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What is the standing of a sovereign nation and what are its rights relative to other sovereign nations? What is our obligation to pursue peace? Can intervention in the affairs of another sovereign nation be justified? Who, if any one, has the right to intervene? In this short essay, Kant completes his political theory and philosophy of history, considering the prospects for peace among nations and addressing questions that remain central to our thoughts about nationalism, war, and peace. Ted Humphrey provides an eminently readable translation, along with a brief introduction that sketches Kant's argument.
The concept of democratic freedom refers to more than the kind of freedom embodied by political institutions and procedures. Democratic freedom can only be properly understood if it is grasped as the expression of a culture of freedom that encompasses an entire form of life. Juliane Rebentisch's systematic and historical approach demonstrates that we can learn a great deal about the democratic culture of freedom from its philosophical critics. From Plato to Carl Schmitt, the critique of democratic culture has always been articulated as a critique of its aaestheticization". Rebentisch defends various phenomena of aestheticization D from the irony typical of democratic citizens to the theatricality of the political D as constitutive elements of democratic culture and the notion of freedom at the heart of its ethical and political self-conception. This work will be of particular interest to students of Political Theory, Philosophy and Aesthetics.
A familiar theme in Greek philosophy, largely due to the influence of Plato's Cratylus, linguistic naturalism (the notion that linguistic facts, structures or behaviour are in some significant sense determined by nature) constitutes a major but under-studied area of Roman linguistic thought. Indeed, it holds significance not only for the history of linguistics but also for philosophy, stylistics, rhetoric and more. The chapters in this volume deal with a range of naturalist theories in a variety of authors including Cicero, Varro, Nigidius Figulus, Posidonius, and Dionysius of Halicarnassus. The result is a complex and multi-faceted picture of how language and nature were believed to interrelate in the classical Roman world.
In almost every human society some people get more and others get less. Why is inequity the rule in these societies? In The Origins of Unfairness, philosopher Cailin O'Connor firstly considers how groups are divided into social categories, like gender, race, and religion, to address this question. She uses the formal frameworks of game theory and evolutionary game theory to explore the cultural evolution of the conventions which piggyback on these seemingly irrelevant social categories. These frameworks elucidate a variety of topics from the innateness of gender differences, to collaboration in academia, to household bargaining, to minority disadvantage, to homophily. They help to show how inequity can emerge from simple processes of cultural change in groups with gender and racial categories, and under a wide array of situations. The process of learning conventions of coordination and resource division is such that some groups will tend to get more and others less. O'Connor offers solutions to such problems of coordination and resource division and also shows why we need to think of inequity as part of an ever evolving process. Surprisingly minimal conditions are needed to robustly produce phenomena related to inequity and, once inequity emerges in these models, it takes very little for it to persist indefinitely. Thus, those concerned with social justice must remain vigilant against the dynamic forces that push towards inequity.
A collection of brief, but intimate meditations on life and culture ranging from controversial matters to private moments The internationally acclaimed author Claudio Magris offers a collection of brief "snapshots" reflecting on life and culture from 1999 to 2013 through his very personal lens. Some pieces portray private, intimate moments, while others offer views on public, sometimes controversial matters; the tone is sometimes serious, sometimes humorous, sometimes ironic, but always engaging. The panoramic nature of the vignettes is broad in scope, encompassing a variety of subjects rendered in quick, decisive brushstrokes. It is a little like leafing through a photo album of our times and our society while a learned companion seated beside us offers a perceptive running commentary. Magris's wit-at times pungent, at times self-deprecating, always keen-is refreshingly affable. A continuing adventure by the author who has reinvented "travel literature."
Baseball is a strange sport: it consists of long periods in which little seems to be happening, punctuated by high-energy outbursts of rapid fire activity. Because of this, despite ever greater profits, Major League Baseball is bent on finding ways to shorten games, and to tailor baseball to today's shorter attention spans. But for the true fan, baseball is always compelling to watch-and intellectually fascinating. It's superficially slow-pace is an opportunity to participate in the distinctive thinking practice that defines the game. If baseball is boring, it's boring the way philosophy is boring: not because there isn't a lot going on, but because the challenge baseball poses is making sense of it all. In this deeply entertaining book, philosopher and baseball fan Alva Noe explores the many unexpected ways in which baseball is truly a philosophical kind of game. He ponders how, for example, observers of baseball are less interested in what happens, than in who is responsible for what happens; every action receives praise or blame. To put it another way, in baseball-as in the law-we decide what happened based on who is responsible for what happened. Noe also explains the curious activity of keeping score. A score card is not merely a record of the game, like a video recording; it is an account of the game. Baseball requires that true fans try to tell the story of the game, in real time, as it unfolds, and thus actively participate in its creation. Some argue that baseball is fundamentally a game about numbers. Noe's wide-ranging, thoughtful observations show that, to the contrary, baseball is not only a window on language, culture, and the nature of human action, but is intertwined with deep and fundamental human truths. The book ranges over different baseball topics, from the nature of umpiring and the role of instant replay, to the nature of the strike zone, from the rampant use of surgery to controversy surrounding performance enhancing drugs.
