Medieval Islamic and the "What is X" Question, THERESE-ANNE DRUART
After a brief presentation of what the field covers and its difficulties, the author offers an elementary guide of Arabic philosophy: basic reference books, bibliographies, and main English translations.
The Role of Imagination in Ibn Miskawayh's Theory of Prophecies, ROXANNE MARCOTTE
Ibn Miskawayh's theory of prophecies is greatly philosophical, despite its religious origin. His analysis of prophecy tackles many psychological and epistemological issues which set the stage for the major role played by human faculties. The main faculty involved in prophecies is the imaginative faculty, a point already developed by al-Farabi. Its role is central in Miskawayh's philosophical explanation which incorporates two motifs: the first motif of his theory is inherited from Aristotelian psychology, while the second motif is adopted from the neo-Platonic emanative scheme. These two motifs create a paradoxical situation which finds its way into Miskawayh's philosophical explanation of prophecy. His solution to this problem is none other than to propose an integration of both elements and thus to attempt an integration of both prophetic revelation and philosophical rationalistic principles.
Ibn Sina on the Now: Text and Commentary, JON McGINNIS
Ibn Sina's treatise on the now is philosophically deep analysis of Aristotle's temporal theory. The text is translated and discussed, with particular attention to both its un-Aristotelian and uniquely Avicennian aspects. Among the former is his conception of time as the flow of the now, a view found among Aristotle's later commentators, but absent from Aristotle himself. Ibn Sina's originality emerges most vividly in his solution to Aristotle's paradox (Physics 4.10.218a8-21) against a "flowing" or changing now. Ibn Sina's answer conceives of the now analogously to our contemporary mathematical notion of a limit.
Conjunction and the Identity of Knower and Known in Averroes, DEBORAH BLACK
This paper offers an interpretation of Averroes's account, in his Long Commentary on the De Anima of the traditional doctrine of conjunction with the agent intellect. The author focuses on two aspects of Averroes's text: (1) the role played by the Aristotelian dictum that in any act of cognition the knower and the object known become in some way identified; and (2) Averroes's claim that any adequate account of conjunction requires the acceptance of the unicity of the material intellect. The author concludes that Averroes's theory of conjunction must be interpreted naturalistically, that is, as a function of the agent intellect's standard role as a constituent in all human thought. The price for such a naturalistic interpretation, however, is that Averroes must give up the traditional ethical function assigned to conjunction, since conjunction can no longer be understood as an event in the life of the individual, and by the same token it can have no discernible effect on the mode conscious awareness that is proper to us as individual humans.
Let Them Suffer Into the Truth: Avicenna's Remedy for Those Denying the Axioms of Thought, R. E. HOUSER
Avicenna's advice for dealing with those who are intransigent in denying the principle of non-contradiction, which all humans know, is put them to fire, or beat them, until they are willing to admit that pain is different from non-pain. Such severe treatment may seem too harsh to us. But when Avicenna's advice is seen against the backdrop of his own life and times, his injunction becomes more reasonable, and illustrates some important features of his philosophy. This point in Avicenna's philosophy involves religion and his political life as wazir, as well as his knowledge of Aristotle. The paper falls into four parts: (1) a brief look at Avicenna's life to views; (2) how his treatment of non-contradiction at shifa, Met. 1.8 fits into his presentation of the subject, end, principles, and conclusions of metaphysics; (3) how Avicenna read Aristotle on non-contradiction; (4) Avicenna's argument and conclusion in 1.8, culminating with his severe treatment of the "intransigent." The author's conclusions are: (a) Avicenna's text cannot be read correctly in abstraction from his life. (b) By following al-Farabi on the subject of metaphysics, Avicenna could introduce God as the end of metaphysics and took the title Shifa and his personalist approach to non-contradiction, which focuses on how to treat the sophist and the perplexed from his reading of Aristotle. (c) These are precise categories for Avicenna. The sophist is a political courtier such as Avicenna dealt with in his capacity as wazir. There are two kinds of perplexed: the philosophically perplexed is a confused Neo-Platonist, the religiously perplexed is confused about the conflict between Islam and Greek philosophy. Though Avicenna has felt both kinds of perplexity, the perplexed he has in mind is al-Juzjani, whom the author identifies with the "you" of the text. (d) Avicenna's notion of religious perplexity is the source for Moses Maimonides. (e) Avicenna advocates a two step remedy for sophist and perplexed: first verbal argument, then inflicting pain. Both should be done by the philosopher. (f) It follows from (e) that Avicenna's conception of the philosopher is a modification of Plato's philosopher-king. (g) Co) and (f) do in fact justify Avicenna's harsh treatment of sophist and perplexed.
Al-Ghazali on Created Freedom, DAVID B. BURRELL, C.S.C.
This essay shows how al-Ghazali's Ash'arite view of human freedom represents a bold attempt to carve out space for creaturely freedom in a universe created freely by one God. The elusive notions of kasb and ikisab are exegeted in their proper Islamic context, and on the basis of this analysis contemporary philosophers are urged to reconsider our endemic notions of human freedom as equivalent to choosing. Besides the gain from such comparative analysis, readers are also invited to reflect on the ways in which revelatory contexts have shaped and can continue to shape philosophical reflection about such crucial human issues.
Wandering in the Path of the Averroean System: Is Kant's Doctrine on the Bewubtsein uberhaupt Averroistic? PHILLIPP W. ROSEMANN
Thinkers ranging from Kant's contemporary Herder to the late twentieth-century philosopher Jean-Luc Marion have suggested that here exist similarities between the monopsychism of Averroes and Kant's transcendental idealism. However, the suggested similarities have never been studied in detail. This article is meant to fill this lacuna. It falls into four sections. After an introduction followed by a brief survey of the secondary literature on the topic, it discusses Averroes's theory of the intellect as developed in his Long Commentary on the De Anima, then moving on to an analysis of relevant passages in the Critique of Pure Reason and the Prolegomena. The article concludes that there are indeed a number of striking similarities between Averroes and Kant, especially with regard to their conceptions of the agent intellect and the transcendental self, respectively. In this respect, the step from transcendental idealism to Averroism is a small one. On the other hand, the distinctive feature of Averroes's monopsychism--namely, Averroes's claim that the material intellect is one for all human beings--is difficult to relate to Kant's thought. For what would a "material" or "passive" intellect be for Kant?
AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL QUARTERLY VOL. 36, NO. 2, APRIL 1999
Evil Characters, DANIEL M. HAYBRON
The author examines the psychological traits that can play a constitutive role in having an evil character, using a recent affect-based account by Colin McGinn as the starting point. The author distinguishes several such traits and defends the importance of both affect and action-based approaches. Someone who possesses these characteristics to the greatest possible extent--the purely evil individual--can actually be less depraved than one whose character is not so thoroughly penetrated by such traits. To illustrate the contrast, the author brings up two fictional characters, each of whom exemplifies a different kind of moral extreme: Claggart, from Melville's Billy Budd, and Wilde's Dorian Gray.
Morality, Impartiality, and What We Can Ask of Persons, RICHARD DOUBLE
Although it seems clear that, abstractly speaking, any acceptable theory of moral obligation must be impartial, there are cases in which many persons believe that impartiality is too demanding. Such cases suggest that morality does not require impartiality, a currently fashionable view in philosophical ethics. The author resists that conclusion by providing an alternative account: although moral obligation is impartial, due to our recognition of fundamental human selfishness, there are psychological limits to what most of us believe we can ask of persons. The author argues that this explanation is an improvement over solutions that claim that moral obligation need not be impartial.
AUSTRALASIAN JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 77, No. 1, March 1999
Beyond the Universal Turing Machine, B. JACK COPELAND and RICHARD SYLVAN
We describe an emerging field, that of non-classical computability and non-classical computing machinery. According to the non-classicist, the set of well-defined computations is not exhausted by the computations that can be carried out by a universal Turing machine. We provide an overview of the field and a philosophical defense of its foundations.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
AUSTRALASIAN JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 77, No. 2, June 1999
Speculative Metaphysics and the Future of Philosophy: The Contemporary Relevance of Whitehead's Defence of Speculative Metaphysics, ARRAN E. GARE
While some philosophers and increasing numbers of scientists are striving to revive speculative metaphysics, their efforts are ignored by mainstream philosophers. It is argued that this lack of appreciation stems from the failure to appreciate such work as part of an ongoing tradition, from ignorance of Whitehead's defense of speculative metaphysics against analytic philosophy, and from ignorance of the impact of this defense on the tradition of speculative metaphysics and on science. Whitehead's meta-philosophy is analyzed as a successful refutation of the assumptions on which Russell's early analytic approach to philosophy was based, assumptions which came to inform the whole tradition of analytic philosophy. The paper concludes by indicating the importance of Whitehead's defense of speculative metaphysics not only for philosophy and science, but also for the future of society.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Farewell to States of Affairs, JULIAN DODD
The state of affairs, "A is F," is supposedly, a complex which exists just in case "A has F," and in which A and F are constituents. The author argues that no good reason has yet been given for including states of affairs in our ontology. The author's crucial lemma is that Armstrong's so-called "truth-maker argument" for the existence of states of affairs is unsound. The author gives two reasons for this: the unity of states of affairs is obscure; and, more importantly, the claim that every truth needs a truthmaker has no respectable motivation. The author refutes other putative reasons for positing states of affairs. Sensible realism does not require them; they are not needed to serve as causal relata; and the world possesses enough unity without them.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Begging the Question, WALTER SINNOTT-ARMSTRONG
Arguments are abstract ordered sets of propositions that can be circular, but only concrete uses of arguments can beg the question. This fallacy cannot be captured by any formal, psychological, or objective epistemic approach but only by a subjective epistemic account, on which a use of an argument begs the question if and only if the argument includes a premise that one needs a reason to believe, and one has no such reason that is independent of one's belief in the conclusion and of one's reason to believe the conclusion. One's need for a reason depends on the arguer's purpose (which might be arguer or audience justification) and on the contrast class with respect to which the arguer seeks a reason to believe the conclusion. This account shows why Moore's purported proof of an external world begs the question with respect to some purposes and contrast classes, but not others.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Resolutions, VANYA KOVACH and JOHN FITZPATRICK.
What are resolutions and how do they motivate us? The paper introduces a distinction between two different projects that might be undertaken when a resolution is made; the projects of self control and self transformation. The choice between these projects has implications for the motivational efficacy of resolutions, and these implications are explored in the paper. The authors argue that resolutions can be most usefully characterized in terms of their content, which involves the specification of processes constitutive of the two projects, rather than as particular kinds of mental acts.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
On the Definition of Sexual Harassment, IDDO LANDAU
The article critically examines Jan Crosthwaite and Graham Priest's "The Definition of Sexual Harassment," Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (1996): 66-82. Wishing to emphasize the importance of patriarchy in sexual harassment, Crosthwaite and Priest completely ignore all other factors, thus presenting a reductionist understanding of the phenomenon. This makes their definition, first, too broad; it includes numerous romantic activities which many (including, probably, the authors themselves) would not like to see as sexual harassment. It also makes their definition too narrow, since it excludes women-women, women-men, and almost all men-men sexually aggressive behaviors. A third, even deeper problem is that they define a notion of sexual harassment which has nothing to do with legal and moral considerations. This means that they can make their definition immune to almost any objection by responding that it misses the special notion they are defining; but this also makes their definition unhelpful--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Composition as Identity, Mereological Essentialism, and Counterpart Theory, TRENTON MERRICKS
Some philosophers claim that a composite object "just is" or "is nothing over and above" or "is not distinct from" its parts. One way to understand such claims is as asserting that any composite object O is identical with the objects 01 ... On that are its parts, the objects that compose it. We can call this claim--as does its chief defender David Lewis--"composition as identity." Unless identity is both contingent and relative (in the way noted in the previous section), composition as identity entails mereological essentialism. But many of us reject the contingency or the relativity of identity or both. So we must accept that if composition as identity is true, so is mereological essentialism. But many of us also reject mereological essentialism. So we must, therefore, reject composition as identity.--Correspondence to: Trenton. Merricks@vcu.edu
