This article discusses how the concept of a fair finite lottery can best be extended to denumerably infinite lotteries. Techniques and ideas from non-standard analysis are brought to bear on the problem.
This collection of essays analyzes relations of social inequality that appear to be logical extensions of a "natural order," and in the process demonstrates that a revitalized feminist anthropology of the 1990s has much to offer the field of feminist theory. Fashioned as a response to the lack of cultural analysis in feminist scholarship, the contributors question the category of gender within the inclusive context of the structural dynamics of inequality. They also examine how cultural identities, domains and institutions affect (...) our perception of gender in society. The first selection of essays addresses how ideas of family and kinship have fostered society's hierarchies and legitimized the status quo. In part two, the essays show how several dimensions of inequality are implicit in the construction of identities that are based upon ideas of social solidarity. Contributors: Susan McKinnon, University of Virginia; Kath Weston, Arizona State West; Rayna Rapp, New School for Social Research; Janet Dolgin, Hofstra University; Harriet Whitehead, Duke University; Carol Delaney, Stanford University; Brackette Williams, University of Arizona; Sylvia Yanagisako, Stanford University; Phyllis Chock, Catholic University; Sherry Ortner, University of Michigan; Anna Tsing, University of California, Santa Cruz. (shrink)
I respond to H. M. Collins's claim (1985, 1990, 1993) that experimental inquiry cannot be objective because the only criterium experimentalists have for determining whether a technique is "working" is the production of "correct" (i.e., the expected) data. Collins claims that the "experimenters' regress," the name he gives to this data-technique circle, cannot be broken using the resources of experiment alone. I argue that the data-technique circle, can be broken even though any interpretation of the raw data produced by techniques (...) is theory-dependent. However, it is possible to break this circle by eliminating dependence on even those theoretical presuppositions that are shared by an entire scientific community through the use of multiple independently theory-dependent techniques to produce robust bodies of data. Moreover, I argue, that it is the production of robust bodies of data that convinces experimentalists of the objectivity of their data interpretations. (shrink)
Social theory is developing in response to the coronavirus crisis. Fundamental questions about social justice in the relationship of individuals to society are raised by Delanty in his review of political philosophy, including Agamben, Foucault and Žižek. However, the focus on the libertarian critique of authoritarianism is not enough. The social democratic critique of neoliberalism lies at the centre of the contesting responses to the COVID crisis. A social democratic perspective on public health, democracy and state action is contrasted with (...) the anti-statists of left and right. This is addressed in debates on the relationship between science and governance, the place of crisis in theories of change and the conceptualisation of alternative forms of social formation. The crisis initiated by the pandemic, cascading through society, from health to economy, to polity and into violence, includes a contestation between social democratic and neoliberal visions of alternative forms of society. (shrink)
In this paper, we review the literature on moderators and mediators in the corporate sustainability –corporate financial performance relationship. We provide some clarity on what has been learned so far by taking a contingency perspective on this much-researched relationship. Overall, we find that this research has made some progress in the past. However, we also find this research stream to be characterized by three major shortcomings, namely low degree of novelty, missing investment in theory building, and a lack of research (...) design and measurement options. To address these shortcomings, we suggest avenues for future research. Beyond that we also argue for a stronger emphasis on the strategic perspective of CS. In particular, we propose future research to take a step back and aim for an integration of the CS–CFP relationship into the strategic management literature. (shrink)
Rasmussen (1993) argues that, because electron microscopists did not use robustness and would not have been warranted in using it as a criterion for the reality or the artifactuality of mesosomes, the bacterial mesosome serves as a test case for robustness that it fails. I respond by arguing that a more complete reading of the research literature on the mesosome shows that ultimately the more robust body of data did not support the mesosome and that electron microscopists used and were (...) warranted in using robustness as a criterion for the artifactuality of mesosomes. (shrink)
