([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 22nd, 2017 09:20 pm)

Posted by Jonathan Dancy

[Revised entry by Jonathan Dancy on September 22, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
Moral Particularism, at its most trenchant, is the claim that there are no defensible moral principles, that moral thought does not consist in the application of moral principles to cases, and that the morally perfect person should not be conceived as the person of principle. There are more cautious versions, however. The strongest defensible version, perhaps, holds that though there may be some moral principles, still the rationality of moral thought and judgement in no way depends...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 22nd, 2017 06:02 pm)

Posted by Alexander Broadie

[Revised entry by Alexander Broadie on September 22, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
Philosophy was at the core of the eighteenth century movement known as the Scottish Enlightenment. The movement included major figures, such as Francis Hutcheson, David Hume, Adam Smith, Thomas Reid and Adam Ferguson, and also many others who produced notable works, such as Gershom Carmichael, Archibald Campbell, George Turnbull, George Campbell, James Beattie, Alexander Gerard, Henry Home (Lord Kames) and Dugald Stewart. I discuss some of the leading ideas of these thinkers, though paying less attention than I otherwise would to Hume, Smith and...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 22nd, 2017 05:13 pm)

Posted by Laura J. Snyder

[Revised entry by Laura J. Snyder on September 22, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
William Whewell (1794 - 1866) was one of the most important and influential figures in nineteenth-century Britain. Whewell, a polymath, wrote extensively on numerous subjects, including mechanics, mineralogy, geology, astronomy, political economy, theology, educational reform, international law, and architecture, as well as the works that remain the most well-known today in philosophy of science, history of science, and moral philosophy. He was one of the founding members and a president of the British Association for the...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 21st, 2017 05:55 pm)

Posted by Lorne Falkenstein and Giovanni Grandi

[Revised entry by Lorne Falkenstein and Giovanni Grandi on September 21, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography, notes.html]
Etienne Bonnot, Abbe de Condillac, was the chief exponent of a radically empiricist account of the workings of the mind that has since come to be referred to as "sensationism." Whereas John Locke's empiricism followed upon a rejection of innate principles and innate ideas, Condillac went further and rejected innate abilities as well. On his version of empiricism, experience not only provides us with "ideas" or the raw materials for knowledge, it also teaches us how to focus attention,...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 19th, 2017 11:39 pm)

Posted by Mark Philp

[Revised entry by Mark Philp on September 19, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
Thomas Paine was a pamphleteer, controversialist and international revolutionary. His Common Sense (1776) was a central text behind the call for American independence from Britain; his Rights of Man (1791 - 2) was the most widely read pamphlet in the movement for reform in Britain in the 1790s and for the opening decades of the nineteenth century; he was active in the French Revolution and was a member of the French National Convention between 1792 and 1795; he is seen by many as a key figure in the emergence of claims for the state's responsibilities for welfare and educational provision, and...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 18th, 2017 08:49 pm)

Posted by Kadri Vihvelin

[Revised entry by Kadri Vihvelin on September 18, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
We believe that we have free will and this belief is so firmly entrenched in our daily lives that it is almost impossible to take seriously the thought that it might be mistaken. We deliberate and make choices, for instance, and in so doing we assume that there is more than one choice we can make, more than one action we are able to perform. When we look back and regret a foolish choice, or blame ourselves for not doing something we should have done, we assume that we could have chosen and done otherwise. When we look forward and make...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 15th, 2017 06:16 pm)

Posted by E. Jennifer Ashworth

[Revised entry by E. Jennifer Ashworth on September 15, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
Medieval theories of analogy were a response to problems in three areas: logic, theology, and metaphysics. Logicians were concerned with the use of words having more than one sense, whether completely different, or related in some way. Theologians were concerned with language about God. How can we speak about a transcendent, totally simple spiritual being without altering the sense of the words we use? Metaphysicians were concerned with talk about reality. How can we say...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 13th, 2017 09:58 pm)

Posted by Robert Gooding-Williams

[New Entry by Robert Gooding-Williams on September 13, 2017.]
William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868 - 1963) believed that his life acquired its only deep significance through its participation in what he called "the Negro problem," or, later, "the race problem." Whether that is true or not, it is difficult to think of anyone, at any time, who examined the race problem in its many aspects more profoundly, extensively, and subtly than W.E.B. Du Bois. Du Bois was an activist and a journalist, a historian...

Posted by Jerry Samet and Deborah Zaitchik

[Revised entry by Jerry Samet and Deborah Zaitchik on September 13, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography, notes.html]
Nativism and Empiricism are rival approaches to questions about the origins of knowledge. Roughly speaking, Nativists hold that important elements of our understanding of the world are innate, that they are part of our initial condition, and thus do not have to be learned from experience. Empiricists deny this, claiming that all knowledge is based in experience. Different Nativist and Empiricist views spell out the details in different ways, depending on which elements of our knowledge are at issue, what counts as understanding, what is meant by...
([syndicated profile] sep_feed Sep. 12th, 2017 05:18 pm)

Posted by M. Randall Holmes

[Revised entry by M. Randall Holmes on September 12, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
By "alternative set theories" we mean systems of set theory differing significantly from the dominant ZF (Zermelo-Frankel set theory) and its close relatives (though we will review these systems in the article). Among the systems we will review are typed theories of sets, Zermelo set theory and its variations, New Foundations and related systems, positive set theories, and constructive set theories. An interest in the range of alternative set theories does not presuppose an interest in replacing the dominant set...

Posted by Eric Brown

[Revised entry by Eric Brown on September 12, 2017.
Changes to: Main text, Bibliography]
Plato's Republic centers on a simple question: is it always better to be just than unjust? The puzzles in Book One prepare for this question, and Glaucon and Adeimantus make it explicit at the beginning of Book Two. To answer the question, Socrates takes a long way around, sketching an account of a good city on the grounds that a good city would be just and that defining justice as a virtue of a city would help to define justice as a virtue of a human being....