This article reviews three recent books that enhance our understanding of the work of French feminist Luce Irigaray: Marine Lover of Friedrich Nietzsche and The Irigaray Reader (both by Irigaray), and Philosophy in the Feminine, a commentary on Irigaray's work by Margaret Whitford. The author emphasizes a dynamic reading of Irigaray's philosophy and integrates theoretical concepts with poetic/utopian passages from the works.
This article reviews three recent books that enhance our understanding of the work of French feminist Luce Irigaray: Marine Lover of Friedrich Nietzsche and The Irigaray Reader, and Philosophy in the Feminine, a commentary on Irigaray's work by Margaret Whitford. The author emphasizes a dynamic reading of Irigaray's philosophy and integrates theoretical concepts with poetic/utopian passages from the works.
This is an interview with Professor Lynda Birke, one of the key figures of feminist science studies. She is a pioneer of feminist biology and of materialist feminist thought, as well as of the new and emerging field of hum-animal studies. This interview was conducted over email in two time periods, in the spring of 2008 and 2010. The format allowed for comments on previous writings and an engagement in an open-ended dialogue. Professor Birke talks about her key arguments (...) and outlooks on a changing field of research. The work of this English biologist is typical of a long and continuous feminist engagement with biology and ontological matters that reaches well beyond the more recently articulated ‘material turn’ of feminist theory. It touches upon feminist issues beyond the usual comfort zones of gender constructionism and human-centred research. Perhaps less recognized than for instance the names of Donna Haraway or Karen Barad, Lynda Birke’s oeuvre is part of the same long-standing and twofold critique from feminist scholars qua trained natural scientists. On the one hand, theirs is a powerful critique of biological determinism; on the other, an acutely observed contemporary critique of how merely cultural or socially reductionist approaches to the effervescently lively and biological might leave the corporeal, environmental or non-human animal critically undertheorized within feminist scholarship. In highlighting the work and arguments of Lynda Birke, it is hoped here to provide an accessible introduction to the critical questions and challenges that circumvent contemporary discussions within feminist technoscience as theory and political practice. (shrink)
The book then addresses the human/animal opposition implicit in much feminist theorizing, arguing that the opposition helps to maintain the essentialism that feminists have so often criticized. The final chapter brings us back from ideas of what 'the animal' is, to ask how these questions might relate to environmental politics, including ecofeminism and animal rights.
Birke, a feminist biologist who has written extensively on the connections between feminism and science, seeks to bridge the gap between feminist cultural analysis and science by looking "inside" the body, using ideas in anatomy and physiology to develop the feminist view that the biological body is socially and culturally constructed. She rejects the assumption that the body's functioning is fixed and unchanging, claiming that biological science offers more than just a deterministic narrative of how nature works. Annotation copyrighted by (...) Book News, Inc., Portland, OR. (shrink)
This important new book offers the first full-length interpretation of the thought of Martin Heidegger with respect to irony. In a radical reading of Heidegger's major works (from Being and Time through the ‘Rector's Address' and the ‘Letter on Humanism' to ‘The Origin of the Work of Art' and the Spiegel interview), Andrew Haas does not claim that Heidegger is simply being ironic. Rather he argues that Heidegger's writings make such an interpretation possible - perhaps even necessary. Heidegger_begins_ Being (...) and Time with a quote from Plato, a thinker famous for his insistence upon Socratic irony. The Irony of Heidegger takes seriously the apparently curious decision to introduce the threat of irony even as philosophy begins in earnest to raise the question of the meaning of being. Through a detailed and thorough reading of Heidegger's major texts and the fundamental questions they raise, Haas reveals that one of the most important philosophers of the 20th century can be read with as much irony as earnestness. The Irony of Heidegger attempts to show that the essence of this irony lies in uncertainty, and that the entire project of onto-heno-chrono-phenomenology, therefore needs to be called into question. >. (shrink)
Verificationism has been a hallmark of logical empiricism. According to this principle, a sentence is insignificant in a certain sense if its truth value cannot be determined. Although logical empiricists strove for decades to develop an adequate principle of verification, they failed to resolve its problems. This led to a general abandonment of the verificationist project in the early 1960s. In the last 50 years, this view has received tremendously bad press. Today it is mostly regarded as an outdated historical (...) concept. Theories that have evolved since the abandonment of verificationism can, however, help overcome some of its key problems. More specifically, an adequate criterion of significance can be derived from a combination of modern theories of justification and belief revision, along with a formal semantics for counterfactuals. In view of these potential improvements, the abandonment of verificationism appears premature. Half a century following its decline, it might be about time to revisit this disreputable view. The author argues in favor of a weak form of verificationism. This approach could be referred to as minimal verificationism, as it involves a weakening of traditional verificationist principles in various respects while maintaining their core idea. (shrink)
This article addresses some of the ways in which the development of xenotransplantation, the use of nonhuman animals as organ donors, are presented in media accounts. Although xenotransplantation raises many ethical and philosophical questions, media coverage typically minimizes these. At issue are widespread public concerns about the transgression of species boundaries, particularly those between humans and other animals. We consider how these are constructed in media narratives, and how those narratives, in turn, rely on particular scientific discourses that posit species (...) boundary crossing as unproblematic. (shrink)
Here eight outstanding scholars from the U.S. and Europe reflect upon the issues. They are Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Ralph McInerny, Robert Spamann, Servais Pinckaers, Wojciech Giertych, Ignacio Carrasco de Paula, Carlo Cafarra, and John M. Haas. Anyone interested in the advancement of human, moral, and spiritual values will welcome this clarifying book.
