Age has been shown to influence language comprehension, with delays, for instance, in older adults' expectations about upcoming information. We examined to what extent expectations about upcoming event information change across the lifespan and as a function of different world-language relations. In a visual-world paradigm, participants in all three age groups inspected a speaker whose facial expression was either smiling or sad. Next they inspected two clipart agents depicted as acting upon a patient. Control scenes featured the same three characters (...) without the action depictions. While inspecting the depictions, comprehenders listened to a German sentence [e.g., Den Marienkäfer kitzelt vergnügt der Kater; literally: “The ladybug tickles happily the cat ”]. Referential verb-action relations could, in principle, cue the cat-agent and so could non-referential relations via links from the speaker's smile to “happily” and the cat's smile. We examined variation in participants' visual anticipation of the agent before it was mentioned depending on participant age and whether the referentially mediated action depiction or the non-referentially associated speaker smile cued the agent. The action depictions rapidly boosted participants' visual anticipation of the agent, facilitating thematic role assignment in all age groups. By contrast, effects of the non-referentially cued speaker smile emerged in the younger adults only. We outline implications of these findings for processing accounts of the temporally coordinated interplay between listeners' age-dependent language comprehension, their interrogation of the visual context, and visual context influences. (shrink)
Based on three empirical studies, this research sets out to conceptualise and subsequently operationalise the construct of consumer perceived ethicality (CPE) of a company or brand. Study 1 investigates consumer meanings of the term ethical and reveals that, contrary to philosophical scholars' exclusively consequentialist or nonconsequentialist positions, consumers' ethical judgments are a function of both these evaluation principles, illustrating that not any one scholarly definition of ethics alone is capable of capturing the content domain. The resulting conceptualisation identifies six key (...) themes explicating the construct. Building upon these findings, studies 2 and 3 were conducted to operationalise CPE. Such operationalisation is an essential prerequisite for future explorations and theory development given the absence of a suitable tool to capture and quantify the strength and direction of CPE. The key focus was on developing a valid and reliable multi-item measurement tool that is practical, parsimonious and easy to administer. The scale's general applicability allows deployment in academic and business contexts as well as different research areas and doing thus facilitates the much-needed theory building in this new research area. (shrink)
This research investigates how consumers’ ethical brand perceptions are affected by differentially valenced information. Drawing on literature from person-perception formation and using a sequential, mixed method design comprising qualitative interviews and two experiments with a national representative population sample, our findings show that only when consumers perceive their judgment of a brand’s ethicality to be pertinent, do they process information holistically and in line with the configural model of impression formation. In this case, negative information functions as a diagnostic cue (...) to form an unethical brand perception, irrespective of other positive information at hand. However, in the case where processing relevance of the un/ethical information provided is low, brand perception formation is algebraic, in which case positive information can counterbalance and neutralize the detrimental impact of brand misbehavior. Our findings extend existing research on consumer perceived ethicality as well as consumer reactions to corporate social responsibility and sustainability initiatives, which has so far assumed the asymmetric impact of negative information on ethical perceptions and consumer attitudes to be prevalent. We derive a range of academic and managerial implications and present a number of important avenues for future research. (shrink)
French philosopher Louis Pierre Althusser (1918 -1990) helped define the politico-theoretical conjuncture of pre- and post-1968. Today, there is a recrudescence of interest in his thought, especially in light of his later work, published in English as Philosophy of the Encounter (Verso, 2006). This has led to renewed debates on the reformulation of conflicting notions of materialism, on the event as both philosophical concept and political construction, and on the nature of politics and the political. These original essays by leading (...) scholars aim to provide a new assessment of Althusser's thought, especially in relation to contemporary debates. Organized in four sections that represent the main currents in Althusser's scholarship, the book discusses materialism and the different formulations of the relationship between politics and philosophy, Althusser's interpretations of political thinkers (including Machiavelli, Deleuze and Gramsci), the resources he provides to critique political economy and politics in post-Marxist thought, and the theorization of ideology and politics. Encountering Althusser is a groundbreaking resource that highlights Althusser's continuing relevance to contemporary radical thought. (shrink)
ABSTRACT:The relationship between culture and corruption has been the focus of various studies, producing inconsistent results. We suggest that these inconsistencies might be due to the conceptualization and measurement of culture. Drawing on the possible value/fact dichotomy discussed in ethical philosophy, we introduce the construct of cultural discrepancy—the difference between cultural values and practices —as a predictor of pervasive and arbitrary corruption. Examining the relationship between the discrepancies observed in the GLOBE cultural dimensions and the Corruption Perception Index shows that (...) in-group collectivism discrepancy is negatively related to pervasive corruption; future orientation discrepancy is positively related to arbitrary corruption. Further, we show that these relationships are contingent on national wealth. The negative relationship for in-group collectivism discrepancy is most pronounced in poor and moderately wealthy countries, and the positive relationship for future orientation discrepancy is most pronounced in rich countries. (shrink)
