This paper explores Matthew Lipman's notion of the philosophical text as model. I argue that Lipman's account of the philosophical text is one that brings together the expository and narrative textual forms in a distinctive way--not one in which the tension between the expository and the narrative is overcome once and for all, but in such a way that the expository and the narrative are brought into relationship within the very form of narrative itself. Drawing upon Michel Foucault's reading (...) of Descartes "Meditations," I argue that Lipman's philosophical novels serve both a demonstrative and ascetic function, allowing us to situate Lipman's novels in the history of philosophical discourse, as well as point to the task of creating philosophical texts, and curriculum, in the future. (shrink)
In this paper I provide an introduction to the special issue on the Philosophical Novel for Children by pointing to a lacuna in the theoretical field of philosophy for/with children, suggesting that the field is in need of more research on the philosophical novel given its status as the curricular centerpiece of Matthew Lipman’s vision of P4/WC. I describe the genesis of the idea for this special issue, emerging as it did first from a series of questions and experiences (...) which I encountered while working with Lipman’s philosophical novels as a P4/WC practitioner, then through a scholarly exploration of Lipman’s model theory of the philosophical novel for children, and culminating in the presentation of several of the papers published here at a special symposium on the philosophical novel for children at a meeting of the American Philosophical Association. I conclude with a preview of the papers in this special issue, highlighting several shared themes and concerns. (shrink)
In this paper I interpret Montaigne’s essay, “On Educating Children”, as a pedagogical text through its performance of a distinct epistolary function, one that addresses the letter-recipient for the purpose of shaping the ideas, actions, and beliefs of that individual. At the same time, I also read “On Educating Children” within the context of the wider project of Montaigne’s Essays, which, as I suggest, is an ethical-aesthetic project of self-fashioning and self-cultivation. The net result is an interpretation of teaching as (...) an ethical-aesthetic practice of the self, one that is in concert with the interpretation of Montaigne’s writing of the Essays as a similar practice of the self. In order to build this case, I employ Michel Foucault’s fourfold schema of ethical subjectivity, mapping that schema onto “On Educating Children”, so as to reveal a unique pedagogy of self-formation—a pedagogy that works as much upon the self of the teacher as it does the self of the student. (shrink)
This essay attempts to retrieve the notion of ‘common sense’ within the writings of Descartes and Montaigne. I suggest that both writers represent distinct traditions in which the notion is employed. Descartes represents a modernist tradition in which common sense is understood to be a cognitive faculty, while Montaigne represents a humanist tradition in which common sense is understood as a political virtue. I also suggest that both writers work with the notion as a way of responding to diversity in (...) the world. The paper concludes with a discussion of how the notion of common sense employed by Descartes and Montaigne emerges out of the scholastic tradition and the assertion that both writers are responding to the educational consequences of scholasticism. I also discuss how the reconstruction of Descartes in this paper can provide some ground for raising new questions about the Cartesian project and educational philosophy. Finally, I gesture toward the idea that the humanist tradition with its understanding of common sense as political virtue can provide benefit for contemporary responses to diversity. (shrink)
Two sixteenth-century manuscripts, Vat. 217 and 1338, each contain, as an appendix to the works of Sextus Empiricus, a small Sophistic treatise now usually referred to as the. The two appendices were first collated, it would seem, by Conrad Trieber, who planned to publish an edition of the treatise. He died, however, before the project was completed, and his notes passed into the possession of Wilamowitz, who allowed H. Mutschmann to consult them for purposes of writing his own article on (...) Sextus. (shrink)
Two sixteenth-century manuscripts, Vat. 217 and 1338, each contain, as an appendix to the works of Sextus Empiricus, a small Sophistic treatise now usually referred to as the . The two appendices were first collated, it would seem, by Conrad Trieber, who planned to publish an edition of the treatise. He died, however, before the project was completed, and his notes passed into the possession of Wilamowitz, who allowed H. Mutschmann to consult them for purposes of writing his own article (...) on Sextus. (shrink)
Bioethics has made remarkable progress as a scholarly and applied field. A mere fledgling in the 1960s, it is now firmly established in hospitals, medical schools, and government agencies and boasts a number of professional associations and a handsome collection of journals.
