This essay examines Patočka’s reflections on the ideological battles in the middle of the 20th century and the nature of ideology as such. Drawing on Patočka’s texts from around the time of the Second World War and the Communist takeover in Czechoslovakia, the essay describes Patočka’s analysis of the main philosophical schools of the age, how they conceive of Man, and how they seek to use Man for their own purposes. The essay shows how this external materialization of Man dehumanizes (...) and thus abuses. Only an idea respecting human freedom will do justice to the human experience. Lastly the author reflects on whether Patočka’s analysis of the human situation 60 years ago under various types of totalitarianism is still relevant today. (shrink)
Was sind wir? Wie immer man sich zu dieser Frage stellt, eines scheint offenkundig: Wir sind Tiere, genauer gesagt: menschliche Tiere, Mitglieder der Art Homo sapiens. Dabei mag es überraschen, daß viele Philosophen diese vermeintlich banale Tatsache abstreiten. Plato, Augustinus, Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Kant und Hegel, um nur einige herausragende zu nennen, waren alle der Meinung, wir seien keine Tiere. Es mag zwar sein, daß unsere Körper Tiere sind. Doch sind wir nicht mit unseren Körpern gleichzusetzen. Wir sind etwas (...) anderes als Tiere. Kaum anderer Meinung sind Denker nicht-westlicher Traditionen. Und rund neun von zehn Philosophen, die heutzutage über Probleme der personalen Identität nachdenken, vertreten Ansichten, die ausschließen, daß wir Tiere sind. (shrink)
This essay interprets John Locke's teachings about private societies, or free private associations. The essay proceeds by interpreting Locke's mature writings on ethics, politics, and philosophy, and then by illustrating Locke's teachings as they apply to two contemporary problems in associational freedom. Although Locke wrote about private societies primarily in the course of arguing for religious toleration, throughout his mature corpus he develops an internally consistent general theory of associational freedom. At first glance, Locke seems to suggest that all citizens (...) are entitled to associate for any end of their choosing, to control admission into and expulsion from their membership, and to enforce their own internal rules of governance. However, Locke qualifies this broad right to bar societies from organizing around ends inconsistent with the minimal moral and political conditions of liberalism. Ultimately, Locke suggests, citizens deserve a broad right of private society only to the extent that they are well enough formed by their regime and its private institutions to be capable of governing themselves in both private and public life. In contrast with contemporary practice, Locke's justification is broader in some respects and narrower in others. The essay illustrates the implications by considering how Locke's teachings justify limiting the scope of anti-discrimination laws and enlarging the scope of government efforts to dissolve seditious associations. (shrink)
On October 1, 1988, thirty-five years after co-discovering the structure of the DNA molecule, Dr. James Watson launched an unprecedented experiment in American science policy. In response to a reporter's question at a press conference, he unilaterally set aside 3 to 5 percent of the budget of the newly launched Human Genome Project to support studies of the ethical, legal, and social implications of new advances in human genetics. The Human Genome Project, by providing geneticists with the molecular maps of (...) the human chromosomes that they use to identify specific human genes, will speed the proliferation of a class of DNA-based diagnostic and risk-assessment tests that already create professional ethical and health-policy challenges for clinicians. “The problems are with us now, independent of the genome program, but they will be associated with it,” Watson said. “We should devote real money to discussing these issues.” By 1994, the “ELSI program” had spent almost $20 million in pursuit of its mission, and gained both praise and criticism for its accomplishments. (shrink)
Erwin Schrödinger’s 1944 publication What is Life? is a classic of twentieth century science writing. In his book, Schrödinger discussed the chromosome fibre as the seat of heredity and variation thanks to a hypothetical aperiodic structure – a suggestion that famously spurred on a generation of scientists in their pursuit of the gene as a physico-chemical entity. While historical attention has been given to physicists who were inspired by the book, little has been written about its biologist readers. This paper (...) examines the case of the English evolutionary botanist and cytologist Irène Manton, who took an interest in What is Life? for its relevance to her own research in chromosome structure as a clue to plant phylogeny. Drawing on recently discovered correspondence between Manton and Schrödinger, the paper reconstructs Manton ‘s path to the book and her response to it by way of throwing new light on a pivotal moment in the history of the debate on chromosome structure. (shrink)
