Berkeley's sermons on passive obedience in the Irish context -- Science and sociability: Berkeley's "bond of society" -- Piety, perception, and the free-thinkers -- Luxury, moderation, and the south sea bubble -- Planting religion in the New World, 1722 - 1732 -- Improving Ireland: luxury, virtue, and economic development -- Bishop of Cloyne: protestantism, patriotism, and a national panacea.
A Scientific Approach The facts detailed in this briefing are the results of scientific exploration of terror networks and sacred values and their association to political violence. The research is sponsored by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the National Science Foundation.
What sorts of things are there in the world? Clearly enough, there are concrete, material things; but are there other things too, perhaps nonconcrete or non-material things? Some people believe that there are such things, which are often called abstract ; purported examples of such objects include numbers, properties, possible but non-actual states of affairs, propositions, and sets. Following a long-standing tradition, I shall describe persons who believe that there are abstract objects as ‘platonists’. In this paper, I shall not (...) directly address the plausibility of platonism, as compared with its rivals; instead, I shall confine my attention to one way in which some people have tried to combine platonism and theism. More specifically, I shall concentrate upon the claim that abstract objects depend upon God ontologically ; I shall argue that platonistic theists should reject DEP in favour of the claim that abstract objects exist independently of God . In order to evaluate the relative merits of DEP versus IND, it will be helpful to examine in some detail a particular articulation of DEP. When it comes to recent work on DEP, we can do no better in this regard than to examine the recent work of Thomas V. Morris and Christopher H. Menzel. According Morris and Menzel, there is a sense in which God literally creates such abstracta through engaging in intellective activities. (shrink)
Toward the end of Hume's Dialogues concerning Natural Religion, Philo catalogues the ‘frivolous observances’, ‘rapturous ecstasies’ and ‘bigotted credulity’ of ‘vulgar superstition’, concluding that ‘true religion, I allow, has no such pernicious consequences: But we must treat of religion, as it has com monly been found in the world’. This would be a mild enough sort of caveat were it not nigh on impossible to determine exactly what counts as true religion, and how it figures in Hume's argument. Typically, answers (...) to this puzzle have required identifying the positions of the discussants, and then arguing that one of them represents Hume's views. A catalogue of the options may prove instructive. (shrink)
Rights of Women attracted much UK media attention in late 2014 by bringing a judicial review that challenged the reduced provisions for family law legal aid available for victims of domestic violence: R v The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 35. In June 2015, within Rights of Women’s 40th anniversary year, Hannah Camplin interviewed the organisation’s Director Emma Scott about the decision to bring the judicial review, the advantages and challenges of the judicial review (...) process, and the experience of strategic litigation within the context of Rights of Women’s long history of campaigning for women’s rights. What emerged is a portrait of a feminist organisation in 2015, and, in a fast changing political and financial landscape, the dual importance of collaborative working and the need for flexibility in service provision and campaigning tools. (shrink)
[David Charles] Aristotle, it appears, sometimes identifies well-being with one activity, sometimes with several, including ethical virtue. I argue that this appearance is misleading. In the Nicomachean Ethics, intellectual contemplation is the central case of human well-being, but is not identical with it. Ethically virtuous activity is included in human well-being because it is an analogue of intellectual contemplation. This structure allows Aristotle to hold that while ethically virtuous activity is valuable in its own right, the best life available for (...) humans is centred around, but not wholly constituted by, intellectual contemplation. /// [Dominic Scott] In Nicomachean Ethics X 7-8, Aristotle distinguishes two kinds of eudaimonia, primary and secondary. The first corresponds to contemplation, the second to activity in accordance with moral virtue and practical reason. My task in this paper is to elucidate this distinction. Like Charles, I interpret it as one between paradigm and derivative cases; unlike him, I explain it in terms of similarity, not analogy. Furthermore, once the underlying nature of the distinction is understood, we can reconcile the claim that paradigm eudaimonia consists just in contemplation with a passage in the first book requiring eudaimonia to involve all intrinsic goods. (shrink)
