This paper develops a media theoretical extension of the communicative view on corporate social responsibility by elaborating on the characteristics of network societies, arguing that new media increase the speed and connectivity, and lead to higher plurality and the potential polarization of reality constructions. We discuss the implications for corporate social responsibility of becoming more polyphonic and sketch the contours of “communicative legitimacy.” Finally, we present this special issue and develop some questions for future research.
The paper introduces the communication view on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), which regards CSR as communicatively constructed in dynamic interaction processes in today’s networked societies. Building on the idea that communication constitutes organizations we discuss the potentially indeterminate, disintegrative, and conflictual character of CSR. We hereby challenge established mainstream views on CSR such as the instrumental view, which regards CSR as an organizational instrument to reach organizational aims such as improved reputation and financial performance, and the political-normative view on CSR, (...) which highlights the societal conditions and role of corporations in creating norms. We argue that both the established views, by not sufficiently acknowledging communication dynamics in networked societies, remain biased in three ways: control-biased, consistency-biased, and consensus-biased. We discuss implications of these biases and propose a future research agenda for the communication view on CSR. (shrink)
Including empirical examples and theoretical clarifications on many of the analytical issues raised in his recently published Down to Earth, this conversation with Bruno Latour and his collaborator, Danish sociologist Nikolaj Schultz, offers key insights into Latour’s recent and ongoing work. Revolving around questions on political ecology and social theory in our ‘New Climatic Regime’, Latour argues that in order to have politics you need a land and you need a people. This interview present reflections on such politics, such (...) land and such people, and it ends with a call for a sociology that takes up the task of connecting the three by investigating what he and Schultz call ‘geo-social classes’. The interview was conducted by Jakob Stein in Paris in November 2018. (shrink)
Ever since Frege, propositions have played a central role in philosophy of language. Propositions are generally conceived as abstract objects that have truth conditions essentially and fulfill both the role of the meaning of sentences and of the objects or content of propositional attitudes. More recently, the abstract conception of propositions has given rise to serious dissatisfaction among a number of philosophers, who have instead proposed a conception of propositional content based on cognitive acts (Hanks, Moltmann, Soames). This approach is (...) not entirely new, though, but has important precedents in early analytic philosophy and phenomenology. The aim of this volume is bring together some of the most important texts from the relevant historical literature and new contributions from contemporary proponents of act-based conceptions of propositional content. (shrink)
Henry Sidgwick was one of the great intellectual figures of nineteenth-century Britain. He was first and foremost a great moral philosopher, whose masterwork The Methods of Ethics is still widely studied today. He also wrote on economics, politics, education and literature. He was deeply involved in the founding of the first college for women at the University of Cambridge. He was also much concerned with the sexual politics of his close friend John Addington Symonds, a pioneer of gay studies. Through (...) his famous student, G. E. Moore, a direct line can be traced from Sidgwick and his circle to the Bloomsbury group. Bart Schultz has written a magisterial overview of this great Victorian sage. This biography will be eagerly sought out by readers interested in philosophy, Victorian literary studies, the history of ideas, the history of psychology and gender and gay studies. (shrink)
This book explores five Platonic dialogues: Lysis, Charmides, Protagoras, Euthydemus, and the Republic. This book uses Socrates’ narrative commentary as its primary interpretive framework. No one has engaged in a sustained attempt to explore the Platonic dialogues from this angle. As a result, it offers a unique contribution to Plato scholarship. The portrait of Socrates that emerges challenges the traditional view of Socrates as an intellectualist and offers a holistic vision of philosophical practice.
