_ Source: _Volume 46, Issue 3, pp 369 - 389 The article’s aim is to measure the potential of Derrida’s work for a philosophy of technique. It shows why Derrida does not present a positive philosophy of technology but rather describes technique as a _quasi_-technique, _as if_ a technique. The article inquires into the potential of such a quasi-technique for a contemporary philosophy of technology: it is suggested that it can function as a salutary “deconstruction” (...) of mainstream philosophy of technology because it shows how to think technique _in_ the absence of essence and _as_ the absence of essence.The article begins with a survey of the machines that figure in Derrida’s texts. It then examines three propositions concerning technology in Derrida’s work:Derrida thinks technology as a metaphor of _writing_ and not the other way round.Derrida thinks technique as _prosthesis_, firstly of memory, then more generally of life.Derrida’s quasi-technique relies on his peculiar conception of the incorporal _materiality_ of technique. (shrink)
La fascination pour la mesure, que représente l’évaluation quantitative dans le domaine écologique, occulte le fait que le choix des éléments à mesurer est subjectif et qu’en aucun cas la scientificité ne vient directement de l’observation de l’objet. J’en donnerai la preuve dans trois catégories qui regroupent l’ensemble du sophisme scientifique que constitue l’évaluation : le suivi d’un objet technique simple, avec l’exemple du progrès mesuré dans l’évolution du couteau et d’autres objets, l’histoire quantitative d’un fait naturel, le réchauffement (...) climatique, la chronique d’un indicateur qui est lui-même un concept, l’empreinte écologique. L’évaluation est bien un mode privilégié de connaissance de la technocratie « info-com ». Et la question environnementale a mis ce mode au centre du débat. Fondée sur la recherche obsessionnelle de la mesure, elle fait partie des instruments de connaissance qui nous enferment dans le monde techno-scientifique et participe à la fabrication de la modernité dans toute sa puissance aliénante, celle de l’hypersauvage contemporain.Quantitative assessment fascinates the researchers working in the field of environment. But it obscures the fact that the choice of what is to be measured is subjective and in no case does the scientific evaluation come directly from observation of the object. Three aspects of scientific fallacy will be described: evaluation of technological progress using the evolution of the knife and other technical artifacts; the quantitative history of a natural fact, global warming; the chronicle of an indicator which is itself a concept, the ecological footprint. Evaluation is, in fact, the preferred mode of knowledge for the « info-com » technocracy, especially in the case of environmental issues. Based on the obsessive search for measurement, quantitative evaluation locks us into the techno-scientific world and participates in the production of the ready-to-think, the knowledge of the contemporary hyper-savage. (shrink)
La genèse de la vedette de cinéma qu’effectue Walter Benjamin au chapitre 10 de L’Œuvre d’art à l’époque de sa reproductibilité technique (dernière version, 1939) trouve une résonance politique dans une note de bas de page du même chapitre où la star acquiert un statut analogue au dictateur, quand la technique (de reproduction) de l’œuvre d’art devient elle-même, à travers le cinéma, œuvre d’art. Si les démocraties bourgeoises contiennent, dans leur rapport aux médias de masse, la possibilité de (...) leur basculement dans le fascisme, c’est parce que leurs gouvernants, au même titre que l’acteur de cinéma, deviennent des marchandises, soumises à la loi de la forme équivalente (de la marchandise). L’« esthétisation de la politique » doit dès lors être comprise comme la restitution de l’« aura » et de la « valeur cultuelle » qui l’accompagne, dans et par les conditions qui par définition en constituent la liquidation, à savoir la technique, qui sont l’attribut du pouvoir. Sublimer la marchandise en la présentant sous les espèces de l’œuvre d’art quand celle-ci devient marchandise – ainsi s’institue la star –, et identifier l’homme politique à une œuvre d’art – à une star –, revient à faire de lui l’incarnation du pouvoir : un dictateur. (shrink)
In social science research, survey respondents hesitate to answer sensitive questions. This explains why traditional self-report surveys often suffer from high levels of non-response and dishonest answers. To overcome these problems, an adjusted questioning technique is necessary. This article examines one such adjusted questioning technique: the randomized response technique. However, in order to obtain reliable and valid data, respondents need to understand and trust this technique. Respondents' understanding and trust are assessed in two online variants of (...) the randomized response technique: (a) forced response and (b) unrelated question. Results show that understanding was significantly higher in the forced-response condition. Respondents' trust, however, was low in both conditions. (shrink)
We present the methodological principles underlying the scientific activities of the DHST Commission on the History and Philosophy of Computing. This volume collects refereed selected papers from the First International Conference organized by the Commission.