It is hard to think of a more banal statement one could make about the law than to say that it necessarily claims legal authority to govern conduct. What, after all, is a legal institution if not an entity that purports to have the legal power to create rules, confer rights, and impose obligations? Whether legal institutions necessarily claim the moral authority to exercise their legal powers is another question entirely. Some legal theorists have thought that they do—others have not (...) been so sure. But no one has ever denied that the law holds itself out as having the legal authority to tell us what we may or may not do. (shrink)
Scott Sturgeon presents an original account of mental states and their dynamics. He develops a detailed story of coarse- and fine-grained mental states, a novel perspective on how they fit together, an engaging theory of the rational transitions between them, and a fresh view of how formal methods can advance our understanding in this area. In doing so, he addresses a deep four-way divide in literature on epistemic rationality. Formal epistemology is done in specialized languages--often seeming a lot more (...) like mathematics than Plato--and so can alienate philosophers who are drawn to more traditional work on thought experiments in epistemic rationality. Conversely, informal epistemology appears to be a lot more like Plato than mathematics and, as such, it tends to deter philosophers drawn to formal models of the phenomena. Similarly, the epistemology of coarse-grained states boils down everything to a discussion of rational belief--making the area appear a lot more like foundations of knowledge than anything useful for the theory rational decision, such as decision-making under uncertainty. The Rational Mind unifies work in all of these areas for the first time. (shrink)
In this book, Scott Soames illuminates the notion of truth and the role it plays in our ordinary thought as well as in our logical, philosophical, and scientific theories. Soames aims to integrate and deepen the most significant insights on truth from a variety of sources. He powerfully brings together the best technical work and the most important philosophical reflection on truth and shows how each can illuminate the other. Investigating such questions as whether we need a truth predicate (...) at all, what theoretical tasks it allows us to accomplish, and how we are to understand the content of any predicate capable of accomplishing these tasks, Soames organizes his discussion into three parts. Part I addresses crucial foundational issues as it identifies the bearers of truth, provides a basis for distinguishing truth from other notions, and formulates positive responses to well-known forms of truth-skepticism. Part II explicates the formal theories of Alfred Tarski and Saul Kripke and evaluates the philosophical significance of their work. It discusses their treatments of the Liar paradox, the relationship between truth and proof, the notion of a partially defined predicate, the concepts of logical truth and logical consequence, and the connection between truth and meaning. Part III extends important lessons drawn from Tarski and Kripke into new domains: vague predicates, the Sorites paradox, and the development of a larger, deflationary perspective on truth. Throughout the book, Soames examines a wide range of deflationary theories of truth, and attempts to separate what is correct and worth preserving in them from what is not. In doing so, he seeks to clear up many of the most significant philosophical doubts about truth. Written for a general audience while offering engaging material to the specialist, this rich study will be profitably read by both. (shrink)
This book analyses the straw man fallacy and its deployment in philosophical reasoning. While commonly invoked in both academic dialogue and public discourse, it has not until now received the attention it deserves as a rhetorical device. Scott Aikin and John Casey propose that straw manning essentially consists in expressing distorted representations of one's critical interlocutor. To this end, the straw man comprises three dialectical forms, and not only the one that is usually suggested: the straw man, the weak (...) man and the hollow man. Moreover, they demonstrate that straw manning is unique among fallacies as it has no particular logical form in itself, because it is an instance of inappropriate meta-argument, or argument about arguments. They discuss the importance of the onlooking audience to the successful deployment of the straw man, reasoning that the existence of an audience complicates the dialectical boundaries of argument. Providing a lively, provocative and thorough analysis of the straw man fallacy, this book will appeal to postgraduates and researchers alike, working in a range of fields including fallacies, rhetoric, argumentation theory and informal logic. (shrink)
This ambitious, interdisciplinary book seeks to explain the origins of religion using our knowledge of the evolution of cognition. A cognitive anthropologist and psychologist, Scott Atran argues that religion is a by-product of human evolution just as the cognitive intervention, cultural selection, and historical survival of religion is an accommodation of certain existential and moral elements that have evolved in the human condition.
