In the present manuscript, we comment upon a paper that strongly criticized an expert report written by the consultants of the defense in a case of pedophilia, in which clinical and neuro-scientific data were used to establish the causal link between brain alterations and onset of criminal behavior. These critiques appear to be based mainly on wrong pieces of information and on a misinterpretation of the logical reasoning adopted by defense consultants. Here we provide a point-by-point reply to the issues (...) raised in the above paper and also discuss the potential role that neuroscience may contribute in the forensic context. Did the forensic neuroscience defense consultants claim the existence of a deterministic relationship between brain structure or function and behavior? How did the neuroscientific logic work in this specific case? How may the classic psychiatric/neurologic examination and neuroscientific evidence work side by side? Does the rarity of a disease impact on the causal relationship between the disease and the crime? Do neuroscientific data need to be interpreted? We address the above questions and conclude that neuroscience may strengthen the results of psychiatric evaluations, thus reducing uncertainty in the forensic settings. (shrink)
This essay argues that despite of the feminist critique of Merleau-Ponty his phenomenology can be positively appropriated to the theory of sexual difference. It focuses on three issues: the first one is closely linked to the Phenomenology of Perception and introduces a concept of "difference as differentiation". The second one is concerned with the intersubjective dimension of sexuality and will be called a "sexual syncretism". Finally, I’m referring to Merleau-Ponty's notion of "chiasm" in his late work The Visible and the (...) Invisible in order to apply it to the theory of sexual difference. At this point, the difference between sexual beings will be conceptualized as "chiasmatic intertwining". In doing so, I hope to show that Merleau-Ponty's phenomenology is a helpful resource for philosophical research that is mainly concerned with the questions of sexuality and sexual difference. (shrink)
The article appearing previously in this journal entitled “Styles of Thought on the Continental Drift Debate” (Pellegrini 2019) prompted a response from Weber and Šešelja (2020) which they termed as “a defence of rationalist accounts”. They argue that their self-designated “sophisticated rationalism” explains the closure of the continental-drift debate without being affected by my critiques to rationalist approaches. While ignoring the empirical evidence that shows the complexity of the debate and the necessity to include broader social elements in the (...) analysis (such as scientists denying continental drift even after the plate tectonics theory, others supporting it without being familiarized with the literature), they proclaim to be unconvinced about the analysis of the styles of thought. In order to clarify differences in the approach to the continental-drift historical controversy, I respond here to the criticism my paper drew while discussing the place of rationalism when explaining the acceptance of a theory. I will argue that their distinction between “crude” and “sophisticated” rationalism does not solve the problem of social aspects being left aside by rationalists in view of the acceptance of a theory. I will also argue that in order to understand what leads people to embrace a belief (namely scientists in accepting a theory), the analysis of mere cognitive or epistemic arguments is not enough and it leads to a reductionist explanation as to social behaviour. (shrink)
The Scottish Enlightenment shaped a new conception of history as a gradual and universal progress from savagery to civil society. Whereas women emancipated themselves from the yoke of male-masters, men in turn acquired polite manners and became civilized. Such a conception, however, presents problematic questions: why were the Americans still savage? Why was it that the Europeans only had completed all the stages of the historic process? Could modern societies escape the destiny of earlier empires and avoid decadence? Was there (...) a limit beyond which women's influence might result in dehumanization? The Scottish Enlightenment's legacy for modernity emerges here as a two-faced Janus, an unresolved tension between universalism and hierarchy, progress and the limits of progress. (shrink)
Can art, religion, or philosophy afford ineffable insights? If so, what are they? The idea of ineffability has puzzled philosophers from Laozi to Wittgenstein. In Ineffability and its Metaphysics: The Unspeakable in Art, Religion and Philosophy, Silvia Jonas examines different ways of thinking about what ineffable insights might involve metaphysically, and shows which of these are in fact incoherent. Jonas discusses the concepts of ineffable properties and objects, ineffable propositions, ineffable content, and ineffable knowledge, examining the metaphysical pitfalls involved (...) in these concepts. Ultimately, she defends the idea that ineffable insights as found in aesthetic, religious, and philosophical contexts are best understood in terms of self-acquaintance, a particular kind of non-propositional knowledge. Ineffability as a philosophical topic is as old as the history of philosophy itself, but contributions to the exploration of ineffability have been sparse. The theory developed by Jonas makes the concept tangible and usable in many different philosophical contexts. (shrink)
I argue that recent attempts to deflect Access Problems for realism about a priori domains such as mathematics, logic, morality, and modality using arguments from evolution result in two kinds of explanatory overkill: the Access Problem is eliminated for contentious domains, and realist belief becomes viciously immune to arguments from dispensability, and to non-rebutting counter-arguments more generally.
