The Psychology of Artistic Creativity: An Existential-Phenomenological Study
This ground-breaking book provides a unique insight into artistic creativity that lays the foundation for a new theory. Through a review of documents such as essays, published interviews, lecture notes, and more, the book uses case studies of six contemporary artists to provide a detailed phenomenological study of artistic creativity.
The book offers a narrative account of six contemporary artists and their ways of approaching art-making. Through comprehensive accounts based on the individual artist’s descriptions, the book reveals an existential dimension of art-making that explores the inspirational moment, the state of mind during creativity, how creativity can originate in a spontaneous stream of consciousness, and how emotions play a major role in the creative process. The book sets out a unique understanding of artistic creativity as an alternative to the prevailing cognitive conceptions within psychology.
Offering novel insights into how art is created and can influence the human psyche, the book will primarily appeal to academics, scholars, and post-graduate students within the area of creativity research, psychological aesthetics, and the psychology of art, as well as those with an interest in art and artistic work.
Pride, Politics, and Humility in Augustine's City of God
Cambridge University Press, 2022
This book is the first to interpret and reflect on Augustine’s seminal argument concerning humility and pride, especially in politics and philosophy, in The City of God. Mary Keys shows how contemporary readers have much to gain from engaging Augustine’s lengthy argument on behalf of virtuous humility. She also demonstrates how a deeper understanding of the classical and Christian philosophical-rhetorical modes of discourse in The City of God enables readers to appreciate and evaluate Augustine’s nuanced case for humility in politics, philosophy, and religion. Comprised of a series of interpretive essays and commentaries following Augustine’s own order of segments and themes in The City of God, Keys’ volume unpacks the author’s complex text and elucidates its challenge, meaning, and importance for contemporary readers. It also illuminates a central, yet easily underestimated theme with perennial relevance in a classic work of political thought and religion.
Friedrich Hölderlin: Biographie seiner Jugend
Wallstein Verlag, 2022
Friedrich Hölderlin (1770-1843) wuchs in privilegierten Verhältnissen auf. Sabine Doering deckt anschaulich die Einflüsse auf, die den begabten Heranwachsenden während der Schul- und Studienzeit in Württemberg prägten: Eine Zeit, die ihn auf das Pfarramt vorbereiten sollte, während es ihn zur Dichtung drängte. In kultur-, mentalitäts- und bildungsgeschichtlicher Perspektive werden zahlreiche Briefe und Dokumente zum Sprechen gebracht.
Die Schilderung eines faszinierenden Bildungs- und Reifungsprozesses führt zugleich in eine der interessantesten Epochen der deutschen Kultur- und Geistesgeschichte: Zu Hölderlins Freunden gehörten Hegel und Schelling; Kants Schriften begeisterten ihn; Schiller und andere Dichter verehrte er als Vorbild. Kenntnisreich widerlegt Sabine Doering hartnäckige Legenden, die sich seit langem um Hölderlins Leben ranken, wie seine angebliche Armut oder die Verklärung seiner Liebesverhältnisse. So entsteht das facettenreiche Porträt eines empfindsamen und ehrgeizigen jungen Mannes, der beharrlich seine Berufung zum Dichter verfolgte.
America's Book: The Rise and Decline of a Bible Civilization, 1794-1911
Oxford University Press, 2022
America's Book shows how the Bible decisively shaped American national history even as that history influenced the use of Scripture. It explores the rise of a strongly Protestant Bible civilization in the early United States that was then fractured by debates over slavery, contested by growing numbers of non-Protestant Americans (Catholics, Jews, agnostics), and torn apart by the Civil War.
This first comprehensive history of the Bible in America explains why Tom Paine's anti-biblical tract The Age of Reason (1794) precipitated such dramatic effects, how innovations in printing by the American Bible Society created the nation's publishing industry, why Nat Turner's slave rebellion of 1831 and the bitter election of 1844 marked turning points in the nation's engagement with Scripture, and why Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were so eager to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the King James Version of the Bible.
Noll's magisterial work highlights not only the centrality of the Bible for the nation's most influential religious figures (Methodist Francis Asbury, Richard Allen of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Catholic Bishop Francis Kenrick, Jewish scholar Solomon Schechter, agnostic Robert Ingersoll), but also why it was important for presidents like Abraham Lincoln; notable American women like Harriet Beecher Stowe, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Frances Willard; dedicated campaigners for civil rights like Frederick Douglass and Francis Grimké; lesser-known figures like Black authors Maria Stewart and Harriet Jacobs; and a host of others of high estate and low. The book also illustrates how the more religiously plural period from Reconstruction to the early twentieth century saw Scripture become a much more fragmented, though still significant, force in American culture, particularly as a source of hope and moral authority for Americans on both sides of the battle over white supremacy-both for those hoping to fight it, and for others seeking to justify it.
Contracting for Catastrophe: Legitimizing Emergency Constitutions by Drawing on Social Contract Theory
Res Publica, 2022
States of emergency are declared frequently in all parts of the world. Their declaration routinely implies a suspension of basic constitutional rights. In the last half century, it has become the norm for constitutions to contain an explicit ‘emergency constitution’, i.e., the constitutionally safeguarded rules of operation for a state of emergency. In this paper, I ask whether inclusion of an emergency constitution can be legitimized by drawing on social contract theory. I argue that there are important arguments, both against and in favor of constitutionalized emergency provisions, and that social contract theory—as applied by economists—can be of some help when deciding whether to have, or not to have an emergency constitution. This paper introduces a novel argument for justifying emergency constitutions. It argues that they can serve as a commitment mechanism protecting both citizens and politicians from overreacting to rare but significant threats.
Emergencies: On the Misuse of Government Powers
Public Choice, 2022
Nine out of 10 constitutions contain explicit emergency provisions, intended to help governments cope with extraordinary events that endanger many people or the existence of the state. We ask two questions: (1) does the constitutionalization of emergency provisions help governments to cope with disasters and other extraordinary events? (2) What particular parts of emergency constitutions fare best? We find that the more advantages emergency constitutions confer to the executive, the higher the number of people killed as a consequence of a natural disaster, controlling for its severity. As this is an unexpected result, we discuss a number of potential explanations, the most plausible being that governments use natural disasters as a pretext to enhance their power. Furthermore, the easier it is to call a state of emergency, the larger the negative effects on basic human rights. Interestingly, presidential democracies are better able to cope with natural disasters than parliamentary ones in terms of lives saved, whereas autocracies do significantly worse in the sense that empowerment rights seriously suffer in the aftermath of a disaster.
Towards an Understanding of the Lost Exemplar of Augustine's Soliloquia Consulted by the Translator of the Old English Soliloquies
The Journal of Medieval Latin, 2022
This study examines the textual transmission of Augustine of Hippo’s Soliloquia in the early Middle Ages in order to gain a clearer understanding of the lost manuscript exemplar of the Soliloquia that was consulted by the translator of the Old English Soliloquies around the year 900. Variant readings within the main text of the Soliloquia indicate that this lost exemplar was closely related to two surviving Soliloquia manuscripts: Karlsruhe, Badische Landesbibliothek, MS Aug. CXCV (saec. IXmed., northeastern Francia); and Brussels, KBR, MS 8558-63, part 1 (saec. Xmed., southern England or Mercia). Many of the variant readings and paratextual features of these two codices were present in the Old English translator’s exemplar and led directly to specific features of the Old English Soliloquies that have previously been interpreted as independent interventions by the translator.
From the Holy Roman Empire to the Land of the Tsars: One Family's Odyssey, 1768-1870
Oxford University Press, 2022
In a manuscript in a Russian archive, an anonymous German eyewitness describes what he saw in Moscow during Napoleon’s Russian campaign. Who was this nameless memoirist, and what brought him to Moscow in 1812? The search for answers to those questions uncovers a remarkable story of German and Russian life at the dawn of the modern age.
Johannes Ambrosius Rosenstrauch (1768-1835), the manuscript’s author, was a man always on the move and reinventing himself. He spent half his life in the Holy Roman Empire, and the other half in Russia. He was a barber-surgeon, an actor, and a merchant, as well as a Catholic, a Freemason, and a Lutheran pastor. He saw the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, founded a business that flourished for sixty years, and took part in the Enlightenment, the consumer revolution, the Pietist Awakening, and Russia’s colonization of the Black Sea steppe. A restless wanderer and seeker, but also the progenitor of an influential merchant family, he was a characteristic figure both of the Age of Revolution and of the bourgeois era that followed.
Presenting a broad panorama of life in the German lands and Russia from the Old Regime to modernity, this microhistory explores how individual people shape, and are shaped by, the historical forces of their time.
From Idols to Icons: The Emergence of Devotional Images in Early Christianity
University of California Press, 2022
Even the briefest glance at an art museum’s holdings or an introductory history textbook demonstrates the profound influence of Christian images and art. From Idols to Icons tells the fascinating history of the dramatic shift in Christian attitudes toward sacred images from the third through the early seventh century. From attacks on the cult images of polytheism to the emergence of Christian narrative iconography to the appearance of portrait-type representations of holy figures, this book examines the primary theological critiques and defenses of holy images in light of the surviving material evidence for early Christian visual art. Against the previous assumption that fourth- and fifth-century Christians simply forgot or ignored their predecessors’ censure and reverted to more alluring pagan practices, Robin M. Jensen contends that each stage of this profound change was uniquely Christian. Through a careful consideration of the cults of saints’ remains, devotional portraits, and pilgrimages to sacred sites, Jensen shows how the Christian devotion to holy images came to be rooted in their evolving conviction that the divine was accessible in and through visible objects.
Giotto’s Triumph: The Arena Chapel and the Metaphysics of Ancient Roman Triumphal Arches
I Tatti Studies in the Italian Renaissance, 2022
Positioned on the site of the ancient Roman arena in Padua, Enrico Scrovegni’s family chapel, Santa Maria della Carità, has long been known as the Cappella dell’Arena, or Arena Chapel (figs. 1–5). The interior of the oratory was painted by Giotto in the years after the Roman Jubilee of 1300, following his employment in Rome as court painter for Pope Boniface VIII in the 1290s. Wall to wall, floor to ceiling, the chapel is covered in frescoes that create the illusion of an articulated architectural structure. At the dado level, fictive marble paneling surrounds stony faux relief figures: seven Virtues oppose seven Vices on the two walls of the nave, forming a visual psychomachia. Above these allegorical figures appear scenes from the lives of Mary and Jesus set against a blue ground. Overlooking the fictive architrave, the blue barrel vault carries a pattern of golden stars and medallions with two focal apparitions of Mary and Jesus Christ. Celebrated for centuries, the chapel’s walls have been said to exemplify “the utter finality and absolute density of [Giotto’s] images.” The chapel is “an important contribution to the representation and perception of reality”; the blue of its interior is “Giotto’s joy.”
David and Goliaths: Image of the Enemy in Early Imperial Russian Military Sermons
Canadian-American Slavic Studies, 2022
This article explores the content of wartime sermons in eighteenth-century Russia, delivered by the Orthodox bishops during the pivotal military conflicts of early imperial period. Apart from communicating war aims and current events to the laity, these sermons also presented an image of the enemy to the masses. This imagery manifested bishops’ support for the Petrine and Catherinian cultural opening to the West, on the one hand, while promoting a myth of an existential antagonism against the Ottoman South, on the other. Unlike their seventeenth-century predecessors, eighteenth-century sermons avoided the stereotypes of heterodoxy or heresy when describing Russia’s Western enemies, preferring instead the language of just or unjust wars, protection of European neighbors or the metaphor of David facing titanic Goliaths. The non-sectarian imagery, however, did not extend to Islam. Sermons of the Russo-Ottoman wars presented the conflict as a purely religious and Russia’s involvement as a holy war.
Crowd Cohesion and Protest Outcomes
American Journal of Political Science, 2022
Amidst an unprecedented swell in global protest, scholars and activists wrestle with the question of why protests succeed or fail. I explore a new answer: more cohesive crowds, where protesters agree on their demands, are more likely to win concessions than less cohesive crowds. Drawing on psychology and linguistics, I theorize that cohesive demands are more comprehensible and thus persuasive. I test this theory with a multimethod approach. First, I use cross-national data from 97 protests to estimate the relationship between crowd cohesion and subsequent concessions, applying natural language processing to measure cohesion in participants’ self-reported motivations. Second, a survey experiment in South Africa tests the causal effects of crowd cohesion and assesses comprehensibility of demands as the mechanism driving concessions. Third, case studies of two British protests demonstrate the theory in real-world settings. My findings suggest that activists can improve their odds of success by coordinating around a common goal.
Do Perverse Insurance Incentives Encourage Coastal Vulnerability?
Natural Hazards Review, 2022
Subsidized insurance is often described as a perverse incentive, moral hazard, or maladaptation that perpetuates coastal resi-dencies in vulnerable homes despite increasing safety and economic risks from hurricanes, sea level rise, and other climate change impacts.Insurance is also often described as a positive factor in coastal risk reduction if insurers proactively reward homeowners for upgradesthat mitigate losses from hurricanes. The empirical and policy-relevant question remains whether homeowners perceive insurance incentivesas perverse or positive. A new survey of 662 North Carolina coastal homeowners shows that most are failing to upgrade their homes toaddress hurricane risk or plan for coastal retreat but not because they expect insurance to cover losses. Rather those aware ofinsurance incentives are more likely to live in better-protected residences and take the incentivized actions. Limited awareness of existingpolicies suggests a need for greater outreach by policymakers, lenders, and insurers.
Future Peace: Technology, Aggression, and the Rush to War
Notre Dame Press, 2022
Today’s militaries are increasingly reliant on highly networked autonomous systems, artificial intelligence, and advanced weapons that were previously the domain of science fiction writers. In a world where these complex technologies clash with escalating international tensions, what can we do to decrease the chances of war? In Future Peace, the eagerly awaited sequel to Future War, Robert H. Latiff questions our overreliance on technology and examines the pressure-cooker scenario created by the growing animosity between the United States and its adversaries, our globally deployed and thinly stretched military, the capacity for advanced technology to catalyze violence, and the American public’s lack of familiarity with these topics.
Future Peace describes the many provocations to violence and how technologies are abetting those urges, and it explores what can be done to mitigate not only dangerous human behaviors but also dangerous technical behaviors. Latiff concludes that peace is possible but will require intense, cooperative efforts on the part of technologists, military leaders, diplomats, politicians, and citizens. Future Peace amplifies some well-known ideas about how to address the issues, and provides far-, mid-, and short-term recommendations for actions that are necessary to reverse the apparent headlong rush into conflict. This compelling and timely book will captivate general readers, students, and scholars of global affairs, international security, arms control, and military ethics.
Partial Stories: Maternal Death from Six Angles
The University of Chicago Press, 2022
By the early twenty-first century, about one woman in twelve could expect to die of a pregnancy or childbirth complication in Malawi. Specific deaths became object lessons. Explanatory stories circulated through hospitals and villages, proliferating among a range of practitioners: nurse-midwives, traditional birth attendants, doctors, epidemiologists, herbalists. Was biology to blame? Economic underdevelopment? Immoral behavior? Tradition? Were the dead themselves at fault?
In Partial Stories, Claire L. Wendland considers these explanations for maternal death, showing how they reflect competing visions of the past and shared concerns about social change. Drawing on extended fieldwork, Wendland reveals how efforts to legitimate a single story as the authoritative version can render care more dangerous than it might otherwise be. Historical, biological, technological, ethical, statistical, and political perspectives on death usually circulate in different expert communities and different bodies of literature. Here, Wendland considers them together, illuminating dilemmas of maternity care in contexts of acute change, chronic scarcity, and endemic inequity within Malawi and beyond.
Baptism in the Plural: Ethnographic Notes from a Coptic Ecumene
Journal of the Canadian Society for Coptic Studies, 2022
This article provides an ethnographic account of baptism as it is practiced and understood by Christians living in a multi-denominational Upper Egyptian town. Given the challenges of defining baptism in ecumenical terms, this study approaches the topic in terms of three organizing frameworks: baptism as discourse, as rite, and as reproduction. These overlapping metaphors have the advantage of revealing what has often been overlooked in both Coptic studies and the anthropology of Christianity; namely, the ability of a shared Christian practice like baptism to structure interaction across denominations. This finding has particular relevance for the study of contemporary Copts, which has long been focused on Orthodox Copts to the neglect of Coptic Catholics, Evangelicals, and Pentecostals in Egypt.
Outsourcing Duty: The Moral Exploitation of the American Soldier
Oxford University Press, 2022
Are contemporary soldiers exploited by the state and society that they defend? More specifically, have America's professional service members disproportionately carried the moral weight of America's war-fighting decisions since the inception of an all-volunteer force? In this volume, Michael J. Robillard and Bradley J. Strawser, who have both served in the military, examine the question of whether and how American soldiers have been exploited in this way.
Robillard and Strawser offer an original normative theory of 'moral exploitation'--the notion that persons or groups can be wrongfully exploited by being made to shoulder an excessive amount of moral weight. They make the case that this exploitation accurately describes the relationship between the United States and the members of its military, and offer a thorough and in-depth analysis of some of the exploitative and misleading elements of present-day military recruitment, the moral burdens soldiers often bear, and the stifling effect that a 'Thank You for Your Service' and 'I support the troops' culture has had on serious public engagement about America's ongoing wars. Robillard and Strawser offer a piercing critique of the pernicious divide between military members and the civilians who direct them. They conclude by arguing for several normative and prudential prescriptions to help close this ever-widening fissure between the U.S. and its military, and within the U.S. itself. In so doing, their work gives a much needed and urgent voice to America's soldiers, the other 1%.