A problem which was widely recognised during Schleiermacher's life, and one which I think is not yet satisfactorily solved, concerned the integration of feeling and concepts within human consciousness. Within the domain of philosophy of religion it may be phrased as follows: How does religious feeling relate to rational reflection such that each complements and enriches the other? Schleiermacher was convinced that religion never originates in human understanding or autonomy and that one's understanding of the world is not necessarily dependent (...) on religious faith. But he was equally convinced that reflection and religion ought to enjoy a harmony which reflects the harmony of the universe, and this ideal motivated his continuous attempt to construct a complementary philosophy and theology. His hope was to show that ‘understanding and feeling… remain distinct, but they touch each other and form a galvanic pile.… The innermost life of the spirit consists in the galvanic action thus produced in the feeling of the understanding and the understanding of the feeling, during which, however, the two poles always remain deflected from each other.’. (shrink)
An exciting trend in virtue ethics is its engagement with empirical psychology. Virtue theorists have connected virtue to various constructs in empirical psychology. The strategy of grounding virtue in the psychological theory of habit, however, has yet to be fully explored. Recent decades of psychological research have shown that habits are an indispensable feature of human life, and virtues and habits have a number of similarities. In this paper, we consider whether virtues are psychological habits. After some background to frame (...) the interaction between the two disciplines, we explain the predominant account of habit in psychology, which we call “standard psychological habit,” in the next section. We then consider Servais Pinckaers’s objections that virtue cannot be a habit and conclude that standard psychological habits cannot be virtues. Finally, we argue that another psychological account of habits, goal-directed habits, withstand Pinckaers’s objections and provide a promising construct for understanding virtue. (shrink)
In the last decade, the familiar problem of the regress of reasons has returned to prominent consideration in epistemology. And with the return of the problem, evaluation of the options available for its solution is begun anew. Reason’s regress problem, roughly put, is that if one has good reasons to believe something, one must have good reason to hold those reasons are good. And for those reasons, one must have further reasons to hold they are good, and so a regress (...) of reasons looms. In this new study, Aikin presents a full case for infinitism as a response to the problem of the regress of reasons. Infinitism is the view that one must have a non-terminating chain of reasons in order to be justified. The most defensible form of infinitism, he argues, is that of a mixed theory – that is, epistemic infinitism must be consistent with and integrate other solutions to the regress problem. (shrink)
Since the Middle Ages, Aristotle has been hailed as the father of economics. But recently classicists have maintained that he did no economics at all. This book clears up the anomaly. The author argues that Aristotle had a theory of money and commerce, but that it is ethical rather than economic. According to Aristotle ethics and economics are fundamentally opposed and can never be reconciled.
Langeweile wird in dieser Anthologie als Signatur der Moderne lesbar: Sie durchdringt die gegenwärtige Kultur, wird aber nach wie vor weggeschoben, ja tabuisiert. Der Band bietet eine Textauswahl von klassischen Denkern sowie von Autorinnen und Autoren des modernen Diskurses bis heute und stellt den Zusammenhang mit verwandten Phänomenen der Sinnleere und Erschöpfung her. Als zunehmendes Massenphänomen in saturierten Gesellschaften entwickelt die Langeweile eine pathologische Dynamik, wenn ihr nicht ein eigener Raum gelassen wird. Ein Plädoyer für die Anerkennung dieses unvermeidlichen Gefühls. (...) Mit Texten von Blaise Pascal, Immanuel Kant, Arthur Schopenhauer, Søren Kierkegaard, Charles Baudelaire, Friedrich Nietzsche, Georg Simmel, Walter Benjamin, Bertrand Russell, Iwan Gontscharow, Siegfried Kracauer, Emil Cioran, Giacomo Leopardi, Wolf Lepenies, Elizabeth S. Goodstein, Peter Toohey, Martin Doehlemann, Françoise Wemelsfelder und anderen. (shrink)