The threat simulation theory of dreaming states that dream consciousness is essentially an ancient biological defence mechanism, evolutionarily selected for its capacity to repeatedly simulate threatening events. Threat simulation during dreaming rehearses the cognitive mechanisms required for efficient threat perception and threat avoidance, leading to increased probability of reproductive success during human evolution. One hypothesis drawn from TST is that real threatening events encountered by the individual during wakefulness should lead to an increased activation of the system, a threat simulation (...) response, and therefore, to an increased frequency and severity of threatening events in dreams. Consequently, children who live in an environment in which their physical and psychological well-being is constantly threatened should have a highly activated dream production and threat simulation system, whereas children living in a safe environment that is relatively free of such threat cues should have a weakly activated system. We tested this hypothesis by analysing the content of dream reports from severely traumatized and less traumatized Kurdish children and ordinary, non-traumatized Finnish children. Our results give support for most of the predictions drawn from TST. The severely traumatized children reported a significantly greater number of dreams and their dreams included a higher number of threatening dream events. The dream threats of traumatized children were also more severe in nature than the threats of less traumatized or non-traumatized children. (shrink)
The present study was conducted with the aim of constructing and validating a short form of the Profile of Mood States. The POMS is a widely-applied measure for the assessment of an individual's mood. Thus, it is of great relevance for many research questions in clinical and social psychology. To develop the short scale, we first examined psychometric properties and found the optimal 16-item solution among all valid combinations of the full POMS in an exploratory subsample of our complete representative (...) sample of the German general population. We then validated this model in a confirmatory subsample. Additionally, we examined its invariance across age groups and sex, as well as its reliability. Our results indicate that the POMS-16 is a valid and reliable measure of mood states with minimal losses compared to the 35-item version. Particularly where brevity and an economical assessment is desired, the POMS-16 should be considered. (shrink)
In people with chronic low back pain, maladaptive structural and functional changes on a cortical level have been identified. On a functional level, somatosensory cortical excitability has been shown to be reduced in chronic pain conditions, resulting in cortical disinhibition. The occurrence of structural and/or functional maladaptive cortical changes in people with CLBP could play a role in maintaining the pain. There is currently no measurement protocol for cortical excitability that employs stimulation directly to the lower back. We developed a (...) protocol for the measurement of single pulse somatosensory evoked potential waveforms and paired-pulse behavior generated from sensory nerves of the lower back and quantified its test–retest reliability in a sample of 30 healthy individuals to gain insights into the normal variability of cortical responses, which could then be compared to results from people with CLBP. We investigated cortical excitability by measuring SEPs and PPB. PPB was defined as the ratio of the amplitude of the second cortical response divided by the first cortical response. A2s was determined by subtracting the response to single-pulse stimuli from the paired pulse stimuli response to account for linear superposition effects. The test–retest reliability of the protocol was very poor with no evidence of systematic bias but a high amount of random variability between sessions. There was no significant difference in the right side PPB for session 1 and session 2 ; mean session difference [ = −0.44 ; t = −1.17, p = 0.26]. The ICC3.1 for the outlier-removed right side PPB were 0.19 and 0.43 for left side PPB. This finding potentially has wider implications for PPB protocols. If these findings were replicated in other groups and other nerves, it would question the validity of this measure more generally. However, these findings are restricted to healthy people and sensory nerves of the lower back and may not be generalizable. (shrink)
Bei geriatrischen, oral ernährten Patienten mit Dysphagie entstehen insbesondere bei der Kostformanpassung ethische Konflikte. Die Abwägung zwischen Aspirationsrisiko und Lebensqualität fällt oft zugunsten der Fürsorge – also einer Risikominimierung – aus, Autonomie und das Nicht-Schadens-Prinzip werden in den Entscheidungen weniger beachtet.Ziel dieser Studie war die Erfassung relevanter Aspekte aus der Patienten- und Angehörigenperspektive bezüglich der Abwägungen zwischen Aspirationsrisiko und Lebensqualität. Zudem wurde die Erprobung des im Rahmen der Studie entwickelten Interviewleitfadens und die Entwicklung von Hypothesen für weiterführende Studien angestrebt. Acht (...) geriatrische Patienten mit leicht- bis schwergradiger Dysphagie und mindestens einer Woche stark adaptierter Kost sowie vier Angehörige wurden in halbstandardisierten, problemzentrierten Interviews befragt. Die Auswertung erfolgte auf Basis der qualitativen Inhaltsanalyse nach Mayring. Die problemzentrierten Interviews und der Interviewleitfaden erwiesen sich als geeignetes Instrument, das individuelle Erleben der Situation differenziert zu erfassen. Es konnte ein breit gefächertes Spektrum möglicher Hintergründe zu Risiko-Lebensqualitäts-Gewichtungen und ethischen Konfliktsituationen gefunden werden, die im Rahmen der Kostformadaption eine Rolle spielen. Diese wurden in drei Hauptkategorien zusammengefasst: Aspekte für eine höhere Risikotoleranz, Aspekte für eine niedrigere Risikotoleranz, Aspekte für die Instabilität von Entscheidungen.Die gewonnenen Kategorien geben einen ersten Überblick über die komplexen Einflüsse auf Risiko-Lebensqualitäts-Abwägungen oral ernährter, alter Menschen mit Dysphagie. Die Ergebnisse können ein Ausgangspunkt für weiterführende Studien mit einer größeren Fallzahl bilden und auf dieser Basis zur Entwicklung eines Orientierungsrahmens für Kostformentscheidungen in der geriatrischen Dysphagietherapie beitragen. (shrink)