Radical Moves from the Margins: ‘Enslaved Entertainments’ and Harvest Celebrations in Northeastern Brazil
Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2022
This collection of essays poses a series of questions revolving around nonsense, cacophony, queerness, race, and the dancing body. How can flamenco, as a diasporic complex of performance and communities of practice frictionally and critically bound to the complexities of Spanish history, illuminate theories of race and identity in performance? How can we posit, and argue for, genealogical relationships within and between genres across the vast expanses of the African—and Roma—diaspora? Neither are the essays presented here limited to flamenco, nor, consequently, are the responses to these questions reduced to this topic. What all the contributions here do share is the wish to come together, across disciplines and subject areas, within the academy and without, in the whirling, raucous, and messy spaces where the body is free—to celebrate its questioning, as well as the depths of the wisdom and knowledge it holds and sometimes reveals.
Augustine on Memory
Oxford University Press, 2021
Augustine of Hippo, indisputably one of the most important figures for the study of memory, is credited with establishing memory as the inner source of selfhood and locus of the search for God. Yet, those who study memory in Augustine have never before taken into account his preaching. His sermons are the sources of memory’s greatest development for Augustine. In Augustine’s preaching, especially on the Psalms, the interior gives way to communal exterior. Both the self and search for God are re-established in a shared Christological identity and the communal labors of remembering and forgetting.
This book opens with Augustine’s early works and Confessions as the beginning of memory and concludes with Augustine’s Trinity and preaching on Psalm 50 as the end of memory. The heart of the book, the work of memory, sets forth how ongoing remembering and forgetting in Christ are for Augustine are foundational to the life of grace. To that end, Augustine and his congregants go leaping in memory together, keep festival with abiding traces, and become forgetful runners like St. Paul. Remembering and forgetting in Christ, the ongoing work of memory, prove for Augustine to be actions of reconciliation of the distended experiences of human life-of praising and groaning, labouring and resting, solitude and communion. Augustine on Memory presents this new communal and Christological paradigm not only for Augustinian studies, but also for theologians, philosophers, ethicists, and interdisciplinary scholars of memory.
Pushkin's Poetic Imagination
Academic Studies Press, 2021
This new study focuses on aspects of Pushkin’s poetic imagination that challenge the conventional view of his aesthetics as the epitome of simplicity, harmony and clarity. What emerges is a new understanding of Pushkin as a poet who was constantly, uncomfortably aware that the demands of his art entailed the transgression of aesthetic and ethical as well as social and political norms, and who did not shy away from this knowledge. His work is thus characterized throughout by morally laden ambiguity and a preoccupation with matters of responsibility, guilt, and conscience.
'Devout Contemplation and Sublime Fancy' of the Cambridge Platonists and Their Legacy Book Chapter
This collection provides the first in-depth introduction to the theory of the religious imagination put forward by renowned philosopher Douglas Hedley, from his earliest essays to his principal writings. Featuring Hedley’s inaugural lecture delivered at Cambridge University in 2018, the book sheds light on his robust concept of religious imagination as the chief power of the soul’s knowledge of the Divine and reveals its importance in contemporary metaphysics, ethics and politics.
Chapters trace the development of the religious imagination in Christian Platonism from Late Antiquity to British Romanticism, drawing on Origen, Henry More and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, before providing a survey of alternative contemporary versions of the concept as outlined by Karl Rahner, René Girard and William P. Alston, as well as within Indian philosophy. By bringing Christian Platonist thought into dialogue with contemporary philosophy and theology, the volume systematically reveals the relevance of Hedley’s work to current debates in religious epistemology and metaphysics. It offers a comprehensive appraisal of the historical contribution of imagination to religious understanding and, as such, will be of great interest to philosophers, theologians and historians alike.
Why Are There Still Creationists?: Human Evolution and the Ancestors
The evidence for the ancestry of the human species among the apes is overwhelming. But the facts are never “just” facts. Human evolution has always been a value-laden scientific theory and, as anthropology makes clear, the ancestors are always sacred. They may be ghosts, or corpses, or fossils, or a naked couple in a garden, but the idea that you are part of a lineage is a powerful and universal one. Meaning and morals are at play, which most certainly transcend science and its quest for maximum accuracy.
With clarity and wit, Jonathan Marks shows that the creation/evolution debate is not science versus religion. After all, modern anti-evolutionists reject humanistic scholarship about the Bible even more fundamentally than they reject the science of our simian ancestry. Widening horizons on both sides of the debate, Marks makes clear that creationism is a theological, not a scientific, debate and that thinking perceptively about values and meanings should not be an alternative to thinking about science – it should be a key part of it.
Divine Action and Emergence: An Alternative to Panentheism
Notre Dame Press, 2021
As a middle path between classical theism and pantheism, the panentheistic turn in the twentieth century has been described as a “quiet revolution.” Today, in fact, many theologians hold that the world is “in” God (who, at the same time, is more than the world). Panentheism has been especially influential in the dialogue between theology and the natural sciences. Many have seen panentheism as compatible with emergentism, and thus have brought the two together in developing models of divine action that do not abrogate the regularities of processes of the natural world. In Divine Action and Emergence, Mariusz Tabaczek argues that, as inspiring and intriguing as emergentist panentheism is, it requires deeper examination. He begins by looking at the wonder of emergence (which calls into question the overly reductionist attitude in natural science) and by reflecting philosophically on emergence theory in light of classical and new Aristotelianism. Moving in a theological direction, Tabaczek then offers a critical evaluation of emergentist panentheism and a constructive proposal for how to reinterpret the idea of divine action as inspired by the theory of emergence with reference to the classical Aristotelian-Thomistic understanding of God’s action in the universe.
Through a unique interdisciplinary approach that puts theology and the natural sciences into a dialogue through philosophy, Divine Action and Emergence offers a comprehensive evaluation of panentheism. It then puts forward an original reinterpretation of emergence theory, thus setting forth a constructive proposal for reinterpreting the concept of divine action that is currently espoused by emergence theory. It will appeal to scholars of theology and philosophy, those who work in the area of theology and science, those interested in emergence theory or panentheism, and finally those who are interested in the dialogue between the classical Aristotelian-Thomistic tradition and contemporary philosophy and theology.
The Splendid Idolatry of Nationalism
PRO PUBLICO BONO – Public Administration, 2021
This article addresses the question ‘Do we live in a secular, disenchanted world devoid of gods, or do we live in a world populated by new gods?’ Some cite Max Weber in assuming that disenchantment is a fact. Others cite Émile Durkheim who points to ongoing forms of enchantment and the development of new religious forms to take the place of Christianity. In this article I use the case of nationalism to examine this question. I analyse two arguments, one that sides with Weber, the other with Durkheim. I not only side with Durkheim, but argue that Weber sides with Durkheim, too. I then go beyond Durkheim, and argue, from a Christian theological point of view, that nationalism is not only a religion, but an idolatrous one at that.
United We Stand, Divided We Fall? How Signals of Activist Cohesion Affect Attraction to Advocacy Organizations
Interest Groups & Advocacy, 2021
Advocacy organizations—such as political parties, political action committees, and interest groups—have the potential to shape public policy and opinion. But to realize that potential, they must mobilize participants, sympathy, and funding. This article explores whether advocacy organizations gain more support when they signal greater cohesion. A conjoint experiment tests the effects of member cohesion, along with other attributes including group size and use of violent tactics, on people’s attraction to hypothetical organizations that were founded to elect candidates from their preferred political party (in this study, the Democratic Party). Results show that Americans who identify as Democrats are more likely to join, donate to, and generally feel positive toward cohesive organizations, but will embrace those with heterogeneous goals so long as members do not actively disagree with one another. These findings can inform the strategies of “intersectional” advocacy organizations that assemble people of diverse and sometimes conflicting interests.
The Mereology of Thomas Aquinas
Philosophy Compass, 2021
This article gives an overview of the mereological thought of the medieval philosopher and theologian Saint Thomas Aquinas. Until the 20th century mereology—the study of the relationship of whole and part—was not generally recognized as a distinct domain of philosophy and so Aquinas, like most of his contemporaries, has no single systematic treatment of it as a topic in its own right. However, a cohesive account of part-whole relations can be pieced together from the various metaphysical, ethical and theological contexts in which Aquinas deals with mereological issues. In this article, I give an account of both Aquinas’s conceptual understanding of composition and his taxonomy of the different kinds of wholes and parts that there are. I end with comments on three marginal cases of mereological relationships in Aquinas’s philosophy.
The Sphinx at the Crossroads: Transcendentalism Meets the Anthropocene
ESQ: A Journal of Nineteenth-Century American Literature and Culture, 2021
“Think we must.” So urges Donna Haraway in her recent book titled Staying with the Trouble (2016). But what is it that we must think, and what is “the trouble” we must stay with rather than run from, the trouble that must activate us to think anew? Haraway’s target is “those old saws of Western philosophy and political economics” that insist on human exceptionalism, centering the autonomous human actor while sending the natural environment to the background. Her “we”—that is, we who call ourselves humanists—must step up and own the resulting trouble, because while we have delayed and dithered, reluctant to give up our outdated tools, our partners in the biological sciences have tossed out the “old saws” as “seriously unthinkable—not available to think with,” and taken up new approaches capable of capturing the “overflowing richness” of planetary life and of moving nimbly across scale levels, from the microscopic multispecies symbioses that make possible our most basic bodily existence, to the long-unknown, richly networked communicative resources of plant life, to Gaia as a figure for the planetary processes studied by Earth System Sciences.
The World Soul in American Transcendentalism Book Chapter
Oxford University Press, 2021
American Transcendentalism, a religious, literary, and social reform movement whose acknowledged leader was Ralph Waldo Emerson, characteristically deployed world soul thinking to harmonize Protestant individualism with Deist rationalism and modern science. Emerson’s “Over-Soul,” whose sources include Platonism, German Idealism, and the transcendental anatomy of Georges Cuvier, enabled the Transcendentalists to distance themselves from orthodox theism by turning God’s magisterial law from outer command into inner creative principle, based on the fundamental concept that all human beings (and, for some, all life) share an inner divine principle that radiates meaning into the world. This chapter draws on William James, who analyzed world soul thinking in terms of the varieties of transcendentalism: this lens suggests that for many Transcendentalists, Emerson’s idealist, absolute monism yielded to a range of pluralist and materialist variants, as seen in Orestes Brownson, Margaret Fuller, Henry David Thoreau, and the radical pluralism of William James himself.
Portraits of Wollstonecraft
Mary Wollstonecraft’s watershed contribution to theories of women’s human rights and her international reception by both Western and non-Western intellectuals has ensured she continues to shape contemporary human rights debates around the world. Bringing together over 100 individual responses to Wollstonecraft’s life and work, Portraits of Wollstonecraft documents her international and cross-cultural reception from the late 18th-century to the early 21st-century.
Reflecting on over two centuries of responses to her political ideas, writing, and philosophy, it counters the persistent myth that she ceased to be read in the aftermath of the publication of her husband William Godwin’s scandalous posthumous Memoirs of her life in 1798. Beginning with her earliest portraiture and the first reviews of her published writings from the late 1780s, Volume I traces her emergence as an international public figure of women’s rights in her life, work, and philosophical, literary, and artistic reception throughout Britain, Ireland, Continental Europe, North and South America, and across the British Empire and its former colonies from Jamaica to India to South Africa. Volume II focuses on Wollstonecraft’s posthumous philosophical, literary, and artistic reception, especially within modern strands of feminism, by assembling responses from China, Japan, and South Korea as well as writing by Mary Shelley, Emma Goldman, Ruth Benedict, Virginia Woolf, Simone de Beauvoir, Betty Friedan, Susan Moller Okin, Barbara Johnson, Martha Nussbaum, and Amartya Sen that discusses her theories of virtue, love, gender, education, and rights.
Bringing to light many forgotten accounts and images of Wollstonecraft, pieces by major thinkers from across the history of philosophy, and 31 annotated illustrations showing her development into a feminist icon, Portraits of Wollstonecraft achieves what no other work on Wollstonecraft has yet to do. This comprehensive collection charts the depth and breadth of her legacies for philosophy, political theory, ethics, literature, art, and feminism on a global scale.
Rivers of the Sultan: The Tigris and Euphrates in the Ottoman Empire
Oxford University Press, 2021
Rivers of the Sultan offers a history of the Ottoman Empire’s management of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in the early modern period. During the early sixteenth century, a radical political realignment in West Asia placed the reins of the Tigris and Euphrates in the hands of Istanbul. The political unification of the longest rivers in West Asia allowed the Ottoman state to rebalance the natural resource disparity along its eastern frontier. It regularly organized the shipment of grain, metal, and timber from upstream areas of surplus in Anatolia and the Jazira to downstream areas of need in Iraq. This imperial system of waterborne communication, the book argues, created heavily militarized fortresses that anchored the Ottoman presence in Iraq, enabling Istanbul to hold in check foreign and domestic challenges to its authority and to exploit the organic wealth of the Tigris-Euphrates alluvium. From the end of the seventeenth century, the convergence of natural and human disasters transformed the Ottoman Empire’s relationship with its twin rivers. A trend toward provincial autonomy ensued that would localize the Ottoman management of the Tigris and Euphrates and shift its command post from Istanbul to the provinces. By placing a river system at the center of analysis, this book reveals intimate bonds between valley and mountain, water and power in the early modern world.
Sediment of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers: An Early Modern Perspective
Water History, 2021
Sediment deposition by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers created the physical landscape on which the civilizations of ancient Iraq evolved. Scholars in the past century have combined material with textual evidence to capture the complexity of this sedimentary context and assess its role in human history over the long term. This essay uses untapped archival sources generated by the Ottoman Empire to shine a new light on the subject, emphasizing the impact of sedimentation on irrigation agriculture and channel movement during the early modern period. Ottoman documents, moreover, improve our understanding of how states and societies adapted to the opportunities and challenges provided by sediment transport. In their capacity as giant conduits for sedimentary movement, the Tigris and Euphrates formed selective pressures on the Ottoman state in Iraq that shaped and was reshaped by it. For the study of river systems worldwide, the early modern history of the Tigris and Euphrates reveals the utility of taking fluvial sediment into account when analyzing other hydrological processes such as avulsion.
Codifying Credit: Everyday Contracting and the Spread of the Civil Code in Nineteenth-Century Mexico
Law and History Review, 2021
Between the 1870s and the 1910s, municipal court officials in southernmost Mexico recorded contracts regarding small debts and credits in what they labeled libros de conocimientos. While only very rarely citing Mexico’s new civil codes of the 1870s and 1880s, the contracts contained in these registers regularly engaged with the kinds of agreements, guarantees, and enforcement mechanisms laid out in the code. They also capture an active, if still elusive, quotidian credit market for the far from well-to-do. This article uses these registers to trace the creation and evolution of Mexico’s civil code from the periphery of the country rather than its center. By looking at the ways farmers, smalltime merchants, housewives, and laborers made use of its forms and norms, we can see how liberal economic policy permeated society through use. The determination of everyday people to make good on the protections and possibilities of liberalized fiscal policy cemented that policy in everyday practice.
The Slow Fall of Babel: Languages and Identities in Late Antique Christianity
Cambridge University Press, 2021
This is the story of the transformation of the ways in which the increasingly Christianized elites of the late antique Mediterranean experienced and conceptualized linguistic differences. The metaphor of Babel stands for the magnificent edifice of classical culture that was about to reach the sky, but remained self-sufficient and self-contained in its virtual monolingualism – the paradigm within which even Latin was occasionally considered just a dialect of Greek. The gradual erosion of this vision is the slow fall of Babel that took place in the hearts and minds of a good number of early Christian writers and intellectuals who represented various languages and literary traditions. This step-by-step process included the discovery and internalization of the existence of multiple other languages in the world, as well as subsequent attempts to incorporate their speakers meaningfully into the holistic and distinctly Christian picture of the universe.
Intention and Wrongdoing: In Defense of Double Effect
Cambridge University Press, 2021
According to the principle of double effect, there is a strict moral constraint against bringing about serious harm to the innocent intentionally, but it is permissible in a wider range of circumstances to act in a way that brings about harm as a foreseen but non-intended side effect. This idea plays an important role in just war theory and international law, and in the twentieth century Elizabeth Anscombe and Philippa Foot invoked it as a way of resisting consequentialism. However, many moral philosophers now regard the principle with hostility or suspicion. Challenging the philosophical orthodoxy, Joshua Stuchlik defends the principle of double effect, situating it within a moral framework of human solidarity and responding to philosophical objections to it. His study uncovers links between ethics, philosophy of action, and moral psychology, and will be of interest to anyone seeking to understand the moral relevance of intention.
Click for Work: Rethinking Work Through Online Work Distribution Platforms
ephemera: theory & politics in organization, 2020
Online work distribution platforms such as Amazon Mechanical Turk or Uber alter how work tasks are chosen or assigned. Put succinctly, instead of the employer choosing the employee, the worker chooses the task. Responses to these new technological possibilities for distributing tasks are all deeply influenced by the contemporary historical moment, which privileges approaches to workers that take them to be neoliberal market actors. In this article, we examine how these platforms interact with current ideas about work and contemporary configurations of work by altering the ways work is accomplished both within and outside of an organization through open calls. In particular, we focus on the challenges these platforms bring to the problems of coordination ever-present in any project of designing the work, disseminating the work, and controlling the work process.
Ludwig Wittgenstein on Rationalism
Palgrave Macmillan, 2020
If “rationalism” refers to the thesis that there is a right way to do whatever it is that we do—a way that we, with our reason, can discover—then Ludwig Wittgenstein is a critic of rationalism. For our words and deeds are justified only by the rules of particular language-games—but these language-games are themselves justified only insofar as they meet our needs; certainly none of them need be justified by reference to any of the others. Together, our language-games constitute our form of life; though this form of life is not entirely arbitrary—some of its features can be explained by reference to our nature—nonetheless, it could be different in many ways. Indeed, it has been—and therefore probably will be—different in many ways; on some level, we all know this. Philosophy at its worst is the attempt to forget it; philosophy at its best is, therefore, the attempt to remember it.
