Gregory Bateson developed his transdisciplinary thinking in the shadow of sociology, but his ideas are not generally viewed as part of the field of classical sociology. This article will explain this exclusion by arguing that Bateson’s way of theorising – while attempting to make progress in the understanding of reality – returns to ideas that were already rejected within the field in which he first worked. Furthermore, as a reading of Bateson through the lens of Durkheim will show, Bateson’s theories (...) fail to provide a better understanding of social reality than those of his predecessors. This type of critical analysis demonstrates the weakness of some of Bateson’s central claims and contributes to a more in-depth understanding and reassessment of his ideas from a sociological perspective. Pointing out that Bateson’s critique of the modern worldview is based on a pre-critical and pre-modern philosophy of wholeness is not to invalidate Bateson’s foundational intuition that our current mode of thinking challenges our chances of surviving as a species. However, in order to make a theoretically convincing argument concerning how our thinking challenges our survival, a more critical understanding of the relation between mind and society than the one Bateson offers is required. (shrink)
While the influence of classical philosophy on sociology has been the subject of several studies, less attention has been given to the question of how the founders of sociology viewed classical philosophy. This article discusses Émile Durkheim’s account of the historical role of Greek philosophy as described in his lectures on The Evolution of Educational Thought. It demonstrates how Durkheim makes several erroneous claims concerning Greek morality that, taken together, produced a stereotyped image of the Greeks as intellectual giants but (...) moral dwarfs. Downplaying the historical role of Greek morality, Durkheim attributes one of the most important social facts in connection with the development of Western moral individualism – the inward-oriented morality – to the innovative power of Christian religion. Despite this bias, the great twentieth-century interpreters of social thought, such as Talcott Parsons, Steven Lukes and Robert A. Jones, have continually referred to Durkheim’s historical analyses without questioning his assertions. Sociologists need to cease citing Durkheim as an authority on moral education in the classical world inasmuch as so many of his claims promote a false image of Greek morality and education. (shrink)
This article discusses how the results of infant research challenge the assumptions of the classical sciences of social behaviour. According to A.J. Bergesen, the findings of infant research invalidate Durkheim's theory of mental categories, thus requiring a re-theorizing of sociology. This article argues that Bergesen's reading of Emile Durkheim is incorrect, and his review of the infant research in fact invalidates his argument. Reviewing the assumptions of sociology in the light of the findings of infant research, it is argued that (...) the real challenge is to formulate a research strategy that combines the findings of the two sciences. (shrink)
The aim of John Searle’s philosophy of society is to provide a foundation for the social sciences. Arguing that the study of social reality needs to be based on a philosophy of language, Searle claims that sociology has little to offer since no sociologist ever took language seriously. Attacking Durkheim head-on, Searle not only claims that Durkheim’s project differs from his own but also that Durkheim’s sociology has serious shortcomings. Opposing Searle, this paper argues that Durkheim’s account of social reality (...) is still viable and that Searle’s attack backfires on his own theoretical project. (shrink)
Kantian Deeds revokes and renews the tradition of Kant's moral philosophy. Through a novel reading of contemporary approaches to Kant, Henrik Bjerre draws a new map of the human capacity for morality. Morality consists of two different abilities that are rarely appreciated at the same time. Human beings are brought up and initiated into a moral culture, which gives them the cognitive mapping necessary to act morally and responsibly. They also, however, acquire an ability to reach beyond that which (...) is considered moral and thus develop an ability to reinterpret or break 'normal' morality. By drawing on two very different resources in contemporary philosophy - more conservative trends in analytic philosophy and more radical sources in recent works of psychoanalytically informed philosophy - and claiming that they must be read together, Kantian Deeds provides a new understanding of what is termed 'the structure of moral revolutions'. Essentially, deeds are revolutionary changes of moral character that can only be performed by such creatures that have acquired one. (shrink)