This essay argues that ideals of cooperation or adversariality in argumentation are not equally attainable for women. Women in argumentation contexts face oppressive limitations undermining argument success because their authority is undermined by gendered norms of politeness. Women endorsing or, alternatively, transgressing feminine norms of politeness typically defend their authority in argumentation contexts. And yet, defending authority renders it less legitimate. My argument focuses on women in philosophy but bears the implication that other masculine dis- course contexts present similar double (...) binds that urge social and political change. (shrink)
It has long been thought that the ancient Greeks did not take mechanics seriously as part of the workings of nature, and that therefore their natural philosophy was both primitive and marginal. In this book Sylvia Berryman challenges that assumption, arguing that the idea that the world works 'like a machine' can be found in ancient Greek thought, predating the early modern philosophy with which it is most closely associated. Her discussion ranges over topics including balancing and equilibrium, lifting (...) water, sphere-making and models of the heavens, and ancient Greek pneumatic theory, with detailed analysis of thinkers such as Aristotle, Archimedes, and Hero of Alexandria. Her book shows scholars of ancient Greek philosophy why it is necessary to pay attention to mechanics, and shows historians of science why the differences between ancient and modern reactions to mechanics are not as great as was generally thought. (shrink)
Neoclassical and Austrian/evolutionary economic paradigms have different implications for integrating corporate social responsibility (corporate citizenship) and competitive strategy. porter's "Five Forces" model implicitly rests on neoclassical theory of the firm and is not easily reconciled with corporate social responsibility. Resource-based models of competitive strategy do not explicitly embrace a particular economic paradigm, but to the extent their conceptualization rests on neoclassical assumptions such as imperfect factor markets and profits as rents, these models also imply a trade-off between competitive advantage and (...) corporate social responsibility. Differences in Austrian/evolutionary economic model's assumptions about equilibrium, profits, and other economic concepts allow this paradigm to embrace alternative views of strategy such as the activities or dynamic capabilities views. These alternative views of strategy focus on learning and adaptation; they align more easily with corporate social responsibility. In practice this alignment comes about because social engagement facilitates the learning and adaptation that are a source of competitive advantage. Among the many business arguments for CSR such as improved employee morale/productivity or brand differentiation, this view prioritizes innovation. (shrink)
Non-Archimedean probability functions allow us to combine regularity with perfect additivity. We discuss the philosophical motivation for a particular choice of axioms for a non-Archimedean probability theory and answer some philosophical objections that have been raised against infinitesimal probabilities in general.
A popular way to relate probabilistic information to binary rational beliefs is the Lockean Thesis, which is usually formalized in terms of thresholds. This approach seems far from satisfactory: the value of the thresholds is not well-specified and the Lottery Paradox shows that the model violates the Conjunction Principle. We argue that the Lottery Paradox is a symptom of a more fundamental and general problem, shared by all threshold-models that attempt to put an exact border on something that is intrinsically (...) vague. We propose application of the language of relative analysis—a type of non-standard analysis—to formulate a new model for rational belief, called Stratified Belief. This contextualist model seems well-suited to deal with a concept of beliefs based on probabilities ‘sufficiently close to unity’ and satisfies a moderately weakened form of the Conjunction Principle. We also propose an adaptation of the model that is able to deal with beliefs that are less firm than ‘almost certainty’. The adapted version is also of interest for the epistemicist account of vagueness. (shrink)
The purpose of this study was to examine how moral reasoning develops for 236 students enrolled in either a diversity course or a management course. These courses were compared based on the level of diversity inclusion and type of pedagogy employed in the classroom. We used causal modelling to compare the two types of courses, controlling for the effects of demographic (i.e., race, gender), curricular (i.e., previous course-related diversity learning) and pedagogical (i.e., active learning) covariates. Results showed that students enrolled (...) in the diversity course demonstrated higher levels of moral reasoning than students enrolled in the management course. In addition, results show that previous diversity courses as well as current enrolment in a diversity course contributed to moral reasoning gains. Implications are discussed. (shrink)
