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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Firing Queer Teachers From Catholic Schools: Ethical And Theological Considerations, Ish Ruiz Oct 2019

Firing Queer Teachers From Catholic Schools: Ethical And Theological Considerations, Ish Ruiz

Conference: The Social Practice of Human Rights

Since 2007, there have been over 90 cases of queer employees fired from Catholic institutions – many of which include dismissals of queer educators from Catholic schools. As religious institutions, Catholic schools are constitutionally protected by a ministerial exception that offers legal immunity to Catholic educational institutions that fire queer employees (which are sometimes considered “ministers” by the courts). The ministerial exception is an extension of the institution’s right to religious freedom to promote its doctrine though its schools. Although this right to discriminate is legally protected, from a moral standpoint, one may argue that the exercise of one human ...


Facing Human Rights: Theorizing Out Of The Experience Of Suffering, Patrick Ahern Oct 2019

Facing Human Rights: Theorizing Out Of The Experience Of Suffering, Patrick Ahern

Conference: The Social Practice of Human Rights

In contending that “the freedom of philosophy is nothing but the capacity to lend a voice to unfreedom,” Adorno recognized that the role of philosophy is to illuminate the deformity of that which is deformed in the structures of power and the institutions that preserve the status quo. A critical treatment of those concepts that obfuscate the realization of emancipation led Adorno, along with Horkheimer, to claim that, “the purpose of human rights was to promise happiness even where power is lacking.” In other words, the language of human rights served to stifle the experiences of the oppressed classes under ...


Disclosing Virtue, Michael Zahorec Apr 2019

Disclosing Virtue, Michael Zahorec

Honors Theses

This project is about the shape of our moral understanding and discourse. Herein, I describe the moral discourse and understanding afforded through narrative. I understand narrative as both a medium of discourse (i.e. storytelling) and a mode of understanding (i.e. a way to understand oneself, others, and the world(s) in which we find ourselves). In order to describe the ethical understanding and discourse constructed through narrative, I use the meta-ethical framework of Aristotelian virtue theory. The language of virtue theory constitutes the framework upon which I construct my argument regarding the irreplaceable and efficacious nature of narrative ...


Bergson’S Philosophy Of Self-Overcoming, Messay Kebede Jan 2019

Bergson’S Philosophy Of Self-Overcoming, Messay Kebede

Books and Book Chapters by University of Dayton Faculty

This book proposes a new reading of Bergsonism based on the admission that time, conceived as duration, stretches instead of passes. This swelling time is full and so excludes the negative. Yet, swelling requires some resistance, but such that it is more of a stimulant than a contrariety. The notion of élan vital fulfills this requirement: it states the immanence of life to matter, thereby deriving the swelling from an internal effort and allowing its conceptualization as self-overcoming. With self-overcoming as the inner dynamics of reality, Bergson dismisses all forms of dualism and reductionist monism because both the absence of ...


Hull House, The Pullman Strike, And Tolstoy: Documenting The Work Of Jane Addams, Marilyn Fischer Jan 2019

Hull House, The Pullman Strike, And Tolstoy: Documenting The Work Of Jane Addams, Marilyn Fischer

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Review:

Mary Lynn McCree Bryan, Maree de Angury, and Ellen Skerrett, editors. The Selected Papers of Jane Addams, Volume III: Creating Hull-House and an International Presence, 1889-1900. University of Illinois Press, 2019.

The sheer amount of material packed into the nearly 1,000 pages of The Selected Papers of Jane Addams, volume 3, is breath-taking. In this volume the editors, Mary Lynn McCree Bryan, Maree de Angury, and Ellen Skerrett include a generous selection of Addams’s correspondence and writings during the first decade of Hull House’s existence, supplemented by extensive endnotes and commentary. This continues the pattern the ...


