In this article, our starting point is that people who are plagued by the so-called meat paradox must find ways of making meat consumption safe from the realities of meat production. They do this by way of various mechanisms of denial, which obfuscate contemporary industrial meat production. We focus on how advertisements become one notable vehicle of such denial, and select three examples for close reading. Focusing on the rhetorical techniques employed in three Norwegian ads for meat and how they (...) mediate meat production to consumers, we argue that these ads all present an image of meat producers as progressive and caring proponents of animal welfare. This leads us to suggest that they exemplify a variant of greenwashing that we dub “welfare washing”—the main message of which is to keep calm and carry on consuming meat. (shrink)
This paper explores the ethical aspects of an investigation into a forester's perception of his landscape. Three different ethical issues are addressed. The first issue concerns the ethics associated with the methodology of ethnology. The second concerns a forester's ethics. An example is provided which indicates how he applies values and aesthetics to the landscape in which he lives and works. Finally, the ethics of wilderness is discussed, concentrating on the different ways in which people perceive wilderness and wilderness issues, (...) depending on their relationship with the forest landscape. The article concludes by questioning whether the ways in which wilderness is culturally constructed can lead to misconceptions about human-forest interaction, and by asking whether emphasis on wilderness as a positive value has been exaggerated. (shrink)
We frequently speak of certain things or phenomena being built out of or based in others. Making Things Up concerns these relations, which connect more fundamental things to less fundamental things: Karen Bennett calls these 'building relations'. She aims to illuminate what it means to say that one thing is more fundamental than another.
Drawing on insights from causal theories of reference, teleosemantics, and state space semantics, a theory of naturalized mental representation. In A Mark of the Mental, Karen Neander considers the representational power of mental states—described by the cognitive scientist Zenon Pylyshyn as the “second hardest puzzle” of philosophy of mind. The puzzle at the heart of the book is sometimes called “the problem of mental content,” “Brentano's problem,” or “the problem of intentionality.” Its motivating mystery is how neurobiological states can (...) have semantic properties such as meaning or reference. Neander proposes a naturalistic account for sensory-perceptual representations. Neander draws on insights from state-space semantics, causal theories of reference, and teleosemantic theories. She proposes and defends an intuitive, theoretically well-motivated but highly controversial thesis: sensory-perceptual systems have the function to produce inner state changes that are the analogs of as well as caused by their referents. Neander shows that the three main elements—functions, causal-information relations, and relations of second-order similarity—complement rather than conflict with each other. After developing an argument for teleosemantics by examining the nature of explanation in the mind and brain sciences, she develops a theory of mental content and defends it against six main content-determinacy challenges to a naturalized semantics. (shrink)
Empirical work on and common observation of the emotions tells us that our emotions sometimes key us to the presence of real and important reason-giving considerations without necessarily presenting that information to us in a way susceptible of conscious articulation and, sometimes, even despite our consciously held and internally justified judgment that the situation contains no such reasons. In this paper, I want to explore the implications of the fact that emotions show varying degrees of integration with our conscious agency—from (...) none at all to quite substantial—for our understanding of our rationality, and in particular for the traditional assumption that weakness of the will is necessarily irrational. (shrink)
I think that there is an awful lot wrong with the exclusion problem. So, it seems, does just about everybody else. But of course everyone disagrees about exactly _what_ is wrong with it, and I think there is more to be said about that. So I propose to say a few more words about why the exclusion problem is not really a problem after all—at least, not for the nonreductive physicalist. The genuine _dualist_ is still in trouble. Indeed, one of (...) my main points will be that the nonreductive physicalist is in a rather different position vis à vis the exclusion problem than the dualist is. Properly understanding nonreductive physicalism—and clearly recognizing that it is, after all, a form of _physicalism_—goes a long way toward solving the exclusion problem. (shrink)
This book discusses the notion that quantum gravity may represent the "breakdown" of spacetime at extremely high energy scales. If spacetime does not exist at the fundamental level, then it has to be considered "emergent", in other words an effective structure, valid at low energy scales. The author develops a conception of emergence appropriate to effective theories in physics, and shows how it applies (or could apply) in various approaches to quantum gravity, including condensed matter approaches, discrete approaches, and loop (...) quantum gravity. (shrink)
I present and defend an account of three-place trustworthiness according to which B is trustworthy with respect to A in domain of interaction D, if and only if she is competent with respect to that domain, and she would take the fact that A is counting on her, were A to do so in this domain, to be a compelling reason for acting as counted on. This is not the whole story of trustworthiness, however, for we want those we can (...) count on to identify themselves so that we can place our trust wisely. (shrink)
This book provides a new interpretation of Hegel's philosophy, arguing that his theory of reason and thinking revolve around the concept of organic life. Through a detailed analysis of Hegel's philosophy and Kant's influence, Karen Ng shows that Hegel's unique contribution is that cognitive capacities are indexed to species capacities, where embodiment and the relation to the environment are central in processes of mind.
