Intent and mitigating circumstances play a central role in moral and legal assessments in large-scale industrialized societies. Al- though these features of moral assessment are widely assumed to be universal, to date, they have only been studied in a narrow range of societies. We show that there is substantial cross-cultural variation among eight traditional small-scale societies (ranging from hunter-gatherer to pastoralist to horticulturalist) and two Western societies (one urban, one rural) in the extent to which intent and mitigating circumstances influence (...) moral judgments. Although participants in all societies took such factors into account to some degree, they did so to very different extents, varying in both the types of considerations taken into account and the types of violations to which such considerations were applied. The particular patterns of assessment characteristic of large-scale industrialized societies may thus reflect relatively recently culturally evolved norms rather than inherent features of human moral judgment. (shrink)
What motives underlie the ways humans interact socially? Are these the same for all societies? Are these part of our nature, or influenced by our environments?Over the last decade, research in experimental economics has emphatically falsified the textbook representation of Homo economicus. Literally hundreds of experiments suggest that people care not only about their own material payoffs, but also about such things as fairness, equity and reciprocity. However, this research left fundamental questions unanswered: Are such social preferences stable components of (...) human nature; or, are they modulated by economic, social and cultural environments? Until now, experimental research could not address this question because virtually all subjects had been university students, and while there are cultural differences among student populations throughout the world, these differences are small compared to the full range of human social and cultural environments. A vast amount of ethnographic and historical research suggests that people's motives are influenced by economic, social, and cultural environments, yet such methods can only yield circumstantial evidence about human motives. Combining ethnographic and experimental approaches to fill this gap, this book breaks new ground in reporting the results of a large cross-cultural study aimed at determining the sources of social preferences that underlie the diversity of human sociality. The same experiments which provided evidence for social preferences among university students were performed in fifteen small-scale societies exhibiting a wide variety of social, economic and cultural conditions by experienced field researchers who had also done long-term ethnographic field work in these societies. The findings of these experiments demonstrated that no society in which experimental behaviour is consistent with the canonical model of self-interest. Indeed, results showed that the variation in behaviour is far greater than previously thought, and that the differences between societies in market integration and the importance of cooperation explain a substantial portion of this variation, which individual-level economic and demographic variables could not. Finally, the extent to which experimental play mirrors patterns of interaction found in everyday life is traced.The book starts with a succinct but substantive introduction to the use of game theory as an analytical tool and its use in the social sciences for the rigorous testing of hypotheses about fundamental aspects of social behaviour outside artificially constructed laboratories. The results of the fifteen case studies are summarized in a suggestive chapter about the scope of the project. (shrink)
Researchers from across the social sciences have found consistent deviations from the predictions of the canonical model of self-interest in hundreds of experiments from around the world. This research, however, cannot determine whether the uniformity results from universal patterns of human behavior or from the limited cultural variation available among the university students used in virtually all prior experimental work. To address this, we undertook a cross-cultural study of behavior in ultimatum, public goods, and dictator games in a range of (...) small-scale societies exhibiting a wide variety of economic and cultural conditions. We found, first, that the canonical model – based on self-interest – fails in all of the societies studied. Second, our data reveal substantially more behavioral variability across social groups than has been found in previous research. Third, group-level differences in economic organization and the structure of social interactions explain a substantial portion of the behavioral variation across societies: the higher the degree of market integration and the higher the payoffs to cooperation in everyday life, the greater the level of prosociality expressed in experimental games. Fourth, the available individual-level economic and demographic variables do not consistently explain game behavior, either within or across groups. Fifth, in many cases experimental play appears to reflect the common interactional patterns of everyday life. Key Words: altruism; cooperation; cross-cultural research; experimental economics; game theory; ultimatum game; public goods game; self-interest. (shrink)