Artificial intelligence methods have a very wide range of applications. From speech recognition to self-driving cars, the development of modern deep-learning architectures is helping researchers to achieve new levels of accuracy in different fields. Although deep convolutional neural networks have reached or surpassed human-level performance in image recognition tasks, little has been done to transport this new image classification technology to geoscientific problems. We have developed what we believe to be the first use of CNNs to identify lithofacies in cores. (...) We use highly accurate models and transfer learning to classify images of cored carbonate rocks. We found that different modern CNN architectures can achieve high levels of lithologic image classification accuracy and can aid in the core description task. This core image classification technique has the potential to greatly standardize and accelerate the description process. We also provide the community with a new set of labeled data that can be used for further geologic/data science studies. (shrink)
Although many philosophers argue that making and revising moral decisions ought to be a matter of deliberating over reasons, the extent to which the consideration of reasons informs people’s moral decisions and prompts them to change their decisions remains unclear. Here, after making an initial decision in 2-option moral dilemmas, participants examined reasons for only the option initially chosen(affirming reasons), reasons for only the option not initially chosen (opposing reasons), or reasons for both options. Although participants were more likely to (...) change their initial decisions when presented with only opposing reasons compared with only affirming reasons, these effect sizes were consistently small. After evaluating reasons, participants were significantly more likely not to change their initial decisions than to change them, regardless of the set of reasons they considered. The initial decision accounted for most of the variance in predicting the final decision, whereas the reasons evaluated accounted for a relatively small proportion of the variance in predicting the final decision. This resistance to changing moral decisions is at least partly attributable to a biased, motivated evaluation of the available reasons: participants rated the reasons supporting their initial decisions more favorably than the reasons opposing their initial decisions, regardless of the reported strategy used to make the initial decision.Overall, our results suggest that the consideration of reasons rarely induces people to change their initial decisions in moral dilemmas. (shrink)
The neural reuse framework developed primarily by Michael Anderson proposes that brain regions are involved in multiple and diverse cognitive tasks and that brain regions flexibly and dynamically interact in different combinations to carry out cognitive functioning. We argue that the evidence cited by Anderson and others falls short of supporting the fundamental principles of neural reuse. We map out this problem and provide solutions by drawing on recent advances in network neuroscience, and we argue that methods employed in network (...) neuroscience provide the means to fully engage in a research program operating under the principles of neural reuse. (shrink)
People maintain a positive identity in at least two ways: They evaluate themselves more favorably than other people, and they judge themselves to be better now than they were in the past. Both strategies rely on autobiographical memories. The authors investigate the role of autobiographical memories of lying and emotional harm in maintaining a positive identity. For memories of lying to or emotionally harming others, participants judge their own actions as less morally wrong and less negative than those in which (...) other people lied to or emotionally harmed them. Furthermore, people judge those actions that happened further in the past to be more morally wrong than those that happened more recently. Finally, for periods of the past when they believed that they were very different people than they are now, participants judge their actions to be more morally wrong and more negative than those actions from periods of their pasts when they believed that they were very similar to who they are now. The authors discuss these findings in relation to theories about the function of autobiographical memory and moral cognition in constructing and perceiving the self over time. (shrink)
People seem more divided than ever before over social and political issues, entrenched in their existing beliefs and unwilling to change them. Empirical research on mechanisms driving this resistance to belief change has focused on a limited set of well-known, charged, contentious issues and has not accounted for deliberation over reasons and arguments in belief formation prior to experimental sessions. With a large, heterogeneous sample (N = 3,001), we attempt to overcome these existing problems, and we investigate the causes and (...) consequences of resistance to belief change for five diverse and less contentious socio-political issues. After participants chose initially to support or oppose a given socio-political position, they were provided with reasons favoring their chosen position (affirming reasons), reasons favoring the other, unchosen position (conflicting reasons), or all reasons for both positions (reasons for both sides). Our results indicate that participants are more likely to stick with their initial decisions than to change them no matter which reasons are considered, and that this resistance to belief change is likely due to a motivated, biased evaluation of the reasons to support their initial beliefs (prior-belief bias). More specifically, they rated affirming reasons more favorably than conflicting reasons—even after accounting for reported prior knowledge about the issue, the novelty of the reasons presented, and the reported strategy used to make the initial decision. In many cases, participants who did not change their positions tended to become more confident in the superiority of their positions after considering many reasons for both sides. (shrink)
The phrase ‘person‐centred care’ (PCC) reminds us that the fundamental philosophical goal of caring for people is to uphold or promote their personhood. However, such an idea has translated into promoting individualist notions of autonomy, empowerment and personal responsibility in the context of consumerism and neoliberalism, which is problematic both conceptually and practically. From a conceptual standpoint, it ignores the fact that humans are social, historical and biographical beings, and instead assumes an essentialist or idealized concept of personhood in which (...) a person is viewed as an individual static object. From a practical standpoint, the application of such a concept of personhood can lead to neglect of a person's fundamental care needs and exacerbate the problems of social inequity, in particular for older people and people with dementia. Therefore, we argue that our understanding of PCC must instead be based on a dynamic concept of personhood that integrates the relevant social, relational, temporal and biographical dimensions. We propose that the correct concept of personhood in PCC is one in which persons are understood as socially embedded, relational and temporally extended subjects rather than merely individual, autonomous, asocial and atemporal objects. We then present a reconceptualization of the fundamental philosophical goal of PCC as promoting selfhood rather than personhood. Such a reconceptualization avoids the problems that beset the concept of personhood and its application in PCC, while also providing a philosophical foundation for the growing body of empirical literature that emphasizes the psychosocial, relational, subjective and biographical dimensions of PCC. (shrink)