Public reason liberals argue that coercive social arrangements must be publicly justified in order to be legitimate. According to one model of public reason liberalism, known as convergence liberalism, this means that every moderately idealized member of the public must have sufficient reason, of her own, to accept the arrangement. A corollary of this Principle of Public Justification is that a coercive social arrangement fails to be legitimate so long as even one member of the public fails to have sufficient (...) reason to endorse the arrangement. This high bar for justification has led many critics, most notably David Enoch, to argue that convergence models are incapable of vindicating liberalism. They argue that in a sufficiently diverse society, there will always be someone for whom an arrangement is not justified, and therefore convergence liberalism leads to anarchy – the view that no law or coercive social arrangement is legitimate. Other critics accept that convergence liberalism could vindicate core liberal institutions but nothing more, and thus argue that the view makes libertarians effective “dictators”. In either case, critics hold that this objection is sufficient to reject convergence liberalism, either in favor of alternative public reason views or as a means of rejecting all public reason views. In this paper I argue that convergence liberalism can overcome this anarchy objection. I show that the objection largely rests on misinterpretations of convergence liberalism, and thus clarify aspects of the theory. However, I also show that internal debate over the scope of public justification – what stands in need of justification – must be resolved in favor of a wide scope, encompassing both State-based and non-State-based coercion, in order to overcome the anarchy objection. Therefore, my response to the anarchy objection has implications for how convergence liberalism should be developed going forward. (shrink)
It is a standard assumption in contemporary metaphysics that concrete objects come with a location in space and time. This applies not only to material objects and events, but also modes (such as the roundness of the apple, the softness of the pillow, Socrates' wisdom) and entities that have been called 'disturbances' (e.g. holes, folds, faults, and scratches). Taking the approach of descriptive metaphysics, I will show that modes and disturbances fail to have a spatial location (or at least a (...) bearer-independent spatial location). I will explore, but reject a potential explanation of the lack of a spatial location of modes and disturbances in terms of Fregean abstraction supplemented by truthmaking. A subsidiary point this paper makes is that in their lack of a direct spatial location, modes need to be sharply distinguished from tropes as a category of foundationalist metaphysics that has been at the center of a pursuit of a one-category ontology since Williams (1953). (shrink)
The concept of self-generated action is controversial, despite extensive study of its neural basis. Why is this concept so troublesome? We analyse the concept of self-generated action as employed by and. There are two definitions of self-generated action; as operant action and as underdetermined action. The latter draws on subjective experience. Experiments on action awareness suggest that experience may not be a good guide for defining self-generated action. Nevertheless, we agree with Passingham and colleagues that self-generated actions exist distinct from (...) operant actions. But defining ‘self-generated’ by the degree of involvement of an endogenous process risks regress. We sketch an alternative account of self-generated action that tries to avoid these problems to make self-generated actions accessible to experimental science. (shrink)
Philosophers frequently draw on natural language to motivate properties, propositions, and numbers as objects, and it is generally taken for granted that abstract objects of this sort are well-reflected in natural language and in fact that reference to them in natural language is pervasive In this paper, I will review and modify in a certain way the view I had advanced in Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language (Moltmann 2013a). This is the view that natural language permits reference (...) to abstract objects only in its periphery, not in its core. Even though reference to abstract objects of the sort of properties, propositions, and numbers is available only in the periphery of language, natural language permits reference to other sorts of abstract objects in its core, in particular abstract artifacts of various sorts. (shrink)
Introduction -- Historical background : schools and politics -- Major representatives : Daoists of the Liang and Tang -- The sources : commentaries and scriptures -- Key concepts : mystery, Dao, and the greater cosmos -- Salvation : Dao-nature and the sage -- The teaching : mysticism, cultivation, and integration -- Changes in the Pantheon : Laozi and the heavenly deities -- The body of the sage : the three-in-one and the three- -- Fold body of the Buddha.
