Recently the complexity of discursive practices has been widely acknowledged by the humanities and social sciences. In fact, to know anything is to know in terms of one or more discourse. The "discursive turn" in psychology may be considered as a new paradigm oriented to a correct study of (wo)man only if it is able to grasp the semiotical ground of psychic experience both as an "effort after meaning" and as a "struggle over meaning." In this sense the notion of (...) "diatext" has been proposed as a contribution in working out a psychosemiotical approach to understand how the discursive practices assign subject-positions to the agents of each interlocution scenario. (shrink)
Computing, today more than ever before, is a multi-faceted discipline which collates several methodologies, areas of interest, and approaches: mathematics, engineering, programming, and applications. Given its enormous impact on everyday life, it is essential that its debated origins are understood, and that its different foundations are explained. On the Foundations of Computing offers a comprehensive and critical overview of the birth and evolution of computing, and it presents some of the most important technical results and philosophical problems of the discipline, (...) combining both historical and systematic analyses. -/- The debates this text surveys are among the latest and most urgent ones: the crisis of foundations in mathematics and the birth of the decision problem, the nature of algorithms, the debates on computational artefacts and malfunctioning, and the analysis of computational experiments. By covering these topics, On the Foundations of Computing provides a much-needed resource to contextualize these foundational issues. -/- For practitioners, researchers, and students alike, a historical and philosophical approach such as what this volume offers becomes essential to understand the past of the discipline and to figure out the challenges of its future. (shrink)
This book explores the significance of rhetoric from the perspective of its complex relationship with philosophy. It demonstrates how this relationship gives expression to a basic tension at the core of politics: that between the contingency of its happening and the transcendence toward which it strives. The first part of the study proposes a reassessment of the ancient quarrel between philosophy and rhetoric, as it was discussed by Plato, Aristotle, and above all Cicero and Quintilian, who ambitiously attempted to bring (...) them together creating an ideal that is at the roots of the humanist tradition. It then moves to twentieth-century political theory and shows how the questions that emerge from that quarrel still strongly resonate in the works of key thinkers such as H. Arendt, L. Strauss, and R. Rorty. The volume thus offers an original contribution that locates itself at the intersection of politics, rhetoric, and philosophy. (shrink)
Philosophical and Empirical Approaches to Psychology critically assesses various ideas about the mind present in psychological research and their influence on psychologists’ choice and use of research method. This book references and integrates the philosophy of psychology with experimental psychology.
The notion of unconscious finds support in many experimental studies that use the dissociation method. This method allows us to distinguish between conscious and unconscious mental states when participants cannot explain why they performed as they did in an experiment. The paper will discuss the notion of unconscious by considering David R. Shanks’ criticisms of the application of the dissociation method: it will assess three studies Shanks proposes as reexaminations of three other relevant studies in the literature and show how (...) Shanks’ work provides an examination of the methodological pitfalls of such studies. The paper will argue that, although Shanks’s results are relevant regarding theories about the structure of cognition, his theoretical positions are at best confused and at worst diminish the importance of his research outcomes. It will conclude by showing why Shanks’s results that legitimize the role of consciousness in cognition can be problematic for the physicalistic or materialistic framework endorsed by cognitive psychologists. Keywords: Dissociation Method; Dual-process Theories; Cognitive Psychology; Consciousness; Unconscious La distinzione tra cognizione conscia e inconscia nell’opera di D.R. Schanks: una valutazione critica Riassunto: La nozione di inconscio trova supporto in vari studi sperimentali che utilizzano il metodo della dissociazione. Secondo la letteratura cognitivista questo metodo permette di distinguere tra stati mentali consci e inconsci quando i partecipanti non sono in grado di riportare verbalmente il perché si sono comportati in un certo modo durante l’esecuzione di un compito sperimentale. Il presente articolo discute la nozione di inconscio in relazione alle critiche di David R. Shanks all’applicazione del metodo della dissociazione. Più precisamente, esso valuta tre studi che Shanks