A previous observational study suggested that when faced with a partner with its back turned, chimpanzees tend to move around to the front of a non-attending partner and then gesture — rather than gesturing once to attract attention and then again to convey a specific intent. We investigated this preference experimentally by presenting six orangutans, five gorillas, nine chimpanzees, and four bonobos with a food begging situation in which we varied the body orientation of an experimenter with respect to the (...) subject and the location of the food. These manipulations allowed us to measure whether subjects preferred to move around to face E or to use signals to attract her attention before they begged for food. Results showed that all species moved around to face E and then produced visual gestures, instead of using tactile/ auditory gestures behind E to call her attention. Species differences were apparent particularly when the food and E were in different locations. Unlike gorillas and orangutans, chimpanzees and bonobos produced their gestures in front of E in all conditions, including that in which subjects had to leave the food behind to communicate with her. Implications of these results are discussed in the context of the evolution of social cognition in great apes. (shrink)
This article is incorrectly classified as Review Paper in the online and print publication. The correct classification for this article is Original Paper. The publisher apologizes for the inconvenience caused.
This interview with Roland Benedikter, the European scholar of technology futures and politics, discusses the emergence of biological and computing technologies for transforming humanity. In this wide-ranging discussion, Benedikter discusses many ethical, social, and political implications to the application of these enhancing technologies and their coming political implications. Transhumanism, according to Benedikter, will represent both a powerful social ideology and a serious political agenda. How will humanism respond?
Despite the variety of theories suggesting how human language might have evolved, very few consider the potential role of emotions in such scenarios. The few existing theories jointly highlight that gaining control over the production of emotional communication was crucial for establishing and maintaining larger social groups. This in turn resulted in the development of more complex social emotions and the corresponding sophisticated socio-cognitive skills to understand others’ communicative behavior, providing the grounds for language to emerge. Importantly, these theories propose (...) that the ability of controlling emotional communication is a uniquely human trait, an assumption that we will challenge. By taking a comparative approach, we discuss recent findings from behavioral and neurobiological studies from our closest relatives, the non-human primates, on the extent of control over their gestural, facial and vocal signals. This demonstrates that research foci differ drastically across these modalities, which further enhances the traditional dichotomy between emotional, involuntary facial and vocal expressions in contrast to intentionally, voluntarily produced gestures. Based on this brief overview, we point to gaps of knowledge in primate communication research and suggest how investigating emotional expressions in our closest relatives might enrich the road map towards the evolution of human language. (shrink)
Biological realism (Revonsuo, 2001, 2006) states that dreaming is a biological phenomenon and therefore explainable in naturalistic terms, similar to the explanation of other biological phenomena. In the biological sciences, the structure of explanations can be described with the help of a framework called 'multilevel explanation'. The multilevel model provides a context that assists to clarify what needs to be explained and how, and how to place different theories into the same model. Here, I will argue that the multilevel framework (...) would be useful when we try to construct scientific explanations of dreaming. (shrink)
A fundamental debate within feminist scholarship and activism centers on what relationship feminism should have with the state. This article explores this debate empirically by examining differences in the emotion cultures of a state-dependent and an autonomous feminist organization in postsocialist eastern Germany. The comparative analysis demonstrates how organizations construct specific emotion cultures in response to emotional opportunities and constraints created by their relationships with state institutions. The state-dependent organization adopts a less expressive emotion culture that assures broad public appeal (...) and future state support, but does not build critical consciousness among participants. In contrast, the autonomous organization encourages displays of feelings as part of consciousness raising, creating an emotion culture that reduces public appeal but produces especially loyal and active constituents. (shrink)
Belief and Truth: A Skeptic Reading of Plato explores a Socratic intuition about belief, doxa -- belief is "shameful." In aiming for knowledge, one must aim to get rid of beliefs. Vogt shows how deeply this proposal differs from contemporary views, but that it nevertheless speaks to intuitions we are likely to share with Plato, ancient skeptics, and Stoic epistemologists.
