Seekers know that they will search all their lives not only for what they have lost, but above all for what they do not yet know and that they are not even sure exists. Augusto Cavadi, to whom this book is dedicated on his 70th birthday, is an indomitable seeker. For this reason a group of friends and colleagues wrote these collected testimonies, reflections, ideas and suggestions inspired by his writings and his life as an anti-academic philosopher without a (...) tie--Translated from back cover. (shrink)
Moral intuitions are generally understood as automatic strong responses to moral facts. In this paper, I offer a metacognitive account according to which the strength of moral intuitions denotes the level of confidence of a subject. Confidence is a metacognitive appraisal of the fluency with which a subject processes information from a morally salient stimulus. I show that this account is supported by some empirical evidence, explains the main features of moral intuition and is preferable to emotional or quasi-perceptual views (...) of moral intuition. (shrink)
Dual-process theories of the mind emphasize how reasoning is an interplay between intuitive and reflective thinking. This paper aims to understand how the two types of processing interact in the moral domain. According to a ‘default-interventionist’ model of moral reasoning intuition and reflection are conflicting cognitions: intuitive thinking would elicit heuristic and deontological responses, whereas reflection would favour utilitarian judgements. However, the evidence for the default interventionist view is inconclusive and challenged by a growing amount of counterevidence in recent years. (...) The recent empirical findings favour an interdependent rather than conflicting view of the two types of information processing in the moral domain. In this view, which I call dual-process reflective equilibrium, intuition and reflection cooperate in moral reasoning to reach a reflective goal, which is supposedly normative justification. In sum, on the one hand, the scope of moral intuitions extends to selecting relevant information and calling for reflection whenever a problem presents conflicting aspects; on the other hand, the purpose of moral reflection is to rationalize pre-reflective intuitions to provide articulated and accessible reasons. (shrink)
The imperativist strand of positivism derives law from an actual person or set of persons wielding a monopoly of force. The rule-based positivism of H.L.A. Hart has more sublty identified a matter-of-fact rule of recognition in place of such a sovereign one or many. But sovereignty is not a matter-of-fact of any kind; rather it is partly the product of what I call qua arguments. I reconstruct the reasoning, in the extradition case of Augusto Pinochet in the British House (...) of Lords, providing a focus for an account of the limits of legal positivism in the application of the principle par in parem non habet imperium. Sovereign power is interpreted through reasoning that is at its margin more moral than technically legal. (shrink)
This paper discusses an influential view of moral intuition, according to which moral intuition is a kind of intellectual perception. The core claim of this quasi-perceptualist theory is that intuitions are like perceptual experiences in presenting propositions as true. In this work, it is argued that quasi-perceptualism is explanatorily superfluous in the moral domain: there is no need to postulate a sui generis quasi-perceptual mental state to account for moral intuition since rival theories can explain the salient mental features of (...) moral intuition. The essay is structured into three main sections. In a first one, I introduce the quasi-perceptualist view of moral intuition. In the second, I show that ordinary accounts can explain the salient psychological features of moral intuition without referring to intellectual perceptions. Finally, in the third section, I discuss whether moral intuitions have presentational phenomenology like perceptual experiences. (shrink)
Ambivalence, i.e., the simultaneous holding of negative and positive evaluations toward the same object, is an empirically well-documented phenomenon and an important aspect of ordinary experience. However, it has not received sufficient philosophical attention. This essay accomplishes two aims: first, a comprehensive and empirically informed account of ambivalence is provided; second, the rationality of ambivalence in practical and nonpractical contexts is defended.
One question in moral psychology concerns the role of emotions to motivate moral action. This question has recently become more urgent, because it is now clearer that cognitive developmental theories cannot offer a complete explanation of moral functioning. This paper suggests that emotion, as is typically understood in psychology, cannot be seen as the basis for an acceptable explanation of moral behaviour and motivation. However, it is argued that it is possible to understand emotions as embedded in agentic processes, and (...) regulated by conscious concerns. So understood, emotions acquire an important role in the person's moral life. These conclusions are reached through an extensive review of psychological and philosophical conceptions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved). (shrink)
1968 has been considered by Augusto Del Noce as “the richest year in implicit philosophy since 1945”. Indeed, the student protests of the time, far from being a circumstantial movement, constituted a rebellion against the “technocratic society”, that is, a protest against the model of society that the West built after the Second World War to oppose communism. However, this rebellion was frustrated because it assumed a large part of the criteria that had led the left to change the (...) struggle for the emancipation of the proletariat, fruit of their concern for the weak, for the banners of sexual emancipation. Del Noce warns that, lacking an adequate philosophical foundation, the May 68 movement ended up being unable to resist the instrumental rationality of the society it sought to combat. (shrink)
Moral particularism, in its extreme version, is the theory that argues that there are no invariant context-independent moral reasons. It states also that moral knowledge is not constituted by principles and that these are useless or harmful in practice. In this paper, I intend to argue that this position takes context-sensitiveness of reasons too seriously and has to face many philosophical problems—mainly because its most important argument (the argument from holism of reasons) is not convincing but also because a pluralist (...) generalist account is preferable both from metaethical and normative points of view. (shrink)
Recently, in metaethics, several authors have taken into account the view according to which moral knowledge can be based on perceptual or quasi-perceptual experience. This kind of knowledge is defined as moral perception. This paper aims to introduce the recent debate about moral perception. Specifically, the possibility of moral perception will be discussed, and many different views of moral perception will be compared.