For Ricœur any study of Freud, or of psychoanalysis more generally, needs to take into account the crucial dimension of the analytic experience itself. Psychoanalysis, as a “mixed discourse,” aims to anticipate questions of meaning and explication alongside technical questions of energies, repression, displacement, and so on. The analytic experience is one which is practical and intersubjective, but which is also guided by various techniques or methods. These techniques, I will argue, should be understood as a type of techne, one (...) which is less concerned with hermeneutic questions of meaning than with quasi-scientific questions of force, feedback, struggle, and process. The practice of psychoanalysis, on the other hand, deals with the ways in which these forces or drives become meaningful for a particular subject, and within a singular context or history. This article will aim to draw out both the interrelationship between techniques and practical understanding, and also the productive incommensurability between the two. (shrink)
The randomized response technique is used to study the deceptive behavior of purchasing agents. We test the propositionthat purchasing agents’ perceptions of organizational expectations influence their behavior. Results indicate that perceived pressure toperform and ethical ambiguity on the part of the firm are correlated with purchasing agents’ unethical behavior, in the form of acknowledged deception of suppliers.
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)
Martin Heidegger and Jacques Ellul propounded substantivist accounts of technology which rejected the received instrumentalist view of technology according to which only the ends to which technologies are applied can be evaluated. In opposition to instrumentalism, they claimed that modern technology involves a displacement of non-technological values or (in Heidegger’s case) other ways of relating to Being. The theory of technical autonomy that Jacques Ellul sets out in The Technological Society is distinguished from Heidegger’s brand of substantivism, however, in providing (...) a non-transcendental, naturalistic account of the conditions under which technique displaces non-technical values in modern societies. I show how Ellul’s theory resolves into two components – 1) a theory of the essence of technique given in terms of the notion of efficiency and 2) a theory of the conditions for autonomy - and set out some criticisms of Ellul’s essentialism by way of an analysis of the concept of efficiency. I argue that component (2) is incompatible with his essentialism because it is committed to techniques being replicable across different contexts of use. I then use Jacques Derrida’s notions of iterability and generalised writing to develop a theory of technical replicability which accounts for the historical particularity of techniques and for their mechanism-dependent replicability. I support this account of technical iteration by showing how it allows explanatory connections to be made between specific mechanisms of technical replication and the fragile cultural forms or phenomenologies they support. I then use it to reformulate Ellul’s theory without its essentialist commitments and claim that the background assumptions of the resultant theory are sufficiently weak to render it plausible. However, while this supports certain aspects of Ellul’s original thesis, I argue that the modified theory no longer implies a hegemonic role for technique. While technical process may be self-augmenting and uncontrollable (much as Ellul describes it) there are no grounds for claiming that it prescribes a particular set of values. (shrink)
One important aspect of the nurse-patient relationship is nurses’ attitudes towards their patients. Nurses’ attitudes towards people with dementia have been studied from a wide range of approaches, but few authors have focused on the structure of these attitudes. This study aimed to identify a structure in licensed practical nurses’ attitudes towards people with dementia. Twenty-one group dwelling units for people with dementia at 11 nursing homes participated in the study. A total of 1 577 assessments of 178 patients were (...) sent out to 181 respondents and 1 237 answers were returned. The semantic differential technique was used. The scale had 57 bipolar pairs of adjectives that estimate an unknown number of dimensions of nurses’ attitudes towards an identified patient. The assessments were analysed using entropy-based measures of association combined with structural plots. The analysis revealed four dimensions, which related to licensed practical nurses’ opinions of the patients: an ethical and aesthetic dimension; an ability to understand; an ability to experience; and an ability for social interaction. The results of the study indicated that, on the positive to negative attitude continuum, the nurses’ attitudes fell at the positive to neutral end. This is an important finding owing to the personhood perspective, from which it is reasonable to assume that, with a more positive attitude to people with dementia, the prerequisites for person-centred care will improve. (shrink)
Exploring recent controversies over the role of ethics in economics, The Boundaries of Technique encourages scholars and students to discover and debate the ways in which economics is insulated from ethics, and the ways in which it is dependent upon it. Ultimately, by bringing readers to a deeper awareness of the intrinsic involvement of the individual and the responsibility of moral choice, Yuengert makes an invaluable contriubtion to the study and practice of economics.