Since the Public Library of Science launched its first open-access journals and the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities has been released in 2003 and found enormous attention, the claim for open accessâto make publicly funded journal articles available for the publicâstarted to reach German scientists too. But still no experience has been made with electronic publishing in general and more specifically with open-access publishing. One consequence is that the potential capacity of open accessâthe (...) (inter) national and (trans) disciplinary visibility and accessibility of scientific outputâis not sufficiently used by German researchers. Ways to successfully establish an open-access journal are presented in this article by referring to Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung/Forum: Qualitative Social Research (FQS) as an example: after introducing the current state of FQS traditional and innovative ways of publishing are being discussed which had been employed while developing FQS and which helped FQS to become the most important electronic journal in the field of qualitative research. (shrink)
Wieviel Ethik braucht der Mensch, wieviel Ethik braucht die Wissenschaft? Vor dem aktuellen Hintergrund einer gewandelten Wissenschaftsgesellschaft von hoher Entwicklungsdynamik geht es darum, Anleitung zu ethischer Selbst- und Situationsreflexion zu geben. Denn die spektakulären Errungenschaften nicht nur im Bereich der Biomedizin haben jedenfalls vorübergehend Zonen von moralischer und ethischer Ratlosigkeit geschaffen. Sie eröffnen Spielräume, von denen nicht sicher ist, ob sie genutzt werden dürfen und sollten. Die Empfindlichkeit gegenüber den Nachteilen und Risiken der technisch-wissenschaftlichen Zivilisation ist jedenfalls dort, wo die (...) Möglichkeiten verfügbar sind, so weit gestiegen, dass sich ihre praktische Nutzung längst nicht mehr von selbst versteht. Auch das Recht ist derzeit weder auf der nationalen noch auf der internationalen Ebene in der Lage, überzeugende Handlungsanleitung zu geben. Welche Ziele und Mittel mit den neuen Möglichkeiten aber verfolgt werden dürfen, ist in der Tat eine Frage nach der Legitimität von Bedürfnissen und der Angemessenheit der Mittel. Nicht zuletzt appelliert sie (die Empfindlichkeit gegenüber den Errungenschaften der wissenschaftlich-technischen Gesellschaften?) potentiell auch an die Tugend der Selbstbeschränkung, die vielleicht dort noch wirksam wird, wo andere Steuerungsmechanismen versagen oder zu schwach sind. Diese komplexe Problemlage bei der Suche nach einer neuen Wertordnung an den Grenzen der Anwendung von Forschung und Wissenschaft hat der Ethik derzeit eine unerwartete Konjunktur beschert. (shrink)
In the essay ‘Sexual Differing’ from their book New Materialism: Interviews and Cartographies, Rick Dolphijn and Iris van der Tuin develop their new materialist take on sexual difference through their rereading of Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex. I propose to read this essay as deploying the ‘analytical tool’ of ‘jumping generations’ articulated in the homonymous paper by van der Tuin as signature of the ‘new materialist’ ‘third wave’ of feminist theory. By pointing to the immediate textual context of the (...) passages from The Second Sex quoted in ‘Sexual Differing’, to the philosophical underpinning of Beauvoir's work, and to the historical context of its reception, I argue that while the tool of ‘jumping generations’, as put to use in ‘Sexual Differing’, might produce unexpected outcomes, it also risks confining to dusty feminist archives segments of feminist philosophy that might still be relevant for thinking gendered oppression and liberation today: Beauvoir's understanding of the social ontogenesis of freedom, the collective and egalitarian nature of political transformation and the genealogy of materialist feminist thought theoretically and historically linked to Beauvoir and The Second Sex. The issue is not merely one of historical and theoretical accuracy, but of enabling a capacious materialist analysis of gendered oppression and liberation. I conclude by pointing at how Dolphijn and van der Tuin's approach expressly discards understandings of history and scholarship that it nevertheless necessarily performs, and propose that this can be taken as a starting point to rethink sexual differing in terms of a political and ethical commitment beyond its originary metaphysical new materialist articulation. This is where, I propose, the above-mentioned conceptual resources linked to The Second Sex and muted by ‘Sexual Differing’ could prove fruitful, and timely. (shrink)
