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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Inevitability In History, Monroe C. Beardsley Jan 1971

Inevitability In History, Monroe C. Beardsley

Philosophic Exchange

Historians sometimes say that one event or set of events made another event inevitable. This paper proposes an analysis of the concept of inevitability that is employed in such claims. To say that one event E made another event F inevitable is to say that: (1) E and F occurred, and in that temporal order, and (2) After E, and because of E, no action within the power of any living person or persons who desired F not to occur would have been followed by the nonoccurrence of F. One of the corollaries of this analysis is that anyone who ...


Comment On Monroe Beardsley’S ‘Inevitability In History’, Leonard Krieger Jan 1971

Comment On Monroe Beardsley’S ‘Inevitability In History’, Leonard Krieger

Philosophic Exchange

There seem to be inevitabilities both within and without history. Thus, Monroe Beardsley’s analysis of historical inevitability raises this question: what is the relationship between the extra-historical and the historical inevitability? There seems to be an assumption that the concept of inevitability is the same within and without history. I wish to question that assumption. There are distinctively historical forms of inevitability that cannot be assimilated to other kinds of inevitability.


Determinism And Inevitability, Arthur C. Danto Jan 1971

Determinism And Inevitability, Arthur C. Danto

Philosophic Exchange

Monroe Beardsley’s analysis of historical inevitability is simply an analysis of determinism. Thus, he has not specified what, in excess of determinism, is implied by assertions of historical inevitability.


On Being In The Mind, Roderick Firth Jan 1971

On Being In The Mind, Roderick Firth

Philosophic Exchange

There is exactly one good reason to prefer dualism to the identity theory, and it is is this: whereas brain events occur in a particular spatial location inside the head, it is nonsensical to say that mental events occur in any particular location. Professor Shaffer’s other objections to the identity theory are either parasitic on this one, or else unsuccessful.


Ethical And Epistemic Dilemmas Of Behaviorism And The Identity Thesis, George J. Stack Jan 1971

Ethical And Epistemic Dilemmas Of Behaviorism And The Identity Thesis, George J. Stack

Philosophic Exchange

Jerome Shaffer’s argument against behaviorism and the identity theory assume that the wrongness of causing pain is constituted entirely by that effect. However, the intrinsic wrongness of such actions lies in the intentions of the agent, not in the physical responses of the victim.


A Response To Professor Scheffler’S Paper, Reginald D. Archambault Jan 1971

A Response To Professor Scheffler’S Paper, Reginald D. Archambault

Philosophic Exchange

I find much of value in Professor Scheffler’s remarks. However, there is a problem facing teacher education that very fundamental, and it requires a more radical solution. The problem is a crisis of faith in our current system of education. This crisis compels the prospective teacher to consider the characterization, definition, and justification of any subject matter whatsoever.


Philosophy And The Curriculum, Israel Scheffler Jan 1971

Philosophy And The Curriculum, Israel Scheffler

Philosophic Exchange

There are many ways in which philosophy can contribute to the improvement of education. This paper proposes one particular contribution. Those who are studying to be teachers should be taught some of the philosophy that is related to the discipline that they will teach. There are four ways in which this can contribute to their education. First, it will give an analytical description of the forms of thought employed in their discipline. Second, it will provide some evaluation and criticism of those same forms of thought. Third, it will analyze some specific materials in such a way as to systematize ...


Remarks On ‘Philosophy And The Curriculum’, John D. Wilson Jan 1971

Remarks On ‘Philosophy And The Curriculum’, John D. Wilson

Philosophic Exchange

The ‘philosophy-of’ approach advocated by Professor Scheffler would be enormously helpful to the future teacher. Systematic experience with the philosophical literature in his area will do more to bolster the confidence of the teacher than almost anything else that he or she will learn in the liberal arts.


The Ethics Of Belief, Brand Blanshard Jan 1971

The Ethics Of Belief, Brand Blanshard

Philosophic Exchange

There is an ethics of thought, as well as of practice, and that ethics is the same outside religion as within it. We may not be able to control our beliefs directly, but we can control them indirectly. So we are accountable for the ways in which we form our beliefs. Some say that beliefs are private affairs, but our beliefs affect our actions, and our actions have consequences for others. Thus we are accountable for our beliefs. Religious traditions that promote unquestioning acceptance of belief without evidence are violating the ethics of belief. William James’ defense of belief without ...


Toward A Reasonable Ethics Of Belief, Frederick Ferre Jan 1971

Toward A Reasonable Ethics Of Belief, Frederick Ferre

Philosophic Exchange

Reason has an important role to play in every area of life, including religion. However, Dr. Blanshard’s definition of what is “reasonable” is too narrow. There are many kinds and degrees of evidence. Even if one should not believe contrary to the evidence, or without any evidence, one might be permitted to believe in the absence of perfect evidence. Moreover, what constitutes relevant evidence is not the same in all areas of life. The kind of evidence that is relevant to a belief in physics is not the same as the kind of evidence that is relevant to a ...


