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Naturalism And Normativity

Author: Mario De Caro
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231508875
Size: 72.56 MB
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Normativity concerns what we ought to think or do and the evaluations we make. For example, we say that we ought to think consistently, we ought to keep our promises, or that Mozart is a better composer than Salieri. Yet what philosophical moral can we draw from the apparent absence of normativity in the scientific image of the world? For scientific naturalists, the moral is that the normative must be reduced to the nonnormative, while for nonnaturalists, the moral is that there must be a transcendent realm of norms. Naturalism and Normativity engages with both sides of this debate. Essays explore philosophical options for understanding normativity in the space between scientific naturalism and Platonic supernaturalism. They articulate a liberal conception of philosophy that is neither reducible to the sciences nor completely independent of them yet one that maintains the right to call itself naturalism. Contributors think in new ways about the relations among the scientific worldview, our experience of norms and values, and our movements in the space of reason. Detailed discussions include the relationship between philosophy and science, physicalism and ontological pluralism, the realm of the ordinary, objectivity and subjectivity, truth and justification, and the liberal naturalisms of Donald Davidson, John Dewey, John McDowell, and Ludwig Wittgenstein.

Naturalism In Question

Author: Mario De Caro
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674012950
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Today the majority of philosophers in the English-speaking world adhere to the "naturalist" credos that philosophy is continuous with science, and that the natural sciences provide a complete account of all that exists--whether human or nonhuman. The new faith says science, not man, is the measure of all things. However, there is a growing skepticism about the adequacy of this complacent orthodoxy. This volume presents a group of leading thinkers who criticize scientific naturalism not in the name of some form of supernaturalism, but in order to defend a more inclusive or liberal naturalism. The many prominent Anglo-American philosophers appearing in this book--Akeel Bilgrami, Stanley Cavell, Donald Davidson, John Dupré, Jennifer Hornsby, Erin Kelly, John McDowell, Huw Price, Hilary Putnam, Carol Rovane, Barry Stroud, and Stephen White--do not march in lockstep, yet their contributions demonstrate mutual affinities and various unifying themes. Instead of attempting to force human nature into a restricted scientific image of the world, these papers represent an attempt to place human nature at the center of renewed--but still scientifically respectful--conceptions of philosophy and nature.

Wittgenstein And Naturalism

Author: Kevin M. Cahill
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1315301571
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Wittgenstein was centrally concerned with the puzzling nature of the mind, mathematics, morality and modality. He also developed innovative views about the status and methodology of philosophy and was explicitly opposed to crudely "scientistic" worldviews. His later thought has thus often been understood as elaborating a nuanced form of naturalism appealing to such notions as "form of life", "primitive reactions", "natural history", "general facts of nature" and "common behaviour of mankind". And yet, Wittgenstein is strangely absent from much of the contemporary literature on naturalism and naturalising projects. This is the first collection of essays to focus explicitly on the relationship between Wittgenstein and naturalism. The volume is divided into four sections, each of which addresses a different aspect of naturalism and its relation to Wittgenstein's thought. The first section considers how naturalism could or should be understood. The second section deals with some of the main problematic domains—consciousness, meaning, mathematics—that philosophers have typically sought to naturalise. The third section explores ways in which the conceptual nature of human life might be continuous in important respects with animals. The final section is concerned with the naturalistic status and methodology of philosophy itself. This book thus casts a fresh light on many classical philosophical issues and brings Wittgensteinian ideas to bear on a number of current debates-for example experimental philosophy, neo-pragmatism and animal cognition/ethics-in which naturalism is playing a central role.

Naturalism Realism And Normativity

Author: Hilary Putnam
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674969138
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Hilary Putnam’s writings have shaped fields from epistemology to ethics, metaphysics to the philosophy of physics, the philosophy of mathematics to the philosophy of mind. This volume reflects his latest thinking on how to articulate a theory of naturalism which acknowledges that normative phenomena form an ineluctable part of human experience.