This article presents the first, systematic analysis of the ethical challenges posed by recommender systems through a literature review. The article identifies six areas of concern, and maps them onto a proposed taxonomy of different kinds of ethical impact. The analysis uncovers a gap in the literature: currently user-centred approaches do not consider the interests of a variety of other stakeholders—as opposed to just the receivers of a recommendation—in assessing the ethical impacts of a recommender system.
Exposición realizada por Silvia Hernández, Doctora en Ciencias Sociales, en la segunda ronda del ciclo de conversaciones “Crítica a la Epidemiología Política. Prácticas y racionalidad neoliberales en tiempos de pandemia”, organizado por el equipo editorial de la Revista de Filosofía Otrosiglo, enero 2021. Disponible en Youtube, canal Revista Otrosiglo. _Palabras Clave: _Pandemia – Ideología – Neoliberalismo – Covid19.
Recent theories on cognitive science have stressed the significance of moral intuition as a counter to and complementary part of moral reasoning in decision making. Thus, the aim of this paper is to create an integrated framework that can account for both intuitive and reflective cognitive processes, in order to explore the antecedents of ethical decision making. To do that, we build on Scholasticism, an important medieval school of thought from which descends the main pillars of the modern Catholic social (...) doctrine. Particularly, the focus will be on the scholastic concept of synderesis, which is an innate human faculty that constantly inclines decision makers toward universal moral principles. Managerial implications are discussed, stressing how a rediscovery of decision makers’ intuitive moral judgments could be relevant in the reflective thinking practice of managers’ ethical reasoning, thus saving them from rational insensitivity to ethical dilemmas. (shrink)
The existence of fundamental moral disagreements is a central problem for moral realism and has often been contrasted with an alleged absence of disagreement in mathematics. However, mathematicians do in fact disagree on fundamental questions, for example on which set-theoretic axioms are true, and some philosophers have argued that this increases the plausibility of moral vis-à-vis mathematical realism. I argue that the analogy between mathematical and moral disagreement is not as straightforward as those arguments present it. In particular, I argue (...) that pluralist accounts of mathematics render fundamental mathematical disagreements compatible with mathematical realism in a way in which moral disagreements and moral realism are not. 11. (shrink)
What are the relevant values to the appraisal of research programs? This question remains hotly debated, as philosophers have recently proposed many lists of values potentially relevant to scientific appraisal. Surprisingly, despite being mentioned in many lists, little attention has been paid to fruitfulness. It is unclear how fruitfulness should be explicated, and whether it has any substantial role in scientific appraisal. In this paper, I argue we should explicate fruitfulness as the capacity to develop of research programs. Moreover, I (...) provide a novel strategy to assess and compare the fruitfulness of programs focused on their research questions and heuristics. To illustrate how this strategy would work, I will discuss a case study, namely the adaptationist program in evolutionary psychology. (shrink)
Modulating connectivity measures in EEG-based neurofeedback studies is assumed to be a promising therapeutic and training tool. However, little is known so far about its effects and trainability. In the present study, we investigated the effects of up- and down-regulating SMR coherence by means of neurofeedback training on EEG activity and memory functions. Twenty adults performed 10 neurofeedback training sessions in which half of them tried to increase EEG coherence between Cz and CPz in the SMR frequency range, while the (...) other half tried to down-regulate coherence. Up-regulation of SMR coherence led to between- and within-session changes in EEG coherence. SMR power increased across neurofeedback training sessions but not within training sessions. Cross-over training effects on baseline EEG measures were also observed in this group. Up-regulation of SMR coherence was also associated with improvements in memory functions when comparing pre- and post-test results. Participants were not able to down-regulate SMR coherence. This group did not show any changes in baseline EEG measures or memory functions comparing pre- and post-test. Our results provide insights in the trainability and effects of connectivity-based neurofeedback training and indications for its practical application. (shrink)