propone come repliche e rivalutazioni di altrettante ricerche a favore della cognizione inconscia e mostra l’autore riesca con successo a metterne in luce le carenze metodologiche. Inoltre, sostiene anche che, sebbene i risultati sperimentali di Shanks siano importanti per le teorie sulla struttura della cognizione, le sue posizioni teoriche sono quantomeno confuse e rischiano di ridimensionare la portata delle sue conclusioni empiriche e metodologiche. L’articolo conclude mostrando le ragioni per cui i risultati di Shanks, che legittimano il ruolo della coscienza nella cognizione, siano controversi in quanto adottano una posizione filosofica fisicalistica o materialistica comune alla maggioranza degli psicologi cognitivi. Parole chiave: Metodo della dissociazione; Teorie del doppio processo; Psicologia cognitiva; Coscienza; Inconscio. (shrink)
This book provides a general survey of the main concepts, questions and results that have been developed in the recent interactions between quantum information, quantum computation and logic. Divided into 10 chapters, the books starts with an introduction of the main concepts of the quantum-theoretic formalism used in quantum information. It then gives a synthetic presentation of the main “mathematical characters” of the quantum computational game: qubits, quregisters, mixtures of quregisters, quantum logical gates. Next, the book investigates the puzzling entanglement-phenomena (...) and logically analyses the Einstein–Podolsky–Rosen paradox and introduces the reader to quantum computational logics, and new forms of quantum logic. The middle chapters investigate the possibility of a quantum computational semantics for a language that can express sentences like “Alice knows that everybody knows that she is pretty”, explore the mathematical concept of quantum Turing machine, and illustrate some characteristic examples that arise in the framework of musical languages. The book concludes with an analysis of recent discussions, and contains a Mathematical Appendix which is a survey of the definitions of all main mathematical concepts used in the book. (shrink)
Open futurism is the indeterministic position according to which the future is ‘open’, i.e., there is now no fact of the matter as to what future contingent events will actually obtain. Many open futurists hold a branching conception of time, in which a variety of possible futures exist. This paper introduces two challenges to branching-time open futurism, which are similar in spirit to a challenge posed by Fine to tense realism. The paper argues that, to address the new challenges, open (...) futurists must adopt an objective, non-perspectival notion of actuality and subscribe to an A-theoretic, dynamic conception of reality. Moreover, given a natural understanding of “actual future”, it is perfectly sensible for open futurists to hold that a unique, objectively actual future exists, contrary to a common assumption in the current debate. The paper also contends that recognising the existence of a unique actual future helps open futurists to avoid potential misconceptions. (shrink)
Notwithstanding the recent prominence of the term “problem” in the humanities, few scholars have analysed its history. This essay tries to partially fill that lack, principally covering the period from late modernity through to the 1960s, in order to understand the role that the term plays in “Continental” philosophy, with special emphasis on the writings of Gilles Deleuze. This analysis focuses on the strategies employed by different agents to define “philosophical” problems, or “philosophical” ways of posing problems. The term, originally (...) used in antiquity by knowledge-producers located in an autonomous position, implied an idea of cognition oscillating between production and reproduction. Once the term escaped the context of geometry, it was involved in symbolic struggles that radicalized during modernity. The Kantians placed “philosophy” in a supposedly neutral position of science treating “the problem of all the problems” and invented a new genre, the “history of philosophy,” focusing on the analysis of “philosophical problems.” This approach had great institutional success in the German and French universities and clashed, during the twentieth century, with another usage of philosophy as a practice of “dissolution of problems,” developed in the United Kingdom and the Austro-Habsburg Empire. (shrink)