This book pursues the question of how and whether natural language allows for reference to abstract objects in a fully systematic way. By making full use of contemporary linguistic semantics, it presents a much greater range of linguistic generalizations than has previously been taken into consideration in philosophical discussions, and it argues for an ontological picture is very different from that generally taken for granted by philosophers and semanticists alike. Reference to abstract objects such as properties, numbers, propositions, and degrees (...) is considerably more marginal than generally held. (shrink)
The notions of part and whole play an important role for ontology and in many areas of the semantics of natural language. Both in philosophy and linguistic semantics, usually a particular notion of part structure is used, that of extensional mereology. This paper argues that such a notion is insufficient for ontology and, especially, for the semantic analysis of the relevant constructionsof natural language. What is needed for the notion of part structure,in addition to an ordering among parts, is the (...) notion of integrated whole. (shrink)
Negative compatibility effects in the masked-prime paradigm are usually obtained when primes are masked effectively. With ineffective masks—and primes above the perceptual threshold—positive compatibility effects occur. We investigated whether this pattern reflects a causal relationship between conscious awareness and low-level motor control, or whether it reflects the fact that both are affected in the same way by changes in physical stimulus attributes. In a 5-session perceptual learning task, participants learned to consciously identify masked primes. However, they showed unaltered NCEs that (...) were not different from those produced by participants in a control group without equivalent perceptual learning. A control experiment demonstrated that no NCEs occur when prime identification is made possible by ineffective masking. The results suggest that perceptual awareness and low-level motor control are affected by the same factors, but are fundamentally independent of each other. (shrink)
Among the extensive literature on the first Critique, very few commentators offer a thorough analysis of Kant's conception of inner sense. This is quite surprising since the notion is central to Kant's theoretical philosophy, and it is very difficult to provide a consistent interpretation of this notion. In this paper, I first summarize Kant's claims about inner sense in the Transcendental Aesthetic and show why existing interpretations have been unable to dissolve the tensions arising from the conjunction of these claims. (...) Secondly, I present my own reconstruction of Kant's model of inner sense, relying essentially on Kantian considerations found in the B-version of the Transcendental Deduction. My main idea is that inner sense, for Kant, is a passive faculty that gets affected by the understanding performing its figurative synthesis on material given in outer sense. In the remainder of the paper, I highlight a few consequences of my interpretation and outline ways to deal with some objections. (shrink)
A common view is that natural language treats numbers as abstract objects, with expressions like the number of planets, eight, as well as the number eight acting as referential terms referring to numbers. In this paper I will argue that this view about reference to numbers in natural language is fundamentally mistaken. A more thorough look at natural language reveals a very different view of the ontological status of natural numbers. On this view, numbers are not primarily treated abstract objects, (...) but rather 'aspects' of pluralities of ordinary objects, namely number tropes, a view that in fact appears to have been the Aristotelian view of numbers. Natural language moreover provides support for another view of the ontological status of numbers, on which natural numbers do not act as entities, but rather have the status of plural properties, the meaning of numerals when acting like adjectives. This view matches contemporary approaches in the philosophy of mathematics of what Dummett called the Adjectival Strategy, the view on which number terms in arithmetical sentences are not terms referring to numbers, but rather make contributions to generalizations about ordinary (and possible) objects. It is only with complex expressions somewhat at the periphery of language such as the number eight that reference to pure numbers is permitted. (shrink)
This chapter gives a truthmaker-based account of the semantics of 'reifying' quantifiers like 'something' when they act as complements of intensional transitive verbs ('need', 'look for'). It argues that such quantifiers range over 'variable satisfiers' of the attitudinal object described by the verb (e.g. the need or the search).