Stoicism is two things: a long past philosophical school of ancient Greece and Rome, and an enduring philosophical movement that still inspires people in the twenty-first century to re-think and re-organize their lives in order to achieve personal satisfaction. What is the connection between them? This Very Short Introduction provides an introductory account of Stoic philosophy, and tells the story of how ancient Stoicism survived and evolved into the movement we see today. Exploring the roots of the school in the philosophy of fourth century BCE Greece, Brad Inwood examines its basic history and doctrines and its relationship to the thought of Plato, Aristotle and his successors, and the Epicureans. Sketching the history of the school's reception in the western tradition, he argues that, despite the differences between ancient and contemporary Stoics, there is a common core of philosophical insight that unites the modern version not just to Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius but also to the school's original founders, Zeno, Cleanthes, and Chrysippus. Inwood concludes by considering the place of Stoicism in modern life. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Starve and Immolate tells the story of leftist political prisoners in Turkey who waged a deadly struggle against the introduction of high security prisons by forging their lives into weapons. Weaving together contemporary and critical political theory with political ethnography, Banu Bargu analyzes the death fast struggle as an exemplary though not exceptional instance of self-destructive practices that are a consequence of, retort to, and refusal of the increasingly biopolitical forms of sovereign power deployed around the globe. Bargu chronicles the experiences, rituals, values, beliefs, ideological self-representations, and contentions of the protestors who fought cellular confinement against the background of the history of Turkish democracy and the treatment of dissent in a country where prisons have become sites of political confrontation. A critical response to Michel Foucault's Discipline and Punish, Starve and Immolate centers on new forms of struggle that arise from the asymmetric antagonism between the state and its contestants in the contemporary prison. Bargu ultimately positions the weaponization of life as a bleak, violent, and ambivalent form of insurgent politics that seeks to wrench the power of life and death away from the modern state on corporeal grounds and in increasingly theologized forms. Drawing attention to the existential commitment, sacrificial morality, and militant martyrdom that transforms these struggles into a complex amalgam of resistance, Bargu explores the global ramifications of human weapons' practices of resistance, their possibilities and limitations.
More than twenty years after its publication, Peter Singer's Ethics into Action continues to inspire new generations of activists through its portrayal of Henry Spira and the animal rights movement. With a new preface from the author, this edition celebrates the continued importance of social movements and provides a path towards furthering changes in our world. Singer, one of the world's most influential living philosophers, reveals how Henry Spira influenced major corporations by simultaneously applying targeted pressures and removing existing obstacles to achieve his ethical goals. As people all over the world continues to struggle for justice, Spira's method of affecting change serves as a proven model for activists fighting across a wide range of causes.
Collected and translated by John B. Thompson, this collection of essays by Paul Ricoeur includes many that had never appeared in English before the volume's publication in 1981. As comprehensive as it is illuminating, this lucid introduction to Ricoeur's prolific contributions to sociological theory features his more recent writings on the history of hermeneutics, its central themes and issues, his own constructive position and its implications for sociology, psychoanalysis and history. Presented in a fresh twenty-first-century series livery, and including a specially commissioned preface written by Charles Taylor, illuminating its enduring importance and relevance to philosophical enquiry, this classic work has been revived for a new generation of readers.
Contemporary political and legal theory typically justifies the value of political and legal institutions on the grounds that such institutions bring about desirable outcomes - such as justice, security, and prosperity. In the popular imagination, however, many people seem to value public institutions for their own sake. The idea that political and legal institutions might be intrinsically valuable has received little philosophical attention. Why Law Matters presents the argument that legal institutions and legal procedures are valuable and matter as such, irrespective of their instrumental value. Harel advances the argument in several ways. Firstly, he examines the value of rights. Traditionally it is believed that rights are valuable because they promote the realisation of values such as autonomy. Instead Harel argues that the values underlying (some) rights are partially constructed by entrenching rights. Secondly he argues that the value of public institutions are not grounded (ONLY) in the contingent fact that such institutions are particularly accountable to the public. Instead, some goods are intrinsically public; their value hinges on their public provision. Thirdly he shows that constitutional directives are not mere contingent instruments to promote justice. In the absence of constitutional entrenchment of rights, citizens live "at the mercy of" their legislatures (even if legislatures protect justice adequately). Lastly, Harel defends judicial review on the grounds that it is an embodiment of the right to a hearing. The book shows that instrumental justifications fail to identify what is really valuable about public institutions and fail to account for their enduring appeal. More specifically legal theorists fail to be attentive to the sentiments of politicians, citizens and activists and to theorise public concerns in a way that is responsive to these sentiments.