One Really Big Liquid Sphere: Reply to Lewis, DEAN W. ZIMMERMAN
David Lewis has identified a lacuna in Zimmerman's argument for the incompatibility of the doctrine of temporal parts with the Humean supervenience of the causal relation. In this reply to Lewis, the original argument is rehabilitated, but at some cost.--Correspondence to: dean.w.zimmerman.4@ nd.edu
AUSTRALASIAN JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 77, No. 3, September 1999
Ontology and Realism about Modality, CRAWFORD L. ELDER
A philosopher who thinks substantive necessities obtain in reality, need not believe in non-actual worlds, or maximal consistent sets of propositions, but merely in properties. For most properties, on even the sparsest property realism, are flanked by contraries with which they cannot be co-instantiated. True, Armstrong has shown that the impossibility that a property bearer should bear each of two contraries is sometimes just the impossibility that the bearer should be identical with its own proper part--hence is no substantive impossibility. But for many genuine contraries Armstrong's analysis fails; their incompatibility cannot be reduced to facts of identity. The main examples are dispositional properties, so the paper also argues that being dispositional is no bar to a property's being real in its own right.-Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
An Argument Against Functionalism, HANOCH BEN-YAMI
Functionalists define a mental state as a state that is apt to be the cause of certain effects or apt to be the effect of certain causes (Armstrong). Two tokens of the same belief, however, often cause and are caused by very different events: what makes them beliefs of the same type? It cannot be any resemblance between their causes or effects. Neither can it be that one state could have caused what the other actually caused: we should explain why the state in the counterfactual situation is still the same mental state, and functionalists cannot do that by reference to any physical characteristic, given uncontroversial assumptions about the multiple realizability of the mental. In addition, there are many ways of individuating physical states, and the one relevant for the mental-physical identity should be determined by an independent individuation of mental events. No other answer is open to the functionalist.-Correspondence to: email@example.com
A Note on Global Descriptivism and Putnam's Model-Theoretic Argument, IGOR DOUVEN
According to Putnam's model-theoretic argument, an epistemically ideal theory cannot fail to be true. Lewis contends that all the argument really shows is that an epistemically ideal theory must be true provided a certain theory of reference--which he terms Global Descriptivism--is the whole truth about reference, which he emphatically denies. The paper argues that Lewis grants Putnam too much. However implausible Global Descriptivism may be as a comprehensive account of reference, on what appears to be the only reasonable construal of it Global Descriptivism does not imply that an epistemically ideal theory must be true.--Correspondence to:igor.douven@ phil.uu.nl
Davidsonian Interpretation After Joyce, PETER COOK
The author assesses Davidson's account of interpretation as a response to the problem of linguistic meaning, addressing two areas of doubt raised by Davidson in later work. Firstly, Davidson's own reading of Joyce demonstrates three limits on interpretation announced by Davidson. The author argues that these limits do not prevent Davidson's interpretative theory from showing what it is for Joyce's words to mean what they do. Secondly, Davidson argues that nothing in general can be said about how we come to understand new language. The paper argues that this claim may be hasty, for interpretation of Joyce exhibits a structure that is apparent in the interpretation of new language generally. Davidson describes this structure in discussing figurative language. In doing so, the paper concludes, Davidson tells us more than he perhaps thinks he does, about language use and comprehension.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
There is no "Truthmaker" Argument Against Nominalism, JOSH PARSONS
In his two recent books on ontology, Universals: An Opinionated Introduction, and A World of States of Affairs, David Armstrong gives a new argument against nominalism. That argument seems, on the face of it, to be similar to another argument that he used much earlier against Rylean behaviorism: the truthmaker argument, which stemming from a certain plausible premise, the truthmaker principle. This paper argues that Armstrong's new argument is not logically analogous to the old, and that it is quite possible to be a thoroughgoing or "ostrich" nominalist while holding the truthmaker principle. It also puts forward a general characterization of the principle, as it might be held by such a nominalist.--Correspondence to: josh@ coombs.anu.edu.au
EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 7, No. 1, April 1999
Perception, Introspection, and Attention, JOHANNES ROESLER
What is involved in attending to one's own current perceptual experiences? Two models of introspective attention are contrasted and criticized: the perceptual model, on which introspective attention is a matter of selecting information from internally presented objects, and the intellectual model, which explains introspective attention in terms of the ability to reflect on one's experiences. It is argued that neither model gives an adequate account of introspective knowledge, and, in particular, of what makes introspective judgments rational from the subject's point of view. The central claim of the paper is that to understand a subject's reason for an introspective judgment about her perceptual experience requires understanding the role of deliberate selective attention in perception: introspective knowledge is acquired in the context of attending to activities such as looking or listening.
INTERNATIONAL PHILOSOPHICAL QUARTERLY Vol. 39, No. 1, September 1999
Postmodernism, Derrida, and Differance: A Critique, BRENDAN SWEETMAN
This article provides, through a discussion of the work of Jacques Derrida, an examination of the philosophical basis of postmodernism. Postmodernism is a movement whose central theme is the critique of objective rationality and identity and the working out of the implications of this critique for central questions in philosophy, literature and culture. The first section identifies and explains the positive claims of postmodernism, including the key claim that all identities, presences, and so forth, depend for their existence on something which is absent and different from themselves. The second section further illustrates the positive claims through an analysis of Derrida's "deconstructionist" reading of Plato. The final section raises five critical problems for postmodernism: (i) that it confuses aesthetics with metaphysics; (ii) that it mistakes assertion for argument in philosophy; (iii) that it is guilty of relativism; (iv) that it is self-contradictory; and (v) that it is guilty of intellectual arrogance.--Correspondence to: Sweetman@vaxl.Rockhurst. edu
Friendship: Ancient and Modern, RICHARD J. WHITE
This essay examines the essential differences between ancient and contemporary conceptions of friendship, and considers the ways in which Aristotle's account appears partial and limited when it is referred to as a model for today. At the same time, though, it shows how the Aristotelian account provides us with a critique of contemporary friendship by emphasizing the respect in which friendship must still be viewed as a moral phenomenon and as a source of moral growth. In conclusion, this essay also considers the value and the significance of friendship within the total context of modern life.--Correspondence to: email@example.com.