Malgré l’adoption de la Convention Internationale des Droits de l’Enfant en 1989, la question de savoir pourquoi l’enfant devrait détenir des droits fait toujours débat. En raison de sa jeunesse, l’enfant est habituellement considéré comme n’étant pas suffisamment rationnel pour détenir les mêmes droits que les adultes. Mais l’enfant est aussi reconnu comme une personne humaine dont les droits ne devraient pas être entravés. Bien que durant les vingt dernières années, les études en droits de l’enfant se soient multipliées, ce (...) domaine de recherche ne semble plus progresser significativement. Peut-être la question des droits de l’enfant, habituellement comparés aux droits de l’Homme, pourrait-elle être différemment posée. En effet, comprendre pourquoi un enfant devrait avoir des droits implique de réfléchir à ce qui peut limiter ses droits et donc, en premier lieu, à ce qui fonde moralement les droits parentaux. Cet article réinvestit la question des droits de l’enfant à partir d’une nouvelle perspective qui n’est pas celle des droits de l’Homme, mais celle des fondements moraux des droits parentaux. Une perspective déjà adoptée au XVIIème siècle par le philosophe britannique John Locke sous la forme de la théorie de l’investissement parental. (shrink)
This monograph presents an interpretation of Descartes's dualism, which differs from the standard reading called 'classical separatist dualism' claiming that the mind can exist without the body. It argues that, contrary to what it is commonly claimed, Descartes’s texts suggest an emergent creationist substance dualism, according to which the mind is a nonphysical substance (created and maintained by God), which cannot begin to think without a well-disposed body. According to this interpretation, God’s laws of nature endow each human body with (...) the power to be united to an immaterial soul. While the soul does not directly come from the body, the mind can be said to emerge from the body in the sense that it cannot be created by God independently from the body. The divine creation of a human mind requires a well-disposed body, a physical categorical basis. This kind of emergentism is consistent with creationism and does not necessarily entail that the mind cannot survive the body. This early modern view has some connections with Hasker’s substance emergent dualism (1999). Indeed, Hasker states that the mind is a substance emerging at one time from neurons and that consciousness has causal powers which effects cannot be explained by physical neurons. An emergent unified self-existing entity emerges from the brain on which it acts upon. For its proponents, Hasker’s view explains what Descartes’s dualism fails to explain, especially why the mind regularly interacts with one and only one body. After questioning the notion of emergence, the author argues that the theory of emergent creationist substance dualism that she attributes to Descartes is a more appropriate alternative because it faces fewer problems than its rivals. This monograph is valuable for anyone interested in the history of early modern philosophy and contemporary philosophy of mind. (shrink)
This book is about feminism, its critics, and its possible directions for change. The nine chapters raise questions about theories of sexual difference, power, justice and history. A central theme concerns the prospects for combining feminist with other, non-feminist, political perspectives.
