Philosophia

http://link.springer.com/journal/11406

List of Papers (Total 112)

Defeater Goes External

This paper proposes a new externalist account of defeaters, in terms of reliable indicators, as an integral part of a unified externalist account of warrant and defeat. It is argued that posing externalist conditions on warrant, but internalist conditions on defeat lead to undesirable tensions. The proposal is contrasted to some rival accounts and then tested on some widely ...

On a Loophole in Causal Closure

Standard definitions of causal closure focus on where the causes in question are. In this paper, the focus is changed to where they are not. Causal closure is linked to the principle that no cause of another universe causes an event in a particular universe. This view permits the one universe to be affected by the other via an interface. An interface between universes can be seen ...

The Embodied and Situated Nature of Moods

In this paper I argue that it is misleading to regard the brain as the physical basis or “core machinery” of moods. First, empirical evidence shows that brain activity not only influences, but is in turn influenced by, physical activity taking place in other parts of the organism (such as the endocrine and immune systems). It is therefore not clear why the core machinery of moods ...

Outline of a Non-Deliberative, Mood-Based, Theory of Action

In a series of famous experiments, Benjamin Libet claimed to have shown that there is no scientific basis for our commonsensical understanding of freedom of the will. The actions we are about to undertake register in our brains before they register in our conscious minds. And yet, all that Libet may have shown is that long-invoked notions such as “the will” and “freedom” are poor ...

Intuition-Talk: Virus or Virtue?

The word ‘intuition’ is used frequently both in philosophy and in discussions about philosophical methods. It has been argued that this intuition-talk makes no (clear) semantic contribution and that intuition-talk is thus a bad habit that ought to be abandoned. I urge caution in making this inference. There are many pragmatic roles intuition-talk might play. Moreover, according to ...

What Might it Mean for Political Theory to Be More ‘Realistic’?

This paper explores two different versions of ‘the realist turn’ in recent political theory. It begins by setting out two principal realist criticisms of liberal moralism: that it is both descriptively and normatively inadequate. It then pursues the second criticism by arguing that there are two fundamentally different responses among realists to the alleged normative inadequacy of ...

Dismissing the Moral Sceptic: A Wittgensteinian Approach

Cartesian scepticism poses the question of how we can justify our belief that other humans experience consciousness in the same way that we do. Wittgenstein’s response to this scepticism is one that does not seek to resolve the problem by providing a sound argument against the Cartesian sceptic. Rather, he provides a method of philosophical inquiry which enables us to move past ...

The Political Theory of Modus Vivendi

One of John Horton’s most original and significant contributions to political theory is his development and exploration of the political theory of modus vivendi (MV). I examine what Horton understands a MV to be, what sort of theory he intends the political theory of MV to be, and why he believes a MV to be the best we can reasonably hope for. I consider how far his notion of MV ...

Associative Obligation and the Social Contract

John Horton has argued for an associative theory of political obligation in which such obligation is seen as a concomitant of membership of a particular polity, where a polity provides the generic goods of order and security. Accompanying these substantive claims is a methodological thesis about the centrality of the phenomenology of ordinary moral consciousness to our ...

Introduction: Forgiveness and Conflict

The papers collected in this volume are a selection of papers that were presented - or scheduled to be presented - at a workshop entitled Forgiveness and Conflict, which took place from 8-10 September 2014, as part of the Mancept Workshops in Political Theory at the University of Manchester. Some of these contributions are now compiled in this volume. The selected papers draw from ...

Ineffability: Reply to Professors Metz and Cooper

In the first two sections of this reply article, I provide a brief introduction to the topic of ineffability and a summary of Ineffability and Religious Experience. This is followed, in section 3, by some reflections in reply to the response articles by Professors Metz and Cooper. Section 4 presents some concluding remarks on the future of philosophy of religion in the light of the ...

Sensitivity hasn’t got a Heterogeneity Problem - a Reply to Melchior

In a recent paper, Melchior pursues a novel argumentative strategy against the sensitivity condition. His claim is that sensitivity suffers from a ‘heterogeneity problem:’ although some higher-order beliefs are knowable, other, very similar, higher-order beliefs are insensitive and so not knowable. Similarly, the conclusions of some bootstrapping arguments are insensitive, but ...