RESUMO A partir do exame da tradição heraclitiana e platônica sobre a transitoriedade e a imortalidade - conceitos compreendidos como universais - este artigo defende a seguinte antinomia como tese: para haver temporalidade é preciso haver eternidade. Essa tese é demonstrada por meio do estudo e atualização das noções de alma, espírito, ideia e memória, as quais estão conectadas invariavelmente ao tempo passado como princípio ontológico do fenômeno histórico. Para além do ponto de vista filosófico, portanto, da perspectiva específica do (...) conhecimento histórico, este estudo expõe algumas implicações teóricas acerca das condições de possibilidade da história, que são discutidas, finalmente, em diálogo com Friedrich Nietzsche e Jacob Burckhardt. ABSTRACT From the analysis of the Heraclitian and Platonic tradition on transience and immortality - understood as universal concepts - this essay defends the following antinomy as its thesis: if there is temporality there must be eternity. This thesis is demonstrated through the study and updating of the notions of soul, spirit, idea and memory, which are invariably connected to the past as the ontological principle of the historical phenomenon. Beyond the philosophical point of view, therefore, from the specific perspective of historical knowledge, this study exposes some theoretical implications about the conditions of possibility of history, which are finally discussed in dialogue with Friedrich Nietzsche and Jacob Burckhardt. (shrink)
This dissertation is a contribution to the field of empirically informed metaethics, which combines the rigorous conceptual clarity of traditional metaethics with a careful review of empirical evidence. More specifically, this work stands at the intersection of moral psychology, moral epistemology, and philosophy of action. The study comprises six chapters on three distinct (although related) topics. Each chapter is structured as an independent paper and addresses a specific open question in the literature. The first part concerns the psychological features and (...) cognitive function of moral intuition. Chapter 1 (“Moral intuition, strength, and metacognition”) is focused on the concept of intuitive strength, which is one of the defining features of moral intuition. I provide a metacognitive account of intuitive strength and show why such a view is preferable to emotional or quasi-perceptual accounts. Then, in Chapter 2 (“Dual process reflective equilibrium”), I will discuss the interplay between intuition and reflection in moral reasoning. I will contend that the influential “default-interventionist” model of reasoning, theorized by Greene, is insufficiently supported by the evidence. In light of some recent studies, I outline an account of moral reasoning in which intuition and reflection are not in conflict but cooperate to reach a reflective goal. I call this model dual process reflective equilibrium. The aim of the first part is descriptive, i.e., it argues for an accurate understanding of moral intuition and reasoning in light of the available empirical evidence. In contrast, the second part addresses a normative question: is a subject epistemically justified in forming a belief on the basis of a moral intuition? Skeptics of moral intuition argue that accepting moral intuitions should be the exception rather than the rule to the extent that epistemically defective processes determine the content of moral intuitions. Chapter 3 (“Moral intuitionism and the reliability challenge”) introduces the recent empirical challenges to the reliability of moral intuitions and elaborates a promising strategy for defending intuitionism. In short, I consider whether subjects can track the reliability of their intuitions with their confidence. In Chapter 4 (“The argument from limited cognitive resources”), I evaluate a different strategy to defend moral intuitionism. Specifically, I develop an argument according to which accepting moral intuitions is legitimate because it is the most rational option that a subject has, given her limited resources. The third and final part of the dissertation concerns the role of moral intuitions in action. The influence of automatic processes on moral conduct raises different challenges to moral philosophy. The first challenge is to explain how a subject can be motivated by certain values without the mental effort of deliberation. Chapter 5 (“Caring, moral motivation, and automatic conduct”) tackles this issue. Chapter 6 (“Moral sensitivity as skillful automaticity”) aims to explain how moral agents can be sensitive to good reasons through automatic mental processes. (shrink)
According to the mythical-religious literature time is determined by the eternal nature of divinity or origin of all things. From this adagio, theological literature is provoked and studies on the eternal nature of divinity suggest that if the universe was created the image of its creator the first must also be eternal. Therefore the question arises: how to shape that which by nature is formless, infinite, namely eternity? To answer this question the following paper develops a brief history about the (...) Judeo-Christian tradition on the problem of time and its relationship with eternity and also tries to prepare at the end one logical answer to the question about the form of eternity. (shrink)
Foundational ontologies, central constructs in ontological investigations and engineering alike, are based on ontological categories. Firstly proposed by Aristotle as the very ur- elements from which the whole of reality can be derived, they are not easy to identify, let alone partition and/or hierarchize; in particular, the question of their number poses serious challenges. The late medieval philosopher Dietrich of Freiberg wrote around 1286 a tutorial that can help us today with this exceedingly difficult task. In this paper, I discuss (...) ontological categories and their importance for foundational ontologies from both the contemporary perspective and the original Aristotelian viewpoint, I provide the translation from the Latin into English of Dietrich's De origine II with an introductory elaboration, and I extract a foundational ontology–that is in fact a single-category one–from this text rooted in Dietrich's specification of types of subjecthood and his conception of intentionality as causal operation. (shrink)
O presente artigo pretende demonstrar os elementos que compõem a realidade paraguaia que delira, segundo o autor Augusto Roa Bastos, e como incorpora tais elementos ao seu gesto escritural resultando em uma escritura caleidoscópica.