Vision And Dream In The Cinema, F. E. Sparshott Jan 1971

Vision And Dream In The Cinema, F. E. Sparshott

Philosophic Exchange

There are many ways in which filmgoing is like dreaming. The space and time of the film experience are distorted and illusory. For instance, one has the sense of being spatially present on the filmed scene. However, if we really accepted a change in the camera viewpoint as a change in our own position, rapid intercutting between different viewpoints would be intolerable. This suggests that in film our sense of space is somehow bracketed or held in suspense. Likewise, we take what we see in the film to be happening in the present, yet we tolerate jumps backward and forward ...


The Conventions Of Film: A Response To Professor Sparshott, Gerald Rabkin Jan 1971

The Conventions Of Film: A Response To Professor Sparshott, Gerald Rabkin

Philosophic Exchange

The difficulty with judging Professor Sparshott’s analogy between our dream experience and the experience in film lies in the extreme subjectivity of our dream experience. Perhaps an entire film seems dreamlike, but the judgment tends to be intensely subjective.


On Sparshott’S ‘Vision And Dream In The Cinema’, Jack Glickman Jan 1971

On Sparshott’S ‘Vision And Dream In The Cinema’, Jack Glickman

Philosophic Exchange

I agree with much of Professor Sparshott’s argument. I would add that when film is not taken as a recording of events that occurred, it is taken as a recording of events that were contrived; and that it is taken as a recording entails that no film is taken as present time. When we are caught up in viewing a film, we are primarily concerned with the story. Our fundamental concern is not with the film’s space and time, but with certain characters in human situations. Our main concern is with human experience.


Mrs. Foot On The Sufficiency Of Hypothetical Imperatives, Lewis White Beck Jan 1971

Mrs. Foot On The Sufficiency Of Hypothetical Imperatives, Lewis White Beck

Philosophic Exchange

The issue between Mrs. Foot and Immanuel Kant is this: does the reason why one ought to do something always lie in expected, desired consequences, so that the command to do it is hypothetical? Mrs. Foot argues that the answer is “yes,” and that any alternative use of “ought” is unintelligible. I think that her argument for this claim is stronger when it is directed at the intuitionists than when it is directed at Kant. An analogy with logic, which is full of categorical imperatives, supports Kant’s position against Mrs. Foot.


In Defense Of The Hypothetical Imperative, Philippa Foot Jan 1971

In Defense Of The Hypothetical Imperative, Philippa Foot

Philosophic Exchange

Kant insisted that moral precepts must be categorical imperatives, telling the agent what he should do, no matter what his desires or interests. Kant contrasted these categorical imperatives with hypothetical imperatives, which operate only on the condition of certain desires or interests. I believe it is a mistake to think that Kant has disposed of the hypothetical imperative in morals. In this paper, I will consider the arguments that he has brought against it, and respond to them.


Religion And Belief, J. Calvin Keene Jan 1971

Religion And Belief, J. Calvin Keene

Philosophic Exchange

I agree with Dr. Blanshard that religion needs reason, and belief should be made as rational as possible. It is an ethical responsibility to believe the truth. But belief always includes an element of tentativeness. So belief is sometimes appropriate, even in the absence of compelling evidence. Moreover, religion is related to a very different reality than is science. Consequently, the kinds of evidence that are appropriate to the one are not necessarily appropriate to the other. Insofar as God is conceived as a person, rather than an impersonal object, God cannot be approached or studied in the way in ...


Foot-Notes, Joseph Gilbert Jan 1971

Foot-Notes, Joseph Gilbert

Philosophic Exchange

The major disagreement here is that Foot, contra Kant, denies that moral ends are ends that the agent has a duty to adopt. Though I, in part, agree with Foot, it is difficult to see what is paradoxical about the view that she denies. Foot’s position is the one that appears paradoxical. Her position is that I may have duties within morality, but I cannot have a duty to adopt the ends of morality. On the contrary, morality is inescapable.


The Philosophy Of Mind And Some Ethical Implications, Jerome A. Shaffer Jan 1971

The Philosophy Of Mind And Some Ethical Implications, Jerome A. Shaffer

Philosophic Exchange

Materialism is the view that the only things in existence are material – matter in motion. Materialists hold that mental events are either identical to bodily events, or that mental events are particular kinds of behavior exhibited by particular material objects. These theories face several serious problems, involving spatial location, privileged access, and other phenomena. Moreover, these theories cannot explain why it is wrong to cause pain in another person. It is not obvious why it is wrong to cause another person to exhibit pain behavior, nor is it obviously wrong to cause physical events to occur in another person’s ...