Counterfactual thinking involves imagining hypothetical alternatives to reality. Philosopher David Lewis argued that people estimate the subjective plausibility that a counterfactual event might have occurred by comparing an imagined possible world in which the counterfactual statement is true against the current, actual world in which the counterfactual statement is false. Accordingly, counterfactuals considered to be true in possible worlds comparatively more similar to ours are judged as more plausible than counterfactuals deemed true in possible worlds comparatively less similar. Although Lewis (...) did not originally develop his notion of comparative similarity to be investigated as a psychological construct, this study builds upon his idea to empirically investigate comparative similarity as a possible psychological strategy for evaluating the perceived plausibility of counterfactual events. More specifically, we evaluate judgments of comparative similarity between episodic memories and episodic counterfactual events as a factor influencing people's judgments of plausibility in counterfactual simulations, and we also compare it against other factors thought to influence judgments of counterfactual plausibility, such as ease of simulation and prior simulation. Our results suggest that the greater the perceived similarity between the original memory and the episodic counterfactual event, the greater the perceived plausibility that the counterfactual event might have occurred. While similarity between actual and counterfactual events, ease of imagining, and prior simulation of the counterfactual event were all significantly related to counterfactual plausibility, comparative similarity best captured the variance in ratings of counterfactual plausibility. Implications for existing theories on the determinants of counterfactual plausibility are discussed. (shrink)
People frequently entertain counterfactual thoughts, or mental simulations about alternative ways the world could have been. But the perceived plausibility of those counterfactual thoughts varies widely. The current article interfaces research in the philosophy and semantics of counterfactual statements with the psychology of mental simulations, and it explores the role of perceived similarity in judgments of counterfactual plausibility. We report results from seven studies (N = 6405) jointly supporting three interconnected claims. First, the perceived plausibility of a counterfactual event is (...) predicted by the perceived similarity between the possible world in which the imagined situation is thought to occur and the actual world. Second, when people attend to differences between imagined possible worlds and the actual world, they think of the imagined possible worlds as less similar to the actual world and tend to judge counterfactuals in such worlds as less plausible. Lastly, when people attend to what is identical between imagined possible worlds and the actual world, they think of the imagined possible worlds as more similar to the actual world and tend to judge counterfactuals in such worlds as more plausible. We discuss these results in light of philosophical, semantic, and psychological theories of counterfactual thinking. (shrink)
Throughout the English-speaking world, and in the many other countries where analytic philosophy is studied, Hillel Steiner is esteemed as one of the foremost contemporary political philosophers. This volume is designed as a festschrift for Steiner and as an important collection of philosophical essays in its own right. The editors have assembled a roster of highly distinguished international contributors, all of whom are eager to pay tribute to Steiner by focusing on topics on which he himself has concentrated. Some of (...) the contributors engage directly with Steiner's work, whereas others focus not directly on his writings but instead grapple with issues that have figured prominently therein. Each essay seeks to advance the debates in which Steiner himself has so notably participated. The study concludes with a response by Steiner himself. (shrink)
Technical results about the time dependence of eigenvectors of reduced density operators are considered, and the relevance of these results is discussed for modal interpretations of quantum mechanics which take the corresponding eigenprojections to represent deﬁnite properties. Continuous eigenvectors can be found if degeneracies are avoided. We show that, in ﬁnite dimensions, the space of degenerate operators has co-dimension 3 in the space of all reduced operators, suggesting that continuous eigenvectors almost surely exist. In any dimension, even when degeneracies are (...) hit, we ﬁnd conditions under which a theorem due to Rellich can provide continuous eigenvectors. We use this result to formulate an extended version of the modal interpretation. We also discuss eigenvector instability which we argue poses a serious problem for the modal interpretation, even in our extended version. Many examples are given to illustrate the mathematics. (shrink)
We investigate some basic descriptive set theory for countably based completely quasi-metrizable topological spaces, which we refer to as quasi-Polish spaces. These spaces naturally generalize much of the classical descriptive set theory of Polish spaces to the non-Hausdorff setting. We show that a subspace of a quasi-Polish space is quasi-Polish if and only if it is Π20 source in the Borel hierarchy. Quasi-Polish spaces can be characterized within the framework of Type-2 Theory of Effectivity as precisely the countably based spaces (...) that have an admissible representation with a Polish domain. They can also be characterized domain theoretically as precisely the spaces that are homeomorphic to the subspace of all non-compact elements of an ω-continuous domain. Every countably based locally compact sober space is quasi-Polish, hence every ω-continuous domain is quasi-Polish. A metrizable space is quasi-Polish if and only if it is Polish. We show that the Borel hierarchy on an uncountable quasi-Polish space does not collapse, and that the Hausdorff–Kuratowski theorem generalizes to all quasi-Polish spaces. (shrink)
The present text attempts to introduce readers to the fundamental philosophical and pedagogical values promoted by Matthew Lipman, the author who laid the basis for the philosophy for children movement. It analyzes several theoretical and applied texts written by Lipman, in an attempt to explain Lipman’s goals, his views on education, and the way in which his „community of inquiry” manages to transform the classroom into a space of freedom, creativity and thinking.
