Process and Reality, Whitehead’s magnum opus, is one of the major philosophical works of the modern world, and an extensive body of secondary literature has developed around it. Yet surely no significant philosophical book has appeared in the last two centuries in nearly so deplorable a condition as has this one, with its many hundreds of errors and with over three hundred discrepancies between the American and the English editions, which appeared in different formats with divergent paginations. The work itself (...) is highly technical and far from easy to understand, and in many passages the errors in those editions were such as to compound the difficulties. The need for a corrected edition has been keenly felt for many decades. (shrink)
Purely parallel neural networks can model object recognition in brief displays – the same conditions under which illusory conjunctions have been demonstrated empirically. Correcting errors of illusory conjunction is the “tag-assignment” problem for a purely parallel processor: the problem of assigning a spatial tag to nonspatial features, feature combinations, and objects. This problem must be solved to model human object recognition over a longer time scale. Our model simulates both the parallel processes that may underlie illusory conjunctions and the serial (...) processes that may solve the tag-assignment problem in normal perception. One component of the model extracts pooled features and another provides attentional tags that correct illusory conjunctions. Our approach addresses two questions: How can objects be identified from simultaneously attended features in a parallel, distributed representation? How can the spatial selectional requirements of such an attentional process be met by a separation of pathways for spatial and nonspatial processing? Our analysis of these questions yields a neurally plausible simulation of tag assignment based on synchronizing feature processing activity in a spatial focus of attention. (shrink)
Alfred North Whitehead was a prominent English mathematician and philosopher who co-authored the highly influential Principia Mathematica with Bertrand Russell. Originally published in 1919, and first republished in 1925 as this Second Edition, An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Natural Knowledge ranks among Whitehead's most important works; forming a perspective on scientific observation that incorporated a complex view of experience, rather than prioritising the position of 'pure' sense data. Alongside companion volumes The Concept of Nature and The Principle of Relativity, (...) it created a framework for Whitehead's later metaphysical speculations. This is an important book that will be of value to anyone with an interest in the relationship between science and philosophy. (shrink)
The great three-volume Principia Mathematica is deservedly the most famous work ever written on the foundations of mathematics. Its aim is to deduce all the fundamental propositions of logic and mathematics from a small number of logical premisses and primitive ideas, and so to prove that mathematics is a development of logic. This abridged text of Volume I contains the material that is most relevant to an introductory study of logic and the philosophy of mathematics (more advanced students will wish (...) to refer to the complete edition). It contains the whole of the preliminary sections (which present the authors' justification of the philosophical standpoint adopted at the outset of their work); the whole of Part 1 (in which the logical properties of propositions, propositional functions, classes and relations are established); section 6 of Part 2 (dealing with unit classes and couples); and Appendices A and B (which give further developments of the argument on the theory of deduction and truth functions). (shrink)
Studies of animal culture have not normally included a consideration of cetaceans. However, with several long-term field studies now maturing, this situation should change. Animal culture is generally studied by either investigating transmission mechanisms experimentally, or observing patterns of behavioural variation in wild populations that cannot be explained by either genetic or environmental factors. Taking this second, ethnographic, approach, there is good evidence for cultural transmission in several cetacean species. However, only the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops) has been shown experimentally to (...) possess sophisticated social learning abilities, including vocal and motor imitation; other species have not been studied. There is observational evidence for imitation and teaching in killer whales. For cetaceans and other large, wide-ranging animals, excessive reliance on experimental data for evidence of culture is not productive; we favour the ethnographic approach. The complex and stable vocal and behavioural cultures of sympatric groups of killer whales (Orcinus orca) appear to have no parallel outside humans, and represent an independent evolution of cultural faculties. The wide movements of cetaceans, the greater variability of the marine environment over large temporal scales relative to that on land, and the stable matrilineal social groups of some species are potentially important factors in the evolution of cetacean culture. There have been suggestions of gene-culture coevolution in cetaceans, and culture may be implicated in some unusual behavioural and life-history traits of whales and dolphins. We hope to stimulate discussion and research on culture in these animals. (shrink)
'...In these pages I consider Reason in its relation to these contrasted aspects of history. Reason is the self-discipline of the originative element in history. Apart from the operations of Reason, this element is anarchic.' -From the Summary.
The first three chapters are personal history, highly picturesque and amusing, illumined by flashes of his lively humor....From here the chapters go on into Philosophy, Education, and Science. covering a span of thrity years though these writings do, they are surprizingly unified. Atlantic.
We humans have a formidable armamentarium of social display behaviours, including song-and-dance, the visual arts, and role-play. Of these, role-play is probably the crucial adaptation which makes us most different from other apes. Human childhood, a sheltered period of ‘extended irresponsibility’, allows us to develop our powers of make-believe and role-play, prerequisites for human cooperation, culture, and reflective consciousness. Social mirror theory, originating with Dilthey, Baldwin, Cooley and Mead, holds that there cannot be mirrors in the mind without mirrors in (...) society. I will present evidence from the social and behavioural sciences to argue that self-awareness depends on social mirrors and shared experiential worlds. The dependence of reflectivity on shared experience requires some reframing of the ‘hard problem’, and suggests a non-trivial answer to the zombie question. (shrink)
First published as part of the Cambridge Miscellany series in 1934, this book presents the content of two lectures delivered by Alfred North Whitehead at the University of Chicago in October 1933. The volume concerns itself chiefly with the complex relationship between nature, philosophy and science.