Today there are over 90,000 Small Christian Communities in the eight AMECEA countries in Eastern Africa. Kenya alone has over 35,000 SCCs.Increasingly SCCs are promoting reconciliation, justice and peace, the three main themes of 2009 Second African Synod. This essay treats the following headings: “Tracking the Historical Shifts of SCCs,” “SCCs’ Increasing Involvement in Justice and Peace Issues,” “Case Study of SCC Involvement in the Kenya Lenten Campaigns 2009 and 2010,” “Involving Youth in Small Christian Communities,” “SCCs Using the Internet (...) Especially Facebook” and “SCCs as Facilitators of Reconciliation, Justice and Peace in Africa.” One major change is the increasing use of a Pastoral Theological Reflection Process such as the “Pastoral Circle” to help SCCs to go deeper. Now more and more SCCs in Africa are reflecting pastorally and theologically on their experiences, often using the tools of social analysis. (shrink)
The general topic I am addressing concerns the epistemological role of the use of metaphor in the philosophy of science. More specifically, I am concerned with the role metaphor plays in scientific and technological change. In the case in point, nanotechnology, I will explore the role of metaphor in changing our conception of the confirmation of the plausibility of theoretical notions. The basic idea is that metaphors either offer or suggest images that are meant to persuade one to change one’s (...) belief. Thus the confirmatory role is variable.. (shrink)
The question is how do Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEMs) give us access to the nano world? The images these instruments produce, I argue, do not allow us to see atoms in the same way that we see trees. To the extent that SEMs and STMs allow us to see the occupants of the nano world it is by way of metaphorical extension of the concept of “seeing”. The more general claim is that changes in scientific instrumentation effect changes in the (...) concepts central to our understanding of scientific results. (shrink)
Joseph Agassi is a critic, a gadfly, a debunker and deflater; he is also a constructor, a speculator and an imaginative scholaro In the history and philosophy of science, he has been Peck's bad boy, delighting in sharp and pungent criticism, relishing directness and simplicity, and enjoying it all enormously. As one of that small group of Popper's students (ineluding Bartley, Feyerabend and Lakatos) who took Popper seriously enough to criticize him, Agassi remained his own man, holding Popper's work (...) itself to the criteria of critical refutation. Agassi's range is wide and his publications proliik. He has published serious studies in the historiography of science, applied sociology (on Hong Kong with LC. Jarvie), foundations of anthropology, interpretive scientific biography (Faraday), Judaic studies, philosophy of technology (which Agassi pioneered, particulady in distinguishing it from the philosophy of science), as weIl as the many works on the Iogic, methodoI ogy, and history of science. Even as we go to press, Agassi's works are appearing; we append an imperfect and selected bibliography. For Agassi, the test of relevance is whether something is interesting. (shrink)
According to Mark Rubinstein ‘In 1952, anticipating Kenneth Arrow and John Pratt by over a decade, he [de Finetti] formulated the notion of absolute risk aversion, used it in connection with risk premia for small bets, and discussed the special case of constant absolute risk aversion.’ The purpose of this note is to ascertain the extent to which this is true, and at the same time, to correct certain minor errors that appear in de Finetti's work.
Research on teams and teamwork has flourished in the last few decades. Much of what we know about teams and teamwork comes from research using short-term student teams in the lab, teams in larger organizations, and, more recently, teams in rather unique and extreme environments. The context in which teams operate influences team composition, processes, and effectiveness. Small organizations are an understudied and often overlooked context that presents a rich opportunity to augment our understanding of teams and team dynamics. In (...) this paper, we discuss how teams and multi-team systems in small organizations may differ from those found in larger organizations. Many of these differences present both methodological and practical challenges to studying team composition and processes in small complex organizational settings. We advocate for applying and accepting new and less widely used methodological approaches to advance our understanding of the science of teams and teamwork in such contexts. (shrink)
What is the distribution of cognitive ability within the animal kingdom? It would be egalitarian to assume that variation in intelligence is everywhere clinal, but examining trends among major phylogenetic groups, it becomes easy to distinguish high-performing ‘generalists’ – whose behavior exhibits domain-flexibility – from ‘specialists’ whose range of behavior is limited and ecologically specific. These generalists include mammals, birds, and, intriguingly, cephalopods. The apparent intelligence of coleoid cephalopods (squids, octopuses, and cuttlefish) is surprising – and philosophically relevant – because (...) of our independent evolutionary lineages: the most recent common ancestor between vertebrates and cephalopods would have been a small wormlike organism, without any major organizational structure to its nervous system. By identifying the cognitive similarities between these organisms and vertebrates, we can begin to derive some general principles of intelligence as a biological phenomenon. Here, I discuss trends in cephalopod behavior and surrounding theory, and suggest their significance for our understanding of domain-general cognition and its evolution. (shrink)
