To many it seems obvious that any reduction of the nature of man to purely physical components involves an indirect attack on the doctrine of human immortality. To so reduce human nature, it may be argued, is to eliminate the soul and it is this essential component of man, rather than his body, which is the foundation of his immortality. This seems to me an altogether mistaken notion. My purpose in this paper, therefore, is to clarify the relation of physicalism (...) and immortality and thereby to reveal the error in this alleged incompatibility. (shrink)
Criticized as a nostalgic anachronism by those who oppose her version of political theory and lauded as symbol of direct democratic participation by those who favor it, the Athenian polis features prominently in Hannah Arendt's account of politics. This essay traces the origin and development of Arendt's conception of the polis as a space of appearance from the early 1950s onward. It makes particular use of the Denktagebuch, Arendt's intellectual diary, in order to shed new light on the historicity of (...) one of her central concepts. The article contends that both critics and partisans of Arendt's use of the polis have made the same mistake: they have presumed that the polis represents a space of face-to-face immediacy. In fact, Arendt compared the polis to a series of analogues, many of which are not centered on direct exchanges between political actors and spectators. As a result, Arendt's early work on the polis turns out to anticipate many of the concerns of her later work on judgment, and her theory of the polis becomes a theory of topics. (shrink)
"Legend is overdue for replacement, and an adequate replacement must attend to the process of science as carefully as Hull has done. I share his vision of a serious account of the social and intellectual dynamics of science that will avoid both the rosy blur of Legend and the facile charms of relativism.... Because of [Hull's] deep concern with the ways in which research is actually done, Science as a Process begins an important project in the study of science. It (...) is one of a distinguished series of books, which Hull himself edits."—Philip Kitcher, Nature "In Science as a Process, [David Hull] argues that the tension between cooperation and competition is exactly what makes science so successful.... Hull takes an unusual approach to his subject. He applies the rules of evolution in nature to the evolution of science, arguing that the same kinds of forces responsible for shaping the rise and demise of species also act on the development of scientific ideas."—Natalie Angier, New York Times Book Review "By far the most professional and thorough case in favour of an evolutionary philosophy of science ever to have been made. It contains excellent short histories of evolutionary biology and of systematics (the science of classifying living things); an important and original account of modern systematic controversy; a counter-attack against the philosophical critics of evolutionary philosophy; social-psychological evidence, collected by Hull himself, to show that science does have the character demanded by his philosophy; and a philosophical analysis of evolution which is general enough to apply to both biological and historical change."—Mark Ridley, Times Literary Supplement "Hull is primarily interested in how social interactions within the scientific community can help or hinder the process by which new theories and techniques get accepted.... The claim that science is a process for selecting out the best new ideas is not a new one, but Hull tells us exactly how scientists go about it, and he is prepared to accept that at least to some extent, the social activities of the scientists promoting a new idea can affect its chances of being accepted."—Peter J. Bowler, Archives of Natural History "I have been doing philosophy of science now for twenty-five years, and whilst I would never have claimed that I knew everything, I felt that I had a really good handle on the nature of science, Again and again, Hull was able to show me just how incomplete my understanding was.... Moreover, [Science as a Process] is one of the most compulsively readable books that I have ever encountered."—Michael Ruse, Biology and Philosophy. (shrink)
Drawing on work of the past decade, this volume brings together articles from the philosophy, history, and sociology of science, and many other branches of the biological sciences. The volume delves into the latest theoretical controversies as well as burning questions of contemporary social importance. The issues considered include the nature of evolutionary theory, biology and ethics, the challenge from religion, and the social implications of biology today (in particular the Human Genome Project).
“Hildebrand has constructed a well-paced and historically informative evaluation of neopragmatism. . . . This book makes an excellent companion for courses in both contemporary epistemology and American philosophy.” –Choice How faithful are the Neopragmatists' reformulations of Classical Pragmatism? Can their Neopragmatisms work? In examining the difficulties in Neopragmatism, David L. Hildebrand is able to propose some distinct directions for Pragmatism.
Background: In the present study, we aimed to better investigate attention system profile of Parkinson's disease-Mild Cognitive Impairment patients and to determine if specific attentional deficits are associated with 123I-FP-CIT SPECT.Methods: A total of 44 de novo drug-naïve PD patients [ with normal cognition and 17 with MCI ], 23 MCI patients and 23 individuals with subjective cognitive impairment were recruited at the Clinical Neurology Unit of Santa Chiara hospital. They were assessed by a wide neuropsychological battery, including Visual Search (...) Test measuring selective attention. Performances among groups were compared by non-parametric tests. Further, Spearman's rank correlations were performed to explore the association between neuropsychological variables and 123I-FP-CIT SPECT data in PD subgroup.Results: PD-MCI patients performed worse on VST than patients with PD-NC, patients with MCI and individuals with SCI. The performance of PD-MCI patients on VST significantly correlated with caudate nucleus 123I-FP-CIT SPECT uptake, whereas a negative correlation between such test and 123I-FP-CIT SPECT uptake in the left putamen was found in PD-NC patients.Conclusions: We suggest that selective attention deficit might be a trigger of cognitive decay in de novo PD-MCI patients. The VST should be routinely used to detect attentional deficits in hospital clinical practice, in the light of its closely association with dopamine depletion of basal ganglia in mildly impaired PD patients. (shrink)
Will democracy figure prominently in China's future? If so, what kind of democracy? In this insightful and thought-provoking book, David Hall and Roger Ames explore such questions and, in the course of answering them, look to the ideas of John Dewey and Confucius.