Public engagement is one of the fundamental pillars of the European programme for research and innovation _Horizon 2020_. The programme encourages engagement that not only fosters science education and dissemination, but also promotes two-way dialogues between scientists and the public at various stages of research. Establishing such dialogues between different groups of societal actors is seen as crucial in order to attain epistemic as well as social desiderata at the intersection between science and society. However, whether these dialogues can actually (...) help attaining these desiderata is far from obvious. This paper discusses some of the costs, risks, and benefits of dialogical public engagement practices, and proposes a strategy to analyse these argumentative practices based on a three-tiered model of epistemic exchange. As a case study, we discuss the phenomenon of vaccine hesitancy, arguably a result of suboptimal public engagement, and show how the proposed model can shed new light on the problem. (shrink)
This paper aims to analyze the concept of desire in the ethical project of Spinoza. On the first part, the pathway to the concept of desire is recovered, leading to the preposition nine of the third part of Ethics, in which the concept of desire is defined as the essence of human being. On the second part, taking into consideration the partial results of a research developed in the field of mental health that aims to understand the motives of internment (...) of children and adolescents in a psychiatric institution with the characteristics of an asylum, it will be developed an analysis of two distinct dimensions of this study considering the concepts of Spinoza’s Ethic. (shrink)
In light of current tendencies, where appreciating plurality and uphold everyone’s equal value is being questioned from different directions, there is arguably a need to revive the ethical dimension of history education as a way of learning about difficult histories, including traumatic pasts. Since the 1970s historical consciousness has played an important role in articulating an approach to history with an ethical mindset. Although many theories suggest that there is a connection between ethics and historical consciousness, a deeper understanding of (...) this link is generally absent. This article discusses selected key texts by major researchers in the field, namely Rüsen, Seixas and Morton, Chinnery, and Simon. Their texts reflect four different perspectives, which, in this article are kept in dialogue with one another as a way of stimulating and sharpening ethical understanding and judgement in history education through the theoretical toolbox offered. (shrink)
This article analyses the ethical aspects of multistakeholder recommendation systems (RSs). Following the most common approach in the literature, we assume a consequentialist framework to introduce the main concepts of multistakeholder recommendation. We then consider three research questions: who are the stakeholders in a RS? How are their interests taken into account when formulating a recommendation? And, what is the scientific paradigm underlying RSs? Our main finding is that multistakeholder RSs (MRSs) are designed and theorised, methodologically, according to neoclassical welfare (...) economics. We consider and reply to some methodological objections to MRSs on this basis, concluding that the multistakeholder approach offers the resources to understand the normative social dimension of RSs. (shrink)
In this article, we deal with the evaluation of the losses suffered by persons living in urban areas as a result of energy services. In the first part, we analyse how by adopting different informational foci we obtain contrasting interpersonal evaluations regarding the same loss. In the second part, we distinguish between a diachronic and a hypothetical/moralised threshold for harm in order to assess whether individuals are benefiting from or being harmed by a given energy service. Our argument is that (...) the most accurate evaluation of an individual damage caused by an energy service can be obtained by using capabilities as informational focus, instead of realised wellbeing or means to wellbeing, and by interpreting the loss in relation to a hypothetical/moralised threshold that corresponds to a list of central capabilities. In the last part, we address monetary and non-monetary compensations for a loss that is evaluated in terms of capabilities. Accordingly, we expound how compensation policies can either restore the capabilities lost due to energy services or monetarily compensate the individual for the fact that a given capability (or set of capabilities) has been irremediably lost. (shrink)
Positivismo jurídico normativo: de la metafísica a la política El presente trabajo toma como punto de partida el libro Positivismo jurídico “interno”, de María Cristina Redondo, y propone una concepción alternativa de positivismo jurídico normativista. Se sostiene que la teoría del derecho puede ser neutral en la medida en que sea intersubjetiva y transparente en cuanto a sus propias premisas metafísicas. Los objetivos del trabajo son el de echar luz acerca del papel de la metafísica y del sentido común en (...) la construcción del concepto de derecho, y el de hacer más abiertamente transparentes las elecciones ético-políticas que constituyen a los discursos jurídicos, incluidos los teóricos. El trabajo analiza las tesis de Redondo acerca de la distinción entre ontología y epistemología y la posibilidad de conocimiento objetivo: la idea central defendida es que la inter-subjetividad, y no la objetividad, debería ser el criterio apropiado para el positivismo jurídico normativista. Luego se examina el rol de la normatividad en el positivismo jurídico normativista, enfocándose en la naturaleza metafísica de la tesis de que el derecho pertenece a los campos de la normatividad y la razón práctica. Las secciones siguientes examinan las concepciones reduccionistas y anti-reduccionistas sobre las “entidades” jurídicas y la teoría de las fuentes del derecho. La sección final aborda la cuestión de la neutralidad valorativa de la teoría jurídica y analiza la posibilidad de describir el punto de vista interno de los participantes sin asumir compromiso alguno con la práctica jurídica existente. (shrink)
