Part I: Building blocks. 1. Folk convictions -- 2. Doubts about libertarianism -- 3. Nihilism and revisionism -- 4. Building a better theory -- Part II. A theory of moral responsibility. 5. The primacy of reasons -- 6. Justifying the practice -- 7. Responsible agency -- 8. Blame and desert -- 9. History and manipulation --10. Some conclusions.
Kris McDaniel argues that there are different ways in which things exist. For instance, past things don't exist in the same way as present things. Numbers don't exist in the same way as physical objects; nor do holes, which are real, but less real than what they are in. McDaniel's theory of being illuminates a wide range of metaphysical topics.
In this paper, I formulate, elucidate, and defend a version of modal realism with overlap, the view that objects are literally present at more than one possible world. The version that I defend has several interesting features: it is committed to an ontological distinction between regions of spacetime and material objects; it is committed to compositional pluralism, which is the doctrine that there is more than one fundamental part-whole relation; and it is the modal analogue of endurantism, which is the (...) doctrine that objects persist through time by being wholly present at each moment they are located. (shrink)
Testemunhos na primeira pessoa dados por quem aceitou recordar os factos, os dramas e os sucessos do tempo de mudança e transformação vertiginosa que constituiu o período de vida do Padre Manuel Antunes, professor que marcou indelevelmente várias gerações.
It is widely agreed upon that aesthetic properties, such as grace, balance, and elegance, are perceived. I argue that aesthetic properties are experientially attributed to some non‐perceptible objects. For example, a mathematical proof can be experienced as elegant. In order to give a unified explanation of the experiential attribution of aesthetic properties to both perceptible and non‐perceptible objects, one has to reject the idea that aesthetic properties are perceived. I propose an alternative view: the affective account. I argue that the (...) standard case of experiential aesthetic property attribution is affective experience. (shrink)
Johannes von Kries’s Spielraum-theory is regarded as one of the most important philosophical contributions of the nineteenth century to an objective interpretation of probability. This paper aims at a critical and contextual analysis of von Kries’s approach: It is contextual insofar as it reconstructs the Spielraum-theory in the historical setting that formed his scientific and philosophical outlook. It is critical insofar as it unfolds systematic tensions and inconsistencies which are rooted in this context, especially in the grave change of mechanism (...) which took place in the late nineteenth century. In this regard, the paper focuses on von Kries’s understanding of natural laws and nomological knowledge in relation to his concept of objective probability. While the formal approach of the Spielraum-theory—as far as developed by von Kries—seems sound, his epistemological claims with respect to nomological knowledge sustain classical mechanism and are hence difficult to substantiate from the point of view of modern science. (shrink)
I argue that extended simples are possible. The argument given here parallels an argument given elsewhere for the claim that the shape properties of material objects are extrinsic, not intrinsic as is commonly supposed. In the final section of the paper, I show that if the shape properties of material objects are extrinsic, the most popular argument against extended simples fails.
Open access to research data has become an issue in many contemporary sciences. One of them is Historical Climatology, a discipline drawing on archival materials to study the climate’s past. Based on fieldwork, the article explores the construction of a shared database by a group of historical climatologists and describes the strategies and hopes built into that infrastructure. I examine how the possession and provision of data relate to issues of recognition and legitimacy, thereby turning database construction into a practice (...) of social import. Further, I argue that taking into account the diversity of research materials from which climate data is constituted – historical documents, tree-rings, ice-cores, etc. – is crucial for apprehending both the status of distinct types of data and the status of distinct research groups in the scientific field under investigation here. (shrink)
BackgroundResearch with cerebral organoids is beginning to make significant progress in understanding the etiology of autism spectrum disorder. Brain organoid models can be grown from the cells of donors with ASD. Researchers can explore the genetic, developmental, and other factors that may give rise to the varieties of autism. Researchers could study all of these factors together with brain organoids grown from cells originating from ASD individuals. This makes brain organoids unique from other forms of ASD research. They are like (...) a multi-tool, one with significant versatility for the scope of ASD research and clinical applications. There is hope that brain organoids could one day be used for precision medicine, like developing tailored ASD drug treatments.Main bodyBrain organoid researchers often incorporate the medical model of disability when researching the origins of ASD, especially when the research has the specific aim of potentially finding tailored clinical treatments for ASD individuals. The neurodiversity movement—a developmental disability movement and paradigm that understands autism as a form of natural human diversity—will potentially disagree with approaches or aims of cerebral organoid research on ASD. Neurodiversity advocates incorporate a social model of disability into their movement, which focuses more on the social, attitudinal, and environmental barriers rather than biophysical or psychological deficits. Therefore, a potential conflict may arise between these perspectives on how to proceed with cerebral organoid research regarding neurodevelopmental conditions, especially ASD.ConclusionsHere, we present these perspectives and give at least three initial recommendations to achieve a more holistic and inclusive approach to cerebral organoid research on ASD. These three initial starting points can build bridges between researchers and the neurodiversity movement. First, neurodiverse individuals should be included as co-creators in both the scientific process and research communication. Second, clinicians and neurodiverse communities should have open and respectful communication. Finally, we suggest a continual reconceptualization of illness, impairment, disability, behavior, and person. (shrink)
