The volume brings together a collection of original papers on some of the main tenets of Joseph Raz's legal and political philosophy: Legal positivism and the nature of law, practical reason, authority, the value of equality, incommensurability, harm, group rights, and multiculturalism.
Originating as a proponent of U.S. exceptionalism during the Cold War, American Studies has now reinvented itself, vigorously critiquing various kinds of critical hegemony and launching innovative interdisciplinary endeavors. _The Futures of American Studies_ considers the field today and provides important deliberations on what it might yet become. Essays by both prominent and emerging scholars provide theoretically engaging analyses of the postnational impulse of current scholarship, the field's historical relationship to social movements, the status of theory, the state of higher (...) education in the United States, and the impact of ethnic and gender studies on area studies. They also investigate the influence of poststructuralism, postcolonial studies, sexuality studies, and cultural studies on U.S. nationalist—and antinationalist—discourses. No single overriding paradigm dominates the anthology. Instead, the articles enter into a lively and challenging dialogue with one another. A major assessment of the state of the field, _The Futures of American Studies_ is necessary reading for American Studies scholars. _Contributors._ Lindon Barrett, Nancy Bentley, Gillian Brown, Russ Castronovo, Eric Cheyfitz, Michael Denning, Winfried Fluck, Carl Gutierrez-Jones, Dana Heller, Amy Kaplan, Paul Lauter, Günter H. Lenz, George Lipsitz, Lisa Lowe, Walter Benn Michaels, José Estaban Muñoz, Dana D. Nelson, Ricardo L. Ortiz, Janice Radway, John Carlos Rowe, William V. Spanos. (shrink)
I explore some of the ways that assumptions about the nature of substance shape metaphysical debates about the structure of Reality. Assumptions about the priority of substance play a role in an argument for monism, are embedded in certain pluralist metaphysical treatments of laws of nature, and are central to discussions of substantivalism and relationalism. I will then argue that we should reject such assumptions and collapse the categorical distinction between substance and property.
Why are negative emotions so central in art reception far beyond tragedy? Revisiting classical aesthetics in the light of recent psychological research, we present a novel model to explain this much discussed paradox. We argue that negative emotions are an important resource for the arts in general, rather than a special license for exceptional art forms only. The underlying rationale is that negative emotions have been shown to be particularly powerful in securing attention, intense emotional involvement, and high memorability, and (...) hence is precisely what artworks strive for. Two groups of processing mechanisms are identified that conjointly adopt the particular powers of negative emotions for art's purposes. The first group consists of psychological distancing mechanisms that are activated along with the cognitive schemata of art, representation, and fiction. These schemata imply personal safety and control over continuing or discontinuing exposure to artworks, thereby preventing negative emotions from becoming outright incompatible with expectations of enjoyment. This distancing sets the stage for a second group of processing components that allow art recipients to positively embrace the experiencing of negative emotions, thereby rendering art reception more intense, more interesting, more emotionally moving, more profound, and occasionally even more beautiful. These components include compositional interplays of positiveandnegative emotions, the effects of aesthetic virtues of using the media of presentation on emotion perception, and meaning-making efforts. Moreover, our Distancing-Embracing model proposes that concomitant mixed emotions often help integrate negative emotions into altogether pleasurable trajectories. (shrink)
