Foucault and Religion seeks to unearth a new dimension of Foucault scholarship. Renowned Foucault scholar Jeremy Carrette reveals not simply how Foucault's work can be applied to religion but how a religious question at the heart of Foucault's own work offers a radical challenge to religious ideas. Carrette argues that Foucault offers a twofold critique of Christianity by bringing the body and sexuality into religious practice and exploring a political spirituality of the self. This first major commentary on (...) Foucault and religion opens up the diverse religious questions the philosopher raises in his work, and sheds new light on how Foucault challenges religious thinking and transforms religious understanding. (shrink)
Michel Foucault and Theology brings together a selection of essays by leading Foucault scholars on a variety of themes within the history, thought and practice of theology. Revealing the diverse ways that the work of Michel Foucault (1926-1984) has been.
Charles Griswold has written a comprehensive philosophical study of Smith's moral and political thought. Griswold sets Smith's work in the context of the Enlightenment and relates it to current discussions in moral and political philosophy. Smith's appropriation as well as criticism of ancient philosophy, and his carefully balanced defence of a liberal and humane moral and political outlook, are also explored. This 1999 book is a major philosophical and historical reassessment of a key figure in the Enlightenment that will be (...) of particular interest to philosophers and political and legal theorists, as well as historians of ideas, rhetoric, and political economy. (shrink)
The study of metaphor is now firmly established as a central topic within cognitive science and the humanities. We marvel at the creative dexterity of gifted speakers and writers for their special talents in both thinking about certain ideas in new ways, and communicating these thoughts in vivid, poetic forms. Yet metaphors may not only be special communicative devices, but a fundamental part of everyday cognition in the form of 'conceptual metaphors'. An enormous body of empirical evidence from cognitive linguistics (...) and related disciplines has emerged detailing how conceptual metaphors underlie significant aspects of language, thought, cultural and expressive action. Despite its influence and popularity, there have been major criticisms of conceptual metaphor. This book offers an evaluation of the arguments and empirical evidence for and against conceptual metaphors, much of which scholars on both sides of the wars fail to properly acknowledge. (shrink)
I explain why, from the perspective of knowledge-centric anti-luck epistemology, objective act consequentialist theories of ethics imply skepticism about the moral status of our prospective actions and also tend to be self-defeating, undermining the justification of consequentialist theories themselves. For according to knowledge-centric anti-luck epistemology there are modal anti-luck demands on both knowledge and justification, and it turns out that our beliefs about the moral status of our prospective actions are almost never able to satisfy these demands if objective act (...) consequentialism is true. This kind of applied moral skepticism introduces problematic limits on our ability to use objective act consequentialism’s explanatory power as evidence for its truth. This is, in part, a product of higher-order defeat as I explain in the final section. There is, however, a silver lining for objective act consequentialists. For there is at least one type of objective act consequentialism, prior existence consequentialism, that is poised to avoid at least some of the epistemic problems discussed in this paper. (shrink)
William James's The Varieties of Religious Experience was an intellectual landmark, paving the way for modern study of parapsychology and religious experience. In this indispensable new companion to the Varietie s, key international experts in the fields of religious studies, psychology and mysticism offer contemporary responses to James's book, exploring its historical importance and modern relevance. As the only critical work dedicated to the cross-disciplinary influence of The Varieties of Religious Experience , it stands as a testament to James's genius (...) and ongoing legacy. (shrink)
Measurement is fundamental to all the sciences, the behavioural and social as well as the physical and in the latter its results provide our paradigms of 'objective fact'. But the basis and justification of measurement is not well understood and is often simply taken for granted. Henry Kyburg Jr proposes here an original, carefully worked out theory of the foundations of measurement, to show how quantities can be defined, why certain mathematical structures are appropriate to them and what meaning attaches (...) to the results generated. Crucial to his approach is the notion of error - it can not be eliminated entirely from its introduction and control, her argues, arises the very possibility of measurement. Professor Kyburg's approach emphasises the empirical process of making measurements. In developing it he discusses vital questions concerning the general connection between a scientific theory and the results which support it. (shrink)
