Although death by neurologic criteria is legally recognized throughout the United States, state laws and clinical practice vary concerning three key issues: the medical standards used to determine death by neurologic criteria, management of family objections before determination of death by neurologic criteria, and management of religious objections to declaration of death by neurologic criteria. The American Academy of Neurology and other medical stakeholder organizations involved in the determination of death by neurologic criteria have undertaken concerted action to address variation (...) in clinical practice in order to ensure the integrity of brain death determination. To complement this effort, state policymakers must revise legislation on the use of neurologic criteria to declare death. We review the legal history and current laws regarding neurologic criteria to declare death and offer proposed revisions to the Uniform Determination of Death Act and the rationale for these recommendations. (shrink)
In this book, Matthew P. Meyer analyzes the archer and the bow as a metaphor for the human condition in Lacan, Nietzsche, and Greek literature. The bow is a model of the tension at the heart of the human condition, while the archer is a symbol of control.
Chapter 1 reconstructs Gadamer's fundamental philosophical task. The task is the problem of certainty, which is the problem of responding in some way or another to reasons that seem to show that we need, but cannot complete, the justificationalist project. Justificationalism is the view that we need a special philosophical of all human knowledge all at once. Chapter 2 argues that Hegel and Heidegger both try to solve the problem of certainty by transforming the realist conception of truth on which (...) it depends. Chapters 3 and 4 argue that Gadamer provides the resources for a different response. By exploiting similarities between Gadamer's account of understanding and externalism in analytic epistemology, I argue that there is a possible position, hermeneutic externalism, which is based on Gadamer's concept of authority. Chapter 5 tries to show how hermeneutic externalism finally provides an answer to the problem of certainty. The conclusion that I would like to draw from the whole of this work is that Gadamer is a realist and an externalist, in the sense that those views represent what he should think. He should embrace externalism and realism because they best represent his genuine insights and they best address the philosophical task as he conceives it. (shrink)
In July 2012, the Kazimierz Naturalist workshop gathered in Kazimierz-Dolny, Poland to discuss the topic Naturalizing Religion. A group of 16 presenters with backgrounds in philosophy, cognitive science, psychology, and religious studies gave presentations with a general focus on the burgeoning field of the cognitive science of religion . This included keynotes from Robert McCauley, Jesper Sørensen, Helen de Cruz, and John Wilkins . The current special issue contains three of the papers presented during the 4-day-long conference. They represent the (...) scope and variety of the presentations, addressing both theoretical and empirical issues in the discussions of the new science of religion. The first paper, ‘Reduction, Explanation, and the New Science of Religion,’ by Christopher Pearson and Matthew P. Schunke, is a theoretical exploration of the term reduction and the ways in which it is applied to the scientific study of religion. Pearson and Schunk .. (shrink)
J.L. Austin described speech acts as utterances which are themselves actions, and not simply descriptions of actions or states of affairs. It is suggested that emotions are also actions, and not simply results of actions. Emotions may be conceived as attunements in the phenomenological tradition, as means of experiencing the world. Understood as attunements, emotions are actions in the sense that they do not simply result from appraisal processes or social constraints, but are themselves our engagements with the world. Three (...) insights into the nature of emotion achieved through the comparison of speech acts and emotions are discussed: emotions may best be studied as acts, and not as elements such as cognitive appraisals, characteristic feeling states, or states of physiological arousal which often accompany emotions; the study of emotions as acts may best be viewed as an exercise in uncovering rather than discovering knowledge; and emotions are commitments to world views and, as such, are susceptible to moral evaluation. (shrink)
Background Since 2010 the People’s Republic of China has been engaged in an effort to reform its system of organ transplantation by developing a voluntary organ donation and allocation infrastructure. This has required a shift in the procurement of organs sourced from China’s prison and security apparatus to hospital-based voluntary donors declared dead by neurological and/or circulatory criteria. Chinese officials announced that from January 1, 2015, hospital-based donors would be the sole source of organs. This paper examines the availability, transparency, (...) integrity, and consistency of China’s official transplant data. Methods Forensic statistical methods were used to examine key deceased organ donation datasets from 2010 to 2018. Two central-level datasets — published by the China Organ Transplant Response System and the Red Cross Society of China — are tested for evidence of manipulation, including conformance to simple mathematical formulae, arbitrary internal ratios, the presence of anomalous data artefacts, and cross-consistency. Provincial-level data in five regions are tested for coherence, consistency, and plausibility, and individual hospital data in those provinces are examined for consistency with provincial-level data. Results COTRS data conforms almost precisely to a mathematical formula while Central Red Cross data mirrors it, albeit imperfectly. The analysis of both datasets suggests human-directed data manufacture and manipulation. Contradictory, implausible, or anomalous data artefacts were found in five provincial datasets, suggesting that these data may have been manipulated to enforce conformity with central quotas. A number of the distinctive features of China’s current organ procurement and allocation system are discussed, including apparent misclassification of nonvoluntary donors as voluntary. Conclusion A variety of evidence points to what the authors believe can only be plausibly explained by systematic falsification and manipulation of official organ transplant datasets in China. Some apparently nonvoluntary donors also appear to be misclassified as voluntary. This takes place alongside genuine voluntary organ transplant activity, which is often incentivized by large cash payments. These findings are relevant for international interactions with China’s organ transplantation system. (shrink)
