By way of an analysis of Arendt's defense of the public/private distinction in The Human Condition, this essay offers a re-interpretation of the status of the family as a realm where the categories of action and speech play a vital role. The traditional criterion for the establishment of the public/private distinction is grounded in an idealization of the family as a sphere where a unity of interests destroys the conditions for the categories of action and speech. This essay takes issue (...) with this assumption and argues that the traditional conception has had a pernicious effect not only on women, but on men as well. This argument is supported by locating a fissure in Arendt's analysis of this distinction that suggests a profound structural affinity between the public realm and the family. Key Words: Arendt family feminism public/private. (shrink)
The Holocaust throws the study of the history of philosophy into crisis. Critiques of Western thinking leveled by such thinkers as Adorno, Levinas and, more recently, postmodern theorists have suggested that Western philosophy is inherently totalizing and that it must be read differently or altogether abandoned after Auschwitz. This article intentionally rereads Aristotle and Hegel through the shattered lens of the Holocaust. Its refracted focus is the question of ontological identity. By investigating the manner in which the totalizing dimensions of (...) Aristotle’s thinking are both eclipsed and implicitly endorsed by Hegel’s appropriation of Aristotle’s conception of God, and further by following the surplus of Hegel’s (mis)interpretation back into the heart of Aristotle’s ontology where we find a more open conception of ontological identity, we come to recognize not only the dangers endemic to certain strands of traditional philosophical thinking, but also the resources this tradition itself brings to bear on the attempt to think ontological identity after Auschwitz. (shrink)
Book reviewed in this article: Long Term Care: Principles, Programs and Policies. By Rosalie A. Kane and Robert L. Kane. Long Term Health Care: providing a Spectrum of Services to the Aged. By Philip W. Brickner, Anthony J. Lechich, Roberta Lipsman, and Linda K. scharer.
Book reviewed in this article: Long Term Care: Principles, Programs and Policies. By Rosalie A. Kane and Robert L. Kane. Long Term Health Care: providing a Spectrum of Services to the Aged. By Philip W. Brickner, Anthony J. Lechich, Roberta Lipsman, and Linda K. scharer.
Au cours des années 1770, ayant trouvé sa vocation de réformateur du droit et guidé par le principe du plus grand bonheur du plus grand nombre, Jeremy Bentham rassemble ses idées dans de volumineux manuscrits qu’il classe sous le titre de « principes préparatoires ». La publication récente de ces feuillets par Douglas Long et Philip Schofield entr’ouvre la porte de l’atelier du philosophe au tout début de sa carrière. Car la décennie 1770 est particulièrement féconde pour Bentham. (...) C’est pend... (shrink)
Academic cheating has become a pervasive practice from primary schools to university. This study aims at investigating this phenomenon through a nomological network which integrates different theoretical frameworks and models, such as trait and social-cognitive theories and models regarding the approaches to learning and contextual/normative environment. Results on a sample of more than 200 Italian university students show that the Amoral Manipulation facet of Machiavellianism, Academic Moral Disengagement, Deep Approach to Learning and Normative Academic Cheating are significantly associated with Individual (...) Academic Cheating. Moreover, results show a significant latent interaction effect between Normative Academic Cheating and Amoral Manipulation Machiavellianism: "amoral Machiavellians" students are more prone to resort to Academic Cheating in contexts where Academic Cheating is adopted as a practice by their peers, while this effect is not significant in contexts where Academic Cheating is not normative. Results also show that Academic Moral Disengagement and Deep Approach to learning partially mediate the relationship between Amoral Manipulation and Academic Cheating. Practical implications of these results are discussed. (shrink)
The current COVID-19 pandemic and the previous SARS/MERS outbreaks of 2003 and 2012 have resulted in a series of major global public health crises. We argue that in the interest of developing effective and safe vaccines and drugs and to better understand coronaviruses and associated disease mechenisms it is necessary to integrate the large and exponentially growing body of heterogeneous coronavirus data. Ontologies play an important role in standard-based knowledge and data representation, integration, sharing, and analysis. Accordingly, we initiated the (...) development of the community-based Coronavirus Infectious Disease Ontology in early 2020. -/- As an Open Biomedical Ontology (OBO) library ontology, CIDO is open source and interoperable with other existing OBO ontologies. CIDO is aligned with the Basic Formal Ontology and Viral Infectious Disease Ontology. CIDO has imported terms from over 30 OBO ontologies. For example, CIDO imports all SARS-CoV-2 protein terms from the Protein Ontology, COVID-19-related phenotype terms from the Human Phenotype Ontology, and over 100 COVID-19 terms for vaccines (both authorized and in clinical trial) from the Vaccine Ontology. CIDO systematically represents variants of SARS-CoV-2 viruses and over 300 amino acid substitutions therein, along with over 300 diagnostic kits and methods. CIDO also describes hundreds of host-coronavirus protein-protein interactions (PPIs) and the drugs that target proteins in these PPIs. CIDO has been used to model COVID-19 related phenomena in areas such as epidemiology. The scope of CIDO was evaluated by visual analysis supported by a summarization network method. CIDO has been used in various applications such as term standardization, inference, natural language processing (NLP) and clinical data integration. We have applied the amino acid variant knowledge present in CIDO to analyze differences between SARS-CoV-2 Delta and Omicron variants. CIDO's integrative host-coronavirus PPIs and drug-target knowledge has also been used to support drug repurposing for COVID-19 treatment. -/- CIDO represents entities and relations in the domain of coronavirus diseases with a special focus on COVID-19. It supports shared knowledge representation, data and metadata standardization and integration, and has been used in a range of applications. (shrink)
