Introduction A brief look at the competing present-day interpretations of Hume's philosophy will leave the uninitiated reader completely baffled. On the one hand , Hume is seen as a philosopher who attempted to analyse concepts with ...
This collection by a distinguished group of philosophers, psychologists, and physiologists reflects an interdisciplinary approach to the central question of cognitive science: how do we model the mind? Among the topics explored are the relationships (theoretical, reductive, and explanatory) between philosophy, psychology, computer science, and physiology; what should be asked of models in science generally, and in cognitive science in particular; whether theoretical models must make essential reference to objects in the environment; whether there are human competences that are resistant, (...) in principle, to modelling; whether simulated thinking and intentionality are really thinking and intentionality; how semantics can be generated from syntactics; the meaning of the terms "representations" and "modelling;" whether the nature of the "hardware" matters; and whether computer models of humans are "dehumanizing." Contributors include Donald Davidson, Daniel C. Dennett, Margaret A. Boden, Adam Morton, Dennis Noble, T. Poggio, Colin Blakemore, K.V. Wilkes, P.N. Johnson-Laird, and Jonathan St. B.T. Evans. (shrink)
Broad, C. D. Leibniz's predicate-in-notion principle and some of its alleged consequences.--Couturat, L. On Leibniz's metaphysics.--Friedrich, C. J. Philosophical reflections of Leibniz on law, politics, and the state.--Curley, E. M. The root of contingency. Furth, M. Monadology.--Hacking, I. Individual substance.--Hintikka, J. Leibniz on plenitude, relations, and the "reign of law."--Ishiguro, H. Leibniz's theory of the ideality of relations.--Kneale, M. Leibniz and Spinoza on activity.--Koyré, A. Leibniz and Newton.--Lovejoy, A. O. Plenitude and sufficient reason in Leibniz and Spinoza.--Mates, B. Leibniz on (...) possible worlds.--Russell, B. Recent work on the philosophy of Leibniz.--Wilson, M. D. On Leibniz's explication of "necessary truth.". (shrink)
This book argues that science and metaphysics are closely and inseparably interwoven in the work of Descartes, such that the metaphysics cannot be understood without the science and vice versa. In order to make his case, Thomas Vinci offers a careful philosophical reconstruction of central parts of Descartes' metaphysics and of his theory of perception, each considered in relation to Descartes' epistemology. Many authors of late have written on the relation between Descartes' metaphysics and his physics, especially insofar as the (...) former was intended to justify the latter. Vinci's work does not focus on this relation. It takes as a broad interpretive principle that Descartes wanted to justify a certain picture of matter with his metaphysics, but it focuses its own efforts on the way in which metaphysics and science meet in Descartes' theory of sense-perception. Vinci aims to show that Descartes gave an important positive role to sense-perception in his epistemology, and also that he used his reflections on sense-perception to frame his criticism of previous theories of the sensory qualities of objects. (shrink)
Philosopher, theologian, educational theorist, feminist and political pamphleteer, Mary Astell was an important figure in the history of ideas of the early modern period. Among the first systematic critics of John Locke's entire corpus, she is best known for the famous question which prefaces her Reflections on Marriage: 'If all men are born free, how is it that all women are born slaves?' She is claimed by modern Republican theorists and feminists alike but, as a Royalist High Church Tory, the (...) peculiar constellation of her views sits uneasily with modern commentators. Patricia Springborg's study addresses these apparent paradoxes, recovering the historical and philosophical contexts to her thought. She shows that Astell was not alone in her views; rather, she was part of a cohort of early modern women philosophers who were important for the reception of Descartes and who grappled with the existential problems of a new age. (shrink)
'Two things', wrote Kant, 'fill the mind with ever new and increasing admiration and awe: the starry heavens above and the moral law within'. Many would argue that since Kant's day, the study of the starry heavens has advanced while ethics has stagnated, and in particular that Kant's ethics offers an empty formalism that tells us nothing about how we should live. In Acting on Principle Onora O'Neill shows that Kantian ethics has practical as well as philosophical importance. First published (...) in 1975, the book is regarded as a classic account and defence of the Kantian ethical position. It addresses Kant's account of reasoning about action, in particular his controversial claim that the Categorical Imperative guides action and is basic to ethics and justice. This second edition offers a substantial new introduction and updated bibliography, and will be valuable for a wide readership in Kant studies and those studying ethics. (shrink)
If an artist sends a live peacock to an exhibition, is it art? 'What is art?' is a question many of us want answered but are too afraid to ask. It is the very question that Nigel Warburton demystifies in this brilliant and accessible little book. With the help of varied illustrations and photographs, from Cézanne and Francis Bacon to Andy Warhol and Damien Hirst, best-selling author Warburton brings a philosopher's eye to art in a refreshing jargon-free style. With customary (...) clarity, he explains art theories, that are much discussed but little understood, by thinkers such as Clive Bell, R.G Collingwood and Wittgenstein. He illuminates other perplexing problems in art, such as the artist's intention, representation and emotion. Drawing on photographs of Cindy Sherman and Tiananmen Square, Warburton shows that, if we are ever to answer the art question, we must consider each work of art on its own terms. A stimulating and handy guide through the art maze, _The Art Question_ is essential reading for anyone interested in art, philosophy or those who simply like looking at and thinking about pictures. (shrink)
The Argument of the "Tractatus" presents a single unified interpretation of the Tractatus based on Wittgenstein's own view that the philosophy of logic is the real foundation of his philosophical system.
