject is in harmony with an emphasis by Kierkegaard, the Danish editors, and [Walter] Lowrie upon contiguity of content, the extent to which it exceeds what has been done in this direction is unabashedly in the interest of the reader." The appeal here to the authority of Kierkegaard himself and to his Danish editors is clearly misplaced. For Kierkegaard did not group his Papirer entries under topical headings—he wrote his thoughts down when they occurred to him, and collected them in notebooks in chronological order—and the Danish editors basically preserved this chronological ordering in their twenty volume edition. The chief benefit for a reader of the Danish edition is the possibility of following the evolution of Kierkegaard's thought and personality. What an irony that this new edition of the papers and journals of the arch "subjective thinker" actually makes it impossible to follow the subjective development of his thought!—J. T. (shrink)
Recent grammatical theory begins with the notion that the sentences of any natural language are generated by phrase structure rules whose base structural outputs are filled in by lexical insertion rules, the result brought to surface structure through transformational rules. Phrase structure rules rewrite particular items; transformational rules have the greater power of rearranging items. The claim that there are deep structures may be thought equivalent to the claim that the system of rules which will most economically and accurately structurally-describe (...) a language's sentences will also define a base, post-lexical and pre-transformational level. In addition Katz-Postal claimed that the deep structure level as defined above would also provide all the information needed for semantic interpretation. Obviously much will depend in all this on how one defines transformational rule. Bowers argues here that Chomsky's notion of transformational rule is an artifact of his commitment to syntactic deep structure, that it leads to inadequate, needlessly complicated and undecideable grammatical analyses; we cannot segregate phrase structural and lexical processes from purely syntactic transformational rules, and hence transformational rules state "cooccurrence relationships between sentences" rather than relating deep and surface structures. Bowers considers passivization and "causitivization," complement structure, topicalization, and some related matters. The sledding is heavy for those not familiar with these matters. There may have been a delay in publication of this book for the arguments, theories, and papers referred to belong to the late sixties-early seventies or earlier, though Bowers mentions more recent work in a prefatory paragraph: the trouble is that much of what Bowers criticizes has long since been criticized and repaired though not in Bowers's way by those in the Chomskian aegus. When he writes at a general level Bowers seems to conflate the claim that there is a syntactic deep structure with the Katz-Postal claim that this level also provides all that is needed for semantic interpretation: rationalism, nativism, deep structure, intensionality, and autonomous syntax are boated together and sink similarly. But syntax may be autonomous and largely unlearned, growing through exposure in a way sizably independent of the rest of cognition, without otherwise loading down the boat.--J.L. (shrink)
Pelikan argues, in this little book dealing with Luther's understanding of the Church, that the Reformer developed a reliance on some sort of "structure for the Spirit." The early Luther must be distinguished from the later Luther in terms of the conception of the relationship between the Holy Spirit and the institutional structures of the Church. The radical Reformer in the 1520s came announcing "the counsel I have learned under the Spirit's guidance"; but by the 1530s he was searching for (...) some sort of ecclesiastical certainty: "this is the reason why our theology is certain; it snatches us away from ourselves and places us outside ourselves." Pelikan adds still another insight to the massive literature on Luther. And his insights are usually profound. Luther is of two minds regarding institutions; on the one hand, the younger Luther can only reject those structures of the Roman Church: monasticism, the papacy. The older Luther knew from personal introspection and self-examination that those structures of the Church through which the unmerited goodness of God was communicated were means of grace. What seems to underline Pelikan's analysis of Luther is his reading of contemporary sociology of religion which makes the claim that all religious organizations develop greater and more severe institutional structures as time goes by. Weber and Troeltsch helped us with that observation a long time ago. It is good to have Pelikan do it again and to do it in connection with a thorough reading of Luther. One of the most helpful chapters in the book deals with Luther's conception of the Eucharist.--W. A. J. (shrink)
Some will wonder why this book was ever written, thinking perhaps that there is nothing more to be said about "proofs" for the existence of God. Others of a more traditional inclination might be surprised at some of the conclusions drawn by the author. Kenny carefully scrutinizes the five ways of St. Thomas and concludes that they do not constitute rational proofs for God's existence. Kenny's chief criticism is that the arguments of Aquinas are too closely wedded to a cosmology (...) that cannot stand up under a modern critique. The value of this book rests precisely in its use of contemporary philosophy in evaluating the five ways. Perhaps the author's most serious criticism is directed against the Thomistic concept of esse and the notion of God as ipsum esse subsistens. These metaphysical notions of Aquinas have long been acclaimed as extensions of Aristotelian thought. Kenny, however, claims that they are Platonic in nature and hence subject to the centuries of criticism leveled against Plato's Ideas. Under a logical analysis, the notion of God as ipsum esse subsistens "turns out to be the Platonic Idea of a predicate which is at best uninformative and at worst unintelligible."--J. J. R. (shrink)
