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Volume 14 (2022): Issue 64 (May 2022)

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Ethics and Aesthetics: Issues at Their Intersection

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Volume 12 (2020): Issue 59 (December 2020)

Volume 12 (2020): Issue 58 (December 2020)
SPECIAL ISSUE: ON THE VERY IDEA OF LOGICAL FORM

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Special Issue: Chalmers on Virtual Reality

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Special Issue: III Blasco Disputatio, Singular terms in fiction. Fictional and “real” names

Volume 11 (2019): Issue 53 (November 2019)

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Volume 10 (2018): Issue 51 (December 2018)
SYMPOSIUM ON JASON STANLEY’S “HOW PROPAGANDA WORKS”

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Book symposium on François Recanati’s Mental Files

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New Perspectives on Quine’s “Word and Object”

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XII Taller d'Investigació en Filosofia

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Petrus Hispanus 2009

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Homage to M. S. Lourenço

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Normativity and Rationality

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Special Issue: Petrus Hispanus Lectures 1998: o Mental e o Físico, Guest Editors: Joao Branquinho; M. S. Lourenço

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Special Issue: Language, Logic and Mind Forum, Guest Editors: Joao Branquinho; M. S. Lourenço

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2182-2875
First Published
16 Apr 2017
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 12 (2020): Issue 59 (December 2020)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2182-2875
First Published
16 Apr 2017
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English

Search

5 Articles
Open Access

The Proportionality Argument and the Problem of Widespread Causal Overdetermination

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 331 - 355

Abstract

Abstract

The consensus is that repeatable artworks cannot be identified with particular material individuals. A perennial temptation is to identify them with types, broadly construed. Such identification, however, faces the so-called “Creation Problem.” This problem stems from the fact that, on the one hand, it seems reasonable to accept the claims that (1) repeatable artworks are types, (2) types cannot be created, and (3) repeatable artworks are created, but, on the other hand, these claims are mutually inconsistent. A possible solution to the Creation Problem is to argue that claim (2) can be rejected because (a) the only motivation for it is that a type, being abstract, cannot stand in causal relations, but (b) this motivation is ungrounded, since types can, in fact, stand in such relations. Clearly, in order for this solution to be successful, it is necessary to substantiate the possibility of types to be causally efficacious. In this essay, I examine an attempt to do this with the help of Yablo’s principle of proportionality, which has been undertaken by Walters (2013) and, more recently, Juvshik (2018). Although the argument they advance may seem to provide strong support for the causal efficacy of types, I think it actually fails to do this. To explain why this is so, I first show that this argument commits us to the existence of widespread causal overdetermination involving types and then argue that this commitment is both epistemically and ontologically problematic.

Keywords

  • Ontology of artworks
  • creation problem
  • causal efficacy of types
  • principle of proportionality
  • causal overdetermination
Open Access

Minding Strangers’ Business

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 357 - 370

Abstract

Abstract

When should we interfere in the course of a stranger’s life? While philosophers have discussed at length extreme cases of assisting poor people in famine stricken countries, much less attention has been given to casual, everyday episodes. If I overhear two people discussing a place they are about to visit, and know that it is closed for renovation, should I interfere and tell them so? If I stand next to a customer who has not been given enough change in the supermarket, should I point that out or mind my own business? Using the Kantian notions of love and respect, I answer such questions. I claim that Kant’s terminology is ill-suited for instructing us how to deal with others with whom we are personally involved, but is important for our encounters with strangers. I suggest that we take seriously Kant’s claim that we are “united in one dwelling place”. When around others, keep an open eye to the possibility that they might need help. If there is good reason to suppose that you may help, knock on their door. Let them decide whether they want to open it. They are totally entitled to decline the offer, but should keep in mind that it was given as part of the joint venture of living together with others. The interference should therefore not be regarded as an infringement of privacy.