Using lens- and time-based media — photography and very still moving image — the artistic research practice presented here as ‘phenomenological notes’ aims to bring to the foreground that which might be familiar and is easily overlooked. The presupposed perception of the phenomenon of nature is destabilized and put into question through a process of lens-based durational observation, stretching that which is thought to be known, allowing for the opening of other understandings of nature to emerge. The aim is for (...) these phenomena to be re-seen through closely engaging with what surrounds us and through a process of elongated looking that leads to different modes of seeing and recollecting. The practice itself comprises two distinct, seemingly opposed but interdependent parts of the overall making process: one foregoes the other which is essential for the other one to evolve. These parts are referred to as modes of attention. The first mode of attention demonstrates a more active form of being in a space: the artist actively moves, seeks, and collects. Following on from this, a less active mode is taken up: the artist becomes more receptive, lets the world reveal and unfold itself in front of the lens. The three pieces of work presented — Stille Fragmente, Leaves, Ice melting — give expression to these two modes of attention, and also show how the work has evolved throughout ‘time’. As the work has developed, the process of looking has become more and more distilled, lending more attention to the idea of duration, a concept that might be somewhat contentious to discuss via a medium so clearly associated with clock-time. The decision has been made to trust the agencies of the artifacts themselves produced by this process: not to explain but to frame the phenomenon, to destabilize the pre-established understanding of the phenomenon of nature. (shrink)
Recent research on moral decision-making has suggested that many common moral judgments are based on immediate intuitions. However, some individuals arrive at highly counterintuitive utilitarian conclusions about when it is permissible to harm other individuals. Such utilitarian judgments have been attributed to effortful reasoning that has overcome our natural emotional aversion to harming others. Recent studies, however, suggest that such utilitarian judgments might also result from a decreased aversion to harming others, due to a deficit in empathic concern and social (...) emotion. The present study investigated the neural basis of such indifference to harming using functional neuroimaging during engagement in moral dilemmas. A tendency to counterintuitive utilitarian judgment was associated both with ‘psychoticism’, a trait associated with a lack of empathic concern and antisocial tendencies, and with ‘need for cognition’, a trait reflecting preference for effortful cognition. Importantly, only psychoticism was also negatively correlated with activation in the subgenual cingulate cortex (SCC), a brain area implicated in empathic concern and social emotions such as guilt, during counterintuitive utilitarian judgments. Our findings suggest that when individuals reach highly counterintuitive utilitarian conclusions, this need not reflect greater engagement in explicit moral deliberation. It may rather reflect a lack of empathic concern, and diminished aversion to harming others. (shrink)
Court interpreting in Croatia is a very unregulated field especially regarding the training and the skills that are to be acquired in order to pro- vide accurate translation at courts. One of the prerequisites according to the Regulations on Court Interpreters in Croatia is knowledge of the structure of judicial power, state government and legal terminology. Although the Regulations prescribe that the training should last no longer than two months, the organisations providing such training shorten this to three or four (...) days. Taking into account all that has been said one realizes that in such short time a per- son cannot be properly qualified to practice as a court interpreter. According to the EU Directive on the right to interpretation and translation in criminal proceedings member states should provide adequate training in order to ensure the quality of interpretation and to avoid that suspected or accused persons complain that the quality of interpretation was not good enough to secure the fairness of the proceeding, which according to Article 2 of the Directive they have the right to. Since Croatia joined the European Union on 1 July 2013, it will have to change its Regulations on Court Interpreters in order to com- ply with this Directive. This paper will try to analyze the problems within the scope of court interpreter’s profession in Croatia both in civil and in criminal proceedings. Several examples will be suggested as the possible model for modifying court interpreting in Croatia. Since this profession is often underrated by the national courts, the paper will suggest ways to prevent such views and point out the importance of good court interpretation. (shrink)