What are genes? What do genes do? These seemingly simple questions are in fact challenging to answer accurately. As a result, there are widespread misunderstandings and over-simplistic answers, which lead to common conceptions widely portrayed in the media, such as the existence of a gene 'for' a particular characteristic or disease. In reality, the DNA we inherit interacts continuously with the environment and functions differently as we age. What our parents hand down to us is just the beginning of our (...) life story. This comprehensive book analyses and explains the gene concept, combining philosophical, historical, psychological and educational perspectives with current research in genetics and genomics. It summarises what we currently know and do not know about genes and the potential impact of genetics on all our lives. Making Sense of Genes is an accessible but rigorous introduction to contemporary genetics concepts for non-experts, undergraduate students, teachers and healthcare professionals. (shrink)
Biologists rely on theories, apply models and construct explanations, but rarely reflect on their nature and structure. This book introduces key topics in philosophy of science to provide the required philosophical background for this kind of reflection, which is an important part of all aspects of research and communication in biology. It concisely and accessibly addresses fundamental questions such as: Why should biologists care about philosophy of science? How do concepts contribute to scientific advancement? What is the nature of scientific (...) controversies in the biological sciences? Chapters draw on contemporary examples and case studies from across biology, making the discussion relevant and insightful. Written for researchers and advanced undergraduate and graduate students across the life sciences, its aim is to encourage readers to become more philosophically minded and informed to enable better scientific practice. It is also an interesting and pertinent read for philosophers of science. (shrink)
In standard model theory, deductions are not the things one models. But in general proof theory, in particular in categorial proof theory, one finds models of deductions, and the purpose here is to motivate a simple example of such models. This will be a model of deductions performed within an abstract context, where we do not have any particular logical constant, but something underlying all logical constants. In this context, deductions are represented by arrows in categories involved in a general (...) adjoint situation. To motivate the notion of adjointness, one of the central notions of category theory, and of mathematics in general, it is first considered how some features of it occur in set-theoretical axioms and in the axioms of the lambda calculus. Next, it is explained how this notion arises in the context of deduction, where it characterizes logical constants. It is shown also how the categorial point of view suggests an analysis of propositional identity. The problem of propositional identity, i.e., the problem of identity of meaning for propositions, is no doubt a philosophical problem, but the spirit of the analysis proposed here will be rather mathematical. Finally, it is considered whether models of deductions can pretend to be a semantics. This question, which as so many questions having to do with meaning brings us to that wall that blocked linguists and philosophers during the whole of the twentieth century, is merely posed. At the very end, there is the example of a geometrical model of adjunction. Without pretending that it is a semantics, it is hoped that this model may prove illuminating and useful. (shrink)
It is not possible to dismiss the atomistic paradigm because the proposed elementary particles are too many (and, hence, it is claimed, they do not provide a simple account of nature) or because it is not possible to observe quarks in an isolated manner. The developments in particle physics have brought about radical changes to our notions of simplicity and observability, and in this paper we elaborate on these changes. It is as a result of these changes that the present (...) situation in elementary particle physics justify us to claim that we have indeed reached a level of explanation where the constituent particles (quarks, leptons, gluons, and intermediate bosons) used for the explanation of the various phenomena considered to be delineating a particular level in the descriptive framework of the physical phenomena and a specific stratum in the organization of nature, can be regarded as elementary. (shrink)