La mia collaborazione con Massimo Campanini si è sviluppata su comuni interessi per i classici del pensiero islamico ma con competenze assai diverse, essendo io più orientato a studiare gli effetti e gli sviluppi che essi produssero sul pensiero occidentale medievale e moderno attraverso una pratica di traduzioni spesso creative per imprecisione – l’inverso dell’operazione che essi stessi avevano fatto rispetto a Platone e Aristotele. Averroè-Ibn Rushd è già un bell’esempio di deformazione del nome, ma proprio la formazione della sua (...) opera e i modi in cui è stata trasmessa al mondo ebraico e cristiano sono singolari testimonianze degli esiti ambigui del processo traduttivo. Cerchiamo infatti di mostrare come la lettura del _De substantia orbis_ abbia stimolato sia nel Medioevo che nel Rinascimento non solo il rifiuto del creazionismo ma anche posizioni panteistiche, mentre la famosa tesi dell’intelletto materiale unico contenuta nel _Commentarium Magnum_ al _De anima_ aristotelico ha stimolato molteplici varianti del monopsichismo, da Spinoza a Marx e alla più recente letteratura post-strutturalista. My collaboration with Massimo Campanini developed around our common interests in the classics of Islamic thought, but with very different approaches, since I am more oriented towards studying the effects and developments they produced on medieval and modern Western thought through a practice of translation that was often creative in terms of inaccuracy – so the opposite of what had been done with respect to Plato and Aristotle. The same Averroes-Ibn Rushd is a fine example of name distortion, and the very formation of his work and the ways in which it was transmitted to the Jewish and Christian world are singular testimonies to the ambiguous outcomes of this translation process. I try to show how the reading of _De substantia orbis_ in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance stimulated not only the rejection of creationism but also pantheistic beliefs, while the famous thesis on the material intellect exposed in the _Commentarium Magnum_ to Aristotle’s _De anima_ stimulated many variants of monopsychism, from Spinoza to Marx and the more recent post-structuralist literature. (shrink)
Cartography represents monsters at the borders of the known world. Those monsters are evoked by politics in order to denounce the dangers of revolution : the many-headed hydra which represents the nightmares of the dominant classes and that must be detroyed or subjugated. Heretics, sauvages, rebel slaves, the industrial proletariat and finally the precarious workers, whose anomaly is exploited to produce profit. But the ultimate cold monster, the Leviathan, is indeed the State….
Resumen: El título de Niebla, acaso el relato más importante de toda la obra de Unamuno, sugiere las ideas de confusión, indefinición e imprecisión. Lo contrario de lo que se busca en el ámbito intelectual, aunque caracteres esenciales en toda vida humana. Tomando estas coordenadas como punto de partida, nuestro propósito es relacionar la nebulosa vida de Augusto Pérez, sus acciones y circunstancias, en apariencia azarosas e impredecibles, con la concepción de Schopenhauer en torno a la Voluntad, el querer (...) y el carácter humano. Esto nos permitirá conciliar, o confundir, la libertad con el determinismo y la realidad con la ficción, incurriendo en contradicción, si es preciso, para sugerir que quizá la vida de Augusto, como la nuestra, no sea otra cosa que el despliegue temporal de un eterno e inquebrantable anhelo.: Mist, perhaps the most important of all of Unamuno’s works, suggests ideas of confusion, uncertainty and imprecision; the opposite of what is desired in intellectual spheres, but essential features in every human life. Taking these coordinates as a starting point, the aim of this study is to link the nebulous life of Augusto Pérez, his apparently random and unpredictable actions and circumstances, to Schopenhauer’s conception of Will, desire and human character. This will allow this study to bring together, or confuse, freedom with determinism and reality with fiction. If necessary, we will incur in the contradiction of suggesting that Augusto’s life, much like ours, may just be the temporary display of an eternal and unbreakable fervor. (shrink)