Plural definite descriptions across many languages display two well-known properties. First, they can give rise to so-called non-maximal readings, in the sense that they ‘allow for exceptions’. Second, while they tend to have a quasi-universal quantificational force in affirmative sentences, they tend to be interpreted existentially in the scope of negation. Building on previous works, we offer a theory in which sentences containing plural definite expressions trigger a family of possible interpretations, and where general principles of language use account for (...) their interpretation in various contexts and syntactic environments. Our theory solves a number of problems that these previous works encounter, and has broader empirical coverage in that it offers a precise analysis for sentences that display complex interactions between plural definites, quantifiers and bound variables, as well as for cases involving non-distributive predicates. The resulting proposal is briefly compared with an alternative proposal by Križ, which has similar coverage but is based on a very different architecture and sometimes makes subtly different predictions. (shrink)
My reading of Tuvel’s defense of transracialism focuses on her critiques of three main objections to a transracial identity. Tuvel attempts to show how her defense of transracialism stands in the face of these objections. However, I argue that her position is not sufficiently immune to them. In other words, my response delineates the ways in which all three objections remain, and effectively undermine her argument in favor of transracial identities. Additionally, through the question of white allyship, I ask about (...) the moral and political consequences of choosing to identify as transracial. I show that, without a clear account of what an existential choice of racial transitioning implies for allyship across race, Tuvel does not sufficiently establish the differences between the historical constitutions of racialized and sexualized identities. In failing to engage with these moral/political implications, Tuvel’s position does not address the complex relationship between individual agency and collective accountability. (shrink)
Recently, I’ve championed the doctrine that fundamentally different sorts of things exist in fundamentally different ways.1 On this view, what it is for an entity to be can differ across ontological categories.2 Although historically this doctrine was very popular, and several important challenges to this doctrine have been dealt with, I suspect that contemporary metaphysicians will continue to treat this view with suspicion until it is made clearer when one is warranted in positing different modes of existence.3 I address this (...) concern here. The question of when to posit ways of being is closely related to a more general question: when should one think that some philosophically interesting expression is analogous? Accordingly, my strategy here is as follows. First, I briefly explain my interpretation of ontological pluralism, the doctrine that there are ways of being.4 Second, I introduce the notion of an analogous term, and show how, on most ways of implementing ontological pluralism, “existence” is analogous. Third, I discuss two sufficient conditions for when one is warranted in claiming that a philosophically interesting term is analogous. Fourth, I present a series of ontological schemes, each of which satisfies at least one of the sufficient conditions. The upshot is this: if you are attracted to one of these ontologies, you have reason to believe in ways of being. The careful reader will have noted the apparent modesty of my conclusion. Unfortunately, I do not believe that one could ever be rationally required to believe in ways of being. Still, in general a metaphysic is a live option to the extent that it is shown to be rationally permissible to believe. Since the apparent consensus among contemporary analytic metaphysicians is that believing that things can exist in different ways is silly or confused, establishing the rational permissibility of belief in ways of being is a non-trivial task. Let us begin. (shrink)
Let us agree that everything that there is exists, and that to be, to be real, and to exist are one and the same. Does everything that there is exist to the same degree? Or do some things exist more than others? Are there gradations of being? I argue that some entities exist more than others. Moreover, many of the notions in play in contemporary metaphysical discourse, such as fundamentality, perfect naturalness, and grounding ought to be cashed out in terms (...) of degree of existence. (shrink)
Over the last few decades there has been a strong narrative turn within the humanities and social sciences in general and educational studies in particular. Especially Jerome Bruner’s theory of narrative as a specific ‘mode of knowing’ was very important for this growing body of work. To understand how the narrative mode works Bruner proposes to study narratives ‘at their far reach’—as an art form—and on several occasions he refers to the dramatistic pentad as an important method for ‘unpacking’ narratives. (...) The pentad proposed by Bruner to study narratives was developed by the American philosopher and rhetorician Kenneth Burke and is embedded in his general linguistic theory of dramatism. From an educational perspective Bruner’s reference to the work of Burke has not been elaborated upon thus far. In this paper we aim to take Bruner’s suggestion at hand and explore how his educational theory of narrative as a mode of knowing can indeed be enriched by Kenneth Burke’s theory and method of dramatism. We claim that specifically the rhetorical framework that is developed by dramatism offers an important perspective about perspectives for education in a context that is increasingly confronted with a plurality of interpretive frameworks. (shrink)
This paper has the aim of making Johannes von Kries’s masterpiece, Die Principien der Wahrscheinlichkeitsrechnung of 1886, a little more accessible to the modern reader in three modest ways: first, it discusses the historical background to the book ; next, it summarizes the basic elements of von Kries’s approach ; and finally, it examines the so-called “principle of cogent reason” with which von Kries’s name is often identified in the English literature.