In this article, I explore the role of affective feedback loops in creating and sustaining trust and distrust. Some emotions, such as fear and contempt, drive out trust; others, such as esteem and empathy, drive out distrust. The mechanism here is causal, but not merely causal: affective looping works through changing how the agent interprets the words, deeds, and motives of the other, thus making trust or distrust appear justified. Looping influences not only dyadic trust, but also climates, and networks (...) of trust and distrust. Not all trust-entrenching looping is virtuous, nor all distrust-entrenching looping vicious, but distrust looping is a powerful way to justify xenophobic public policy. I explore options for remedy. (shrink)
The Ethics of War is an indispensable collection of essays addressing issues both timely and age-old about the nature and ethics of war. Features essays by great thinkers from ancient times through to the present day, among them Plato, Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Grotius, Kant, Russell, and Walzer Examines timely questions such as: When is recourse to arms morally justifiable? What moral constraints should apply to military conduct? How can a lasting peace be achieved? Will appeal to a broad range of (...) readers interested in morality and ethics in war time Includes informative introductions and helpful marginal notes by editors. (shrink)
During the eighteenth century, elite women participated in the philosophical, scientific, and political controversies that resulted in the overthrow of monarchy, the reconceptualisation of marriage, and the emergence of modern, democratic institutions. In this comprehensive study, Karen Green outlines and discusses the ideas and arguments of these women, exploring the development of their distinctive and contrasting political positions, and their engagement with the works of political thinkers such as Hobbes, Locke, Mandeville and Rousseau. Her exploration ranges across Europe from (...) England through France, Italy, Germany and Russia, and discusses thinkers including Mary Astell, Emilie Du Châtelet, Luise Kulmus-Gottsched and Elisabetta Caminer Turra. This study demonstrates the depth of women's contributions to eighteenth-century political debates, recovering their historical significance and deepening our understanding of this period in intellectual history. It will provide an essential resource for readers in political philosophy, political theory, intellectual history, and women's studies. (shrink)
Over 700,000 copies of the original hardcover and paperback editions of this stunningly popular book have been sold. Karen Armstrong's superbly readable exploration of how the three dominant monotheistic religions of the world—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—have shaped and altered the conception of God is a tour de force. One of Britain's foremost commentators on religious affairs, Armstrong traces the history of how men and women have perceived and experienced God, from the time of Abraham to the present. From classical (...) philosophy and medieval mysticism to the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the modern age of skepticism, Armstrong performs the near miracle of distilling the intellectual history of monotheism into one compelling volume. (shrink)
In the ninth century BCE, the peoples of four distinct regions of the civilized world created the religious and philosophical traditions that have continued to nourish humanity to the present day: Confucianism and Daoism in China, Hinduism and Buddhism in India, monotheism in Israel, and philosophical rationalism in Greece. Later generations further developed these initial insights, but we have never grown beyond them. Rabbinic Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, for example, were all secondary flowerings of the original Israelite vision. Now, in (...) The Great Transformation , Karen Armstrong reveals how the sages of this pivotal “Axial Age” can speak clearly and helpfully to the violence and desperation that we experience in our own times. Armstrong traces the development of the Axial Age chronologically, examining the contributions of such figures as the Buddha, Socrates, Confucius, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, the mystics of the Upanishads, Mencius, and Euripides. All of the Axial Age faiths began in principled and visceral recoil from the unprecedented violence of their time. Despite some differences of emphasis, there was a remarkable consensus in their call for an abandonment of selfishness and a spirituality of compassion. With regard to dealing with fear, despair, hatred, rage, and violence, the Axial sages gave their people and give us, Armstrong says, two important pieces of advice: first there must be personal responsibility and self-criticism, and it must be followed by practical, effective action. In her introduction and concluding chapter, Armstrong urges us to consider how these spiritualities challenge the way we are religious today. In our various institutions, we sometimes seem to be attempting to create exactly the kind of religion that Axial sages and prophets had hoped to eliminate. We often equate faith with doctrinal conformity, but the traditions of the Axial Age were not about dogma. All insisted on the primacy of compassion even in the midst of suffering. In each Axial Age case, a disciplined revulsion from violence and hatred proved to be the major catalyst of spiritual change. (shrink)