A Philosophical Retrospective

Author: Alan Montefiore
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231526792
Size: 51.98 MB
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As a young lecturer in philosophy and the eldest son of a prominent Jewish family, Alan Montefiore faced two very different understandings of his identity: the more traditional view that an identity such as his carried with it, as a matter of given fact, certain duties and obligations, and an opposing view, emphasized by his studies in philosophy, according to which there can be no rationally compelling move from statements of fact whatever the alleged facts may be to "judgments of value." According to this second view, individuals must in the end take responsibility for determining their own values and obligations. In this book, Montefiore looks back on his attempts to understand the nature of this conflict and the misunderstandings it may engender. In the process, he illustrates through personal experience the practical implications of a characteristically philosophical issue. Montefiore finally settles on the following: while everyone has to accept that facts, including those of their own situation, are whatever they may be, both the "traditional" assumption that individuals must recognize certain values and obligations as rooted in those very facts, and the contrary view that individuals are ultimately responsible for determining their own values, are deeply embedded in differing conceptions of society and its relation to its members. Montefiore then examines the misunderstandings between those for whom identity constitutes in effect a conceptual bridge connecting the facts of who and what a person may be to the value commitments incumbent upon them, and those for whom the very idea of such a bridge can be nothing but a confusion. Using key examples from the notoriously vexed case of Jewish identity and from his own encounters with its conflicting meanings and implications, Montefiore depicts the practical significance of the differences between these worldviews, particularly for those who hove to negotiate them.

Between Naturalism And Religion

Author: J?rgen Habermas
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 0745694608
Size: 45.39 MB
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Two countervailing trends mark the intellectual tenor of our age the spread of naturalistic worldviews and religious orthodoxies. Advances in biogenetics, brain research, and robotics are clearing the way for the penetration of an objective scientific self-understanding of persons into everyday life. For philosophy, this trend is associated with the challenge of scientific naturalism. At the same time, we are witnessing an unexpected revitalization of religious traditions and the politicization of religious communities across the world. From a philosophical perspective, this revival of religious energies poses the challenge of a fundamentalist critique of the principles underlying the modern Wests postmetaphysical understanding of itself. The tension between naturalism and religion is the central theme of this major new book by Jrgen Habermas. On the one hand he argues for an appropriate naturalistic understanding of cultural evolution that does justice to the normative character of the human mind. On the other hand, he calls for an appropriate interpretation of the secularizing effects of a process of social and cultural rationalization increasingly denounced by the champions of religious orthodoxies as a historical development peculiar to the West. These reflections on the enduring importance of religion and the limits of secularism under conditions of postmetaphysical reason set the scene for an extended treatment the political significance of religious tolerance and for a fresh contribution to current debates on cosmopolitanism and a constitution for international society.

Self Knowledge And Resentment

Author: Akeel Bilgrami
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674022898
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In Self-Knowledge and Resentment, Akeel Bilgrami argues that self-knowledge of our intentional states is special among all the knowledges we have because it is not an epistemological notion in the standard sense of that term, but instead is a fallout of the radically normative nature of thought and agency. Four themes or questions are brought together into an integrated philosophical position: What makes self-knowledge different from other forms of knowledge? What makes for freedom and agency in a deterministic universe? What makes intentional states of a subject irreducible to its physical and functional states? And what makes values irreducible to the states of nature as the natural sciences study them? This integration of themes into a single and systematic picture of thought, value, agency, and self-knowledge is essential to the book's aspiration and argument. Once this integrated position is fully in place, the book closes with a postscript on how one might fruitfully view the kind of self-knowledge that is pursued in psychoanalysis.

The Routledge Guidebook To Wittgenstein S Philosophical Investigations

Author: Marie McGinn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136170693
Size: 77.51 MB
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Wittgenstein is one of the most important and influential twentieth-century philosophers in the western tradition. In his Philosophical Investigations he undertakes a radical critique of analytical philosophy's approach to both the philosophy of language and the philosophy of mind. The Routledge Guidebook to Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations introduces and assesses: Wittgenstein's life The principal ideas of the Philosophical Investigations Some of the principal disputes concerning the interpretation of his work Wittgenstein's philosophical method and its connection with the form of the text. With further reading included throughout, this guidebook is essential reading for all students of philosophy, and all those wishing to get to grips with this masterpiece.

Humanism And Democratic Criticism

Author: Edward W. Said
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231122641
Size: 47.77 MB
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The final collection of writings by the late intellectual and author of Culture and Imperialism emphasizes the importance of humanism in today's complex, dangerous, and high-tech world, explaining why humanistic values and democratic principles are essential in an era of heightened animosity, aggression, and violence.

Nature S Sublime

Author: Robert S. Corrington
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 0739182137
Size: 26.87 MB
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Nature's Sublime provides a radical new vision of infinite nature and its deepest aesthetic dimensions as they are encountered by finite human sign users. Rather than looking to religion for healing and salvation, Nature's Sublime argues that the arts provide a deeper relationship to the vast depths of nature.