This is an engaging book on a subject which most people in our culture assume went out of fashion long ago. The book had its genesis in one of a series of symposia convened by the Church Society for College Work of Cambridge to explore certain themes and ideas which have great import for our time. The various authors of the essays eschew the habit of viewing Transcendence as the traditional content of metaphysical arguments or revelatory statements about the (...) nature of God outside or independent of the world and seek for signs of the possibility of achieving a renewed sense of Transcendence in the domains of inner experience, history, culture, language, science, technology, and the arts. Huston Smith suggests two options of human fulfillment: psychological and ontological, both providing a kind of transcendence of self and society. He refuses to accept one and reject the other but instead to convince us that both are legitimate. M. Murphy claims that the experience of psychological and social transcendence can be fostered by educational projects such as encounter groups, gestalt therapy workshops and sensitivity training programs. In his "Manifesto for a Dionysian Theology," Sam Keen analyzes the Apollonian way of reasoning and planning which has come to dominate in Western culture and makes a plea for a reassertion of the Dionysian principle in religion which might be expressive of life as dance, centrality of feelings and sensations, a pantheistic conception of God and a theology of play. Harvey Cox asserts that our society has lost its capacity for utopian fantasy resulting in the inability to conceive of any world which is not a mere modification or extension of our own world. He suggests that we consciously become "fools for Christ" again and give full rein to our powers of creative fantasizing even at the risk of contracting "religious madness." Donald Schon urges post-modern man to give up hope for achieving a stable political order and to develop an "ethic for change" appropriate to the demands of our society where change is all-pervasive. Essays by R. Bellah and H. Richardson explore myths of transcendence as ordering structures in society and plead for increased attention to correspondences among the disciplines of theology, sociology, and psychology. E. Fackenheim and W. Kaufman seek to clarify the notion of transcendence in Judaism and Christianity respectively and to "clear the way for a positive revelation." In keeping with the shared notion that transcendent reality is present and active within the human process, two eminent process philosophers, Wieman and Hartshorne discuss the "implications for a concept of transcendence that follows from affirming the creative freedom of man." The essays singly and together reject the notion that the existence and nature of transcendent reality can be arrived at by pursuing a single line of argumentation to its bitter end and instead they work together from various points of view to reinforce our sense of man's renewed thirst for the Divine and the subsequent rediscovery of God's uninterrupted presence within the world of "Immanent Possibility."--J. B. L. (shrink)
F. H. George is Professor of Cybernetics at Brunel University in England. His book comprises eight chapters originally developed as lectures for a non-specialist audience. He points out the position of computer science among the sciences, explains its aims, procedures, and achievements to date, and speculates on its long-term implications for science in particular and society in general. Among the topics discussed are biological simulation and organ replacement, automated education, and the new philosophy of science. Each chapter concludes with (...) a brief summary. George's treatment of the technical details of his speciality is both illuminating and readable, thus serving as an excellent primer on one of the new technology's most important components. His wider forays into philosophy, economics, sociology, and religion are less happy, however; and unfortunately they take up a large part of the text. In general, they reveal that George identifies the methods of human advancement with the methods of the natural sciences in an equation whose rigidity would make even B. F. Skinner blush. Yet, the reader cannot claim that he was not forewarned; for in the introduction, D. J. Stewart, Chairman of the Rationalist Press Association, suggests that the current "swing of interest among young people away from the physical and biological sciences and towards the behavioural and social sciences... represents a symptom of disillusionment with science and technology and an attempted escape into irrationality."--J. M. V. (shrink)
The acute Reichenbach, unlike his comrade at arms, Carnap is almost always readable and often makes sense. Seven of the eight essays here collected have never previously appeared in English, although some are of first importance. The long overdue bibliography of Reichenbach's works, comprising some 195 items, is a bonus offering at the end of the book.--J. L.