Controversies in science are an essential feature of scientific practice: defined here as current problems that are unresolved because there are no accepted procedures by which they can be resolved or there are differing assumptions that affect the interpretation of evidence. Although there has been much attention in science education literature addressing socio-scientific and historical controversies in science, less has been paid to the teaching of contemporary scientific controversies. Using semi-structured qualitative interviews with 18 teachers at different career stages in (...) England, we investigated teachers’ social representations of scientific controversies using the discourse of the collective subject. We found a lack of controversy in teachers’ responses. Whilst scientific controversies were seen as an essential feature of how science works, they were not viewed as essential in science education and were represented as a distraction and dealt with informally, outside the planned curriculum and in response to students’ questions. Subject knowledge was considered a barrier. We argue that teaching about carefully selected scientific controversies has the potential to contribute to teachers’ and students’ understandings of science and the nature of science. There are perceived to be few opportunities for teachers to exercise this in the English context. We suggest how the collective subject discourses might be used to open up a discussion about teaching controversies in professional learning situations. Materials to stimulate discussion of scientific controversies could be useful in future curriculum development in science, but these would need to address the barriers of subject knowledge, access to literature and conflict with assessment-related priorities and a perceived need to advocate for trust in science. (shrink)
The call to “know thyself” is neither a matter of presence and absence to self, nor the necessary or unnecessary possibility or impossibility of self-knowledge ‒ rather it is a problem. And the oracle gives a sign of this problem by implying that which is neither spoken nor concealed. But if implication is the problem of the sign, it is because it suspends the self and the very possibility of self-knowledge.
In this paper I propose a reading of Plotinus Enneads VI.1-3 [41-43] On the genera of being which regards this treatise as a coherent whole in which Aristotle's Categories is explored in a way that turns it into a decisive contribution to Plotinus' Platonic ontology. In addition, I claim that Porphyry's Isagoge and commentaries on the Categories start by adopting Plotinus' point of view, including his notion of genus, and proceed by explaining its consequences for a more detailed reading of (...) the Categories. After Plotinus' integration of the Categories into the Platonic frame of thought Porphyry saw the possibilities of exploiting the Peripatetic tradition both as a means to support the Platonic interpretation of the Categories and as a source for solutions to traditional questions. His allegiance to a division of being into ten, and his emphasis on semantics rather than ontology can be explained from this orientation. In the light of our investigation the alleged disagreement between Plotinus and Porphyry on the Categories changes its appearance completely. There are differences, but these can be best explained as confirmation and extension of Plotinus' perspective on the Categories and its role in Platonism. (shrink)
Many living with companion animals hope for “good relationships” based on trust, mutuality, and cooperation. Relationships develop from mutual actions, yet research often overlooks nonhumans as mindful actors within relationships. This is a study of horse/human dyads, using multimethod approaches intended to include horses as participants. We ask: can “good relationships” be observed, especially when the pair know each other well? We studied familiar/unfamiliar pairs, negotiating simple obstacles, to explore qualities of cooperation between pairs. Interviews with human participants elicited perceptions (...) of horses’ “personalities” and reactions. We analyzed video recordings of interactions and also showed them to external observers. We identified differences in attention, tension and coordination: familiar pairs were more coordinated, mutually attentive, and less tense, and they showed less resistance. That is, some relationships displayed discernible qualities of “working together.” We cannot know nonhuman animals’ experiences, but knowing how they behave says something about their agency within interspecies relationships. (shrink)
Um 1800 verstärkt sich das Problembewusstsein für eine der wissenschaftlichen Reflexion adäquate Darstellung, da sich die Überzeugung durchsetzt, die Sprache sei nicht nur ein Werkzeug, sondern vielmehr ein »bildendes Organ des Gedankens«. Das enge Verhältnis von Aussage und Ausdruck rückt die Wissenschaft in der deutschen Tradition geradezu zwangsläufig in die Nähe zur Literatur. Dabei zeigt sich das wissenschaftliche Selbstverständnis dieser Jahre in der Frage v.a. seiner Adressierung von einer interessanten Paradoxie geprägt. So soll der jeweilige Sprachgebrauch überhaupt erst den szientistischen (...) Anspruch wissenschaftlicher Projekte beglaubigen und diese gleichsam als Spezialdiskurse legitimieren, zugleich muss der ideale Adressat der Wissenschaft solche Spezialdiskurse aber immer auch überschreiten. J. G. Fichte etwa weist den Vorwurf der »Unverständlichkeit« seiner »Wissenschaftslehre« als implizites Verlangen nach »Seichtigkeit« seitens der Leser zurück, zugleich aber erlegt er dem Wissenschaftler die Aufgabe auf, einen Beitrag zum »Fortgang des Menschengeschlechts« zu leisten. Derartigen Spannungen spürt der Band im Kontext vornehmlich des Niedergangs der Rhetorik und der Neubegründung der Universität nach. (shrink)