Review: 'Improvising Improvisation: From Out Of Philosophy, Music, Dance, And Literature', Aili W. Bresnahan Sep 2018

Review: 'Improvising Improvisation: From Out Of Philosophy, Music, Dance, And Literature', Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This book review attempts to interpret the meaning and value of Gary Peters’ book in a way that is true to the kind of book, an experimental improvisation, that it purports to be. As such, it grapples with the difficulties of evaluating the merits of a philosophical discussion within a book that claims not to be philosophy and case studies in performance that beg the question of whether they accurately exemplify the (non-)philosophy they are meant to support. Despite these difficulties, this review ends with the conclusion that this book does, in fact, convey something essential about the nature ...


The Stigma Of Homelessness As An Identity: Homelessness As A Gendered Condition, Jamie Vieson Apr 2018

The Stigma Of Homelessness As An Identity: Homelessness As A Gendered Condition, Jamie Vieson

Honors Theses

The main goal of my thesis is to articulate the problem of homelessness. In order to do this, I examine philosopher Eva Kittay’s work on disability and equality. Throughout her work, Kittay uses the terms human interconnectedness, oppression and citizenship. These three terms serve as the major concepts I explore. Human interconnectedness highlights the links that humans share with one another as interdependent beings. Oppression is the term used to describe how certain individuals or groups in society are treated unequally or are rejected from society. Finally, exploration of citizenship shows the importance of identities in society and how ...


“The Moral Equivalent Of War”: William James’S Minor Variation On Common Themes, Marilyn Fischer Apr 2018

“The Moral Equivalent Of War”: William James’S Minor Variation On Common Themes, Marilyn Fischer

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Unlike other scholars who interpret William James’s “The Moral Equivalent of War” in light of the author’s other writings, I read the essay as James’s contribution to conversations being held within the pre-World War One international peace movement. The essay shares the vocabulary, images, and patterns of reasoning widely employed by others in the movement. James’s analysis of violence described a standard frame of mind at that time. Like many of his contemporaries, he assumed that war had contributed to social cohesion and strenuousness in the past, but that this was no longer the case. Like ...


Diversified Philosophy, Aili W. Bresnahan Jan 2018

Diversified Philosophy, Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

In this essay, Aili Bresnahan notes that institutions and many others are working to diversify the field of philosophy, in terms of the persons who count as philosophers, what counts as a legitimate philosophical methodology, and which phenomena and entities it handles. She writes that this is a positive development that will enrich and enliven the field so that, ultimately, philosophy survives.


Human Development, Human Rights, And The 50th Anniversary Of Populorum Progressio, Ellen Maccarone Nov 2017

Human Development, Human Rights, And The 50th Anniversary Of Populorum Progressio, Ellen Maccarone

Conference: The Social Practice of Human Rights

At the 50th anniversary of the encyclical Populorum Progressio, we have a critical opportunity to bring Paul VI’s insights to the social practice of human rights. The development of peoples discussed by the encyclical isolates areas of significant concern to the Church and humanity more broadly. This, however, is not to say that there are not other issues overlooked in Populorum Progressio that also need to be addressed.

In this paper I argue that the understanding of human development found in Populorum Progressio serves as an important yet sometimes overlooked foundation in Catholic social teaching for the advancement ...


Mechanisms In Ecology, Viorel Pâslaru Jul 2017

Mechanisms In Ecology, Viorel Pâslaru

Books and Book Chapters by University of Dayton Faculty

New mechanistic philosophy has not examined explanations in ecology although they are based extensively on describing mechanisms responsible for phenomena under scrutiny. This chapter uses the example of research on the shrub Lonicera maackii (Amur honeysuckle) to scrutinize individual-level mechanisms that are generally accepted and used in ecology and confronts them with the minimal account of mechanisms. Individual-level mechanisms are for a phenomenon, are hierarchical, and absent entities play a role in their functioning. They are distinguished by the role played by properties in determining activities and organization. The chapter also considers the experimental methods for discovery of individual-level mechanisms ...


