Second part of the translation into Spanish of David Lewis' "New Work for a Theory of Universals", corresponding to the last sections of the original paper. || Segunda parte de la traducción al español del trabajo de David Lewis "New Work for a Theory of Universals", correspondiente a últimas secciones del artículo original. Artículo original publicado en: Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 61, No. 4, Dec. 1983, pp. 343-377.
This selection of articles by Lewis E. Hahn addresses the philosophical school of contextualism and four contemporary American philosophers: John Dewey, Henry Nelson Wieman, Stephen C. Pepper, and Brand Blanshard. Stressing the relatively recent contextualistic worldview, which he considers one of the best world hypotheses, Hahn seeks to achieve a broad perspective within which all things may be given their due place. After providing a brief outline, Hahn explains contextualism in relation to other philosophies. In his opening chapter, as (...) in later chapters, he expresses contextualism as a form of pragmatic naturalism. In spite of Hahn’s high regard for contextualism, however, he does not think it would be good if we were limited to a single worldview. “The more different views we have and the more different sources of possible light we have, the better our chances that some of these cosmic maps will shed light on our world and our place in it.”. (shrink)
First part of the translation into Spanish of David Lewis' "New Work for a Theory of Universals", corresponding to the introduction and the first two sections of the original paper. || Primera parte de la traducción al español del trabajo de David Lewis "New Work for a Theory of Universals", correspondiente a la introducción y las dos primeras secciones del artículo original. Artículo original publicado en: Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 61, No. 4, Dec. 1983, pp. 343-377.
Counterpunch, November 23, 2009 In his wild and slanderous "Open Letter to Amnesty International" (signed, fittingly, "Yours, in disgust and despair"), The Guardian - Observer's veteran reporter Ed Vulliamy explains that two "main concerns" motivated him to draft his repudiation of AI's choice of Noam Chomsky to deliver this 2009 Stand Up For Justice lecture: One is that the "pain" individuals such as Chomsky are alleged to cause the "survivors and the bereaved" of the wars in the former Yugoslavia (...) is "immeasurable," and Vulliamy feels some kind of need to help mitigate this pain; the other, apparently, is that the "historical record" as it pertains to these wars is too precious and too fragile to be left in the wrong pair of hands. "For Amnesty International, of all people, to honour this man is to tear up whatever credibility they have estimably and admirably won over the decades, and to reduce all they say hitherto to didactic nonsense," Vulliamy writes. "By inviting Chomsky to give this lecture, Amnesty condemns itself to ridicule at best, hurtful malice at worst -- Amnesty joins the revisionists in spitting on the graves of the dead.". (shrink)
This is a volume of specially commissioned essays of analytical philosophy, on topics of current interest in ethics and the philosophy of logic and language. Among the topics discussed are the making of wicked promises, G. E. Moore's early ethical views, as well as indexicals, tense, indeterminism, conventionalism in mathematics, and identity and necessity. The essays are all by former students of Casimir Lewy, until recently Reader in Philosophy at the University of Cambridge and an exponent of a particularly thoroughgoing (...) form of philosophical analysis. Together, they represent some of the best work in these areas at present, and express what may be described as a characteristic 'Cambridge' voice. (shrink)
The editor's introduction discusses Clarence I. Lewis's conceptual pragmatism when compared with post-empiricist epistemology and argues that several Cartesian assumptions play a major role in the work, not unlike those of Logical Positivism. The suggestion is made that the Cartesian legacy still hidden in Logical Positivism turns out to be a rather heavy ballast for Lewis’s project of restructuring epistemology in a pragmatist key. More in detail, the sore point is the nature of inter-subjectivity. For Lewis, no (...) less than for the Logical Positivists at the time of the Protocols Controversy and Husserl in the Cartesian Meditations, this is a problem without a solution. The reason is that all these philosophers are apparently unable to realize that the existence of a plurality of knowing subjects cannot be treated at once both as a speculative problem and a methodological one. Lewis, thanks to his pragmatist approach both comes closer to the right answer and offers an even more naïve unsatisfactory solution to the pseudo-problem under discussion. The fact that he has clear in mind that inter-subjectivity means not only a plurality of linguistic utterances but also a co-existence of different kinds of practical behaviour. Eventually, the very idea of mind, the key-idea in the book, suffers from the above mentioned tension. In fact, if inter-subjective communication and action is considered at a methodological level, the very idea of mind would not need an analysis, and no kind of ‘reflexive’ analysis. Methodology might be limited to a ‘naïve’ level where the existence of the world and a plurality of subjects be taken as a bedrock of uncritically accepted evidence. Philosophical reflection on ultimate evidence, instead, would take a different approach, maybe the one Wittgenstein was putting into practice in the same years when Mind and the world order was written, namely it would be bound to question the very meaning of the idea of ‘mind’ as an undue fiction – the same carried out by Descartes – when he assumed the Cogito to be at once a body of self-evident truths and a thing or substance, the familiar Platonic idea of psyche or soul. (shrink)