Number and Infinity: Thomas and Cantor, ADAM DROZDEK
The paper discusses the problem of whether and to what extent infinity can be found in creation and how it can be reconciled with the view of God's omnipotence. Infinity is a mark of divinity, thus imbuing the world with infinity could be equated with allotting to the world some measure of divinity. First, views of Thomas Aquinas are presented. Most of Thomas's arguments against infinity hinge upon the concept of number. Therefore, later modifications of his views go in the direction of redefining the concept of number, or redefining the concept of infinity, or both. The paper presents some of these modifications, especially those made by the founder of modern set theory, Georg Cantor.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Technology and Human Dignity, LOUK FLEISCHHACKER
Research trying to clarify social interaction processes accompanying the development of technology tends to neglect the question what is specific for technology, or to assume tacitly a dogmatic answer to it. Philosophy investigates such answers critically and tries to find a well-balanced synthesis. It is the task of philosophy of technology to investigate the implications of such a hypothetical synthesis for the assessment of our technological culture. This paper gives an example of such an approach. It formulates the hypothesis that technology is essentially a perspective, characterized by the ideal of useful construction. One of the conclusions drawn from this hypothesis is that instrumentality is not typical for technology. Technology is driven by spiritual passion rather than by instrumental value. The bugbear of technology as a moloch eating up humanity is fundamentally mistaken. It arises from mixing up technology as such with the industrial phase of its development.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
The Problem of `Inverse Correspondence' in the Philosophy of Nishida, MASAO ABE; trans. JAMES FREDERICKS
The author concentrates on technical problems within the philosophy of Nishida. Kitaro Nishida (d. 1945), one of the founding philosophers of the Kyoto School--the first indigenously Japanese philosophy. Along with his younger associate, Hajime Tanabe, Nishida articulated a metaphysics that reflects the aesthetic, religious and ethical traditions of Japan, but from a standpoint critically engaged with western philosophical thought. Nishida's philosophy is thus a particularly important instance of a modern but nonwestern metaphysics. Nishida's philosophy, reflecting the Mahayana Buddhist notion of emptiness, criticizes the western notion of Being with the notion of Absolute Nothingness and the western logical principle of non-contradiction with a logic of contradictory self-identity. The principle of inverse correspondence is a logical principle for understanding the relationship between the relative and the absolute as they arise mutually within Absolute Nothingness. In his commentary on Nishida, the author explores the notion of inverse correspondence as a basis for a philosophy of religion and for understanding the complex relationship between Nishida and Tanabe.
JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 36, No. 4, October 1998
Averroes on Psychology and the Principles of Metaphysics, RICHARD C. TAYLOR
This article explains how it is that Averroes can assert in his Long Commentary on the De Anima and in his Long Commentary on the Metaphysics that principles of the science of metaphysics are established in the science of Psychology. In psychology human intellectual understanding is found to require the separate agent intellect for the coming to be of knowledge. On the basis of the analysis of human psychology it is established that intellect must exist and that this intellect must be separate from the human being in existence. Moreover, it is also established that there exists potency in those things called intellect, thanks to the argument for the existence of the material intellect. These key contributions from psychology to the principles of the science of Metaphysics were explicitly recognized by Averroes in book Lam of his Commentary on the Metaphysics of Aristotle.--Correspondence to: TaylorR@vms.csd.mu.edu
The Ontological Status of Malebranchean Ideas, MONTE COOK
Despite the importance of ideas to Malebranche's theory of vision in God, Malebranche seems to leave no metaphysical place for them. He seems to hold three jointly inconsistent positions--that everything is either a substance or a modification of a substance, that ideas are not substances, and that ideas are not modifications. This paper argues that Malebranche can and does consistently hold all three positions. He escapes inconsistency by maintaining that although ideas are not different substances, they do fit into the category of substance. Rather than being substances (plural), they are identical with one substance, God.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hume's Sceptical Standard of Taste, JONATHAN FRIDAY
The author examines, "Of the Standard of Taste" and seeks to identify which of the various standards Hume discusses constitutes his final position. Hume's argumentative strategy and purpose, as well as the historical context to the argument, provide the keys to the analysis. At the heart of Hume's essay is a contrast between rule- and decision-based critical theories, the relative merits of which provided a lively topic of discussion in the early modern period. This context and a careful consideration of Hume's arguments reveal him to be seeking a common-sense balance between these two positions. Hume's consideration of a rule standard that opposes skepticism and a decision standard that merely "modifies and restrains" it can be traced to a skeptical agreement-based standard, but one which nonetheless provides something of a working standard of taste.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
The Context of Wittgenstein's Philosophy of Action, MICHAEL SCOTT
This article discusses the historical and theoretical background of Wittgenstein's writings and research on action and the will. Against the widely held view that William James' ideo-motor theory is the main target of Wittgenstein's remarks, it is argued that Wittgenstein is responding not only James but also to the theories and arguments adduced by late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century psychologists on the nature of the will. Specifically, Wittgenstein was familiar with the on-going debate between ideo-motor theorists and innervation theorists concerning the psychic antecedents of voluntary action. Evidence for this contention is drawn from Wittgenstein's Nachlass, lectures and biography. In the latter part of the paper Wittgenstein's remarks on action in Philosophical Investigations and elsewhere are put into context and clarified. The source for Wittgenstein's finger-crossing and mirror writing experiments is identified.
JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 37, No. 1, January 1999
On Substance Being the Same As Its Essence In Metaphysics Z 8: The Pale Man Argument, NORMAN O. DAHL
This paper supports the view that Aristotle's claim at the beginning of Metaphysics Z 6 that a pale man is not the same as his essence provides grounds for taking the sameness relation that Aristotle argues in Z 6 holds between substances and their essences not to be identity, but a weaker relation that can stand between a particular substance and its universal essence. It offers two lines of support for this conclusion. The first stems from a solution to the main problem that surrounds this part of Z 6, that the only arguments Aristotle offers in support of his claim that a pale man is not the same as his essence are ones he recognizes are fallacious. The second rests on what one should take as the Greek text of this part of Z 6.
