This chapter focuses on developing an experimental technique for inducing flow and creating instances of effortless action in the laboratory. The effort to experimentally induce flow involves two conditions which are correlated with the flow state: The firstis the idea that the challenges of a given task are well within one’s capabilities; the other involves perceived goals and immediate feedback from the given task. The chapter explores these factors along with other contextual factors, including autonomy and distractions, to experimentally induce (...) flow and demonstrate instances of effortless action in the laboratory. One of the most extensively used approaches for experimental induction of flow in the laboratory involves exploring difficulty levels of video games. (shrink)
This is the first book to explore the cognitive science of effortless attention and action. Attention and action are generally understood to require effort, and the expectation is that under normal circumstances effort increases to meet rising demand. Sometimes, however, attention and action seem to flow effortlessly despite high demand. Effortless attention and action have been documented across a range of normal activities--from rock climbing to chess playing--and yet fundamental questions about the cognitive science of effortlessness have gone largely unasked. (...) -/- This book draws from the disciplines of cognitive psychology, neurophysiology, behavioral psychology, genetics, philosophy, and cross-cultural studies. Starting from the premise that the phenomena of effortless attention and action provide an opportunity to test current models of attention and action, leading researchers from around the world examine topics including effort as a cognitive resource, the role of effort in decision making, the neurophysiology of effortless attention and action, the role of automaticity in effortless action, expert performance in effortless action, and the neurophysiology and benefits of attentional training. -/- Contributors: Joshua M. Ackerman, James H. Austin, John A. Bargh, Roy F. Baumeister, Sian L. Beilock, Chris Blais, Matthew M. Botvinick, Brian Bruya, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Marci S. DeCaro, Arne Dietrich, Yuri Dormashev, László Harmat, Bernhard Hommel, Rebecca Lewthwaite, Örjan de Manzano, Joseph T. McGuire, Brian P. Meier, Arlen C. Moller, Jeanne Nakamura, Evgeny N. Osin, Michael I. Posner, Mary K. Rothbart, M. R. Rueda, Brandon J. Schmeichel, Edward Slingerland, Oliver Stoll, Yiyuan Tang, Töres Theorell, Fredrik Ullén, Robert D. Wall, Gabriele Wulf. (shrink)
Recovering Reason: Essays in Honor of Thomas L. Pangle is a collection of essays composed by students and friends of Thomas L. Pangle to honor his seminal work and outstanding guidance in the study of political philosophy. These essays examine both Socrates' and modern political philosophers' attempts to answer the question of the right life for human beings, as those attempts are introduced and elaborated in the work of thinkers from Homer and Thucydides to Nietzsche and Charles Taylor.
Bringing between two covers the most influential and accessible articles on Plato's Republic, this collection illuminates what is widely held to be the most important work of Western philosophy and political theory. It will be valuable not only to philosophers, but to political theorists, historians, classicists, literary scholars, and interested general readers.
Classical American pragmatists, such as William James, John Dewey, and C. S. Peirce, have had little influence on the development of bioethics. Glenn McGee and the other authors whose essays make up this book believe that this is a mistake. They maintain that the work of these pragmatists constitutes an original and effective method for understanding and resolving bioethical dilemmas. Their collective goal is to convince the rest of us that they are right.
In this paper, I looked into the debate between feminism and multiculturalism via the works of Susan Moller Okin, Will Kymlicka and Martha C. Nussbaum. After analyzing Susan Okin's position in "Is Multiculturalism Bad For Women?", I tried to locate Okin's problematic stance towards multiculturalism in her specific form of feminist comprehensive liberalism, whilst defending Nussbaum's less problematic version of political liberalism.