This article contributes to the revision of the concept of system in social theory using complexity theory. The old concept of social system is widely discredited; a new concept of social system can more adequately constitute an explanatory framework. Complexity theory offers the toolkit needed for this paradigm shift in social theory. The route taken is not via Luhmann, but rather the insights of complexity theorists in the sciences are applied to the tradition of social theory inspired by Marx, Weber, (...) and Simmel. The article contributes to the theorization of intersectionality in social theory as well as to the philosophy of social science. It addresses the challenge of theorizing the intersection of multiple complex social inequalities, exploring the various alternative approaches, before rethinking the concept of social system. It investigates and applies, for the first time, the implications of complexity theory for the analysis of multiple intersecting social inequalities. Key Words: complexity theory inequality intersectionality social theory. (shrink)
The Snow White problem is introduced to demonstrate how learning something of which one could not have learnt the opposite can change an agent’s probability assignment. This helps us to analyse the Sleeping Beauty problem, which is deconstructed as a combinatorial engine and a subjective wrapper. The combinatorial engine of the problem is analogous to Bertrand’s boxes paradox and can be solved with standard probability theory. The subjective wrapper is clarified using the Snow White problem. Sample spaces for all three (...) problems are presented. The conclusion is that subjectivity plays no irreducible role in solving the Sleeping Beauty problem and that no reference to centered worlds is required to provide the answer. (shrink)
Big Data enhances the possibilities for storing personal data extracted from social media and web search on an unprecedented scale. This paper draws on the political economy of information which explains why the online industry fails to self-regulate, resulting in increasingly insidious web-tracking technologies. Content analysis of historical blogs and request for comments on HTTP cookies published by the Internet Engineering Task Force illustrates how cookie technology was introduced in the mid-1990s, amid stark warnings about increased system vulnerabilities and deceptive (...) personal data extractions. In conclusion, online users today are left with few alternatives but to enter into unconscionable contracts about the extraction of their personal data when using the Internet for private purposes. (shrink)
This dissertation is a contribution to formal and computational philosophy. -/- In the first part, we show that by exploiting the parallels between large, yet finite lotteries on the one hand and countably infinite lotteries on the other, we gain insights in the foundations of probability theory as well as in epistemology. Case 1: Infinite lotteries. We discuss how the concept of a fair finite lottery can best be extended to denumerably infinite lotteries. The solution boils down to the introduction (...) of infinitesimal probability values, which can be achieved using non-standard analysis. Our solution can be generalized to uncountable sample spaces, giving rise to a Non-Archimedean Probability (NAP) theory. Case 2: Large but finite lotteries. We propose application of the language of relative analysis (a type of non-standard analysis) to formulate a new model for rational belief, called Stratified Belief. This contextualist model seems well-suited to deal with a concept of beliefs based on probabilities ‘sufficiently close to unity’. -/- The second part presents a case study in social epistemology. We model a group of agents who update their opinions by averaging the opinions of other agents. Our main goal is to calculate the probability for an agent to end up in an inconsistent belief state due to updating. To that end, an analytical expression is given and evaluated numerically, both exactly and using statistical sampling. The probability of ending up in an inconsistent belief state turns out to be always smaller than 2%. (shrink)
Traditional approaches to theory structure and theory change in science do not fare well when confronted with the practice of certain fields of science. We offer an account of contemporary practice in molecular biology designed to address two questions: Is theory change in this area of science gradual or saltatory? What is the relation between molecular biology and the fields of traditional biology? Our main focus is a recent episode in molecular biology, the discovery of enzymatic RNA. We argue that (...) our reconstruction of this episode shows that traditional approaches to theory structure and theory change need considerable refinement if they are to be defended as generally applicable. 1This paper emerged from discussions between us, and we are both equally responsible for its errors. We would like to thank Yvonne Paterson for helpful comments. (shrink)
Phenomenological interviews with queer women in rural Nova Scotia reveal significant forms of trauma experienced during labour and birth. Situating the accounts of participants within both phenomenological and intersectional analyses reveals harms enabled by structurally embedded heteronormative and homophobic healthcare practices and policies. Our account illustrates the breadth and depth of harm experienced and outlines how these violate core ethical principles and values in healthcare.