Philip Kitcher is a leading figure in the philosophy of science, and he is part of a growing community of scholars who have turned their attention from the field’s long-time focus on questions of logic and epistemology to the relation between science and society. Kitcher’s book Science, Truth, and Democracy (2001) charted a course between relativism and realism, arguing that the aims of science emerge from not only scientific curiosity but also practical and public concerns. The book also (...) drew on John Rawls’s A Theory of Justice (1999) to develop an ideal of “well-ordered science,” and then applied the ideal to various aspects of the scientific research agenda. Ten years later, complex public issues like climate change have grown more urgent, and with many people questioning mainstream science on climate change, evolutionary biology, vaccines, stem cell research, and other topics, the tensions between science and democracy seem more pronounced than ever. Kitcher’s Science in a Democrat. (shrink)
Philip Kitcher is one of the leading figures in the philosophy of science today. Here he collects, for the first time, many of his published articles on the philosophy of biology, spanning from the mid-1980's to the present. The book's title refers to Gregor Mendel, an Augustinian monk who was one of the first scientists to develop a theory of heredity. Mendel's work has been deeply influential to our understanding of our selves and our world, just as the study (...) of genetics today will have a profound and long-term impact on future scientific research. Kitcher's articles cover a broad range of topics with similar philosophical and social significance: sociobiology, evolutionary psychology, species, race, altruism, genetic determinism, and the rebirth of creationism in Intelligent Design. Kitcher's work on the intersection of biology and the philosophy of science is both unprecedented and wide-ranging, and will appeal not only to philosophers of science, but to scholars and students across disciplines. (shrink)
Instead of conceiving ethical commands as divine revelations or as the discoveries of brilliant thinkers, we should see our ethical practices as evolving over tens of thousands of years, as members of our species have worked out how to live together and prosper. Here, Kitcher elaborates his radical vision of this millennia-long ethical project.
Philosophers have long agreed that moral responsibility might not only have a freedom condition, but also an epistemic condition. Moral responsibility and knowledge interact, but the question is exactly how. Ignorance might constitute an excuse, but the question is exactly when. Surprisingly enough, the epistemic condition has only recently attracted the attention of scholars, and it is high time for a full volume on the topic. The chapters in this volume address the following central questions. Does the epistemic condition (...) require akrasia? Why does blameless ignorance excuse? Does moral ignorance sustained by one’s culture excuse? Does the epistemic condition involve knowledge of the wrongness or wrongmaking features of one’s action? Is the epistemic condition an independent condition, or is it derivative from one’s quality of will or intentions? Is the epistemic condition sensitive to degrees of difficulty? Are there different kinds of moral responsibility and thus multiple epistemic conditions? Is the epistemic condition revisionary? What is the basic structure of the epistemic condition? (shrink)
Philip Appleman sagely and eloquently addresses such questions as where we came from, whether there is a God, and if there is, why there is so much evil and turmoil in the world. Putting this in the illuminating context of our evolutionary development and cultural history, he also ponders the notion of an afterlife and what role it has in determining our behaviour while we are alive. Twenty-first-century thinkers, reflecting on the long and horrendous history of religious wars (...) and atrocities, are no longer willing to pay the traditional deference to religious authority, preferring instead to seek inside their own lives, thoughts and actions for the answers to life's greatest questions. Appleman concludes that a life well lived, short as it is in the eons of our planet's existence, is its own reward. (shrink)
Within the strategy that we call avant-garde there are two sets of tactics, one immediate, the other long term. One set could be called a tactics of short-term attention, and it is this set that has been most often noticed. Shock, surprise, self-promotion, the baiting of middle-class solemnity, outrage, a subversive playfulness, a deliberate frustration of habitual expectations, an apparent difficult or refusal of communication, a banality where profundity and seriousness were earlier the norm: these are a few of (...) the tactics that again and again appeared as part of the competitive marketplace strategy for advertising the new.To be a notorious artist was always halfway to becoming a famous one, and many were willing to take the chance that once conditions were right the slight move from notoriety to fame could be accomplished. These tactics made it clear that the problem for an artist within the modern period was first of all to stand out within a crowd, within a surplus of candidates for the few places available nationally or internationally. The rivalry for initial attention under modern conditions set every artist the question of how his own work might have clear identity and felt importance. This was, in an age of products and advertising, the problem of how to turn a style into a brand. Philip Fisher is professor of English at Harvard University and the author of Hard Facts . The essay published here forms part of his forthcoming book Making and Effacing Art. He is currently at work on a book on the philosophical and literary history of the Passions. (shrink)