We examine the important roles of two forms of capital—human and social—in the accumulation of critical resources that enable firms to adopt sound environmental management practices which contribute to better firm performance. Drawing on human and social capital theories and the resource-based view of the firm, we tested this proposition using data from a survey of 141 small manufacturing firms drawn from a survey of business enterprises in a metropolitan city in the southern region of the Philippines. The results of (...) our analysis using structural equation modelling-partial least square approach show that both human capital such as age, experience and education of managers of the firm and social capital such as external managerial ties and networks have significant and positive contribution to the environmental management resources of firms although the effects vary in magnitude. The accumulation of environmental management resources not only is positively linked to the adoption by firms of pro-environment practices but also fully mediates the effects of the two types of capital on the adoption of such practices. Pro-environment practices are positively linked to better performance outcomes. The findings underscore the need to account for the intangible and more tacit forms of capital such as managerial talent, knowledge, skills and social ties and networks in the wider debate on how small manufacturing firms in developing countries can address the pressing need to integrate environmental sustainability in business. (shrink)
A substantial body of evidence suggests that autobiographical recollection and simulation of future happenings activate a shared neural network. Many of the neural regions implicated in this network are affected in patients with bipolar disorder , showing altered metabolic functioning and/or structural volume abnormalities. Studies of autobiographical recall in BD reveal overgeneralization, where autobiographical memory comprises primarily factual or repeated information as opposed to details specific in time and in place and definitive of re-experiencing. To date, no study has examined (...) whether these deficits extend to future event simulation. We examined the ability of patients with BD and controls to imagine positive, negative and neutral future events using a modified version of the Autobiographical Interview that allowed for separation of episodic and non-episodic details. Patients were selectively impaired in imagining future positive, negative, and neutral episodic details; simulation of non-episodic details was equivalent across groups. (shrink)
Mastery imagery is used to regulate anxiety. The ability to image this content is associated with trait confidence and anxiety, but research examining mastery imagery ability's association with confidence and anxiety in response to a stressful event is scant. The present study examined whether trait mastery imagery ability mediated the relationship between confidence and anxiety, and the subsequent associations on performance in response to an acute psychological stress. Participants completed assessments of mastery imagery ability and engaged in a standardized acute (...) psychological stress task. Immediately prior to the task, confidence, cognitive and somatic anxiety intensity, and interpretation of anxiety symptoms regarding the task were assessed. Path analyses supported a model whereby mastery imagery ability mediated the relationship between confidence and cognitive and somatic anxiety interpretation. Greater mastery imagery ability and confidence were both directly associated with better performance on the stress task. Mastery imagery ability may help individuals experience more facilitative anxiety and perform better during stressful tasks. Improving mastery imagery ability by enhancing self-confidence may help individuals successfully cope with anxiety elicited during stressful situations. (shrink)
In this timely, provocative volume, essayists including Susan Moller Okin, Catherine A. MacKinnon, Cass Sunstein, Martha Minow, William Galston, and Sara McLanahan argue positions on sexuality, on the family, and on the proper role of law in these areas.
In 1816, Thomas Jefferson wrote that the discovery of “representative democracy has rendered useless almost everything written before on the structure of government; and in great measure, relieves our regret, if the political writing of Aristotle, or of any other ancient, have been lost, or are unfaithfully rendered or explained to us” (quoted in Saxonhouse, p. 13). No doubt there are historical reasons to study classical Greece, but between us and them lies not only the discovery of representative democracy, but (...) also the discoveries of Christianity, economics, national and trans-national political institutions, universal human rights, and modern science. What can modern political theory learn from the lessons of old books? Three recent volumes wrestle with this question. Confronting Tyranny asks what we can learn about modern oppressive institutions from their ancient ancestors. In Plato’s Fable, Joshua Mitchell claims that Plato’s Republic offers an account of ethical “imitation” superior to those offered by modern liberalism. In Free Speech and Democracy in Ancient Athens, Arlene Saxonhouse argues that free speech in antiquity differs from our rights-based understanding of the practice, and yet it shed light on the presuppositions of modern freedoms. (shrink)