Keywords

  • Interference
  • strangers
  • respect
  • gratitude
  • ethics
Open Access

Blame and Fault: Toward a New Conative Theory of Blame

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 371 - 394

Abstract

Abstract

This paper outlines a new conative theory of blame. I argue that the best-known conative approaches to blame (Scanlon 1998, 2008, Sher 2006a) misrepresent the cognitive and dispositional components of blame. Section 1 argues, against Scanlon and Sher, that blaming involves the judgment that an act or state is the fault of the blamed. I also propose an alternative dispositional condition on which blaming only occurs if it matters to the blamer whether the blamed gets the punishment that she deserves. In Section 2, I discuss objections to judgment-based accounts of blame (that they cannot tell the difference between blaming and judging to be blameworthy, that they cannot explain why blame is often accompanied by emotion, and that they cannot make sense of irrational blame), and I argue that my proposal can handle all of them.

Keywords

  • blame
  • conative theory
  • fault-judgments
  • irrational blame
  • punishment
Open Access

Two Informational Theories of Memory: a case from Memory-Conjunction Errors

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 395 - 431

Abstract

Abstract

The causal and simulation theories are often presented as very distinct views about declarative memory, their major difference lying on the causal condition. The causal theory states that remembering involves an accurate representation causally connected to an earlier experience (the causal condition). In the simulation theory, remembering involves an accurate representation generated by a reliable memory process (no causal condition). I investigate how to construe detailed versions of these theories that correctly classify memory errors (DRM, “lost in the mall”, and memory-conjunction errors) as misremembering or confabulation. Neither causalists nor simulationists have paid attention to memory-conjunction errors, which is unfortunate because both theories have problems with these cases. The source of the difficulty is the background assumption that an act of remembering has one (and only one) target. I fix these theories for those cases. The resulting versions are closely related when implemented using tools of information theory, differing only on how memory transmits information about the past. The implementation provides us with insights about the distinction between confabulatory and non-confabulatory memory, where memory-conjunction errors have a privileged position.

Keywords

  • Episodic memory
  • memory-conjunction errors
  • causal theory of memory
  • simulation theory of memory
  • information theory
Open Access

The Early Modern Origins of Pragmatism

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 433 - 456

Abstract

Abstract

This paper considers the alleged pragmatism of Berkeley’s philosophy using the two Sellarsian categories of ‘manifest’ and ‘scientific’ images of the world and human beings. The ‘manifest’ image is regarded as a refinement of the ordinary way of conceiving things, and the scientific image is seen as a theoretical picture of the world provided by science. The paper argues that the so-called Berkeleian pragmatism was an effect of Berkeley’s work towards a synthesis of ‘manifest’ and ‘scientific’ images through the creation of one unified synoptic vision of the world and was a part of a new conceptual framework within which these two images could be combined.

Keywords

  • Berkeley
  • James
  • Peirce
  • pragmatism
  • representationalism
5 Articles
Open Access

The Proportionality Argument and the Problem of Widespread Causal Overdetermination

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 331 - 355

Abstract

Abstract

The consensus is that repeatable artworks cannot be identified with particular material individuals. A perennial temptation is to identify them with types, broadly construed. Such identification, however, faces the so-called “Creation Problem.” This problem stems from the fact that, on the one hand, it seems reasonable to accept the claims that (1) repeatable artworks are types, (2) types cannot be created, and (3) repeatable artworks are created, but, on the other hand, these claims are mutually inconsistent. A possible solution to the Creation Problem is to argue that claim (2) can be rejected because (a) the only motivation for it is that a type, being abstract, cannot stand in causal relations, but (b) this motivation is ungrounded, since types can, in fact, stand in such relations. Clearly, in order for this solution to be successful, it is necessary to substantiate the possibility of types to be causally efficacious. In this essay, I examine an attempt to do this with the help of Yablo’s principle of proportionality, which has been undertaken by Walters (2013) and, more recently, Juvshik (2018). Although the argument they advance may seem to provide strong support for the causal efficacy of types, I think it actually fails to do this. To explain why this is so, I first show that this argument commits us to the existence of widespread causal overdetermination involving types and then argue that this commitment is both epistemically and ontologically problematic.