Review: 'Embodied Philosophy In Dance: Gaga And Ohad Naharin’S Movement Research', Aili W. Bresnahan Jul 2017

Review: 'Embodied Philosophy In Dance: Gaga And Ohad Naharin’S Movement Research', Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This book is an original and complex philosophy of dance that Katan (now Katan-Schmid) has extrapolated from a close examination of and studio-based engagement with Gaga, Ohad Naharin’s style of contemporary dance movement. It is culled from Katan’s first-hand experience as a participant in the training and as a researcher in conversation with Naharin and Gaga-engaged dancers. Gaga is both practiced alone as somatic movement research (one which studies internal, bodily perception and experience) and exhibited in dances that are choreographed by Naharin and other collaborators for the Batsheva Dance Company of Tel-Aviv, Israel. The philosophy provided here ...


Dancing In Time, Aili W. Bresnahan Jan 2017

Dancing In Time, Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This chapter will analyze the experience and, in particular the conscious experience, of dancing in time from the perspective of the trained dancer while performing. The focus is thus on the experience and consciousness of a dancer who is moving her body in time rather than on the experience of a seated audience member or dance appreciator who is watching a dancer move. The question of how temporality is experienced in dance by the appreciator will therefore not be addressed here.

The primary kind of “experience” that will be the focus of my discussion of temporal experience comes from classical ...


[Not] Buying It: Prostitution As Unwanted Sex, Rebecca Whisnant Jan 2017

[Not] Buying It: Prostitution As Unwanted Sex, Rebecca Whisnant

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Noting the relative invisibility of prostitution buyers, or Johns, in discussions of the morality of prostitution, this article criticizes Johns’ behavior on the grounds that they are culpably involved in causing the typical harms of prostitution in the lives of the women whom they pay for sex. Those harms are, at bottom, the result of being habitually subjected to unwanted sex, and they are exacerbated rather than mitigated by such sex being bought and paid for. Efforts to normalize and legalize sex-buying should therefore be resisted.


Appreciating Dance: The View From The Audience, Aili W. Bresnahan Jan 2017

Appreciating Dance: The View From The Audience, Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Dance can be appreciated from all sorts of perspectives: For instance, by the dancer while dancing, by the choreographer while watching in the wings, by the musician in the orchestra pit who accompanies the dance, or by the loved-one of a dancer who watches while hoping that the dancer performs well and avoids injury. This essay will consider what it takes to appreciate dance from the perspective of a seated, non-moving audience member. A dance appreciator in this position is typically someone who can hear and see, who can feel vibrations of sound through their skin, and who can have ...


The Research Skills Of Undergraduate Philosophy Majors: Teaching Information Literacy, Heidi Gauder, Fred W. Jenkins Sep 2016

The Research Skills Of Undergraduate Philosophy Majors: Teaching Information Literacy, Heidi Gauder, Fred W. Jenkins

Roesch Library Faculty Publications

This article presents a case study of how one school introduced a one-credit course for philosophy majors focused on effective searching for and critical evaluation of primary and secondary sources. The course curriculum is based on departmental learning outcomes and is also aligned with the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) standards.


Pornography, Humiliation, And Consent, Rebecca Whisnant Jul 2016

Pornography, Humiliation, And Consent, Rebecca Whisnant

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This article considers the role of humiliation in contemporary pornography, arguing that it constitutes a severe form of harm to many female pornography performers. It further contends that the apparently consensual nature of much humiliating pornography exacerbates its harm to the humiliated performers.


Dancing Philosophy: What Happens To Philosophy When Considered From The Point Of View Of A Dancer, Aili W. Bresnahan Jun 2016

Dancing Philosophy: What Happens To Philosophy When Considered From The Point Of View Of A Dancer, Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Western philosophical aesthetics tends to answer the question, “What is art?” by starting with the perspective of the art appreciator. What does the spectator perceive in the artistic entity at issue? For example, are these properties formal and tangible, an arrangement of lines and colors as provided by Clive Bell’s theory of significant form? Are they contextual—are they, for example, the expression of the experience of a particular culture? Or are these properties relational in the sense of being a comment on or response to another art-historical movement, such as Cubism?

