New prospects for mankind in searching for and developing new sources of energy, arms race, overcrowding and ecological crises present the human with a serious choice. The choice may relate to the further existence of people on Earth. In the context of most challenging political, economic and social crises, the tandem of natural and human sciences produces unexpected results, despite the crises accompanying these processes. This article presents a model of the society and a model of the human in the (...) systemic parametrical aspect. The human is considered as part of the “society” system. The research suggests applying the systems parametric method developed by Prof. A. Uyemov in the 1960s. Humanity creates increasingly frequent bifurcation conditions for human life. As an adaptive mechanism, the human has to develop survival strategies and well-being strategies. The paper presents some aspects of the adaptive mechanisms of the 21st century man. It also considers some threats arising out of environmental variability. Cyborgization is one of such threats. The research includes dual system modelling of the “society” system based on the complementarity principle. It shows that there are two definitions which have different concepts, structures and substrates but constitute the entirety of the object of interest. (shrink)
Starting from the idea that functions are formally similar to actions in that they are described and explained in a similar way, so that both admit of an accordion effect, I turn to Anscombe’s insight that the point of practical reasoning is to render explicit the relation between the different descriptions of an action generated by the accordion effect. The upshot is, roughly, that an item has a function if what it does can be accounted for by functional reasoning. Put (...) differently, a part of a system has a function if what it does is a functional part of what the system does. (shrink)
Boris Kment takes a new approach to the study of modality that emphasises the origin of modal notions in everyday thought. He argues that the concepts of necessity and possibility originate in counterfactual reasoning, which allows us to investigate explanatory connections. Contrary to accepted views, explanation is more fundamental than modality.
In a wide-ranging 2007 study of Claude Lévi-Strauss's aesthetic thought, Boris Wiseman demonstrates not only its centrality within his oeuvre but also the importance of Levi-Strauss for contemporary aesthetic enquiry. Reconstructing the internal logic of Lévi-Strauss's thinking on aesthetics, and showing how anthropological and aesthetic ideas intertwine at the most elemental levels in the elaboration of his system of thought, Wiseman demonstrates that Lévi-Strauss's aesthetic theory forms an integral part of his approach to Amerindian masks, body decoration and mythology. He (...) reveals the significance of Lévi-Strauss's anthropological analysis of an 'untamed' mode of thinking at work in totemism, classification and myth-making for his conception of art and aesthetic experience. In this way, structural anthropology is shown to lead to ethnoaesthetics. Lévi-Strauss, Anthropology and Aesthetics adopts a broad-ranging approach that combines the different perspectives of anthropology, philosophy, aesthetic theory and literary criticism into an unusual and imaginative whole. (shrink)
I propose a general alethic theory of epistemic risk according to which the riskiness of an agent’s credence function encodes her relative sensitivity to different types of graded error. After motivating and mathematically developing this approach, I show that the epistemic risk function is a scaled reflection of expected inaccuracy. This duality between risk and information enables us to explore the relationship between attitudes to epistemic risk, the choice of scoring rules in epistemic utility theory, and the selection of priors (...) in Bayesian epistemology more generally. (shrink)
We construct and study structures imitating the field of complex numbers with exponentiation. We give a natural, albeit non first-order, axiomatisation for the corresponding class of structures and prove that the class has a unique model in every uncountable cardinality. This gives grounds to conjecture that the unique model of cardinality continuum is isomorphic to the field of complex numbers with exponentiation.
