Cover of The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy
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Displaying: 21-30 of 30 documents

section: contributions to the theory of action
21. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Rob Vanderbeeken Can Intentional and Functional Explanations of Actions Coexist?
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Do functional explanations eclipse the intentionality of human actions? Put differently, do intentional and functional explanations of actions conflict with each other? In this paper, I want to argue that both sorts of explanation, if conceived in a proper way, are compatible instruments. First, I will make a distinction between three kinds of explanatory pluralism of actions: a pluralism of theories of actions, a pluralism of sorts of explanations of actions, and a pluralism of methods for the explanation of actions. Intentional and functional explanations are sorts, not theories or methods, of explanation. Next, I will briefly distinguish intentional and functional explanations: intentional explanations refer to the beliefs and desires of an agent, and functional explanations refer to the function of a motive of an action (etiological functions), or to the function of a result of an action (system functions). Finally, I discuss possible conflicts between both sorts of explanation. In cases where real conflicts between functional and intentional explanations do arise, this is due to the lack of sufficient information or the misinterpretation of information of one or both explanations. Hence, such conflicts are not conflicts between sorts of explanations.
22. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Juha Räikkä When a Person Feels that She Is Guilty and Believes that She Is Not Guilty
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Guilt feelings are an important part of our emotional life that is relevant to moral philosophy, and guilt feelings raise many theoretically interesting questions. One such question is the problem of how it is possible that sometimes people seem to feel guilty because of an act they have committed even if they believe that the act is not wrong and that it does not have any moral costs. A person raised in a religious family may have been taught that going to the theater is wrong, and even if she has rejected this taboo years ago, she may still feel guilty when attending theater. At least, this seems to be the case. If it is the case, then one must explain how it is possible that a person may feel guilty without believing that she is guilty, i.e. that (1) she is responsible for the act and that (2) the act is wrong or has moral costs. Suppose, however, that it is not possible to feel guilty while believing that one is not guilty. Then one must explain why it seems that sometimes—in taboo cases—one can feel that she is guilty and at the same time believe that she is not guilty. In this paper I evaluate some of the usual solutions to the problem and explicate their problems.
23. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Gary Malinas Two Envelope Problems
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When decision makers have more to gain than to lose by changing their minds, and that is the only relevant fact, they thereby have a reason to change their minds. While this is sage advice, it is silent on when one stands more to gain than to lose. The two envelope paradox provides a case where the appearance of advantage in changing your mind is resilient despite being a chimera. Setups that are unproblematically modeled by decision tables that are used in the formulation of the two envelope paradox are described, and variations on them are stipulated. The problems posed by the paradoxical modeling are then contrasted with the variations. The paper concludes with a brief explanation of why the paradoxical modeling does not gain support from the fact that one envelope has twice the amount that is in the other.
section: the human being in this present world
24. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Tista Bagchi Morally Right Action under Silence and Disempowerment
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This paper seeks to address the relationship between two key areas of contention figuring in the communicative realities in which language is used and the morality of action: the role of silence and the role of power and the lack thereof. It is proposed that action per se becomes problematic under practical manifestations of silence such as inarticulacy (which is aggravated by major asymmetries in the global politics of language) and ignorance, and that even when action is possible, deciding on what would constitute morally right action under such circumstances remains a question. Furthermore, another key hindrance to action for greater justice and equality is constituted by lack of empowerment. This paper presents the view that a beginning towards answering such questions can be made on the basis of the recognition of the universality of human creativity, in the domains of both language and constructive action, and the fundamental universality of human morality with culture- and communityspecific modes of putting that morality into practice.
25. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Kristin Andrews Explaining Terrorism
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The official explanations the US gave for the September 11th terrorist attacks are not in fact explanatory, and there has been popular condemnation of those who attempt to offer causal explanations for the attacks. This paper is an investigation of the difficulty people have with finding and accepting explanations for acts they strongly condemn. Using research in the philosophy of mind and moral psychology, I distinguish between explanations for actual immoral behavior and explanations for fictional immoral behavior. The difficulty with accepting the existence of an explanation for an immoral action is based on the difficulty we have identifying with the immoral person. Fiction gives us the narrative required to engage in this imagination, and thus facilitates the construction of explanations. I conclude that rather than being immoral to construct an explanation for the terrorist attacks, it is the first step toward fighting terrorism.
26. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Wang Xinyan Globalization and Common Human Interests
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A series of features of the contemporary globalization of human society, especially its dual positive arid negative effects, shows that contemporary globalization has great significance for the survival and development of mankind as a whole. From the point of view of its deep axiological significance, globalization has resulted in the formation of common human interests that manifest themselves negatively as the emergence of various global problems. The formation of common human interests and the emergence of global problems in turn have objectively introduced a specific norm of value to contemporary global society. This norm of value requires people in the contemporary global society to take common human interests as their value orientation when dealing with the relationship between the human being and the world, if they are to solve various contemporary global problems and make possible the continued survival of mankind and the sustainable development of human society.
27. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Ho Si Quy Globalization and Value Changes in Vietnam
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The main purpose of this paper is to show that under globalization many traditional concepts are no longer acceptable, and may be preconceived. In Vietnam, the system of values Jriend-enemy, success-failure, chance-risk, endogenous-exotic has somehow changed in globalization. Globalization in se marks a new trend, a new change for humankind. A considerable difference in the consumption of goods exists between population strata. The "world of things" owned by the poor has become distant from that owned by the rich to such an extent that no dialogue is possible. But the difference in the consumption of cultural values has to merit concern. This paper displays these value changes in Vietnam in the process of globalization: (a) the value of studiousness and the emphasis on education does not decline, but deviates; (b) the value of "diligence" tends to increase; (c) The value of family and community" tends to diminish. The process of globalization can only be understood in the context of the search for new values, and a critique of globalization is possible if one investigates the very root of the human search for new values: values are values only when they still generate their contributions to solving human problems.
28. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
James F. Perry Peace on Earth, Good Will to Shoes?
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Philosophers are uniquely qualified to negotiate a balance between the reflective potential of globalization and the great routine powers of nations, states, tribes, and families. Here's how we can do it: we can teach the difference between playing a game and choosing a game. From time immemorial people of all tribes and cultures have marked a sharp distinction between those individuals deemed qualified by age, expertise, or status to choose or write the rules, and those other, lesser individuals who are obliged merely to obey those rules. This is the traditional difference between a person, on the one hand, and a utensil, on the other: persona est sui iuris; servus non est persona ("A person chooses its own laws; a slave is not a person"). Persons, but not utensils such as shoes, have, and deserve, good will. To a person, a culture is a means of creating a sustainable humane environment. To a culture, a person is a means for the culture to replicate itself. Placing culture first is a tradition we can no longer afford to maintain, because it makes enduring peace impossible. The purposes utensils can be made to serve have become too terrible (and, with the advent of global communication, too obvious) for the human race to endure, and the capacity of the voiceless to express themselves violently is increasing without limit. Hence we must create new traditions in which we teach all our children reflective thought, with which rules are pragmatically justified rather than unquestionable. To that end I propose to distinguish random, routine, and reflective thought and action. Each of these three levels of thought and action has its costs and its benefits; together they contain the entire range of human possibility. Three familiar philosophical concepts support my claim that reflective thought and action can and must be taught to and learned by all.
29. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
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30. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 9
Name Index
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