The essay responds to a challenge posed by Vanessa MacDonnell and examines the question of stability and change under the global model of constitutional rights. Constitutionalism offers the promise of both stability and justice, but it may seem that there will often be a tension between these values. While some have accused the global model, and in particular proportionality, of overemphasizing justice at the cost of stability, MacDonnell claims that it underemphasizes the necessity of social change. In this response, (...) I argue that in the long run the push for social change and towards justice can be realized only when there is also a certain stability, namely the stubborn democratic insistence that any state action must be reasonably justifiable to those affected by it in terms of their freedom and equality. This conviction lies at the core and will be reinforced by the endorsement of the global model of constitutional rights. (shrink)
Vanessa Carbonell argues that sacrifices of self, unlike most other sacrifices, cannot be analyzed entirely in terms of wellbeing. For this reason, Carbonell considers sacrifices of self as posing a problem for the wellbeing theory of sacrifice and for discussions about the demandingness of morality. In this paper I take issue with Carbonell’s claim that sacrifices of self cannot be captured as prudential harms. First, I explain why Carbonell considers sacrifices of self particularly problematic. In order to determine whether (...) some state of affairs is harmful for someone, it is necessary to assume a particular account of welfare. In this paper, I assume the self-fulfillment account of welfare. I introduce this theory and show that it can account for the harm of sacrifices of self. (shrink)
Abstract It would be puzzling if the morally best agents were not so good after all. Yet one prominent account of the morally best agents ascribes to them the exact motivational defect that has famously been called a “fetish.” The supposed defect is a desire to do the right thing, where this is read de dicto . If the morally best agents really are driven by this de dicto desire, and if this de dicto desire is really a fetish, then (...) the morally best agents are moral fetishists. This is puzzling. I resolve the puzzle by showing that on a proper understanding of the interaction between de dicto and de re moral motivation, it is not only not fetishistic, but quite possibly desirable, to be motivated by a de dicto desire to do the right thing. My argument relies partly on an appeal to a non-buck-passing account of moral rightness, according to which rightness is itself an additional reason-giving property over and above the right-making properties of an action. If this account of moral rightness is correct, then we would expect the morally best agents to exhibit de dicto moral motivation. However, since their de dicto desire acts in concert with de re desires, there is no reason to consider it a fetish. Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-19 DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9825-z Authors Vanessa Carbonell, Philosophy Department, University of Cincinnati, P.O. Box 210374, Cincinnati, OH 45221-0374, USA Journal Philosophical Studies Online ISSN 1573-0883 Print ISSN 0031-8116. (shrink)
VANESSA ROUSSEAU. — Quelle est selon vous l’ampleur des risques que le changement technico-scientifique fait peser sur les sociétés humaines ?JEAN-JACQUES SALOMON. — Je m’interroge depuis longtemps sur les dérives de la rationalité qui éclairent en grande partie toutes les horreurs que le XXe siècle a connues : des totalitarismes..
Eternity Lies Beneath: Autonomy and Finitude in Kierkegaard's Early Writings VANESSA RUMBLE AMONG the extant descriptions of Kierkegaard by his contemporaries, one particularly vivid portrait captures the reflections of the young theologian on a carriage ride through his beloved Deer Park: The road was so little travelled that it looked in places almost overgrown with grass. There was absolutely no dust .... On either side there were new leaves on the beech trees .... Uncle Peter [Christian Kierkegaard, SCren's eldest (...) brother] had surely said some- thing about how Danish this sort of weather was -- or even that it was Scandinavian: it was so light and so bright and so fine; there was no wilderness or heath; it was almost childlike in its purity. But the younger brother [SCren] had replied that such weather was perfectly suited to conceal the Eternal. It was a temptation -- he had said that many times -- it tempted the mind to dream and to wander. Who could keep hold of a serious thought while enjoying that smooth, billowing grass? Either one had to let one's mind billow and dream like the grass or one had to surrender to one's thoughts, but in that case all this bright, transient lushness became painful. The whole thing was a quaking bog, he had said. Of course it looked as if that green, open plain was solid ground, but the entire thing was a bog, you know. It quaked and quaked, and Eternity lay beneath. He couldn't imagine how his brother could want.. (shrink)
VANESSA ROUSSEAU. — Pouvez-vous, dans un premier temps, nous parler de l’origine de votre ouvrage L’utérus artificiel ?HENRI ATLAN. — Il est venu tout naturellement à la suite de mes dix-sept ans d’activités au sein du Comité national d’éthique où nous avons été sans arrêt sollicités par..
VANESSA ROUSSEAU. — Pouvez-vous, dans un premier temps, nous parler de l’origine de votre ouvrage L’utérus artificiel?HENRI ATLAN. — Il est venu tout naturellement à la suite de mes dix-sept ans d’activités au sein du Comité national d’éthique où nous avons été sans arrêt sollicités par...
The Enlightenment saw a critical engagement with the ancient idea that music carries certain powers - it heals and pacifies, civilizes and educates. Yet this interest in musical utility seems to conflict with larger notions of aesthetic autonomy that emerged at the same time. In Enlightenment Orpheus, Vanessa Agnew examines this apparent conflict, and provocatively questions the notion of an aesthetic-philosophical break between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Liberalism is a critically important topic in the contemporary world as liberal values and institutions are in retreat in countries where they seemed relatively secure. Lucidly written and accessible, this book offers an important yet neglected Russian aspect to the history of political liberalism. Vanessa Rampton examines Russian engagement with liberal ideas during Russia's long nineteenth century, focusing on the high point of Russian liberalism from 1900 to 1914. It was then that a self-consciously liberal movement took shape, followed (...) by the founding of the country's first liberal party in 1905. For a brief, revelatory period, some Russians - an eclectic group of academics, politicians and public figures - drew on liberal ideas of Western origin to articulate a distinctively Russian liberal philosophy, shape their country's political landscape, and were themselves partly responsible for the tragic experience of 1905. (shrink)
Holobionts are symbiotic assemblages composed by a host plus its microbiome. The status of holobionts as individuals has recently been a subject of continuous controversy, which has given rise to two main positions: on the one hand, holobiont advocates argue that holobionts are biological individuals; on the other, holobiont detractors argue that they are just mere chimeras or ecological communities, but not individuals. Both parties in the dispute develop their arguments from the framework of the philosophy of biology, in terms (...) of what it takes for a “conglomerate” to be considered an interesting individual from a biological point of view. However, the debates about holobiont individuality have important ontological implications that have remained vaguely explored from a metaphysical framework. The purpose of this paper is to cover that gap by presenting a metaphysical approach to holobionts individuality. Drawing upon a conception of natural selection that puts the focus on the transgenerational recurrence of the traits and that supports the thesis that holobionts are units of selection, we argue that holobionts bear emergent traits and exert downward powers over the entities that compose them. In this vein, we argue, a reasonable argument can be made for conceiving holobionts as emergent biological individuals. (shrink)