Imagine that someone recovers relatively quickly, say, within two or three months, from grief over the death of her spouse, whom she loved and who loved her; and suppose that, after some brief interval, she remarries. Does the fact that she feels better and moves on relatively quickly somehow diminish the quality of her earlier relationship? Does it constitute a failure to do well by the person who died? Our aim is to respond to two arguments that give affirmative answers (...) to these questions. The first argument, which is developed by Dan Moller in “Love and Death”, states that recovering relatively quickly from grief over the deaths of people who are close to us is deeply regrettable, in one respect, because it means that these people were relatively unimportant to us. The second, which derives from some classic literary discussions of grief, states that such a recovery is regrettable because it amounts to abandoning the person who died. Responding to these arguments promises to dissolve certain anxieties about whether we do well by the people we love when they die. Beyond this, it promises to help us better understand what it means to cultivate good relationships with these people during their lives. (shrink)
It is natural for those with permissive attitudes toward abortion to suppose that, if they have examined all of the arguments they know against abortion and have concluded that they fail, their moral deliberations are at an end. Surprisingly, this is not the case, as I argue. This is because the mere risk that one of those arguments succeeds can generate a moral reason that counts against the act. If this is so, then liberals may be mistaken about the morality (...) of abortion. However, conservatives who claim that considerations of risk rule out abortion in general are mistaken as well. Instead, risk-based considerations generate an important but not necessarily decisive reason to avoid abortion. The more general issue that emerges is how to accommodate fallibilism about practical judgment in our decision-making. (shrink)
This paper presents a simple argument against life being the product of design. The argument rests on three points. We can conceive of the debate in terms of likelihoods, in the technical sense – how probable the design hypothesis renders our evidence, versus how probable the competing Darwinian hypothesis renders that evidence. God, as traditionally conceived, had many more options by which to bring about life as we observe it than were available to natural selection. That is, the relevant parameters (...) were, in many cases, far more constrained under natural selection. Utterly mundane features of the world, like that the earth is very old, are actually powerful evidence that the world was not designed, since that outcome was optional on the design hypothesis but nearly inevitable on natural selection. (shrink)
The notion that our society, its education system and its intellectual life, is characterised by a split between two cultures – the arts or humanities on one hand, and the sciences on the other – has a long history. But it was C. P. Snow's Rede lecture of 1959 that brought it to prominence and began a public debate that is still raging in the media today. This 50th anniversary printing of The Two Cultures and its successor piece, A Second (...) Look features an introduction by Stefan Collini, charting the history and context of the debate, its implications and its afterlife. The importance of science and technology in policy run largely by non-scientists, the future for education and research, and the problem of fragmentation threatening hopes for a common culture are just some of the subjects discussed. (shrink)
The notion that our society, its education system and its intellectual life, is characterised by a split between two cultures – the arts or humanities on one hand and the sciences on the other – has a long history. But it was C. P. Snow's Rede lecture of 1959 that brought it to prominence and began a public debate that is still raging in the media today. This fiftieth anniversary printing of The Two Cultures and its successor piece, A Second (...) Look features an introduction by Stefan Collini, charting the history and context of the debate, its implications and its afterlife. The importance of science and technology in policy run largely by non-scientists, the future for education and research, and the problem of fragmentation threatening hopes for a common culture are just some of the subjects discussed. (shrink)
In this paper we show how a realistic normative democratic theory can work within the constraints set by the most pessimistic empirical results about voting behaviour and elite capture of the policy process. After setting out the empirical evidence and discussing some extant responses by political theorists, we argue that the evidence produces a two-pronged challenge for democracy: an epistemic challenge concerning the quality and focus of decision-making and an oligarchic challenge concerning power concentration. To address the challenges we then (...) put forward three main normative claims, each of which is compatible with the evidence. We start with a critique of the epistocratic position commonly thought to be supported by the evidence. We then introduce a qualified critique of referenda and other forms of plebiscite, and an outline of a tribune-based system of popular control over oligarchic influence on the policy process. Our discussion points towards a renewal of democracy in a plebeian but not plebiscitarian direction: Attention to the relative power of social classes matters more than formal dispersal of power through voting. We close with some methodological reflections about the compatibility between our normative claims and the realist program in political philosophy. (shrink)