The essay presents Giorgio Agamben’s theory of the paradigm in the first chapter of The Signature of All Things. On Method in order to better understand the well-known use of references to and qoutations from literature in philosophical reasoning and theory. Agamben’s uncommented reference to two short stanzas from Wallace Stevens’ poem “Description without Place”, which he consider the best definition of a paradigmatic ontology, is briefly commented. A gathering of three ‘literary singularities’ from Friedrich Hölderlin/Sophocles, James Joyce, and Samuel (...) Beckett in a suggested paradigm on time is presented as an example of a solely literary way of philosophical thinking. (shrink)
THE WORK OF ART AS COUNTER-VALUE: ASGER JORN'S CRITIQUE OF MARX'S ECONOMISK VALUE-THINKING IN CAPITALAs one of the rather significant and influential Modernist and Avant-garde artists of the 20th century Asger Jorn is internationally well-known and admired. Lesser known – or lesser accepted in the reception of his work – is the fact that his many critical writings on art, philosophy, and politics as well as his archives and political activism are integrated and important parts of his entire artwork. For (...) the first time in the reception of Jorn’s critical thinking the essay examines his Situationist criticism of Marx’ concepts of value, as outlined in the commodity analysis in Capital vol. 1, by regarding it a crucial example of his understanding of counter value as the only or most prominent quality of the artwork as such. (shrink)
Whereas previous research has focused on the link between workload and task performance, less is known about the intervening mechanisms influencing this relationship. In the present study, we test the moderating roles of daily recovery and total sleep time in the relationship between work pressure and daily task performance. Using performance and recovery theories, we hypothesized that work pressure relates positively to daily task performance, and that both daily recovery in the form of psychological detachment and relaxation, and total sleep (...) time independently enhance this relationship. Our hypotheses were tested in a 30-day diary study with 110 officer cadets on a cross-Atlantic voyage on a Naval sail ship. The results of multilevel modeling lend support to all three hypotheses. Taken together, our findings suggest that recovery and sleep duration between shifts play a key role in the relationship between daily work pressure and task performance. We discuss the implications of these findings for the stressor-detachment model. (shrink)
Philosophy, Theory and Criminal Law: A Review of Fran?ois Tanguay-Renaud and James Stribopoulos , Rethinking Criminal Law Theory: New Canadian Perspectives in the Philosophy of Domestic, Transnational and International Criminal Law.
No. Animals' primary problem is the shaping of movements, guided by and adapting to sensory signals. This requires a narrower class of biorobotic models than that spanned by Webb's dimensions and examples. We claim that all model variables and mechanisms must have real counterparts, input vectors must model known sensor fields, internal state vectors and transformations must model neurophysiological processes, and output vectors must model coordinated muscle signals.
In this paper, we argue that the widespread practice in the United States of busing voters to the polling station on Election Day is an instance of paying people to vote. We defend a definition of what it means to pay people to vote, and on this definition, busing voters to the polling station is an instance of paying people to vote. Paying people to vote is illegal according to United States federal election law. However, the United States courts have (...) historically considered the practice of busing voters to the polling station legally permissible. The United States legal system, therefore, faces a dilemma: either the courts must change their interpretation of current federal election law such that busing voters to the polling station is a violation of federal election law, or federal election law must be changed so that at least some instances of paying people to vote are legally permissible. We argue that choosing either horn of the dilemma has a controversial implication for the United States legal system. (shrink)