This book present a unified semantic theory of expressions involving the notions of part and whole. It develops a theory of part structures which differs from traditional (extensional) mereological theories in that the notion of an integrated whole plays a central role and in that the part structure of an entity is allowed to vary across different situations, perspectives, and dimensions. The book presents a great range of empirical generalizations involving plurals, mass nouns, adnominal and adverbial modifiers such as 'whole', (...) 'together', and 'alone', nominal and adverbial quanitfiers ranging over parts, and expressions of completion such as 'completely' and 'partly'. (shrink)
Henry Sidgwick has gone down in the history of philosophy as both the great, classical utilitarian moral theorist who authored The Methods of Ethics, and an outstanding exemplar of intellectual honesty and integrity, one whose personal virtues were inseparable from his philosophical strengths and method. Yet this construction of Sidgwick the philosopher has been based on a too limited understanding of Sidgwick's casuistry and leading practical ethical concerns. As his friendship with John Addington Symonds reveals, Sidgwick was deeply entangled in (...) an effort to negotiate the proper spheres of the public and private, not only in philosophical and religious matters, but also with respect to explosive questions of sexuality – particularly same sex actions and identities, as celebrated by Symonds and other champions of Oxford Hellenism and Whitmania. His willingness to mislead the public about such issues suggests that Sidgwick's utilitarian casuistry was rather more complex and esoteric than has been recognized. (shrink)
The most common account of attitude reports is the relational analysis according towhich an attitude verb taking that-clause complements expresses a two-placerelation between agents and propositions and the that-clause acts as an expressionwhose function is to provide the propositional argument. I will argue that a closerexamination of a broader range of linguistic facts raises serious problems for thisanalysis and instead favours a Russellian `multiple relations analysis' (which hasgenerally been discarded because of its apparent obvious linguistic implausibility).The resulting account can be (...) given independent philosophical motivations within anintentionalist view of truth and predication. (shrink)
Natural languages generally distinguishes among different existence predicates for different types of entities, such as English 'exist', 'occur', and 'obtain'. The paper gives an in-depth discussion and analysis of a range of existence predicates in natural language within the general project of descriptive metaphysics, or more specifically ‘natural language ontology’.
The aim of natural language ontology is to uncover the ontological categories and structures that are implicit in the use of natural language, that is, that a speaker accepts when using a language. This article aims to clarify what exactly the subject matter of natural language ontology is, what sorts of linguistic data it should take into account, how natural language ontology relates to other branches of metaphysics, in what ways natural language ontology is important, and what may be distinctive (...) of the ontological categories and structures reflected in natural language. (shrink)
In recent work on contextdependency, it has been argued that certain types of sentences give rise to a notion of relative truth. In particular, sentences containing predicates of personal taste and moral or aesthetic evaluation as well as epistemic modals are held to express a proposition (relative to a context of use) which is true or false not only relative to a world of evaluation, but other parameters as well, such as standards of taste or knowledge or an agent. Thus, (...) a sentence like chocolate tastes good would express a proposition p that is true or false not only at a world of evaluation, but relative to the additional parameter as well, such as a parameter of taste or an agent. I will argue that the sentences that apparently give rise to relative truth should be understood by relating them in a certain way to the first person. More precisely, such sentences express what I will call firstpersonbased genericity, a form of generalization that is based on or directed toward an essential firstperson application of the predicate. The account differs from standard relative truth account in crucial respects: it is not the truth of the proposition expressed that is relative to the first person; the proposition expressed by a sentence with a predicate of taste rather has absolute truth conditions. Instead it is the propositional content itself that requires a firstpersonal cognitive access whenever it is entertained. This account, I will argue, avoids a range of problems that standard relative truth theories of the sentences in question face and explains a number of further peculiarities that such sentences display. (shrink)
This paper argues that attitudinal objects, entities of the sort of John's judgment, John's thought, and John's claim, should play the role of propositions, as the cognitive products of cognitive acts, not the acts themselves.
This paper will focus on a philosophically significant construction whose semantics brings together two important notions in Kit Fine’s philosophy, the notion of truthmaking and the notion of a variable embodiment, or its extension, namely what I call a ‘variable object’. This is the construction of definite NPs like 'the number of people that can fit into the bus', 'the book John needs to write', and 'the gifted mathematician John claims to be'. Such NPs are analysed as standing for variable (...) objects, which are part of the 'shallow', construction-driven ontology of natural language, yet are real. (shrink)
This paper outlines a semantic account of attitude reports and deontic modals based on cognitive and illocutionary products, mental states, and modal products, as opposed to the notion of an abstract proposition or a cognitive act.