Approximate coherentism suggests that imperfectly rational agents should hold approximately coherent credences. This norm is intended as a generalization of ordinary coherence. I argue that it may be unable to play this role by considering its application under learning experiences. While it is unclear how imperfect agents should revise their beliefs, I suggest a plausible route is through Bayesian updating. However, Bayesian updating can take an incoherent agent from relatively more coherent credences to relatively less coherent credences, depending on the (...) data observed. Thus, comparative rationality judgments among incoherent agents are unduly sensitive to luck. (shrink)
Analysing several characteristic mathematical models: natural and real numbers, Euclidean geometry, group theory, and set theory, I argue that a mathematical model in its final form is a junction of a set of axioms and an internal partial interpretation of the corresponding language. It follows from the analysis that (i) mathematical objects do not exist in the external world: they are our internally imagined objects, some of which, at least approximately, we can realize or represent; (ii) mathematical truths are not (...) truths about the external world but specifications (formulations) of mathematical conceptions; (iii) mathematics is first and foremost our imagined tool by which, with certain assumptions about its applicability, we explore nature and synthesize our rational cognition of it. (shrink)
If definitive evidence concerning treatment effectiveness becomes available from an ongoing randomized clinical trial, then the trial could be stopped early, with the public release of results benefiting current and future patients. However, stopping an ongoing trial based on accruing outcome data requires methodological rigor to preserve validity of the trial conclusions. This has led to the use of formal interim monitoring procedures, which include inefficacy monitoring that will stop a trial early when the experimental treatment appears not to be (...) working. For participants, inefficacy monitoring is especially important as it ensures that they are not being treated worse than if they had not enrolled on the trial. We discuss the importance of reporting with trial results the formal interim inefficacy monitoring guidelines that were utilized, and, if none were used, the reasons for their absence. A survey of two leading medical journals suggests that this is not current practice. (shrink)
We further investigate a divisibility relation on the set of BN ultrafilters on the set of natural numbers. We single out prime ultrafilters (divisible only by 1 and themselves) and establish a hierarchy in which a position of every ultrafilter depends on the set of prime ultrafilters it is divisible by. We also construct ultrafilters with many immediate successors in this hierarchy and find positions of products of ultrafilters.
This is the first in a series of math books intended for those who have completed at least secondary school mathematics and have acquired 1) certain calculating skills, and 2) dissatisfaction with their understanding of what they are calculating. We will start our journey with numbers. Numbers are the oldest mathematical idea, but still also the most important one. We will go through the basics of numbers in a way that will give you the confidence to really understand numbers and (...) really know how to apply them. You will also learn all the essential elements of mathematics through the example of the world of numbers. The example of numbers will be used to illustrate what mathematical objects are and how they are applied, and what mathematical tools we use in their description and application. (shrink)
In the Theaetetus Socrates provides an elaboration and discussion of Protagoras’ measure doctrine, grounding it in a “secret doctrine” of flux. This paper argues that the anthropology of the myth in the Protagoras provides an earlier, very different way to explain the measure doctrine, focusing on its application to civic values, such as “just,” “fine,” and “pious.” The paper shows that Protagoras’ explanation of the dual etiology of virtue – that it is acquired both by nature and by nurture – (...) tracks the two meanings of “anthropos” in his formulation of the measure doctrine, as “humankind” and “individual human.” On Protagoras’ account, humankind’s survival can be explained by the fact that humans share shame and justice, which enables them to live together in cities. (shrink)
In this article we reveal the common conditions of modern social philosphy, which theoretical discourse is subordinated to critical discourse, as distinguished from the canonical I. Kant’s, G. Hegel’s, M. Heidegger’s, M. Sheller’s J.-P. Sartre’s philosophical theories, which are bonded with the development of positivist epistemological, historical, ontological or anthropological presuppositions. We will talk about tree main conditions: 1) decline of theological definition of subject, 2) mechanism of repetition, 3) interdisciplinarity. In the first case, we will discuss transition from subject (...) definition through the God to his definition through the figure of Other, which allows philosophers as Schopenhauer, Nietzsche or Sheller expose metaphysics with consistent methodological criticism. In the second case, we will talk about forming of critical discourse establishing itself as the extended analog of psychoanalytical revealing of unconsciousness content. In the third case, we will examine interdisciplinary approach, assuming combination of different methods possible to increase this criticism and put empirical borders of its theoretical presuppositions. (shrink)
In this paper, we reflect on the connection between the notions of organism and organisation, with a specific interest in how this bears upon the issue of the reality of the organism. We do this by presenting the case of Buffon, who developed complex views about the relation between the notions of “organised” and “organic” matter. We argue that, contrary to what some interpreters have suggested, these notions are not orthogonal in his thought. Also, we argue that Buffon has a (...) view in which organisation is not just ubiquitous, but basic and fundamental in nature, and hence also fully natural. We suggest that he can hold this view because of his anti-mathematicism. Buffon’s case is interesting, in our view, because he can regard organisation, and organisms, as perfectly natural, and can admit their reality without invoking problematic supernaturalist views, and because he allows organisation and the organismal to come in kinds and degrees. Thus, his view tries to do justice to two cautionary notes for the debate on the reality of the organism: the need for a commitment to a broadly naturalist perspective, and the need to acknowledge the interesting features of organisms through which we make sense of them. (shrink)