Panentheism is best understood as a philosophical research program. Identifying the core of the research program offers a strong response to the demarcation objection. It also helps focus both objections to and defenses of panentheism — and to show why common objections are not actually criticisms of the position we are defending. The paper also addresses two common criticisms: the alleged inadequacy of panentheism’s double “in” specification of the relationship between God and world, and the “double God” objection. Once the (...) research program framework is in place, topics like these become opportunities for panentheists to engage in the kind of careful constructive work in theology and philosophy — historical, analytic, and systematic — that is required for making long-term, positive contributions to our field. (shrink)
How have sociologists responded to the emergence of environmentalism? What has sociology to offer the study of environmental problems? This uniquely comprehensive guide traces the origins and development of environmental movements and environmental issues, providing a critical review of the most significant debates in the new field of environmental sociology. It covers environmental ideas, environmental movements, social constructionism, critical realism, "ecocentric" theory, environmental identities, risk society theory, sustainable development, Green consumerism, ecological modernization and debates around modernity and post- modernity. (...) class='Hi'>Philip Sutton adopts a long-term view, which focuses on the relationship between ideas of nature and environment, ecological identities and social change, providing a framework for future research. Bringing environmental issues into contact with sociological theories, Nature, Environment and Society provides an up-to-date introduction to this important new field. It will be essential reading for all students of sociology, environmental studies and anyone interested in understanding environmental problems. (shrink)
The long republican tradition is characterized by a conception of freedom as non‐domination, which offers an alternative, both to the negative view of freedom as non‐interference and to the positive view of freedom as self‐mastery. The first part of the book traces the rise and decline of the conception, displays its many attractions and makes a case for why it should still be regarded as a central political ideal. The second part of the book looks at the sorts of (...) political and civil institutions that would be required in a society in which freedom as non‐domination is systematically fostered. It outlines the causes and policies, the constitutional and democratic forms, and the regulatory controls that a republican state ought to endorse. And it argues for a vision of the state's relation to civil society in which there is no pretence of doing without widespread civility and trust; the argument is that the state ought, at once, to foster and build on such extra‐political foundations. (shrink)
The twentieth century began with the deconstruction of the image, as it is ending with the effort to restore it. Cubism, dada, and abstract expressionism took apart what, in their various ways, pop art, magic realism, and neoexpressionism have tried to put back together. Tonality in music and narrative in literature have undergone similar change.1 What has been at stake in each case has been the redefinition of a center, a normative or ordering principle as such. Yeats intuited this general (...) phenomenon in his famous observation that “the center cannot hold,” and though whether one applauds or, with Yeats, condemns the result, it is undeniable that the crisis of contemporary culture has been in large part experienced as a deprivation of norms.This sense of deprivation has been most apparent in the plastic arts. The fashioning of images has been one of the primary impulses of human art. It has been the basis of most systems of visual representation and constitutes the earliest record we have off art itself. Its loss or abandonment has been in good part responsible for the bewilderment and hostility much of the general public continues to express toward modern art.The experience of this loss, however, has not been confined to the public alone. For many artists, the sense of modern art’s expressive potential has been tempered by an anxiety about its ultimate direction.2 For these artists, the image had not been transcended but rather rendered inaccessible, and implicitly or explicitly they sought its restoration. At the same time, they were keenly aware that there could be no return to exhausted modes of representation, no looking back except as parody or quotation.3 1. Among the studies comparing changes across the arts in the early twentieth century are Georges Edouard Lemaître, From Cubism to Surrealism in French Literature , and Bram Dijkstra, The Hieroglyphics of a New Speech: Cubism, Stieglitz, and the Early Poetry of William Carlos Williams . More recently, visualization in cubist art and relativity theory has been