Scott Soames’ Reference and Description contains arguments against a number of different versions of two-dimensional semantics. After early chapters on descriptivism and on Kripke’s anti-descriptivist arguments, a chapter each is devoted to the roots of twodimensionalism in “slips, errors, or misleading suggestions” by Kripke and Kaplan, and to the two-dimensional approaches developed by Stalnaker (1978) and by Davies and Humberstone (1981). The bulk of the book (about 200 pages) is devoted to “ambitious twodimensionalism”, attributed to Frank Jackson, David Lewis, (...) and me. After a quick overview of two-dimensional approaches, I will focus on Soames’ discussion of ambitious twodimensionalism. I will then turn to a system advocated by Soames that is itself strikingly reminiscent of a two-dimensional approach. Two-dimensional semantic theories are varieties of possible-worlds semantics on which linguistic items can be evaluated relative to possibilities in two different ways, yielding two sorts of intensional semantic values, which can be seen as two “dimensions” of meaning. The second dimension is the familiar sort of Kripkean evaluation in metaphysically possible worlds, so that necessarily coextensive terms (such as ‘Hesperus’ and ‘Phosphorus’ or ‘water’ and ‘H2O’) always have the same semantic value. The first dimension behaves differently, so that there are typically at least some cases where necessarily coextensive terms have different semantic values on the first dimension. For this reason, the two-dimensional framework is sometimes seen as a way of granting many of the insights of a Kripkean approach to meaning (on the second dimension), while retaining elements of a Fregean approach to meaning (on the first dimension). (shrink)
The tradition descending from Frege and Russell has typically treated theories of meaning either as theories of meanings, or as theories of truth conditions. However, propositions of the classical sort don't exist, and truth conditions can't provide all the information required by a theory of meaning. In this book, one of the world's leading philosophers of language offers a way out of this dilemma. Traditionally conceived, propositions are denizens of a "third realm" beyond mind and matter, "grasped" by mysterious Platonic (...) intuition. As conceived here, they are cognitive-event types in which agents predicate properties and relations of things--in using language, in perception, and in nonlinguistic thought. Because of this, one's acquaintance with, and knowledge of, propositions is acquaintance with, and knowledge of, events of one's cognitive life. This view also solves the problem of "the unity of the proposition" by explaining how propositions can be genuinely representational, and therefore bearers of truth. The problem, in the traditional conception, is that sentences, utterances, and mental states are representational because of the relations they bear to inherently representational Platonic complexes of universals and particulars. Since we have no way of understanding how such structures can be representational, independent of interpretations placed on them by agents, the problem is unsolvable when so conceived. However, when propositions are taken to be cognitive-event types, the order of explanation is reversed and a natural solution emerges. Propositions are representational because they are constitutively related to inherently representational cognitive acts. Strikingly original, What Is Meaning? is a major advance. (shrink)
Introduction: working together on individuality / Lynn K. Nyhart and Scott Lidgard -- The work of biological individuality: concepts and contexts / Scott Lidgard and Lynn K. Nyhart -- Cells, colonies, and clones: individuality in the volvocine algae / Matthew D. Herron -- Individuality and the control of life cycles / Beckett Sterner -- Discovering the ties that bind: cell-cell communication and the development of cell sociology / Andrew S. Reynolds -- Alternation of generations and individuality, 1851 / (...) Lynn K. Nyhart and Scott Lidgard -- Spencer's evolutionary entanglement: from liminal individuals to implicit collectivities / Snait Gissis -- Biological individuality and enkapsis: from Martin Heidenhain's synthesiology to the völkisch national community / Olivier Rieppel -- Parasitology, zoology, and society in France, ca. 1880-1920 / Michael A. Osborne -- Metabolism, autonomy, and individuality / Hannah Landecker -- Bodily parts in the structure-function dialectic / Ingo Brigandt -- Commentaries: historical, biological, and philosophical perspectives -- Distrust that particular intuition: resilient essentialisms and empirical challenges in the history of biological individuality / James Elwick -- Biological individuality: a relational reading / Scott F. Gilbert -- Philosophical dimensions of individuality / Alan C. Love and Ingo Brigandt. (shrink)
_Matters of Mind_ examines the mind-body problem. It offers a chapter by chapter analysis of debates surrounding the problem, including visual experience, consciousness and the problem of Zombies and Ghosts. It will prove invaluable for those interested in epistemology, philosophy of mind and cognitive science.