Aristotle's treatise De Interpretatione is one of his central works; it continues to be the focus of much attention and debate. C. W. A. Whitaker presents the first systematic study of this work, and offers a radical new view of its aims, its structure, and its place in Aristotle's system, basing this view upon a detailed chapter-by-chapter analysis.By treating the work systematically, rather than concentrating on certain selected passages, Whitaker is able to show that, contrary to traditional opinion, it forms (...) an organized and coherent whole. He argues that the De Interpretatione is intended to provide the underpinning for dialectic, the system of argument by question and answer set out in Aristotle's Topics; and he rejects the traditional view that the De Interpretatione concerns the assertion and is oriented towards the formal logic of the Prior Analytics. In doing so, he sheds valuable new light on some of Aristotle's most famous texts. (shrink)
This essay identifies ‘oligarchic harm’ as a dire threat confronting contemporary democracies. I provide a formal standard for classifying oligarchs: those who use personal access to concentrated wealth to pursue harmful forms of discretionary influence. I then use Aristotle to think through both the moral and the epistemic dilemmas of oligarchic harm, highlighting Aristotle’s concerns about the difficulties of using wealth as a ‘proxy’ for virtue. While Aristotle’s thought provides great resources for diagnosing oligarchic threats, it proves less useful as (...) a guide to democratic institutional design. Aristotle raises a deep-seated objection to democratic forms of ‘rule by the poor.’ A successful response to oligarchy must move beyond Aristotle’s objection and affirm the demos’ tripartite status as many, free, and poor. I briefly outline the terms of this ‘new’ mixed regime: one that seeks to tame oligarchy through a mixture of aggregative, deliberative, and plebeian institutions. (shrink)
Polygamy, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, punishing women for being raped, differential access for men and women to health care and education, unequal rights of ownership, assembly, and political participation, unequal vulnerability to violence. These practices and conditions are standard in some parts of the world. Do demands for multiculturalism — and certain minority group rights in particular — make them more likely to continue and to spread to liberal democracies? Are there fundamental conflicts between our commitment to gender equity (...) and our increasing desire to respect the customs of minority cultures or religions? In this book, the eminent feminist Susan Moller Okin and fifteen of the world’s leading thinkers about feminism and multiculturalism explore these unsettling questions in a provocative, passionate, and illuminating debate. Okin opens by arguing that some group rights can, in fact, endanger women. She points, for example, to the French government’s giving thousands of male immigrants special permission to bring multiple wives into the country, despite French laws against polygamy and the wives’ own bitter opposition to the practice. Okin argues that if we agree that women should not be disadvantaged because of their sex, we should not accept group rights that permit oppressive practices on the grounds that they are fundamental to minority cultures whose existence may otherwise be threatened. In reply, some respondents reject Okin’s position outright, contending that her views are rooted in a moral universalism that is blind to cultural difference. Others quarrel with Okin’s focus on gender, or argue that we should be careful about which group rights we permit, but not reject the category of group rights altogether. Okin concludes with a rebuttal, clarifying, adjusting, and extending her original position. These incisive and accessible essays — expanded from their original publication in Boston Review and including four new contributions — are indispensable reading for anyone interested in one of the most contentious social and political issues today. The diverse contributors, in addition to Okin, are Azizah al-Hibri, Abdullahi An-Na’im, Homi Bhabha, Sander Gilman, Janet Halley, Bonnie Honig, Will Kymlicka, Martha Nussbaum, Bhikhu Parekh, Katha Pollitt, Robert Post, Joseph Raz, Saskia Sassen, Cass Sunstein, and Yael Tamir. (shrink)
Robert C. Roberts first presented his vivid account of emotions as 'concern-based construals' in his book Emotions: An Essay in Aid of Moral Psychology. In this new book he extends that account to the moral life. He explores the ways in which emotions can be a basis for moral judgments, how they account for the deeper moral identity of actions we perform, how they are constitutive of morally toned personal relationships like friendship, enmity, collegiality and parenthood, and how pleasant and (...) unpleasant emotions interact with our personal wellbeing. He then sketches how, by means of their moral dimensions, emotions participate in our virtues and vices, and for better or worse, express our moral character. His rich study will interest a wide range of readers working on virtue ethics, moral psychology and emotion theory. (shrink)