The structure of Chiodi's book is based on Vuillemin's important hermeneutical thesis that existentialism is one more step in the program of the romantics to give an absolute foundation to finite reality through the establishment of necessary relations between subjectivity and being. These relations, once revealed, would dispel the facticity and contingency in which the natural world is enshrouded. The role of Heidegger in this tradition involves one further dialectical twist, since Heidegger centers all Western Philosophy, including his own, around (...) the problem of ground in the manner proposed by the romantics. The suggested dialectical twist is then Heidegger's Kehre, a step beyond the radical contingency of Dasein in Sein und Zeit. Indeed, this contingency, once reached, shows unequivocally the failure of the romantic program. The ground cannot be ontologically connected with any object nor with the subject; it is rather the necessary history of the ground that determines all categorial differentiations in the world, including the reflective differentiation of subject-objects. Thus it becomes important to distinguish Heidegger from Hegel since, in both, history and necessity are characteristics of the ground. Chiodi gets to the bottom of this matter by pointing to the transfer of negativity from the process of history to the end of history. For Heidegger what is necessary is the repeated withdrawal of the ground so that it may never be confused with that which is known in any revelation or through all of them. This move, though clear, would still leave a fundamental ambiguity in the later philosophy of Heidegger: language, which acts as messenger from the ground to the world, must reflect the superabundance of Being from the standpoint of the ground while it only reflects possibilities of being from the standpoint of the world. This is an ambiguity that Heidegger would want to maintain. Chiodi's interpretation of Heidegger as a neo-platonist totally destroys this ambiguity and with it the very delicate balance created by Heidegger between infinite meaning and the ability of finite words to dwell upon it.--A. de L. M. (shrink)
Ecosemiotics is the study of sign processes (semioses) in relation to the natural environment in which they occur. The paper examines the cultural, biological, and evolutionary dimensions of ecosemioses on the basis of C. S. Peirce's theory of continuity between matter and mind and investigates the ecosemiotic dimensions of natural signs. Ecosemiotics and the semiotics of nature are distinguished from pansemiotism, and the coevolution of sign processes with their natural enviromnent is discussed as a determining factor of ecosemiosis.
G. Deledalle is the author of a Histoire de la philosophie américaine, and of some excellent studies on Dewey, such as La pédagogie de Dewey, philosophie de la continuité, and "Durkheim et Dewey". These are all works that deserve full attention by students of the Golden Age of American philosophy. For a European, Deledalle has an unusual capacity to detect the vitality and freshness, but also the depth, of the growth of higher education in the U.S. in the first half (...) of this century. At the heart of this growth were philosophical ideas, and in particular those of Dewey. Philosophy did not have then dictatorial or competitive designs regarding education, the social and political sciences, psychology, or the natural sciences. It freely mingled with them, not just imparting methodological or epistemological rigor but also contributing some insights and giving the hypotheses and conclusions in these fields the character of "experiences." Experience is the guiding theme of this rich and complicated work, covering a multitude of subjects and positions. The treatment is divided into six parts dealing respectively with Dewey's leanings toward unitary experience, organic experience, dynamic experience, functional experience, instrumental experience, and transactional experience. In the study of the intellectual of Dewey's life practically all of his production is critically examined by Deledalle: a monumental task in itself, made possible by the critical bibliography of Milton Hasley Thomas. There is enough early biographical detail to make this work an effective and affectionate intellectual portrait. The best pages of this work are devoted to a thorough explication and comparative study of Dewey's final synthesis of experience. There are very helpful comparative references to Marx, Freud, Bergson, and Heidegger, and also indispensable parallels and contrasts with Peirce, James, and Whitehead. This is not a modest contribution from a regional point of view: Deledalle is, perhaps more than anybody else, aware of an ongoing international dialogue on Dewey, a dialogue that is preserving experience as a problem-complex at the front line of contemporary reflection.--A. de L. M. (shrink)
Protosemiotics is the study of the rudiments of semiosis, primarily in nature. The extension of the semiotic field from culture to nature is both necessary and possible in the framework of Peirce's semiotic theory. Against this extension, the critique of pansemiotism has been raised. However, Peirce's semiotics is not pansemiotic since it is based on the criterion of thirdness, which is not ubiquitous in nature. The paper examines the criteria of protosemiosis in the domain of physical and mechanical processes.