One of the scandals of Anglo-American philosophical scholarship is its neglect of the German Idealist tradition. Even in the case of Hegel himself, many important works are either untranslated or have received only inadequate or outdated renderings and suffer from a lack of first-rate, full-length commentaries. The situation is much worse, when one turns to Schelling and Fichte. Lachs and Heath have rendered a real service in providing us with a new translation, available in a well-bound papercover edition, of Fichte's (...) major work, the Wissenschaftslehre of 1794, to supplant the very objectionable Kroeger translation which is, in any case, long since out of print. This is an essential work for comprehending the development of European philosophy in the short but extraordinarily productive period from 1781 to 1807. Along with Schelling's System des transzendentalen Idealismus, Fichte's Wissenschaftslehre constitutes the bridge between Kant's three Critique's and Hegel's Phenomenology. Both of the famous "Introductions" are translated in the current edition. Despite their torturous text, their renderings are clearer than one might expect. There is an extremely helpful introduction by Lachs (who also translated the "First Introduction of 1797," a German-English glossary, and a detailed index. The translators also supply the standard marginal pagination from the Gesamtausgabe of 1834-1846. In all, the work is professionally done, a permanent and much needed contribution of the study of Fichte for English-reading students.--J. D. C. (shrink)
In Being and Time and What is Metaphysics? Heidegger made a revolutionary use of the "mood". He said that the mood, and in particular the mood of Anxiety, had ontological significance. Not only is the mood nothing merely "subjective," but it has significance for the understanding of universal being itself. Anxiety is a "moodful experience of Being," a mood in which not one thing or a few things, but the very Being of beings itself, is illuminated and brought into view (...) for "Dasein." In a 1960 review of the third edition of Otto Bollnow's Das Wesen der Stimmungen, Otto Poeggeler reprimanded Bollnow for misunderstanding the genuinely ontological character of Heidegger's investigation, and thus for having reduced it to something anthropological; at the same time Poeggeler called for a recognition of the important place that such an ontological analysis has in the Western tradition. In 1958 Karl Rahner had suggested that the ontological analysis of mood in Heidegger had been anticipated in Ignatius Loyola's Spiritual Exercises, in the latter's discussion of a "consolation without a preceding cause." De Mendoza's book is an attempt to confirm Poeggeler's criticism of Bollnow and to work out, expand upon, and justify Rahner's thesis. He does this in an elaborately argued work filled with careful textual analyses of the writings of both Loyola and the early Heidegger. The thesis, as De Mendoza points out, is especially provocative in view of the three years which Heidegger spent in Jesuit training, during which time he was thoroughly exposed to Ignatian spirituality. Ignatius may represent another of the long line of religious figures--Augustine, Luther, Kierkegaard--who have influenced Heidegger's thinking in Being and Time.--J. D. C. (shrink)
The present review highlights an association between autism, Alzheimer disease , and fragile X syndrome . We propose a conceptual framework involving the amyloid-beta peptide , Abeta precursor protein , and fragile X mental retardation protein based on experimental evidence. The anabolic effect of the secreted alpha form of the amyloid-beta precursor protein may contribute to the state of brain overgrowth implicated in autism and FXS. Our previous report demonstrated that higher plasma sAPPalpha levels associate with more severe symptoms of (...) autism, including aggression. This molecular effect could contribute to intellectual disability due to repression of cell-cell adhesion, promotion of dense, long, thin dendritic spines, and the potential for disorganized brain structure as a result of disrupted neurogenesis and migration. At the molecular level, APP and FMRP are linked via the metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 . Specifically, mGluR5 activation releases FMRP repression of APP mRNA translation and stimulates sAPP secretion. The relatively lower sAPPalpha level in AD may contribute to AD symptoms that significantly contrast with those of FXS and autism. Low sAPPalpha and production of insoluble Abeta would favor a degenerative process, with the brain atrophy seen in AD. Treatment with mGluR antagonists may help repress APP mRNA translation and reduce secretion of sAPP in FXS and perhaps autism. (shrink)
