• Parfit’s ‘Triple Theory’ and its Troubles

      McNaughton, David; Rawling, Piers; Florida State University (2014-01-01)
    • Patient Morality: Compliance, Perserverance and Other Athletic Virtues

      Ruddick, William; New York University (1983-01-01)
    • Philosophical Theories of Human Nature

      Sparshott, Francis; University of Toronto (1988-01-01)
    • Philosophy and Exploration of the Solar System

      Munevar, Gonzalo; Evergreen State College (1998-01-01)
      The search for extra terrestrial intelligence (SETI) raises several questions in the philosophy of science, especially in relation to artificial intelligence and biology. This paper explores these questions.
    • Philosophy and the Curriculum

      Scheffler, Israel; Harvard University (1971-01-01)
      There are many ways in which philosophy can contribute to the improvement of education. This paper proposes one particular contribution. Those who are studying to be teachers should be taught some of the philosophy that is related to the discipline that they will teach. There are four ways in which this can contribute to their education. First, it will give an analytical description of the forms of thought employed in their discipline. Second, it will provide some evaluation and criticism of those same forms of thought. Third, it will analyze some specific materials in such a way as to systematize them and illustrate these forms of thought. Fourth, it will provide an interpretation of these forms of thought that is accessible to the novice.
    • Philosophy of Perception and the Phenomenology of Visual Space

      Hatfield, Gary; University of Pennsylvania (2011-01-01)
      My aim in this paper is to consider various forms of perceptual realism, including, for purposes of comparison, the largely abandoned indirect or representative realism. After surveying the variety of perceptual realisms and considering their various commitments, I introduce some considerations concerning the phenomenology of visual space that cause trouble for most forms of direct realism. These considerations pertain to the perception of objects in the distance and, secondarily, to the perception of shapes at a slant. I argue that one of the lesser known varieties of perceptual realism, critical direct realism, can meet the challenges offered by the facts of spatial perception.
    • Polar Terms and Interdependent Concepts

      Singer, Marcus G. (1990-01-01)
      The notion of polarity, of polar terms and concepts, has been extensively used in the history of philosophy. However, there has never been a careful analysis or elucidation of the very concept of polarity itself. This paper aims to provide just such an elucidation of the concept of polarity.
    • Political Responsibility and Resistance to Civil Government

      Lyons, David; Boston Univeristy School of Law (1996-01-01)
      This paper has two aims. One is to gain a clearer view of Thoreau’s ideas about political responsibility, especially what I shall call individual accountability, or the duty to address political wrongs; for I believe that the common understanding of Thoreau’s position is inaccurate. Another aim is to suggest and to encourage discussion of a broader conception of political responsibility – a conception capable of supporting a duty of disobedience in view of social wrongs.
    • Pragmatism in Philosophy: The Hidden Alternative

      Blackburn, Simon; University of North Carolina (2011-09-01)
      This paper contrasts two ways of understanding the function of human thought and language. According to representationalism, the function of thought and language is to refer to entities in the world and assert truths about them. By contrast, pragmatism seeks to understand the function of thought and language without any such appeal, at the most fundamental level, to the concepts of truth or reference.
    • Predictability and Explanation in the Social Sciences

      MacIntyre, Alasdair; Brandeis University (1972-01-01)
      Scientific explanation requires a certain type of predictability. The particulars that are studied by the social sciences do not possess that kind of predictability. Therefore the aspiration to construct scientific explanations in the social sciences is bound to fail.
    • Preemption, Prevention and Predation: Why the Bush Strategy is Dangerous

      Shue, Henry; Oxford University (2005-12-01)
      In September of 2002, the administration of President George W. Bush announced its policy of preemption. This policy is actually equivalent to a policy of preventive war. The principal difficulty with this policy is that it will incite fear in governments who would not otherwise attack us, and thereby incite them to hostile action. Thus the policy actually makes the world a more dangerous place.
    • Preference by Race is Neither Just Nor Wise

      Cohen, Carl; University of Michigan - Ann Arbor (1998-01-01)
      This paper argues that preference by race is neither just nor wise. The paper argues that, as it was originally intended, the policy of affirmative action does not involve preference by race, nor is such a system justified.
    • Professor Ayer’s Honest Ghost

      Hartnack, Justus; The College at Brockport (1970-01-01)
      Professor Ayer is right that Ryle’s strongest thesis is incorrect. However, I do not agree with all of Ayer’s arguments for that conclusion. I also wish that Professor Ayer had examined some other mental concepts, which also seem to resist any kind of behaviorist reduction.
    • Quine's Concept of Stimulus Meaning

      Vuillement, Jules; College de France (1974-01-01)
    • Radical Philosophy and Critical Theory: Examination and Defense

      Nielsen, Kai; Oxford University (1975-01-01)
    • Re-Humanizing Descartes

      Simmons, Alison; Harvard University (2011-07-31)
      Descartes’ mind-body dualism and his quest for objective knowledge can appear de-humanizing. My aim in this paper is to re-humanize Descartes. When we take a closer look at what Descartes actually says about human beings, it casts his entire thought in a much different light.
    • Records and the Man

      Weiss, Paul; Catholic University of America (1972-01-01)
      Athletic records are cherished because of their assumed impartiality and objectivity. However, athletic records do not fully and accurately describe the events that they purport to describe. That is because athletic records do not take account of the myriad factors that influence the outcome of any athletic event. Contingency, novelty, luck, obstacles and opportunities all make a difference to what is achieved. Since records abstract from all of these, they do not tell us what did occur, but only the outcome of a multitude of factors of which we take no notice. The singular goal of an athlete is to make maximal use of his body to attain an outstanding result in the particular situation in which he finds himself.
    • Rejoiner to Professor Freeman

      Greenstein, Harold; The College at Brockport (1972-01-01)
      I agree with Professor Freeman that critical realism is the right solution to the problem concerning the relationship between perception and reality. I also agree that critical realism is a metaphysical theory in certain respects. However, I disagree with his assertion that critical realism can be affirmed only as an article of metaphysical faith. Any claim to prove something is an empirical claim, and it can be tested like any other empirical claim.
    • Religion and Belief

      Keene, J. Calvin; St. Lawrence University (1971-01-01)
      I agree with Dr. Blanshard that religion needs reason, and belief should be made as rational as possible. It is an ethical responsibility to believe the truth. But belief always includes an element of tentativeness. So belief is sometimes appropriate, even in the absence of compelling evidence. Moreover, religion is related to a very different reality than is science. Consequently, the kinds of evidence that are appropriate to the one are not necessarily appropriate to the other. Insofar as God is conceived as a person, rather than an impersonal object, God cannot be approached or studied in the way in which we study impersonal objects.
    • Religious Knowledge

      Hawthorne, John; Oxford University (2007-12-01)
      This paper will examine two strategies by which religious believers might attempt to defend the rationality of religious belief. The first strategy is a “fine tuning argument.” The main shortcoming of that strategy is that it ignores the crucial issue of the appropriate prior probabilities. The second strategy is what might be called a “trust” strategy. According to this strategy, a belief that is based on trusting someone who knows something is thereby also an instance of knowledge. This strategy might suffice in some respects, but it involves reliance on a mechanism that is doubtful as a prototype for all of our beliefs.