Businesses that rely heavily on cash transactions have been found to be particularly susceptible to low tax ethics. Recent research indicates that cash is a highly powerful and tempting reward, which elicits a strong emotional response. In this article, we investigate how emotions affect tax ethics in a series of experimental studies. Specifically, we show that affective priming and the ease with which tax information is retrieved moderate tax ethics. We also show that the relative effectiveness of deterrence, such as (...) audit probabilities and tax fines, is moderated by affect. These results point toward a complex picture of tax ethics, requiring a multifaceted policy approach that emphasizes not only enforcement, but also cognitive and affective aspects of human behavior. (shrink)
On the received view, counterfactuals are analysed using the concept of closeness between possible worlds: the counterfactual 'If it had been the case that p, then it would have been the case that q' is true at a world w just in case q is true at all the possible p-worlds closest to w. The degree of closeness between two worlds is usually thought to be determined by weighting different respects of similarity between them. The question I consider in the (...) paper is which weights attach to different respects of similarity. I start by considering Lewis's answer to the question and argue against it by presenting several counterexamples. I use the same examples to motivate a general principle about closeness: if a fact obtains in both of two worlds, then this similarity is relevant to the closeness between them if and only if the fact has the same explanation in the two worlds. I use this principle and some ideas of Lewis's to formulate a general account of counterfactuals, and I argue that this account can explain the asymmetry of counterfactual dependence. The paper concludes with a discussion of some examples that cannot be accommodated by the present version of the account and therefore necessitate further work on the details. (shrink)
In this article, logical concepts are defined using the internal syntactic and semantic structure of language. For a first-order language, it has been shown that its logical constants are connectives and a certain type of quantifiers for which the universal and existential quantifiers form a functionally complete set of quantifiers. Neither equality nor cardinal quantifiers belong to the logical constants of a first-order language.
During the last quarter of a century, a number of philosophers have become attracted to the idea that necessity can be analyzed in terms of a hyperintensional notion of essence. One challenge for proponents of this view is to give a plausible explanation of our modal knowledge. The goal of this paper is to develop a strategy for meeting this challenge. My approach rests on an account of modality that I developed in previous work, and which analyzes modal properties in (...) terms of the notion of a metaphysical law. I discuss what information about the metaphysical laws is required for modal knowledge. Moreover, I describe two ways in which we might be able to acquire this information. The first way employs inference to the best explanation. The metaphysical laws, including the essential truths, play a crucial role in causal and grounding explanations and we can gain knowledge of these laws by abductive inferences from facts of which we have perceptual or a priori knowledge. The second way of gaining information about the metaphysical laws rests on knowledge that is partly constitutive of competence with the concepts that are needed to express the relevant information. Finally, I consider how knowledge of the metaphysical laws can be used to establish modal claims, paying special attention to the much-discussed connection between conceiving and possibility. (shrink)
I will argue that Aristotle’s fourfold division of four causes naturally arises from a combination of two distinctions (a) between things and changes, and (b) between that which potentially is something and what it potentially is. Within this scheme, what is usually called the “efficient cause” is something that potentially is a certain natural change, and the “final cause” is, at least in a basic sense, what the efficient cause potentially is. I will further argue that the essences of things (...) and changes are not features or attributes of them, but paradigms that set the standards according to which these things and changes may be judged to be natural or typical. The “formal cause” of a natural thing will be shown to be its essence in this sense: it sets the standards of typicality that apply to instances of its kind. The final cause will be shown to set the standard of typicality for natural changes. When we understand Aristotle’s doctrine of the four causes in this way, it becomes clear on what basis he could convincingly argue that final causality is operative in the whole of nature. (shrink)
This paper analyzes the historical context and systematic importance of Kant's hypothetical use of reason. It does so by investigating the role of hypotheses in Kant's philosophy of science. We first situate Kant’s account of hypotheses in the context of eighteenth-century German philosophy of science, focusing on the works of Wolff, Meier, and Crusius. We contrast different conceptions of hypotheses of these authors and elucidate the different theories of probability informing them. We then adopt a more systematic perspective to discuss (...) Kant's idea that scientific hypotheses must articulate real possibilities. We argue that Kant's views on the intelligibility of scientific hypotheses constitute a valuable perspective on scientific understanding and the constraints it imposes on scientific rationality. (shrink)
The bibliography provides a list of Boris Uspenskij’s publications in English, including works written in co-authorship and various reprints/reissues. For the most part, Uspenskij’s publications in English are translations of his books and articles originally written in Russian and previously published in the Soviet Union/Russia. The first English-language publication of his work, the monograph Principles of Structural Typology appeared in 1968; the current bibliography consists of 65 entries from a period spanning from 1968 till today.