Essays by some of the world's leading educators provide a revolutionary portrait of new ideas and developments in education that can influence the possibility of social and political change. The authors take into account such diverse terrain as feminism, ecology, media, and individual liberty in their pursuit of new ideas that can inform the fundamental practice of education and promote a more humane civil society. The book consolidates recent thinking just as it reflects on emerging new lines of critical theory.
Peter van Inwagen presented a powerful argument against the Principle of Sufficient Reason, which I henceforth abbreviate as ‘PSR’. For decades, the consensus was that this argument successfully refuted PSR. However, now a growing consensus holds that van Inwagen’s argument is fatally flawed, at least when ‘sufficient reason’ is understood in terms of ground, for on this understanding, an ineliminable premiss of van Inwagen’s argument is demonstrably false and cannot be repaired. I will argue that this growing consensus is mistaken (...) and that a powerful argument relevantly similar to van Inwagen’s should still concern us, even when we understand ‘sufficient reason’ in terms of ground. (shrink)
We argue that desire is an attitude that relates a person not to one proposition but rather to two, the first of which we call the object of the desire and the second of which we call the condition of the desire. This view of desire is initially motivated by puzzles about conditional desires. It is not at all obvious how best to draw the distinction between conditional and unconditional desires. In this paper we examine extant attempts to analyse conditional (...) desire. From the failures of those attempts, we draw a moral that leads us to the correct account of conditional desires. We then extend the account of conditional desires to an account of all desires. We attempt to explain the distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic desire in light of our account of desire. We show how to use our account to solve Wollheim’s paradox of democracy and to save modus ponens. Finally, we extend the account of desire to related phenomena, such as conditional promises, intentions, and commands. (shrink)
I am attracted to ontological pluralism, the doctrine that some things exist in a different way than other things.1 For the ontological pluralist, there is more to learn about an object’s existential status than merely whether it is or is not: there is still the question of how that entity exists. By contrast, according to the ontological monist, either something is or it isn’t, and that’s all there is say about a thing’s existential status. We appear to be to be (...) ontological committed to what I will call almost nothings. Examples of almost nothings include holes, cracks, and shadows; almost nothings thrive in the absence of ‘positive’ entities such as donuts, walls, and sunlight. Let’s focus on holes, since the literature on them is voluminous.2 We quantify over holes, and even count them: we say, for example, that there are some holes in the cheese, seven to be precise. We ascribe features to them and talk as though they stand in relations: that hole is three feet wide, much wider than that tire over there. Holes apparently persist through time, as evidenced by the fact that my sweater has the same hole in it as the last time you saw me wear it. We even talk as though holes are causally efficacious: my ankle was badly sprained because I stepped in that hole in the sidewalk.3 It seems then that we believe in holes. If our beliefs are true, holes must enjoy some kind of reality. This puts the ontological monist in an uncomfortable position. According to her, everything that there is enjoys the same kind of reality, which is the kind of reality enjoyed by full-fledged concrete entities such as ourselves. She is committed to the unpleasant claim that holes are just as real as concretia, a claim that is apt to be met with incredulous stares by those not acquainted with contemporary metaphysics. Roy Sorensen (2008, p. 19) notes the tension almost nothings generate for ontological monists: ‘… it feels paradoxical to say that absences exist—but no better to say that absences do not exist’.. (shrink)
BackgroundPlagiarism is considered as serious research misconduct, together with data fabrication and falsification. However, little is known about biomedical researchers’ views on plagiarism. Moreover, it has been argued – based on limited empirical evidence – that perceptions of plagiarism depend on cultural and other determinants. The authors explored, by means of an online survey among 46 reputable universities in Europe and China, how plagiarism is perceived by biomedical researchers in both regions.MethodsWe collected work e-mail addresses of biomedical researchers identified through (...) the websites of 13 reputable universities in Europe and 33 reputable universities in China and invited them to participate in an online anonymous survey. Our questionnaire was designed to assess respondents’ views about plagiarism by asking whether they considered specific practices as plagiarism. We analyzed if respondents in China and Europe responded differently, using logistic regression analysis with adjustments for demographic and other relevant factors.ResultsThe authors obtained valid responses from 204 researchers