compared in Linda Dalrymple Henderson, The Fourth Dimension and Non-Euclidean Geometry in Modern Art . For a general overview, see Stephen Kern, The Culture of Time and Space, 1880-1918 . Marxist critics, notably Walter Benjamin, have long insisted on the relationship between modernism in the arts and the crisis of the traditional order.2. This is clearly visible in the work and writing of pioneers such as Kandinsky and Klee or, to take a later case, Adolph Gottlieb. The correspondence between Kandinsky and Schönberg is illuminating as well.3. Much of the neoimagistic art of the past twenty-five years falls into these categories, and thus signals a prolongation rather than a resolution of the crisis. Pop art was clearly an art of parody, while work of an artist such as Malcolm Morley might almost be taken as an illustration of Benjamin’s thesis about the work of art in an age of mechanical reproduction. His “imitations,” like those of Robert Lowell in verse, betray a deep anxiety about mastery and tradition. Much the same can be said for such musical compositions as Lukas Foss’ “Baroque Variations” and “Phorion” or Luciano Berio’s “Sinfonia,” to name but a random few among many. Robert Zaller is professor of history and head of the department of history and politics at Drexel University. He was formerly on the faculties of Queens College , the University of California at Santa Barbara, and the University of Miami. His books include The Parliament of 1621: A Study in Constitutional Conflict and The Cliffs of Solitude: A Reading of Robinson Jeffers. (shrink)
Drawing upon original manuscripts and The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham, this collection represents the latest scholarship on Bentham's late and mature thought on constitutional law. The contributions cover a diverse range of major topics, from official aptitude or competency to the interests of women, and explore Bentham's writings on courts, codification, and cosmopolitanism. Together, its chapters challenge the received notion, based on early jurisprudential writings, that Bentham's constitutional thought is authoritarian, and show that Bentham, as a constitutional theorist, offers (...) a distinctive liberal perspective. Freeing Bentham's theories from their long sentences and unfamiliar terminology, these essays make accessible Bentham's subtle and important ideas on liberal democracy. By shining a light on Bentham's mature thought, this volume offers a refreshingly comprehensive, detailed, and authentic account of Bentham's theory of democracy. (shrink)
Ultimately we will only understand biological agency when we have developed a theory of the organization of biological processes, and science is still a long way from attaining that goal. It may be possible nonetheless to develop a list of necessary conditions for the emergence of minimal biological agency. The authors offer a model of molecular autonomous agents which meets the five minimal physical conditions that are necessary (and, we believe, conjointly sufficient) for applying agential language in biology: autocatalytic (...) reproduction; work cycles; boundaries for reproducing individuals; self-propagating work and constraint construction; and choice and action that have evolved to respond to food or poison. When combined with the arguments from preadaptation and multiple realizability, the existence of these agents is sufficient to establish ontological emergence as against what one might call Weinbergian reductionism. Minimal biological agents are emphatically not conscious agents, and accepting their existence does not commit one to any robust theory of human agency. Nor is there anything mystical, dualistic, or non-empirical about the emergence of agency in the biosphere. Hence the emergence of molecular autonomous agents, and indeed ontological emergence in general, is not a negation of or limitation on careful biological study but simply one of its implications. (shrink)
W.V.O.Quine’s doctrine of referential inscrutability (RI) is the thesis that, first, linguistic reference must always be determined relative to an interpretation of the discourse and, second, that the empirical evidence always underdetermines our choice of interpretation--at least in principle. Although this thesis is a central result of Quine’s theory of language, it was long unclear just how much force RI actually carried. At best, Quine’s discussions provided localized examples of RI (e.g., ‘gavagai’), supplemented merely by arguments for the (in (...) principle) constructability of more general referentially divergent manuals. In defense of Quine, Gerald Massey provides a method for generating large-scale referentially divergent manuals for a complex language. I argue that, while Massey’s rival manuals do meet Quine’s translational criteria, they are demonstrably inferior to their commonsensical “homophonic” competitor. This result provides a clear indication of seminal deficiencies in Quine’s behaviorial approach to the theory of language. Next I argue that Quine’s acceptance of standard assumptions about the nature of perception strongly influences the shape of his semantical theory. Finally, I suggest how an alternative to the standard account of perception might provide grounds for a more adequate understanding of language. (shrink)
In response to the dozen essays published here, which relate my 1964 paper on “The Nature of Belief Systems in the Mass Publics” to normative requirements of democratic theory, I note, inter alia, a major misinterpretation of my old argument, as well as needed revisions of that argument in the light of intervening data. Then I address the degree to which there may be some long‐term secular change in the parameters that I originally laid out. In the final section, (...) I provide a case study of public understanding of factual trends in federal tax policy in recent decades which seems commendably veridical on average. The preferences of the public thereon add up to a remarkably clear popular mandate. But this mandate seems to disappear rather magically in the voting booth, probably due to a combination of limited contextual information on the public side, and considerable skill on the elite side in manipulating apparent political realities. (shrink)