This authored monograph introduces a genuinely theoretical approach to biology. Starting point is the investigation of empirical biological scaling including their variability, which is found in the literature, e.g. allometric relationships, fractals, etc. The book then analyzes two different aspects of biological time: first, a supplementary temporal dimension to accommodate proper biological rhythms; secondly, the concepts of protension and retention as a means of local organization of time in living organisms. Moreover, the book investigates the role of symmetry in biology, (...) in view of its ubiquitous importance in physics. In relation with the notion of extended critical transitions, the book proposes that organisms and their evolution can be characterized by continued symmetry changes, which accounts for the irreducibility of their historicity and variability. The authors also introduce the concept of anti-entropy as a measure for the potential of variability, being equally understood as alterations in symmetry. By this, the book provides a mathematical account of Gould's analysis of phenotypic complexity with respect to biological evolution. The target audience primarily comprises researchers interested in new theoretical approaches to biology, from physical, biological or philosophical backgrounds, but the book may also be beneficial for graduate students who want to enter this field. (shrink)
Accidents involving autonomous vehicles raise difficult ethical dilemmas and legal issues. It has been argued that self-driving cars should be programmed to kill, that is, they should be equipped with pre-programmed approaches to the choice of what lives to sacrifice when losses are inevitable. Here we shall explore a different approach, namely, giving the user/passenger the task of deciding what ethical approach should be taken by AVs in unavoidable accident scenarios. We thus assume that AVs are equipped with what we (...) call an “Ethical Knob”, a device enabling passengers to ethically customise their AVs, namely, to choose between different settings corresponding to different moral approaches or principles. Accordingly, AVs would be entrusted with implementing users’ ethical choices, while manufacturers/programmers would be tasked with enabling the user’s choice and ensuring implementation by the AV. (shrink)
Artefacts do not always do what they are supposed to, due to a variety of reasons, including manufacturing problems, poor maintenance, and normal wear-and-tear. Since software is an artefact, it should be subject to malfunctioning in the same sense in which other artefacts can malfunction. Yet, whether software is on a par with other artefacts when it comes to malfunctioning crucially depends on the abstraction used in the analysis. We distinguish between “negative” and “positive” notions of malfunction. A negative malfunction, (...) or dysfunction, occurs when an artefact token either does not or cannot do what it is supposed to. A positive malfunction, or misfunction, occurs when an artefact token may do what is supposed to but, at least occasionally, it also yields some unintended and undesirable effects. We argue that software, understood as type, may misfunction in some limited sense, but cannot dysfunction. Accordingly, one should distinguish software from other technical artefacts, in view of their design that makes dysfunction impossible for the former, while possible for the latter. (shrink)
Automation and information technology have transformed the organization of labor to such an extent that the processes of exploitation have moved beyond the labor class and now work upon society as a whole. If this displacement has destroyed the political primacy of the labor class, it has not, however, eliminated exploitation; rather, it has broadened it, implanting it within the given conditions of the most diverse spheres of society. -- from The Winter Is Over In late 1995, in opposition to (...) the conservative agenda of Jacques Chirac and his prime minister Alain Juppé and their proposed widespread welfare cuts, French students rose up against their government; public sector workers, together with all the major trade unions, went on strike. When railway workers and Paris Metro personnel joined in the protests, France's public transportation system came to a halt. These extensive social upheavals, the likes of which had not been seen in France since 1968, found widespread public support and fuelled the creation of many political organizations. Chirac backed down from restructuring the public retirement system. Antonio Negri's _T_he Winter is Over comes out of the glimmer of optimism created by the events of 1995, when the long, cold season of neoliberalism, Thatcherism, Reaganomics, reaction, and counterrevolution appeared to have run its course. Published in Italian in 1996, _The Winter is Over_ brings together a series of articles, speeches, and other documents written by Negri between 1989 and 1995 at the threshold of this thaw. It offers a revealing and wide-reaching account of those years of change and brink-of-change, focusing on such topics as the networks of social production, the decline of "limp thought," the end of applied socialism, the Gulf War, and, finally, Italy's transition to its so-called "Second Republic," as seen by an exile. (shrink)
The _Maimonides Review of Philosophy and Religion_ is an annual collection of double-blind peer-reviewed articles, which seeks to provide a broad international arena for an intellectual exchange of ideas between the disciplines of philosophy, theology, religion, cultural history, and literature and to showcase their multifarious junctures within the framework of Jewish studies.