Hebdomads: Boethius Meets the Neopythagoreans, SARAH PESSIN
The thesis put forth in this paper is three-fold. First, the paper establishes, un-controversially, that Boethius was in many ways influenced by Neo-Pythagorean ideas. Second, the author recommends, contrary to the extant scholarship on the issue, that we understand Boethius' esoteric reference to the hebdomads at the outset of his treatise, the Quomodo Substantiae (often called the De Hebdomadibus), as a reference to something neoPythagorean. This is suggested in light of the fact that, as the paper explains, the hebdomad plays an important role within the neo-Pythagorean literature of Nicomachus of Gerasa, a thinker with whose writings Boethius was intimately familiar, and to whose works Boethius is often indebted. Lastly, following Dillon's analysis of the Triad and the Hebdomad within Nicomachus' works, the author presents an expanded interpretation of the hebdomad within the neo-Pythagorean corpus which, if correct, would make appropriate Boethius' referring to it as he does at the outset of a treatise on the nature of God and creation.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Coherence of a Mind: John Locke and the Law of Nature, ALEX TUCKNESS
Locke's theory of natural law is more coherent than many commentators admit. This article addresses many of the perennial problems surrounding Locke's theory of natural law, including the grounds of natural law, the accessibility of natural law through reason alone, and the lack of certainty about sanctions in the next life. It argues that Locke was a voluntarist with respect to the ground of natural law who also believed the content of that law was necessarily rational. It claims that Locke distinguished between the core and periphery of natural law, believing the former to be readily accessible through reason alone. It also contends that Locke thought that merely probable sanctions in the next life could still provide a sufficient motive for a hedonist to obey natural law. These considerations also shed light on the reasons why the Two Treatises do not contain a more detailed discussion of natural law.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Anthropology from a Metaphysical Point of View, JEANINE M. GRENBERG
It is often argued that Kant's moral theory requires excising any role for feeling in moral action. Even commentators sympathetic to some inclusion of feeling maintain that motivation to moral action cannot involve feeling. In this article, I clear the way for an understanding of Kant's theory which does allow a motivational role for feeling in moral action. I first discuss commentators who argue that what Kant calls the moral feeling of respect can play no motivational role in moral action. I focus in particular on Andrews Reath who argues that Kant is forced to such a position because of his rejection of moral sense theory. After rejecting this argument, I consider and reject the more general challenge that allowing a role for the influence of feeling on the faculty of desire undermines Kant's metaphysical commitment to a morality free from anthropological considerations. Finding a negative response to both these claims opens the space for recognizing the possibility of admitting an influence of feeling in moral motivation. I conclude by providing an overview of Kant's discussion of the moral feeling of respect which shows this feeling to meet the criteria he sets for inclusion in moral motivation. Kant's concern for clarifying the ways in which the moral feeling of respect can assist in motivation to moral action will be seen as one aspect of what I call Kant's "anthropology from a metaphysical point of view."
Selves and Personal Existence in the Existentialist Tradition, JAMES O. BENNETT
This paper examines the status of the self within the existentialist tradition, with summaries of the views of Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Jaspers, Ortega y Gasset, Marcel, Heidegger, Sartre, and Merleau-Ponty. The conclusion is that existentialists typically reject entity-based conceptions of personal existence (involving selves, souls, or egos), but offer rich process-oriented views. Other issues are addressed, including whether there is significant divergence on this matter between the so-called phenomenological existentialists and the others. (I argue there is not, and that the contrary view rests largely on ideas in the early Sartre, which he later repudiated.) The paper ends with consideration of Nietzsche's views, focusing on a systematic ambiguity in statements such as, "there is no inner self that thinks, wills, and chooses." Do such statements mean only that it is physical, publicly-accessible persons who perform such activities, or that no such activities are possible?--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 96, No. 2, February 1999
Second-hand Moral Knowledge, KAREN JONES
The article defends the importance of testimony as a source of moral knowledge: given that the world of value is complex and that our moral understanding is shaped by our experiences, even the morally mature will need to rely on the moral insight of others. It might be objected that such trust in the word of others is not needed because we adopt moral views for reasons and the cogency of those reasons can be assessed by each of us. Further, it might be objected that borrowing moral knowledge overlooks the importance of moral judgments, fails to recognize their practicality, and is incompatible with autonomy. The article respond to each of these objections.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
JOURNAL OF PHILOSOPHY Vol. 96, No. 3, March 1999
Of Conspiracy Theories, BRIAN L. KEEPLEY
As the end of the Millennium approaches, conspiracy theories are increasing in number and popularity. This paper offers an analysis of conspiracy theories inspired by Hume's discussion of miracles. It is argued that whereas Hume can argue that miracles are, by definition, explanations we are not warranted in believing, there is nothing analytic that allows us to distinguish good from bad conspiracy theories. There is no a priori method for distinguishing warranted conspiracy theories (say, those explaining Watergate) from those which are unwarranted (say, theories about extra-terrestrials abducting humans). Nonetheless, there is a cluster of characteristics of_ ten shared by unwarranted conspiracy theories. An analysis of the alleged explanatory virtues of unwarranted conspiracies suggests some reasons for their current popularity, while at the same time providing grounds for their rejection. The paper concludes with a discussion of how conspiracy theories embody an anachronistic world-view that places the contemporary zeitgeist in a clearer light.