In this paper I defend an etiological theory of biological functions (according to which the proper function of a trait is the effect for which it was selected by natural selection) against three objections which have been influential. I argue, contrary to Millikan, that it is wrong to base our defense of the theory on a rejection of conceptual analysis, for conceptual analysis does have an important role in philosophy of science. I also argue that biology requires a normative notion (...) of a "proper function", and that a normative notion is not ahistorical. (shrink)
I argue that dualism does not help assuage the perceived explanatory failure of physicalism. I begin with the claim that a minimally plausible dualism should only postulate a small stock of fundamental phenomenal properties and fundamental psychophysical laws: it should systematize the teeming mess of phenomenal properties and psychophysical correlations. I then argue that it is dialectically odd to think that empirical investigation could not possibly reveal a physicalist explanation of consciousness, and yet can reveal this small stock of fundamental (...) phenomenal properties and psychophysical laws. I go on to consider a couple of different forms the dualist's laws could take, and argue that one version makes no progress on the hard problem of consciousness, and the other replaces the hard problem with a different problem that is just as hard. (shrink)
The book is an exploration of how we narrow the gap between our moral ideals and our actual selves. It develops an account of moral improvement as a practical project requiring what Karen Stohr calls a "moral neighborhood." Moral neighborhoods are constructed through social practices that instantiate shared moral ideals in a flawed world.
This 1994 book examines the development of the ideas of the new Austrian school from its beginnings in Vienna in the 1870s to the present. It focuses primarily in showing how the coherent theme that emerges from the thought of Carl Menger, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig Lachman, Israel Kirzner and a variety of new younger Austrians is an examination of the implications of time and ignorance for economic theory.
What is the basis for intolerance? This book addresses that question by developing a universal theory about what causes intolerance of difference in general, which includes racism, political intolerance, moral intolerance and punitiveness. It demonstrates that all these seemingly disparate attitudes are principally caused by just two factors: individuals' innate psychological predispositions to intolerance interacting with changing conditions of societal threat. The threatening conditions, resonant particularly in the present political climate, that exacerbate authoritarian attitudes include national economic downturn, rapidly rising (...) crime rates, civil dissent and unrest, loss of confidence in social institutions, presidential unpopularity, divisive presidential campaigns, and internal or external crises that undermine national pride or confidence. Using purpose-built experimental manipulations, cross-national survey data and in-depth personal interviews with extreme authoritarians, the book shows that this simple model provides the most complete account of intolerance. (shrink)
Relationships between current theories, and relationships between current theories and the sought theory of quantum gravity (QG), play an essential role in motivating the need for QG, aiding the search for QG, and defining what would count as QG. Correspondence is the broad class of inter-theory relationships intended to demonstrate the necessary compatibility of two theories whose domains of validity overlap, in the overlap regions. The variety of roles that correspondence plays in the search for QG are illustrated, using examples (...) from specific QG approaches. Reduction is argued to be a special case of correspondence, and to form part of the definition of QG. Finally, the appropriate account of emergence in the context of QG is presented, and compared to conceptions of emergence in the broader philosophy literature. It is argued that, while emergence is likely to hold between QG and general relativity, emergence is not part of the definition of QG, and nor can it serve usefully in the development and justification of the new theory. (shrink)