Theories of global justice have moved from issues relating to crimes against humanity and war crimes or, furthermore, ?negative duties? with respect to non-citizens, towards problems of distributive justice and global inequality. Thomas Nagel's Storrs Lectures from 2005, exemplifying Rawlsian internationalism, argue that liberal requirements concerning duties of distributive justice apply exclusively within a single nation-state, and do not extend to duties of this nature between rich and poor countries. Nagel even argues that the demand for global equality is not (...) a demand of justice at all. In the present article I will try to offer a normative basis for the criticism of such a view. Following Kant and more recently Philip Pettit, I locate this normative basis on political freedom conceived as non-domination. Such a conception opens up the possibility of a political cosmopolitanism, which is based not on an empirical interdependence among people at a global level, but on a normative interdependence. Subsequent cosmopolitan duties extend both to the elimination of domination everywhere in the world and to the equal enjoyment of non-dominated choice. Thus, it will be argued that modern republicanism is falsely identified with a particular, bounded community, but supports a political, not simply a moral, cosmopolitanism. This kind of cosmopolitanism conceives of sovereign states neither as useless constructions, nor as mere instruments for realizing the pre-institutional value of justice among human beings. Instead, their existence is what gives the value of justice its application. Cosmopolitanism is not after all about the abolishment of all boundaries, but about the essential capacity to draw and redraw them infinitely under conditions of global justice. (shrink)
The article explores the real aims of the so-called international community which is usually understood as the USA, as the only remaining super power and the European Union, particularly France. Great Britain and Germany. The author argues that the real and particularly long-term aims of these powers should be primarily inferred from their real deeds and only subsequently from public statements of their officials. By analyzing a number of examples in the Balkans and in other parts of the world the (...) author comes to unexpected conclusions. While in words big Western powers supported multi-ethnicity and preservation of multi-ethnic states, in deeds they not only instigated nationalism and separatism but also hastened and recognized the dissolution of three European federations into 22 more or less national states. And while in words they apparently supported so-called democratization, in practice they not only supported authoritarian regimes but also identified democracy with occupation in Republika Srpska. U ovom radu razmatraju se pravi ciljevi tzv. medjunarodne zajednice na Balkanu, pod kojom se zapravo podrazumevaju Sjedinjene Americke Drzave Kao jedina preostala super sila, i Evropska unija, u kojoj kljucnu ulogu imaju Francuska, Velika Britanija i Nemacka. Pisac polazi od uverenja da stvarne, a narocito dugorocne namere ovih sila treba prevashodno izvoditi iz onoga sto one cine, pa tek onda uzimali u obzir i ono sto se javno ili tajno govorilo ili nagovestavalo. Analizom veceg broja primera na Balkanu i u drugim delovima sveta pisac dolazi do neocekivanog ishoda. Dok su se velike zapadne sile na recima zalagale za multietnicnost i ocuvanje multietnickih drzava, na delu su postupale upravo suprotno: ne samo sto su podsticale bujanje nacionalizma i separatizma, nego su i pospesile i priznale raspad triju evropskih federacija na 22 manje-vise nacionalne drzave. I dok su se na recima prividno zalagale za tzv. demokratizaciju, u praksi su ne samo podrzavale autoritarne rezime nego su i same na tlu Balkana demokratiju poistovetile s okupacijom. (shrink)
The goals of the research were to determine the quantity, variety and quality of service, the extent to which certain marketing activities are applied in Croatian high schools, to explore the attitudes of teachers in respect to the need for marketing activity application in secondary schools in Croatia, and the knowledge teachers have about the marketing of services. In order to achieve these goals, we conducted a survey including 271 teachers of public, private and religious high schools. Even though the (...) research confirmed that all schools apply numerous marketing activities, teachers in religious and public high schools believe these activities are not present at all. Teachers in public and religious high schools share the opinion that marketing activities should not be applied since they work in non-profit institutions. This opinion indicates a lack of knowledge about marketing and even a wrong attitude toward it. (shrink)
In Neither Physics Nor Chemistry, Kostas Gavroglu and Ana Simoes examine the evolution of quantum chemistry into an autonomous discipline, tracing its development from the publication of early papers in the 1920s to the dramatic changes ...