PHILOSOPHY Vol. 74, No. 288, April 1999
All Else Being Equal, PETER LIPTON
Most laws are ceteris paribus (cp) laws: they say not that all "F's are G" but only that "All F's are G" all else being equal. Most philosophical accounts of laws, however, have focused on strict laws. This paper considers how some of the standard philosophical problems about laws change when we switch attention from strict to cp laws and what special problems these laws raise. It is argued that some cp laws do not simply reflect the complexity of the world and the limitations of our minds. Correctly interpreted, they reveal the simplicity that underlies the complexity, a simplicity that it is without our cognitive powers to grasp.--Correspondence to: Peter.Lipton@kings.cam.ac.uk
Did the Greeks Discover the Irrationals? PHILIP HUGLY and CHARLES SAYWARD
A popular view is that the great discovery of Pythagoreans was that there are irrational numbers, for example, the positive square root of two. Against this the article argues that mathematics and geometry, together with their applications, do not show that there are irrational numbers or compel assent to that proposition.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Back to the Present, THOMAS BALDWIN
McTaggart's famous regress argument against the reality of tenses is undermined when one takes due account of McTaggart's own relational conception of tense. But this new conception gives rise to a new difficulty concerning change of tense whose resolution requires the thesis that events are tensed or tenseless only under a description. From this perspective the issue of the reality of tense is transformed into one concerning the rigidity of tensed and tenseless descriptions. It turns out that tense is, in this way, unreal, and thus that metaphysical priority belongs to tenseless conceptions of time. But, equally, there is an opposite epistemological priority for tense, in that one cannot be a rational thinker at all without the capacity for tensed thoughts.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
A Prolegomenon to an Identity Theory of Truth, STEWART CANDLISH
Identity theories of truth, according to which a proposition's being true is its being identical with the reality it is about, occupy a small and largely unnoticed place in the history of philosophy, and are now rarely taken seriously. The aim of this paper is to draw attention to both current and older variants, and, by considering the most fundamental and obvious objections to them, to see whether there is room for an identity theory in what one might call the epistemic space of candidate theories: that is, whether there is a form of the theory which can escape those objections and thereby become at least an initially plausible candidate for an account of truth.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nagel's Challenge and the Mind-Body Problem, ROM HARRE
Given that the phenomena of subjective experience and the physical states of the human organism cannot both be described within either materialist or mentalistic theories, Nagel has challenged the philosophical community to present a new ontology in which both can be described in such a way that neither is reduced to the other. Taking the challenge at the coarse grained level of brains and minds a candidate ontology can be created that meets Nagel's challenge on the basis of the metaphor of task (mentalistically described) and tool, (materially described) necessarily linked in that a tool is defined as the implement for this task. Taking the challenge at the fine grain level of mental and material states an ontology can be created to meet the challenge by generalizing the notion of affordances, so that whatever affords a mental state to proprioception affords a material state to perception. There is no causal relation between the mental and the material state. This has an exact analogue in Bohr's philosophy of physics, where complementary phenomena are afforded by complementary apparatus. This move by-passes the traditional formulation of the mind-body impasse in terms of mutual causality.
PHILOSOPHICAL QUARTERLY Vol. 49, No. 194, January 1999
Expressions and their Representations, ZOLT SZAB
It is plausible to think that our knowledge of linguistic types can be justified by what we know about the tokens of these types. But one then has to explain what it is about the relation a type bears to its tokens that makes possible the move from knowledge of the concrete to knowledge of the abstract. I argue that the standard solution to this difficulty, that the relevant relation is instantiation and that the transition is inductive generalization, is inadequate. I propose an alternative, according to which tokens are representations of the type they belong to. I also defend this view against the charge that it cannot account for the systematic ambiguity of expressions like "word" or "sentence," and the objection that it leads to an implausible form of Platonism.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Physicalism, Teleology, and the Miraculous Coincidence Problem, JONATHAN KNOWLES
I focus on Fodor's model of the relationship between special sciences and basic physics, and on a criticism of this model, that it implies that the causal stability of, for example, the mental in its production of behaviour is nothing short of a miraculous coincidence. David Papineau and Graham Macdonald endorse this criticism. But it is far less clear than they assume that Fodor's picture indeed involves coincidences, which in any case their injection of a teleological supplement cannot explain. Papineau's and Macdonald's problem is subtly different from a similar one presented by Adrian Cussins. This is no more effective against Fodor's picture, but the kind of account of the relation between the physical and the psychological which could constitute a solution to Cussins' problem is one which, for independent reasons, a physicalist of Fodor's stripe ought to provide.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Search for Ontological Emergence, MICHAEL SILBERSTEIN and JOHN McGEEVER
We survey and clarify some recent appearances of the term emergence. We distinguish epistemological emergence, which is merely a limitation of descriptive apparatus, from ontological emergence, which should involve causal features of a whole system not reducible to the properties of its parts, thus implying the failure of part/whole reductionism and of mereological supervenience for that system. Are there actually any plausible cases of the latter among the numerous and various mentions of emergence in the recent literature? Quantum mechanics seems to offer one, in the Bell properties of entangled particles, but other apparently promising candidates, such as nonlinear dynamical systems investigated by complexity studies and chaos theory, seem on careful analysis to display only epistemological emergence. We examine the consequences for physicalism of admitting ontological emergence in the micro-physical.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Between Internalism and Externalism in Ethics, EVAN SIMPSON
If internalism in ethics is correct, then moral beliefs necessarily motivate. Externalism rejects this thesis, holding that the relationship between beliefs and motives is only contingent. The position I develop is that both views are false. By defining a logical relationship between moral beliefs and motives that is weaker than logical necessitation, it is possible to maintain (contrary to internalism) that beliefs may occur without motives, but (contrary to externalism) that they cannot always do so. The logical point is explicated through a psychological interpretation of moral emotions that gives their constituent beliefs an inherent link to action, together with a semantic characterization of moral concepts that ties their competent use to familiarity with these emotions.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW Vol. 107, No. 4, October 1998
How Parmenides Saved the Theory of Forms, SAMUEL C. RICKLESS
In part 1 of Plato's Parmenides, Socrates appeals to Plato's Middle Period Theory of Forms (MPTF) in order to rebut an argument of Zeno's to the paradoxical conclusion that things are not many. Among the axioms of MPTF is the thesis (call it "RP," for "Radical Purity") that no Form can have contrary properties. Parmenides then argues that every plausible version of MPTF is inconsistent. In part 2, Parmenides argues that the One is riddled with contrary properties, and hence that RP is false. By the end of the dialogue, Socrates (and we) should be able to see that RP should be rejected, and that the result of removing RP from MPTF is a Theory of Forms that can meet four of the five main challenges raised by Parmenides in part 1.--Correspondence to: email@example.com.