This paper explores how horses are represented in the discourses of "natural horsemanship" , an approach to training and handling horses that advocates see as better than traditional methods. In speaking about their horses, NH enthusiasts move between two registers: On one hand, they use a quasi-scientific narrative, relying on terms and ideas drawn from ethology, to explain the instinctive behavior of horses. Within this mode of narrative, the horse is "other" and must be understood through the human learning to (...) communicate and through appropriate training. On the other hand, NH enthusiasts—like many horse owners—seek to emphasize partnership. In this type of discourse, people portray their horses as almost human. The tensions between these two ways of talking about horses reflect contradictory ideas about control versus freedom in relating to horses, especially as related to emotions expressed by caregivers about their relationships with horses. (shrink)
Interrogation of metaphysics -- Difference of absolute particularity -- From science to speculation -- Being multiple-- Quality of quantity -- Measure of multiplicity -- Conceptual subjectivity -- Conceptual objectivity -- Idea of totality -- Metaphysics of multiplicity.
Jaap Mansfeld and Frans de Haas bring together in this volume a distinguished international team of ancient philosophers, presenting a systematic, chapter-by-chapter study of one of the key texts in Aristotle's science and metaphysics: the first book of On Generation and Corruption. In GC I Aristotle provides a general outline of physical processes such as generation and corruption, alteration, and growth, and inquires into their differences. He also discusses physical notions such as contact, action and passion, and mixture. These (...) notions are fundamental to Aristotle's physics and cosmology, and more specifically to his theory of the four elements and their transformations. Moreover, references to GC elsewhere in the Aristotelian corpus show that in GC I Aristotle is doing heavy conceptual groundwork for more refined applications of these notions in, for example, the psychology of perception and thought, and the study of animal generation and corruption. Ultimately, biology is the goal of the series of enquiries in which GC I demands a position of its own immediately after the Physics. The contributors deal with questions of structure and text constitution and provide thought-provoking discussions of each chapter of GC I. New approaches to the issues of how to understand first matter, and how to evaluate Aristotle's notion of mixture are given ample space. Throughout, Aristotle's views of the theories of the Presocratics and Plato are shown to be crucial in understanding his argument. (shrink)
What is time? Neither the numbering of the motion of things nor their schema, but their way of being. In language, time shows itself as tense. But every verb has both tense and aspect. So what is aspect? Irreducible to tense, it is the way in which anything is at any time whatsoever. Thus the way things are, their being, is not merely temporal – for it is just as aspectual.
In this paper, we report on a study of people who keep horses for leisure riding; the study was based on a qualitative analysis of written comments made by people keeping horses, focusing on how they care for them and how they describe horse behavior. These commentaries followed participation in an online survey investigating management practices. The responses clustered around two significant themes: the first centered around people’s methods of caring for their animal and the dependence of such care upon (...) external influences like human social contexts. The second theme centers on the “life stories” people constructed for their horse, usually to explain aspects of the animal’s behavior; in particular, many spoke in terms of a rescue narrative and saw their horses’ lives as being much better now than in the animal’s previous life situation. We argue that decisions about equine well-being are made within specific social communities, which create consensus around particular ideas of what is good for horses. To ensure the well-being of animals means taking these communities and their knowledges into account. (shrink)
Jaap Mansfeld and Frans de Haas bring together in this volume a distinguished international team of ancient philosophers, presenting a systematic, chapter-by-chapter study of one of the key texts in Aristotle's science and metaphysics: the first book of On Generation and Corruption.In GC I Aristotle provides a general outline of physical processes such as generation and corruption, alteration, and growth, and inquires into their differences. He also discusses physical notions such as contact, action and passion, and mixture. These notions (...) are fundamental to Aristotle's physics and cosmology, and more specifically to his theory of the four elements and their transformations. Moreover, references to GC elsewhere in the Aristotelian corpus show that in GC I Aristotle is doing heavy conceptual groundwork for more refined applications of these notions in, for example, the psychology of perception and thought, and the study of animal generation and corruption. Ultimately, biology is the goal of the series of enquiries in which GC I demands a position of its own immediately after the Physics.The contributors deal with questions of structure and text constitution and provide thought-provoking discussions of each chapter of GC I. New approaches to the issues of how to understand first matter, and how to evaluate Aristotle's notion of mixture are given ample space. Throughout, Aristotle's views of the theories of the Presocratics and Plato are shown to be crucial in understanding his argument. (shrink)
This is the first full discussion of Philoponus' account of matter. It is shown here that philosophical problems in Neoplatonism motivated the definition of prime matter as three-dimensional extension, and that Plotinus, Syrianus, and Proclus prepared the way for Philoponus.