Departing from the “Orientalist” view of the learned society in South Asia, this paper examines the role of the learned society in Southeast Asia as a site of sociability and intellectual exchange. It traces the emergence of such societies as independent, rather than official, initiatives, from nineteenth-century societies in Singapore to the Siam Society and Burma Research Society in the early twentieth century. Their journals provided pluralist interpretations of the nation, turning from grand histories of kings to new practices of (...) social history. While such societies were limited to a small circle of European and Asian literati, they also contributed to an emerging intellectual culture of libraries, public lectures, and universities. Moreover, via correspondence, travel, and exchanges of publications, such societies contributed to a growing sense of Southeast Asian regionalism, laying the institutional foundations for in-depth study for the region and the post-war emergence of Southeast Asian studies. (shrink)
In a well-known 1964 essay on the “recovery” of American religious history, Henry F. May observed that some scholars had “revived” religious interpretations of the nation's greatest political crises, including the Civil War. But there was more work to be done. “A religious, or partly religious explanation of the Civil War,” May suggested, would “rest on two assertions: that serious and intractable moral conflicts were important in causing the war and that in nineteenth-century America such conflicts were particularly difficult to (...) avoid or compromise because of the dominance of evangelical Protestantism in both sections.” In fact, both the importance of the moral conflict over slavery and the role of evangelicalism in intensifying hostilities were already attracting attention as historians reexamined previous emphases on economic factors and political bungling as explanations of a tragically unnecessary war. (shrink)
For many philosophical thinkers down through the centuries, the notion of a creation out of sheer nothing has been found to be quite unintelligible. Nevertheless the idea of creation preserves an important insight and needs to be freed from the difficulties of this traditional formulation. Alfred North Whitehead has offered an alternative theory of creation worth exploring: each individual actuality creates itself out of prior creative acts. God then serves to direct this creative process.
Court D. Lewis, author of Repentance and the Right to Forgiveness, presents a rights-based theory of ethics grounded in eirenéism, a needs-based theory of rights that seeks peaceful flourishing for all moral agents. This approach creates a moral relationship between victims and wrongdoers such that wrongdoers owe victims compensatory obligations. However, one further result is that wrongdoers may be owed forgiveness by victims. This leads to the “repugnant implication” that victims may be wrongdoers who do not forgive. Author (...) class='Hi'>Lewis addresses the “repugnant implication” by showing that victims are obligated to work toward forgiveness, if not forgiveness itself. Critic Gregory L. Bock argues that victims are not the only ones who can forgive, that the personal dimensions of forgiveness are overlooked, and that the force of the “repugnancy implication” may be questioned. Instead of rights-based eirenéism, Bock supports a virtue ethics framework. Instead of rights-based eirenéism, Bock encourages virtue ethics. Critic David Boersema raises questions about the binding nature of relationships, the dependency of flourishing upon forgiveness, and the nature of needs or rights. Boersema also questions the wisdom of a rights-based approach to forgiveness. Critic Jennifer Kling asks whether a rights-based approach is necessary to ground obligations to meet the needs of others: why not an ethics of care? If a rights-based approach is taken, perhaps a wrongdoer is obligated to not make forgiveness a life good. By disengaging this obligation, we avoid constraining a victim’s work toward forgiveness, especially when the wrongdoing is oppressive. Author Lewis responds to these objections. (shrink)
An inductive method Cλ in the λ-system of Carnap  is immodest, on evidence e, iff its estimate, on e, of its own accuracy is higher than its estimate, on e, of the accuracy of any rival method Cλ′. Immodesty seems to be a condition of stable trust: if you trusted a modest Cλ, you should start by trusting its advice to replace it by a rival that it estimates to be more accurate. One might guess that any Cλ would (...) be immodest on any evidence. But in  I proved that, under a certain accuracy measure taken from Carnap , §§ 20–21, there would be exactly one immodest Cλ. Unfortunately, that one sometimes turns out to be C0 ; and since nobody in his right mind would trust C0 we are then left with no acceptable Cλ. Stephen Spielman  has proposed a remedy: an estimate of accuracy, on evidence e, should disregard accuracy under circumstances that are ruled out by e. Spielman proves that if this change is made, any Cλ is immodest on any evidence. (shrink)
Experience from a three-year Home Office funded evaluation of a project intended to reduce school exclusions is used to explore methodological dilemmas raised by the current emphasis upon 'evidence-based' policy formation. The social construction of school exclusion rates poses problems of reliability and validity, especially when such rates are simultaneously being used for target setting. In principle, the concept of 'evidence-based' can refer to a wide variety of research questions and appropriate research methodologies. Despite this, moves towards interpreting 'evidence-based' as (...) predominantly measurement and outcomes oriented can be found both in government evaluation guidelines and in procedures for systematic reviews of research. Given the complexity of educational innovations, any neglect of research into the processes of change in naturalistic settings will not only lead to a restricted awareness of a project's impact but also to a failure to understand what certain apparent outcomes actually mean. (shrink)
This paper argues that the New Labour government's school effectiveness/target-setting strategy for reducing school exclusions is a flawed one. It deflects blame on to individual schools for problems which have as their source more deep-seated changes both in educational policy and in the wider society. A more positive way forward is to learn lessons from the recent research literature addressing the causes of the increase in school exclusions.