This article argues that integrating philosophy courses and the first-year experience can address the problem of attracting students to the philosophy major and make philosophical material more accessible and engaging. Through a reflection on teaching a first-year honors seminar on the topic of meaning in life, I show how we can use the philosophical tradition to help students with the transition into the university environment and, in the process, give them a sense of the value of philosophy as a tool (...) to think through and evaluate their current experiences. The article demonstrates the value of philosophy to first-year students and shows how philosophy faculty and departments are well-suited to contribute to first-year programming at their institutions. Furthermore, it shows how addressing these issues can help departments recruit students into their major and minors while also sparking a genuine interest in philosophical inquiry. (shrink)
Linguistics falls in the gap between arts and science, on the edges of which the most fascinating discoveries and the most important problems are found. Rather than following the conventional organization of many contemporary introductions to the subject, the author of this stimulating guide begins his discussion with the oldest, 'arts' end of the subject and moves chronologically through to the newest research - the 'science' aspects. A series of short thematic chapters look in turn at such areas as the (...) prehistory of languages and their common origins, language and evolution, language in time and space, grammars and dictionaries, and phonetics. Explication of the newest discoveries pertaining to language in the brain completes the coverage of all major aspects of linguistics from a refreshing and insightful angle. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable. (shrink)
In the Critique of Judgment, Kant argues that feeling is part of the system of the mind. Judgments of taste based on feeling are a unique kind of judgment, and the feeling that is their foundation forms an independent third power of the mind. Feeling has a special role within this system in that it also provides a transition between the other two powers of the mind, cognition and desire. Matthews argues that feeling, our experience of beauty, provides a transition (...) because it orients humans in a sensible world. Judgments of taste help overcome the difficulties that arise when rational cognitive and moral ends must be pursued in a sensible world. Matthews demonstrates how feeling, disassociated from rational activities in Kant's earlier works, is now central in reaching rational ends and understanding humans as unified rational beings. Audience: This book would be of interest to research libraries and university libraries, philosophers, historians and aestheticians. (shrink)
One interpretation of the conditional If P then Q is as saying that the probability of Q given P is high. This is an interpretation suggested by Adams (1966) and pursued more recently by Edgington (1995). Of course, this probabilistic conditional is nonmonotonic, that is, if the probability of Q given P is high, and R implies P, it need not follow that the probability of Q given R is high. If we were confident of concluding Q from the fact (...) that we knew P, and we have stronger information R, we can no longer be confident of Q. We show nonetheless that usually we would still be justified in concluding Q from R. In other words, probabilistic conditionals are mostly monotonic. (shrink)
Jurors customarily do their work with very little by way of instruction from the court, other than about the law. This suggests that they enter the jury room with the relevant cognitive and interactional tools at the ready, drawn from everyday life. This paper focuses on a specific conversational device jurors use to do their work: conditional-contrastive inculpations, whereby the defendant’s actions are compared unfavorably to what a normal, innocent person would have done, with the implication that the discrepancy indicates (...) guilt. We examine the logic, variants, sequential precursors, and immediate consequences of this phenomenon in two real-life American criminal juries deliberating the same charges. This study offers a rare glimpse into the operation of real juries, and specifically the way in which they appropriate a practice from ordinary conversation in order to perform the unordinary work demanded of them by the legal system. (shrink)
Research in the neurosciences continues to provide evidence that sleep plays a role in the processes of learning and memory. There is less of a consensus, however, regarding the precise stages of memory development during which sleep is considered a requirement, simply favorable, or not important. This article begins with an overview of recent studies regarding sleep and learning, predominantly in the procedural memory domain, and is measured against our current understanding of the mechanisms that govern memory formation. Based on (...) these considerations, I offer a new neurocognitive framework of procedural learning, consisting first of acquisition, followed by two specific stages of consolidation, one involving a process of stabilization, the other involving enhancement, whereby delayed learning occurs. Psychophysiological evidence indicates that initial acquisition does not rely fundamentally on sleep. This also appears to be true for the stabilization phase of consolidation, with durable representations, resistant to interference, clearly developing in a successful manner during time awake (or just time, per se). In contrast, the consolidation stage, resulting in additional/enhanced learning in the absence of further rehearsal, does appear to rely on the process of sleep, with evidence for specific sleep-stage dependencies across the procedural domain. Evaluations at a molecular, cellular, and systems level currently offer several sleep specific candidates that could play a role in sleep-dependent learning. These include the upregulation of select plasticity-associated genes, increased protein synthesis, changes in neurotransmitter concentration, and specific electrical events in neuronal networks that modulate synaptic potentiation. Key Words: consolidation; enhancement; learning; memory; plasticity; sleep; stabilization. (shrink)
Following on from the target article, which presented a new model of procedural skill memory development, in this response I will reflect on issues raised by invited commentators and further expound attributes of the model. Discussion will focus on: evidence against sleep-dependent memory processing, definitions of memory stages and memory systems, and relationships between memory enhancement, sleep-stages, dreaming, circadian time, and sleep-disorders.
Rising income inequality was a major factor in the surge of household debt that brought on the financial crash and Great Recession. Other studies have identified rising household debt as a cause of the crash but not income inequality as a cause of the rising debt. Here the unusual rise in household debt post 1995 is documented. Econometric evidence links rising income inequality to the rise of household debt. Consumer expenditure data shows that prices of major necessities —shelter, healthcare and (...) education—rose faster than inflation as demand by high-income households surged. In order to maintain their consumption of such necessities, lower-income households resorted to massive borrowing. Their rising debt precipitated the financial crash and Great Recession. That link was overlooked by mainstream economists because they adhere to a theory of household consumption that posits no role for income inequality. (shrink)