Governing New Frontiers in the Information Age: Toward Cyber Peace
Cambridge University Press, 2020
Many pressing environmental and security threats now facing the international community may be traced to the frontiers. From climate change and cyber-attacks to the associated challenges of space weaponization and orbital debris mitigation, solutions to all of these issues have at their root some form of regulation over the ‘global commons’. Yet governance over these spaces is now transitioning away from multilateral treaties to regional and bilateral accords. This book makes an original contribution by comparing and contrasting some of the principal issues facing the frontiers. It analyzes how and why existing governance structures are often failing to adequately meet global collective action problems, with special coverage on cybersecurity and Internet governance. It proposes a new way forward incorporating lessons from successful regimes as well as the interdisciplinary scholarship on polycentric governance, arguing that multi-stakeholder collaboration is imperative in order to avoid tragedies of the global commons.
Infidels and Empires in a New World Order: Early Modern Spanish Contributions to International Legal Thought
Cambridge University Press, 2020
Before international relations in the West, there were Christian-infidel relations. Infidels and Empires in a New World Order decenters the dominant story of international relations beginning with Westphalia in 1648 by looking a century earlier to the Spanish imperial debate at Valladolid addressing the conversion of native peoples of the Americas. In addition to telling this crucial yet overlooked story from the colonial margins of Western Europe, this book examines the Anglo-Iberian Atlantic to consider how the ambivalent status of the infidel other under natural law and the law of nations culminating at Valladolid shaped subsequent international relations in explicit but mostly obscure ways. From Hernán Cortés to Samuel Purchas, and Bartolomé de las Casas to New England Puritans, a host of unconventional colonial figures enter into conversation with Francisco de Vitoria, Hugo Grotius, and John Locke to reveal astonishing religious continuities and dissonances in early modern international legal thought with important implications for contemporary global society.
Kantian Subjects: Critical Philosophy and Late Modernity
Oxford University Press, 2020
In this volume, Karl Ameriks explores ‘Kantian subjects’ in three senses. In Part I, he first clarifies the most distinctive features-such as freedom and autonomy-of Kant’s notion of what it is for us to be a subject. Other chapters then consider related ‘subjects’ that are basic topics in other parts of Kant’s philosophy, such as his notions of necessity and history. Part II examines the ways in which many of us, as ‘late modern,’ have been highly influenced by Kant’s philosophy and its indirect effect on our self-conception through successive generations of post-Kantians, such as Hegel and Schelling, and early Romantic writers such as Holderlin, Schlegel, and Novalis, thus making us ‘Kantian subjects’ in a new historical sense. By defending the fundamentals of Kant’s ethics in reaction to some of the latest scholarship in the opening chapters, Ameriks offers an extensive argument that Holderlin expresses a valuable philosophical position that is much closer to Kant than has generally been recognized. He also argues that it was necessary for Kant’s position to be supplemented by the new conception, introduced by the post-Kantians, of philosophy as fundamentally historical, and that this conception has had a growing influence on the most interesting strands of Anglophone as well as Continental philosophy.
Freedom: An Unruly History
Harvard University Press, 2020
We tend to think of freedom as something that is best protected by carefully circumscribing the boundaries of legitimate state activity. But who came up with this understanding of freedom, and for what purposes? In a masterful and surprising reappraisal of more than two thousand years of thinking about freedom in the West, Annelien de Dijn argues that we owe our view of freedom not to the liberty lovers of the Age of Revolution but to the enemies of democracy.
The conception of freedom most prevalent today—that it depends on the limitation of state power—is a deliberate and dramatic rupture with long-established ways of thinking about liberty. For centuries people in the West identified freedom not with being left alone by the state but with the ability to exercise control over the way in which they were governed. They had what might best be described as a democratic conception of liberty.
Understanding the long history of freedom underscores how recently it has come to be identified with limited government. It also reveals something crucial about the genealogy of current ways of thinking about freedom. The notion that freedom is best preserved by shrinking the sphere of government was not invented by the revolutionaries of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries who created our modern democracies—it was invented by their critics and opponents. Rather than following in the path of the American founders, today’s “big government” antagonists more closely resemble the counterrevolutionaries who tried to undo their work.
From Slave Cabins to the White House: Homemade Citizenship in African American Culture
University of Illinois Press, 2020
Koritha Mitchell analyzes canonical texts by and about African American women to lay bare the hostility these women face as they invest in traditional domesticity. Instead of the respectability and safety granted white homemakers, black women endure pejorative labels, racist governmental policies, attacks on their citizenship, and aggression meant to keep them in “their place.”
Tracing how African Americans define and redefine success in a nation determined to deprive them of it, Mitchell plumbs the works of Frances Harper, Zora Neale Hurston, Lorraine Hansberry, Toni Morrison, Michelle Obama, and others. These artists honor black homes from slavery and post-emancipation through the Civil Rights era to “post-racial” America. Mitchell follows black families asserting their citizenship in domestic settings while the larger society and culture marginalize and attack them, not because they are deviants or failures but because they meet American standards.
Powerful and provocative, From Slave Cabins to the White House illuminates the links between African American women’s homemaking and citizenship in history and across literature.
Everettian probabilities, the Deutsch-Wallace theorem, and the Principal Principle
This paper is concerned with the nature of probability in physics, and in quantum mechanics in particular. It starts with a brief discussion of the evolution of Itamar Pitowsky’s thinking about probability in quantum theory from 1994 to 2008, and the role of Gleason’s 1957 theorem in his derivation of the Born Rule. Pitowsky’s defence of probability therein as a logic of partial belief leads us into a broader discussion of probability in physics, in which the existence of objective “chances” is questioned, and the status of David Lewis’ influential Principal Principle is critically examined. This is followed by a sketch of the work by David Deutsch and David Wallace which resulted in the Deutsch-Wallace (DW) theorem in Everettian quantum mechanics. It is noteworthy that the authors of this important decision-theoretic derivation of the Born Rule have different views concerning the meaning of probability. The theorem, which was the subject of a 2007 critique by Meir Hemmo and Pitowsky, is critically examined, along with recent related work by John Earman. Here our main argument is that the DW theorem does not provide a justification of the Principal Principle, contrary to the claims by Wallace and Simon Saunders. A final section analyses recent claims to the effect that the DW theorem is redundant, a conclusion that seems to be reinforced by consideration of probabilities in “deviant” branches of the Everettian multiverse.
Cimabue’s True Crosses in Arezzo & Florence
This essay addresses the issue of materiality in Christian artistic production and its resonance in Western literary scholarship, especially in the context of medieval and early modern Italy. The main examples are several large wooden crucifixes painted by Cimabue and Giotto. These are compared to each other, as well as to sculptural crucifixes, analyzing their material and stylistic makeup in terms suggested by Erich Auerbach’s view of naturalism and Christian literary style history. In the twentieth century, the material history of the crucifixes studied here was impacted by the destruction wrought by the Florentine flood and by the personal history of the scholar experiencing exile. Focusing on the dynamics of trauma and transcendence, this comprehensive approach combines formal, physical, and hermeneutical perspectives that are seldom considered together: naturalism, style, matter, the life of the scholar, and the life of the object. In the end, these levels of production and perception are all interrelated, exceeding limits of material and immaterial connectivity between people and artworks.
The Persistence of Mysticism in Catholic Europe: France, Italy, and Germany, 1500-1675
The Crossroad Publishing Company, 2020
The Persistence of Mysticism in Catholic Europe is intended to complete the account of Early Modern mysticism of the period 1500-1650/1675 found in The Presence of God. Part 1 dealt with mysticism in the Reformation, while Part 2 treated Spanish mysticism. This volume deals with the other Catholic areas, concentrating on France.
The Reichsrat in 1917/18 and the Beginning of the First Republic
Contemporary Austrian Studies, 2020
The essays in this volume are dedicated to the ups and downs of 100 years of Austrian democracy. On the occasion of the founding of the First Austrian Republic on November 12, 1918, Austrians celebrated the 100th anniversary of this event in recent Austrian history. Due to the deep divisions of the Austrian political camps (parties) democratic governance was troubled in the 1920s and ended in authoritarian rule in 1933. After World War II, the two principal political parties ÖVP (Christian conservatives) and SPÖ (Socialists), learned to work with one another in grand coalition governments and established a stable democratic regime. With the “Freedom Party” (FPÖ) turning populist, xenophobic and anti-European Union, paired with the arrival of new parties such as the environmentalist/progressive “Greens,” the Austrian party system realigned in 1986 and new center-right coalitions (ÖVP and FPÖ) came to govern Austria. Today political campaigns in Austria, too, are run on social media and millennials have less faith in democracy.
A Spiritual Revolution: The Impact of Reformation and Enlightenment in Orthodox Russia
University of Wisconsin Press, 2020
The ideas of the Protestant Reformation, followed by the European Enlightenment, had a profound and long-lasting impact on Russia’s church and society in the eighteenth century. Though the Orthodox Church was often assumed to have been hostile toward outside influence, Andrey V. Ivanov’s study argues that the institution in fact embraced many Western ideas, thereby undergoing what some observers called a religious revolution.
Embedded with lively portrayals of historical actors and vivid descriptions of political details, A Spiritual Revolution is the first large-scale effort to fully identify exactly how Western thought influenced the Russian Church. These new ideas played a foundational role in the emergence of the country as a modernizing empire and the rise of the Church hierarchy as a forward-looking agency of institutional and societal change. Ivanov addresses this important debate in the scholarship on European history, firmly placing Orthodoxy within the much wider European and global continuum of religious change.
Escape from Rome: Teofan Prokopovych and Ukrainian Orthodox Ties to the Eternal City, 1650-1721
Harvard Ukrainian Studies, 2020
For most people, a sojourn in Rome does not result in the life-changing event of becoming a religious reformer. The story of Teofan Prokopovych, a Kyivan student in the Eternal City in the late 1690s, stands out as a lesser-known exception to that overall trend, the most famous case being the visit by a young monk Martin Luther in 1511. Although hundreds of Ukrainian Orthodox believers sought Catholic education abroad at the time, Prokopovych’s “scandal” in Rome, was a paradigm-shifting experience that served as a catalyst for subsequent church reform in Ukraine and Russia. This reform ended the dissimulative practice of seeking education in Catholic schools and turned more Ukrainians towards the universities and theological curriculum of Protestant Europe. Having run away from Rome, Ukrainian Orthodoxy turned to Pietist Halle, under the watchful guidance of Prokopovych and other reforming hierarchs of the Holy Synod.
Religion: A Very Short Introduction
Oxford University Press, 2020
Religion plays a central role in human experience. Billions of people around the world practice a faith and act in accordance with it. Religion shapes how they enter the world and how they leave it - how they eat, dress, marry, and raise their children. It shapes their assumptions about who they are and who they want to be. Religion also identifies insiders and outsiders, who has power and who doesn’t. It sanctifies injustice and combats it. It draws national borders. It affects law, economy, and government. It destroys and restores the environment. It starts wars and ends them. Whether you notice it or not, religion plays a role in how billions conduct their lives. We are called, then, to understand this important factor in human life today.
Beginning with the first signs of religion among ancient humans and concluding with a look at modern citizens and global trends, leading scholar Thomas Tweed examines this powerful and enduring force in human society. Tweed deftly documents religion as it exists around the world, addressing its role in both intensifying and alleviating contemporary political and environmental problems, from armed conflict to climate change. Religion: A Very Short Introduction offers a concise non-partisan overview of religion’s long history and its complicated role in the world today.
The Daily Henry David Thoreau: A Year of Quotes from the Man Who Lived in Season
The University of Chicago Press, 2020
Modernity rules our lives by clock and calendar, dividing the stream of time into units and coordinating every passing moment with the universal globe. Henry David Thoreau subverted both clock and calendar, using them not to regulate time’s passing but to open up and explore its presence. This little volume thus embodies, in small compass, Thoreau’s own ambition to “live in season”—to turn with the living sundial of the world, and, by attuning ourselves to nature, to heal our modern sense of discontinuity with our surroundings.
Ralph Waldo Emerson noted with awe that from flowers alone, Thoreau could tell the calendar date within two days; children remembered long into adulthood how Thoreau showed them white waterlilies awakening not by the face of a clock but at the first touch of the sun. As Thoreau wrote in Walden, “Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in. I drink at it; but while I drink I see the sandy bottom and detect how shallow it is.”
Drawn from the full range of Thoreau’s journals and published writings, and arranged according to season, The Daily Henry David Thoreau allows us to discover the endless variation and surprise to be found in the repetitions of mundane cycles. Thoreau saw in the kernel of each day an earth enchanted, one he honed into sentences tuned with an artist’s eye and a musician’s ear. Thoreau’s world lives on in his writing so that we, too, may discover, even in a fallen world, a beauty worth defending.
Artificial Life After Frankenstein
University of Pennsylvania Press, 2020
What are the obligations of humanity to the artificial creatures we make? And what are the corresponding rights of those creatures, whether they are learning machines or genetically modified organisms? In seeking ways to respond to these questions, so vital for our age of genetic engineering and artificial intelligence, we would do well to turn to the capacious mind and imaginative genius of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (1797-1851). Shelley’s novels Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus (1818) and The Last Man (1826) precipitated a modern political strain of science fiction concerned with the ethical dilemmas that arise when we make artificial life—and make life artificial—through science, technology, and other forms of cultural change.
In Artificial Life After Frankenstein, Eileen Hunt Botting puts Shelley and several classics of modern political science fiction into dialogue with contemporary political science and philosophy, in order to challenge some of the apocalyptic fears at the fore of twenty-first-century political thought on AI and genetic engineering. Focusing on the prevailing myths that artificial forms of life will end the world, destroy nature, and extinguish love, Botting shows how Shelley modeled ways to break down and transform the meanings of apocalypse, nature, and love in the face of widespread and deep-seated fear about the power of technology and artifice to undermine the possibility of humanity, community, and life itself.
Through their explorations of these themes, Mary Shelley and authors of modern political science fiction from H. G. Wells to Nnedi Okorafor have paved the way for a techno-political philosophy of living with the artifice of humanity in all of its complexity. In Artificial Life After Frankenstein, Botting brings the insights born of Shelley’s legacy to bear upon the ethics and politics of making artificial life and intelligence in the twenty-first century.
Denouncing Secrecy and Defining Democracy in the Early American Republic
Journal of the Early Republic, 2020
Exploring the intense and common critique of secrecy articulated by the Federalists' opponents both before and after ratification, this article sheds new light on the way in which the Constitution left open the question of what it meant to represent the people in government. The article traces how concerns about secrecy were amplified in the early republic, becoming a primary discourse in which Federalist policies were contested and serving as glue that bound former Antifederalists with Democratic-Republicans who had championed ratification, most notably James Madison. The article also examines debates about secrecy to underscore their centrality to the conception and construction of representative democracy. Attitudes about secrecy reflected underlying beliefs about the role of a representative and what made him legitimate as such. By asking why critics identified secrecy as threatening, the article uncovers the way in which political procedures were both reflective and constitutive of ideas about representative government, how it should work, and what made it legitimate.
Rwanda's Inyangamugayo: Perspectives from Practitioners in the Gacaca Transitional Justice Mechanism
Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal, 2020
The Gacaca courts have been the subject of much academic work. Yet, few studies have examined the elected individuals who presided over Gacaca court trials, reflecting a broader paucity of research on local practitioners of transitional justice. Accordingly, this study asks two questions: (1) How did the Gacaca court judges, known as Inyangamugayo, perceive their duties to fight impunity and facilitate reconciliation? And (2) What challenges did the Inyangamugayo face as they sought to implement these duties? To address these questions, we interviewed 135 former Inyangamugayo. Our interviews shed light on the Inyangamugayo’s understandings of punishment and accountability, as well as on their perceptions of reconciliation at personal and societal levels. The interviews also illuminate the problems the Inyangamugayo faced while presiding over trials. Taken together, these findings contribute to scholarship on transitional justice pursuits by highlighting the perceptions and experiences of the individuals who implement transitional justice mechanisms.
Trust: America's Best Chance
Trust is essential to the foundation of America’s democracy, asserts Pete Buttigieg, the former presidential candidate and South Bend mayor. Yet, in a century warped by terrorism, financial collapse, Trumpist populism, systemic racism, and now a global pandemic, trust has been squandered, sacrificed, abused, stolen, or never properly built in the first place. And now, more so than ever before, Americans must work side by side to reckon with the monumental challenges posed by our present moment.
Interweaving history, political philosophy, and affecting passages of memoir, Buttigieg explores the strong relationship between measures of prosperity and levels of social trust. He provides an impassioned account of a threefold crisis of trust: in our institutions, in each other, and in the American project itself. Today, these perilous patterns of distrust have wreaked havoc on nearly every sector of society, as Americans increasingly resent the very government that needs to be part of the solution. With the internet and partisan television networks acting as accelerants, Americans jettison any sense of shared reality, lose confidence in experts and scientists, and cope with the grim national tragedy of a pandemic that has only further exemplified the lethality of distrust.
Buttigieg contends that our success, or failure, at confronting the greatest challenges of the decade—racial and economic justice, pandemic resilience, and climate action—will rest on whether we can effectively cultivate, deepen, and, where necessary, repair the networks of trust that are now endangered, or for so many, have never even existed.
An urgent call to foster an “American way of trust” at this painfully polarized juncture in the nation’s history, Trust is a direct reckoning with the prevailing corruption of social responsibility. Yet refusing to give in to the despair that threatens our foundations, Trust seeks to inspire Americans to build a powerful movement that will define all of us in the years to come.
Undercover Boss's Travels: Comparing the US and UK Reality Shows
Visual Anthropology Review, 2019
Comparing different versions of Undercover Boss reveals how an assemblage of TV producers, camera crews, businesses, and broadcasters choose to portray corporate hierarchies during the financial crisis of 2008 when corporations seemed like especially vulnerable forms of social organization for workers to rely upon. This article approaches the same show done in two different countries as a natural experiment that can reveal national differences through a textual comparison. The US show relies upon a sentimental imagination such that knowledge of the other is based on an emotional connection to the past. The UK show relies upon an organizational imagination in which the structural roles one plays in a company shape what one knows of how the company functions. Each version portrays distinctive approaches to three issues: (1) what can be known about people as social actors; (2) what is portrayed as ethical or appropriate workplace relationships; and (3) what kinds of tacit critiques of contemporary capitalism are possible.