Oswald Spengler was one of the most important thinkers of the Weimar Republic. In Oswald Spengler and the Politics of Decline, Ben Lewis completely transforms our understanding of Spengler by showing how well-connected this philosopher was and how, at every stage of his career, he attempted to intervene politically in the very real-life events unfolding around him. The volume explains Spengler’s politics as the outcome of a dynamic interplay between his meta-historical considerations on world history on the one hand, (...) and the practical demands and considerations of Realpolitik on the other hand. (shrink)
This forum explores new directions in global intellectual history, engaging with the methodologies of global and transnational history to move beyond conventional territorial boundaries and master narratives. The papers focus on the period between the last decades of the nineteenth century and the first decades of the twentieth, an era in which the growth of cities, burgeoning print cultures and new transport and communications technology enabled the accelerated circulation and exchange of ideas throughout the globe. The proliferation of conferences, world (...) fairs, and international congresses, the growing professionalization and definition of academic disciplines, and the enhanced circulation of scholarly journals and correspondence enabled intellectuals around the world to converse in shared vocabularies. Much of the scholarship on early twentieth-century intellectual history in the non-Western world has been viewed through the binary relationships of metropole and colony, or as nationalist reactions to colonial domination. This cluster widens the framework to consider the way in which intellectuals formed scholarly networks and gathered multiple influences to articulate new visions of community and society within a wider world of ideas. The multiplicity of imperial and transnational pathways allowed not only for “centers of calculation” in colonial metropoles, but also for points of convergence and encounter outside Europe. As these papers show, the routes by which ideas travelled brought forth a global republic of letters, composed of diverse “centers” for the collection and production of knowledge by intellectuals operating in different parts of the world. (shrink)
Featuring new selections chosen by coeditor Lewis Vaughn, the third edition of Louis P. Pojman's The Moral Life: An Introductory Reader in Ethics and Literature brings together an extensive and varied collection of ninety-one classical and contemporary readings on ethical theory and practice. Integrating literature with philosophy in an innovative way, the book uses literary works to enliven and make concrete the ethical theory or applied issues addressed in each chapter. Literary works by Camus, Hawthorne, Hugo, Huxley, Ibsen, Le (...) Guin, Melville, Orwell, Styron, Tolstoy, and many others lead students into such philosophical concepts and issues as relativism; utilitarianism; virtue ethics; the meaning of life; freedom and autonomy; sex, love, and marriage; animal rights; and terrorism. Once introduced, these topics are developed further through readings by philosophers including Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Nozick, Singer, and Sartre. This unique anthology emphasizes the personal dimension of ethics, which is often ignored or minimized in ethics texts. It also incorporates chapter introductions, study questions, suggestions for further reading, and biographical sketches of the writers. The third edition brings the collection up-to-date, adding selections by Jane English, William Frankena, Don Marquis, John Stuart Mill, Mary Midgley, Thomas Nagel, Judith Jarvis Thomson, and J.O. Urmson. It also features a new chapter on euthanasia with essays by Dan W. Brock, J. Gay-Williams, and James Rachels. Ideal for introductory ethics courses, The Moral Life, Third Edition, also provides an engaging gateway into personal and social ethics for general readers. (shrink)
Hans Jonas (1903–1993) was one of the most important German-Jewish philosophers of the 20th century. A student of Martin Heidegger and close friend of Hannah Arendt, Jonas advanced the fields of phenomenology and practical ethics in ways that are just beginning to be appreciated in the English-speaking world. Drawing here on unpublished and newly translated material, Lewis Coyne brings together for the first time in English Jonas's philosophy of life, ethic of responsibility, political theory, philosophy of technology and bioethics. (...) -/- In Hans Jonas: Life, Technology and the Horizons of Responsibility, Coyne argues that the aim of Jonas's philosophy is to confront three critical issues inherent to modernity: nihilism, the ecological crisis and the transhumanist drive to biotechnologically enhance human beings. While these might at first appear disparate, for Jonas all follow from the materialist turn taken by Western thought from the 17th century onwards, and he therefore seeks to tackle all three issues at their collective point of origin. This book explores how Jonas develops a new categorical imperative of responsibility on the basis of an ontology that does justice to the purposefulness and dignity of life: to act in a way that does not compromise the future of humanity on earth. -/- Reflecting on this, as we face a potential future of ecological and societal collapse, Coyne forcefully demonstrates the urgency of Jonas's demand that humanity accept its newfound responsibility as the 'shepherd of beings'. (shrink)
David Lewis David Lewis is an American philosopher and one of the last generalists, in the sense that he was one of the last philosophers who contributed to the great majority of sub-fields of the discipline. He made central contributions in metaphysics, the philosophy of language, the philosophy of mind, and probabilistic and practical … Continue reading David Lewis →.