History and Philosophy of Modern Mathematics was first published in 1988. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions. The fourteen essays in this volume build on the pioneering effort of Garrett Birkhoff, professor of mathematics at Harvard University, who in 1974 organized a conference of mathematicians and historians of modern mathematics to examine how the two disciplines approach the history of mathematics. (...) In History and Philosophy of Modern Mathematics, William Aspray and Philip Kitcher bring together distinguished scholars from mathematics, history, and philosophy to assess the current state of the field. Their essays, which grow out of a 1985 conference at the University of Minnesota, develop the basic premise that mathematical thought needs to be studied from an interdisciplinary perspective. The opening essays study issues arising within logic and the foundations of mathematics, a traditional area of interest to historians and philosophers. The second section examines issues in the history of mathematics within the framework of established historical periods and questions. Next come case studies that illustrate the power of an interdisciplinary approach to the study of mathematics. The collection closes with a look at mathematics from a sociohistorical perspective, including the way institutions affect what constitutes mathematical knowledge. (shrink)
Philip McShane explores the implications of Bernard Lonergan’s compacted account of ‘what questions’ and ‘what-to-do questions’ for understanding deliberation. The essay provides a fascinating and instructive glimpse into McShane’s own long-continued struggle and dialogue with Lonergan’s achievement.
The food regime concept is a key to unlock not only structured moments and transitions in the history of capitalist food relations, but also the history of capitalism itself. It is not about food per se, but about the relations within which food is produced, and through which capitalism is produced and reproduced. It provides, then, a fruitful perspective on the so-called ‘world food crisis’ of 2007–2008. This paper argues that the crisis stems from a long-term cycle of fossil-fuel (...) dependence of industrial capitalism, combined with the inflation-producing effects of current biofuel offsets and financial speculation, and the concentration and centralization of agribusiness capital stemming from the enabling conjunctural policies of the corporate food regime. Rising costs, related to peak oil and fuel crop substitutes, combine with monopoly pricing by agribusiness to inflate food prices, globally transmitted under the liberalized terms of finance and trade associated with neoliberal policies. (shrink)
Gary Ostertag has presented a new puzzle for Russellianism about belief reports. He argues that Russellians do not have the resources to solve this puzzle in terms of pragmatic phenomena. I argue to the contrary that the puzzle can be solved according to Nathan Salmon’s pragmatic account of belief reports, provided that the account is properly understood. Specifically, the puzzle can be solved so long as Salmon’s guises are not identified with sentences.
As an alternative to establishing awareness thresholds, stimulus contexts in which there were either greater conscious or greater unconscious influences were defined on the basis of performance on an exclusion task. Target words were presented for brief durations and each target word was followed immediately by its three-letter stem. Subjects were instructed to complete each stem with any word other than the target word. With this task, failures to exclude target words indicate greater unconscious influences, whereas successful exclusion indicates greater (...) conscious influences. Conscious influences were dominant at long durations , but unconscious influences were dominant at short durations . Performance on the exclusion task successfully predicated both qualitative differences in Stroop priming and qualitative differences in recognition memory previously associated with the different effects of conscious and unconscious influences. Taken together, these results demonstrate that an exclusion task allows both unconscious and conscious influences to be defined in terms of significant deviations from baseline performance. As such, exclusion tasks provide a method for distinguishing conscious from unconscious influences that does not require establishing thresholds for null awareness. (shrink)
Our long experience with Newtonian potentials has inured us to the view that gravity only produces local effects. In this paper we challenge this quite deeply ingrained notion and explicitly identify some intrinsically global gravitational effects. In particular we show that the global cosmological Hubble flow can actually modify the motions of stars and gas within individual galaxies, and even do so in a way which can apparently eliminate the need for galactic dark matter. Also we show that a (...) classical light wave acquires an observable, global, pathdependent phase in traversing a gravitational field. Both of these effects serve to underscore the intrinsic difference between nonrelativistic and relativistic gravity. (shrink)
