(2008). A Review of “Philosophy of Foucault (European Philosophy Series)”. Educational Studies: Vol. 44, SPECIAL ISSUE: INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACHES TO EDUCATIONAL REFORM WITHIN A FOUCAULTIAN FRAMEWORK, pp. 77-82.
At the end of the nineteenth century, the manual training (MT) movement was a major concern for educators, industrialists, and politicians, and this included John Dewey. For Dewey. his unique version of MT, or "occupations," was a method of learning by doing that was at the center of the curriculum and had equal weight with other studies. It was also a key component of a pedagogy that considered the psychology of the child,1 liberal studies, and the social dimension of learning; (...) however, it was not trade or vocational education.2Nevertheless, over the years what Dewey meant by occupations has been either misinterpreted or ignored for a plethora of reasons and, at times, seen as synonymous with vocational .. (shrink)
John Hyman has used the objective character of occlusion shapes and of relative occlusion sizes to develop a more objective approach both in the analysis of linear perspective and in the theory of depiction. To this end Hyman develops two Occlusion Principles, plus an Aperture Colour Principle (which I do not discuss), which, together with our knowledge of appearances, are supposed to tell us what a picture depicts. I argue that Hyman underestimates the crucial role of the psychological element in (...) the work that the objective occlusion shape and relative occlusion sizes are assigned to do. Two pictures may have different contents in spite of the same occlusion shapes and the same (relative) occlusion sizes. It is the operation of constancy scaling in pictorial space which frustrates Hyman’s objectivism both in the domain of linear perspective and in the domain of depiction. (shrink)
This book is a collection of fourteen essays on the themes of selfhood and rationality in ancient Greek philosophy. The discussion ranges over seven centuries of innovative thought, starting with Heraclitus’ injunction to listen to the cosmic logos, and concluding with Plotinus’ criticism of those who make embodiment essential to human identity. For the Greek philosophers the notion of a rational self was bound up with questions about divinity and happiness called eudaimonia, meaning a god-favoured life or a life of (...) likeness to the divine. While these questions are remote from current thought, Long also situates the book’s themes in modern discussions of the self and the self’s normative relation to other people and the world at large. Ideas and behaviour attributed to Socrates and developed by Plato are at the book’s centre. They are preceded by essays that explore general facets of the soul’s rationality. Later chapters bring in salient contributions made by Aristotle and Stoic philosophers. All but one of these pieces has been previously published in periodicals or conference volumes, but the author has revised and updated everything. The book is written in a style that makes it accessible to many kinds of reader, not only professors and graduate students but also anyone interested in the history of our identity as rational animals. (shrink)
Older adults prefer positive over negative information in a lab setting, compared to young adults. The extent to which OA avoid negative events or information relevant for their health and safety is not clear. We first investigated age differences in preferences for fear-enhancing vs. fear-reducing news articles during the Ebola Outbreak of 2014. We were able to collect data from 15 YA and 13 OA during this acute health event. Compared to YA, OA were more likely to read the fear-enhancing (...) article, select hand-sanitizer over lip balm, and reported greater fear of Ebola. We further investigated our research question during the COVID-19 pandemic with 164 YA and 171 OA. Participants responded to an online survey about the COVID-19 pandemic across 13 days during the initial peak of the pandemic in the United States. Both YA and OA preferred to read positive over negative news about the coronavirus, but OA were even more likely than YA to prefer the positive news article. No age differences in the fear of contraction were found, but OA engaged in more health-protective behaviors compared to YA. Although OA may not always report greater fear than YA or seek out negative information related to a health concern, they still engage in protective health behaviors. Thus, although positivity effects were observed in attention and emotional reports, OA still modified their behaviors more than YA, suggesting that positivity effects did not hamper OA ability to respond to a health crisis. (shrink)
For the lack of forty-nine drachmas Socrates was unable to attend the costly epideixis of Prodicus from which he would have learnt the truth about correct use of words. From Prodicus' ὥραι Socrates could also have learnt the concepts and characteristic words associated with arete and kakia: these compete in that work for the allegiance of Heracles, parading their respective characteristics. Thanks to Professor Arthur Adkins we have had for the past decade a book which not only confronts arete and (...) kakia, but also analyses the meaning and usage of many Greek words for the evaluation of action from Homer to Aristotle. The importance of this book is generally acknowledged but it has not received the detailed discussion it deserves. Professor Adkins finds the social structure of ancient Greece inimical to the development of an adequate concept of moral responsibility. He shows, in a most interesting manner, how Greek values changed as the needs of society changed. (shrink)
La collection Ancient Wisdom For Modern Readers présente des textes de philosophie antique dans des traductions nouvelles, afin de « rendre la sagesse pratique du monde ancien accessible pour la vie moderne ». Plusieurs ouvrages ont déjà été publiés, comme How to be a friend, traduction du De l’amitié de Cicéron par P. Freeman (2018). Dans How to be free, Anthony A. Long propose une traduction nouvelle du Manuel d’Épictète, ainsi que de neuf extraits de ses Entretiens, choisis pour (...) leurs lien... (shrink)
These lines, presented as they appear in the O.C.T., are among the most difficult and hotly disputed that Juvenal wrote. The poet defends his decision not to attack contemporary politicians directly: ‘expose a Tigellinus’, he says, ‘and you know what the consequences will be’. It has long been recognized that the consequences related are probably inspired by those suffered by the Christians in A.D. 64 during the reign of Nero, and so vividly described by Tacitus.