This article compares inference to the best explanation with Bayes’s rule in a social setting, specifically, in the context of a variant of the Hegselmann–Krause model in which agents not only update their belief states on the basis of evidence they receive directly from the world, but also take into account the belief states of their fellow agents. So far, the update rules mentioned have been studied only in an individualistic setting, and it is known that in such a setting (...) both have their strengths as well as their weaknesses. It is shown here that in a social setting, inference to the best explanation outperforms Bayes’s rule according to every desirable criterion. 1 What Is Inference to the Best Explanation?2 Judging the Rules—By Which Lights?3 From an Individualistic to a Social Perspective 3.1 The Hegselmann–Krause model 3.2 A probabilistic extension of the Hegselmann–Krause model 3.3 Simulations4 Results and Discussion5 Interpretation6 Conclusion. (shrink)
_Living Poetically_ is the first book to focus primarily on Kierkegaard's existential aesthetics as opposed to traditional aesthetic features of his writings such as the use of pseudonyms, literary techniques and figures, and literary criticism. _Living Poetically_ traces the development of the concept of the poetic in Kierkegaard's writings as that concept is worked out in an ethical-religious perspective in contrast to the aesthetics of early German romanticism and Hegelian idealism. Sylvia Walsh seeks to elucidate what it means, in (...) Kierkegaard's view, to be an authentic poet in the form of a poetic writer and to clarify his own role as a Christian poet and writer as he understood it. Walsh shows that, in spite of strong criticisms made of the poetic in some of his writings, Kierkegaard maintained a fundamentally positive understanding of the poetic as an essential ingredient in ethical and religious forms of life. Walsh thus reclaims Kierkegaard as a poetic thinker and writer from those who would interpret him as an ironic practitioner of an aestheticism devoid of and detached from the ethical-religious as well as from those who view him as rejecting the poetic and aesthetic on ethical or religious grounds. Viewing contemporary postmodern feminism and deconstruction as advocating a romantic mode of living poetically, Walsh concludes with a feminist reading of Kierkegaard that affirms both individuality and relatedness, commonalities and differences between the self and others, men and women, for the fashioning of an authentic mode of living poetically in the present age. (shrink)
Noradrenergic pathways are involved in mediating the central and peripheral effects of physiological arousal. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of noradrenergic transmission in moral decision-making. We studied the effects in healthy volunteers of propranolol (a noradrenergic beta-adrenoceptor antagonist) on moral judgement in a set of moral dilemmas pitting utilitarian outcomes (e.g., saving five lives) against highly aversive harmful actions (e.g., killing an innocent person) in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel group design. Propranolol (40 mg orally) (...) significantly reduced heart rate, but had no effect on self-reported mood. Importantly, propranolol made participants more likely to judge harmful actions as morally unacceptable, but only in dilemmas where harms were ‘up close and personal’. In addition, longer response times for such personal dilemmas were only found for the placebo group. Finally, judgments in personal dilemmas by the propranolol group were more decisive. These findings indicate that noradrenergic pathways play a role in responses to moral dilemmas, in line with recent work implicating emotion in moral decision-making. However, contrary to current theorising, these findings also suggest that aversion to harming is not driven by emotional arousal. Our findings are also of significant practical interest given that propranolol is a widely used drug in different settings, and is currently being considered as a potential treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder in military and rescue service personnel. (shrink)
Scholars across disciplines recognize sport as an institution perpetuating sexism and bias against women in light of its masculine ideals. However, little philosophical research identifies how a masculine environment impacts women’s possibilities in sport. This paper shows that socially structured masculine ideals of athletic excellence impact recognition of women’s athletic achievements while contributing to contexts endangering respect and self-respect. Exploring athletic disrespect reveals connections to more broadly harmful sport practices that include physical and sexual violence. Thus, the practical concern is (...) that sport’s masculine ideals might undermine women’s pursuit of athletic excellence in more harmful ways than previously recognized. (shrink)
This article considers the question of whether corporate entities can benefit from the criminal-law defence of duress. The excuse of duress is accorded in recognition of the defendant’s extreme fear of a threatened consequence, and it is unclear whether corporate entities—as distinct from their members—can experience fear. Many proponents of corporate rationality deny that corporations can have emotional states. I argue that corporations can experience the fear that is necessary to ground a claim of duress, but that the law should (...) only allow fear to excuse coerced corporate action in a narrow set of circumstances. (shrink)
The opposition of ‘culture’ and ‘rights’ is not uncommon in feminist legal discourse. This article argues that such an approach is fraught with danger as it creates an extremely restrictive framework within which African women can challenge domination; it limits our strategic interventions for transforming society and essentially plays into the hands of those seeking to perpetuate and solidify the existing structures of patriarchy. Drawing examples from a parallel research on Gender, Law and Sexuality, I propose that a more critical (...) and interpretative approach to these two concepts may present a different perspective to portrayals of ‘tradition’ as constraining and/or fixed often displayed in mainstream feminist legal thinking. (shrink)
Sport is recognized both in sport studies and in the social sciences as a social institution forming, reinforcing, and perpetuating male hegemony. They recognize the constraints, barriers, and harms to women arising from current gendered social structures but cannot be expected to advance philosophical implications. Yet, the latter requires attention since sport not only mirrors but appears to magnify oppressive gendered practices. This article hopes to meet that need through a feminist philosophical analysis that reveals significant barriers, frustrations, and...