The vast majority of health research resources are used to study conditions that affect a small, advantaged portion of the global population. This distribution has been widely criticized as inequitable and threatens to exacerbate health disparities. However, there has been little systematic work on what individual health research funders ought to do in response. In this article, we analyze the general and special duties of research funders to the different populations that might benefit from health research. We assess how these (...) duties apply to governmental, multilateral, nonprofit, and for-profit organizations. We thereby derive a framework for how different types of funders should take the beneficiaries of research into account when they allocate scarce research resources. (shrink)
This paper answers two questions. First, on the assumption that risk of harm is of moral significance, does risk’s moral significance lay in its being harmful? Second, is risk of harm itself harmful? I argue that either risk is not harmful or that risk is harmful only in a small range of cases. If risk is not harmful, and yet risk is of moral significance, risk’s moral significance cannot lie in its being harmful. And if risk is harmful only in (...) a small range of the cases in which risk is of moral significance, risk’s moral significance cannot lie in its being harmful. (shrink)
Wolfgang Stegmüller, the leading German philosopher of science, considers the status of scientific revolutions the central issue in the field ever since "the famous Popper-Lakatos-Kuhn discussion" of a decade and a half ago, comments on "almost all contributions to this problem", and offers his alternative solutions in a series of papers culminating with, and summarized in, his recent "A Combined Approach to Dynamics of Theories. How To Improve Historical Interpretations of Theory Change By Applying Set Theoretical Structures", published in Gerard (...) Radnitzky and Gunnar Andersson, editors, The Structure and Development of Science, issued in the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science series, volume 59, 1979, pp. 151-86. Popper views scientific revolutions as rational and due to empirical refutations, but there are no refutations in science. Lakatos agrees and assumes that research programs are refutable and their replacements to be revolutions, but the same arguments he launches against Popper apply to him; moreover, applying his philosophy to itself makes it collapse anyway . Kuhn's view was interpreted to be one of scientific revolutions as quite irrational and as arbitrary as mob action. Stegmüller presents revolution in another interpretation of Kuhn - as non-rational, as based on hopes and value judgment but not on facts. He thinks there are big and small revolutions. And he uses his own modifications of J. D. Sneed's famous formal analysis of scientific theory to make his point. After presenting a summary of Stegmüller's ideas in our own way, which seems to us a clarification of presentation with no change of content, especially due to our stressing all differences of opinion, we apply Stegmüller's idea to itself, the way Stegmüller has done with the view of Lakatos, and with similar results. (shrink)
This paper discusses collaborative learning and its use in an elective course on ethics in engineering. Collaborative learning is a form of active learning in which students learn with and from one another in small groups. The benefits of collaborative learning include improved student performance and enthusiasm for learning, development of communication skills, and greater student appreciation of the importance of judgment and collaboration in solving real-world problems such as those encountered in engineering ethics. Collaborative learning strategies employed in the (...) course include informal small group discussions/problem solving, role-playing exercises, and cooperative student group projects, including peer grading. Student response to these techniques has been highly favorable. Realizing the benefits of collaborative learning is a challenge to both teachers, who must give up some control in the classroom, and students, who must be willing to take greater responsibility for their learning. (shrink)
It may be objected that musical analysts claim to be working with objective methodologies which leave no place for aesthetic criteria, for the consideration of value. If that were the case, the reluctance of so many writers to subsume analysis under criticism might be understandable. But are these claims true? Are they, indeed, even seriously entered?Certainly the original masters of analysis left no doubt that for them analysis was an essential adjunct to a fully articulated aesthetic value system. Heinrich Schenker (...) always insisted on the superiority of the towering products of the German musical genius. Sir Donald Tovey pontificated about "the main stream of music" and on occasion developed this metaphor in considerable detail. It is only in more recent times that analysts have avoided value judgments and adapted their work to a format of strictly corrigible propositions, mathematical equations, set-theory formulations, and the like—all this, apparently, in an effort to achieve the objective status and hence the authority of scientific inquiry. Articles on music composed after 1950, in particular, appear sometimes to mimic scientific papers in the way that South American bugs and flies will mimic the dreaded carpenter wasp. In a somewhat different adaptation, the distinguished analyst Allen Forte wrote an entire small book, The Compositional Matrix, from which all affective or valuational terms are meticulously excluded. The same tendency is evident in much recent periodical literature.Joseph Kerman, professor of music at the University of California at Berkeley, has been the editor of Nineteenth-Century Music. His books include Opera as Drama, The Elizabethan Madrigal, The Beethoven Quartets, Listen , and The Masses and Motets of William Byrd. (shrink)