Please note: this book is for students taking the pre-2016 OCR GCE Religious Studies AS and A2 specification. The new book is called Religion and Ethics for OCR: The Complete Resource for the New Specification. Ethics for OCR Religious Studies: The Complete Resource for AS and A2 is an ideal guide for students taking AS and A2 courses in the pre-2016 OCR GCE Religious Studies specification (H172 and H572). Ethics for OCR provides a rigorous and accessible introduction to both historical and contemporary ethical debates. Drawing on insights from recent examiners' reports and mark schemes, and following the OCR course outline closely, Mark Coffey and Dennis Brown's landmark book includes: Up-to-date discussions of key debates in religious ethics Ethical theories set in their historical context Attention given to contemporary developments in law, science, technology, and society A thorough guide to writing the perfect exam answer A detailed exposition of OCR's assessment criteria and how best to meet them Profiles of leading ethical, philosophical and religious thinkers, a chapter by chapter glossary, and helpful chapter summaries Discussion points, activity boxes and past paper questions The most comprehensive book on the market, Ethics for OCR Religious Studies provides a rigorous and accessible introduction to both historical and contemporary ethical debates, including chapters on sexual and environmental and business ethics. Written with verve and clarity, the book's user-friendly style and attention to detail will help students of all abilities to achieve their best.
What is truth? Can it be discovered objectively, as science claims? Or is truth a created, highly contested and changing entity, lasting but a moment?
Is there more than one truth? Do we pursue truth or does it pursue us? Why have people sacrificed their lives for it? What is it about truth that can elicit such reactions?
In Rethinking Truth, the authors reflect on the philosophies of:
Rethinking Truth builds on the theories covered in Rethinking Our World and for this reason, it is more suitable for senior students in the human and social sciences. It should also appeal to a general readership seeking a greater understanding of the arguments in the major philosophies.
This clearly written and provocative text outlines the wide range of epistemological and metaphysical pillars of research. In a clear, easy to follow style, the reader is guided through an array of concepts that are defined, explained and made simple. With the aid of helpful examples and case studies, the book challenges the prevailing modes of thinking about qualitative inquiry by showcasing an immense variety of philosophical frameworks. Armed with a strong understanding of this philosophical backbone, students will be able to choose and defend a `pick and mix' of research methods that will uniquely complement their research. Empiricism Rationalism Realism Skepticism Idealism Positivism Post-positivism Idea-ism Hermeneutics Phenomenology Social Ontology Quantum Mechanics Essential reading for new and experienced researchers, this `must' for any social science bookshelf will help unlock a new level of research creativity.
"Why did you do all this for me?" Wilbur asked. "I don't deserve it. I've never done anything for you."
You have been my friend, replied Charlotte. That in itself is a tremendous thing.
from Charlotte's Web by E. B. White
Friendship encompasses a wide range of social bonds, from playground companionship and wartime camaraderie to modern marriages and Facebook links. For many, friendship is more meaningful than familial ties. And yet it is our least codified relationship, with no legal standing or bureaucratic definition. In A Tremendous Thing, Gregory Jusdanis explores the complex, sometimes contradictory nature of friendship, reclaiming its importance in both society and the humanities today. Ranging widely in his discussion, he looks at the art of friendship and friendship in art, finding a compelling link between our need for friends and our engagement with fiction. Both, he contends, necessitate the possibility of entering invented worlds, of reading the minds of others, and of learning to live with people.
Investigating the ethics, aesthetics, and politics of friendship, Jusdanis draws from the earliest writings to the present, from the Epic of Gilgamesh and the Iliad to Charlotte's Web and Brokeback Mountain, as well as from philosophy, sociology, evolutionary biology, psychology, and political theory. He asks: What makes friends stay together? Why do we associate friendship with mourning? Does friendship contribute to the formation of political communities? Can friends desire each other? The history of friendship demonstrates that human beings are a mutually supportive species with an innate aptitude to envision and create ties with others. At a time when we are confronted by war, economic inequality, and climate change, Jusdanis suggests that we reclaim friendship to harness our capacity for cooperation and empathy."
One of the most important Anglo-American philosophers of our time here joins the current philosophical debate about the nature of truth with a work likely to claim a place at the very center of the contemporary philosophical literature on the subject. William P. Alston formulates and defends a realist conception of truth, which he calls alethic realism (from "aletheia", Greek for "truth"). This idea holds that the truth value of a statement (belief or proposition) depends on whether what the statement is about is as the statement says it is. Although this concept may seem quite obvious, Alston says, many thinkers hold views incompatible with it - and much of his book is devoted to a powerful critique of those views. Michael Dummett and Hilary Putnam are two of the prominent and widely influential contemporary philosophers whose anti-realist ideas he attacks. Alston discusses different realist accounts of truth, examining what they do and do not imply. He distinguishes his version, which he characterizes as "minimalist", from various "deflationary" accounts, all of which deny that asserting the truth of a proposition attributes a property of truth to it. He also examines alethic realism in relation to a variety of metaphysical realisms. Finally, Alston argues for the importance - theoretical and practical - of assessing the truth value of statements, beliefs, and propositions.