Current books on evolutionary theory all seem to take for granted the fact that students find evolution easy to understand when actually, from a psychological perspective, it is a rather counterintuitive idea. Evolutionary theory, like all scientific theories, is a means to understanding the natural world. Understanding Evolution is intended for undergraduate students in the life sciences, biology teachers or anyone wanting a basic introduction to evolutionary theory. Covering core concepts and the structure of evolutionary explanations, it clarifies both what (...) evolution is about and why so many people find it difficult to grasp. The book provides an introduction to the major concepts and conceptual obstacles to understanding evolution, including the development of Darwin's theory, and a detailed presentation of the most important evolutionary concepts. Bridging the gap between the concepts and conceptual obstacles, Understanding Evolution presents evolutionary theory with a clarity and vision students will quickly appreciate. (shrink)
El texto siguiente trae una discusión en el campo teórico y empírico, de las relaciones entre grupos pantaneros y la naturaleza, en el entorno de las haciendas que se encuentran alrededor de Corumbá y Ladario, ciudades situadas a las márgenes del río Paraguay. En este texto, se comunican resultados parciales del proyecto de investigación acerca del conocimiento, de la cultura y de las representaciones producidas en el contexto de esas poblaciones en el proceso de apropiación de los recursos naturales. De (...) esa forma, se busca mostrar como estos grupos humanos piensan y actúan con relación al territorio pantanero. Finalmente se debate sobre las posibilidades de desarrollo local en el contexto de esas tradiciones. (shrink)
Review of Kostas Axelos, 'Introduction to a Future Way of Thought: On Marx and Heidegger' Translated by Kenneth Mills, Edited and Introduced by Stuart Elden Meson Press, Luneburg, 2015. 180 pp., £10.60 / $16.70 pb. 9783957960054.
Scientific knowledge is the most solid and robust kind of knowledge that humans have because of its inherent self-correcting character. Nevertheless, anti-evolutionists, climate denialists, and anti-vaxxers, among others, question some of the best-established scientific findings, making claims unsupported by empirical evidence. A common aspect of these claims is reference to the uncertainties of science concerning evolution, climate change, vaccination, and so on. This is inaccurate: whereas the broad picture is clear, there will always exist uncertainties about the details of the (...) respective phenomena. This book shows that uncertainty is an inherent feature of science that does not devalue it. In contrast, uncertainty advances science because it motivates further research. This is the first book on this topic that draws on philosophy of science to explain what uncertainty in science is and how it makes science advance. It contrasts evolution, climate change, and vaccination, where the uncertainties are exaggerated, and genetic testing and forensic science, where the uncertainties are usually overlooked. The goal is to discuss the scientific, psychological, and philosophical aspects of uncertainty in order to explain what it really is, what kinds of problems it actually poses, and why in the end it makes science advance. Contrary to public representations of scientific findings and conclusions that produce an intuitive but distorted view of science as certain, people need to understand and learn to live with uncertainty in science. This book is intended for anyone who wants to get a clear view of the nature of science. (shrink)
This book presents analyses of philosophical topics of importance to biology education. It is intended foremost for biology educators and teachers, and aims to show how philosophy of science in general, and philosophy of biology in particular, ...
En esta nota, el autor recuerda cómo Santo Tomás de Aquino se ha ocupado del problema de los universales, señala los textos más importantes en que aborda tal cuestión y formula algunas observaciones en torno a ellos. Finalmente, traduce al portugués uno de estos textos.