Interpreting Figurative Meaning critically evaluates the recent empirical work from psycholinguistics and neuroscience examining the successes and difficulties associated with interpreting figurative language. There is now a huge, often contradictory literature on how people understand figures of speech. Gibbs and Colston argue that there may not be a single theory or model that adequately explains both the processes and products of figurative meaning experience. Experimental research may ultimately be unable to simply adjudicate between current models in psychology, linguistics and philosophy (...) of how figurative meaning is interpreted. Alternatively, the authors advance a broad theoretical framework, motivated by ideas from 'dynamical systems theory', that describes the multiple, interacting influences which shape people's experiences of figurative meaning in discourse. This book details past research and theory, offers a critical assessment of this work and sets the stage for a new vision of figurative experience in human life. (shrink)
Using Foucault’s conceptual frame from The Archaeology of Knowledge to read Foucault’s late deployment of “spirituality,” this article argues that Foucault’s enigmatic gesture in using this concept reveals a refusal of “rupture” from the Christian pre-modern discourse of “spirit.” Despite attempts to alter the “field of use,” Foucault’s genealogical commitment ensures a Christian continuity in modern discourses of transformation. In a detailed examination of the 1982 Collège de France lectures, the article returns Foucault’s use of “spirituality” to the Alexandrian joining (...) of philosophy and theology and the specificity of Christian practice and belief. (shrink)
Cognitive theories of metaphor understanding are typically described in terms of the mappings between different kinds of abstract, schematic, disembodied knowledge. My claim in this paper is that part of our ability to make sense of metaphorical language, both individual utterances and extended narratives, resides in the automatic construction of a simulation whereby we imagine performing the bodily actions referred to in the language. Thus, understanding metaphorical expressions like ‘grasp a concept’ or ‘get over’ an emotion involve simulating what it (...) must be like to engage in these specific activities, even though these actions are, strictly speaking, impossible to physically perform. This process of building a simulation, one that is fundamentally embodied in being constrained by past and present bodily experiences, has specific consequences for how verbal metaphors are understood, and how cognitive scientists, more generally, characterize the nature of metaphorical language and thought. (shrink)
In this book Grace Jantzen constructs a Quaker spirituality of beauty as a theological-philosophical response to a world preoccupied with death and violence. Having mapped the foundations of western cultural violence in the Greco-Roman period and the Judea-Christian tradition in _Foundations of Violence_ and _Violence to Eternity_, she now offers her alternative vision. This vision is an original and creative feminist reading of the Quaker tradition, considering George Fox and the writings of Quaker women, exploring the themes of inner light (...) and beauty as alternatives to violence and the obstacles to building such an alternative world. After showing how seventeenth-century Quakers offered a different option for modernity, she maps the philosophical and ethical implications of engaging with the world through beauty and its transforming power. Written for everyone interested in contemporary spirtuality, it explains how Quaker ideas can provide a way to transform our violent world into one that celebrates life rather than death, peace rather than violence. This work is the second of two posthumous publications to complete Grace M. Jantzen’s _Death and the Displacement of Beauty_ collection, which began with Foundations _of Violence_. (shrink)
Introduction: The politics of religious experience -- The ethics of knowledge in the human sciences -- The ethical veil of the knowledge economy -- Binary knowledge and the protected category -- Economic formations of psychology and religion -- Religion, politics, and psychoanalysis -- Maslow's economy of religious experience -- Cognitive capital and the codification of religion -- Conclusion: Critique and the ethics of not-knowing.