Avec son livre r cent, Locke and French materialism (Oxford 1991), John Yolton - connu de longue date pour avoir le premier focalis le contexte th ologique et moral du nouveau 'way of ideas' chez Locke - a donn le signal de d part d'une exploration de la place de Locke dans la lutte philosophique en France au dix-septi me si cle. Prenant acte que le th me, pourtant majeur, des id es inn es dans la r ception fran aise (...) de Locke n'a pas encore re u l'attention qu'il m rite, le pr sent livre poursuit une analyse approfondie de la fortune de la pol mique contre les id es inn es chez les philosophes fran ais, de Jean Le Clerc (1688) Saint-Lambert (1801). Apr s une pr sentation du sc nario mis en place au dix-septi me si cle (Descartes, Malebranche, Locke), on suit dans un ordre chronologique l' volution de la critique des id es inn es chez les philosophes fran ais jusqu' la defense d'une tabula rasaabsolue la fin du si cle (Helv tius, d'Holbach), passant par plusieurs tapes qui marquent chacune la fois un aboutissement et un nouveau point de d part dans la radicalisation progressive du leitmotiv lanc par Locke: consid r es comme le pilier m me de la m taphysique chr tienne, les id es inn es sont d nonc es de fa on de plus en plus radicale, d'abord dans le Refuge, ensuite en France sur une route jalonn e d'affaires' (Voltaire 1734, Prades 1751, Helv tius 1758, d'Holbach 1770). Or, si la pol mique contre les id es inn es semble voluer selon une logique interne n cessaire, ce livre d voile en m me temps l'existence d'une critique des id es inn es plus proche de la cause apolog tique par son souci de pr server l'immat rialit de l' me, l'existence de Dieu et celle d'une loi naturelle (morale) objective et absolue. Enfin, on voit par les r sultats de cette enqu te comment, aujourd'hui, le d bat entre l'inn et l'acquis, toujours d'actualit, trouve ses origines dans l'histoire retrac e ici - comme d'ailleurs plus g n ralement la s cularisation et ses diff rents avatars, mat rialisme, nihilisme, ath isme. Remerciements. (shrink)
This article defends the conclusion that the soccer World Cup in Qatar should not be boycotted by rich countries from the Global North. This conclusion is underpinned by considerations about the economic background conditions in guest workers’ home countries. Three arguments are considered for the view that the World Cup should be boycotted. It is argued that each of these arguments is unsound. Section 7 contains a discussion of an argument for a boycott that centers on the process through which (...) Qatar was awarded the World Cup. This argument is rejected. The article lists several ways in which guest workers in Qatar are wronged, but this fact about how guest workers are treated does not justify a boycott by rich countries from the Global North. (shrink)
Cette monumentale bibliographie, commencée en 1975, ne peut que forcer l'admiration. Offrant pour la première fois une description détaillée et systématique de toutes les éditions et traductions des œuvres de Locke entre 1654 et 1800, elle sera désormais incontournable pour tout travail sérieux sur l'histoire de la pensée du philosophe anglais.
Cette monumentale bibliographie, commencée en 1975, ne peut que forcer l’admiration. Offrant pour la première fois une description détaillée et systématique de toutes les éditions et traductions des œuvres de Locke entre 1654 et 1800, elle sera désormais incontournable pour tout travail sérieux sur l’histoire de la pensée du philosophe anglais. Christophersen, dont la bibliographie est restée pendant presque soixante ans la référence principale, avait bien compris la nécessité de faire un travail plus complet et plus systématique que le sien, (...) et appelant de ses vœux «a better qualified scholar», il précisait l’importance d’une telle entreprise. (shrink)
Many professional football clubs in Europe have youth academies. The business model of such academies is that a club invests resources in training a player and then, when the player is old enough to sign an adult contract, either sells the player or offers him an adult contract. According to Fédération Internationale De Football Association (FIFA), international transfers of players are only permitted if the player is over the age of 18. There are five exceptions to this rule. One of (...) them is that if the player is between 16 and 18 and the transfer takes place within the territory of the European Economic Area (EEA), then an international transfer is allowed. This article is a discussion of the FIFA rules that mandate non-uniform age limits for when players can first transfer to clubs within the EEA area. The conclusion of the article is that FIFA is morally unjustified in setting a higher minimum age for transfer to EEA clubs for non-EEA players than for EEA players. The article first develops an argument for its conclusion. It then discusses, and rejects, the five best objections to this argument. (shrink)