'Those Ancient Forming Powers': Fulke Greville's Dialectic of Idolatry
Oxford University Press, 2019
Fulke Greville has often been described as a Calvinist and even an ‘ultra-Calvinist’, but this pole of his work stands in tension with the neo-Stoical elements of his thought, in which nature is held out as an ideal against artificiality. This chapter reassesses Greville’s political and religious poetry in light of this tension to argue that Greville uses nature as a platform to critique sovereignty as a poetic artefact, which like the idol hides its artificiality in colours of divinity. Further, Greville implicates orthodox Christianity itself in the ideology of sovereign authority, insofar as its denigration of nature serves to obviate the ‘ancient forming powers’ of sovereignty’s human creators. Nevertheless, Greville’s critique, insofar as it is based on a suspicion of art, turns against itself, such that nature, while held out as an ideal, can never be acted upon without betraying and corrupting it.
Rethinking the Russian Orthodox Church and the Bolshevik Revolution
Revolutionary Russia, 2019
This article argues that, since the majority of Russians in 1917 belonged to the Orthodox Church, it is impossible to gain a full picture of the experience of the Revolution without taking into account the fate of Orthodoxy during the Revolution. Nevertheless, there has been no serious reassessment of the Orthodox Church in 1917–18 in English, and as a result most English-language scholars tend to fall back on older scholarship that is still driven by an outdated paradigm that ultimately derives from Soviet propaganda. Key recent Russian work on the subject is discussed to suggest new ways of understanding events. The old paradigm interpreted the Bolsheviks as progressive secularizers and the Church as counter-revolutionary. This article suggests rather that, during the first year of the revolution, both the church and the new state were shifting their policies towards one another until, by the autumn of 1918, the architects of the regime’s policy towards the Church took a hard line against it.
Scripture, Tradition, and Reason in Christian Ethics: Normative Dimensions
Palgrave Macmillan, 2019
How should we understand the relationship between Christian ethics and religious ethics? Among comparative, ethnographic, and normative methodologies? Between confessional and non-confessional orientations, or between theology and philosophy? This volume brings together emerging religious ethicists to engage the normative dimensions of Christian ethics. Focusing on scripture, tradition, and reason, the contributors to this volume argue for a vision of Christian ethics as religious ethics. Toward this end, they engage with scripture, interpretation, and religious practice; examine the putative divide between reason and tradition, autonomy and heteronomy; and offer proposals about the normative characterization of conceptual and practical issues in contemporary religious ethics. Collectively, the volume engages Christian thought to make an argument for the continuing relevance of normative methodologies in contemporary religious and theological ethics.
Talking Like Children: Language and the Production of Age in the Marshall Islands
Oxford University Press, 2019
Children in the Marshall Islands do many things that adults do not. They walk around half naked. They carry and eat food in public without offering it to others. They talk about things they see rather than hiding uncomfortable truths. They explicitly refuse to give. Why do they do these things?
Many think these behaviors are a natural result of children’s innate immaturity. But Elise Berman argues that children are actually taught to do things that adults avoid: to be rude, inappropriate, and immature. Before children learn to be adults, they learn to be different from them. Berman’s main theoretical claim therefore is also a novel one: age emerges through interaction and is a social production.
In Talking Like Children, Berman analyzes a variety of interactions in the Marshall Islands, all broadly based around exchange: adoption negotiations, efforts to ask for or avoid giving away food, contentious debates about supposed child abuse. In these dramas both large and small, age differences emerge through the decisions people make, the emotions they feel, and the power they gain. Berman’s research includes a range of methods – participant observation, video and audio recordings, interviews, children’s drawings – that yield a significant corpus of data including over 80 hours of recorded naturalistic social interaction.
Presented as a series of captivating stories, Talking Like Children is an intimate analysis of speech and interaction that shows what age means. Like gender and race, age differences are both culturally produced and socially important. The differences between Marshallese children and adults give both groups the ability to manipulate social life in distinct but often complementary ways. These differences produce culture itself. Talking Like Children establishes age as a foundational social variable and a central concern of anthropological and linguistic research.
Cult of the Irrelevant: The Waning Influence of Social Science on National Security
Princeton University Press, 2019
To mobilize America’s intellectual resources to meet the security challenges of the post–9/11 world, US Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates observed that “we must again embrace eggheads and ideas.” But the gap between national security policymakers and international relations scholars has become a chasm.
In Cult of the Irrelevant, Michael Desch traces the history of the relationship between the Beltway and the Ivory Tower from World War I to the present day. Recounting key Golden Age academic strategists such as Thomas Schelling and Walt Rostow, Desch’s narrative shows that social science research became most oriented toward practical problem-solving during times of war and that scholars returned to less relevant work during peacetime. Social science disciplines like political science rewarded work that was methodologically sophisticated over scholarship that engaged with the messy realities of national security policy, and academic culture increasingly turned away from the job of solving real-world problems.
In the name of scientific objectivity, academics today frequently engage only in basic research that they hope will somehow trickle down to policymakers. Drawing on the lessons of this history as well as a unique survey of current and former national security policymakers, Desch offers concrete recommendations for scholars who want to shape government work. The result is a rich intellectual history and an essential wake-up call to a field that has lost its way.
Serious Youth in Sierra Leone: An Ethnography of Performance and Global Connection
Oxford University Press, 2019
Generational anxieties over what will happen to the young are unfolding starkly in Sierra Leone, where the civil war that raged between 1991 and 2002–characterized by the extreme youthfulness of the rebel movement–triggered mass fear of that generation being “lost.” Even now, fifteen years later, “children of the war” are regarded with suspicion. These fears stem largely from young people’s easy embrace of globalization, enabled by the flood of international humanitarian aid following the war. Sierra Leone’s increasingly global connectivity has triggered a cultural arms race between adults and their children, with adults often controlling, manipulating, and quashing the ambitions of the young.
Through an investigation of the lives and struggles of Sierra Leonean youth in the northern capital town of Makeni, Serious Youth in Sierra Leone: An Ethnography of Performance and Global Connection turns these fears on their head. Author Catherine Bolten argues that urban youth in Makeni are largely a conservative social force, rather than rebellious or revolutionary–the young want to have steady incomes, start families, and be respected. Adults misrecognize their children’s conservative values and desires as radical because they interpret global engagement as a desire for social upheaval, rather than as a way to be noticed and taken seriously. Bolten articulates the social processes that lead to children–the future of a society–becoming a representation of a society’s deepest anxieties about the destruction of its values and ideologies, and why those might be falsely construed.
Wayward Leviathans: How America's Corporations Lost Their Public Purpose
The Hedgehog Review, 2019
On its glittering surface, America’s corporate economy appears to be in fantastic shape. The stock markets recently reached record highs, even if they dipped and bobbed after reaching those heights. Profits are soaring. Financing is cheap. The corporate tax rate has been cut. The unemployment rate is near a fifty-year low, with little inflation.
But look under the hood, and you will find that all is not well. Those stock prices have little, if anything, to do with underlying value creation; those profits owe little to increased productivity; that cheap financing seldom goes to investment. Despite the record profits and unusually favorable terms for borrowers, the rate of corporate investment is down–by historical standards for such conditions, way down. Productivity growth is down. Wages, adjusted for inflation, have remained largely flat since the 1970s, despite all of labor’s subsequent productivity gains. As a proportion of corporate income, wage expenditure today is at a historic low, even with profits at or near historic highs. Profits that used to be allocated to wage increases, training, research, and expansion are instead being disgorged to stockholders in the form of increased dividends and stock buybacks (which helps explain those rising stock prices). The windfall from the 2017 corporate tax cut went almost entirely to such buybacks, not wages or investment. The number of listed companies is actually declining, in part because entrepreneurs who wish to grow their companies dare not place them under Wall Street’s care, to be bled out for the pleasure of today’s short-term-focused stockholders.
Today’s stockholder is fat and happy from cannibalizing the corporate body. Yet the feast is unlikely to last. There is only so much dining to be done on a host that is not allowed to feed itself. These may be flush times for the American corporation, but the bounty is not being translated into a prosperity that is sustainable or broad. How has the corporation’s vision become so foreshortened? Its largess so narrowly bestowed? Its malfeasance so widespread? Viewed from the perspective of history, the American business corporation has lost its way.
Politics in the Marketplace: Work, Gender, and Citizenship in Revolutionary France
Oxford University Press, 2019
One of the most dramatic images of the French Revolution is of Parisian market women sloshing through mud and dragging cannons as they marched on Versailles and returned with bread and the king. These market women, the Dames des Halles, sold essential foodstuffs to the residents of the capital but, equally important, through their political and economic engagement, held great revolutionary influence.
Politics in the Marketplace examines how the Dames des Halles invented notions of citizenship through everyday trade. It innovatively interweaves the Dames’ political activism and economic practices to reveal how marketplace actors shaped the nature of nascent democracy and capitalism through daily commerce. While haggling over price controls, fair taxes, and acceptable currency, the Dames and their clients negotiated tenuous economic and social contracts in tandem, remaking longstanding Old Regime practices. In this environment, the Dames conceptualized a type of economic citizenship in which individuals’ activities such as buying goods, selling food, or paying taxes positioned them within the body politic and enabled them to make claims on the state. They insisted that their work as merchants served society and demanded that the state pass favorable regulations for them in return. In addition, they drew on their patriotic work as activists and their gendered work as republican mothers to compel the state to provide practical currency and assist indigent families. Thus, their notion of citizenship portrayed useful work, rather than gender, as the cornerstone of civic legitimacy.
In this original work, Katie Jarvis challenges the interpretation that the Revolution launched an inherently masculine trajectory for citizenship and reexamines work, gender, and citizenship at the cusp of modern democracy.
Emergence: Towards a New Metaphysics and Philosophy of Science
Notre Dame Press, 2019
Over the last several decades, the theories of emergence and downward causation have become arguably the most popular conceptual tools in scientific and philosophical attempts to explain the nature and character of global organization observed in various biological phenomena, from individual cell organization to ecological systems. The theory of emergence acknowledges the reality of layered strata or levels of systems, which are consequences of the appearance of an interacting range of novel qualities.
A closer analysis of emergentism, however, reveals a number of philosophical problems facing this theory. In Emergence, Mariusz Tabaczek offers a thorough analysis of these problems and a constructive proposal of a new metaphysical foundation for both the classic downward causation-based and the new dynamical depth accounts of emergence theory, developed by Terrence Deacon. Tabaczek suggests ways in which both theoretical models of emergentism can be grounded in the classical and the new (dispositionalist) versions of Aristotelianism. This book will have an eager audience in metaphysicians working both in the analytic and the Thomistic traditions, as well as philosophers of science and biology interested in emergence theory and causation.
Reading the Hindu and Christian Classics: Why and How Deep Learning Still Matters
University of Virginia Press, 2019
We live in an era of unprecedented growth in knowledge. Never before has there been so great an availability of and access to information in both print and online. Yet as opportunities to educate ourselves have greatly increased, our time for reading has significantly diminished. And when we do read, we rarely have the patience to read in the slow, sustained fashion that great books require if we are to be truly transformed by them.
In Reading the Hindu and Christian Classics, renowned Harvard Divinity School professor Francis Clooney argues that our increasing inability to read in a concerted manner is particularly notable in the realm of religion, where the proliferation of information detracts from the learning of practices that require slow and patient reading. Although awareness of the world’s many religions is at an all-time high, deep knowledge of the various traditions has suffered. Clooney challenges this trend by considering six classic Hindu and Christian texts dealing with ritual and law, catechesis and doctrine, and devotion and religious participation, showing how, in distinctive ways, such texts instruct, teach truth, and draw willing readers to participate in the realities they are learning. Through readings of these seminal scriptural and theological texts, he reveals the rewards of a more spiritually transformative mode of reading—and how individuals and communities can achieve it.
Women’s History in the Age of Reformation: Johannes Meyer’s Chronicle of the Dominican Observance
Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 2019
In his work The Book of the Reformation of the Order of Preachers, the Dominican friar Johannes Meyer (1422–1485) drew on letters, treatises, and other written records, as well as interviews, oral accounts, and his own personal experience, to record the blossoming of the Observant reform movement.
The result is this sprawling, eclectic, yet curiously intimate account of the men – but mostly of the women – who devoted their lives to revitalizing the Dominican order in southern Germany. With his reliance on their accounts and archives and respect for their intellectual abilities and spiritual resolve, Meyer’s treatment of medieval Dominican women provides a model from which today’s historians stand to learn.
The introduction contextualizes Meyer’s celebratory work within a more objective historical background; it is followed by a full translation, making this remarkable history available to English-speaking readers for the first time.
The Poetry and Music of Science: Comparing Creativity in Science and Art
Oxford University Press, 2019
What human qualities are needed to make scientific discoveries, and which to make great art? Many would point to ‘imagination’ and ‘creativity’ in the second case but not the first. This book challenges the assumption that doing science is in any sense less creative than art, music or fictional writing and poetry, and treads a historical and contemporary path through common territories of the creative process. The methodological process called the ‘scientific method’ tells us how to test ideas when we have had them, but not how to arrive at hypotheses in the first place. Hearing the stories that scientists and artists tell about their projects reveals commonalities: the desire for a goal, the experience of frustration and failure, the incubation of the problem, moments of sudden insight, and the experience of the beautiful or sublime.
Selected themes weave the practice of science and art together: visual thinking and metaphor, the transcendence of music and mathematics, the contemporary rise of the English novel and experimental science, and the role of aesthetics and desire in the creative process. Artists and scientists make salient comparisons: Defoe and Boyle; Emmerson and Humboldt, Monet and Einstein, Schumann and Hadamard. The book draws on medieval philosophy at many points as the product of the last age that spent time in inner contemplation of the mystery of how something is mentally brought out from nothing. Taking the phenomenon of the rainbow as an example, the principles of creativity within constraint point to the scientific imagination as a parallel of poetry.
Fashioning the Rest: National Ascription in Austria After the First World War
Indiana University Press, 2019
The settlement of Versailles was more than a failed peace. What was debated at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919–1920 hugely influenced how nations and empires, sovereignty, and the international order were understood after the Great War—and into the present. Beyond Versailles argues that this transformation of ideas was not the work of the treaty makers alone, but emerged in interaction with nationalist groups, anti-colonial movements, and regional elites who took up the rhetoric of Paris and made it their own. In shifting the spotlight from the palace of Versailles to the peripheries of Europe, Beyond Versailles turns to the treaties’ resonance on the ground and shows why the principles of the peace settlement meant different things in different locales. It was in places a long way from Paris—in Polish borderlands and in Portuguese colonies, in contested spaces like Silesia, Teschen and Danzig, and in states emerging from imperial collapse like Austria, Egypt, and Iran—that notions of nation and sovereignty, legitimacy, and citizenship were negotiated and contested.
Living with Animals: Bonds Across Species
Cornell University Press, 2018
Living with Animals is a collection of imagined animal guides—a playful and accessible look at different human-animal relationships around the world. Anthropologists and their co-authors have written accounts of how humans and animals interact in labs, in farms, in zoos, and in African forests, among other places. Modeled after the classic A World of Babies, an edited collection of imagined Dr. Spock manuals from around the world—Living With Animals focuses on human-animal relationships in their myriad forms.
This is ethnographic fiction for those curious about how animals are used for a variety of different tasks around the world. To be sure, animal guides are not a universal genre, so Living with Animals offers an imaginative solution, doing justice to the ways details about animals are conveyed in culturally specific ways by adopting a range of voices and perspectives. How we capitalize on animals, how we live with them, and how humans attempt to control the untamable nature around them are all considered by the authors of this wild read.
If you have ever experienced a moment of “what if” curiosity—what is it like to be a gorilla in a zoo, to work in a pig factory farm, to breed cows and horses, this book is for you. A light-handed and light-hearted approach to a fascinating and nuanced subject, Living with Animals suggests many ways in which we can and do coexist with our non-human partners on Earth.
Undercover Boss Blues
Anthropology Today, 2018
Undercover Boss is a reality TV show designed for and by people who take capitalism for granted and who are reflecting on crises that are part and parcel of what it means to live under a capitalist system. Undercover Boss was first launched on Channel 4 in the UK in 2009, and country-specific spin-offs have since appeared in 16 other countries, including Australia, Colombia and Poland. Like the other variants, the UK version is not only an exploration of workplaces inflected by neo-liberal logics, but also an exploration of how businesses are responding to the financial crisis of 2008. In the UK version, the bosses agree to go undercover in the hope that low-level employees might provide some insights from their structural position into how to improve the way the company responds to its customers. This is a show that revolves around revealing some of the ‘shoulds’ of business from a worker’s perspective, but in doing so, it uncovers a few of the dilemmas generated when corporations put neo-liberal principles into practice.
The Transformative Cultural Intelligence Hypothesis: Evidence from Young Children’s Problem-Solving
Review of Philosophy and Psychology, 2018
This study examined 4-year-olds’ problem-solving under different social conditions. Children had to use water in order to extract a buoyant object from a narrow tube. When faced with the problem ‘cold’ without cues, nearly all children were unsuccessful (Experiment 1). But when a solution-suggesting video was pedagogically delivered prior to the task, most children (69% in Experiment 1, 75% in Experiment 2) succeeded. Showing children the same video in a non-pedagogical manner did not lift their performance above baseline (Experiment 1) and was less effective than framing it pedagogically (Experiments 1 and 2). The findings support ideas central to natural pedagogy (Csibra and Gergely Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 13(4), 148–153, 2009). They also challenge the Cultural Intelligence hypothesis, according to which only humans’ social, but not their physical, cognition differs qualitatively from that of great apes. A more radical, transformative variant of the Cultural Intelligence hypothesis is suggested according to which humans’ physical cognition is shaped by their social nature and must therefore be recognized as equally distinctive as their social cognition.