David Silver has argued that there is an illegitimate circularity in Plantinga's account of how a Christian theist can defend herself against the potential defeater presented by Paul Draper's formulation of the problem of evil. The way out of the circle for the theist, thinks Silver, would be by adopting a kind of evidentialism: she needs to make an appeal to evidence that is independent of the reasons she has for holding theistic belief in the first place. I shall argue (...) that Silver's argument is unsuccessful, mainly because he does not get Plantinga's thought right. Silver's confusion is in taking causes of belief as reasons for belief, and in failing to account for the impact of belief holism and our web of beliefs on the very hope for independent reasons. (shrink)
Although much legal scholarship discusses the meaning of the religion clauses of the U.S. Constitution, very few articles analyze the ways in which state regulation affects actors' incentives to engage in religious behavior. Yet the question of how a law influences religious behavior is important for determining whether various laws are desirable, and whether they violate constitutional constraints. This article draws on recent economic models of religious organization to analyze the ways in which laws affect the behavior of religious groups. (...) Religious groups produce collective goods for their members, and the effect of laws can be analyzed by examining how they modify the payoffs members receive for cooperating or free riding. The article examines the use of laws to establish religious groups, to subsidize them with cash or tax benefits, to provide accommodations for them, to provide symbolic support for them, to provide secular substitutes for the collective goods they produce, and to regulate disputes between members. The article also briefly discusses the constitutional implications of the analysis. (shrink)
Based on anthropological fieldwork conducted in the Eastern Cape, the paper explores the interconnections between dreams and medicines as aspects of the Xhosa diviner’s culture, knowledge and experience. Background information is provided in the introduction, inter alia, on the Xhosa patrilineal clan, divination and religious and cultural change. The ability to dream, inter alia of the ancestors and medicines, is central to the diviner’s intuition and professional stock-in-trade, which are part and parcel of a religious healing tradition. Examples of dreams (...) involving the ancestors, diviners, clients and medicinal plants are presented and analysed in relation to relevant case material. The ritual significance of dreams is explored in some detail. The distinctions between diviner and herbalist, and between medicines and charms, receive attention in the section on medicines. The underlying purpose of traditional Xhosa religious ideology is discussed in the conclusion. (shrink)
My goal in this essay is to say something helpful about the philosophical foundations of deontic restraints, i.e., moral restraints on actions that are, roughly speaking, grounded in the wrongful character of the actions themselves and not merely in the disvalue of their results. An account of deontic restraints will be formulated and offered against the backdrop of three related, but broader, contrasts or puzzles within moral theory. The plausibility of this account of deontic restraints rests in part on how (...) well this account resolves the puzzles or illuminates the contrasts which make up this theoretical backdrop. (shrink)
1. Introduction This essay deals with the hard topic of the permissible killing of the innocent. The relevance of this topic to the morality of war is obvious. For even the most defensive and just wars, i.e., the most defensive and just responses to existing or imminent large-scale aggression, will inflict harm upon – in particular, cause the deaths of – innocent bystanders. 1 The most obvious and relevant example is that of innocent Soviet noncombatants who would be killed by (...) even the most precise defensive strike against Soviet strategic weapons or troop formations that is now possible. Should there be no vindication or, at least, no excuse for some killings of such innocent bystanders, morality would dictate that even defensive counterforce measures against largescale attacks should be renounced. (shrink)
In this essay I propose to explicate and defend a new and improved version of a Lockean proviso—the self-ownership proviso . I shall presume here that individuals possess robust rights of self-ownership. I shall take it that each individual has strong moral claims over the elements which constitute her person, e.g., her body parts, her talents, and her energies. However, in the course of the essay, I shall be challenging what I take to be the standard conception of self-ownership and (...) proposing an enrichment of that conception. The SOP is presented and in part justified as an implication of the right of self-ownership as it is more richly conceived—hence its designation as the self-ownership proviso. As an implication of the right of self-ownership which is also compatible, in theory and practice, with extensive and robust private property rights, the SOP is offered as an integral element of classical-liberal political theory. (shrink)
To the student of the recent history of theological ideas in the West, it sometimes seems as though, of all the ‘new’ subjects that have been intro duced into theological discussion during the last hundred or so years, only two have proved to be of permanent significance. One is, of course, biblical criticism, and the other, the subject which in my University is still called ‘comparative religion’—the dispassionate study of the religions of the world as phenomena in their own right.