In this paper, I argue that religious belief is epistemically equivalent to mathematical belief. Abstract beliefs don't fall under ‘naive’, evidence-based analyses of rationality. Rather, their epistemic permissibility depends, I suggest, on four criteria: predictability, applicability, consistency, and immediate acceptability of the fundamental axioms. The paper examines to what extent mathematics meets these criteria, juxtaposing the results with the case of religion. My argument is directed against a widespread view according to which belief in mathematics is clearly rationally acceptable whereas (...) belief in religion is not. The paper also aims to make some of the implications of contemporary mathematics available to philosophers working in different fields. (shrink)
In the last few decades, the historiographical categories rationalism and empiricism have been criticized for their limitations to explain the complex positions and the links held by the philosophers tradiotnally attached to them. This narrative was firstly conceived by Kantian German historians and began to become standard at the turn of the twentieh century. Nonetheless, nineteenth-century French historiography developed other narratives by which early modern philosophers were classified according to alternative criteria. In the first edition of Histoire comparée des systémes (...) de philosophie (1804), Joseph-Marie Degérando distinguishes three first-order early modern schools founded by Bacon, Descartes and Leibniz, respectively. Degérando introduces the empiricism and rationalism distinction as one among others, and not as the fundamental one. In addition, he separates empiricism from experimental philosophy. The last one, along with speculative philosophy, is said to conciliate senses and reason. As a result, this account offers philosophical groupings different from those constructed by the standard narrative. Furthermore, it draws on labels and classification criteria which were part of the early modern philosophical discourse. (shrink)
Drawing an analogy between modal structuralism about mathematics and theism, I o er a structuralist account that implicitly de nes theism in terms of three basic relations: logical and metaphysical priority, and epis- temic superiority. On this view, statements like `God is omniscient' have a hypothetical and a categorical component. The hypothetical component provides a translation pattern according to which statements in theistic language are converted into statements of second-order modal logic. The categorical component asserts the logical possibility of the (...) theism struc- ture on the basis of uncontroversial facts about the physical world. This structuralist reading of theism preserves objective truth-values for theistic statements while remaining neutral on the question of ontology. Thus, it o ers a way of understanding theism to which a naturalist cannot object, and it accommodates the fact that religious belief, for many theists, is an essentially relational matter. (shrink)
This essay provides an overview of the ways in which contemporary philosophers have tried to make sense of ineffability as encountered in aesthetic contexts. Section 1 sets up the problem of aesthetic ineffability by putting it into historical perspective. Section 2 specifies the kinds of questions that may be raised with regard to aesthetic ineffability, as well as the kinds of answer each one of those questions would require. Section 3 investigates arguments that seek to locate aesthetic ineffability within the (...) object of aesthetic experiences, i.e. within aesthetic content. Section 4 discusses arguments that seek to locate aesthetic ineffability within the subject of aesthetic experience. (shrink)
To what extent did the debate on the orangutan contribute to the global Enlightenment? This article focuses on the first 150 years of the introduction, dissection, and public exposition of the so-called ‘orangutan’ in Europe, between the 1630s, when the first specimens arrived in the Netherlands, and the 1770s, when the British debate about slavery and abolitionism reframed the boundaries between the human and animal kingdoms. Physicians, natural historians, antiquarians, philosophers, geographers, lawyers, and merchants all contributed to the knowledge of (...) the orangutan, while also reshaping the boundaries of humanity: when the human/animal divide narrowed, the divide between ‘savage’ and ‘civilized’ peoples crystallized, becoming wider than in any previous period. (shrink)
When a patient with a serious mental illness expresses a desire for children, mental health professionals are faced with an ethical dilemma. To date, little research has been conducted into their strategies for dealing with these issues.