Starting from this perspective, the methodology tends ...


Review: 'Neurobiology: A Functional Approach', Paul Tibbetts Jun 2016

Review: 'Neurobiology: A Functional Approach', Paul Tibbetts

Philosophy Faculty Publications

The focus of this volume is on how nervous systems work and why they work as they do in the context of “the problems that brains help organisms solve” (p. xix). Accordingly, throughout this 16-chapter publication, the focus of the author is more on neural architecture and functioning at the circuitry and systems levels of analysis than on cellular and genetic factors. Actually, I found a nicely balanced and constantly interwoven discussion of all of these levels of analysis. The opening chapter is an overview of neuroanatomy and organization, neural circuitry, and functional architecture.

In order, the following chapters cover ...


A Balancing Act: Reading 'Amoris Laetitia', Peter Steinfels, Paige E. Hochschild, William L. Portier, Sandra A. Yocum, Dennis O'Brien May 2016

A Balancing Act: Reading 'Amoris Laetitia', Peter Steinfels, Paige E. Hochschild, William L. Portier, Sandra A. Yocum, Dennis O'Brien

Religious Studies Faculty Publications

Five religious scholars provide commentary on Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love), Pope Francis's 2016 apostolic exhortation on love in the family.


Trauma, Oppression, And Identity: A Philosophical Approach To Justice In Catholic Communities, Dominic Sanfilippo Apr 2016

Trauma, Oppression, And Identity: A Philosophical Approach To Justice In Catholic Communities, Dominic Sanfilippo

Honors Theses

Many disciplines have contributed to the evolving understanding of trauma and oppression. The discipline of philosophy offers us the opportunity to ask the question: what should we be doing to create conditions of justice in communities where people have experienced trauma or oppression in relation to their identity? In this thesis, I will use philosophy to propose ways that we can ameliorate injustice in social and religious settings, particularly Catholicism. By examining historical and contemporary questions around identity and the self, I hope to begin to articulate both a specific problem in the Church and identify possible paths toward creating ...


Power, Virtue, And Vice, Peggy Desautels Apr 2016

Power, Virtue, And Vice, Peggy Desautels

Philosophy Faculty Publications

I approach virtue theory in a way that avoids idealized social ontologies and instead focuses on social hierarchies that include relations of power. I focus on the virtues tied to improving social environments—what I refer to as social-ethic virtues—and examine how the development of social-ethic virtues is influenced by motivations for and situations involving power. I draw on research in social and personality psychology to show that persons motivated by power and persons holding powerful social positions tend to behave in ways that correlate with certain virtuous and vicious patterns of behavior. I maintain that patterns of moral ...


'But What About Feminist Porn?' Examining The Work Of Tristan Taormino, Rebecca Whisnant Apr 2016

'But What About Feminist Porn?' Examining The Work Of Tristan Taormino, Rebecca Whisnant

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This article examines the work of Tristan Taormino, a prominent self-described feminist pornographer, in order to illustrate themes and commitments common among those who produce, perform in, and/or support feminist pornography. I argue that her work is burdened by thin and limited conceptions of feminism, authenticity, and sexual ethics, as well as by the profit-based exigencies of producing “feminist porn” within the mainstream pornography industry. I conclude that, if indeed feminist pornography is possible, Taormino’s work falls far short of the mark. Public Health Significance Statement: This study suggests that Taormino’s pornographic films are unlikely to have ...


A Pluralistic Universe In Twenty Years, Marilyn Fischer Apr 2016

A Pluralistic Universe In Twenty Years, Marilyn Fischer

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Placed side by side, James' A Pluralistic Universe and Addams’s Twenty Years at Hull-House seem to have little in common. James’s critique of absolute idealism is written for intellectuals comfortable with philosophical abstractions. Twenty Years is full of stories about the lives of poor people and immigrants. Yet, sometime after April 1909, when A Pluralistic Universe appeared, and before November 1910, when Twenty Years was published, Addams inserted a few telling quotations into her manuscript. I will give a reading of Twenty Years as a presentation in real time of James’s pluralistic universe, with both form and ...