Es wurde in der Vergangenheit viel darüber debattiert, ob das Zentrum der Kritik der reinen Vernunft in der Erkenntnistheorie der „Transzendentalen Analytik“ oder in der Metaphysikkritik der „Transzendentalen Dialektik“ liegt. Stellt man den Begriff der Einheit des Bewusstseins in den Mittelpunkt der Auseinandersetzung, dann verliert diese Debatte an Bedeutung. Die „Einheit des Bewusstseins“ ist einerseits von zentraler Wichtigkeit für Kants Theorie der Objektivität, wie er sie in der „Deduktion der Kategorien“ entwickelt. Sie gehört andererseits in die Seelenlehre und wird daher (...) von Kant in den der Rationalen Psychologie gewidmeten Teilen der „Transzendentalen Dialektik“ thematisiert. Die vorliegenden Analysen von Henny Blomme, Bernd Dörflinger, Corey W. Dyck, Dietmar H. Heidemann, Thomas Höwing, Toni Kannisto, Heiner F. Klemme, Rudolf Mösenbacher, Giuseppe Motta, Dennis Schulting, Camilla Serck-Hanssen, Thomas Sturm, Udo Thiel, Violetta Waibel und Falk Wunderlich vertiefen das Verständnis dieses zentralen Begriffes der Kantischen Philosophie. (shrink)
So-called Locke's thesis is the view that no two things of the same kind may coincide, that is, may be completely in the same place at the same time. A number of counter-examples to this view have been proposed. In this paper, some new and arguably more convincing counter-examples to Locke's thesis are presented. In these counter-examples, a particular entity (a string, a rope, a net, or similar) is interwoven to obtain what appears to be a distinct, thicker entity of (...) the same kind. It is argued that anyone who subscribes to certain standard metaphysical arguments, which are generally taken for granted in the debate about Locke's thesis, is virtually compelled to accept the counter-examples. (shrink)
This book proposes a shift in the very concept of neoliberalism as an ambivalent product of subjectivity. It is not resolved in dichotomies between the included and excluded, interior and exterior, capitalist and noncapitalist. Neoliberalism operates in blurred lines, through flexible structures, and amid internal gradients and varying tensions.
The time marked by the clock hands, the so-called “objective time,” is deeply different from the one perceived by the individual. Starting from this hypothesis, directly connected to the subjective modality of “living” the time and defined as time perspective, we will try to understand how much it affects the various domains of people's lives, attitudes, and experiences. Therefore, the research investigates whether all our decisions can be influenced by one or more time perspectives beyond our awareness. Last, but not (...) least, we will try to understand if some time perspectives in specific contexts are more functional and adaptive than others. (shrink)
This paper presents a systematic discussion, mainly for non-economists, on economic approaches to the concept of sustainable development. As a first step, the concept of sustainability is extensively discussed. As a second step, the argument that it is not possible to consider sustainability only from an economic or ecological point of view is defended; issues such as economic-ecological integration, inter-generational and intra-generational equity are considered of fundamental importance. Two different economic approaches to environmental issues, i.e. neo-classical environmental economics and ecological (...) economics, are compared. Some key differences such as weak versus strong sustainability, commensurability versus incommensurability and ethical neutrality versus different values acceptance are pointed out. (shrink)
El artículo aborda el comentario agustiniano a la primera carta de san Juan. Tras una sucinta introducción a la obra de Agustín, presenta los tres tipos de amor de los que en ella habla san Agustín, distinguiendo las connotaciones y características respectivas. Después se ocupa de la unidad de la Iglesia, según aparece en estos tratados, y de las alusiones a los donatistas. Finalmente habla de las cotidianas implicaciones morales del amor.