Strange as it may seem, this volume is the first booklength study of Jaspers in English And it is certainly very welcome and long overdue. The author studied under Jaspers in 1934-1935 at Heidelberg. After a brief biography he clarifies a number of issues which always arise and frequently obfuscate discussions of existential philosophers--such as the problems of demonstration and of clarity. Wallraff then treats in turn: philosophy and science, Jaspers' theory of society and its institutions; the existential themes (...) of freedom, communication, and ultimate situations. The following chapters concern Jaspers' metaphysical views: transcendence, cipher-reading, and the encompassing. Wallraff is thus plainly following the outline of Jaspers' thought which is provided by Jaspers' own magnum opus, Philosophy: I. World-Orientation; II. Existenz-illumination; III. Metaphysics. The treatment is always clear and sympathetic. The author avoids any sustained criticism of Jaspers; nor does he conduct any investigation of the once much discussed relationship between Jaspers and Heidegger. The author also provides his readers with a helpful bibliography of Jasper's works and their English translations.--J. D. C. (shrink)
With the publication of these two volumes the ground has now been prepared for a long awaited event, the critical edition of the works of Henry of Ghent. Henry was one of the outstanding philosophizing-theologians at the University of Paris in the second half of the thirteenth century and, during the period between the death of Thomas Aquinas in 1274 and the ascendancy of John Duns Scotus near the beginning of the fourteenth century, no other Master surpassed him in (...) terms of influence or importance. During his tenure there as Master in the theology faculty, Henry conducted fifteen Quodlibetal disputes. His written versions of these, along with his Summa of ordinary Disputed Questions, constitute his most important surviving works. And of these, his Quodlibets rank first. Henry's philosophical and theological views were highly original and drew considerable reaction from other leading Masters of the time, especially from Giles of Rome, Godfrey of Fontaines, and somewhat later, from Duns Scotus. While his personal thought cannot be reduced to that of any earlier thinker or tradition, his views were heavily influenced by Augustine, by Avicenna, and by various other Neoplatonic currents. At the same time, while he was quite familiar with the texts and thought of Aristotle, he reacted strongly against the more radical form of Aristotelianism developed by Siger of Brabant, Boethius of Dacia, and other Masters in the Arts Faculty at Paris in the 1260s and 1270s. Aquinas's incorporation of many Aristotelian positions into his own thought was also suspect in Henry's eyes. Given this background, Henry himself may be regarded as an outstanding representative of the Neo-Augustinian philosophical current which surfaced at Paris around 1270, which triumphed with the condemnation of 219 propositions by Stephen Tempier, Bishop of Paris, in 1277, and which would continue to be a dominant philosophical force until the end of the century. The need for a critical edition of his Quodlibets and his Summa has long been recognized, since the only printed versions date from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In these first two volumes of Henry's Opera omnia Macken has prepared the way for the critical edition of Henry's works and especially of his Quodlibets. Here one finds a valuable catalog, based on first-hand inspection, of the widely scattered manuscripts of Henry's works. The catalog also contains expert codicological descriptions of the contents of these manuscripts, including works whose authenticity remains doubtful. Manuscripts are also considered which contain works that treat ex professo of Henry's doctrine. This is followed by an appendix which surveys ancient references to other manuscripts allegedly containing Henry's works, which manuscripts have not yet been found. Then there is a Répertoire, not of manuscripts but of Henry's works themselves, including certainly authentic works, works of doubtful authenticity, and finally, in another short appendix, works which have been falsely ascribed to him. A third part of this survey of Henry's works is devoted to manuscripts of other writers who discuss Henry's doctrine ex professo. The two volumes conclude with all the necessary