Arguments in the neuroenhancement debate are sometimes based upon idealistic scenarios involving the assumption of using a drug that has no or negligible side effects. At least it is often implicitly assumed – as technology and scientific knowledge advances - that there soon will be a drug with no or negligible side effects. We will review evidence from neuroscience, complex network research and evolution theory and demonstrate that - at least in terms of psychopharmacological intervention – on the basis of (...) our understanding of brain function it seems inconceivable that there ever will be a drug that has the desired effect without undesirable side effects. We will illustrate this by reference to enhancing edge detection in V2 in monkeys and demonstrate that even for this localised single neuron coded function there would be numerous side effects. Taking the more realistic case of pharmacological enhancement that is inevitably associated with side effects will change consequentialist arguments for neuroenhancement and have implications for the conception of autonomy, specifically in the case of performance enhancement. We conclude that a neuroethics debate that aims to inform policy decisions should take these findings into account. We hope that our article will precipitate more interdisciplinary research in neuroscience and philosophy. (shrink)
How much power does emotional dismissal have over the oppressed's ability to trust outlaw emotions, or to stand for such emotions before others? I discuss Sue Campbell's view of the interpretation of emotion in light of the political significance of emotional dismissal, in response, 1 suggest that feminist contentions of interpretation developed within dialogical communities are best suited to providing resources for expressing, interpreting, defining, and reflecting on our emotions.
: How much power does emotional dismissal have over the oppressed's ability to trust outlaw emotions, or to stand for such emotions before others? I discuss Sue Campbell 's view of the interpretation of emotion in light of the political significance of emotional dismissal. In response, I suggest that feminist conventions of interpretation developed within dialogical communities are best suited to providing resources for expressing, interpreting, defining, and reflecting on our emotions.
As workers struggle to combine work and family responsibilities, discrimination against workers based on their status as caregivers is on the rise. Although both women and men feel the pinch, caregiver discrimination is particularly damaging for women, because care is intricately tied to gendered norms and expectations. In this article, we analyze caregiver discrimination cases resolved by Canadian Human Rights Tribunals from 1985 through 2016, to explore how work and caregiving clash. We identify issues involved in disputes and the ways (...) gendered expectations about work–life facilitation inform disputes and outcomes. We find that although women are more likely to bring claims and obtain favorable outcomes, the legal interpretation of claims is highly gendered. Women bring claims involving both their presumed status as caregivers and the practical challenges of seeking accommodations for care, whereas men’s claims are largely accommodation based. In adjudicating cases, Tribunals are more likely to see women than men as lacking credibility when making their claims, questioning their competence and legitimacy. In contrast, men struggle to demonstrate the legal basis of work–family interference, failing to convey how seriously work interferes with family responsibilities. (shrink)
According to the Principle of Conditional Non-Contradiction (CNC), conditionals of the form “If p, q” and “If p, not q” cannot both be true, unless p is inconsistent. This principle is widely regarded as an adequacy constraint on any semantics that attributes truth conditions to conditionals. Gibbard has presented an example of a pair of conditionals that, in the context he describes, appear to violate CNC. He concluded from this that conditionals lack truth conditions. We argue that this conclusion is (...) rash by proposing a new diagnosis of what is going on in Gibbard’s argument. We also provide empirical evidence in support of our proposal. (shrink)
Cancer treatment decisions should be based on all available evidence. But this evidence is complex and varied: it includes not only the patient’s symptoms and expert knowledge of the relevant causal processes, but also clinical databases relating to past patients, databases of observations made at the molecular level, and evidence encapsulated in scientiﬁc papers and medical informatics systems. Objective Bayesian nets oﬀer a principled path to knowledge integration, and we show in this chapter how they can be applied to integrate (...) various kinds of evidence in the cancer domain. This is important from the systems biology perspective, which needs to integrate data that concern diﬀerent levels of analysis, and is also important from the point of view of medical informatics. (shrink)
By exploiting the parallels between large, yet finite lotteries on the one hand and countably infinite lotteries on the other, we gain insights in the foundations of probability theory as well as in epistemology. We solve the 'adding problems' that occur in these two contexts using a similar strategy, based on non-standard analysis.