In this paper I offer three main challenges to James (2011). All three turn on the nature of philosophy and secure knowledge in Spinoza. First, I criticize James's account of the epistemic role that experience plays in securing adequate ideas for Spinoza. In doing so I criticize her treatment of what is known as the ‘conatus doctrine’ in Spinoza in order to challenge her picture of the relationship between true religion and philosophy. Second, this leads me into a criticism of (...) her account of the nature of philosophy in Spinoza. I argue it is less piecemeal and less akin to what we would recognize as ‘science’ than she suggests. Third, I argue against James's core commitment that Spinoza's three kinds of knowledge differ in degree; I claim they differ in kind. My argument will offer a new interpretation of Spinoza's conception of ‘common notions’. Moreover, I argue that Spinozistic adequate knowledge involves something akin to angelic disembodiment. (shrink)
This paper presents an examination of the Fellowship of the New Life, a pioneering British socialist organization from the 1880s and 1890s. The paper outlines the organizations and some of the prominent individuals involved in the Fellowship, presents an overview of Fellowship analyses of existing society, and details their political programmes and actions. It shows that in both their analysis and their activities the Fellowship were very much of the socialist mainstream in their day. They rejected the dichotomies of their (...) society, such as individual-society, ends-means and materialism- ethicalism, and they sought to combine these facets of life in both their thought and their political campaigns. The conclusion reached is that this complex, resourceful and potent group have been ill-served by being given the simplistic and pejorative label of 'ethical' socialism. (shrink)
This article discusses the British Nationalization of Labour Society , a group formed in response to the political ideas brought forth by Edward Bellamy’s novel Looking Backward. The article traces the roots of this group in British radicalism in general, and in campaigns for land nationalization and the works of Henry George in particular. The NLS were grounded in a deeply materialist and rationalist worldview and the influence of this on their political ideas and practice is shown. Relationships between the (...) ideas of the British Bellamyites and the ideas of British socialists are also discussed. (shrink)
Parisinus 1672, executed at the instigation of Maximus Planudes, is the only manuscript which contains all seventy-eight extant moralia of Plutarch. It may be dated soon after 1302, the year in which Planudes appended to his manuscript of the Greek Anthology a πίναξ Πλουτρχου containing the titles of the first sixty-nine of the seventy-eight treatises and concluding with the words τατα πντα εὑρθη. The addition of nine further treatises to the Corpus was made possible by the discovery of two further (...) sources, one containing Nos. 70–7 and the other No. 78. The tradition of No. 78 is established beyond doubt: we are concerned here only with the remaining eight, Nos. 70–7. (shrink)
This book investigates how citizens who have differences and disagreements ought to relate to one another in a liberal democracy. Specifically, this book advances a metaphor of citizenship that I call 'role-based constitutional fellowship.' Role-based constitutional fellowship, I argue, is a desirable way for citizens to relate to one another in conditions of modern pluralism, where multiple races, ethnicities, religions, and economic statuses exist and where citizens adhere to and pursue competing political interests, creeds, and objectives. Under role-based constitutional fellowship, (...) citizens share a sense that they are united in a common aim and that they are largely committed to doing what is necessary to pursue that aim - that they are fellows. I describe this sense of fellowship as constitutional and role-based. (shrink)
Debates concerning the relationship between Tridentine Catholicism and Catholicism after Vatican II dominate theological conversation today, particularly with regard to understandings of the Church and its engagement with the world. Current historical narratives paint ecclesiology after the Council of Trent as dominated by juridical concerns, uniformity, and institutionalism. Purportedly neglected are the spiritual, diverse, and missional aspects of the Church. This book challenges such narratives by investigating the Spanish Jesuit Francisco Suárez's theology of ecclesial unity and catholicity. Analyzing standard as (...) well as overlooked sources of Suárez's ecclesiology, the author shows how Suárez wrestles with the new demands of his time and anticipates later ecumenical developments in twentieth-century Catholic ecclesiology. Early modern expansion prompted theologians after Trent to reckon with the ecclesial status of baptized Protestants, the Greek Orthodox, and non-believers in the New World. It further prompted reflection on the universality, or catholicity, of the Church, and how the Church's mission to the nations serves her greater unity in Christ. Throughout this exposition, the author reveals Suárez's vision of the Church to be deeply spiritual, diverse, and missional-not at the expense of the institutional, but as it's necessary and life-giving source. The Church, for Suárez, is primarily a way of life. This book explores not only Suárez's speculative ecclesiology, but how the unity and catholicity of the body of Christ is lived out in practice, that is, in the worship and works of the faithful, and, most notably, in the charism of his own religious order, the Society of Jesus. Suárez thus shows his readers what the spiritual dynamic between Christic unity and missional catholicity should look like in the Church. (shrink)