The concept of inertial frame of reference is analysed. It has been shown that this fundamental concept of physics is not clear enough. A definition of inertial frame of reference is proposed which expresses its key inherent property. The definition is operational and powerful. Many other properties of inertial frames follow from the definition or it makes them plausible. In particular, the definition shows why physical laws obey space and time symmetries and the principle of relativity, it resolves the problem (...) of clock synchronization and the role of light in it, as well as the problem of the geometry of inertial frames. (shrink)
Antihaecceitists believe that all facts about specific individuals—such as the fact that Fred exists, or that Katie is tall—globally supervene on purely qualitative facts. Haecceitists deny that. The issue is not only of interest in itself, but receives additional importance from its intimate connection to the question of whether all fundamental facts are qualitative or whether they include facts about which specific individuals there are and how qualitative properties and relations are distributed over them. Those who think that all fundamental (...) facts are qualitative are arguably committed to antihaecceitism. The goal of this paper is to point out some problems for antihaecceitism (and therefore for the thesis that all fundamental facts are qualitative). The article focuses on two common assumptions about possible worlds: (i) Sets of possible worlds are the bearers of objective physical chance. (ii) Counterfactual conditionals can be defined by appeal to a relation of closeness between possible worlds. The essay tries to show that absurd consequences ensue if either of these assumptions is combined with antihaecceitism. Then it considers a natural response by the antihaecceitist, which is to deny that worlds play the role described in (i) and (ii). Instead, the reply continues, we can introduce a new set of entities that are defined in terms of worlds and that behave the way worlds do on the haecceitist position. That allows the antihaecceitist to formulate antihaecceitist friendly versions of (i) and (ii) by replacing the appeal to possible worlds with reference to the newly introduced entities. This maneuver invites an obvious reply, however. If the new entities are the things that play the role we typically associate with worlds, as partially described by (i) and (ii), then it is natural to conclude that they really are the entities we talk about when we speak of worlds, so that haecceitism is true after all. (shrink)
Drawing from cognitive learning theories we hypothesize that exposure to nationalistic appeals that suggest consumers should shun foreign brands for moral reasons increases the general belief in consumers that buying foreign brands is morally wrong. In parallel, drawing from the theory of psychological reactance we posit that such appeals may, against their communication goal, increase the reputation of foreign luxury brands. We term the juxtaposition of these apparently contradictory effects the “Ambivalence Hypothesis.” Further, drawing from prior research on source-similarity effects (...) we posit that foreign luxury brands that communicate cultural proximity to target consumers reinforce psychological reactance. We test these hypotheses experimentally in the context of luxury car brand advertising in China, a market that is heavily dominated by foreign brands, and therefore provides a breeding ground for ambivalent consumer reactions. Results show that exposure to nationalistic appeals enhances consumers’ national identity dispositions, which results in higher levels of consumer ethnocentrism. Further, nationalistic appeals enhance the social responsibility associations that consumers hold for foreign luxury brands and their countries of origin, which results in a higher brand reputation. Finally, effects of nationalistic appeals on foreign luxury brand reputation are positively stronger for brands using a local vs. a foreign or a global positioning. These findings suggest that nationalistic appeals are a double-edged sword with important implications for ethics in political communication and luxury brand marketing. (shrink)
In this paper, I make a contribution to a naturalistically-minded theory of truthmakers by proposing a solution to the nasty problem of truthmakers for negative truths. After formulating the difficulty, I consider and reject a number of solutions to the problem, including Armstrong's states of affairs of totality, incompatibility accounts, and JC Beall 's polarity view. I then defend the position that absences of truthmakers are real and are responsible for making negative truths true. According to the positive account of (...) absences I offer, absences of contingent states of affairs are causally relevant mind-independent features of the physical world, located within space and time, and capable of being discovered by scientific inquiry. Recognition of the reality of absences strengthens truthmaker theory as a naturalistic metaphysics, as truth and falsity of each and every contingent proposition finds an ontological grounding in some region of the physical universe. (shrink)