“Antiscience Zealotry”? Values, Epistemic Risk, and the GMO Debate
Philosophy of Science, 2018
This article argues that the controversy over genetically modified crops is best understood not in terms of the supposed bias, dishonesty, irrationality, or ignorance on the part of proponents or critics, but rather in terms of differences in values. To do this, the article draws on and extends recent work of the role of values and interests in science, focusing particularly on inductive risk and epistemic risk, and it shows how the GMO debate can help to further our understanding of the various epistemic risks that are present in science and how these risks might be managed.
Jubilees: A Commentary in Two Volumes
Fortress Press, 2018
Jubilees—so called because of its concern with marking forty-nine-year periods (or “jubilees”) in Israel’s history—is an ancient rewriting of Genesis and the first part of Exodus from the point of view of an anonymous second-century BCE Jewish author. Its distinctive perspective-as well as its apparent popularity at Qumran-make it particularly important for any reconstruction of early Judaism. James C. VanderKam, the world’s foremost authority on Jubilees, offers a new translation based on his own critical editions of all the available textual evidence, including the Hebrew fragments preserved at Qumran (which he first published in Discoveries in the Judean Desert, vol. 13), as well as the first full running commentary on the book in the English language. Jubilees approaches the book as a rewriting of scripture but also as a literary work in its own right. The commentary explains the text and the teachings of the author with comprehensive coverage of the modern scholarship devoted to them. The introduction sets the book in its second-century BCE context, traces its sources in the Bible and in other early Jewish texts, and describes its influence on Jewish and Christian writers.
Peace in Ancient Egypt
One of the world’s oldest treaties provides the backdrop for a new analysis of the Egyptian concept of hetep (“peace”). To understand the full range of meaning of hetep, Peace in Ancient Egypt explores battles against Egypt’s enemies, royal offerings to deities, and rituals of communing with the dead. Vanessa Davies argues that hetep is the result of action that is just, true, and in accord with right order (maat). Central to the concept of hetep are the issues of rhetoric and community. Beyond detailing the ancient Egyptian concept of hetep, it is hoped that this book will provide a useful framework that can be considered in relation to concepts of peace in other cultures.
Making Mathematical Culture: University and Print in the Circle of Lefevre d'Etaples
Oxford University Press, 2018
In 1503, for the first time, a student in Paris was able to spend his entire university career studying only the printed textbooks of his teacher thanks to the works of the humanist and university reformer Jacques Lefevre d'Etaples (c. 1455-1536). As printed books became central to the intellectual habits of following generations, Lefevre turned especially to mathematics as a way to renovate the medieval university.
Making Mathematical Culture argues this was a pivatol moment in the cultural history of Europe and explores how the rise of the printed book contributed to the growing profile of mathematics in the region. Using student manuscripts and annotated books, Making Mathematical Culture offers a new account of printed textbooks, as jointly made by masters and students, and how such collaborative practices informed approaches to mathematics.
Aquinas and the Market: Toward a Humane Economy
Harvard University Press, 2018
Economists and theologians usually inhabit different intellectual worlds. Economists investigate the workings of markets and tend to set ethical questions aside. Theologians, anxious to take up concerns raised by market outcomes, often dismiss economics and lose insights into the influence of market incentives on individual behavior. Mary L. Hirschfeld, who was a professor of economics for fifteen years before training as a theologian, seeks to bridge these two fields in this innovative work about economics and the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas.
According to Hirschfeld, an economics rooted in Thomistic thought integrates many of the insights of economists with a larger view of the good life, and gives us critical purchase on the ethical shortcomings of modern capitalism. In a Thomistic approach, she writes, ethics and economics cannot be reconciled if we begin with narrow questions about fair wages or the acceptability of usury. Rather, we must begin with an understanding of how economic life serves human happiness. The key point is that material wealth is an instrumental good, valuable only to the extent that it allows people to flourish. Hirschfeld uses that insight to develop an account of a genuinely humane economy in which pragmatic and material concerns matter but the pursuit of wealth for its own sake is not the ultimate goal.
The Thomistic economics that Hirschfeld outlines is thus capable of dealing with our culture as it is, while still offering direction about how we might make the economy better serve the human good.
Personhood in the Byzantine Christian Tradition: Early, Medieval, and Modern Perspectives
Bringing together international scholars from across a range of linked disciplines to examine the concept of the person in the Greek Christian East, Personhood in the Byzantine Christian Tradition stretches in its scope from the New Testament to contemporary debates surrounding personhood in Eastern Orthodoxy. Attention is paid to a number of pertinent areas that have not hitherto received the scholarly attention they deserve, such as Byzantine hymnography and iconology, the work of early miaphysite thinkers, as well as the relevance of late Byzantine figures to the discussion. Similarly, certain long-standing debates surrounding the question are revisited or reframed, whether regarding the concept of the person in Maximus the Confessor, or with contributions that bring patristic and modern Orthodox theology into dialogue with a variety of contemporary currents in philosophy, moral psychology, and political science.
The Cost of Female Citizenship: How Price Controls Gendered Democracy in Revolutionary France
French Historical Studies, 2018
In 1793, the National Convention passed two hallmarks of Jacobin legislation: sweeping price controls called the General Maximum and a ban on women’s political clubs. At the center of both issues were factional clashes among the Montagnards, Girondins, and Enragés, on the one hand, and Parisian market women called the Dames des Halles and the leading women’s club called the Société des Citoyennes Républicaines Révolutionnaires, on the other. Montagnard deputies pointed to marketplace brawls between the Dames and the club women to argue that women were irrational and had no place in formal politics. Consequently, the dominant historiographical narrative frames their ban as codifying Rousseauian gender norms and ideologically stunting women’s citizenship at the outset of French democracy. However, this article analyzes the mechanics of the Maximum to argue that the ban on women’s clubs emerged from contests over price controls, market regulation, and the economic dimensions of citizenship itself.
Iola Leroy; Or, Shadows Uplifted
Broadview Press, 2018
Frances Harper’s fourth novel follows the life of the beautiful, light-skinned Iola Leroy to tell the story of black families in slavery, during the Civil War, and after Emancipation. Iola Leroy adopts and adapts three genres that commanded significant audiences in the nineteenth century: the sentimental romance, the slave narrative, and plantation fiction. Written by the foremost black woman activist of the nineteenth century, the novel sheds light on the movements for abolition, public education, and voting rights through a compelling narrative.
This edition engages the latest research on Harper’s life and work and offers ways to teach these major moments in United States history by centering the experiences of African Americans. The appendices provide primary documents that help readers do what they are seldom encouraged to do: consider the experiences and perspectives of people who are not white. The Introduction traces Harper’s biography and the changing critical perspectives on the novel.
Domesticating a Mystic: Catholic Saint-Making in Weimar Germany
Central European History, 2018
Veneration of Westphalian stigmatic and visionary Anna Katharina Emmerick (1774–1824) reached new heights during the Weimar Republic. German Catholics engaged in promoting her beatification cause organized a multipronged, multimedia campaign. Priests and laypersons, as well as the popular press and theological journals, all encouraged the veneration of Emmerick as “a crucified saint for a crucified Volk.” Memories of Napoleonic French aggression, secularization, and waning religious belief provided revanchist Weimar German Catholics with a readymade narrative of victimization. Moreover, as a poster child of the Westphalian Heimat, her pilgrimage sites offered a spiritual antidote to the “godless” modern city. Meanwhile, everyday Catholics continued a century-old, locally-based tradition of veneration that did not strictly conform to the new “official” line. Emmerick’s Weimar cult, and the modern saint-making process more generally, thus provide a window onto the push and pull between clergy and laity, men and women, institutional and popular forces, in shaping lived German Catholicism in the 1920s.
Reading Religiously Across Religious Borders: A Method for Comparative Study
Oliver Freiberger has done us the great service of drawing our attention to how comparativists do their comparative work. Issues of method—the “methodical aspects”—of course matter greatly in the actual doing of comparison, even if the scholar is not interested in theoretical discussions of method per se. One has to know one’s craft, in order to do it well, and to be clear in practice about how to proceed: “How comparison actually works as a method in the study of religion has not been discussed in greater detail so far. With due deliberation we can, as Freiberger suggests, identify and isolate specific methodical problems, effectively confront wholesale criticism, and find opportunities to refine the methodology. His approach also allows committed comparativists to speak in more depth about what we are doing in our research and writing.
Rites for the Sick and Dying in Sources from Klosterneuburg
The Research Center of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, 2018
This article investigates extant documents from the Augustinian canonry of Klosterneuburg (Codices Claustroneoburgenses 628, 629, 1022A, and 1022B) to gain insight into the community’s rites for the sick and dying. The sources largely agree in the material prescribed for the rites. Scribal annotations and signs of use within the manuscripts indicate that the same rites were used for both the men and women of the double house; the manuscripts’ rubrics also leave open the possibility that men and women participated in the rites together.
Down and Out in the New Economy: How People Find (or Don’t Find) Work Today
The University of Chicago Press, 2017
Finding a job used to be simple. You’d show up at an office and ask for an application. A friend would mention a job in their department. Or you’d see an ad in a newspaper and send in your cover letter. Maybe you’d call the company a week later to check in, but the basic approach was easy. And once you got a job, you would stay—often for decades.
Now … well, it’s complicated. If you want to have a shot at a good job, you need to have a robust profile on LinkdIn. And an enticing personal brand. Or something like that—contemporary how-to books tend to offer contradictory advice. But they agree on one thing: in today’s economy, you can’t just be an employee looking to get hired—you have to market yourself as a business, one that can help another business achieve its goals.
That’s a radical transformation in how we think about work and employment, says Ilana Gershon. And with Down and Out in the New Economy, she digs deep into that change and what it means, not just for job seekers, but for businesses and our very culture. In telling her story, Gershon covers all parts of the employment spectrum: she interviews hiring managers about how they assess candidates; attends personal branding seminars; talks with managers at companies around the United States to suss out regional differences—like how Silicon Valley firms look askance at the lengthier employment tenures of applicants from the Midwest. And she finds that not everything has changed: though the technological trappings may be glitzier, in a lot of cases, who you know remains more important than what you know.
Throughout, Gershon keeps her eye on bigger questions, interested not in what lessons job-seekers can take—though there are plenty of those here—but on what it means to consider yourself a business. What does that blurring of personal and vocational lives do to our sense of our selves, the economy, our communities? Though it’s often dressed up in the language of liberation, is this approach actually disempowering workers at the expense of corporations?
Rich in the voices of people deeply involved with all parts of the employment process, Down and Out in the New Economy offers a snapshot of the quest for work today—and a pointed analysis of its larger meaning.
Language and the Newness of Media
Annual Review of Anthropology, 2017
How is the newness of new media constructed? Rejecting technological determinism, linguistic anthropologists understand that newness emerges when previous strategies for coordinating social interactions are challenged by a communicative channel. People experience a communicative channel as new when it enables people to circulate knowledge in new ways, to call forth new publics, to occupy new communicative roles, to engage in new forms of politics and control—in short, new social practices. Anthropologists studying media have been modifying the analytical tools that linguistic anthropologists have developed for language to uncover when and how media are understood to provide the possibilities for social change and when they are not. Taking coordination to be a vulnerable achievement, I address recent work that elaborates on the ways that linguistic anthropology segments communication to explore how a particular medium offers its own distinctive forms of authorship, circulation, storage, and audiences.
“Not See, Not Hear, Not Speak”: Preschoolers Think They Cannot Perceive or Address Others Without Reciprocity
Journal of Cognition and Development, 2017
A curious phenomenon in early social-cognitive development has been identified: Preschoolers deny that they can see others who cannot also see them (Russell, Gee, & Bullard, 2012). The exclusive focus on vision has suggested that this effect is limited to gaze, but children’s negations might reflect a broader phenomenon that extends to vocal communication. In Experiment 1 (N = 24), 3- to 4-year-olds were asked if they could see an agent whose eyes were covered, hear an agent whose ears were covered, and speak to an agent whose mouth was covered. In all cases, negative responses were more frequent than in a control condition in which the facial area was unoccluded. Experiment 2 (N = 24) provided evidence that children’s negations did not result from a misunderstanding of the questions. The findings suggest that young children apply a principle of reciprocal relatedness that is not limited to gaze.
On the Transformative Character of Collective Intentionality and the Uniqueness of the Human
Philosophical Psychology, 2017
Current debates on collective intentionality focus on the cognitive capacities, attitudes, and mental states that enable individuals to take part in joint actions. It is typically assumed that collective intentionality is a capacity which is added to other, pre-existing, capacities of an individual and is exercised in cooperative activities like carrying a table or painting a house together. We call this the additive account because it portrays collective intentionality as a capacity that an individual possesses in addition to her capacity for individual intentionality. We offer an alternative view according to which the primary entity to which collective intentionality has to be ascribed is not the human individual, but a “form of life.” As a feature of a form of life, collective intentionality is something more than the specific capacity exercised by an individual when she cooperates with others. Collective intentionality transforms all the capacities of the bearers of this specific form of life. We thus call our proposal the transformative account of collective intentionality.
Charles Girard: Relationships and Representation in Nineteenth Century Systematics
Journal of the History of Biology, 2017
Early nineteenth century systematists sought to describe what they called the Natural System or the Natural Classification. In the nineteenth century, there was no agreement about the basis of observed patterns of similarity between organisms. What did these systematists think they were doing, when they named taxa, proposed relationships between taxa, and arranged taxa into representational schemes? In this paper I explicate Charles Frederic Girard’s (1822–1895) theory and method of systematics. A student of Louis Agassiz, and subsequently (1850–1858) a collaborator with Spencer Baird, Girard claimed that natural classificatory methods do not presuppose either a special creationist or an evolutionary theory of the natural world. The natural system, in Girard’s view, comprises three distinct ways in which organisms can be related to each other. Girard analyzed these relationships, and justified his classificatory methodology, by appeal to his embryological and physiological work. Girard offers an explicit theoretical answer to the question, what characters are evidence for natural classificatory hypotheses? I show that the challenge of simultaneously depicting the three distinct types of relationship led Girard to add a third dimension to his classificatory diagrams.
Is Science Racist?
Every arena of science has its own flash-point issues—chemistry and poison gas, physics and the atom bomb—and genetics has had a troubled history with race. As Jonathan Marks reveals, this dangerous relationship rumbles on to this day, still leaving plenty of leeway for a belief in the basic natural inequality of races.
The eugenic science of the early twentieth century and the commodified genomic science of today are unified by the mistaken belief that human races are naturalistic categories. Yet their boundaries are founded neither in biology nor in genetics and, not being a formal scientific concept, race is largely not accessible to the scientist. As Marks argues, race can only be grasped through the humanities: historically, experientially, politically.
This wise, witty essay explores the persistence and legacy of scientific racism, which misappropriates the authority of science and undermines it by converting it into a social weapon.
Metalepsis in Animation: Paradoxical Transgressions of Ontological Levels
Universitätsverlag Winter Heidelberg, 2017
The narratological term metalepsis describes a seemingly paradoxical transgression of narrative or ontological levels that are perceived as mutually exclusive. While metalepsis can be found across a variety of media, it is a specifically important device in animated films and television series. Prominent examples are the hand of the animator reaching into the diegesis of her or his creations or characters escaping into the world of their creators.
Metalepsis in Animation: Paradoxical Transgressions of Ontological Levels explores various functions and uses of metalepses throughout the history of animation and develops models of mental processes that govern their cognitive production and reception.
Turning Points in the History of American Evangelicalism
Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2017
The history of American evangelicalism is perhaps best understood by examining its turning points—those moments when it took on a new scope, challenge, or influence. The Great Awakening, the rise of fundamentalism and Pentecostalism, the emergence of Billy Graham—all these developments and many more have given shape to one of the most dynamic movements in American religious history. Taken together, these turning points serve as a clear and helpful roadmap for understanding how evangelicalism has become what it is today.
Each chapter in this book has been written by one of the world’s top experts in American religious history, and together they form a single narrative of evangelicalism’s remarkable development. Here is an engaging, balanced, coherent history of American evangelicalism from its origins as a small movement to its status as a central player in the American religious story.
Women, Enlightenment and Catholicism: A Transnational Biographical History
Women, Enlightenment and Catholicism explores, for the first time, the uncharted territory of women’s religious Enlightenment. Each chapter offers a biographical insight into the social and cultural context of female Enlighteners and how Catholic women in Europe used the thought and values of Enlightenment to articulate their beliefs about how to live their faith in the world.
The collection of portraits within this book offers a closer look into the new understanding of womanhood that emerged from Enlightenment culture and was conceived independently from marital relationships. They also highlight the distinctive contributions that women made to political and religious philosophy, spirituality and mysticism, and the efforts to bring scientific knowledge to the attention of other women.
Guiding readers through the complex religious, intellectual and global connections influenced by the Enlightenment, Women, Enlightenment and Catholicism brings the achievements of Enlightenment women to the foreground and restores them to their rightful place in intellectual history. It is ideal reading for scholars and students of Enlightenment history, early modern religion and early modern women’s history.
Modernism at the Microphone: Radio, Propaganda, and Literary Aesthetics During World War II
As the Second World War raged throughout Europe, modernist writers often became crucial voices in the propaganda efforts of both sides. Modernism at the Microphone: Radio, Propaganda, and Literary Aesthetics During World War II is a comprehensive study of the role modernist writers’ radio works played in the propaganda war and the relationship between modernist literary aesthetics and propaganda. Drawing on new archival research, the book covers the broadcast work of such key figures as George Orwell, Orson Welles, Dorothy L. Sayers, Louis MacNeice, Mulk Raj Anand, T.S. Eliot, and P.G. Wodehouse. In addition to the work of Anglo-American modernists, Melissa Dinsman also explores the radio work of exiled German writers, such as Thomas Mann, as well as Ezra Pound’s notorious pro-fascist broadcasts. In this way, the book reveals modernism’s engagement with new technologies that opened up transnational boundaries under the pressures of war.