Understanding Belief Reports, DAVID BRAUN
According to neo-Russellian theories of attitude ascriptions, the following sentences express the same proposition and so must have the same truth value: (1) Hammurabi believes that Hesperus is visible in the evening, and (2) Hammurabi believes that Phosphorus is visible in the evening. This consequence is counterintuitive; neo-Russellians are obligated to explain away this intuition. The most famous advocates of neo-Russellianism, Nathan Salmon and Scott Soames, claim that the anti-Russellian intuition is due to speakers' confusion between the proposition semantically expressed by (1) and (2), and the propositions that; they pragmatically convey. This paper attempts to explain the intuition without appeal to pragmatics. It relies instead on the characteristically neo-Russellian idea that the single proposition expressed by (1) and (2) may be believed in different ways.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW Vol. 108, No. 1, January 1999
The Disunity of Color, MOHAN MATTHEN
Color is not adequately understood by generalizing from features of human experience. This is so because we have access to only one kind of color experience, and there are many. The first half of this paper argues in support of four counter-anthropocentric propositions, which together imply that there is neither an experienced nor a natural unity that determines the extension of the class to which red, blue, green, and so on belong. Color properties form a heterogeneous collection. The second half attempts to construct a conception of color congruent with the facts of evolution and the variability of color vision across animal species. Color vision is to be defined not in terms of the experiences, perceptual discriminations, or concepts that it makes available to organisms, but by reference to the information it receives as input. This thesis allows us to reformulate color-realism in a helpful way.
Concept Analysis, Dualism, and the Explanatory, NED BLOCK and ROBERT STALNAKER
PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW Vol. 108, No. 2, April 1999
Moral Cognitivism and Motivation, SIGRON SVAVARSDOTTIR
The main argument of the article undermines the internalist constraint on accounts of moral judgments: roughly, the constraint that an adequate account of moral judgments must imply that anyone who makes a moral judgment is appropriately motivated. A subsidiary argument traces the pervasive appeal of internalism to an intuition pertaining to our concept of commitment: an intuition which does not on its own support internalism. The article also responds to the inverted commas strategy for discounting the externalist intuition and to Michael Smith's recent argument against externalism. The critical discussion of Smith serves to demonstrate that a plausible depiction of moral psychology emerges from the view that moral judgments motivate in collaboration with a conative attitude taken towards an object under a moral mode of presentation. Variations in moral motivation, the article argues, support that view.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
The Cartesian Circle, DUGALD MURDOCH
The author attempts to defend Descartes against the charge of arguing in a circle in Meditation Three. When attention is paid to Descartes's analytical method in the Meditations and to the order in which he presents his arguments, he can be seen not to be guilty of the charge, even when Cartesian doubt is interpreted in the most radical way. In the course of arguing for this thesis, the author discusses Descartes's conception of doubt and his conception of truth.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Leibniz on Freedom and Necessity: A Critical Notice of Robert Adams, ROBERT SLEIGH
PHILOSOPHICAL REVIEW Vol. 108, No. 3, July 1999
Leibniz on God's Knowledge of Counterfactuals, MICHAEL V. GRIFFIN
In the Theodicy, Leibniz explains God's knowledge of counterfactuals by appeal to a familiar-sounding theory of possible worlds. Elsewhere, however, he argues that God knows counterfactuals about creatures by knowing what he would have decreed in the relevant counterfactual circumstances. These views are two aspects of the same complex position. According to Leibniz, God does not make isolated decrees concerning particular (nonmaximal) states of affairs, rather he decides everything all at once by choosing among infinitely many possible worlds. Moreover, according to Leibniz, God always chooses the best. These considerations yield the following Leibnizian analysis for counterfactuals about creatures: counterfactual is true just in case the consequent is true in the best possible world in which the antecedent is true. What grounds this analysis is the fact that God would have chosen the best world, were he to choose among the worlds in which the counterfactual's antecedent is true.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
Kant on Self-Consciousness, PATRICIA KITCHER
Kant's claim that cognition involves self-consciousness has struck many as obviously false. This paper tries to determine what Kant meant by self-consciousness. To do so the author considers the available meanings of consciousness. With Kant's sense of self-consciousness in hand, the author presents explicit versions of three of Kantian arguments for the necessity of self-consciousness, arguments concerning spatial perception, recognition in a concept, and objective judgment. The central contention is that Kant's doctrine of serf-consciousness is a virtual consequence of his signature doctrine that the mind constructs cognition. The last section tries to provide some sense of the significance of Kant's results by relating his unusual notion of self-consciousness to more familiar notions.--Correspondence to: pk206@ columbia.edu.
Disappointment, Sadness, and Death, KAI DRAPER
PHILOSOPHY AND PHENOMENOLOGICAL RESEARCH Vol. 59, No. 1, January 1999
Degrees of Freedom: An Essay on Competitions between Micro and Macro in Mechanics, MARIAM THALOS
This paper argues that the doctrines of determinism and supervenience, while logically independent, are importantly linked in physical mechanics--and quite interestingly so. For it is possible to formulate classical mechanics in such a way as to take advantage of the existence of mathematical devices that represent the advance of time and which are such as to inspire confidence in the truth of determinism--in order to prevent violation of supervenience. It is also possible to formulate classical mechanics--and to do so in an observationally equivalent, and thus equally empirically respectable, way--such that violations of supervenience are (on the one hand) routine, and (on the other hand) necessary for achieving complete descriptions of the motions of mechanical systems--necessary, therefore, for achieving a deterministic mechanical theory. Two such formulations--only one of which preserves supervenience universally--will conceive of mechanical law in quite different ways. Furthermore, they will not admit of being extended to treat thermodynamical questions in the same way. Thus we will find that supervenience is a contingent matter, in the following rather surprising and philosophically interesting way: we cannot in mechanics separate our decisions to conceive of physical law in certain ways from our decisions to treat macroscopic quantities in certain ways.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Zombie Attack on the Computational Conception of Mind, SELMER BRINGSJORD
Is it true that if zombies--creatures who are behaviorally indistinguishable from us, but no more conscious than a rock--are logically possible, the computational conception of mind is false? Are zombies logically possible? Are they physically possible? This paper is a careful, sustained argument for affirmative answers to these three questions.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
William James and the Willfulness of Belief, RICHARD M. GALE
It was important to James's philosophy, especially his doctrine of the will to believe, that we could believe at will. Toward this end he argues in The Principles of Psychology that attending to an idea is identical with believing it, which, in turn, is identical with willing that it be realized. Since willing is identical with believing and willing is an intentional action, it follows by Leibniz's Law that believing also is an intentional action. This paper explores the problems with James's thesis that attending will belief An attempt is made to show that it has a salvageable core that is of considerable philosophical interest and importance.