What moral values do human beings hold in common? As globalization draws us together economically, are our values converging or diverging? In particular, are human rights becoming a global ethic? These were the questions that led Michael Ignatieff to embark on a three-year, eight-nation journey in search of answers. The Ordinary Virtues presents Ignatieff's discoveries and his interpretation of what globalization--and resistance to it--is doing to our conscience and our moral understanding. Through dialogues with favela dwellers in Brazil, South Africans and Zimbabweans living in shacks, Japanese farmers, gang leaders in Los Angeles, and monks in Myanmar, Ignatieff found that while human rights may be the language of states and liberal elites, the moral language that resonates with most people is that of everyday virtues: tolerance, forgiveness, trust, and resilience. These ordinary virtues are the moral operating system in global cities and obscure shantytowns alike, the glue that makes the multicultural experiment work. Ignatieff seeks to understand the moral structure and psychology of these core values, which privilege the local over the universal, and citizens' claims over those of strangers. Ordinary virtues, he concludes, are antitheoretical and anti-ideological. They can be cheerfully inconsistent. When order breaks down and conflicts break out, they are easily exploited for a politics of fear and exclusion--reserved for one's own group and denied to others. But they are also the key to healing, reconciliation, and solidarity on both a local and a global scale.
For the millions of people who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris's new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From bestselling author, neuroscientist, and "new atheist" Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the increasingly large numbers of people who follow no religion, but who suspect that Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history could not have all been epileptics, schizophrenics, or frauds. Throughout the book, Harris argues that there are important truths to be found in the experiences of such contemplatives-and, therefore, that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow. Waking Up is part seeker's memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris-a scientist, philosopher, and famous sceptic-could write it.
As the study of time has flourished in the physical and human sciences, the philosophy of time has come into its own as a lively and diverse area of academic research. Philosophers investigate not just the metaphysics of time, and our experience and representation of time, but the role of time in ethics and action, and philosophical issues in the sciences of time, especially with regard to quantum mechanics and relativity theory. This Handbook presents twenty-three specially written essays by leading figures in their fields: it is the first comprehensive collaborative study of the philosophy of time, and will set the agenda for future work.
Object Lessons is a series of short, beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things. We take it for granted yet the magnet is fundamental to our existence-as important as gravity-and to our survival on this planet and in this universe. It is fundamental to the way we think, how we get home, and how we talk about fascination and love. The magnet has been in existence for more than 13 billion years, born just after the big bang. Magnets were used by ancient cultures for architecture, alignment and art. They are in MRIs, maglev trains, tape recorders, and other technologies. From the physical to the metaphorical, our language is littered with magnetic allusions: magnetic personalities, animal magnetism, Mesmerism. Since humans began to write about it two thousand years ago, the magnet has inspired tales of myth, magic, exploration, science, and art. Eva Barbarossa weaves together these stories of ancient and modern wonders, of discovery and creation, of madness and desire, of beauty and awe, taking us from the spectacle of the aurora borealis to the disastrous searches for magnetic north. Object Lessons is published in partnership with an essay series in the The Atlantic.
In this original and provocative book, Colin Dayan tackles head-on the inexhaustible world, at once tender and fierce, of dogs and humans. We follow the tracks of dogs in the bayous of Louisiana, the streets of Istanbul, and the humane societies of the United States, and in the memories and myths of the humans who love them. Dayan reorients our ethical and political assumptions through a trans-species engagement that risks as much as it promises. She makes a powerful case for questioning what we think of as our deepest-held beliefs and, with dogs in the lead, unsettles the dubious promises of liberal humanism. Moving seamlessly between memoir, case law, and film, Dayan takes politics and animal studies in a new direction-one that gives us glimpses of how we can think beyond ourselves and with other beings. Her unconventional perspective raises hard questions and renews what it means for any animal or human to live in the twenty-first century. Nothing less than a challenge for us to confront violence and suffering even in the privileged precincts of modernity, this searing and lyrical book calls for another way to think the world. Theoretically sophisticated yet aimed at a broad readership, With Dogs at the Edge of Life illuminates how dogs-and their struggles-take us beyond sentimentality and into a form of thought that can make a difference to our lives.
Widely regarded as the father of modern Western philosophy, Descartes sought to look beyond established ideas and create a thought system based on reason. In this profound work he meditates on doubt, the human soul, God, truth and the nature of existence itself. GREAT IDEAS. Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are.
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