Context: Neurophenomenology is a relatively new field, with scope for novel and informative approaches to empirical questions about what structural parallels there are between neural activity and phenomenal experience. Problem: The overall aim is to present a method for examining possible correlations of neurodynamic and phenodynamic structures within the structurally-coupled work of Alexander Technique practitioners with their pupils. Method: This paper includes the development of an enkinaesthetic explanatory framework, an overview of the salient aspects of the Alexander Technique, (...) and the presentation of an elicitation interview technique as part of a neurophenomenological method. It will propose a way of testing the hypothesis that if, in the effective practice of Alexander Technique, there is a union between the nervous systems of teacher and pupil, it should be visible neurologically and affective phenomenologically, and thus it should be possible to investigate both its neural and phenomenal signatures. Results: The proposed means of testing the hypothesis is to use the elicitation interview technique alongside neural monitoring during the teaching of the Alexander Technique in four paired sets of subjects. Constructivist content: At the heart of this paper is the claim that all activity is co-activity. I make no assumption of an ontological primacy of mental or physical, or explanatory primacy of any methodology. Implications: This has important ramifications for somatic education and therapies, for establishing frameworks of co-engagement and care in health-care situations, and for understanding empathy. (shrink)
In this paper, I deal with video data not as a transparent window on social interaction but as a situated product of video practices. This perspective invites an analysis of the practices of video-making, considering them as having a configuring impact on both on the way in which social interaction is documented and the way in which it is locally interpreted by video-makers. These situated interpretations and online analyses reflexively shape not only the record they produce but also the interactional (...) order itself as it is documented. Dealing with practices of video-making not as a resource but as a topic, I explore a particular editing practice, the use of the split-screen technique, consisting in combining various camera views within the same image. This technique is now widely used in cinema, professional settings, TV, and social research. I focus on its uses in TV talk shows and debates: through a systematic sequential analysis of the positions where split screen is introduced, I show that directors do orient to the sequential features of interaction in using this technique and that, conversely, their uses of split screen reveal their local understanding—and configuring—of what the interactional dimension of debates and interviews consist of, for all practical purposes. (shrink)
A novel "dream splicing" technique allows the objective evaluation of thematic coherence in dreams. In this study, dream reports were cut into segments and segments randomly recombined to form spliced reports. Judges then attempted to distinguish spliced reports from intact ones. Five judges correctly scored 22 spliced and intact reports 82% of the time ; 13 of the 22 reports were correctly scored by all five judges . We conclude that most dream reports contain sufficient coherence to allow judges (...) to distinguish intact from spliced reports. In contrast, abridged reports, which had all but their first and last five lines removed, were correctly identified in only 10 of 38 reports, suggesting that thematic continuity does not normally extend from the beginning to the end of dreams. The continuity identified in this minority of the reports depended on easily identifiable features, such as specific characters, objects, locations, and emotions, rather than on "latent" themes. (shrink)
While there is now general agreement that memory gives rise to both conscious and unconscious influences, there remains disagreement concerning the process architecture underlying these distinct influences. Do they arise from independent underlying systems or from systems that are interactive ? In the current paper we present a novel “inside-out” technique that can be used with the process-dissociation paradigm to arrive at more concrete conclusions concerning this central question and demonstrate this technique via a meta-analysis of currently published (...) findings. Our results suggest that the data presented in these studies vary in ways most consistent with the assumption that conscious and unconscious influences behave independently. (shrink)
I survey the syntactic technique of tiering which can be used to restrict the power of a recursion scheme. I show how various results can be obtained entirely proof theoretically without the use of a model of computation.