This volume has 41 chapters written to honor the 100th birthday of Mario Bunge. It celebrates the work of this influential Argentine/Canadian physicist and philosopher. Contributions show the value of Bunge’s science-informed philosophy and his systematic approach to philosophical problems. The chapters explore the exceptionally wide spectrum of Bunge’s contributions to: metaphysics, methodology and philosophy of science, philosophy of mathematics, philosophy of physics, philosophy of psychology, philosophy of social science, philosophy of biology, philosophy of technology, moral philosophy, social and political (...) philosophy, medical philosophy, and education. The contributors include scholars from 16 countries. Bunge combines ontological realism with epistemological fallibilism. He believes that science provides the best and most warranted knowledge of the natural and social world, and that such knowledge is the only sound basis for moral decision making and social and political reform. Bunge argues for the unity of knowledge. In his eyes, science and philosophy constitute a fruitful and necessary partnership. Readers will discover the wisdom of this approach and will gain insight into the utility of cross-disciplinary scholarship. This anthology will appeal to researchers, students, and teachers in philosophy of science, social science, and liberal education programmes. 1. Introduction Section I. An Academic Vocation Section II. Philosophy Section III. Physics and Philosophy of Physics Section IV. Cognitive Science and Philosophy of Mind Section V. Sociology and Social Theory Section VI. Ethics and Political Philosophy Section VII. Biology and Philosophy of Biology Section VIII. Mathematics Section IX. Education Section X. Varia Section XI. Bibliography. (shrink)
A number of influential biologists are currently pursuing efforts to restore previously extinct species. But for decades, philosophers of biology have regarded “de-extinction” as conceptually incoherent. Once a species is gone, it is gone forever. We argue that a range of metaphysical, biological, and ethical grounds for opposing de-extinction are at best inconclusive and that a pragmatic stance that allows for its possibility is more appealing.
Kant famously characterizes our human understanding as a “spontaneous” faculty, but what can this mean? I criticize some recent interpretations of Kant’s claim and suggest that we can only understand what Kant means by “the spontaneity of understanding” if we recognize certain basic differences between how Kant conceived of cognition and how philosophers commonly think of it today. I go on to argue that Kant’s conception of cognition represents an appealing alternative to the unsatisfying options that contemporary ways of thinking (...) seem to force on us. (shrink)
El presente trabajo investiga las tesis sobre el poder civil de Alonso de la Veracruz que buscan incorporar en la comunidad política española a los habitantes autóctonos del Nuevo Mundo, tesis que suelen relacionarse con F. de Vitoria y el tomismo español, y que últimamente son consideradas parte del republicanismo novohispano elaborado desde la periferia americana. Se busca demostrar que su propósito era aplicar una teoría de derechos naturales, sin que ello implique participación política de los indios americanos. Se analiza (...) la postura del fraile frente a la diversidad cultural y la guerra contra los indios. The paper explores Alonso de la Veracruz's theses on civil power, which sought to integrate the native inhabitants of the New World into the Spanish political community. These theses, which have usually been associated with F. de Vitoria and Spanish Thomism, have recently come to be considered part of a Novohispanic republicanism developed in the American periphery. The article seeks to show that the purpose of such theses was to apply a theory of natural rights that did not entail the political participation of the indigenous population, as well as to analyze Veracruz's position regarding cultural diversity and the war against the indigenous peoples. (shrink)
Having positive moral traits is central to one’s sense of self, and people generally are motivated to maintain a positive view of the self in the present. But it remains unclear how people foster a positive, morally good view of the self in the present. We suggest that recollecting and reflecting on moral and immoral actions from the personal past jointly help to construct a morally good view of the current self in complementary ways. More specifically, across four studies we (...) investigated the extent to which people believe they have changed over time after recollecting their own moral or immoral behaviors from the personal past. Our results indicate that recollecting past immoral actions is associated with stronger impressions of dissimilarity and change in the sense of self over time than recollecting past moral actions. These effects held for diverse domains of morality (i.e., honesty/dishonesty, helping/harming, fairness/unfairness, and loyalty/disloyalty), and they remained even after accounting for objective, calendar time. Further supporting a motivational explanation, these effects held when people recollected their own past actions but not when they recollected the actions of other people. (shrink)
