Daniel Graham offers a clear, accurate new translation of the eighth book of Aristotle's Physics, accompanied by a careful philosophical commentary to guide the reader towards understanding of this key text in the history of Western thought. It is the culmination of Aristotle's theory of nature: he explains motion in the universe in terms of a single source and regulating principle, a first `unmoved mover'.
According to both deontologists and consequentialists, if there is a reason to promote the general happiness – or to promote any other state of affairs unrelated to one's own projects or self-interest – then the reason must apply to everyone. This view seems almost self-evident; to challenge it is to challenge the way we think of moral reasons. I contend, however, that the view depends on the unwarranted assumption that the only way to restrict the application scope of a reason (...) for action is by restricting it to those agents whose interests or projects are involved in the reason. In fact normative theories may coherently restrict application scopes in other ways. Thus we must take seriously the possibility that the reason to promote the general happiness, although genuine, does not apply to everyone. (shrink)
Ancient Rhodes reached a pinnacle of power in the early second century B.C. For twenty years—from Apamea to Pydna—her fleet was unrivalled in the Aegean and her mainland possessions encompassed most of Lycia and Caria. Ally and helpmate of Rome in the war on Antiochus III, Rhodes gained much profit from the association, in prestige and territorial acquisitions. But her heyday was brief, her fall swift and calamitous. After Pydna, Rhodes felt the heavy hand of Rome: she forfeited most of (...) her mainland holdings; her economy suffered ruinous setback; the island republic was humbled and humiliated. So dramatic a reversal of fortune demands explanation. (shrink)
Simple Heuristics That Make Us Smart invites readers to embark on a new journey into a land of rationality that differs from the familiar territory of cognitive science and economics. Traditional views of rationality tend to see decision makers as possessing superhuman powers of reason, limitless knowledge, and all of eternity in which to ponder choices. To understand decisions in the real world, we need a different, more psychologically plausible notion of rationality, and this book provides it. It is about (...) fast and frugal heuristics--simple rules for making decisions when time is pressing and deep thought an unaffordable luxury. These heuristics can enable both living organisms and artificial systems to make smart choices, classifications, and predictions by employing bounded rationality. But when and how can such fast and frugal heuristics work? Can judgments based simply on one good reason be as accurate as those based on many reasons? Could less knowledge even lead to systematically better predictions than more knowledge? Simple Heuristics explores these questions, developing computational models of heuristics and testing them through experiments and analyses. It shows how fast and frugal heuristics can produce adaptive decisions in situations as varied as choosing a mate, dividing resources among offspring, predicting high school drop out rates, and playing the stock market. As an interdisciplinary work that is both useful and engaging, this book will appeal to a wide audience. It is ideal for researchers in cognitive psychology, evolutionary psychology, and cognitive science, as well as in economics and artificial intelligence. It will also inspire anyone interested in simply making good decisions. (shrink)
The social, educational and political writings of Jean-Jacques Rousseau have become enormously influential in the 200 years since his death. But the breadth as well as the depth of Rousseau's achievement - he was amongst other things a creative writer and musical composer as well as a philosopher - is not always appreciated. In around 100 articles, alphabetically arranged and fully cross-referenced, N. J. H. Dent explores all facets of Rousseau's work and thoughts, while his subject's remarkable life is summarized (...) in a biographical introduction. Details of works by and about Rousseau are listed in an extensive bibliography. For students or general readers seeking an introduction to Rousseau's work, and for those already familiar with the material who require a convenient reference source, this dictionary is essential reading. (shrink)
Professor N. G. L. Hammond has of late published some of his thoughts on the activities of Philip II in 347 and 346 B.C. In addition he has treated aspects of Philip's earlier involvement in Thessalian, Thracian, and Phokian affairs. In the process he has in many instances disagreed with a number of current findings. Among those challenged are some of mine. Healthy scholarly debate is always desirable, and in this f spirit I should welcome an opportunity to contest Professor (...) Hammond's views on several points, the most important being the basic factor of methodology and the interpretation of various factual details. (shrink)
This pioneering study by Sister Prudence Allen traces the concept of woman in relation to man in more than seventy philosophers from ancient and medieval traditions. The fruit of ten years' work, this study uncovers four general categories of questions asked by philosophers for two thousand years. These are the categories of opposites, of generation, of wisdom, and of virtue. Sister Prudence Allen traces several recurring strands of sexual and gender identity within this period. Ultimately, she shows the paradoxical influence (...) of Aristotle on the question of woman and on a philosophical understanding of sexual coomplemenarity. Supplemented throughout with helpful charts, diagrams, and illustrations, this volume will be an important resource for scholars and students in the fields of women's studies, philosophy, history, theology, literary studies, and political science. (shrink)