In line with their previous studies dedicated to quantum chemistry (Gavroglu and Simões 1994, 2000; Simões and Gavroglu 1997, 2001), the last joint publication by Kostas Gavroglu and Ana Simões provides the readers not only with a fine-grained, rigorous, and highly valuable book on the history of science but also with stimulating epistemological insights about the way ‘in-between’ disciplines, to use the authors’ turn of phrase, emerge from the convergence of diverging ‘styles’ of research and heterogeneous practices. To make their (...) point, the authors divide their work into four main chapters before drawing epistemological and historiographical conclusions in the fifth and last part of their work. The first chapter entitled ‘Quantum Chemistry qua Physics: The Promises and Deadlocks of Using First Principles’ focuses mainly on German researchers’ contributions in the development of quantum chemistry. In this respect, it highlights four pioneering moments: (1) Walter Heitler and Fritz Lo. (shrink)
Textbook descriptions of the foundations of Genetics give the impression that besides Mendel’s no other research on heredity took place during the nineteenth century. However, the publication of the Origin of Species in 1859, and the criticism that it received, placed the study of heredity at the centre of biological thought. Consequently, Herbert Spencer, Charles Darwin himself, Francis Galton, William Keith Brooks, Carl von Nägeli, August Weismann, and Hugo de Vries attempted to develop theories of heredity under an evolutionary perspective, (...) and they were all influenced by each other in various ways. Nonetheless, only Nägeli became aware of Mendel’s experimental work; it has also been questioned whether Mendel even had the intention to develop a theory of heredity. In this article, a short presentation of these theories is made, based on the original writings. The major aim of this article is to suggest that Mendel was definitely not the only one studying heredity before 1900, if he even did this, as may be inferred by textbooks. Although his work had a major impact after 1900, it had no impact during the latter half of the nineteenth century when an active community of students of heredity emerged. Thus, textbooks should not only present the work of Mendel, but also provide a wider view of the actual history and a depiction of science as a social process. (shrink)
In this paper, the main points of Lamarck’s and Darwin’s theoretical conceptual schemes about evolution are compared to those derived from 15 years old students’ explanations of evolutionary episodes. We suggest that secondary students’ preconceptions should not be characterized as “Lamarckian”, because they are essentially different from the ideas that Lamarck himself possessed. Most students in our research believed that needs directly impose changes on animal bodies in order to survive in a given environment and accepted the possibility of extinction (...) whereas Lamarck believed that it was the effect of use or disuse that would produce changes on body structures and that species would transform but would not die out. We conclude that the relationship between secondary students’ ideas and historical views on evolution should be treated more skeptically, given the differences in the historical, social and cultural contexts, and that instruction should focus on students’ ideas of need-driven evolution as well as on the role of chance in the evolutionary process. (shrink)
This paper presents an emerging aspect of intentionality through recent Artificial Intelligence developments in art and design. Our main thesis is that, if we focus just on the outcome of the artistic process, the intentionality of the artist does not have any relevance. Intention is measured as a result of actions regardless of whether they are human-based or not as long as there is an esthetical value intersubjectively acknowledged. In other words, what matters is the ‘intentio’ embedded in the work (...) of art rather than the ‘intendere’. By considering the former aspect, intentionality becomes free of human intervention, therefore 'unintentional'. This thesis is supported through a range of examples related to AI in general and AI art in particular. However, in the case of a self-driving vehicle, the macro-goal of the system is fixed by humans, even though the AI system itself will take care of decomposing the macro-goal into a set of micro-goals and take the corresponding decisions. In the case of art, the system does not need to have any exterior goal to the extent that art is pure freedom of expression, as many philosophers have acknowledged. In this sense, the decisions of any AI system generating art or design are independent of humans and must be judged only on the ground of the final outcome. A work of art will be judged ‘artistic’ to the extent that humans will recognize an artistic intent in the work itself. In particular, the introduction of random processes makes an AI-generated artwork fully independent of human creativity. (shrink)