This two-part study examined if the buffering effect of transformational leadership on the association between work-related ambiguity and job satisfaction is contingent upon whether a follower holds a formal leadership position him/herself. Data from two separate surveys were employed: Study 1: A sample of 845 respondents from Belgium. Study 2: A national probability sample of 1,608 Norwegian employees. Study 1 showed that task ambiguity had a significant negative relation with job satisfaction, but that transformational leadership did only buffer the association (...) between task ambiguity and job satisfaction among employees holding a formal position as a supervisor or manager. Study 2 extended Study 1 by adjusting for age and job tenure of subordinates as a confounding variable. Study 2 confirmed that transformational leadership had a significantly stronger impact on the observed association between role ambiguity and job satisfaction among respondents holding a supervisor or manager position. In conclusion, when considering job satisfaction as an outcome of work-related ambiguity, transformational leadership is mainly beneficial for followers holding a formal supervisor or manager position themselves. Our findings thereby question assumptions about the general effectiveness of transformational leadership. (shrink)
In the literature on global justice, there has been a lengthy debate about what the world’s rich owe to the world’s poor. Some have argued that rich individuals have positive duties of beneficence to help the poor, while others have argued that rich individuals only have negative duties not to harm them. A common objection to the former view is that once it is accepted that positive duties exist, fulfilling these duties will be overdemanding since rich individuals can almost always (...) help a little more. Some have tried to overcome this overdemandingness objection by setting cut-off points for how demanding morality is. In this article, we aim to show that it is problematic to be committed to the following propositions: (1) Positive duties to aid exist; (2) The overdemandingness objection is a serious challenge for anyone who accepts that positive duties to aid exist; and (3) Setting cut-off points for how demanding morality is constitutes a plausible way to overcome the overdemandingness objection. Showing that a commitment to (1), (2) and (3) is problematic is of interest given that several influential theorists are committed to this set of views. This set of views is simply a bad theoretical cocktail. (shrink)
Søren Kierkegaard (1813-55) was an almost unbelievably prolific writer. At his death he left not only a massive body of published work (25 volumes in the recently completed Princeton University Press edition), but also a sprawling mass of unpublished writings that rivaled the size of the published corpus. This book tells the story of the peculiar fate of this portion of Kierkegaard's literary remains, which flowed ceaselessly from his steel pen from his late teens to a week before his death. (...) It is the story of packets and sacks of paper covered with words and images that, after a vagabond existence in various homes, finally landed at the Royal Danish Library, where they are today guarded with great care. Readers are also introduced to a selection of this enormous body of material, including drawings and doodlings (often human profiles with high foreheads) that escaped from Kierkegaard's pen in unguarded moments and complement the allure of the philosopher's strikingly variable, elusive handwriting. The authors of this book are among the editors of a modern critical edition of Kierkegaard's oeuvre currently being produced in Copenhagen. By the end of his life Kierkegaard had become a controversial figure, engaged in a furious assault upon "Christendom." From the very moment of their discovery in the days following his death, the unpublished words and images constituted a highly problematic bonanza, an intellectual and religious hot potato (or sack of potatoes) that was passed from hand to hand, suppressed, selectively and tendentiously published and republished. Written Images offers readers a fascinating tour of the misadventures of these written images that will, finally, soon be published in their entirety. (shrink)
Semantic theories that violate semantic innocence, that is require reference shifts when terms are embedded in ‘that’ clauses and the like, are often challenged by producing sentences where an anaphoric expression, while not itself embedded in a context in which reference shifts, is anaphoric on an antecedent expression that is embedded in such a context. This, in conjunction with a widely accepted principle concerning unproblematic anaphora (the ‘Principle of Anaphoric Reference’), is used to show that such reference shifting has absurd (...) consequences. We show that it is the widely accepted principle concerning anaphora that is to be blamed for these consequences and not the supposed sin of reference shifting. (shrink)