Robert Roth, among the first few Catholics to write favorably, even if critically, about American pragmatism, presents here a creative piece of comparative philosophy in which he achieves a long-term goal of attempting a reconciliation between pragmatism and a classical spiritual and religious perspective. The title, Radical Pragmatism, is an adaptation of William James’s "radical empiricism." James had argues that the classical empiricists, Locke and Hume, did not go far enough in their account of experience. They missed some of its (...) most important aspects, namely connections and relations, and as a result they were left with discrete sense data and sense objects. (shrink)
This book is the first to offer a detailed analysis of Aristotelian and Kantian ethics together, in a way that remains faithful to the texts and responsive to debates in contemporary ethics. Recent moral philosophy has seen a revival of interest in the concept of virtue, and with it a reassessment of the role of virtue in the work of Aristotle and Kant. This book brings that re-assessment to a new level of sophistication. Nancy Sherman argues that Kant preserves a (...) notion of virtue in his moral theory that bears recognisable traces of the Aristotelian and Stoic traditions, and that his complex anthropology of morals brings him into surprising alliance with Aristotle. She develops her argument through close readings of major texts by both Aristotle and Kant, illustrating points of congruence and contrast. (shrink)
This _Biographical Dictionary_ provides detailed accounts of the lives, works, influence and reception of thinkers from all the major philosophical schools and traditions of the twentieth-century. This unique volume covers the lives and careers of thinkers from all areas of philosophy - from analytic philosophy to Zen and from formal logic to aesthetics. All the major figures of philosophy, such as Nietzsche, Wittgenstein and Russell are examined and analysed. The scope of the work is not merely restricted to the major (...) figures in western philosophy but also covers in depth a significant number of thinkers from the near and far east and from the non-European Hispanic-language communities. The _Biographical Dictionary_ also includes a number of general entries dealing with important schools of philosophy, such as the Vienna Circle, or currents of thought, such as vitalism. These allow the reader to set the individual biographies in the context of the philosophical history of the period. With entries written by over 100 leading philosophy scholars, the _Biographical Dictionary_ is the most comprehensive survey of twentieth-century thinkers to date. _Structure_ The book is structured alphabetically by philosopher. Each entry is identically structured for ease of access and covers: * nationality * dates and places of birth and death * philosophical style or school * areas of interest * higher education * significant influences * main appointments * main publications * secondary literature * account of intellectual development and main ideas * critical reception and impact At the end of the book a _glossary_ gives accounts of the schools, movements and traditions to which these philosophers belonged, and thorough _indexes_ enable the reader to access the information in several ways: * by nationality * by major areas of contribution to philosophy e.g. aesthetics * by major influences on the thinker concerned e.g. Plato, Kant, Wittgenstein. (shrink)
The theories of language and society of Giambattista Vico (1668-1744) are examined in this textual analysis of the full range of his theoretical writings, with special emphasis on his little-known early works. Vico's fundamental importance in the history of European ideas lies in his strong anti-Cartesian, anti-French and anti-Enlightenment views. In an age in which intellectuals adopted a rational approach, Vico stressed the nonrational element in man - in particular, imagination - as well as social and civil relationships, none of (...) them reducible to the scientific theories so popular in his time. (shrink)
Ramsey presents a new analysis and interpretation of the religious views of the nineteenth-century American philosopher William James. He argues that James was primarily motivated by religious concerns in his writings and that this fact has been obscured by the artificial scholarly division of his "philosophy," "psychology," and "religion"-- a symptom of the professionalization which James himself strenuously resisted in his own time.
This book examines Rousseau’s ideas about the natural transparency of human intention, the loss of this transparency in the opaque cities of Europe, and the possibility of its restoration within small republican communities. The author weaves together Rousseau’s provocative conjectures about transparency and opaqueness to provide an original interpretation of Rousseau’s political thought and its bearing on several contemporary controversies. He also argues that civic cooperation in Rousseau’s model republic requires mutual surveillance; that Hobbes’s argument for a sovereign state assumes (...) the natural opacity of human intention; and that Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” cannot efficiently coordinate the self-interested choices of opaque traders. (shrink)
Although known as the founder of modern utilitarianism and the source of analytical jurisprudence, Bentham today is infrequently read but often caricatured. The present book offers a reinterpretation of Bentham's main philosophical doctrines, his principle of utility and his analysis of law, philosophical doctrines, as they are developed in Bentham's most important works. A new reading is also given to his theory of law, which suggests Bentham's insight, originality, and continued interest for philosophers and legal theorists. First published in 1973, (...) this revised edition contains a new Preface, a revised Bibliography, and two new Indexes, one of Names and one of Subjects, which together replace the original index. (shrink)
Dancy (philosophy, Florida State U.) presents two new interpretations of the evidence regarding the metaphysical ideas of two important figures in Plato's Academy, Eudoxus and Speusippus, and of Aristotle's reaction to those ideas.