indices. One must congratulate Macken for the care, the industry, and the meticulous scholarship with which he has prepared these two volumes. Not only are they of great value to anyone interested in the manuscript tradition of Henry's works and doctrine; they also include helpful descriptions of the writings of many other medieval authors which are contained in many of these same manuscripts. They will undoubtedly be carefully combed for decades to come by other scholars interested in these same authors and manuscripts. These volumes will be indispensable for libraries of institutions making any serious claim to expertise in the history of medieval philosophical and theological thought. One can only wish Macken and his international team of collaborators every success in their next immediate task, the actual edition of Henry's most important works, his fifteen Quodlibetal Questions.--J.F.W. (shrink)
Our research on non-religion supports the proposed shift toward more interactive models of prejudice. Being nonreligious is easily hideable and, increasingly, of low salience, leading to experiences not easily understood via traditional or contemporary frameworks for studying prejudice and prejudice reduction. This context affords new opportunity to observe reverse forms of interactive prejudice, which can interfere with prejudice reduction.
Alzheimer's disease is characterized by formation of neuritic plaque primarily composed of a small filamentous protein called amyloid-beta peptide . The rate-limiting step in the production of Abeta is the processing of Abeta precursor protein by beta-site APP-cleaving enzyme . Hence, BACE1 activity plausibly plays a rate-limiting role in the generation of potentially toxic Abeta within brain and the development of AD, thereby making it an interesting drug target. A phase II trial of the promising LY2886721 inhibitor of BACE1 was (...) suspended in June 2013 by Eli Lilly and Co., due to possible liver toxicity. This outcome was apparently a surprise to the study's team, particularly since BACE1 knockout mice and mice treated with the drug did not show such liver toxicity. Lilly proposed that the problem was not due to LY2886721 anti-BACE1 activity. We offer an alternative hypothesis, whereby anti-BACE1 activity may induce apparent hepatotoxicity through inhibiting BACE1's processing of beta-galactoside alpha-2,6-sialyltransferase I . In knockout mice, paralogues, such as BACE2 or cathepsin D, could partially compensate. Furthermore, the short duration of animal studies and short lifespan of study animals could mask effects that would require several decades to accumulate in humans. Inhibition of hepatic BACE1 activity in middle-aged humans would produce effects not detectable in mice. We present a testable model to explain the off-target effects of LY2886721 and highlight more broadly that so-called off-target drug effects might actually represent off-site effects that are not necessarily off-target. Consideration of this concept in forthcoming drug design, screening, and testing programs may prevent such failures in the future. (shrink)
Precision cell signaling activities of reactive electrophilic species (RES) are arguably among the most poorly‐understood means to transmit biological messages. Latest research implicates native RES to be a chemically‐distinct subset of endogenous redox signals that influence cell decision making through non‐enzyme‐assisted modifications of specific proteins. Yet, fundamental questions remain regarding the role of RES as bona fide second messengers. Here, we lay out three sets of criteria we feel need to be met for RES to be considered as true cellular (...) signals that directly mediate information transfer by modifying “first‐responding” sensor proteins. We critically assess the available evidence and define the extent to which each criterion has been fulfilled. Finally, we offer some ideas on the future trajectories of the electrophile signaling field taking inspiration from work that has been done to understand canonical signaling mediators. (shrink)
This collection of essays is addressed to the growing number of philosophers, classicists, and intellectual historians who are interested in the development of Greek thought after Aristotle. In nine original studies, the authors explore the meaning and history of "eclecticism" in the context of ancient philosophy. The book casts fresh light on the methodology of such central figures as Cicero, Philo, Plutarch, Sextus Empiricus, and Ptolemy, and also illuminates many of the conceptual issues discussed most creatively in this period.