Toleration and Pragmatism: Themes from The Work of John Horton

John Horton’s work has been particularly influential in debates on specific topics related to toleration, political obligation, modus vivendi and political realism. More recently, he has synthesised these views in the form of a distinctive position in political philosophy, a position that has the potential to question much of the received wisdom in the field. The papers of this ...

Do Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence?

In 1979 astronomer Carl Sagan popularized the aphorism “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” (ECREE). But Sagan never defined the term “extraordinary.” Ambiguity in what constitutes “extraordinary” has led to misuse of the aphorism. ECREE is commonly invoked to discredit research dealing with scientific anomalies, and has even been rhetorically employed in attempts ...

Healing Multiculturalism: Middle-Ground Liberal Forgiveness in a Diverse Public Realm

This article examines debates about political forgiveness in liberal, pluralist societies. Although the concept of forgiveness is not usually taken up by liberals, I outline a plausible conception by exploring two recent approaches. The first, ‘unattached articulation’, concept requires no real emotional change on the forgiver’s part, but rather a form of civic restraint. In ...

Transgressions Are Equal, and Right Actions Are Equal: some Philosophical Reflections on Paradox III in Cicero’s Paradoxa Stoicorum

In Paradoxa Stoicorum, the Roman philosopher Cicero defends six important Stoic theses. Since these theses seem counterintuitive, and it is not likely that the average person would agree with them, they were generally called “paradoxes”. According to the third paradox, (P3), (all) transgressions (wrong actions) are equal and (all) right actions are equal. According to one ...

Sufficient Reasons to Act Wrongly: Making Parfit’s Kantian Contractualist Formula Consistent with Reasons

In On What Matters (2011) Derek Parfit advocates the Kantian Contractualist Formula as one of three supreme moral principles. In important cases, this formula entails that it is wrong for an agent to act in a way that would be partially best. In contrast, Parfit’s wide value-based objective view of reasons entails that the agent often have sufficient reasons to perform such acts. ...

Constitutivism and Transcendental Practical Philosophy: How to Pull the Rabbit Out of the Hat

Constitutivism aims to justify substantial normative standards as constitutive of practical reason. In this way, it can defend the constructivist commitment to avoiding realism and anti-realism in normative disciplines. This metaphysical debate is the perspective from which the nature of the constitutivist justification is usually discussed. In this paper, I focus on a related, but ...

Berg on Belief Reports

Jonathan Berg’s insightful and lucid book Direct Belief develops a pragmatic account of our intuitions about Frege-cases. More precisely Berg argues that our practice of belief-reporting normally exhibits certain regularities. He argues that utterances of belief reports typically conversationally implicate that the reports adhere to these regularities. And he uses these ...

Forgiveness and Moral Development

Forgiveness is clearly an important aspect of our moral lives, yet surprisingly Kant, one of the most important authors in the history of Western ethics, seems to have very little to say about it. Some authors explain this omission by noting that forgiveness sits uncomfortably in Kant’s moral thought: forgiveness seems to have an ineluctably ‘elective’ aspect which makes it to a ...

Forgiveness, Representative Judgement and Love of the World: Exploring the Political Significance of Forgiveness in the Context of Transitional Justice and Reconciliation Debates

The article examines the political challenge and significance of forgiveness as an indispensable response to the inherently imperfect and tragic nature of political life through the lens of the existential, narrative-inspired judging sensibility. While the political significance of forgiveness has been broadly recognized in transitional justice and reconciliation contexts, the ...

Introduction to Ethics of Forgiveness and Revenge

The papers collected in this volume were first presented at a workshop entitled Ethics of Forgiveness and Revenge, which was held May 22-23, 2014 at Union College in Schenectady, New York. The papers cover a range of topics, including the rightness and wrongness of vengeance and forgiveness, who has the standing to avenge or forgive, the relationship between retributive punishment ...