: Shannon Sullivan's critique of Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of Perception is based on the argument that, due to his concept of the "anonymous body," his theory of intersubjectivity omits the particularities of bodies, such as gender. I argue that Merleau-Ponty's "anonymous body" (le corps phénoménal) is not in fact "neutral" as Sullivan suggests, and moreover that he does not ignore differences but rather provides us with the idea of difference as a process of differentiation. Additionally, I argue that Sullivan's concept of (...) "hypothetical construction," which is introduced as an alternative to Merleau-Ponty, turns out to be a conscious construction, not reflecting upon its very conditions. Thus, Sullivan's account fails by presupposing what in fact needs to be explained: the particularities. (shrink)
The paper considers one of the most enigmatic problems of Wittgenstein`s Tractatus - the problem of solipsism. The authorś task is to reveal how the discussion of solipsism illuminates Wittgenstein`s metaphysical view in this treatise. Wittgenstein`s method is considered as one through which the status of what cannot be said is demonstrated. Wittgenstein has not embrased solipsism or idealism in the Tractatus, and neither has he rejected metaphysics as a whole. His attack has been directed against dogmatic philosophy and ethics, (...) against the effort to say what cannot be said in true/false propositions. The discussion of solipsism brings into philosophy the importance of metaphysical "I" as a transcendental limit of the world and language. Wittgenstein`s aim in the Tractatus has been twofold: a) to show the nonsensicality of philosophical, ethical, aesthetical propositions , b) to emphasize, that the inexpresibility of the higher is the most important thing in our lives. (shrink)
Nel presente articolo tenteremo di mettere in luce in che modo la filosofia di Gilles Deleuze intrattenga un rapporto ineludibile con il tema delle pratiche, volendo mostrare il profondo interesse che il pensatore francese nutre nei confronti dei _πράγματα__. _Per seguire un tale itinerario, al contempo speculativo e pragmatico, ci soffermeremo su alcuni concetti chiave dell’opera deleuziana (creazione, invenzione, problematicismo, drammatizzazione e genesi), che crediamo possano contribuire a mettere in luce nel suo agire evenemenziale la dimensione “praticalista” del pensiero di (...) Deleuze. (shrink)
Das Buch bietet die erste kritische Edition der Artikel XXV-XXVII der Summa (Quaestiones ordinariae) des Heinrich von Gent. Dabei leistet es einen Beitrag zur Geschichte der Formen und Pfade der Ideenvermittlung im Mittelalter und zur mittelalterlichen Buchkultur. Die Kollationierung der Handschriften der Artikel XXV-XXVII und die Untersuchung ihrer materiellen Überlieferung haben der Editorin erlaubt, den Prozess der Ausarbeitung, Publikation und Verbreitung einer Portion von Heinrichs Summa über einen längeren Zeitraum in großer Detailgenauigkeit zu rekonstruieren. Die hier edierten Artikel enthalten ein (...) Kernstück von Heinrichs theologischem und metaphysischem System. In der Behandlung von Einheit, Natur und Leben Gottes entfalten sie eine rationale Darstellung des ersten Prinzips. (shrink)
RESUMO O trabalho apresenta uma discussão polêmica, complexa e enigmática para a teoria do conhecimento: a elaboração da dialética negativa na concepção da teoria crítica frankfurtiana – sobretudo, adorniana – na interface com a dialética materialista, do marxismo. Do estudo emerge uma proposta de reestruturação do universo objetivo no sentido de indicar elementos subjetivos – por intermédio da teoria psicanalítica – como possibilidade de superação do estado da alienação ampla: intelectual, política, cultural e humana. Trata de confrontar aspectos metodológicos, teóricos (...) e subjetivos em âmbito social amparado por uma perspectiva crítica. As contribuições, para além dos embates entre o idealismo clássico e o materialismo moderno, atravessam, entre outras, as perspectivas heideggeriana, hegeliana, kantiana, freudiana, marxiana e adorniana, visando apresentar fundamentos epistemológicos e teóricos que embasam a teoria crítica ao tempo que identifica diferenças e convergências entre o materialismo sócio-histórico dialético e a dialética negativa; componentes relevantes para compreender a incursão desta teoria no âmbito das diversas áreas do conhecimento. ABSTRACT This paper presents a controversial, complex and enigmatic discussion for knowledge theory: the development of the concept of negative dialectic Frankfurtian critical theory – especially Adornian – on the interface with the materialist dialectics of Marxism. From this study emerges a restructuring proposal of the objective universe as to indicate subjective elements – through psychoanalytic theory – as a possibility to overcome the alienation state: intellectual, political, cultural and human. It is about confronting methodological, theoretical and subjective aspects of the social field supported by a critical perspective. The contributions, beyond the clashes between classical idealism and modern materialism cross, among others, the Heidegger, Hegel, Kant, Freud, Marx and Adorno's perspectives, aiming to present epistemological and theoretical foundations that underlie critical theory at the time that it identifies differences and convergences between historical social dialectic materialism and the negative dialectic; relevant components to understand the incursion of this theory in the context of various areas of knowledge. (shrink)
We propose a synthetic description of Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenology with the aim of providing physicists and philosophers with an alternative linguistic and conceptual framework to address the logical and ontological problematics emerged in quantum mechanics. Phenomenology’s cognitive devices such as the dynamical relationship between object and horizon, the presumptive synthesis and the constitution of an ontology based on the indivisibility of object and subject, not only show hermeneutic efficacy when applied to the study of human perception, but may prove to be (...) sufficiently innovative to lead to novel insights towards the understanding of the quantum mechanical theoretical structure: the traditional tenet of quantum physics being in discontinuity with the major characteristics of classical physics is shaken at its fundaments and a new perspective of continuity between the two worlds is opened. (shrink)