Many otherwise enlightened people often dismiss etiquette as a trivial subject or—worse yet—as nothing but a disguise for moral hypocrisy or unjust social hierarchies. Such sentiments either mistakenly assume that most manners merely frame the “real issues” of any interpersonal exchange or are the ugly vestiges of outdated, unfair social arrangements. But in _On Manners_, Karen Stohr turns the tables on these easy prejudices, demonstrating that the scope of manners is much broader than most people realize and that manners (...) lead directly to the roots of enduring ethical questions. Stohr suggests that though manners are mostly conventional, they are nevertheless authoritative insofar as they are a primary means by which we express moral attitudes and commitments and carry out important moral goals. Drawing primarily on Aristotle and Kant and with references to a wide range of cultural examples—from Jane Austen’s _Pride and Prejudice_ to Larry David’s _Curb Your Enthusiasm_—the author ultimately concludes that good manners are essential to moral character. (shrink)
This book provides a feminist analysis of #MeToo and the sexual assault allegations against celebrity perpetrators which have emerged since the Weinstein story of October 2017. It argues for the importance of understanding #MeToo in relation to an on-going history of Anglo-American feminist activism, theory and interdisciplinary research. Boyle investigates how speaking out about rape, sexual assault and harassment on social media can be understood in relation to second-wave feminist traditions of consciousness-raising. Her argument explores the media depiction of feminism (...) – and feminists - in the wake of Weinstein and the cultural values associated with men’s abuse, particularly within the film and television industries. The book concludes with an exploration of what the #MeToo era has meant for men as victims/survivors and as alleged perpetrators, in relation to narratives of victimisation and of monstrosity. (shrink)
Both definite descriptions and pronouns are often anaphoric; that is, part of their interpretation in context depends on prior linguistic material in the discourse. For example: A student walked in. The student sat down. A student walked in. She sat down. One popular view of anaphoric pronouns, the d-type view, is that pronouns like ‘she’ go proxy for definite descriptions like ‘the student who walked in’, which are in turn treated in a classical Russellian or Fregean fashion. I argue for (...) a novel version of the d-type view in which anaphoric definites are restricted existential quantifiers that presuppose discourse uniqueness, which is uniqueness of discourse referent in the context, rather than uniqueness of object in the world. In other words, the anaphoric definites ‘the student’ and ‘she’ in and presuppose that there is a single object under discussion that is a student who walked in. I further argue that, by contrast, non-anaphoric definites are restricted existential quantifiers that presuppose worldly uniqueness, that is, that there is a unique object in the world that satisfies the descriptive information. The semantics for anaphoric and non-anaphoric definites accounts for the differences in truth conditions in discourses involving the two different types of definites, improving on existing accounts. It is further supported by crosslinguistic data. The semantics is formally implemented in a static system employing quantifier domain restriction in the style of Stanley and Szabo :219–261, 2000) and extended to account for bridging definites and donkey sentences. (shrink)
This paper has two parts: In the first part, I give a general survey of the various reasons 17th and 18th century life scientists and metaphysicians endorsed the theory of pre-existence according to which God created all living beings at the creation of the universe, and no living beings are ever naturally generated anew. These reasons generally fall into three categories. The first category is theological. For example, many had the desire to account for how all humans are stained by (...) original sin (we were all there). As another example of a theological motivation, some take the organism as an obvious starting point for a teleological argument for God’s existence, and this staring point is sometimes developed into a full-blown theory of pre-existence. The second category could be thought of as non-theological metaphysical, and paramount here is the desire to deal with the metaphysical problem of individuation. So, for example, Leibniz embraces a version of hylomorphism in order to overcome difficulties with Descartes’ theory of material substance, including the difficulty of how to account for enduring material individuals, and Leibniz’s hylomorphism is closely linked with his embrace of pre-existence. The third category might be termed “biological”, and one example of such a concern is how to explain the organic unity of living beings where the whole seems to ontologically precede the parts. This is frequently translated into a temporal priority of whole to parts, and thus pre-existence is posited. Of course, many natural philosophers of the early modern period embrace pre-existence for more than one reason, but in general, these are the three classes of motivations one might have for embracing the theory. In the second part of the paper I examine in detail one argument that appears in the work of Malebranche. On the face of it, this argument seems to be a biological one, specifically the biological or organic holism argument mentioned above. But upon closer examination, I shall argue, Malebranche’s reasons for endorsing pre-existence bring together several of the arguments discussed in the first part of the paper. I conclude with some considerations about what we can learn about Malebranche as a natural philosopher from his motivations for holding the pre-existence doctrine of generation. (shrink)