Husserlian phenomenology, as the study of conscious experience, has often been accused of solipsism. Husserl’s method, it is argued, does not have the resources to provide an account of consciousness of other minds. This chapter will address this issue by providing a brief overview of the multiple angles from which Husserl approached the theme of intersubjectivity, with specific focus on the details of his account of the concrete interpersonal encounter – “empathy.” Husserl understood empathy as a direct, quasi-perceptual form of (...) intentionality through which the sense of the Other is constituted. Furthermore, his account of empathy is holistically integrated with his overall theory of intersubjectivity, including his discussions of the objectivity of nature, and the social, historical, and communal aspects of subjectivity. Husserl’s theory of empathy continues to cast a long shadow, influencing both the analytic and continental approaches to the problem of other minds, as well as contemporary account of social cognition in the cognitive sciences. (shrink)
In A Theory of Moral Education, Michael Hand homes in on a central problem of moral education and offers us a solution. Briefly put, the problem is this: There is often widespread disagreement about moral matters, even among those who have thought long and hard about them. So how is moral education possible without resorting to indoctrination? We are all aware of familiar strategies to avoid this problem, such as introducing various moral systems and conflicting beliefs without taking a (...) stand on them, encouraging students to reach their own conclusions about moral matters, or even keeping well clear of the whole subject in the first place. Unfortunately, these options are not available to anyone who sees the need for moral education and takes it that bringing about rational assent to moral standards is among its aims. Given this starting point, the fact of reasonable disagreement makes it difficult to see how to avoid the problem of indoctrination. Hand’s solution is to argue that, while disagreement about moral matters is a salient feature of social life, there is a significant core of moral values about which there is actually little contention, and for which an adequate justification is within reach. Among them are “prohibitions on killing and causing harm, stealing and extorting, lying and cheating, and requirements to treat others fairly, keep one’s promises and help those in need”. With well-known caveats, there is at least general assent to these prescriptions, but their rational justification is more problematic. The history of ethical theory is littered with arguments as to why such things are wrong, but the arguments are contentious—and that looks to compound the problem. Nevertheless, Hand believes that there is at least one sound argument that can be used to justify our core moral standards. (shrink)
This is a long review of a long book, the longest to my knowledge on what educational aims and the curriculum that flows from them should be. The first half of the review is devoted to a brief summary of each of the eleven chapters. The second half raises some critical points. These cover remarks about R.S. Peters' alleged traditionalism; the salience of climate change considerations among educational aims; the claim that the arts, like the sciences, make progress; (...) seeing the elements of morality as a toolbox. The longest critical discussion is about Kitcher's notion of human fulfillment and whether he is right in his view that we should see it in terms of a successful life-plan aimed at furthering ‘the human project’. (shrink)
From the stony streets of Boston to the rail lines of California, from General Relativity to Google, one of the surest truths of our history is the fact that America has been built by immigrants. The phrase itself has become a steadfast campaign line, a motto of optimism and good will, and indeed it is the rallying cry for progressives today who fight against tightening our borders. This is all well and good, Philip Cafaro thinks, for the America of (...) the past—teeming with resources, opportunities, and wide open spaces—but America isn’t as young as it used to be, and the fact of the matter is we can’t afford to take in millions of people anymore. We’ve all heard this argument before, and one might think Cafaro is toeing the conservative line, but here’s the thing: he’s not conservative, not by a long shot. He’s as progressive as they come, and it’s progressives at whom he aims with this book’s startling message: massive immigration simply isn’t consistent with progressive ideals. Cafaro roots his argument in human rights, equality, economic security, and environmental sustainability—hallmark progressive values. He shows us the undeniable realities of mass migration to which we have turned a blind eye: how flooded labor markets in sectors such as meatpacking and construction have driven down workers’ wages and driven up inequality; how excessive immigration has fostered unsafe working conditions and political disempowerment; how it has stalled our economic maturity by keeping us ever-focused on increasing consumption and growth; and how it has caused our cities and suburbs to sprawl far and wide, destroying natural habitats, driving other species from the landscape, and cutting us off from nature. In response to these hard-hitting truths, Cafaro lays out a comprehensive plan for immigration reform that is squarely in line with progressive political goals. He suggests that we shift enforcement efforts away from border control and toward the employers who knowingly hire illegal workers. He proposes aid and foreign policies that will help people create better lives where they are. And indeed he supports amnesty for those who have, at tremendous risk, already built their lives here. Above all, Cafaro attacks our obsession with endless material growth, offering in its place a mature vision of America, not brimming but balanced, where all the different people who constitute this great nation of immigrants can live sustainably and well, sheltered by a prudence currently in short supply in American politics. (shrink)