What is empiricism and what could it be? Bas C. van Fraassen, one of the world’s foremost contributors to philosophical logic and the philosophy of science, here undertakes a fresh consideration of these questions and offers a program for renewal of the empiricist tradition. The empiricist tradition is not and could not be defined by common doctrines, but embodies a certain stance in philosophy, van Fraassen says. This stance is displayed first of all in a searing, recurrent critique of metaphysics, (...) and second in a focus on experience that requires a voluntarist view of belief and opinion._ _Van Fraassen focuses on the philosophical problems of scientific and conceptual revolutions and on the not unrelated ruptures between religious and secular ways of seeing or conceiving of ourselves. He explores what it is to be or not be secular and points the way toward a new relationship between secularism and science within philosophy. (shrink)
Bart Streumer argues that it is not possible for us to believe the error theory, where by ‘error theory’ he means the claim that our normative beliefs are committed to the existence of normative properties even though such properties do not exist. In this paper, we argue that it is indeed possible to believe the error theory. First, we suggest a critical improvement to Streumer’s argument. As it stands, one crucial premise of that argument—that we cannot have a belief while (...) believing that there is no reason to have it—is implausibly strong. We argue that for his purposes, Streumer’s argument only requires a weaker premise, namely that we cannot rationally have a belief while believing that there is no reason to have it. Secondly, we go on to refute the improved argument. Even in its weaker form, Streumer’s argument is either invalid or the crucial premise should be rejected. (shrink)
As one reads the classic works of political philosophy one is limited to books written by male authors. When reading interpretations of these authors it seems that the male philosophers were only concerned with the male citizen. Arlene Saxonhouse argues that these classic authors, from Plato to Machiavelli, while they praised the world of male public action, also recognized that the public world was not the totality of human existence. These authors, Saxonhouse says, saw that a private sphere which included (...) women existed, and that that sphere set limits upon and defined the possibilities of the public world. She argues further that the authors did not ignore the female, rather it is the inadequacies of modern scholarship that have made them appear to have done so. This volume shows how women have been an integral part of political philosophers' vision of the world, not a scattered side show in certain philosophical works. (shrink)
ABSTRACT This essay is a critical study of Jason Brennan's Against Democracy. We make three main points. First, we argue that Brennan's proposal of a right to competent government only works if one considers the absence of government a viable proposition, something most of his opponents are not prepared to do. Second, we suggest that Brennan's account of competent decision-making is blind to forms of oligarchic power that work against the very ideals of justice and epistemic virtue that competence is (...) meant to safeguard. Third, we muster empirical evidence to argue that, in the real world, democracy is not just about making decisions and selecting policies, in which case Brennan's argument misses its mark. (shrink)
Susan Moller Okin. AFTERWORD or greater weighting of these over “masculine" values. For how are women to continue to assume all of the nurturing activities that allegedly both follow from and reinforce their “naturally” superior virtues, and ...
Who bears responsibility for the actions of a city or state? Is it the entity that we sometimes call a nation? Or the individual members of the nation? Shakespeare’s Henry V includes a brief interchange the night before the battle at Agincourt that addresses this question. A disguised king and the common soldiers of his army debate who is responsible for the deaths that will occur during the forthcoming battle if the war they are fighting is unjust: the king or (...) his soldiers? Who will be punished on Judgment Day? The interchange opens up reflections on the challenge of deciding who acts when a state acts. Henry V is a play that emphasizes the role of the imagination as central to both stagecraft and the politics of creating a nation. Engaging with the medieval theory of the “king’s two bodies,” the Henry of Shakespeare’s play is caught between the desire to be the embodiment of the imagined nation and yet be his own “natural person” when questions of responsibility for the actions of the nation emerge. Dependent on the imagination to build a unified nation of diverse peoples, Henry desires to escape responsibility for the potentially unjust actions of the nation by focusing on the private actions of his individual subjects. The play thereby brings questions of responsibility for the actions of collective bodies founded by the imagination to the fore and forces us to explore who is responsible when states or nations act. (shrink)
"Reeve's book is an excellent companion to Plato's Apology and a valuable discussion of many of the main issues that arise in the early dialogues. Reeve is an extremely careful reader of texts, and his familiarity with the legal and cultural background of Socrates' trial allows him to correct many common misunderstandings of that event. In addition, he integrates his reading of the apology with a sophisticated discussion of Socrates' philosophy. The writing is clear and succinct, and the research is (...) informed by a thorough acquaintance with the secondary literature. Reeve's book will be accessible to any serious undergraduate, but it is also a work that will have to be taken into account by every scholar doing advanced research on Socrates." --Richard Kraut, Northwestern University. (shrink)