Religion, Secular Humanism, and Atheism: Multi-Institutional Politics and the USAFA Cadets' Freethinkers Group
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 2017
The recent emergence of atheist movements despite marginalization and distrust by a majority of Americans has been explained as a successful deployment of identity politics, but scholars have less often considered the importance of how identity and power intersect with political opportunity occurring within organizational and religious fields. Analyzing the case of the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA) Cadet Freethinkers Group, we demonstrate that although it encountered opportunity in the organizational shock of the 2004 USAFA proselytism controversy, this opportunity was not a blank check, but instead afforded some possibilities for action and not others. Freethinkers’ actions to secure official recognition were limited by (1) their low placement in the chain of command and (2) a collective identity inclusive of secular humanism and atheism, which did not produce enough unity to take collective actions risking punishment, and created ambiguity vis-à-vis religion that allowed USAFA administrators to accept or deny their institutional membership claims through appeal, respectively, to functional or substantive definitions of religion.
Experiencing Empire: Power, People, and Revolution in Early America
University of Virginia Press, 2017
Born of clashing visions of empire in England and the colonies, the American Revolution saw men and women grappling with power— and its absence—in dynamic ways. On both sides of the revolutionary divide, Americans viewed themselves as an imperial people. This perspective conditioned how they understood the exercise of power, how they believed governments had to function, and how they situated themselves in a world dominated by other imperial players.
Eighteenth-century Americans experienced what can be called an “imperial-revolutionary moment.” Over the course of the eighteenth century, the colonies were integrated into a broader Atlantic world, a process that forced common men and women to reexamine the meanings and influences of empire in their own lives. The tensions inherent in this process led to revolution. After the Revolution, the idea of empire provided order—albeit at a cost to many—during a chaotic period.
Viewing the early republic from an imperial-revolutionary perspective, the essays in this collection consider subjects as far-ranging as merchants, winemaking, slavery, sex, and chronology to nostalgia, fort construction, and urban unrest. They move from the very center of the empire in London to the far western frontier near St. Louis, offering a new way to consider America’s most formative period.
I Want You to Be: On the God of Love
Notre Dame Press, 2016
In his two previous books translated into English, Patience with God and Night of the Confessor, best-selling Czech author and theologian Tomáš Halík focused on the relationship between faith and hope. Now, in I Want You to Be, Halík examines the connection between faith and love, meditating on a statement attributed to St. Augustine—amo, volo ut sis, “I love you: I want you to be”—and its importance for contemporary Christian practice. Halík suggests that because God is not an object, love for him must be expressed through love of human beings. He calls for Christians to avoid isolating themselves from secular modernity and recommends instead that they embrace an active and loving engagement with nonbelievers through acts of servitude. At the same time, Halík critiques the drive for mere material success and suggests that love must become more than a private virtue in contemporary society. I Want You to Be considers the future of Western society, with its strong division between Christian and secular traditions, and recommends that Christians think of themselves as partners with nonbelievers. Halik’s distinctive style is to present profound insights on religious themes in an accessible way to a lay audience. As in previous books, this volume links spiritual and theological/philosophical topics with a tentative diagnosis of our times. This is theology written on one’s knees; Halik is as much a spiritual writer as a theologian. I Want You to Be will interest both general and scholarly readers interested in questions of secularism and Christianity in modern life.
Active Cleaning of Label Noise
Pattern Recognition, 2016
Mislabeled examples in the training data can severely affect the performance of supervised classifiers. In this paper, we present an approach to remove any mislabeled examples in the dataset by selecting suspicious examples as targets for inspection. We show that the large margin and soft margin principles used in support vector machines (SVM) have the characteristic of capturing the mislabeled examples as support vectors. Experimental results on two character recognition datasets show that one-class and two-class SVMs are able to capture around 85% and 99% of label noise examples, respectively, as their support vectors. We propose another new method that iteratively builds two-class SVM classifiers on the non-support vector examples from the training data followed by an expert manually verifying the support vectors based on their classification score to identify any mislabeled examples. We show that this method reduces the number of examples to be reviewed, as well as providing parameter independence of this method, through experimental results on four data sets. So, by (re-)examining the labels of the selective support vectors, most noise can be removed. This can be quite advantageous when rapidly building a labeled data set.
2.5-Year-Olds Express Suspense When Others Approach Reality with False Expectations
Child Development, 2016
The study investigated if 2.5-year-olds are susceptible to suspense and express tension when others’ false expec- tations are about to be disappointed. In two experiments (N = 32 each), children showed more tension when a protagonist approached a box with a false belief about its content than when she was ignorant. In Experiment 2, children also expressed more tension when the protagonist’s belief was false than when it was true. The findings reveal that toddlers affectively anticipate the “rude awakening” of an agent who is about to discover unexpected reality. They thus not only understand false beliefs per se but also grasp the affective implications of being mis- taken. The results are discussed with recourse to current theories about early understanding of false beliefs.
Tension in the Natural History of Human Thinking
Journal of Social Ontology, 2016
Michael Tomasello has greatly expanded our knowledge of human cognition and how it differs from that of other animals. In this commentary to his recent book A Natural History of Human Thinking, I first critique some of the presuppositions and arguments of his evolutionary story about how homo sapiens’ cognition emerged. For example, I question the strategy of relying on the modern chimpanzee as a model for our last shared ancestor, and I doubt the idea that what changed first over evolutionary time was hominin behavior, which then in turn brought about changes in cognition. In the second half of the commentary I aim to show that the author oscillates between an additive and a transformative account of human shared intentionality. I argue that shared intentionality shapes cognition in its entirety and therefore precludes the possibility that humans have the same, individual intentionality (as shown in, e.g. their instrumental reasoning) as other apes.
A “Third Way” in Christ: The Project of the Corporation of Mexican Students (CEM) in Cold War Mexico
The Catholic University of America Press, 2016
The 1950s saw the rise of a new generation of leftist, conservative, and Catholic students in Latin America that began calling for a unique form of hemispheric solidarity. Their efforts reflected concerns about momentous contemporary events that had a profound impact at their universities, like the anticolonial war in Algeria, the rise of military dictatorships in Guatemala, and the “iron fist” following the Hungarian insurrection. But these students also harkened back to the “arielista” language that characterized the first two decades of the twentieth century. Asserting their ideological positions during the incipient cold war, they participated throughout the 1950s in multiple international conferences to further their cause.
Phylogenetic Inference to the Best Explanation and the Bad Lot Argument
I respond to the bad lot argument in the context of biological systematics. The response relies on the historical nature of biological systematics and on the availability of pattern explanations. The basic assumption of common descent enables systematic methodology to naturally generate candidate explanatory hypotheses. However, systematists face a related challenge in the issue of character analysis. Character analysis is the central problem for contemporary systematics, yet the general problem of which it is a case—what counts as evidence?—has not been adequately discussed by proponents of inference to the best explanation. Facing this problem is the price of adopting abductive methods. I sketch an account of how systematists approach the problem of evidence.
Natural and Ethical Normativity
The Southern Journal of Philosophy, 2016
In this paper, I argue that ethical normativity can be grounded in the natural normativity of organisms without being reducible to it. Michael Thompson and Philippa Foot both offer forms of neo-Aristotelian ethical naturalism; I argue that both accounts have gaps that point toward the need for a constructive virtue ethics grounded in natural normativity. Similarly, Korsgaard’s constructivist ethics ignores the ongoing relevance of natural norms in human ethical life. I thus offer an account according to which the self-shaping activity of human organisms supplements and transforms natural normativity, giving rise to ethical norms. Such an account grounds human ethical distinctiveness in rationality without excluding nonrational humans from the ethical community. In the final section of the paper, I argue that ethical standards can be discovered (or hidden) through human activities, thus allowing for gradual progression (or regression) in ethical knowledge, both on individual and cultural levels.
Cambridge University Press, 2016
How might we bring together the study of religion and literature? How ought (or oughtn’t) we to conjoin these ways of making, finding, and thinking about meaning? For some, the simple fact that religion and literature intertwine in particular historical periods and cultures demands that they be studied in connection with each other. For others, literature provides an occasion for speculative religious thought, whereby literary texts are used to think about religious questions. Conversely, religious texts may be read with attention to their literary forms. But we might also think about religion and literature through their many points of convergence, allowing each area its integrity while bringing religion and literature into relation through traits, habits, practices, and qualities central to each. In the ways Western religion and literature are configured, those points of convergence include canon, belief (or disbelief), form, genre, ritual, and ways of relating to tradition and to authority.
Repetition is especially promising as a point of convergence. It is central to many areas of religious thought and practice. Repetitive prayer features in Western and non-Western religious practices, and repetition structures and motivates religious ritual. Ritual may both recall – by remembering an earlier event – and, in many traditions, reenact – by making earlier events present again to the community ritually performing them. Repetition is related to exemplarity, in that particular instances – of sanctity, of a holy life or practice – point toward a “corresponding universal principle.” Repetition plays a role in the persistence and development of religious traditions. Within Christianity, the religion most relevant to the poets discussed later, theology’s work arguably proceeds through adaptive repetition. The Christian theologian’s goal is not novelty or originality per se, but the interpretation of given revelation, teachings, texts, and practices with respect to the particularities of his or her culture and time. This is not pure repetition, to be sure, but processes of reinterpreting and renewing given truths do engage with repetition obliquely insofar as earlier texts and practices continue to resonate in new contexts.
Repetition is also critically important not only for the content but also for the form of literary texts. It thus has the capacity to open up large religious questions without blurring or evading literary texture. Repetition of stress, rhyme, syllables, tones, sounds, or syllable count structures traditional poetry in many languages.
Religious Crisis and Civic Transformation: How Conflicts over Gender and Sexuality Changed the West German Catholic Church
Brandeis University Press, 2016
This book offers a fresh interpretation of the connection between the West German Catholic Church and post-1950s political debates on women’s reproductive rights and the protection of life in West Germany. According to Tichenor, Catholic women in West Germany, influenced by the culture of consumption, the sexual revolution, Vatican II reforms, and feminism, sought to renegotiate their relationship with the Church. They demanded a more active role in Church ministries and challenged the Church’s hierarchical and gendered view of marriage and condemnation of artificial contraception. When the Church refused to compromise, women left en masse. In response, the Church slowly stitched together a new identity for a postsecular age, employing an elaborate nuptial symbolism to justify its stance on celibacy, women’s ordination, artificial contraception, abortion, and reproductive technologies. Additionally, the Church returned to a radical interventionist agenda that embraced issue-specific alliances with political parties other than the Christian parties. In her conclusion, Tichenor notes more recent setbacks to the German Catholic Church, including disappointment with the reactionary German Pope Benedict XVI and his failure in 2010 to address over 250 allegations of sexual abuse at twenty-two of Germany’s twenty-seven dioceses. How the Church will renew itself in the twenty-first century remains unclear. This closely observed case study, which bridges religious, political, legal, and women’s history, will interest scholars and students of twentieth-century European religious history, modern Germany, and the intersection of Catholic Church practice and women’s issues.
Freedom and Necessity in Modern Trinitarian Theology
Oxford University Press, 2016
The book examines the tension between God and the world through a constructive reading of the Trinitarian theologies and Christologies of Sergii Bulgakov (1871–1944), Karl Barth (1886–1968) and Hans Urs von Balthasar (1905–88). It focuses on what is called ‘the problematic of divine freedom and necessity’ and the response of the writers. By the ‘problematic’ is meant that God is simultaneously radically free and utterly bound to creation. God did not need to create and redeem the world in Christ. It is a contingent free gift. Yet, on the other side of a dialectic, he also has eternally determined himself to be God as Jesus Christ. He must create and redeem the world to be God as he has so determined. Thus, the world is given a certain ‘free necessity’ by him, because if there were no world, then there would be no Christ. A spectrum of different concepts of freedom and necessity and a theological ideal of a balance between these are outlined and then used to illumine the writers and articulate a constructive response to the problematic. It is shown that the classical Christian understanding of God having a non-necessary relationship to the world and divine freedom being a sheer assertion of God’s will must be completely rethought. It puts forward a Trinitarian, Christocentric, and cruciform vision of divine freedom. God is free as eternally self-giving, self-emptying, and self-receiving love. The book concludes with a contemporary theology of divine freedom founded on divine election.
The Iconic Imagination
Is it merely an accident of English etymology that ‘imagination’ is cognate with ‘image’? Despite the iconoclasm shared to a greater or lesser extent by all Abrahamic faiths, theism tends to assert a link between beauty, goodness and truth, all of which are viewed as Divine attributes. Douglas Hedley argues that religious ideas can be presented in a sensory form, especially in aesthetic works. Drawing explicitly on a Platonic metaphysics of the image as a bearer of transcendence, The Iconic Imagination shows the singular capacity and power of images to represent the transcendent in the traditions of Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism and Islam. In opposition to cold abstraction and narrow asceticism, Hedley shows that the image furnishes a vision of the eternal through the visible and temporal.
Two Cities: The Political Thought of American Transcendentalism
University Press of Kansas, 2016
Since the late eighteenth century the ideals of political democracy and individual flourishing have become so entangled that most people no longer differentiate them. The American Transcendentalists did. Two Cities is the first comprehensive account of the original but still underrated political thought of this movement, especially that of its three major authors: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Henry David Thoreau.
For decades, Daniel S. Malachuk contends, readers have misinterpreted the Transcendentalists as worshipping democracy and secularizing personhood. Two Cities proves the opposite. Focusing on their major writings, Malachuk presents the Transcendentalists as wresting apart and thus clarifying democracy as a profane project and individuality as a sacred one. Building upon this basic insight, the book affirms many recent but discrete conclusions about the movement’s various contributions (especially to liberalism, environmentalism, and public religion) and shows that we will understand how these commitments hang together only when we “re-transcendentalize the Transcendentalists.”
In five useful chapters—on the two-cities tradition within the history of liberalism, on the rival and subsequently dominant “overlap” theories of Lincoln and others, and on the unique contributions to two-cities thought by each of the major authors—Two Cities reintroduces readers to the Transcendentalists as among the most original and important contributors to American political thought.
Public Intellectuals in the Global Arena: Professors or Pundits?
Notre Dame Press, 2016
What is a public intellectual? Where are they to be found? What accounts for the lament today that public intellectuals are either few in number or, worse, irrelevant? While there is a small literature on the role of public intellectuals, it is organized around various thinkers rather than focusing on different countries or the unique opportunities and challenges inherent in varied disciplines or professions. In Public Intellectuals in the Global Arena, Michael C. Desch has gathered a group of contributors to offer a timely and far-reaching reassessment of the role of public intellectuals in a variety of Western and non-Western settings. The contributors delineate the centrality of historical consciousness, philosophical self-understanding, and ethical imperatives for any intelligentsia who presume to speak the truth to power. The first section provides in-depth studies of the role of public intellectuals in a variety of countries or regions, including the United States, Latin America, China, and the Islamic world. The essays in the second section take up the question of why public intellectuals vary so widely across different disciplines. These chapters chronicle changes in the disciplines of philosophy and economics, changes that “have combined to dethrone the former and elevate the latter as the preeminent homes of public intellectuals in the academy.” Also included are chapters that consider the evolving roles of the natural scientist, the former diplomat, and the blogger as public intellectuals. The final section provides concluding perspectives about the duties of public intellectuals in the twenty-first century.
Black Natural Law
Oxford University Press, 2016
Black Natural Law offers a new way of understanding the African American political tradition. Iconoclastically attacking left (including James Baldwin and Audre Lorde), right (including Clarence Thomas and Ben Carson), and center (Barack Obama), Vincent William Lloyd charges that many Black leaders today embrace secular, white modes of political engagement, abandoning the deep connections between religious, philosophical, and political ideas that once animated Black politics. By telling the stories of Frederick Douglass, Anna Julia Cooper, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Martin Luther King, Jr., Lloyd shows how appeals to a higher law, or God’s law, have long fueled Black political engagement. Such appeals do not seek to implement divine directives on earth; rather, they pose a challenge to the wisdom of the world, and they mobilize communities for collective action. Black natural law is deeply democratic: while charismatic leaders may provide the occasion for reflection and mobilization, all are capable of discerning the higher law using our human capacities for reason and emotion.
At a time when continuing racial injustice poses a deep moral challenge, the most powerful intellectual resources in the struggle for justice have been abandoned. Black Natural Law recovers a rich tradition, and it examines just how this tradition was forgotten. A Black intellectual class emerged that was disconnected from social movement organizing and beholden to white interests. Appeals to higher law became politically impotent: overly rational or overly sentimental. Recovering the Black natural law tradition provides a powerful resource for confronting police violence, mass incarceration, and today’s gross racial inequities.
Black Natural Law will change the way we understand natural law, a topic central to the Western ethical and political tradition. While drawing particularly on African American resources, Black Natural Law speaks to all who seek politics animated by justice.
Reading Dante's Commedia as Theology: Divinity Realized in Human Encounter
Oxford University Press, 2016
Dante’s Commedia compels readers to confront the mystery of their existence, to seek understanding of their relationship to the living conscious reality from which all possible experience arises. By pursuing these lines of inquiry, says Vittorio Montemaggi, readers can reach an ultimate reality that Dante calls love.
Montemaggi offers a detailed theological reading of the Commedia, examining the theme of human interaction, both as it is represented in the poem-the narrator Dante’s interaction with other characters-and by the relationship between author and reader. In doing so, he locates a Dante we may not be used to imagining, a man aware both of the spiritual power of his work, and of his profound, essential vulnerability and moral failing. Montemaggi shows that, for this Dante, truth emerges only through human limitation and failure, and not in spite of it.
Applying this interpretive framework to a reflection on the methodology of scholarship itself, Montemaggi offers a vision of what the academy could be-not individual scholars in competition with others, but a community that seeks to foster the understanding that can arise through interaction, vulnerability, and love. His vision constitutes a benign challenge to some of the ethos and practices of the modern academy, while simultaneously reflecting on the dynamics of one of the most inspiring and influential texts ever written about the relationship between humanity and divinity.