Dennett's "Consciousness Explained" (1991) is an inspiring but also a highly frustrating book. The line of the argument seems to be clear, but then at second sight it fades away. It turns out that Dennett uses six of the seven strategies which I discuss in my 'The Seven Strategies of the Sophisticated Pseudo-Scientist: A Look into Freud's Rhetorical Tool Box' (J. Gen. Phil. Sci., 2001) Discussing important examples of these strategies I show why "Consciousness Explained" is such a frustrating book. (...) As the examples used do not reflect minor problems but go to the heart of the matter and concern the book's main areas of contention, it turns out that, in spite of the valuable and insightful details, Dennett's materialistic view of consciousness is supported mainly by rhetorical sleights of hand. (shrink)
When Claudius came to power in January 41 he did not hesitate to distance himself from his predecessor's behaviour and policies, and among other measures, Suetonius reports, he abolished all Gaius' acta. The precise implications of this move are not made clear. Certainly, the extremely unpopular taxes introduced in Rome near the end of Gaius' reign were annulled, several people convicted of maiestas were set free, and the monies previously confiscated from negligent, and possibly corrupt, road commissioners were returned. But (...) if the abolition of the acta was as sweeping as Suetonius seems to imply, a number of popular and useful measures must inevitably have been abrogated at the same time, and as a matter of routine they would need to be reintroduced by Claudius. The arrangements with the client kings may well have belonged to this general category, and if we assume that this was indeed the case we shall have an explanation for a number of apparent inconsistencies in the literary sources. It should be observed that in the early part of his principate Gaius went out of his way to be a ‘constitutional’ ruler. The appointment of the client kings would have been handled so as not to seem like the arbitrary exercise of power. Certainly, when the three sons of the murdered king of Thrace, Polemo, Cotys and Rhoemetalces received new kingdoms in 38, Dio stresses that the act was legitimised by a formal senatorial decree. If client kings had generally been established by a formal and legal process their appointments could quite well have come to an end with the abolition of the acta in January 41. (shrink)
This essay argues that Stoicism is the ancient philosophy most relevant to modern politics and civic education. Its relevance is due not to the advocacy of any specific political system or public policy but to its theory that the human good depends primarily on rationality and excellence of character rather than on material prosperity and productivity. According to Stoicism, all human beings are related to one another in virtue of our communal nature as rational animals. Reflection on the norms of (...) human nature persuaded the Stoics that we all share a common interest in living just and mutually beneficial lives. This principle, though it favors an equitable distribution of goods and services, makes rationality and integrity, rather than material prosperity, the essential values of community and the measure of normative citizenship and lawmaking. Our goal as Stoic citizens is to practice the art of what is always possible or in our power—doing our best to live mutually beneficial and well-reasoned lives—while recognizing that the external success we are naturally inclined to aim at may be frustrated because we live in a world we can never fully control. (shrink)
The year of Livia's birth is nowhere explicitly recorded in any ancient sources, and can be determined only by calculating back from the date given in the sources for the year of her death. Both Tacitus and Dio place that death securely in A.D. 29. Tacitus limits himself to the observation that by then she had lived into extreme old age, aetate extrema, but Dio adds the more precise and useful information that at the time of her death she had (...) lived for eighty-six years: ef ξ καì ὀγδοκουτα τη ζσασα Less usefully, Pliny the Elder states that Livia herself attributed her eighty-two years to her consumption of Pucine wine, which she drank exclusively . Whatever the merits of Pliny's health tips, his chronological information is of little service in determining when she was born. (shrink)