Principles are central to physical reasoning, particularly in the search for a theory of quantum gravity (QG), where novel empirical data is lacking. One principle widely adopted in the search for QG is UV completion: the idea that a theory should (formally) hold up to all possible high energies. We argue---/contra/ standard scientific practice---that UV-completion is poorly-motivated as a guiding principle in theory-construction, and cannot be used as a criterion of theory-justification in the search for QG. For this, we explore (...) the reasons for expecting, or desiring, a UV-complete theory, as well as analyse how UV completion is used, and how it should be used, in various specific approaches to QG. (shrink)
According to Margaret Cavendish the entire natural world is essentially rational such that everything thinks in some way or another. In this paper, I examine why Cavendish would believe that the natural world is ubiquitously rational, arguing against the usual account, which holds that she does so in order to account for the orderly production of very complex phenomena (e.g. living beings) given the limits of the mechanical philosophy. Rather, I argue, she attributes ubiquitous rationality to the natural world in (...) order to ground a theory of the ubiquitous freedom of nature, which in turn accounts for both the world's orderly and disorderly behavior. (shrink)
Principles are central to physical reasoning, particularly in the search for a theory of quantum gravity, where novel empirical data are lacking. One principle widely adopted in the search for QG is ultraviolet completion: the idea that a theory should hold up to all possible high energies. We argue— contra standard scientific practice—that UV-completion is poorly motivated as a guiding principle in theory-construction, and cannot be used as a criterion of theory-justification in the search for QG. For this, we explore (...) the reasons for expecting, or desiring, a UV-complete theory, as well as analyse how UV-completion is used, and how it should be used, in various specific approaches to QG. 1Introduction 1.1Principles in theory development and evaluation 2Primer on UV-Completion, Renormalizability, and All That 2.1Renormalizability and UV-completion 2.2Other forms of UV-completion 3Why Should QG Be UV-Complete? 3.1UV-completion and fundamentality 3.2UV-completion and minimal length 4UV-Completion in Different Approaches to QG 4.1String theory 4.2Asymptotic safety 4.3Causal dynamical triangulation 4.4Higher derivative approaches 4.5Supergravity 4.6Causal set theory 4.7Canonical QG 4.8Loop quantum gravity 4.9Approaches based on alternative gravitational theories 4.10Emergent gravity approaches 5UV-Completion as a Guiding Principle in QG 6Conclusion. (shrink)
In seeking an answer to the question of what it means for a theory to be fundamental, it is enlightening to ask why the current best theories of physics are not generally believed to be fundamental. This reveals a set of conditions that a theory of physics must satisfy in order to be considered fundamental. Physics aspires to describe ever deeper levels of reality, which may be without end. Ultimately, at any stage we may not be able to tell whether (...) we've reached rock bottom, or even if there is a base level – nevertheless, I draft a checklist to help us identify when to stop digging, in the case where we may have reached a candidate for a final theory. Given that the list is – according to (current) mainstream belief in high-energy physics – complete, and each criterion well-motivated, I argue that a physical theory that satisfies all the criteria can be assumed to be fundamental in the absence of evidence to the contrary (i.e., I argue that the necessary conditions are jointly sufficient for a claim of fundamentality in physics). (shrink)
Much of the most interesting work in philosophy today is metaphysical in character. Oxford Studies in Metaphysics is a forum for the best new work in this flourishing field. OSM offers a broad view of the subject, featuring not only the traditionally central topics such as existence, identity, modality, time, and causation, but also the rich clusters of metaphysical questions in neighbouring fields, such as philsophy of mind and philosophy of science. Besides independent essays, volumes will often contain a critical (...) essay on a recent book, or a symposium that allows participants to respond to one another's criticisms and questions. Anyone who wants to know what's happening in metaphysics can start here. (shrink)