The paper sheds light on the concept of model in ordinary language and in scientific discourse from the perspective of C. S. Peirce’s semiotics. It proposes a general Peircean framework for the definition of models of all kinds, including mental models. A survey of definitions of scientific models that have been influential in the philosophy of science and of the typologies proposed in this context is given. The author criticizes the heterogeneity of the criteria applied in these typologies and the (...) lack of a semiotic foundation in typological distinctions between formal, symbolic, theoretical, metaphorical, and iconic models, among others. The paper argues that the application of Peirce’s subdivision of signs into the trichotomies of the sign itself, its object, and its interpretant can offer a deeper understanding of the nature of models. Semiotic topics in the focus of the paper are the distinction between models as signs and models as the interpretants of signs; models considered as a type and models considered as tokens of a type; the iconicity of models, including diagrammatic and metaphorical icons; the contribution of indices and symbols to the informativity of models; and the rhetorical qualities of models in scientific discourse. The paper argues in conclusion that informative models are hybrid signs in which a diagram incorporates indices and symbols in a rhetorically efficient way. (shrink)
Hans Kelsen est, sans conteste, le juriste le plus important de ce siècle. Il n'y a pas une seule question de théorie juridique qu'on puisse traiter aujourd'hui sans examiner d'abord l'analyse qu'il en fait, mais son œuvre ne concerne pas seulement le droit et la philosophie du droit ; elle touche aussi la philosophie politique, l'épistémologie, l'éthique ou la logique. Sa théorie du droit représente, à côté du réalisme, l'une des deux branches du juspositivisme moderne, connue sous le nom de (...) normativisme et que lui-même appelait " Théorie pure du droit ". Elle se donne comme une théorie scientifique qui se borne à décrire son objet, le droit positif, et qui donc est " pure " de tout jugement de valeur. La pureté ne concerne toutefois que la méthodologie. Le droit, lui, n'est nullement pur, car il exprime des choix moraux et politiques. La doctrine kelsenienne pure apparaît ainsi doublement politique : d'une part, elle se donne pour tâche de mettre en évidence la fonction idéologique du droit ; d'autre part, dans la mesure où elle analyse les dispositifs juridiques comme des moyens au service de certaines fins, elle peut servir de fondement à une véritable technologie juridique. C'est cette technologie que Kelsen prétendait appliquer à la politique et qui fonde aussi bien son travail de constituant - il est le père de la Constitution autrichienne et de la première Cour constitutionnelle - que ses écrits sur la démocratie. La Théorie générale du droit et de l'Etat présente à cet égard un intérêt exceptionnel. Elle a été écrite aux Etats-Unis, où Kelsen s'était réfugié au début de la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Comme le souligne Stanley L. Paulson dans son introduction, elle constitue une étape marquante dans l'évolution de sa pensée entre le néokantisme des origines et l'empirisme des derniers écrits. C'est aussi une présentation claire, systématique et concentrée de l'ensemble de sa doctrine et c'est le seul ouvrage de Kelsen qui porte à la fois sur les conditions de possibilité d'une science empirique du droit, sur la théorie générale du droit au sens strict - l'analyse structurale de tous les ordres juridiques possibles - et sur la théorie générale de l'Etat - l'analyse des concepts constitutifs de tout Etat possible. (shrink)
The "semiotic threshold" is U. Eco's metaphor of the borderline between the world of semiosis and the nonsemiotic world and hence also between semiotics and its neighboring disciplines. The paper examines Eco's threshold in comparison to the views of semiosis and semiotics of C. S. Peirce. While Eco follows the structuralist tradition, postulating the conventionality of signs as the main criterion of semiosis, Peirce has a much broader concept of semiosis, which is not restricted to phenomena of culture but includes (...) many processes in nature. Whereas Eco arrives at the conclusion that biological processes, such as the ones within the immune system, cannot be included in the program of semiotic research, Peirce's broader defmition of semiosis has meanwhile become thefoundation of semiotic studies in biology and medicine and hence in biosemiotics and medical semiotics. (shrink)
Robert Stern has argued that Levinas is a kind of command theorist and that, for this reason, Løgstrup can be understood to have provided an argument against Levinas. In this paper, I discuss Levinas’s use of the vocabulary of demand, order, and command in the light of Jewish philosophical accounts of such notions in the work of Martin Buber, Franz Rosenzweig, and Emil Fackenheim. These accounts revise the traditional Jewish idea of command and I show that Levinas’s use of this (...) vocabulary is also revisionary. I show that in light of this tradition of discussion, Levinas’s use is not susceptible to the interpretation Stern proposes and thus that the Løgstrup-style argument cannot be used against Levinas. (shrink)