_Strategies of Deconstruction _ was first published in 1991. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions. In the past two decades, the "movement" of deconstruction has bad tremendous impact on a number of academic, disciplines in the United States. However, its force has been rather limited in the field of philosophy, despite the fact that in Europe the practice of deconstruction emerged in (...) the work of philosophers. Although the reasons for this can be debated, two of the more obvious explanations are the mainstream Anglo-American philosophers rarely studied the German and French philosophical traditions in great detail, and deconstruction's focus on discourse and interpretation has made it more attractive to the literary and humanistic disciplines. With this context, _Strategies of Deconstruction _ focuses on the early work of Jacques Derrida, the French philosopher who introduced deconstruction in _Speech and Phenomena_,his study of Edmund Husserl, and _Of Grammatology_, and whose philosophical reputation stems in no small part from his work on Husserl. In examining the philosophical import of Derrida's theories of reading, text, and language, specifically as they related to _Speech and Phenomena_,J. Claude Evans makes careful reference to Husserl's own texts. His analysis indicates that there are many systematic irregularities in Derrida's study and that without those irregularities Derrida's conclusions cannot be substantiated. (shrink)
The field of “business for peace” recognizes the role that businesses can play in peacebuilding. However, like much of the discussion concerning business in conflict zones, it has prioritized the view of multinationals, often overlooking the role of indigenous local firms. The economic, social, and intergroup dynamics experienced by local businesses in conflict zones are understudied, with the current paper beginning by positioning micro- and small enterprises in the peacebuilding debate, then engaging with multidisciplinary works to understand how they foster (...) peace. Through a case study set in north Lebanon, we conducted semi-structured interviews with twenty-three MSE owners in one industry who operate across sectarian divisions and with recently displaced Syrian refugees. Our findings indicate that local business activity can simultaneously promote peace and foster conflict, with peacebuilding improved when intergroup differences are reduced within the operating environment. Furthermore, the importance of economic development was elevated for local businesses, suggesting that peace through mechanisms such as social development, the rule of law, and training, is only achieved if economic needs are alleviated through these measures. We conclude by citing how contextual factors in conflict zones can enhance intergroup differences, and how resolving such factors can promote peacebuilding, with further empirical work needed in this area. (shrink)
Science uses its firmest conclusions to arrive at new ones which may well completely destroy these, previously firmest, conclusions. The perceptive may notice that when the previously firmest conclusions are demolished we may remain in the dark with no conclusion worth replacing it with. But only when we replace it with a firmer conclusion can we speak of a bootstrap operation rather than of a refutations. Often, to conclude, the ad hoc nature of a fact-like statement is rooted in the (...) theoretical background against which it is couched; given a different theoretical background and it fully falls into place, as the expression goes. If an observation report is at once a corollary of our scientific theory, then it is unproblematic. If it conflicts with our scientific theory, either we reject the theory or try to find an excuse for not rejecting it. When, however, a small theory which well integrates in our theoretical background is attacked by a well corroborated fact-like theory and all its defences are refuted, then a revolution may be under way. Such events may be rare, but they are the more interesting ones. At times we alter our whole theoretical outlook around a rather fact-like theory which then gets refuted. We then look silly from any viewpoint except that which takes the process to be a bootstrap operation! (shrink)