What was the French Revolution? Was it the triumph of Enlightenment humanist principles, or a violent reign of terror? Did it empower the common man, or just the bourgeoisie? And was it a turning point in world history, or a mere anomaly? E.J. Hobsbawm’s classic historiographic study—written at the very moment when a new set of revolutions swept through the Eastern Bloc and brought down the Iron Curtain—explores how the French Revolution was perceived over the following two centuries. He traces (...) how the French Revolution became integral to nineteenth-century political discourse, when everyone from bourgeois liberals to radical socialists cited these historical events, even as they disagreed on what their meaning. And he considers why references to the French Revolution continued to inflame passions into the twentieth century, as a rhetorical touchstone for communist revolutionaries and as a boogeyman for social conservatives. _Echoes of the Marseillaise _is a stimulating examination of how the same events have been reimagined by different generations and factions to serve various political agendas. It will give readers a new appreciation for how the French Revolution not only made history, but also shaped our fundamental notions about history itself. (shrink)
"Rules of justice would benefit the members of a community little if individuals lacked an effective desire to comply with these rules. In Preferring Justice, Eric Cave argues that, as flawed agents of".
According to the popular-choice theory of secession, the inhabitants of any territory, as a group, should have an internationally recognized right to secede from a sovereign state if their majority chooses by referendum to do so, and if they are capable of sustaining legitimate state institutions. Prior efforts to defend this group right on individualistic grounds—such as the individual right to associate freely or to participate as an equal in democratic decision-making—have failed. As a result, some recent defenders of the (...) choice theory have suggested that the group right the theory implies is “irreducibly collective.” I argue, to the contrary, that this group right can be grounded fully in the fundamental right of each individual to be treated as an equal by the political institutions to which he is subject. The territorial implications of the choice theory are, moreover, consistent with a plausible account of the territorial rights of states. (shrink)
[Work in progress.] According to standard late medieval Christian thought, humans in heaven are unable to sin, having been “confirmed” in their goodness; and, nevertheless, are more free than humans are in the present life. The rise of voluntarist conceptions of the will in the late thirteenth century made it increasingly difficult to hold onto both claims. Peter Olivi suggested that the impeccability of the blessed was dependent upon a special activity of God upon their wills and argued that this (...) external constraint upon their wills did not eliminate their freedom. Later voluntarists largely agreed with Olivi in attributing the confirmation of the blessed to be dependent upon God’s activity in some way, but disputed the means by which and the extent to which the wills of those in heaven could be said to retain their freedom. This paper will examine various attempts made to either harmonize these two claims or else to soften the blow of rejecting one of them; among the authors surveyed will be Peter John Olivi, John Duns Scotus, Henry of Harclay, William of Ockham, Walter Chatton, and Margurite Porete. (shrink)
With the originality and energy that have marked his earlier works, Eric Wolf now explores the historical relationship of ideas, power, and culture. Responding to anthropology's long reliance on a concept of culture that takes little account of power, Wolf argues that power is crucial in shaping the circumstances of cultural production. Responding to social-science notions of ideology that incorporate power but disregard the ways ideas respond to cultural promptings, he demonstrates how power and ideas connect through the medium (...) of culture. Wolf advances his argument by examining three very different societies, each remarkable for its flamboyant ideological expressions: the Kwakiutl Indians of the Northwest Pacific Coast, the Aztecs of pre-Hispanic Mexico, and National Socialist Germany. Tracing the history of each case, he shows how these societies faced tensions posed by ecological, social, political, or psychological crises, prompting ideological responses that drew on distinctive, historically rooted cultural understandings. In each case study, Wolf analyzes how the regnant ideology intertwines with power around the pivotal relationships that govern social labor. Anyone interested in the history of anthropology or in how the social sciences make comparisons will want to join Wolf in _Envisioning Power_. (shrink)
