The relationship of word-meaning to speaker's-meaning has not been examined thoroughly enough. Some philosophical problems are solved and others made plainer if the full consequences of a proper relationship between these two is worked out.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, the French philosopher of science Edmond Goblot wrote three prescient papers on function and teleology. He advanced the remarkable thesis that functions are, as a matter of conceptual analysis, selected effects. He also argued that “selection” must be understood broadly to include both evolutionary natural selection and intelligent design. Here, I do three things. First, I give an overview of Goblot’s thought. Second, I identify his core thesis about function. Third, I argue (...) that, despite its ingenuity, Goblot’s expansive construal of function cannot be right. Still, Goblot deserves long-overdue credit for his work. (shrink)
When first published twenty years ago, The Logic of Medicine presented a new way of thinking about clinical medicine as a scholarly discipline as well as a profession. Since then, advances in research and technology have revolutionized both the practice and theory of medicine. In this new, extensively rewritten edition, Dr. Murphy includes changes to show how these different areas of scholarship may affect details of "the logic of medicine" without compromising its fundamental coherence. New to this edition are discussions (...) of the challenge of the flood of new empirical data, new ideas in genetics, molecular biology, homeostasis, pathogenesis, cancer, aging, and Alzheimer's disease. Murphy also comments on such new theoretical topics as dynamic systems, chaos, and fractals and their impact on the burgeoning fields of philosophy and practice of medicine. Written with medical students in mind, the book includes a glossary, many new examples, and problems for solutions with comments on each. An entirely new chapter deals with modeling. Clinicians and researchers will also find the principles thought-provoking and illuminating. (shrink)
From the author of Wittgenstein's Poker and Would You Kill the Fat Man?, the story of an extraordinary group of philosophers during a dark chapter in Europe's history On June 22, 1936, the philosopher Moritz Schlick was on his way to deliver a lecture at the University of Vienna when Johann Nelböck, a deranged former student of Schlick's, shot him dead on the university steps. Some Austrian newspapers defended the madman, while Nelböck himself argued in court that his onetime teacher (...) had promoted a treacherous Jewish philosophy. David Edmonds traces the rise and fall of the Vienna Circle—an influential group of brilliant thinkers led by Schlick—and of a philosophical movement that sought to do away with metaphysics and pseudoscience in a city darkened by fascism, anti-Semitism, and unreason. The Vienna Circle's members included Otto Neurath, Rudolf Carnap, and the eccentric logician Kurt Gödel. On its fringes were two other philosophical titans of the twentieth century, Ludwig Wittgenstein and Karl Popper. The Circle championed the philosophy of logical empiricism, which held that only two types of propositions have cognitive meaning, those that can be verified through experience and those that are analytically true. For a time, it was the most fashionable movement in philosophy. Yet by the outbreak of World War II, Schlick's group had disbanded and almost all its members had fled. Edmonds reveals why the Austro-fascists and the Nazis saw their philosophy as such a threat. The Murder of Professor Schlick paints an unforgettable portrait of the Vienna Circle and its members while weaving an enthralling narrative set against the backdrop of economic catastrophe and rising extremism in Hitler's Europe. (shrink)
Much of experimental philosophy consists of surveying 'folk' intuitions about philosophically relevant issues. Are the results of these surveys evidence that the relevant folk intuitions cannot be predicted from the ‘armchair’? We found that a solid majority of philosophers could predict even results claimed to be 'surprising'. But, we argue, this does not mean that such experiments have no role at all in philosophy.
The inspectability of after-images has been denied. A typical claim is Ilham Dilman's: ‘I cannot say my apprehension of the after-image I see has changed but not the after-image itself’, for, he says, appearance and reality are one as regards the after-image. His reason is that this is a logical consequence of the fact that other people have no possible basis for correcting what I say about the after-image I see.
Voilà un ouvrage d’une grande originalité, si grande qu’un spécialiste aussi consommé de la biologie aristotélicienne que Pierre Pellegrin – qui préface le livre – peut écrire (p. 10) : « Mes années d’études ne me donnent pas plus de compétence que n’en a n’importe quel lecteur nouveau du corpus biologique aristotélicien pour apprécier un travail aussi neuf ». Quant à moi, je ne saurais mieux faire, pour en donner une première idée, que d’emprunter quelques phrases à cette préface : (...) « […] l.. (shrink)
Originally published in 1955, The Moral Decision remains today a fresh, lively, and literate quest for moral guides in the American system of law. Each topic is introduced with a real courtroom case followed by a summary of the uncontroverted facts, the issues before the court, the judge's opinion, and Edmond Cahn's objective and penetrating discussion of the ethical issues involved. The cases chosen operate as prisms, revealing an entire spectrum of moral forces—personal ambitions, group standards, lusts, sufferings, and (...) ideals. A new foreword by Norman Redlich, Dean of the New York University School of Law, affirms the value of The Moral Decision as an authoritative and humane introduction to law and morality. (shrink)
Thus far in the development of the discipline of medical ethics, the overriding concern has been with solutions to specific problems. But discussion is hampered by lack of understanding of the scope and methodology of medical ethics, and its scientific and philosophical basis. In Underpinnings of Medical Ethics Edmond A. Murphy, James J. Butzow, and Edward L. Suarez-Murias offer much-needed clarification of the purview, ontological basis, and methodology of a medical ethics that is to be comprehensive and yet readily (...) accepted by all. The authors begin by describing the scope of the analysis and discussing possible ethical systems and paradigms. They then deal with the structures and concepts necessary in the formulation of a coherent philosophy: normality and disease, scientific and juridical law, certainty and certitude, decisions. Finally, they introduce particular human dimensions, such as quality of life, pain, and responsibility. Throughout, case examples illustrate the authors' theoretical framework. (shrink)
what is now the mainstream view as to the best way forward in the dream of engineering reliable software systems out of autonomous agents. The way of using formal logics to specify, implement and verify distributed systems of interacting units using a guiding analogy of beliefs, desires and intentions. The implicit message behind the book is this: Distributed Artificial Intelligence (DAI) can be a respectable engineering science. It says: we use sound formal systems; can cite established philosophical foundations; and will (...) be able to build reliable and flexible software systems. (shrink)
On se souvient peut-être de la parution au début de l’année 2008 du livre de Sylvain Gougenheim, Aristote au Mont Saint-Michel – Les racines grecques de l’Europe chrétienne (Le Seuil, Paris, 2008), des recensions laudatives dont cet ouvrage fit l’objet dans de grands quotidiens (le Monde, le Figaro), et de la polémique qui s’ensuivit. Cette polémique et l’ouvrage qui l’a suscitée semblent aujourd’hui déjà oubliés, les projecteurs de l’actualité, comme on dit, s’étant braqués sur d’autres obje..
The meaning of consciousness, has interested thinkers throughout recorded time, and yet it is quite obvious that its understanding is still exceedingly remote. This is evident from the fact that even the presently used definitions give rise to contradictions. As implied by the title, the purpose of this paper is to remove some of the main difficulties concerned with this definition by using epistemological methods which have recently been developed. It is hoped that by clarifying the definition of consciousness, or, (...) more accurately, by clarifying the process leading to a scientifically rigorous definition of consciousness, some of the paradoxes surrounding the concept might be removed. (shrink)