This essay addresses the troubling and uncanny figure of Mother in feminist theory, psychoanalytic theory, literary criticism, and real life. Readings of feminist literary criticism and the films Alien and Aliens explore the liminality of Mother and the consequences for feminist thought and practice of the persistent narrative modes (the sentimental and the gothic) locatable in all of these discourses on/of Motherhood.
This paper examines the rise of what is popularly called "natural horsemanship" , as a definitive cultural change within the horse industry. Practitioners are often evangelical about their methods, portraying NH as a radical departure from traditional methods. In doing so, they create a clear demarcation from the practices and beliefs of the conventional horse-world. Only NH, advocates argue, properly understands the horse. Dissenters, however, contest the benefits to horses as well as the reliance in NH on disputed concepts of (...) the natural. Advocates, furthermore, sought to rename technologies associated with riding while simultaneously condemning technologies used in conventional training . These contested differences create boundaries and enact social inclusion and exclusion, which the paper explores. For horses, the impact of NH is ambiguous: Depending on practitioners, effects could be good or bad. However, for the people involved, NH presents a radical change—which they see as offering markedly better ways of relating to horses and a more inclusive social milieu. (shrink)
In this article we report the findings of a randomised control clinical trial that assessed the impact of a Philosophy for Children program and replicated a previous study conducted in Scotland by Topping and Trickey. A Cognitive Abilities Test was administered as a pretest and a posttest to randomly selected experimental groups and control groups. The students in the experimental group engaged in philosophy lessons in a setting of structured, collaborative inquiry in their language arts classes for one hour per (...) week for a number of weeks. The control group received the standard language arts curriculum in that one hour. The study found that the seventh grade students who had experienced the P4C program showed significant gains relative to those in the seventh grade control group at a high level of statistical significance, but the eighth grade students in the experimental group did not show such gains over the eighth grade control group. It was discovered that the seventh grade teachers started the program early in the school year and continued it for a period of 22 to 26 weeks, while the eighth grade teachers started much later and used the program for only 4 to 10 weeks. Our findings suggest that the P4C program must involve students in activities for a significant period of time before the program shows results, but that a meaningful impact on students’ cognitive abilities can be achieved in about 24 weeks of lessons, less than half the time evidenced by the study by Topping and Trickey. (shrink)
The philosopher Enrique Dussel offers a critical analysis of European construction of indigenous peoples which he calls "transmodern." His theory is especially relevant to feminist and other concerns about the potential disabling effects of postmodern approaches for political action and the development of theory. Dussel divides modernity into two concurrent paradigms. Reflection on them suggests that modernism and postmodernism should not be too strongly distinguished. In conclusion, his approach is compared with that of Mohanty.
The aim of this article is to clarify an aspect of Descartes’s conception of mind that seriously impacts on the standard objections against Cartesian dualism. By a close reading of Descartes’s writings on imagination, I argue that the capacity to imagine does not inhere as a mode in the mind itself, but only in the embodied mind, that is, a mind that is not united to the body does not possess the faculty to imagine. As a mode considered as a (...) general property, and not as an instance of it, belongs to the essence of the substance, and as imagination (like sensation) arises from the mind-body union, then the problem arises of knowing to what extent a Cartesian embodied mind is separable from the body. (shrink)
Utilizing the writings of Pierre Bourdieu and Sheldon Wolin,this paper introduces a special issue on ``Educational Rights andEntitlements.'' Its purpose is to characterize and critique `the box ofliberalism' that both advances and constrains what is conceived andenacted in education. Following it are a set of significantcontributions from the sixth biennial conference of the InternationalNetwork of Philosophers of Education, August 1998, Ankara.