Eric Miller's affordable, elegant translation of Nemesis divina by Carolus Linnaeus reveals a little-known side of the great natural historian. A classic of Swedish literature that influenced luminaries such as August Strindberg, Nemesis divina was composed over years, apparently for the edification of Linnaeus's wayward son Carl. A surprising field-guide to theodicy, the book explores the occult operation of a Theologia experimentalis, an "empirical theology," in the lives of men and women. Many of these people were known to Linnaeus (...) himself. Eric Miller, an award-winning poet and scholar, set Linnaeus's fascinating and eloquent work in a broad literary and philosophical context, linking it to matters as diverse as New England Transcendentalism, the subculture of Black Metal, the Icelandic sagas and contemporary Swedish poetry. Nemesis divina will intrigue students of literature, religion, science, and philosophy alike. (shrink)
Eric T. Morton ABSTRACT: Robert Talisse and Scott Aikin have argued that substantive versions of value pluralism are incompatible with pragmatism, and that all such versions of pluralism must necessarily collapse into versions of strong metaphysical pluralism. They also argue that any strong version of value pluralism is incompatible with pragmatism’s meliorist commitment and will...
Eric Voegelin’s Asian Political Thought brings together scholars from both Asia and the West to reflect upon the political philosopher’s thought about China, Japan, Korea, Central Asia, and India, showing how Voegelin’s approach can illuminate the region but also what are the possibilities that Asia offers in the twentieth-first century.
Twentieth-century political philosopher Eric Voegelin is best known as a severe critic of modernity. Much of his work argues that modernity is a Gnostic revolt against the fundamental structure of reality. For Voegelin, “Gnosticism” is the belief that human beings can transform the nature of reality through secret knowledge and social action, and he considered it the crux of the crisis of modernity. As Voegelin struggled with this crisis throughout his career, he never wavered in his judgment that philosophers (...) of the modern continental tradition were complicit in the Gnostic revolt of modernity. But while Voegelin’s analysis of those philosophers is at times scathing, his work also bears marks of their influence, and Voegelin has much more in common with the theorists of the modern continental tradition than is usually recognized. _Eric Voegelin and the Continental Tradition: Explorations in Modern Political Thought _evaluates this political philosopher—one of the most original and influential thinkers of our time—by examining his relationship to the modern continental tradition in philosophy, from Kant to Derrida. In a compelling introduction, editors Lee Trepanier and Steven F. McGuire present a review of the trajectories of Voegelin’s thought and outline what often is portrayed as his derisive critique of modernity. Soon, however, they begin to unravel the similarities between Voegelin’s thought and the work of other thinkers in the continental tradition. The subsequent chapters explore these possible connections by examining Voegelin’s intellectual relationship to individual thinkers, including Hegel, Schelling, Kierkegaard, Heidegger, and Gadamer. The essays in this volume go beyond Voegelin’s own reading of the modern philosophers to offer a reevaluation of his relationship to those thinkers. In _Eric Voegelin and the Continental Tradition_, Voegelin’s attempt to grapple with the crisis of modernity becomes clearer, and his contribution to the modern continental tradition is illuminated. The book features the work of both established and emerging Voegelin scholars, and the essays were chosen to present thoughtful and balanced assessments of both Voegelin’s thought and the ideas of the other thinkers considered. As the first volume to examine the relationship—and surprising commonalities—between Voegelin’s philosophy and the continental tradition as a whole, this text will be of interest not only to Voegelin disciples but to philosophers engaged by continental modernism and all disciplines of political philosophy. (shrink)
Autobiographical Reflections is a window into the mind of a man whose reassessment of the nature of history and thought has overturned traditional approaches to, and appraisals of, the Western intellectual tradition. Here we encounter the motivations for Voegelin's work, the stages in the development of his unique philosophy of consciousness, his key intellectual breakthroughs, his theory of history, and his diagnosis of the political ills of the modern age. Included in this revised volume is a glossary of terms used (...) in Voegelin's writings. The glossary lists, defines, and illustrates from the author's writings many of the key terms employed, paying particular attention to the Greek terms. Together, the glossary and enlarged index systematically include names, subjects, ideas, writings, and terms, making this volume an indispensable help for any serious study of Eric Voegelin's oeuvre. (shrink)
Book Review. Eric Severson reviews Peter Gratton and John Panteleimon Manoussakis, eds. Traversing the Imaginary: Richard Kearney and the Postmodern Challenge . Evanston, Ill.: Northwestern University Press, 2007.