What They Saw in America: Alexis de Tocqueville, Max Weber, G. K. Chesterton, and Sayyid Qutb
Cambridge University Press, 2016
Grounded in the stories of their actual visits, What They Saw in America takes the reader through the journeys of four distinguished, yet very different foreign visitors - Alexis de Tocqueville, Max Weber, G. K. Chesterton and Sayyid Qutb - who traveled to the United States between 1830 and 1950. The comparative insights of these important outside observers (from both European and Middle Eastern countries) encourage sober reflection on a number of features of American culture that have persisted over time - individualism and conformism, the unique relationship between religion and capitalism, indifference toward nature, voluntarism, attitudes toward race, and imperialistic tendencies. Listening to these travelers’ views, both the ambivalent and even the more unequivocal, can help Americans better understand themselves, more fully empathize with the values of other cultures, and more deeply comprehend how the United States is perceived from the outside.
The Architecture of Emergency Constitutions
International Journal of Constitutional Law, 2016
Nine out of ten countries currently have emergency provisions written into their constitutions here simply referred to as emergency constitutions. The nature of these provisions remains poorly understood. We therefore aim at providing first answers to two questions: 1) how much additional discretionary power do emergency constitutions allow and which political actors are given the additional power; and 2) is there a limited number of “typical” emergency constitutions that combine various aspects in similar or even identical fashion? To answer the first question we construct an Indicator of Emergency Powers (INEP) which takes six central elements of emergency provisions explicitly into account. To answer the second question, we draw on cluster analysis and identify six well-defined clusters. Both the INEP as well as the six clusters allow us to answer important follow-up questions.
Beyond Thalassocracies: Understanding processes of Minoanisation and Mycenaeanisation in the Aegean
Beyond Thalassocracies aims to evaluate and rethink the manner in which archaeologists approach, understand, and analyse the various processes associated with culture change connected to interregional contact, using as a test case the world of the Aegean during the Late Bronze Age (c. 1600–1100 BC). The 14 chapters compare and contrast various aspects of the phenomena of Minoanisation and Mycenaeanisation, both of which share the basic underlying defining feature of material culture change in communities around the Aegean. This change was driven by trends manifesting themselves in the dominant palatial communities of each period of the Bronze Age. Over the past decade, our understanding of how these processes developed and functioned has changed considerably. Whereas current discussions on Minoanisation have already been informed by more recent theoretical trends, especially in material culture studies and post‐colonial theory, the process of Mycenaeanisation is still very much conceptualised along traditional lines of explanation. Since these phenomena occurred in chronological sequence, it makes sense that any reappraisal of their nature and significance should target those regions of the Aegean basin that were affected by both processes, highlighting their similarities and differences. Thus, in the present volume we focus on the southern and eastern Aegean, in particular the Cyclades, Dodecanese, and the north-eastern Aegean islands.
A Review of the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives
The National Academies Press, 2016
The United States’ tradition of conserving fish, wildlife, habitats, and cultural resources dates to the mid-19th century. States have long sought to manage fish and wildlife species within their borders, whereas many early federal conservation efforts focused on setting aside specific places as parks, sanctuaries, or reserves. With advances in landscape ecology over the past quarter-century, conservation planners, scientists, and practitioners began to stress the importance of conservation efforts at the scale of landscapes and seascapes. These larger areas were thought to harbor relatively large numbers of species that are likely to maintain population viability and sustain ecological processes and natural disturbance regimes - often considered critical factors in conserving biodiversity.
The Catholic Enlightenment: The Forgotten History of a Global Movement
Oxford University Press, 2016
“Whoever needs an act of faith to elucidate an event that can be explained by reason is a fool, and unworthy of reasonable thought.” This line, spoken by the notorious 18th-century libertine Giacomo Casanova, illustrates a deeply entrenched perception of religion, as prevalent today as it was hundreds of years ago. It is the sentiment behind the narrative that Catholic beliefs were incompatible with the Enlightenment ideals. Catholics, many claim, are superstitious and traditional, opposed to democracy and gender equality, and hostile to science. It may come as a surprise, then, to learn that Casanova himself was a Catholic. In The Catholic Enlightenment, Ulrich L. Lehner points to such figures as representatives of a long-overlooked thread of a reform-minded Catholicism, which engaged Enlightenment ideals with as much fervor and intellectual gravity as anyone. Their story opens new pathways for understanding how faith and modernity can interact in our own time.
Lehner begins two hundred years before the Enlightenment, when the Protestant Reformation destroyed the hegemony Catholicism had enjoyed for centuries. During this time the Catholic Church instituted several reforms, such as better education for pastors, more liberal ideas about the roles of women, and an emphasis on human freedom as a critical feature of theology. These actions formed the foundation of the Enlightenment’s belief in individual freedom. While giants like Spinoza, Locke, and Voltaire became some of the most influential voices of the time, Catholic Enlighteners were right alongside them. They denounced fanaticism, superstition, and prejudice as irreconcilable with the Enlightenment agenda.
In 1789, the French Revolution dealt a devastating blow to their cause, disillusioning many Catholics against the idea of modernization. Popes accumulated ever more power and the Catholic Enlightenment was snuffed out. It was not until the Second Vatican Council in 1962 that questions of Catholicism’s compatibility with modernity would be broached again.
Ulrich L. Lehner tells, for the first time, the forgotten story of these reform-minded Catholics. As Pope Francis pushes the boundaries of Catholicism even further, and Catholics once again grapple with these questions, this book will prove to be required reading.
The Art of Survival: France and the Great War Picaresque
Yale University Press, 2016
The First World War soldier has often been depicted as a helpless victim sacrificed by a ruthless society in the trenches of the Western Front. In fact, Libby Murphy reveals, French soldiers drew upon a long-standing European tradition to imagine themselves not as heroes or victims but as survivors. Murphy investigates how infantrymen and civilians attempted to make sense of the war while it was still in progress by reviving the picaresque, a literary mode in which unheroic protagonists are forced to fend for themselves in a chaotic and hostile world. By examining works by French and European novelists, journalists, graphic artists, cultural critics, and filmmakers—including Charlie Chaplin—Libby Murphy shows how the rich tradition of the European picaresque was uniquely appropriate for expressing anxieties provoked by modern, industrialized warfare.
A New Moral Vision: Gender, Religion, and the Changing Purposes of American Higher Education, 1837-1917
Cornell University Press, 2016
In A New Moral Vision, Andrea L. Turpin explores how the entrance of women into U.S. colleges and universities shaped changing ideas about the moral and religious purposes of higher education in unexpected ways, and in turn profoundly shaped American culture. In the decades before the Civil War, evangelical Protestantism provided the main impetus for opening the highest levels of American education to women. Between the Civil War and World War I, however, shifting theological beliefs, a growing cultural pluralism, and a new emphasis on university research led educators to reevaluate how colleges should inculcate an ethical outlook in students—just as the proportion of female collegians swelled.
In this environment, Turpin argues, educational leaders articulated a new moral vision for their institutions by positioning them within the new landscape of competing men’s, women’s, and coeducational colleges and universities. In place of fostering evangelical conversion, religiously liberal educators sought to foster in students a surprisingly more gendered ideal of character and service than had earlier evangelical educators. Because of this moral reorientation, the widespread entrance of women into higher education did not shift the social order in as egalitarian a direction as we might expect. Instead, college graduates—who formed a disproportionate number of the leaders and reformers of the Progressive Era—contributed to the creation of separate male and female cultures within Progressive Era public life and beyond.
Drawing on extensive archival research at ten trend-setting men’s, women’s, and coeducational colleges and universities, A New Moral Vision illuminates the historical intersection of gender ideals, religious beliefs, educational theories, and social change in ways that offer insight into the nature—and cultural consequences—of the moral messages communicated by institutions of higher education today.
Roman Social Imaginaries: Language and Thought in the Context of Empire
University of Toronto Press, 2015
In an expansion of his 2012 Robson Classical Lectures, Clifford Ando examines the connection between the nature of the Latin language and Roman thinking about law, society, and empire. Drawing on innovative work in cognitive linguistics and anthropology, Roman Social Imaginaries considers how metaphor, metonymy, analogy, and ideation helped create the structures of thought that shaped the Roman Empire as a political construct.
Beginning in early Roman history, Ando shows how the expansion of the empire into new territories led the Romans to develop and exploit Latin’s extraordinary capacity for abstraction. In this way, laws and institutions invented for use in a single Mediterranean city-state could be deployed across a remarkably heterogeneous empire.
Lucid, insightful, and innovative, the essays in Roman Social Imaginaries constitute some of today’s most original thinking about the power of language in the ancient world.
In the Beginning Was the Word: The Bible in American Public Life, 1492-1783
Oxford University Press, 2015
In the beginning of American history, the Word was in Spanish, Latin, and native languages like Nahuatal. But while Spanish and Catholic Christianity reached the New World in 1492, it was only with settlements in the seventeenth century that English-language Bibles and Protestant Christendom arrived. The Puritans brought with them intense devotion to Scripture, as well as their ideal of Christendom – a civilization characterized by a thorough intermingling of the Bible with everything else. That ideal began this country’s journey from the Puritan’s City on a Hill to the Bible-quoting country the U.S. is today. In the Beginning Was the Word shows how important the Bible remained, even as that Puritan ideal changed considerably through the early stages of American history.
Author Mark Noll shows how seventeenth-century Americans received conflicting models of scriptural authority from Europe: the Bible under Christendom (high Anglicanism), the Bible over Christendom (moderate Puritanism), and the Bible against Christendom (Anabaptists, enthusiasts, Quakers). In the eighteenth century, the colonists turned increasingly to the Bible against Christendom, a stance that fueled the Revolution against Anglican Britain and prepared the way for a new country founded on the separation of church and state.
One of the foremost scholars of American Christianity, Mark Noll brings a wealth of research and wisdom to In the Beginning Was the Word, providing a sweeping, engaging, and insightful survey of the relationship between the Bible and public issues from the beginning of European settlement. A seminal new work from a world-class scholar, this book offers a fresh account of the contested, sometimes ambiguous, but definite biblical roots of American history.
Reasons, Rights, and Values
Cambridge University Press, 2015
A central concern in recent ethical thinking is reasons for action and their relation to obligations, rights, and values. This collection of recent essays by Robert Audi presents an account of what reasons for action are, how they are related to obligation and rights, and how they figure in virtuous conduct. In addition, Audi reflects in his opening essay on his theory of reasons for action, his common-sense intuitionism, and his widely debated principles for balancing religion and politics. Reasons are shown to be basic elements in motivation, grounded in experience, and crucial for justifying actions and for understanding rights. Audi’s clear and engaging essays make these advanced debates accessible to students as well as scholars, and this volume will be a valuable resource for readers interested in ethical theory, political theory, applied ethics, or philosophy of action.
Tales of the Ex-Apes: How We Think about Human Evolution
University of California Press, 2015
What do we think about when we think about human evolution? With his characteristic wit and wisdom, anthropologist Jonathan Marks explores our scientific narrative of human origins—the study of evolution—and examines its cultural elements and theoretical foundations. In the process, he situates human evolution within a general anthropological framework and presents it as a special case of kinship and mythology.
Tales of the Ex-Apes argues that human evolution has incorporated the emergence of social relations and cultural histories that are unprecedented in the apes and thus cannot be reduced to purely biological properties and processes. Marks shows that human evolution has involved the transformation from biological to biocultural evolution. Over tens of thousands of years, new social roles—notably spouse, father, in-laws, and grandparents—have co-evolved with new technologies and symbolic meanings to produce the human species, in the absence of significant biological evolution. We are biocultural creatures, Marks argues, fully comprehensible by recourse to neither our real ape ancestry nor our imaginary cultureless biology.
Dying for Ideas: The Dangerous Lives of the Philosophers
What do Socrates, Hypatia, Giordano Bruno, Thomas More, and Jan Patocka have in common? First, they were all faced one day with the most difficult of choices: stay faithful to your ideas and die or renounce them and stay alive. Second, they all chose to die. Their spectacular deaths have become not only an integral part of their biographies, but are also inseparable from their work. A “death for ideas” is a piece of philosophical work in its own right; Socrates may have never written a line, but his death is one of the greatest philosophical best-sellers of all time.
Dying for Ideas explores the limit-situation in which philosophers find themselves when the only means of persuasion they can use is their own dying bodies and the public spectacle of their death. The book tells the story of the philosopher’s encounter with death as seen from several angles: the tradition of philosophy as an art of living; the body as the site of self-transcending; death as a classical philosophical topic; taming death and self-fashioning; finally, the philosophers’ scapegoating and their live performance of a martyr’s death, followed by apotheosis and disappearance into myth.
While rooted in the history of philosophy, Dying for Ideas is an exercise in breaking disciplinary boundaries. This is a book about Socrates and Heidegger, but also about Gandhi’s “fasting unto death” and self-immolation; about Girard and Passolini, and self-fashioning and the art of the essay.
Ruins Past: Modernity in Italy, 1744-1836
Oxford University Press, 2015
In an era haunted by its past, modern Europe sought to break with the old; the future and the new became the ideal. In Italy however, where the remains of the past dominated the landscape, ruins were a token both of decadence and of the inspiring legacy of tradition. Sabrina Ferri proposes a counter-narrative to the European story of progress by focusing on the often-marginalized and distinctive case of Italy.
For Italians, ruins uncovered the creative potential of the past, transforming it into an inexhaustible source of philosophical speculation and poetic invention whilst simultaneously symbolizing decay, loss and melancholy. Focusing on the representation of ruins by Italian writers, scientists, and artists between the mid-eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, Sabrina Ferri explores the culture of the period and traces Italy’s complex relationship with its past.
Character As Moral Fiction
Cambridge University Press, 2015
Everyone wants to be virtuous, but recent psychological investigations suggest that this may not be possible. Mark Alfano challenges this theory and asks, not whether character is empirically adequate, but what characters human beings could have and develop. Although psychology suggests that most people do not have robust character traits such as courage, honesty and open-mindedness, Alfano argues that we have reason to attribute these virtues to people because such attributions function as self-fulfilling prophecies – children become more studious if they are told that they are hard-working and adults become more generous if they are told that they are generous. He argues that we should think of virtue and character as social constructs: there is no such thing as virtue without social reinforcement. His original and provocative book will interest a wide range of readers in contemporary ethics, epistemology, moral psychology and empirically informed philosophy.
Ancient Authorities Intertwined
Journal of Jesuit Studies, 2015
The article surveys and interprets the works produced by José de Acosta during his years in the New World and his revisions of, and additions to, those works after his return to Europe. Elucidating Acosta’s engagements with both Scripture and classical literature, the essay urges respect for the various religious, intellectual, and metaphysical commitments that structured Acosta’s arguments. Particular attention is given to Acosta’s wrestling with the limits of ancient geographic knowledge, on the one hand, and to his efforts to understand religion in the New World in light of ancient evidence of knowledge of God before Christianity and patristic essays on the conversion of the ancient Mediterranean.
The Christology of Thomas Aquinas in Its Scholastic Context
Oxford University Press, 2015
The Christology of Aquinas is resolutely incarnational. Jesus, the incarnate Word, is true God, true human; and that Jesus is the Word, and God, and human, is, Aquinas insists, of decisive importance for human salvation. This chapter discusses the Christology of Aquinas’s Summa theologiae, with particular attention to the importance of the full, and distinctive, humanity of the Word incarnate. It deals with Aquinas’s view of the place of Jesus in God’s saving plan, and the principal sources of this teaching on Christ. The chapter looks at Aquinas’s teaching about the humanity of Christ, with particular attention to the co-assumed, to what is taken up by the Word in becoming incarnate along with the human nature itself. The chapter concludes with an assessment of Aquinas’s mature Christology by considering certain criticisms made of this teaching by those less comfortable with an incarnational approach.
Ontology and Metaontology: A Contemporary Guide
Ontology and Metaontology: A Contemporary Guide is a clear and accessible survey of ontology, focusing on the most recent trends in the discipline.
Divided into parts, the first half characterizes metaontology: the discourse on the methodology of ontological inquiry, covering the main concepts, tools, and methods of the discipline, exploring the notions of being and existence, ontological commitment, paraphrase strategies, fictionalist strategies, and other metaontological questions. The second half considers a series of case studies, introducing and familiarizing the reader with concrete examples of the latest research in the field. The basic sub-fields of ontology are covered here via an accessible and captivating exposition: events, properties, universals, abstract objects, possible worlds, material beings, mereology, fictional objects.
The guide’s modular structure allows for a flexible approach to the subject, making it suitable for both undergraduates and postgraduates looking to better understand and apply the exciting developments and debates taking place in ontology today.
Desire, Faith, and the Darkness of God: Essays in Honor of Denys Turner
Notre Dame Press, 2015
The essays engage classic Christian thought alongside literary and philosophical sources ranging from Pseudo-Dionysius and Dante to Karl Marx and Jacques Derrida. Building on the work of Denys Turner, they indicate that the boundary between atheism and Christian thought is productively blurry. Instead of settling the stale dispute over whether religion is rationally justified, their work suggests instead that Christian life is an ethical and political practice impassioned by a God who transcends understanding.
Forging a Multinational State: State Making in Imperial Austria from the Enlightenment to the First World War
Stanford University Press, 2015
The Habsburg Monarchy ruled over approximately one-third of Europe for almost 150 years. Previous books on the Habsburg Empire emphasize its slow decline in the face of the growth of neighboring nation-states. John Deak, instead, argues that the state was not in eternal decline, but actively sought not only to adapt, but also to modernize and build.
Deak has spent years mastering the structure and practices of the Austrian public administration and has immersed himself in the minutiae of its codes, reforms, political maneuverings, and culture. He demonstrates how an early modern empire made up of disparate lands connected solely by the feudal ties of a ruling family was transformed into a relatively unitary, modern, semi-centralized bureaucratic continental empire. This process was only derailed by the state of emergency that accompanied the First World War. Consequently, Deak provides the reader with a new appreciation for the evolving architecture of one of Europe’s Great Powers in the long nineteenth century.