Militant modern atheism, whose most eloquent champion is Richard Dawkins, provides an effective and necessary critique of fundamentalist forms of religion and their role in political life, both within states and across national boundaries. Because it is also presented as a more general attack on religion (tout court), it has provoked a severe reaction from scholars who regard its conception of religion as shallow and narrow. My aim is to examine this debate, identifying insights and oversights on both sides.Two distinct (...) conceptions of religion are in play. For Dawkins and his allies (most notably Dan Dennett) religions are grounded in doctrines, propositions about supernatural entities, events and processes which the devout believe. Their beliefs prompt them to actions, which they support or rationalize by reference to the doctrines. Dawkins and Dennett view the acceptance of the doctrines as resting on cognitive misfiring — these are delusions to be outgrown or spells to be broken.By contrast, the religious scholars who criticize the militant atheists often view religion as centered in social practices that inform and enrich human lives. To the extent that there are doctrines that atheists might subject to epistemic evaluation, these are to be viewed as pieces of scaffolding, that are, in principle, dispensable.I argue that militant modern atheism is incomplete (and likely counter-productive) so long as it fails to attend systematically to the roles religion fulfills in human lives. Yet it is important to achieve public clarity about the literal falsehood of the doctrines on which fundamentalists rely. The challenge is to develop a well-articulated and convincing version of secular humanism. Meeting that challenge is, I claim, one of the central problems of philosophy today. (shrink)
Patient and family demands for the initiation or continuation of life-sustaining medically non-beneficial treatments continues to be a major issue. This is especially relevant in intensive care units, but is also a challenge in other settings, most notably with cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Differences of opinion between physicians and patients/families about what are appropriate interventions in specific clinical situations are often fraught with highly strained emotions, and perhaps none more so when the family bases their desires on religious belief. In this essay, (...) I discuss non-beneficial treatments in light of these sorts of disputes, when there is a clash between the nominally secular world of fact- and evidence-based medicine and the faith-based world of hope for a miraculous cure. I ask the question whether religious belief can justify providing treatment that has either no or a vanishly small chance of restoring meaningful function. I conclude that non-beneficial therapy by its very definition cannot be helpful, and indeed is often harmful, to patients and hence cannot be justified no matter what the source or kind of reasons used to support its use. Therefore, doctors may legitimately refuse to provide such treatments, so long as they do so for acceptable clinical reasons. They must also offer alternatives, including second opinions, as well the option of transferring the care of the patient to a more accommodating physician or institution. (shrink)
A few years ago, Bas van Fraassen reminded philosophers of science that there are two central questions that a theory of explanation ought to answer. First, what is a explanation—when has something been explained satisfactorily? Second, why do we value explanations? . For a long time, discussions of explanation concentrated on technical problems connected with the first of these questions, and the second was by and large ignored. But, in fact, I think it is the second question which raises (...) the more fundamental and interesting philosophical issues. I shall offer reasons for thinking that the answer to the first question requires acceptance of the sort of fullblown notion of causation that only a scientific realist can love, and that the answer to the second question requires a realist construal of scientific theories and scientific methodology. My argument will be mainly negative, surveying the problems facing some major alternative accounts of explanation. A full elaboration of the realist perspective will have to await the completion of work in progress. (shrink)
Confucian Reflections: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Times is about the early Chinese Confucian classic the "Analects" Lunyu , attributed to the founder of the Confucian tradition, Kongzi and who is more commonly referred to as "Confucius" in the West. Philip J. Ivanhoe argues that the Analects is as relevant and important today as it has proven to be over the course of its more than 2000 year history, not only for the people who live in East Asian societies but (...) for all human beings. The fact that this text has inspired so many talented people for so long, across a range of complex, creative, rich, and fascinating cultures offers a strong prima facie reason for thinking that the insights the Analects contains are not bound by either the particular time or cultural context in which the text took shape. (shrink)
This volume presents the long-awaited edition of the Cave 4 manuscripts of Serekh Ha-Yahad or The Rule of the Community, in which the Essenes detailed the guidelines for membership in their community. Also known as the Manual of Discipline, a complete scroll was found in Cave 1 at Qumran and this edition illuminates the textual and redactional history of Dead Sea literature. The document is extremely important for understanding the nature, practice, and ideology of the Qumran covenanters.