based in China and 826 researchers based in Europe. Copying text from someone else’s publication without crediting the source, using idea from someone else’s publication without crediting the source and republishing one’s own work in another language without crediting the source were considered as plagiarism by 98, 67 and 64%, respectively. About one-third of the respondents reported to have been unsure whether they had been plagiarizing.Overall, the pattern of responses was similar among respondents based in Europe and China. Nevertheless, for some items significant differences did occur in disadvantage of Chinese respondents.ConclusionsFindings indicate that nearly all biomedical researchers understand the most obvious forms of plagiarism, but uncertainties and doubts were apparent for many aspects. And the minority of researchers who did not recognize some types of plagiarism as plagiarism was larger among China-based respondents than among Europe-based respondents. The authors conclude that biomedical researchers need clearer working definitions of plagiarism in order to deal with grey zones. (shrink)
Friends of states of affairs and structural universals appeal to a relation, structure-making, that is allegedly a kind of composition relation: structure-making ?builds? facts out of particulars and universals, and ?builds? structural universals out of unstructured universals. D. M. Armstrong, an eminent champion of structures, endorses two interesting theses concerning composition. First, that structure-making is a composition relation. Second, that it is not the only (fundamental) composition relation: Armstrong also believes in a mode of composition that he calls mereological, and (...) which he takes to be the only kind of composition recognized by his philosophical adversaries, such as David Lewis. Armstrong, accordingly, is a kind of pluralist about compositional relations: there is more than one way to make wholes from parts. In this paper, I critically evaluate Armstrong's compositional pluralism. (shrink)
A conception of probability that can be traced back to Johannes von Kries is introduced: the “Spielraum” or range conception. Its close connection to the so-called method of arbitrary functions is highlighted. Possible interpretations of it are discussed, and likewise its scope and its relation to certain current interpretations of probability. Taken together, these approaches form a class of interpretations of probability in its own right, but also with its own problems. These, too, are introduced, discussed, and proposals in response (...) to them are surveyed, some of which also go back to von Kries. (shrink)
The problem of qualitative heterogeneity is to explain how an extended simple can enjoy qualitative variation across its spatial or temporal axes, given that it lacks both spatial and temporal parts. I discuss how friends of extended simples should address the problem of qualitative heterogeneity. I present a series of arguments designed to show that rather than appealing to fundamental distributional properties one should appeal to tiny and short-lived tropes. Along the way, issues relevant to debates about material composition, persistence (...) over time and existence monism are discussed.  . (shrink)
Presupposition, vagueness, and oddness can lead to some sentences failing to have a clear truth value. The homogeneity property of plural predication with definite descriptions may also create truth-value gaps: The books are written in Dutch is true if all relevant books are in Dutch, false if none of them are, and neither true nor false if, say, half of the books are written in Dutch. We study the projection property of homogeneity by deploying methods of general interest to identify (...) truth-value gaps. Method A consists in collecting both truth judgments and, independently, falsity judgments. The second method, employed in experiment series B and C, is based on one-shot ternary judgments: completely true vs. completely false vs. neither. After a calibration of these methods, we use them to demonstrate that homogeneity projects out of negation, the scope of universal sentences and the scope of non-monotonic quantifiers such as exactly two, to some extent. We assess our results in light of different theoretical approaches to homogeneity—approaches based on presuppositions, scalar implicatures, and something like supervaluations, respectively. We identify free parameters in these theories and assess various variants of them based on our results. Our experimental paradigms may be of broader significance insofar as they can be applied to other phenomena which result in the failure of a sentence to have a definite truth value. (shrink)
The rise of foundational dualism and the eclipse of the body -- "Body am I entirely, and nothing else": non-reductive materialism and the struggle against dualism -- Toward a materialist phenomenology of religion -- The phenomenology of embodiment and the study of religion -- Religious bodies as social artifacts -- Holding social constructionism in check: the recovery of the active, lived body -- A cultural neurophenomenology of religion: enter the embodied mind -- The eclipse of practice: textualism at large -- (...) "Ceci n'est pas un texte": from textualism to practice -- Expanding the conversation on emplaced religion -- Mobility, networks, and ecology. (shrink)