Keywords

  • Ontology of artworks
  • creation problem
  • causal efficacy of types
  • principle of proportionality
  • causal overdetermination
Open Access

Minding Strangers’ Business

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 357 - 370

Abstract

Abstract

When should we interfere in the course of a stranger’s life? While philosophers have discussed at length extreme cases of assisting poor people in famine stricken countries, much less attention has been given to casual, everyday episodes. If I overhear two people discussing a place they are about to visit, and know that it is closed for renovation, should I interfere and tell them so? If I stand next to a customer who has not been given enough change in the supermarket, should I point that out or mind my own business? Using the Kantian notions of love and respect, I answer such questions. I claim that Kant’s terminology is ill-suited for instructing us how to deal with others with whom we are personally involved, but is important for our encounters with strangers. I suggest that we take seriously Kant’s claim that we are “united in one dwelling place”. When around others, keep an open eye to the possibility that they might need help. If there is good reason to suppose that you may help, knock on their door. Let them decide whether they want to open it. They are totally entitled to decline the offer, but should keep in mind that it was given as part of the joint venture of living together with others. The interference should therefore not be regarded as an infringement of privacy.

Keywords

  • Interference
  • strangers
  • respect
  • gratitude
  • ethics
Open Access

Blame and Fault: Toward a New Conative Theory of Blame

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 371 - 394

Abstract

Abstract

This paper outlines a new conative theory of blame. I argue that the best-known conative approaches to blame (Scanlon 1998, 2008, Sher 2006a) misrepresent the cognitive and dispositional components of blame. Section 1 argues, against Scanlon and Sher, that blaming involves the judgment that an act or state is the fault of the blamed. I also propose an alternative dispositional condition on which blaming only occurs if it matters to the blamer whether the blamed gets the punishment that she deserves. In Section 2, I discuss objections to judgment-based accounts of blame (that they cannot tell the difference between blaming and judging to be blameworthy, that they cannot explain why blame is often accompanied by emotion, and that they cannot make sense of irrational blame), and I argue that my proposal can handle all of them.

Keywords

  • blame
  • conative theory
  • fault-judgments
  • irrational blame
  • punishment
Open Access

Two Informational Theories of Memory: a case from Memory-Conjunction Errors

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 395 - 431

Abstract

Abstract

The causal and simulation theories are often presented as very distinct views about declarative memory, their major difference lying on the causal condition. The causal theory states that remembering involves an accurate representation causally connected to an earlier experience (the causal condition). In the simulation theory, remembering involves an accurate representation generated by a reliable memory process (no causal condition). I investigate how to construe detailed versions of these theories that correctly classify memory errors (DRM, “lost in the mall”, and memory-conjunction errors) as misremembering or confabulation. Neither causalists nor simulationists have paid attention to memory-conjunction errors, which is unfortunate because both theories have problems with these cases. The source of the difficulty is the background assumption that an act of remembering has one (and only one) target. I fix these theories for those cases. The resulting versions are closely related when implemented using tools of information theory, differing only on how memory transmits information about the past. The implementation provides us with insights about the distinction between confabulatory and non-confabulatory memory, where memory-conjunction errors have a privileged position.

Keywords

  • Episodic memory
  • memory-conjunction errors
  • causal theory of memory
  • simulation theory of memory
  • information theory
Open Access

The Early Modern Origins of Pragmatism

Published Online: 13 Mar 2021
Page range: 433 - 456

Abstract

Abstract

This paper considers the alleged pragmatism of Berkeley’s philosophy using the two Sellarsian categories of ‘manifest’ and ‘scientific’ images of the world and human beings. The ‘manifest’ image is regarded as a refinement of the ordinary way of conceiving things, and the scientific image is seen as a theoretical picture of the world provided by science. The paper argues that the so-called Berkeleian pragmatism was an effect of Berkeley’s work towards a synthesis of ‘manifest’ and ‘scientific’ images through the creation of one unified synoptic vision of the world and was a part of a new conceptual framework within which these two images could be combined.

Keywords

  • Berkeley
  • James
  • Peirce
  • pragmatism
  • representationalism

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