In this volume _Grace M. Jantzen_ continues her groundbreaking analysis of death and beauty in western thought by examining the religious roots of death and violence in the Jewish and Christian tradition, which underlie contemporary values. She shows how man’s fear of the female is often implicated in religious violence and in her critique of the Hebrew Bible and the Christian New Testament she examines a range of themes that show the western preoccupation with necrophilia. She examines the relation of (...) death to the Jewish covenant, the nature of monotheism, Holy War and the Christian covenant and kingdom. However, Jantzen recognises that submerged beneath these themes in Judaism and Christianity are traces of an alternative world of beauty and life. Jantzen’s internationally recognised feminist philosophy of religion puts forward a powerful analysis of patriarchy and violence and reveals the hidden power of natality. Her work is a searching challenge for our times and one that gives hope in a violent world. This work is the first of two posthumous publications to complete her impressive genealogy death and beauty of western thought. (shrink)
Originally published by Routledge in 1988, this pioneering collection of essays now features a new preface and updated bibliography by the editor, reflecting the most significant developments in Plato scholarship during the past decade.
According to Philip Kitcher, scientific unification is achieved via the derivation of numerous scientific statements from economies of argument schemata. I demonstrate that the unification of selection phenomena across domains in which it is claimed to occur--evolutionary biology, immunology and, speculatively, neurobiology--is unattainable on Kitcher's view. I then introduce an alternative method for rendering the desired unification based on the concept of a mechanism schema. I conclude that the gain in unification provided by the alternative account suggests that Kitcher's view (...) is defective. (shrink)
This paper explores the trade-off between cognitive effort and cognitive effects during immediate metaphor comprehension. We specifically evaluate the fundamental claim of relevance theory that metaphor understanding, like all utterance interpretation, is constrained by the presumption of optimal relevance (Sperber and Wilson, 1995, p. 270): the ostensive stimulus is relevant enough for it to be worth the addressee's effort to process it, and the ostensive stimulus is the most relevant one compatible with the communicator's abilities and preferences. One important implication (...) of optimal relevance is that listeners follow a path of least effort and stop processing at the first interpretation that satisfies their expectation of relevance. They do this by trying to minimize cognitive effort while maximizing cognitive effects. Some relevance theory scholars suggest that metaphors should require additional cognitive effort to be understood, and that in return they yield more cognitive effects than does literal speech. Others claim that metaphors may be understood quickly, as soon as people infer enough effects for the speaker's utterance to meet their expectation of optimal relevance. Our analysis of the experimental evidence suggests that there is no systematic relationship between cognitive effort and cognitive effects in metaphor comprehension. We conclude that relevance theory need not make any general predictions about the effort needed to comprehend metaphors. Nevertheless, relevance theory is consistent with many of the findings in psycholinguistics on metaphor understanding, and can account for aspects of metaphor understanding that no other theory can explain. (shrink)
When a belief is self-fulfilling, having it guarantees its truth. When a belief is self-defeating, having it guarantees its falsity. These are the cases of “self-impacting” beliefs to be examined below. Scenarios of self-defeating beliefs can yield apparently dilemmatic situations in which we seem to lack sufficient reason to have any belief whatsoever. Scenarios of self-fulfilling beliefs can yield apparently dilemmatic situations in which we seem to lack reason to have any one belief over another. Both scenarios have been used (...) independently to challenge Evidentialism, on which what we may rationally believe is all and only what fits our current evidence. Here we tie the two scenarios together and explore what a knowledge-sensitive evidentialist approach to one implies for the other. (shrink)
I said that the book is brilliant. This is not so much because of the conclusions eventually reached about the inadequacy of a purely naturalistic approach to mind. These conclusions are already familiar in the work of Donald Davidson and others. Rather, it is because of the accumulation of historical detail and insight on the basis of which these conclusions are reached. It is often said, for instance, that Kant is a watershed figure, in some sense synthesizing and then moving (...) beyond both empiricism and naturalism. Hatfield uses these terms. But he reinvests them with meaning and energy and in the process shows how radical Kant was in refocusing, by way of a sharp distinction between empirical and transcendental inquiries, the central questions of philosophy. (shrink)