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Displaying: 1-20 of 258 documents


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1. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Kerry McKenzie A Curse on Both Houses: Naturalistic versus A Priori Metaphysics and the Problem of Progress
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A priori metaphysics has come under repeated attack by naturalistic metaphysicians, who take their closer connection to the sciences to confer greater epistemic credentials on their theories. But it is hard to see how this can be so unless the problem of theory change that has for so long vexed philosophers of science can be addressed in the context of scientific metaphysics. This paper argues that canonical metaphysical claims, unlike their scientific counterparts, cannot meaningfully be regarded as ‘approximately true,’ and that this means that the epistemic progress that science arguably enjoys through episodes of theory change cannot be expected to transfer to its metaphysics. What the value of engaging in metaphysics of science before the emergence of a final theory becomes correspondingly unclear.
2. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Christopher A. Bobier Thomas Aquinas on the Basis of the Irascible-Concupiscible Division
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Thomas Aquinas divides the sensory appetite into two powers: the irascible and the concupiscible. The irascible power moves creatures toward arduous goods and away from arduous evils, while the concupiscible power moves creatures toward pleasant goods and away from non-arduous evils. Despite the importance of this distinction, it remains unclear what counts as an arduous good or evil, and why arduousness is the defining feature of the division. The aim of this paper is twofold. First, I argue that an arduous object is one that is difficult and important for the creature. Second, given this proper understanding of arduousness, I highlight the shortcomings of the standard interpretation of Aquinas’s argument for the irascible-concupiscible distinction and suggest an alternative. I argue that Aquinas grounds the distinction in the distinction between useful and pleasant goods. I explain how these distinct goods allow arduousness to be the defining feature of the irascible-concupiscible division.
3. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Daniel A. Wilkenfeld Living with Autism: Quus-ing in a Plus-ers World
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In this paper, I explore the possibility that the point Kripke (1982) made about understanding meaning also applies to understanding social interaction. This understanding involves extending what one has learned from a finite number of past observations to provide normative guidance for an indefinitely complicated future. Kripke argues (to my mind correctly) that what one should do in the future is inevitably underdetermined by the infinite possible interpretations of the past. Moreover, no matter how much one attempts to make the rules explicit, they will always be underspecified. I then explore the speculative hypothesis that having different tacit dispositions made manifest in one’s understanding of the rules of social engagement would look remarkably similar to tendencies exhibited by many autistic individuals. The analogy will say something substantive about how neurotypicals (and other autists) should treat the behavior of autistic individuals—if we are not even doing anything incorrect, then society should not be criticizing our means of engagement.
4. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Robert Audi Toward an Epistemology of Moral Principles
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The epistemology of moral principles should be developed in relation to general epistemology and integrated with a plausible moral ontology. On both counts, it is important to consider the nature of moral properties and, more generally, normative properties. This paper distinguishes two kinds of normative properties, indicates how they are related to one another and to moral properties, contrasts their supervenience on natural properties with their grounding in those properties, and, in the light of the points then in view, argues for a moderately rationalist account of knowledge of moral principles. The paper also considers in detail how one might account for the a priori status of certain moral principles—a status that remains controversial and is in any case difficult to establish. The final section shows how the overall position of the paper may be consistent with moral naturalism but does not depend on it.
book symposium
5. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Sarah Moss Précis of Probabilistic Knowledge
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6. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
John MacFarlane On Probabilistic Knowledge
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7. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Daniel Greco Acting on Probabilistic Knowledge
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8. Res Philosophica: Volume > 97 > Issue: 1
Sarah Moss Reply to MacFarlane and Greco
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articles
9. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Eduardo Pérez-Navarro, Víctor Fernández Castro, Javier González de Prado Salas, Manuel Heras–Escribano Not Expressivist Enough: Normative Disagreement about Belief Attribution
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The expressivist account of knowledge attributions, while claiming that these attributions are nonfactual, also typically holds that they retain a factual component. This factual component involves the attribution of a belief. The aim of this work is to show that considerations analogous to those motivating an expressivist account of knowledge attributions can be applied to belief attributions. As a consequence, we claim that expressivists should not treat the so-called factual component as such. The phenomenon we focus on to claim that belief attributions are non-factual is that of normative doxastic disagreement. We show through several examples that this kind of disagreement is analogous to that of the epistemic kind. The result will be a doxastic expressivism. Finally, we answer some objections that our doxastic expressivism could seem to face.
10. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Camil Golub Reid on Moral Sentimentalism
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In the Essays on the Active Powers of Man V. 7, Thomas Reid seeks to show “[t]hat moral approbation implies a real judgment,” contrasting this thesis with the view that moral approbation is no more than a feeling. Unfortunately, his criticism of moral sentimentalism systematically conflates two different metaethical views: non-cognitivism about moral thought and subjectivism about moral properties. However, if we properly disentangle the various parts of Reid’s discussion, we can isolate pertinent arguments against each of these views. Some of these arguments, such as the argument from disagreement and the argument from implausible counterfactuals against subjectivism, or the transparency argument against non-cognitivism, still have important roles to play in contemporary metaethics.
11. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Eric Stencil Arnauld's Silence on the Creation of the Eternal Truths
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In the latter half of the seventeenth century, Antoine Arnauld was a public and private defender of many of the central tenets of Cartesianism. Yet, one issue on which he is surprisingly silent is René Descartes’s claim that God freely created the eternal truths (the Creation Doctrine). Despite Arnauld’s evasion of the issue, whether he holds the Creation Doctrine is one of the most contested issues in Arnauld scholarship. In this article I offer an interpretation of Arnauld’s position. I argue that Arnauld does not hold what I call the metaphysical version of the Creation Doctrine according to which God in fact freely created the eternal truths. Rather, he holds what I call the epistemic version of the Creation Doctrine according to which we cannot know whether God freely created the eternal truths.
12. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Filip Grgić Good Luck, Nature, and God: Aristotle's Eudemian Ethics 8.2
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In this paper I argue that the basic form of good luck (eutuchia) that Aristotle identifies in his Eudemian Ethics 8.2 is the divine good luck, which is not also natural good luck, as is commonly assumed by interpreters. The property of being lucky is neither a primitive nor a natural property, nor such that it is based on some natural property, but a property bestowed by god. Hence, the only satisfactory explanation of good luck must be theological. Furthermore, I argue that Aristotle’s account is neutral in regard to character, intellectual, and physical dispositions of those who are subject to good luck.
13. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Philip Swenson, Bradley Rettler Bundle Theory and the Identity of Indiscernibles
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A and B continue their conversation concerning the Identity of Indiscernibles. Both are aware of recent critiques of the principle that haven’t received replies; B summarizes those critiques, and A offers the replies that are due. B then raises a new worry.
book symposium
14. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Anna Alexandrova Précis for A Philosophy for the Science of Well-Being
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15. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Dick Arneson Comments on Anna Alexandrova, A Philosophy for the Science of Well-Being
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16. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Nicole Hassoun Thoughts on Philosophy and the Science of Well-Being
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17. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Jennifer Hawkins Diversity of Meaning and the Value of a Concept: Comments on Anna Alexandrova’s A Philosophy for the Science of Well-Being
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18. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 4
Anna Alexandrova Reply to Hawkins, Hassoun, and Arneson
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articles
19. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 3
Amie L. Thomasson What Can Phenomenology Bring to Ontology?
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“Ontology” is understood and undertaken very differently in the phenomenological tradition than it is in the recent analytic tradition. Here I argue that those differences are not accidental, but instead reflect deeper differences in views about what the proper role and methods for philosophy are. I aim to show that, from a phenomenological perspective, questions about what exists can be answered ‘easily,’ whether through trivial inferences (in the case of ideal abstracta) or (always tentatively, of course) by ordinary empirical means—seeing how our observations hang together. As a result, it can get us away from the obscurities, epistemological mysteries, and skepticism that the neo-Quinean approach to ontology has left us in and provide a clearer and less problematic approach to questions of ontology.
20. Res Philosophica: Volume > 96 > Issue: 3
Daniel Coren Freedom, Gratitude, and Resentment: Olivi and Strawson
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I argue that by attending to a distinction among perspectives on the root causes of our reactive attitudes, we can better understand the bases and limitations of longstanding debates about free will and moral responsibility. I characterize this distinction as “objectivism vs. subjectivism.” I bring out this distinction by first scrutinizing an especially sharp divergence between Peter Strawson and Peter John Olivi. For Olivi, our ordinary human attitudes make it obvious that we have free will, and our attitudes would be senseless if we did not firmly believe that we have free will. For Strawson, reactive attitudes would carry on despite a theoretical acceptance that we lack free will. I apply my distinction to more recent disagreements, such as between Peter van Inwagen and John Martin Fischer/Mark Ravizza. By getting clearer on why we disagree, we can move closer toward a resolution and we can avoid talking past each other.