Eric Prieto is a professor of French and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of Listening In: Music, Mind, and the Modernist Narrative, and numerous essays on music-and-literature, literary spatiality, Caribbean literature, and literary theory.
Eric Rayner, a psychoanalyst in private practice, has written the first clear introduction to Matte-Blanco's key concepts for psychotherapists and psychoanalysts. While Matte-Blanco's theories on the structure of the unconscious and the way in which it operates are generally recognized to be the most original since those of Freud, many people find his use of terminology from mathematics and logic difficult to understand. In this book, Rayner sets out the central ideas and then shows, with examples, how they relate (...) to clinical practice. He also describes how the ideas are related to those of people in other disciplines--mathematics, logic, psychology (specifically Piaget), and anthropology, among others. Drawing on the work of a group of people who have been inspired by Matte-Blanco's thinking to extend their own ideas and test them out in the consulting room, this book reveals the significance of Matte-Blanco's thought for future research. (shrink)
This is the first complete, one-volume English translation of the ancient Chinese text Xunzi, one of the most extensive, sophisticated, and elegant works in the tradition of Confucian thought. Through essays, poetry, dialogues, and anecdotes, the Xunzi articulates a Confucian perspective on ethics, politics, warfare, language, psychology, human nature, ritual, and music, among other topics. Aimed at general readers and students of Chinese thought, Eric Hutton's translation makes the full text of this important work more accessible in English than (...) ever before. Named for its purported author, the Xunzi has long been neglected compared to works such as the Analects of Confucius and the Mencius. Yet interest in the Xunzi has grown in recent decades, and the text presents a much more systematic vision of the Confucian ideal than the fragmented sayings of Confucius and Mencius. In one famous, explicit contrast to them, the Xunzi argues that human nature is bad. However, it also allows that people can become good through rituals and institutions established by earlier sages. Indeed, the main purpose of the Xunzi is to urge people to become as good as possible, both for their own sakes and for the sake of peace and order in the world. In this edition, key terms are consistently translated to aid understanding and line numbers are provided for easy reference. Other features include a concise introduction, a timeline of early Chinese history, a list of important names and terms, cross-references, brief explanatory notes, a bibliography, and an index. (shrink)
William James is one of the founders of Pragmatism. _The Principles of Psychology_, is his attempt to separate metaphysics and psychology, and is his major work. _Essays in Radical Empiricism_ is James’ ontology, his theory of perception and his theory of intentionality; his full metaphysical position. Eric James provides a lively and engaging guide to these key texts, and explores their philosophical contexts, as well as their relationship to each other. He introduces: James’ unique philosophical vision James’ life and (...) the background of _The Principles of Psychology_, and _Essays in Radical Empiricism_ Modern resonances of James’s work in the ideas of twentieth century thinkers _The Routledge Philosophy GuideBook to William James on Psychology and Metaphysics_ is the ideal introduction for students who wish to understand more about this important philosopher and these classics works of philosophy. (shrink)