Student cheating and reporting of that cheating represents one form of organizational wrong-doing and subsequent whistle-blowing, in the context of an academic organization. Previous research has been hampered by a lack of information concerning the validity of survey responses estimating the incidence of organizational wrongdoing and whistle-blowing. An innovative method, the Randomized Response Technique (RRT), was used here to assess the validity of reported incidences of wrongdoing and whistle-blowing. Surprisingly, our findings show that estimates of these incidences did not (...) vary significantly when RRT questionnaire results were compared to those obtained from standard surveys. In fact, a large number of business undergraduates admitted cheating while only a small percentage reported peers'' cheating when they observed it. These results should be sobering for managers and their implications are considered in some detail. (shrink)
When a technique purports to provide information that is not available to the unaided senses, it is natural to think that the only way to validate that technique is by appealing to a theory of the processes that lead from the object of study to the raw data. In fact, scientists have a variety of strategies for validating their techniques. Those strategies can yield multiple independent arguments that support the validity of the technique. Thus, it is possible (...) to produce a robust body of data with a single technique. I illustrate and support these claims with a historical case study. *Received September 2009; revised October 2009. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of History and Philosophy of Science, 1017 Cathedral of Learning, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260; e‐mail: email@example.com. (shrink)
Here we report that a specific form of yoga can generate controlled high-frequency gamma waves. For the first time, paroxysmal gamma waves were observed in eight subjects practicing a yoga technique of breathing control called Bhramari Pranayama . To obtain new insights into the nature of the EEG during BhPr, we analyzed EEG signals using time-frequency representations , independent component analysis , and EEG tomography . We found that the PGW consists of high-frequency biphasic ripples. This unusual activity is (...) discussed in relation to previous reports on yoga and meditation. It is concluded this EEG activity is most probably non-epileptic, and that applying the same methodology to other meditation recordings might yield an improved understanding of the neurocorrelates of meditation. (shrink)
LLe terme ' évaluation ' est porteur d'une ambiguïté dès l'origine car son contenu sémantique est double : donner un prix, ou une mesure, mais aussi ' donner une valeur ' entendu d'un point de vue éthique, la valeur dont parle Weber. Or la fascination pour la mesure occulte le fait que le choix des éléments à mesurer est subjectif et qu'en aucun cas la scientificité ne vient directement de l'observation de l'objet. Cette caractéristique subjective est tout simplement ignorée dans (...) le domaine de l'évaluation des effets induits par le développement technologique. Le mode de fonctionnement de ce sophisme scientifique qu'est l'évaluation est très différent suivant la catégorie d'objets mesurés. Je vais donc dégager trois grandes catégories qui nous font passer du plus concret au plus abstrait, du plus simple au plus compliqué dans le sophisem: la description du ' progrès ' technique à parti de l'évolution d'objets simples, couteau et automobile, l'histoire quantitative d'un fait naturel, le réchauffement climatique, la chronique d'un indicateur qui est lui-même un concept, l'empreinte écologique. Chacune de ces catégories pose un problème d'interprétation spécifique. (shrink)
In the constructive theory of uniform spaces there occurs a technique of proof in which the application of a weak form of the law of excluded middle is circumvented by purely analytic means. The essence of this proof-technique is extracted and then applied in several different situations.
This article considers `critique' as performative, being on the one hand a reiterative performance, that enacts the `critic' through the act of critique, and on the other hand reflecting the constitution of the subject. While this approach takes on the conceptual framework of Judith Butler's work, it differs by refusing critique — or its correlates; parody, subversion or similar — any special status. Like any other performance critique is taken here as a cultural practice, as a Foucauldian `technique of (...) self', though the complex genealogy of such a technique lies outside the scope of this article. In order to illustrate this argument I interpret a number of Butler's prefaces, interviews and digressions which diverge from her own theoretical framework, and argue that these `fictions' arise from critical `disavowals': that is, a `self-transformative' turn against power. The subjective `crisis' that prompts critique is then elaborated by comparison to Girard's work on imitation and sacrifice. (shrink)
On croit parfois lever l'opposition entre science et technique en les réduisant l'une à l'autre. Dans d'autres cas, on souligne leur complémentarité ou leur solidarité. Ces tentatives n'aboutissent pas à une véritable unification. Celle-ci requiert en effet que soit surmontée la séparation absolue du sujet et de l'objet, d’où proviennent les autres ruptures. Mais l'identité du sujet-objet dans une raison que l'on pourrait appeler "praxique", implique une dialectique et un monisme dont la raison scientifique et la raison technique, (...) habituellement, se méfient. (shrink)
This paper argues that if one considers just a single clinical moment there may be no principled way to choose among different approaches to psychoanalytic technique. One must in addition take into account what Aristotle called the final cause of psychoanalysis, which this paper argues is freedom. However, freedom is itself an open-ended concept with many aspects that need to be explored and developed from a psychoanalytic perspective. This paper considers one analytic moment from the perspectives of the techniques (...) of Paul Gray, Hans Loewald, the contemporary Kleinians and Jacques Lacan. It argues that, if we are to evaluate these techniques, we must take into account the different conceptions of freedom they are trying to facilitate. (shrink)
The author considers the model-theoretic character of proofs and disproofs by means of attempted counterexample constructions, distinguishes this proof format from formal derivations, then contrasts two approaches to semantic tableaux proposed by Beth and Lambert-van Fraassen. It is noted that Beth's original approach has not as yet been provided with a precisely formulated rule of closure for detecting tableau sequences terminating in contradiction. To remedy this deficiency, a technique is proposed to clarify tableau operations.