A familiar theme in Greek philosophy, largely due to the influence of Plato's Cratylus, linguistic naturalism constitutes a major but under-studied area of Roman linguistic thought. Indeed, it holds significance not only for the history of linguistics but also for philosophy, stylistics, rhetoric and more. The chapters in this volume deal with a range of naturalist theories in a variety of authors including Cicero, Varro, Nigidius Figulus, Posidonius, and Dionysius of Halicarnassus. The result is a complex and multi-faceted picture of (...) how language and nature were believed to interrelate in the classical Roman world. (shrink)
This book presents a historical and philosophical analysis of programming systems, intended as large computational systems like, for instance, operating systems, programmed to control processes. The introduction to the volume emphasizes the contemporary need of providing a foundational analysis of such systems, rooted in a broader historical and philosophical discussion. The different chapters are grouped around three major themes. The first concerns the early history of large systems developed against the background of issues related to the growing semantic gap between (...) hardware and code. The second revisits the fundamental issue of complexity of large systems, dealt with by the use of formal methods and the development of `grand designs’ like Unix. Finally, a third part considers several issues related to programming systems in the real world, including chapters on aesthetical, ethical and political issues. This book will interest researchers from a diversity of backgrounds. It will appeal to historians, philosophers, as well as logicians and computer scientists who want to engage with topics relevant to the history and philosophy of programming and more specifically the role of programming systems in the foundations of computing. (shrink)
The moving spotlight account (MS) is a view that combines an eternalist ontology and an A-theoretic metaphysics. The intuition underlying MS is that the present time is somehow privileged and experientially vivid, as if it were illuminated by a moving spotlight. According to MS-theorists, a key reason to prefer MS to B-theoretic eternalism is that our experience of time supports it. We argue that this is false. To this end, we formulate a new family of positions in the philosophy of (...) time, which differ from MS in that, intuitively, they admit a plurality of moving spotlights. We argue that these ‘deviant’ variants of MS cannot be dismissed as conceptually incoherent, and that they are as well-supported by our experience as is MS. One of these variants, however, is consistent with the B-theory. Thus, if our experience of time supports MS, then it supports the B-theory as well. (shrink)
There is wide support in logic, philosophy, and psychology for the hypothesis that the probability of the indicative conditional of natural language, P(if A then B), is the conditional probability of B given A, P(B|A). We identify a conditional which is such that P(if A then B)=P(B|A) with de Finetti's conditional event, B|A. An objection to making this identification in the past was that it appeared unclear how to form compounds and iterations of conditional events. In this paper, we illustrate (...) how to overcome this objection with a probabilistic analysis, based on coherence, of these compounds and iterations. We interpret the compounds and iterations as conditional random quantities which, given some logical dependencies, may reduce to conditional events. We show how the inference to B|A from A and B can be extended to compounds and iterations of both conditional events and biconditional events. Moreover, we determine the respective uncertainty propagation rules. Finally, we make some comments on extending our analysis to counterfactuals. (shrink)
We analyze selected iterated conditionals in the framework of conditional random quantities. We point out that it is instructive to examine Lewis's triviality result, which shows the conditions a conditional must satisfy for its probability to be the conditional probability. In our approach, however, we avoid triviality because the import-export principle is invalid. We then analyze an example of reasoning under partial knowledge where, given a conditional if A then Cas information, the probability of A should intuitively increase. We explain (...) this intuition by making some implicit background information explicit. We consider several iterated conditionals, which allow us to formalize different kinds of latent information. We verify that for these iterated conditionals the prevision is greater than or equal to the probability of A. We also investigate the lower and upper bounds of the Affirmation of the Consequent inference. We conclude our study with some remarks on the supposed "independence" of two conditionals, and we interpret this property as uncorrelation between two random quantities. 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. (shrink)
This paper proposes a critical analysis of that interpretation of the Nāgārjunian doctrine of the two truths as summarized—by both Mark Siderits and Jay L. Garfield—in the formula: “the ultimate truth is that there is no ultimate truth”. This ‘semantic reading’ of Nāgārjuna’s theory, despite its importance as a criticism of the ‘metaphysical interpretations’, would in itself be defective and improbable. Indeed, firstly, semantic interpretation presents a formal defect: it fails to clearly and explicitly express that which it contains logically; (...) the previously mentioned formula must necessarily be completed by: “the conventional truth is that nothing is conventional truth”. Secondly, after having recognized what Siderits’ and Garfield’s analyses contain implicitly, other logical and philological defects in their position emerge: the existence of the ‘conventional’ would appear—despite the efforts of semantic interpreters to demonstrate quite the contrary—definitively inconceivable without the presupposition of something ‘real’; moreover, the number of verses in Nāgārjuna that are in opposition to the semantic interpretation (even if we grant semantic interpreters that these verses do not justify a metaphysical reconstruction of Nagarjuna’s doctrine) would seem too great and significant to be ignored. (shrink)