The debate about how to solve the paradox of fiction has largely been a debate between Kendall Walton and the so-called thought theorists. In recent years, however, Jenefer Robinson has argued, based on her affective appraisal theory of emotion, for a noncognitivist solution to the paradox as an alternative to the thought theorists’ solution and especially to Walton's controversial solution. In this article, I argue that, despite appearances to the contrary, Robinson's affective appraisal theory is compatible with Walton's solution, at (...) the core of which lies the thesis that there are quasi-emotions. Moreover, since Robinson's theory is compatible with Walton's solution, I show how it can be used as a model to empirically test whether quasi-emotions exist. (shrink)
Some thirty years ago, two proposals were made concerning criteria for identity of proofs. Prawitz proposed to analyze identity of proofs in terms of the equivalence relation based on reduction to normal form in natural deduction. Lambek worked on a normalization proposal analogous to Prawitz's, based on reduction to cut-free form in sequent systems, but he also suggested understanding identity of proofs in terms of an equivalence relation based on generality, two derivations having the same generality if after generalizing maximally (...) the rules involved in them they yield the same premises and conclusions up to a renaming of variables. These two proposals proved to be extensionally equivalent only for limited fragments of logic. The normalization proposal stands behind very successful applications of the typed lambda calculus and of category theory in the proof theory of intuitionistic logic. In classical logic, however, it did not fare well. The generality proposal was rather neglected in logic, though related matters were much studied in pure category theory in connection with coherence problems, and there are also links to low-dimensional topology and linear algebra. This proposal seems more promising than the other one for the general proof theory of classical logic. (shrink)
El propósito de este artículo es el de investigar algunos conceptos de la Filosofía del límite de Eugenio Trías y de la noción de “genealogía” propuesta por Michel Foucault.Expuestos a partir de tres trilogías de imágenes, se desprenden diálogos que ayudan a pensar cómo se develan esas sombras de la existencia que se esconden en los pliegues de lo racional. La gran pregunta tiene que ver con el “entorno matricial” y con el movimiento de “exilio y éxodo” del ser. Las (...) imágenes elegidas funcionan como “hitos genealógicos” foucoultianos: esas “verdades sin apariencia” y “sin historia” que emergen presentando vinculaciones que inducen a otras lecturas hermenéuticas.El artículo vuelve siempre otra vez -a partir de algunas de las imágenes elegidas- a pensarse desde San Juan / Argentina, sitio que tensiona e implica, en este caso, la existencia de todas estas reflexiones y su conexión visual. (shrink)
Para este estudio, he considerado el postulado teórico que fundamenta Stefano Arduini en torno a los campos figurativos, los cuales cumplen la función de apropiarse de las figuras retóricas existentes en un discurso poético, siempre y cuando estén orientados hacia una forma de pensar distinguida por la metáfora, la sinécdoque, la metonimia, la elipsis, la antítesis y la repetición. Una vez configurada esta propuesta, realizaré un análisis afín en “Al fatigado” y “La voz en la playa” del poemario Consejero del (...) lobo (1965) del escritor peruano Rodolfo Hinostroza, con el objetivo de percibir su cosmovisión y los elementos que conforman su arte creativo. (shrink)
Kostas Axelos' 'Introduction to a Future Way of Thought' attempts to bring together two strong thinkers often thought to represent diametrically opposed political traditions: Martin Heidegger and Karl Marx. This review considers this attempt as a result of Axelos' political background, as a Greek communist revolutionary who emigrated to France and came into contact with Postwar French Heideggerian thought. Axeols then helped to establish the Heideggerian Marxism characteristic of the influential journal, Arguments.