Can Patents Prohibit Research? On the Social Epistemology of Patenting and Licensing in Science
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science, 2014
A topic of growing importance within philosophy of science is the epistemic implications of the organization of research. This paper identifies a promising approach to social epistemology—nonideal systems design—and uses it to examine one important aspect of the organization of research, namely the system of patenting and licensing and its role in structuring the production and dissemination of knowledge. The primary justification of patenting in science and technology is consequentialist in nature. Patenting should incentivize research and thereby promote the development of knowledge, which in turn facilitates social progress. Some have disputed this argument, maintaining that patenting actually inhibits knowledge production. In this paper, I make a stronger argument; in some areas of research in the US—in particular, research on GM seeds—patents and patent licenses can be, and are in fact being, used to prohibit some research. I discuss three potential solutions to this problem: voluntary agreements, eliminating patents, and a research exemption. I argue against eliminating patents, and I show that while voluntary agreements and a research exemption could be helpful, they do not sufficiently address the problems of access that are discussed here. More extensive changes in the organization of research are necessary.
Brains, Neuroscience, and Animalism: On the Implications of Thinking Brains
The Southern Journal of Philosophy, 2014
The neuroscience revolution has led many scientists to posit “expansive” or “thinking” brains that instantiate rich psychological properties. As a result, some scientists now even claim you are identical to such a brain. However, Eric Olson has offered new arguments that thinking brains cannot exist due to their intuitively “abominable” implications. After situating the commitment to thinking brains in the wider scientific discussions in which they are posited, I then critically assess Olson’s arguments against such entities. Although highlighting an important insight, I show that Olson’s objections to the existence of thinking brains fail and that a wider discussion engaging our new empirical findings is actually required in order to resolve the deeper issues.
Humanism and Theoretical Pluralism: A Response to Christian Smith's What Is a Person?
Journal of Religious Ethics, 2014
Christian Smith’s What Is a Person? calls for a normative turn in sociology—the grounding of sociology in a theory of human nature. While offering a systematic account of a thick view of personhood—what it should look like, how it can be applied, and why it is needed—the book proposes a critical realist personalism as the best metatheoretical direction for sociology. The author of this essay agrees with the main questions and direction of Smith’s project. However, by historicizing the origins and sociological implications of personalist moral theory, the author problematizes the personalism that is one of the foundations of Smith’s project. She contrasts personalism with humanism, suggesting that the latter might possess both the normative robustness and comparative potential needed for contemporary sociological theory and practice. She ends her response to Smith’s book by raising questions about the relationship between critical realist personalism and theoretical pluralism.
Imperial Portugal in the Age of Atlantic Revolutions: The Luso-Brazilian World, c.1770–1850
Cambridge University Press, 2014
As the British, French and Spanish Atlantic empires were torn apart in the Age of Revolutions, Portugal steadily pursued reforms to tie its American, African and European territories more closely together. Eventually, after a period of revival and prosperity, the Luso-Brazilian world also succumbed to revolution, which ultimately resulted in Brazil’s independence from Portugal. The first of its kind in the English language to examine the Portuguese Atlantic World in the period from 1750 to 1850, this book reveals that despite formal separation, the links and relationships that survived the demise of empire entwined the historical trajectories of Portugal and Brazil even more tightly than before. From constitutionalism to economic policy to the problem of slavery, Portuguese and Brazilian statesmen and political writers laboured under the long shadow of empire as they sought to begin anew and forge stable post-imperial orders on both sides of the Atlantic.
Enlightenment and Catholicism in Europe: A Transnational History
Notre Dame Press, 2014
In recent years, historians have rediscovered the religious dimensions of the Enlightenment. This volume offers a thorough reappraisal of the so-called “Catholic Enlightenment” as a transnational Enlightenment movement. This Catholic Enlightenment was at once ultramontane and conciliarist, sometimes moderate but often surprisingly radical, with participants active throughout Europe in universities, seminaries, salons, and the periodical press.
In Enlightenment and Catholicism in Europe: A Transnational History, the contributors, primarily European scholars, provide intellectual biographies of twenty Catholic Enlightenment figures across eighteenth-century Europe, many of them little known in English-language scholarship on the Enlightenment and pre-revolutionary eras. These figures represent not only familiar French intellectuals of the Catholic Enlightenment but also Iberian, Italian, English, Polish, and German thinkers. The essays focus on the intellectual and cultural factors influencing the lives and works of their subjects, revealing the often global networks of intellectual sociability and reading that united them both to the Catholic Enlightenment and to eighteenth-century policies and projects. The volume, whose purpose is to advance the understanding of a transnational “Catholic Enlightenment,” will be a reliable reference for historians, theologians, and scholars working in religious studies.
Why Communism Did Not Collapse: Understanding Authoritarian Regime Resilience in Asia and Europe
Cambridge University Press, 2013
This volume brings together a distinguished group of scholars working to address the puzzling durability of communist autocracies in Eastern Europe and Asia, which are the longest-lasting type of nondemocratic regime to emerge after World War I. The volume conceptualizes the communist universe as consisting of the ten regimes in Eastern Europe and Mongolia that eventually collapsed in 1989–91, and the five regimes that survived the fall of the Berlin Wall: China, Vietnam, Laos, North Korea, and Cuba. Taken together, the essays offer a theoretical argument that emphasizes the importance of institutional adaptations as a foundation of communist resilience. In particular, the contributors focus on four adaptations: of the economy, of ideology, of the mechanisms for inclusion of potential rivals, and of the institutions of vertical and horizontal accountability. The volume argues that when regimes are no longer able to implement adaptive change, contingent leadership choices and contagion dynamics make collapse more likely. By conducting systematic paired comparisons of the European and Asian cases and by developing arguments that encompass both collapse and resilience, the volume offers a new methodological approach for studying communist autocracies.
Transatlantic Travels in Nineteenth-Century Latin America: European Women Pilgrims
Rowman & Littlefield, 2013
Transatlantic Travels in Nineteenth-Century Latin America: European Women Pilgrims retraces the steps of five intrepid “lady travelers” who ventured into the geography of the New World—Mexico, the Southern Cone, Brazil, and the Caribbean—at a crucial historical juncture, the period of political anarchy following the break from Spain and the rise of modernity at the turn of the twentieth century. Traveling as historians, social critics, ethnographers, and artists, Frances Erskine Inglis (1806–82), Maria Graham (1785–1842), Flora Tristan (1803–44), Fredrika Bremer (1801–65), and Adela Breton (1849–1923) reshaped the map of nineteenth-century Latin America. Organized by themes rather than by individual authors, this book examines European women’s travels as a spectrum of narrative discourses, ranging from natural history, history, and ethnography. Women’s social condition becomes a focal point of their travels. By combining diverse genres and perspectives, women’s travel writing ushers a new vision of post-independence societies. The trope of pilgrimage conditions the female travel experience, which suggests both the meta-end of the journey as well as the broader cultural frame shaping their individual itineraries.
When Peace Is Not Enough: How the Israeli Peace Camp Thinks about Religion, Nationalism, and Justice
The University of Chicago Press, 2013
The state of Israel is often spoken of as a haven for the Jewish people, a place rooted in the story of a nation dispersed, wandering the earth in search of their homeland. Born in adversity but purportedly nurtured by liberal ideals, Israel has never known peace, experiencing instead a state of constant war that has divided its population along the stark and seemingly unbreachable lines of dissent around the relationship between unrestricted citizenship and Jewish identity.
By focusing on the perceptions and histories of Israel’s most marginalized stakeholders—Palestinian Israelis, Arab Jews, and non-Israeli Jews—Atalia Omer cuts to the heart of the Israeli-Arab conflict, demonstrating how these voices provide urgently needed resources for conflict analysis and peacebuilding. Navigating a complex set of arguments about ethnicity, boundaries, and peace, and offering a different approach to the renegotiation and reimagination of national identity and citizenship, Omer pushes the conversation beyond the bounds of the single narrative and toward a new and dynamic concept of justice—one that offers the prospect of building a lasting peace.
The Impact of Idealism: The Legacy of Post-Kantian German Thought
Cambridge University Press, 2013
The first study of its kind, The Impact of Idealism assesses the impact of classical German philosophy on science, religion and culture. This volume explores German Idealism’s impact on philosophy and scientific thought. Fourteen essays, by leading authorities in their respective fields, each focus on the legacy of a particular idea that emerged around 1800, when the underlying concepts of modern philosophy were being formed, challenged and criticised, leaving a legacy that extends to all physical areas and all topics in the philosophical world. From British Idealism to phenomenology, existentialism, pragmatism and French postmodernism, the story of German Idealism’s impact on philosophy is here interwoven with man’s scientific journey of self-discovery in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries – from Darwin to Nietzsche to Freud and beyond. Spanning the analytical and Continental divide, this first volume examines Idealism’s impact on contemporary philosophical discussions.
Existence as a Real Property: The Ontology of Meinongianism
This profound exploration of one of the core notions of philosophy—the concept of existence itself—reviews, then counters (via Meinongian theory), the mainstream philosophical view running from Hume to Frege, Russell, and Quine, summarized thus by Kant: “Existence is not a predicate.” The initial section of the book presents a comprehensive introduction to, and critical evaluation of, this mainstream view. The author moves on to provide the first systematic survey of all the main Meinongian theories of existence, which, by contrast, reckon existence to be a real, full-fledged property of objects that some things possess, and others lack. As an influential addition to the research literature, the third part develops the most up-to-date neo-Meinongian theory called Modal Meinongianism, applies it to specific fields such as the ontology of fictional objects, and discusses its open problems, laying the groundwork for further research.
In accordance with the latest trends in analytic ontology, the author prioritizes a meta-ontological viewpoint, adopting a dual definition of meta-ontology as the discourse on the meaning of being, and as the discourse on the tools and methods of ontological enquiry. This allows a balanced assessment of philosophical views on a cost-benefit basis, following multiple criteria for theory evaluation. Compelling and revealing, this new publication is a vital addition to contemporary philosophical ontology.
Paraconsistency: Logic and Applications
A logic is called ‘paraconsistent’ if it rejects the rule called ‘ex contradictione quodlibet’, according to which any conclusion follows from inconsistent premises. While logicians have proposed many technically developed paraconsistent logical systems and contemporary philosophers like Graham Priest have advanced the view that some contradictions can be true, and advocated a paraconsistent logic to deal with them, until recent times these systems have been little understood by philosophers. This book presents a comprehensive overview on paraconsistent logical systems to change this situation.
The book includes almost every major author currently working in the field. The papers are on the cutting edge of the literature some of which discuss current debates and others present important new ideas. The editors have avoided papers about technical details of paraconsistent logic, but instead concentrated upon works that discuss more “big picture” ideas. Different treatments of paradoxes takes centre stage in many of the papers, but also there are several papers on how to interpret paraconistent logic and some on how it can be applied to philosophy of mathematics, the philosophy of language, and metaphysics.
Repentance in Late Antiquity: Eastern Asceticism and the Framing of the Christian Life c.400-650 CE
Oxford University Press, 2013
The call to repentance is central to the message of early Christianity. While this is undeniable, the precise meaning of the concept of repentance for early Christians has rarely been investigated to any great extent, beyond studies of the rise of penitential discipline. In this study, the rich variety of meanings and applications of the concept of repentance are examined, with a particular focus on the writings of several key ascetic theologians of the fifth to seventh centuries: SS Mark the Monk, Barsanuphius and John of Gaza, and John Climacus. It is shown how they predominantly see repentance as a positive, comprehensive idea that serves to frame the whole of Christian life, not simply one or more of its parts. While the modern dominant understanding of repentance as a moment of sorrowful regret over past misdeeds, or as equivalent to penitential discipline, is present to a degree, such definitions by no means exhaust the concept for these ascetics. The path of repentance is depicted as stretching from an initial about-face completed in baptism, through the living out of the baptismal gift by keeping the Gospel commandments, culminating in the idea of intercessory repentance for others, after the likeness of Christ’s innocent suffering for the world. While this overarching role for repentance in Christian life is clearest in the works of these ascetics, their thought is thoroughly contextualized through assessments of the concept of repentance in Scripture, the early church, apocalyptic texts, and canonical material.
Marsilius of Padua at the Intersection of Ancient and Medieval Traditions of Political Thought
University of Toronto Press, 2012
This book focuses on the reception of classical political ideas in the political thought of the fourteenth-century Italian writer Marsilius of Padua. Vasileios Syros provides a novel cross-cultural perspective on Marsilius’s theory and breaks fresh ground by exploring linkages between his ideas and the medieval Muslim, Jewish, and Byzantine traditions.
Syros investigates Marsilius’s application of medical metaphors in his discussion of the causes of civil strife and the desirable political organization. He also demonstrates how Marsilius’s demarcation between ethics and politics and his use of examples from Greek mythology foreshadow early modern political debates (involving such prominent political authors as Niccolò Machiavelli and Paolo Sarpi) about the political dimension of religion, church-state relations, and the emergence and decline of the state.
Kant's Elliptical Path
Oxford University Press, 2012
Kant’s Elliptical Path explores the main stages and key concepts in the development of Kant’s Critical philosophy, from the early 1760s to the 1790s. Karl Ameriks provides a detailed and concise account of the main ways in which the later Critical works provide a plausible defence of the conception of humanity’s fundamental end that Kant turned to after reading Rousseau in the 1760s. Separate essays are devoted to each of the three Critiques, as well as to earlier notes and lectures and several of Kant’s later writings on history and religion. A final section devotes three chapters to post-Kantian developments in German Romanticism, accounts of tragedy up through Nietzsche, and contemporary philosophy. The theme of an elliptical path is shown to be relevant to these writers as well as to many aspects of Kant’s own life and work.
The topics of the book include fundamental issues in epistemology and metaphysics, with a new defense of the Amerik’s ‘moderate’ interpretation of transcendental idealism. Other essays evaluate Kant’s concept of will and reliance on a ‘fact of reason’ in his practical philosophy, as well as his critique of traditional theodicies, and the historical character of his defense of religion and the concepts of creation and hope within ‘the boundaries of mere reason’. Kant’s Elliptical Path will be of value to historians of modern philosophy and Kant scholars, while its treatment of several literary figures and issues in aesthetics, politics, history, and theology make it relevant to readers outside of philosophy.
The Open Instruction Theory of Attitude Reports and the Pragmatics of Answers
Philosophers' Imprint, 2012
Reports on beliefs, desires, and other attitudes continue to raise foundational questions about linguistic meaning and the pragmatics of utterance interpretation. There is a strong intuition that an attitude report like ‘John believes that Mary smokes’ can simply convey the singular proposition that the individual Mary is believed by John to have the property of smoking. Yet, there is also a strong intuition that ‘Lois believes that Superman can fly’ can additionally convey how an individual is represented (viz. as a superhero not as a reporter). Cases of this sort can be generated with any name in a suitable context (Kripke 1979). It is far from settled how this should be explained. I propose the Open Instruction Theory (OIT), according to which the linguistic meaning of attitude report sentences consists in instructions to create mental models, where those instructions leave open, depending on the state of the discourse, the possibility of singular interpretations as well as of complex interpretations including information about ways of representing. The account makes precise the idea that attitude report sentences with proper names are semantically nonspecific (Soames 2004), rather than indexical (Schiffer 2000), yielding predictions about syntactic constraints on interpretation. On this view, linguistic meaning itself does not provide determinate propositions. Since Gricean pragmatics requires determinate propositions as input, I propose new principles of pragmatics for literal utterance interpretation that do not require them but remain strongly constrained by linguistic meaning. The core principle is “inference to the most responsive interpretation.” Roughly, among the range of literal interpretations allowed by linguistic meaning, the listener generates the one that most fully answers the background question she seeks to answer by engaging in discourse. The pragmatics of literal utterance interpretation is the pragmatics of interpreting potential answers, even if communicative intention may be more important for conversational implicature. The account predicts cases in which our interpretations differ from what we would take the speaker to have had in mind. Singular interpretations of attitude reports have a special status as default interpretations. I suggest some advantages of OIT over indexicalist, DRT, and free enrichment theories. I argue that to the extent that we have to go beyond a strict principle of linguistic constraint (Stanley 2005), we should aim toward a principle of psychological constraint.
Minima Libertaria: Meditazioni dalla libertà offesa
Leonardo Facco Editore, 2011
Enlightened Monks: The German Benedictines, 1740-1803
Oxford University Press, 2011
Enlightened Monks investigates the social, cultural, philosophical, and theological challenges the German Benedictines had to face between 1740 and 1803, and how the Enlightenment process influenced the self-understanding and lifestyle of these religious communities. It had an impact on their forms of communication, their transfer of knowledge, their relationships to worldly authorities and to the academic world, and also their theology and philosophy. The multifaceted achievements of enlightened monks, which included a strong belief in individual freedom, tolerance, human rights, and non-violence, show that monasticism was on the way to becoming fully integrated into the Enlightenment. Ulrich L. Lehner refutes the widespread assumption that monks were reactionary enemies of Enlightenment ideas. On the contrary, he demonstrates that many Benedictines implemented the new ideas of the time into their own systems of thought. This revisionist account contributes to a better understanding not only of monastic culture in Central Europe, but also of Catholic religious culture in general.
A Companion to the Catholic Enlightenment in Europe
This book offers the first comprehensive overview of the Catholic Enlightenment in Europe. It surveys the diversity of views about the structure and nature of the movement, pointing toward the possibilities for further research. The volume presents a series of comprehensive treatments on the process and interpretation of Catholic Enlightenment in France, Spain, Portugal, Poland, the Holy Roman Empire, Malta, Italy and the Habsburg territories. An introductory overview explores the varied meanings of Catholic Enlightenment and situates them in a series of intellectual and social contexts. The topics covered in this book are crucial for a proper understanding of the role and place not only of Catholicism in the eighteenth century, but also for the social and religious history of modern Europe.