Possible worlds semantics faces a range of difficulties for at least certain types of modals, especially deontic modals with their distinction between heavy and light permissions and obligations. This paper outlines a new semantics of modals that aims to overcome some of those difficulties. The semantics is based on an a novel ontology of modal objects, entities like obligations, permissions, needs, as well as epistemic states, abilities, and essences. Moreover, it is based on truthmaking, in the sense of Fine’s recent (...) truthmaker semantics. (shrink)
One of the goals of computerized tutoring systems is to optimize the learning of facts. Over a hundred years of declarative memory research have identified two robust effects that can improve such systems: the spacing and the testing effect. By making optimal use of both and adjusting the system to the individual learner using cognitive models based on declarative memory theories, such systems consistently outperform traditional methods. This adjustment process is driven by a continuously updated estimate of the rate of (...) forgetting for each item and learner on the basis of the learner's accuracy and response time. In this study, we investigated to what extent these estimates of individual rates of forgetting are stable over time and across different materials. We demonstrate that they are stable over time but not across materials. Even though most theories of human declarative memory assume a single underlying rate of forgetting, we show that, in practice, it makes sense to assume different materials are forgotten at different rates. If a computerized, adaptive fact-learning system allowed different rates of forgetting for different materials, it could adapt to individual learners more readily. (shrink)
This paper gives an outline of truthmaker semantics for natural language against the background of standard possible-worlds semantics. It develops a truthmaker semantics for attitude reports and deontic modals based on an ontology of attitudinal and modal objects and on a semantic function of clauses as predicates of such objects. It also présents new motivations for 'object-based truthmaker semantics' from intensional transitive verbs such as ‘need’, ‘look for’, ‘own’, and ‘buy’ and gives an outline of their semantics. This paper is (...) a commissioned 'target' article, with commentaries by W. Davis, B. Arsenijevic, K. Moulton, K. Liefke, M. Kaufmann, R. Matthews, P. Portner and A. Rubinstein, P. Elliott, G. Ramchand and my reply. (shrink)
Friedrich Nietzsche has emerged as one of the most important and influential modern philosophers. For several decades, the book series Monographien und Texte zur Nietzsche-Forschung has set the agenda in a rapidly growing and changing field of Nietzsche scholarship. The scope of the series is interdisciplinary and international in orientation reflects the entire spectrum of research on Nietzsche, from philosophy to literary studies and political theory. The series publishes monographs and edited volumes that undergo a strict peer-review process. The book (...) series is led by an international team of editors, whose work represents the full range of current Nietzsche scholarship. (shrink)
Bart Schultz’s Henry Sidgwick: Eye of the Universe is a welcome addition to the growing literature on Sidgwick. In this article, I direct my attention for the most part to one aspect of what Schultz says about Sidgwick’s masterpiece, The Methods of Ethics, as well as to what he does not say about Sidgwick’s illuminating but neglected work Practical Ethics. This article is divided into three sections. In the first, I argue that there is a problem with (...) class='Hi'>Schultz’s endorsement of the view that Sidgwick’smoral epistemology combines elements of both coherentism and foundationalism. In the second, I argue that Schultz has failed to do justice to Sidgwick’s mature views in Practical Ethics. In the final section, I briefly say something about Schultz’s suggestion that Sidgwick succumbed to both racism and dishonesty. (shrink)
The notion of existence is a very puzzling one philosophically. Often philosophers have appealed to linguistic properties of sentences stating existence. However, the appeal to linguistic intuitions has generally not been systematic and without serious regard of relevant issues in linguistic semantics. This paper has two aims. On the one hand, it will look at statements of existence from a systematic linguistic point of view, in order to try to clarify what the actual semantics of such statements in fact is. (...) On the other hand, it will explore what sort of ontology such statements reflect. The first aim is one of linguistic semantics; the second aim is one of descriptive metaphysics. Philosophically, existence statements appear to reflect the distinction between endurance and perdurance as well as particular notions of abstract states and of kinds. Linguistically, statements of existence involve a particular way of drawing the distinction between eventive and stative verbs and between individual-level and stage-level predicates as well as a particular approach to the semantics of bare plurals and mass nouns. (shrink)