Ambient Intelligence provides the potential for vast and varied applications, bringing with it both promise and peril. The development of Ambient Intelligence applications poses a number of ethical and legal concerns. Mobile devices are increasingly evolving into tools to orientate in and interact with the environment, thus introducing a user-centric approach to Ambient Intelligence. The MINAmI (Micro-Nano integrated platform for transverse Ambient Intelligence applications) FP6 research project aims at creating core technologies for mobile device based Ambient Intelligence services. In this (...) paper we assess five scenarios that demonstrate forthcoming MINAmI-based applications focusing on healthcare, assistive technology, homecare, and everyday life in general. A legal and ethical analysis of the scenarios is conducted, which reveals various conflicting interests. The paper concludes with some thoughts on drafting ethical guidelines for Ambient Intelligence applications. (shrink)
Science appeared in modern Greece in the first decades after its establishment as a sovereign state in 1828. The University of Athens, the Royal Observatory, the Botanical Garden, and the Natural History Museum were quickly established as spaces of scientific activity. Greek scientists were enthusiastic participants in the emerging Greek public sphere, often not only as science experts, but also as poets, intellectuals and political personae. In a space whose cultural, intellectual and historical boundaries were still being negotiated, the choice (...) of language was not a given but a pressing, sensitive national desideratum. This article examines how Greek scientists used languages to communicate with their peers and with their publics, how they handled terminology and nomenclature, and how the issues surrounding the Greek language in particular affected their practice as scientists. The article aims to show that, in nineteenth-century Greece, languages were not passive, neutral vehicles of communication, but rather integral components of the practice of science. (shrink)
Recently, the nature of science (NOS) has become recognized as an important element within the K-12 science curriculum. Despite differences in the ultimate lists of recommended aspects, a consensus is emerging on what specific NOS elements should be the focus of science instruction and inform textbook writers and curriculum developers. In this article, we suggest a contextualized, explicit approach addressing one core NOS aspect: the human aspects of science that include the domains of creativity, social influences and subjectivity. To illustrate (...) these ideas, we have focused on Charles Darwin, a scientist whose life, work and thought processes were particularly well recorded at the time and analyzed by scholars in the succeeding years. Historical facts are discussed and linked to core NOS ideas. Creativity is illustrated through the analogies between the struggle for existence in human societies and in nature, between artificial and natural selection, and between the division of labor in human societies and in nature. Social influences are represented by Darwin’s aversion of criticism of various kinds and by his response to the methodological requirements of the science of that time. Finally, subjectivity is discussed through Darwin’s development of a unique but incorrect source for the origin of variations within species. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to connect the proof theory and the model theory of a family of propositional logics weaker than Heyting's. This family includes systems analogous to the Lambek calculus of syntactic categories, systems of relevant logic, systems related toBCK algebras, and, finally, Johansson's and Heyting's logic. First, sequent-systems are given for these logics, and cut-elimination results are proved. In these sequent-systems the rules for the logical operations are never changed: all changes are made in the structural (...) rules. Next, Hubert-style formulations are given for these logics, and algebraic completeness results are demonstrated with respect to residuated lattice-ordered groupoids. Finally, model structures related to relevant model structures (of Urquhart, Fine, Routley, Meyer, and Maksimova) are given for our logics. These model structures are based on groupoids parallel to the sequent-systems. This paper lays the ground for a kind of correspondence theory for axioms of logics with implication weaker than Heyting's, a correspondence theory analogous to the correspondence theory for modal axioms of normal modal logics.The first part of the paper, which follows, contains the first two sections, which deal with sequent-systems and Hubert-formulations. The second part, due to appear in the next issue of this journal, will contain the third section, which deals with groupoid models. (shrink)
The generality of a derivation is an equivalence relation on the set of occurrences of variables in its premises and conclusion such that two occurrences of the same variable are in this relation if and only if they must remain occurrences of the same variable in every generalization of the derivation. The variables in question are propositional or of another type. A generalization of the derivation consists in diversifying variables without changing the rules of inference. This paper examines in the (...) setting of categorial proof theory the conjecture that two derivations with the same premises and conclusions stand for the same proof if and only if they have the same generality. For that purpose generality is defined within a category whose arrows are equivalence relations on finite ordinals, where composition is rather complicated. Several examples are given of deductive systems of derivations covering fragments of logic, with the associated map into the category of equivalence relations of generality. This category is isomorphically represented in the category whose arrows are binary relations between finite ordinals, where composition is the usual simple composition of relations. This representation is related to a classical representation result of Richard Brauer. (shrink)
This paper, a sequel to Models for normal intuitionistic modal logics by M. Boi and the author, which dealt with intuitionistic analogues of the modal system K, deals similarly with intuitionistic analogues of systems stronger than K, and, in particular, analogues of S4 and S5. For these prepositional logics Kripke-style models with two accessibility relations, one intuitionistic and the other modal, are given, and soundness and completeness are proved with respect to these models. It is shown how the holding of (...) formulae characteristic for particular logics is equivalent to conditions for the relations of the models. Modalities in these logics are also investigated. (shrink)