Hobbes is commonly treated as a foundational figure for liberalism. This familiar view relies on emphasizing his account of the relationship between rights bearing individuals and state power. By contrast, this essay centers the practical question of how to govern, and develops this perspective to both question Hobbes's supposed liberalism and to demonstrate the utility of construing liberalism as more than a set of philosophical arguments regarding subject-state relations. In particular, understanding liberalism in terms of political technique offers a (...) new perspective on the relationship between liberalism and republicanism. (shrink)
Using the work of Jacques Ellul on technique and its development, this paper criticizes the technological risk management discourse, which claims that risks are “managed” within reasonable limits. In fact, the inevitability of technological change and the uncertainty associated with technology-induced environmental risks, some of which are still totally unknown, undermine the very possibility of democratic governance of risk. Our reliance on technique and the common belief in its infallibility make it particularly arduous to the follow the path (...) showed by Ellul. (shrink)
This essay deals with Jean-Luc Nancy’s ambivalent philosophical relationship to the phenomenological perspective on the problem of corporeity. The present analysis aims to point out how within the framework of a critical rejection of some of the fundamental elements of the phenomenological tradition, Nancy adopts some of its other elements in order to forge his own approach to corporeity. While traversing Nancy’s thinking from his critique of the Leib to his concept of technique and ecotechnics, the essay engages in (...) a critical discussion of diverse phenomenological motifs from Husserl’s, Merleau-Ponty’s and Heidegger’s oeuvre. (shrink)
In this paper, it is argued that the classical rhetorical framework undergoes a transformation because of an important change in Western thought. Following this hypothesis, I analyze a rhetorical notion of “dissuasion” as a rhetorical technique of creating a “general disposition to inaction” in addition to a classical rhetorical notion of “dissuasion” that aims at “refraining from an action”.
If you don’t feel it you can’t be taught it. Either you can play Schumann or you can’t. Successful performances of Western classical music exhibit both technical mastery and aesthetic insight. While legacies of music teachers have distilled schools of technique and stylistic performance practices, the aesthetic components of interpretation have not received systematic treatment. This may be due to inherent difficulties with teaching aesthetics: musical meaning is hard to express in words, and even demonstrating for students does not (...) guarantee their understanding. Some teachers, like Theodor Leschetizky in the above quote, believe aesthetics cannot truly be taught because it reflects a musician’s personal .. (shrink)
This article proposes that Discourse Analysis (DA) be methodologically characterized as an analytical technique for the social sciences. To do this, it must first be situated in relation to two other methodological tools used for the study of discourse: hermeneutics and Content Analysis. Subsequently, the article will define DA, focusing on one aspect in particular: its compatibility with both qualitative and quantitative research strategies. It will then examine the usefulness of this technique in the process of data construction (...) and finally propose an assessment of this issue. En este artículo nos proponemos caracterizar metodológicamente al Análisis del Discurso (AD) en tanto técnica de análisis de las ciencias sociales. Para ello, primero, lo ubicaremos en relación con otras dos herramientas metodológicas utilizadas para estudiar el discurso: la hermenéutica y el análisis de contenido. Posteriormente, haremos una caracterización del AD, centrándonos en un aspecto en particular: su compatibilidad tanto con estrategias cualitativas como con estrategias cuantitativas de investigación. Estudiaremos la utilidad de esta técnica en el proceso de construcción de los datos. Finalmente, propondremos un balance de la cuestión. (shrink)
An instantia is a technique to refute other's arguments, found in many tracts from the latter half of the twelfth century. An instantia has (or appears to have) the same form as the argument to be refuted and its falsity is more evident than that of the argument.Precursors of instantiae are among the teachings of masters active in the first half of the century. These masters produce counter-arguments against various inferential forms in order to examine their validity. But the (...) aim of producing counter-arguments change in the latter half of the century into refuting other's arguments to win in debate by any means available. Logicians of that period do not care whether the counter-arguments (instantiae) are sophistical or not, viz. the falsity of instantiae is or is not due to the flaw common to the argument to be refuted.Many instantiae they produce involve logical entanglements into which they themselves have little clear insight. Some instantiae and the attempts to explain them grows into the new theories in the “terminist texts” around 1200 A.D., when instantia literature itself disappears. Some instantiae and the issues they raise have no place in terminist texts, and sink into oblivion. (shrink)