This paper opens with a presentation of the philosophical underpinning and rationale of the concept of physical literacy. This is followed by an articulation of the concept of physical literacy. Three subsequent sections then consider aspects of the concept in a little more detail. The first investigates the relationship of the physical literacy to the development of a sense of self and to establishing interaction with others. Here the philosophical approach is informed by writings on cognitive development and recent neurological (...) insights. The second considers the universality of the concept and looks briefly at the views of existentialists and of contemporary sociologists. The third section addresses the place of propositional knowledge in being physically literate. The implications of objectifying the body in descriptive language are weighed against the fact that verbally expressed understanding and knowledge are an integral part of Western culture. The debate presented is one of a series that has, over the last five years, mapped the author's work on developing the concept of physical literacy. The aspects chosen to be discussed here are three that have generated considerable interest and debate. In conclusion, there is a short reflection on the implications of the views discussed for education and physical education. (shrink)
Questions have been raised on what role the knowledge provided by sustainability science actually plays in the transition to sustainability and what role it may play in the future. In this paper we investigate different approaches to sustainability transformation of food systems by analyzing the rationale behind transformative acts-the ground that the direct agents of change act upon- and how the type of rationale is connected to the role of research and how the agents of change are involved. To do (...) this we employ Max Weber’s distinction between instrumental rationality and value-rationality in social action. In particular, we compare two different approaches to the role of research in sustainability transformation: (1) Performance-based approaches that measure performance and set up sustainability indicator targets and benchmarks to motivate the agents in the food system to change; (2) Values-based approaches that aim at communicating and mediating sustainability values to enable coordinated and cooperative action to transform the food system. We identify their respective strengths and weaknesses based on a cross-case analysis of four cases, and propose that the two approaches, like Weber’s two types of rationality, are complementary-because they are based on complementary observer stances—and that an optimal in-between approach therefore cannot be found. However, there are options for reflexive learning by observing one perspective-and its possible blind spots-from the vantage point of the other, so we suggest that new strategies for sustainability transformation can be found based on reflexive rationality as a third and distinct type of rationality. (shrink)
Why does the air-target and its associated practices matter? This special section is about the politics, practices and ethics surrounding the target and efforts to subvert or circumvent them. Since Eyal Weizman’s groundbreaking essay on the ‘politics of verticality’ in 2002, there have been numerous attempts to critically open up the aerial gaze, but rarely have they come together for sustained analysis and critique, to explore the implications of the air-target’s techniques, processes, visual cultures and aesthetics for politics and life (...) itself. This special section brings together leading international experts in order to open out a fuller and more complete analysis of the kinds of tensions of verticality that lie at the heart of today’s warfare, security and politics. This introduction outlines three dominant problematics of the air-target, which the articles in the section will go on to explore in more detail. (shrink)
The thrust of the argument presented in this paper is that phenomenological ontology survives the criticism of “correlationism” as advanced by speculative realism, a movement that has evolved in continental philosophy over the past decade. Correlationism is the position, allegedly occupied by phenomenology, that presupposes the ontological primacy of the human subject. Phenomenology survives this criticism not because the criticism misses its mark, but because phenomenology occupies a position that is broader than that of correlationism. With its critique of correlationism, (...) speculative realism rightly identifies a battle that no longer needs to be fought: the battle against 19th century brands of mechanical realism. Free from the impatient and defensive posturing against the mechanization of the human, phenomenology is also free to explore the world beyond its emphasis on human experience. Doing so requires a return to Husserl's discussion of hylé and the “twofold bed” of phenomenology. Phenomenology may emphasize hylé – that is, material; or it may emphasize nous – the world as it appears to or is transformed by consciousness. By returning to Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception, a case is made for hyletic phenomenology. Hyletic phenomenology allows for ontological reversibility and recognizes the “unhuman” elements in things. It is hyletic phenomenology that grounds phenomenological ontology after the critique of correlationism has been assessed. (shrink)
Culture not only influences human psychology and perceptions of self, others and reality, it also, in certain contexts, influences the quality and degree of consciousness itself. If the brain gives shape to consciousness, then we would expect culture to have a corresponding impact on the functional anatomy and microstructure of the brain. The concept of 'collective representations', as developed by Durkheim, refers to the often crucial components of human life that have meaningful existence only because we agree that they do-- (...) such as customs, money, religion, cosmology, language, games, laws, power structures and artistic genres. We present recent imaging research which illuminates the feedback relationship between these two types of representation-- the collective and the cortical-- and which demonstrates that collective representations can have well-defined cortical representations. (shrink)
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