In a small portion of The Origin of German Tragic Drama, Walter Benjamin engages in a critique of Nietzsche’s understanding of tragedy in The Birth of Tragedy. He argues that Nietzsche’s account divests individuals of significance in the tragic worldview. The corrective to Nietzsche’s view, according to Benjamin, is a reflective, historical approach to the Greek social and literary phenomenon of tragic poetry. I argue that Benjamin’s approach to tragedy and to The Birth of Tragedy is inherently flawed. The paper (...) has threesections: a presentation of Benjamin’s critique of Nietzsche in The Origin of German Tragic Drama; a refutation of that critique on the basis of a reading of The Birth of Tragedy; and a rejection of Benjamin’s theory of tragedy on the basis of Nietzsche’sinsights into the relation to human significance of both tragedy and the science of history. (shrink)
Excerpt from Scepsis Scientifica: Or, Confest Ignorance, the Way to Science; In an Essay of the Vanity of Dogmatizing, and Confident Opinion He seems to have been brought up, if not as an extreme sectary, at least in some school of Puritanism which allowed small scope for independent judgment. Thus he tells us, in his "Plus Ultra" (p. 142): "In my first education I was continually instructed into a religious and fast adherence to everything I was taught, and a dread (...) of disputing in the least article," - a mode of education which he was wont in after life vehemently to denounce. He entered the University of Oxford in 1652, and took his degree three years after. In the dearth of more direct information, his love of culture and mental independence may fairly be inferred from his associates. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works. (shrink)
Joseph Burney Trapp, a Fellow of the British Academy, was librarian; editor and teacher; scholar of humanism, letters, and the humanities; and an enlightened but efficient administrator. His career, or rather his life from first encounter, was bound up with the Warburg Institute in London. Trapp was born in New Zealand, at Carterton, near Wellington, on July 16, 1925. His maternal grandfather had founded an agency there for registering and distributing land tenure, which his father, Burney Trapp, had joined. (...) Trapp attended Dannevirke School, a small state boarding school where his elder sister Phyllis taught English. He went on, with a national scholarship, to Victoria University College, Wellington, graduating in 1946 in English and Greek, with subsidiary qualifications in Latin and French. From the late 1950s, Thomas More's work, both in English and Latin, became a preoccupation. It was at this time that Trapp was commissioned to edit the volume on the Apology for the Complete Works of More for Yale University Press. (shrink)
Introduction : the faces of merit -- Republic of merit -- Merit and the culture of public life -- Small worlds : competition in the colleges -- Making the grade : managed competition and schooling -- The scientific measurement of merit -- The "presumption of merit" : institutionalizing merit -- Squeeze play : merit in government -- Merit in crisis -- Epilogue : merit, equality, consent.
Shows how, as a consequence of the Arrow Impossibility Theorem, objectivity in grading is chimerical, given a sufficiently knowledgeable teacher (of his students, not his subject) in a sufficiently small class. -/- PDF available from JStor only; permission to post full version previously granted by journal editors and publisher expired. -/- Unpublished reply posted gratis.
One of the most commonly observed peculiarities of the instrumental conception of rationality is that when applied in contexts of social interaction it sometimes prescribes actions that will predictably result in suboptimal outcomes. Often these outcomes could be avoided if agents were able to credibly commit themselves to refraining from exercising certain options available to them. The prisoners’ dilemma is the classic example. This problem has generated a small growth industry of attempts to modify the instrumental model in order to (...) incorporate commitments. The reason that philosophers are so attracted to this project is that it seems to offer them an opportunity to ﬁnish off the job that Socrates began, viz. to refute moral skepticism of the ‘rational egoist’ variety.1 None of this has worked very well, but enthusiasm for the project appears to continue unabated. (shrink)
Rachlin's view of self-control as a sequence or chain of behaviors is contrasted with traditional behavioral analyses of self-control which emphasize a simplistic interpretation of the hyperbolic function relating small-sooner (SS) and larger-later (LL) reinforcers to specific behaviors. The validity of Rachlin's teleological analysis is examined in relation to the acquisition and steady-state performance of self-control behaviors. Central to an analysis of self-control is the functional difference between behavior under the control of SS and LL reinforcers, because SS-reinforced behavior is (...) more complex due to temporal parameters. (shrink)
Then it agrees or disagrees with what he says, as needed, for reasons of various sorts, whether philosophical, theological, scientific, historical, etc. - of whatever sort, just so long as they are relevant and cogent; to do these things as well as possible, if only in a small way - pro nostro modulo, as Aquinas puts it, in describing what he intends to do as the author of the Summa Contra Gentiles.
: Newhard recommends that anarcho-capitalist societies acquire nuclear weapons and adopt aggressive territorial-defense postures. This paper substantiates the argument for the necessity of such actions under reasonable assumptions. In particular, these societies are likely to be relatively small in geographic size, population, and economic output, inhibiting strategic depth and military spending. Deterrence and defense will […].