The debate about physician-assisted suicide has long been entwined with the nature of the doctor–patient relationship. Opponents of physician-assisted suicide insist that the traditional goals of medicine do not and should not include intentionally bringing about or hastening a patient’s death, whereas proponents of physician-assisted suicide argue that this practice is an appropriate tool for doctors to relieve a patient’s suffering. In this article, I discuss these issues in light of the relevance of a Christian account of the doctor–patient (...) relationship. I argue that Christians typically object to assist suicide independently of the doctor–patient relationship. I argue that a focus on the Christian virtues of charity, compassion, and humility helps to explain why doctors should not assist their patients in suicide. (shrink)
Philosophical interest in introspection has a long and storied history, but only recently – with the 'scientific turn' in philosophy of mind – have philosophers sought to ground their accounts of introspection in psychological data. In particular, there is growing awareness of how evidence from clinical and developmental psychology might be brought to bear on long-standing debates about the architecture of introspection, especially in the form of apparent dissociations between introspection and third-person mental-state attribution. It is less often (...) noticed that this evidence needs to be interpreted with due sensitivity to distinctions between different types of introspection, for example, introspection of propositional attitudes vs. introspection of phenomenally conscious states. As contemporary debates about the machinery of introspection – and debates about mindreading in general – move forward, these distinctions are likely to figure more prominently. Author Recommends: Peter Carruthers, 'Simulation and Self-Knowledge: A Defense of Theory-Theory', in Theories of Theories of Mind, eds. P. Carruthers and P. K. Smith, 22–38. Defends a sophisticated form of the theory-theory of introspection, according to which we come to know at least some of our mental states by reasoning from an innate folk-psychological theory. Fred Dretske, 'Introspection', in Naturalizing the Mind, 39–63. Introduces and defends the idea of introspection as 'displaced perception'. Alvin Goldman, 'Self-Attribution', in Simulating Minds: The Philosophy, Psychology, and Neuroscience of Mindreading, 223–57. Defends a version of the 'inner sense' view of introspection in which mental state types are classified via their neural properties, and mental contents are classified via 'redeployment'. Alison Gopnik, 'How We Read Our Own Minds: The Illusion of First-Person Knowledge of Intentionality', Behavioral and Brain Sciences 16 : 1–14. A noted psychologist defends a version of the theory-theory of introspection, citing evidence of developmental symmetries between first-person and third-person mental-state attribution. Robert Gordon, 'Simulation without Introspection or Inference from Me to You', in Mental Simulation: Evaluations and Applications, eds. T. Stone and M. Davies, 53–67. Develops the idea of ascent routines – the rough analog of 'displaced perception' for the introspection of propositional attitudes. Uta Frith and Francesca Happé, 'Theory of Mind and Self-Consciousness: What Is It Like to Be Autistic?'Mind and Language 14 : 1–14. Appeals to evidence from autism to motivate the idea that first-person and third-person mental-state attribution have a common basis. Shaun Nichols and Stephen Stich, 'Reading One's Own Mind', in Mindreading: An Integrated Account of Pretence, Self-awareness, and Understanding other Minds, 150–99. Presents a comprehensive critique of leading theories of introspection, then introduces and defends the authors' preferred alternative, the 'monitoring mechanism' account. Jesse Prinz, 'The Fractionation of Introspection', Journal of Consciousness Studies 11 : 40–57. Develops the idea that introspection admits of several varieties. Philip Robbins, 'Knowing Me, Knowing You: Theory of Mind and the Machinery of Introspection', Journal of Consciousness Studies 11 : 129–43. Defends a hybrid view of introspection for propositional attitudes, according to which both theoretic inference and monitoring play a role. Sample Syllabus: Week 1: Theory-theory Alison Gopnik, 'How We Read Our Own Minds: The Illusion of First-Person Knowledge of Intentionality', Behavioral and Brain Sciences 16 : 1–14. Peter Carruthers, 'Simulation and Self-Knowledge: A Defense of Theory-Theory', in Theories of Theories of Mind, eds. P. Carruthers and P. K. Smith, 22–38. Week 2: Displaced perception and semantic ascent Fred Dretske, 'Introspection', in Naturalizing the Mind, 39–63. Robert Gordon, 'Simulation without Introspection or Inference from Me to You', in Mental Simulation: Evaluations and Applications, eds. T. Stone and M. Davies, 53–67. Week 3: Monitoring theory Shaun Nichols and Stephen Stich, 'Reading One's Own Mind', in Mindreading: An Integrated Account of Pretence, Self-awareness, and Understanding Other Minds, 150–99. Week 4: Hybrid approaches Alvin Goldman, 'Self-Attribution', in Simulating Minds: The Philosophy, Psychology, and Neuroscience of Mindreading, 223–57. Philip Robbins, 'Knowing Me, Knowing You: Theory of Mind and the Machinery of Introspection', Journal of Consciousness Studies 11 : 129–43. Focus Questions:1. What distinguishes 'inside access' from 'outside access' views of introspection?2. To what extent is the theory-theoretic approach to introspection wedded to the idea that first-person and third-person mindreading are mechanistically symmetric capacities?3. What reasons are there for distinguishing between different types of introspection, and why might those taxonomic distinctions matter for theory construction in this area?4. In what sense, if any, are personality traits introspectible?5. Debates about third-person mindreading have revolved around the relative merits of theory-theory and simulation theory, whereas debates about introspection have taken a slightly different focus. For example, no one has defended a simulation-theoretic account of introspection. Why might that be? (shrink)