Aristotle On The Metaphysics Of Emotions, Myrna Gabbe Jan 2016

Aristotle On The Metaphysics Of Emotions, Myrna Gabbe

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This article explores the nature of Aristotelian emotions and the body-soul metaphysics required to undergird them. The point of departure is an oft-cited argument that appeals to our experience of fear and anger to show the inseparability of the soul. My claim is that this argument is commonly misunderstood: that the intended target is not a separable soul, but an embodied soul.

Reinterpreted, we find that Aristotle is driven by an interest to integrate the sentient body with the intellect. And while, on this interpretation, the argument does not support a functionalist reading of Aristotle on the soul, it does ...


Beyond Dualism And Monism: Bergson’S Slanted Being, Messay Kebede Jan 2016

Beyond Dualism And Monism: Bergson’S Slanted Being, Messay Kebede

Philosophy Faculty Publications

There is an old but still unresolved debate pertaining to the question of Bergsonian monism or dualism. Scholars who think that Bergson is ultimately monist clash with those who claim that he has consistently maintained a dualist position. Others speak of contradiction and point out his failure to reconcile dualism with monism. What feeds on the debate is Bergson’s undeniable change of direction: while his first book is flagrantly dualist, his second book takes a sharp turn toward monism. Without denying the intricacy generated by the change of direction, this paper argues that the originality of his position is ...


Ecological Laws And Their Promise Of Explanations, Viorel Pâslaru Jan 2016

Ecological Laws And Their Promise Of Explanations, Viorel Pâslaru

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Marcel Weber (1999) argued that the principle of competitive exclusion is a law of ecology that could explain phenomena (1) by direct application, or (2) by describing default states. Since he did not offer an account of explanation by direct application of laws, I offer an interpretation of explanation by direct application of laws based on a proposal by Elgin and Sober (2002). I show that in both cases it is the descriptions of mechanisms that explain phenomena, and not the laws. Lev Ginzburg and Mark Colyvan (2004) argued Malthus’ Law of Exponential Growth is the first law of ecology ...


Paralysis And Sexuality In Medical Literature And The 'Acts Of Peter', Meghan Henning Oct 2015

Paralysis And Sexuality In Medical Literature And The 'Acts Of Peter', Meghan Henning

Religious Studies Faculty Publications

This paper focuses on the story of Peter’s daughter that is found in the Berlin Coptic papyrus BG 8502.4 and is associated with the apocryphal Acts of Peter. Research on the story of Peter’s daughter has primarily focused on its interpretation of the theme of chastity, or whether the story was originally included in the Acts of Peter. In the course of these investigations, scholars have taken for granted the curious assumption of the text that paralysis renders Peter’s daughter unfit for marriage, and thus safe from Ptolemy’s unwanted advances.

This paper explores the underlying ...


Pornography And Humiliation, Rebecca Whisnant Oct 2015

Pornography And Humiliation, Rebecca Whisnant

Philosophy Faculty Publications

In discussions about pornography, the boundary of the harmful and unacceptable is, for many, the lack of consent. But my brief analysis here shows that this is a dangerous simplification. Images of women who accept and even welcome their own humiliation and degradation are deeply destructive, not only for the women portrayed, but for women in general.


Improvisation In The Arts, Aili W. Bresnahan Sep 2015

Improvisation In The Arts, Aili W. Bresnahan

Philosophy Faculty Publications

This article focuses primarily on improvisation in the arts as discussed in philosophical aesthetics, supplemented with accounts of improvisational practice by arts theorists and educators. It begins with an overview of the term improvisation, first as it is used in general and then as it is used to describe particular products and practices in the individual arts. From here, questions and challenges that improvisation raises for the traditional work-of-art concept, the type-token distinction and the appreciation and evaluation of the arts will be explored. This article concludes with the suggestion that further research and discussion on improvisation in the arts ...