Seeing Sequences, DAVID GALLOWAY
This article discusses Charles Parsons' conception of mathematical intuition. Intuition, for Parsons, involves seeing-as: in seeing the sequences ||| and ||| as the same type, one intuits the type. The type is abstract, but intuiting the type is supposed to be epistemically analogous to ordinary perception of physical objects. And some non-trivial mathematical knowledge is supposed to be intuitable in this way, again in a way analogous to ordinary perceptual knowledge. In particular, the successor axioms are supposed to be knowable intuitively. This conception has the resources to respond to some familiar objections to mathematical intuition. But the analogy to ordinary perception is weaker than it looks, and the warrant provided for non-trivial mathematical beliefs by intuition of this sort is weak--too weak, perhaps, to yield any mathematical knowledge.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The A Priori Rules of Rationality, RALPH WEDGWOOD
Both these ideas are intuitively plausible: rationality has an external aim, such as forming a true belief or good decision; and the rationality of a belief or decision is determined purely by facts about the thinker's internal mental states. Unlike earlier conceptions, the conception of rationality presented here explains why these ideas are both true. Rational beliefs and decisions, it is argued, are those that are formed through the thinker's following "rules of rationality." Some rules count as rules of rationality because it is rational to believe--through following other rules--that those rules are reliable. But there must also be certain basic rules, which are a priori, or "built into" our basic cognitive capacities. That these rules are a priori is a purely internal matter; and in following these rules the thinker has done all that could reasonably be expected to achieve the external aim of forming a true belief or good decision.
Berkeley and Scepticism, GEORGE PAPPAS
In both the Principles and the Three Dialogues, Berkeley claims that he wants to uncover those principles which lead to skepticism; to refute those principles; and to refute skepticism itself. This paper examines the principles Berkeley says have skeptical consequences, and contends that only one of them implies skepticism. It is also argued that Berkeley's attempted refutation of skepticism rests not on his acceptance of the esse est percipi principle, but rather on the thesis that physical objects and their sensible qualities are immediately perceived.--Correspondence to: email@example.com
RATIO Vol. 12, No. 2, 1999
Plural Reference, J. R. CAMERON
A plural referring expression, the (or Jack and Jill) may be used to refer either distributively, saying something about each F individually, or collectively, to the F's taken as a single totality. Predicate logic has to analyze both uses in terms of singular reference, treating them quite differently; but we regard such expressions as functioning in basically the same way in either use. Our understanding is vindicated if we recognize that a plural referring expression picks out neither an aggregate simpliciter nor a set, but a pluralityan aggregate taken relative to a principle for individuating its constituents; this admits of being seen either as many things or as one. What is being said about the plurality indicates whether the reference is distributive, collective, or a combination of these. Augmenting predicate logic to accommodate the distinctive inference-pattern associated with distributive plural reference is simple, and necessary, to cope with cases in which distributive and collective reference are essentially combined.--Correspondence to: j.r.cameron@abdn. ac.uk.
Justification and Relative Apriority, HEIMIR GEIRSSON
There is tension between any view which claims that the object denoted is all that names and simple referring terms contribute to propositions expressed by sentences in which they appear, and the apparent a posteriority of identity statements containing different but codesignative names. Frege solved the tension by adopting a description theory of names. The direct designation theorist cannot do the same. Instead, he has to provide one of two solutions; (a) argue that although Hesperus is Hesperus and Hesperus is Phosphorus express the same proposition their epistemic status differs such that one's justification of the proposition expressed by only the former is a priori, or (b) argue that both Hesperus is Hesperus and Hesperus is Phosphorus express a priori truths. The author argues for a version of option (a), and that while co-referential names can be freely substituted in simple belief contexts, they cannot be freely substituted in contexts involving justification.--Correspondence to: firstname.lastname@example.org
On the Value and Scope of Freedom, MARK LEON
We have a practical, not merely theoretical interest in freedom. The question that is considered in this paper, is what it is that we value about freedom. It is proposed that what we value is being able to get what we most want (or value), because that is what most want (or value). This account is compatible with determinism. Certain accounts opposed to determinism are considered and rejected. On these accounts freedom requires either a particular sort of indeterminism, or requires a special form of causation, agent-causation, or requires that the agent be a certain sort of self-constituting entity. It is argued that even if these accounts were less metaphysically problematic than they are, they would not give us a 'freedom' that we would value, nor would they secure conditions under which an action would be praiseworthy, or blameworthy. It is also argued, that a certain sort of capacity to control ourselves is not a precondition for freedom, though such a capacity would add to the scope of our freedom.--Correspondence to: email@example.com. ac.za
Equality, Priority and Social Justice, RICHARD NORMAN
The moral principle of giving priority to benefiting the less well off has been thought by some to share the plausibility of egalitarianism whilst avoiding the less plausible implications of the latter. This paper argues that the priority principle does have an authentic place in our moral thinking, and that it is distinct from the idea of equality, but that the latter also has an indispensable role to play. The idea of priority has its place as the expression of the moral standpoint of benevolent and sympathetic concern. Equality, in contrast, functions as a conception of social justice, from which it cannot be displaced by the idea of priority.--Correspondence to: R.J. Norman@ukc.ac.uk