One way to understand science is as a selection process. David Hull, one of the dominant figures in contemporary philosophy of science, sets out in this 2001 volume a general analysis of this selection process that applies equally to biological evolution, the reaction of the immune system to antigens, operant learning, and social and conceptual change in science. Hull aims to distinguish between those characteristics that are contingent features of selection and those that are essential. Science and Selection brings (...) together many of David Hull's most important essays on selection in one accessible volume. (shrink)
Considered the most original thinker in the Italian philosophical tradition, Giambattista Vico has been the object of much scholarly attention but little consensus. In this new interpretation, David L. Marshall examines the entirety of Vico's oeuvre and situates him in the political context of early modern Naples. He demonstrates Vico's significance as a theorist who adapted the discipline of rhetoric to modern conditions. Marshall presents Vico's work as an effort to resolve a contradiction. As a professor of rhetoric at (...) the University of Naples, Vico had a deep investment in the explanatory power of classical rhetorical thought, especially that of Aristotle, Cicero, and Quintilian. Yet as a historian of the failure of Naples as a self-determining political community, he had no illusions about the possibility or worth of democratic and republican systems of government in the post-classical world. As Marshall demonstrates, by jettisoning the assumption that rhetoric only illuminates direct, face-to-face interactions between orator and auditor, Vico reinvented rhetoric for a modern world in which the Greek polis and the Roman res publica are no longer paradigmatic for political thought. (shrink)
If species are the things that evolve at least in large part through the action of natural selection, then both genetic and phenotypic variability are essential to biological species. If all species are variable, then Homo sapiens must be variable. Hence, it is very unlikely that the human species as a biological species can be characterized by a set of invariable traits. It might be the case that at this moment in evolutionary history, all human beings happen to possess a (...) particular set of traits, but if so, this will be in large part an evolutionary accident. As a result, anyone who proposes to base anything, including ethics, on human nature is basing it on historical happenstance. (shrink)
The philosophy of biology is one of the most exciting new areas in the field of philosophy and one that is attracting much attention from working scientists. This Companion, edited by two of the founders of the field, includes newly commissioned essays by senior scholars and up-and-coming younger scholars who collectively examine the main areas of the subject - the nature of evolutionary theory, classification, teleology and function, ecology, and the problematic relationship between biology and religion, among other topics. Up-to-date (...) and comprehensive in its coverage, this unique volume will be of interest not only to professional philosophers but also to students in the humanities and researchers in the life sciences and related areas of inquiry. (shrink)
Very much the same idea resurfaced in modern times with the British idealists and Continental existentialists. The author reviews these antecedents, showing how his theory differs from those of his predecessors.
At a time when politics and virtue seem less compatible than oil and water, _Democracy and Moral Development_ shows how to bring the two together. Philosopher David Norton applies classical concepts of virtue to the premises of modern democracy. The centerpiece of the book is a model of organizational management applicable to the state, business, the professions, and voluntary communities.
An icon of philosophy and psychology during the first half of the 20th century, Dewey is known as the father of Functional Psychology and a pivotal figure of the Pragmatist movement as well as the progressive movement in education. This concise and critical look at Dewey’s work examines his discourse of "right" and "wrong," as well as political notions such as freedom, rights, liberty, equality, and naturalism. The author of several essays about thought and logic, Dewey’s legacy remains not only (...) through the works he left us, but also through the institutions he founded, which include The New School for Social Research in New York City and the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. Hildebrand’s biography brilliantly interweaves the different strands of Dewey's thought, and examines the legacy he left behind. (shrink)
Biological species have been treated traditionally as spatiotemporally unrestricted classes. If they are to perform the function which they do in the evolutionary process, they must be spatiotemporally localized individuals, historical entities. Reinterpreting biological species as historical entities solves several important anomalies in biology, in philosophy of biology, and within philosophy itself. It also has important implications for any attempt to present an "evolutionary" analysis of science and for sciences such as anthropology which are devoted to the study of single (...) species. (shrink)
The goal of cladistic systematics is to discern sister-group relations (cladistic relations) by the methods of cladistic analysis and to represent them explicitly and unambiguously in cladograms and cladistic classifications. Cladists have selected cladistic relations to represent for two reasons: cladistic relations can be discerned with reasonable certainty by the methods of cladistic analysis and they can be represented with relative ease in cladograms and classifications. Cladists argue that features of phylogeny other than cladistic relations cannot be discerned with sufficient (...) certainty to warrant attempting to represent them in either cladograms or classifications and could not be represented if they could. I argue that a better alternative is to work toward improving methods of cladistic analysis (or else to supplement them with other methods) so that such features of phylogeny can be discerned and to devise methods of representation capable of representing them in both cladograms and classifications. However, cladograms and classifications cannot represent everything about phylogeny. It is better to represent one or two aspects of phylogeny explicitly and unambiguously than nothing at all. (shrink)
Current debates over multiculturalism often pit those who believe that every perspective should be represented against those who hold fast to the notion of a universal "common ground." In this timely and original work, David L. Norton persuasively argues for the power of a "transcendental imagination," that is, an imagination that can go beyond itself to gain another's perspective without necessarily assimilating that perspective. Imagination, Understanding, and the Virtue of Liberality will be an important work for all intellectuals and (...) very useful in courses that address multiculturalism. (shrink)