Objective: To develop an approach for seeking informed consent to examine tissues retained from a previous study of sudden infant death syndrome as part of a study on asthma, and to document responses and participation rate.Design: Pilot open-ended approach to 10 volunteer SIDS parents, followed by staged approach to seek consent from the target SIDS families for the asthma study.Participants: Parents of SIDS infants known to SIDS and Kids Victoria and parents of SIDS infants from the 1991–2 SIDS in Victoria (...) case–control study.Main outcomes: Qualitative responses of the piloted parents and study parents, and participation rates.Results: The pilot group responses were used to refine the written material to be provided. Of the 72 families for which contact details were available, 45 gave verbal consent for contact by the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine regarding the asthma study, three refused and 24 did not respond to two letters. Thirty-three completed consent forms, all positive for participation in the asthma study, giving a positive response rate of 73% .Conclusions: The use of postmortem tissue for research is acceptable to the next of kin when an approach is sensitive to their concerns and needs and is made by experienced counsellors from a familiar organisation. Despite the painful memories evoked by the approach of the research group, the acceptance rate among those who could be contacted was high. (shrink)
In his book on Karl Barth Professor T. F. Torrance spoke at one point of ‘the great watershed of modern theology’. ‘There are,’ he wrote, 1 ‘two basic issues here. On the one hand, it is the very substance of the Christian faith that is at stake, and on the other hand, it is the fundamental nature of scientific method, in its critical and methodological renunciation of prior understanding, that is at stake. This is the great watershed of modern theology: (...) either we take the one way or the other – there is no third alter native… one must go either in the direction taken by Barth or in the direction taken by Bultmann.’. (shrink)
In a recent article ‘The Problem of Natural Theology’, Professor N. H. G. Robinson has considered the requirements of a ‘genuinely empirical natural theology’. For the first section of it, a very clear sorting-out of recent debates on the ontological argument, I have nothing but admiration. It ends with the question: ‘Granted that if we think of God we must think of him as necessarily existing, why must we think of God at all?’, followed by the comment: ‘We seem (...) thrown, without any prospect of rest, between apriorism and [Barthian] empiricism’. Robinson is rightly dissatisfied with that situation, and in his second section he raises the question whether there cannot be an approach to God which the debates on the ontological arguments have overlooked and which may be properly called an ‘empirical’ one, free from Barthian presuppositions. He finds what seems to be such an approach in Professor E. L. Mascall's Existence and Analogy but concludes that it is in fact after all a form of ‘rationalism’. In the third section he criticises Professor T. F. Torrance's defence of Barth's position in a way which seems to me most satisfactory, and in the fourth he makes his own positive proposals. With these I am in substantial agreement. It is only his account of Mascall's position, in particular at the end of his second section, which seems to call for critical comment. (shrink)
Robinson unfolds the vision of four influential writers on psychology---J.S. Mill, F. Hegel, Wilhelm Wundt, and William James---who considered the world, its persons and problems, its possibilities and conflicts, its scientific facts and its moral ambiguities, and proceeded to devise a means by which to improve it. Robinson shows how in thinking about psychology, these individuals provided an intellectual context within which the discipline could be refined.
This book consists of a selection of papers which throw new light on old problems in one of Plato s most difficult dialogues. The first set of papers deals with definitions of sophistry from different perspectives. In the central section E. Hulsz, D. O'Brien, B. Bossi, P. Mesquita and N. Cordero consider the problem of being and relative non-being with regard to Heraclitus and the legacy of Parmenides. The final section with papers by F. Fronterotta, J. de Garay, D. Ambuel (...) and L. Palumbo is devoted to ontology, predication and truth.". (shrink)