A 47-year-old woman with a history of anxiety disorder is admitted to the hospital for shortness of breath. On the third day of hospitalization, she asks her physician for a copy of all documents pertaining to her care. What expectation should she have for full disclosure? Are there limits on her access to her medical records and do her physician's concerns about professional privilege matter?The virtues of transparency in medicine have been well described. As proponents of transparency, we favor patient (...) access to their medical records, but we are increasingly troubled by the ease and extent of disclosure in current practice as technology advances and... (shrink)
Normative ethical theories and religious traditions offer general moral principles for people to follow. These moral principles are typically meant to be fixed and rigid, offering reliable guides for moral judgment and decision-making. In two preregistered studies, we found consistent evidence that agreement with general moral principles shifted depending upon events recently accessed in memory. After recalling their own personal violations of moral principles, participants agreed less strongly with those very principles—relative to participants who recalled events in which other people (...) violated the principles. This shift in agreement was explained, in part, by people’s willingness to excuse their own moral transgressions, but not the transgressions of others. These results have important implications for understanding the roles memory and personal identity in moral judgment. People’s commitment to moral principles may be maintained when they recall others’ past violations, but their commitment may wane when they recall their own violations. (shrink)
At the beginning of 2020, COVID-19 became a global problem. Despite all the efforts to emphasize the relevance of preventive measures, not everyone adhered to them. Thus, learning more about the characteristics determining attitudinal and behavioral responses to the pandemic is crucial to improving future interventions. In this study, we applied machine learning on the multi-national data collected by the International Collaboration on the Social and Moral Psychology of COVID-19 (N = 51,404) to test the predictive efficacy of constructs from (...) social, moral, cognitive, and personality psychology, as well as socio-demographic factors, in the attitudinal and behavioral responses to the pandemic. The results point to several valuable insights. Internalized moral identity provided the most consistent predictive contribution—individuals perceiving moral traits as central to their self-concept reported higher adherence to preventive measures. Similar was found for morality as cooperation, symbolized moral identity, self-control, open-mindedness, collective narcissism, while the inverse relationship was evident for the endorsement of conspiracy theories. However, we also found a non-negligible variability in the explained variance and predictive contributions with respect to macro-level factors such as the pandemic stage or cultural region. Overall, the results underscore the importance of morality-related and contextual factors in understanding adherence to public health recommendations during the pandemic. (shrink)
Catholic theologians after Trent saw the Protestant teaching about the remnants of original sin in the justified as one of the ‘chief ’ errors of Protestant soteriology. Martin Luther, John Calvin, Martin Chemnitz, and many Protestant theologians believed that a view of concupiscence as sinful, strictly speaking, did away with any reliance on good works. This conviction also clarified the Christian’s dependence on the imputed righteousness of Christ. Catholic theologians condemned this position as detracting from the work of Christ who (...) takes away the sins of the world. The rejection of this teaching—and the affirmation of Trent’s statement that original sin is taken away and that the justified at baptism is without stain or ‘immaculate’ before God—is essential for understanding Catholic opposition to Protestant soteriology. Two Spanish Dominican Thomists, Domingo de Soto and Bartolomé de Medina, rejected the Protestant teaching on imputation in part because of its connection with the view on the remnants of original sin in the justified. Adrian and Peter van Walenburch, brothers who served as auxiliary bishops of Cologne in the second half of the seventeenth century, argued that the Protestants of their time now agreed with the Catholic Church on a number of soteriological points. They also drew upon some of their post–Tridentine predecessors to offer a Catholic account of the imputation of Christ’s righteousness. Nonetheless, the issue of sin in the justified remained a point of serious controversy. (shrink)
Designer Biology: The Ethics of Intensively Engineering Biological and Ecological Systems consists of thirteen chapters that address the ethical issues raised by technological intervention and design across a broad range of biological and ecological systems. Among the technologies addressed are geoengineering, human enhancement, sex selection, genetic modification, and synthetic biology.