The emergence of new forms of reproductive technology raise an increasingly complex array of social and ethical issues. Nevertheless, this paper focuses on commonplace reproductive technologies used during labor and birth such as ultrasound, fetal monitoring, episiotomy, epidurals, labor induction, amniotomy, and cesarean section. This paper maintains that social pressures increase women’s perceived need to such reproductive technologies and thus undermine women’s capacity to choose an elective cesarean or avoid an emergency cesarean. Routine, normalized use of technology interferes with the (...) possibility of choosing use of technology where best suited through misdirecting laboring women to use technological resources whenever possible. This normalized use of technology decreases risk tolerance and increases dependence on technology for reassurance, which bears significant implications for self-trust and self-confidence. My account encourages women’s cultivation of autonomy as a capacity interconnected with our own attitudes and those of other persons; and as a function of cultivating trust and confidence in one’s body. (shrink)
When Russell was fifteen, he was given a copy of W.K. Clifford’s The Common Sense of the Exact Sciences . Russell later recalled reading it immediately “with passionate interest and with an intoxicating delight in intellectual clarification”. Why then, when Russell wrote An Essay on the Foundations of Geometry , did he choose to defend spaces of homogeneous curvature as a priori? Why was he almost completely silent thereafter on the subject of Clifford, and his writings on geometry and space? (...) We suggest that Russell may have avoided Clifford’s hypothesis that space had heterogeneous curvature because it seemed impossible to reconcile a coherent theory of measurement with a space of variable curvature. Whitehead objected to Einstein’s general theory of relativity on this basis, formulating an alternate theory that preserved the constant curvature of space and, therefore, a familiar sense of measurement. After Einstein’s general theory, Russell chose to distance himself from the position he argued in the Essay. (shrink)
Human freedom is in tension with nomological determinism and with statistical determinism. The goal of this paper is to answer both challenges. Four contributions are made to the free-will debate. First, we propose a classification of scientific theories based on how much freedom they allow. We take into account that indeterminism comes in different degrees and that both the laws and the auxiliary conditions can place constraints. A scientific worldview pulls towards one end of this classification, while libertarianism pulls towards (...) the other end of the spectrum. Second, inspired by Hoefer, we argue that an interval of auxiliary conditions corresponds to a region in phase space, and to a bundle of possible block universes. We thus make room for a form of non-nomological indeterminism. Third, we combine crucial elements from the works of Hoefer and List; we attempt to give a libertarian reading of this combination. On our proposal, throughout spacetime, there is a certain amount of freedom that can be interpreted as the result of agential choices. Fourth, we focus on the principle of alternative possibilities throughout and propose three ways of strengthening it. (shrink)
Descartes est de manière générale peu enclin à reconnaître ce qu’il doit à ses prédécesseurs. Sa relation avec les sceptiques grecs est d’autant plus difficile à identifier qu’elle a été paradoxalement occultée par la réception sceptique de son œuvre : en dépit de l’incontestable apport néo-académicien dans la rédaction de l’argumentaire des Méditations, l’entreprise cartésienne a été interprétée comme inaugurant un scepticisme radical et inédit par lequel la rupture avec la tradition serait consommée. Pourtant, Descartes utilise le scepticisme de la (...) Nouvelle Académie, et notamment l’argument du sorite, pour critiquer la tradition philosophique dans son ensemble et donner une licence telle à son esprit qu’aucune connaissance ou même croyance ne pouvait être préservée a priori. L’incertain n’est pas pour autant totalement évincé de sa philosophie qui, en science comme en morale, hérite de la conception sceptique de la vraisemblance, telle qu’elle a été transmise par les Académiques de Cicéron. (shrink)