The dependence on history of both present and future dynamics of life is a common intuition in biology and in humanities. Historicity will be understood in terms of changes of the space of possibilities as well as by the role of diversity in life’s structural stability and of rare events in history formation. We hint to a rigorous analysis of “path dependence” in terms of invariants and invariance preserving transformations, as it may be found also in physics, while departing from (...) the physico-mathematical analyses. The idea is that the invariant traces of the past under organismal or ecosystemic transformations contribute to the understanding of present and future states of affairs. This yields a peculiar form of unpredictability in biology, at the core of novelty formation: the changes of observables and pertinent parameters may depend also on past events. In particular, in relation to the properties of synchronic measurement in physics, the relevance of diachronic measurement in biology is highlighted. This analysis may a fortiori apply to cognitive and historical human dynamics, while allowing to investigate some general properties of historicity in biology. (shrink)
Symmetries play a major role in physics, in particular since the work by E. Noether and H. Weyl in the first half of last century. Herein, we briefly review their role by recalling how symmetry changes allow to conceptually move from classical to relativistic and quantum physics. We then introduce our ongoing theoretical analysis in biology and show that symmetries play a radically different role in this discipline, when compared to those in current physics. By this comparison, we stress that (...) symmetries must be understood in relation to conservation and stability properties, as represented in the theories. We posit that the dynamics of biological organisms, in their various levels of organization, are not just processes, but permanent (extended, in our terminology) critical transitions and, thus, symmetry changes. Within the limits of a relative structural stability (or interval of viability), variability is at the core of these transitions. (shrink)
Die vorliegende Hommage-Schrift hat das Ziel, Hans Albert – einen der bedeutendsten Wissenschaftsphilosophen und der Hauptvertreter des Kritischen Rationalismus im deutschen Sprachraum – durch biographisch-intellektuelle Zeugnisse zu ehren und die Bedeutung seines Denkens würdigend hervorzuheben. Der Band enthält Beiträge von Kollegen, Schülern und Freunden Hans Alberts in deutscher und englischer Sprache, in denen diese in unterschiedlicher Weise über ihre Beziehung zu Hans Albert berichten und beschreiben, inwiefern dessen Version des Kritischen Rationalismus sie beeinflusst hat. Auf diese Weise wird seine Denkrichtung (...) aus der Perspektive verschiedener Fachdisziplinen wie etwa Wissenschaftstheorie, Ökonomie, Jurisprudenz, Soziologie, Psychologie, Ethik und Theologie betrachtet. Die verschiedenen Beiträge beleuchten nicht nur historische Hintergründe und verschiedene Lebensphasen des Geehrten; sie zeichnen auch die Entwicklung seines Denkens nach und machen seine lebhafte Beteiligung an philosophischen und wissenschaftlichen Auseinandersetzungen seiner Zeit nachvollziehbar. Deshalb kann man diese Hommage-Schrift auch als ein Zeitdokument verstehen, in dem nicht nur Hans Alberts intellektuelles Wirken in Erinnerung gerufen, sondern auch sein Leben vergegenwärtigt wird, von seiner Zeit als wissenschaftlicher Assistent bzw. Privatdozent in Köln bis zu seiner Emeritierung in Mannheim und darüber hinaus. (shrink)
Dieses Handbuch bietet einen verlässlichen, systematischen und umfassenden Zugang einerseits zu Leben und Werk Karl Poppers, andererseits zur breiten Wirkung des Philosophen in Wissenschaft, Politik und Gesellschaft.
The constructive reformulation of the semantic theory suggests two basic principles to be assumed: first, the distinction between proper knowledge, expressed in judgemental form, and the assertion conditions for such knowledge; second, ...
This article reflects on a survey carried out at a non-profit organization that deals with health care for oncological terminally ill in order to find out for those who are involved in this project each worker's time projection and well-being class. The survey has pointed out each single team member's time perspective and well-being class and allowed building a pedagogical path for work orientation that has involved the same team members.
A widespread opinion holds that norms and codes of conduct as such can only be established via words, that is, in some lexical form. This perspective can be criticized: some norms produced by human acts are not word-based at all. For example, many norms are actually conveyed through graphics, sounds, a silent gesture. In this article, we will focus on the norms that are created by means of drawings and can be termed “drawn norms” or “graphical norms.” Specifically, we will (...) inquire into the phenomenon of graphical norms with particular regard to traffic signs and land-use plans, and we will discuss the philosophical and legal problems to which these phenomena give rise. (shrink)