Philosophical Progresshttp://www.philosophicalprogress.org/2022-10-01T23:59:00ZArticles and blog posts found on 01 October 20222022-10-01T23:59:00Z2022-10-01T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-10-01://<b>Andy Egan, Michael G. Titelbaum: <a href="https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/self-locating-beliefs/">Self-Locating Beliefs</a></b> (html, 17427 words)<br /> <div>Self-locating beliefs are beliefs about one’s position or situation in the world, as opposed to beliefs about how the world is in itself. Section 1 of this entry introduces self-locating beliefs. Section 2 presents several distinct arguments that self-locating beliefs constitute a theoretically distinctive category. These arguments are driven by central examples from the literature; we categorize the examples by the arguments to which they contribute. (Some examples serve multiple strands of argument at once.) Section 3 examines positive proposals for modeling self-locating belief, focusing on the two most prominent proposals, due to Lewis and Perry.</div><br /> <b>Simon Goldstein, John Hawthorne: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/GOLSCA-5.pdf">Safety, Closure, and Extended Methods</a></b> (pdf, 13870 words)<br /> <div>Recent research has identified a tension between the Safety principle that knowledge is belief without risk of error, and the Closure principle that knowledge is preserved by competent deduction. Timothy Williamson reconciles Safety and Closure by proposing that when an agent deduces a conclusion from some premises, the agent’s method for believing the conclusion includes their method for believing each premise. We argue that this theory is untenable because it implies problematically easy epistemic access to one’s methods. Several possible solutions are explored and rejected.</div><br /> <b>Alexander Pruss's Blog: <a href="http://alexanderpruss.blogspot.com/2022/10/vagueness-and-moral-obligation.html">Vagueness and moral obligation</a></b> (html, 483 words)<br /> <div>It sure seems like there is vagueness in moral obligation. For instance, torture of the innocent is always wrong, making an innocent person’s life mildly unpleasant for a good cause is not always wrong, and in between we can run a Sorites sequence. &hellip;</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 30 September 20222022-09-30T23:59:00Z2022-09-30T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-30://<b>: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/LIPSAS-3.pdf">Standpoints: A Study of a Metaphysical Picture</a></b> (pdf, 9509 words)<br /> <div>Reality contains multiple standpoints and encompasses any fact that obtains from any such standpoint. Any fact that obtains at all, obtains relative to some standpoint. Any true representation cannot but adopt some standpoint and, because there are multiple standpoints relative to which different facts obtain, no single representation can be a truly complete representation of all the facts.</div><br /> <b>Huw Price: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21223/1/TimeForPragmatismFinal.pdf">Time for Pragmatism</a></b> (pdf, 21927 words)<br /> <div><b></b>Are the distinctions between past, present and future, and the apparent ‘passage’ of time, features of the world in itself, or manifestations of the human perspective? Questions of this kind have been at the heart of metaphysics of time since antiquity. The latter view has much in common with pragmatism, though few in these debates are aware of that connection, and few of the view’s proponents think of themselves as pragmatists. For their part, pragmatists are often unaware of this congenial application of their methodology; some associate pragmatism with the other side of the old debate in the metaphysics of time. In my view, this link between time and pragmatism only scratches the surface of the deep two-way dependencies between these two topics. The human temporal perspective turns out to be deeply implicated not merely in our temporal notions themselves, but in many other conceptual categories – arguably, in fact, in all of them, and in the nature of language and thought. In this way, reflection on our own temporal character vindicates James’ famous slogan for global pragmatism: ‘The trail of the human serpent is thus over everything.’</div><br /> <b>Jeff Speaks: <a href="https://www3.nd.edu/~jspeaks/papers/verbal.pdf">Verbal disputes about the content of experience</a></b> (pdf, 8876 words)<br /> <div>Sometimes one defends a thesis which turns out to be false. This is an occupational hazard; it is something every philosopher who makes substantive claims will end up doing. Much worse is to defend a position in a dispute which turns out to be merely verbal. Then one has not just taken the wrong side in a debate, but has wasted one’s time by engaging in a debate which turns out not to have been worth having in the first place. This is also, unfortunately, an occupational hazard. What I want to explore in this paper is the question of whether certain sorts of debates in which many philosophers of perception (including myself) have engaged turn out to be, on closer inspection, just verbal disputes.</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 29 September 20222022-09-29T23:59:00Z2022-09-29T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-29://<b> Javier Suárez: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21215/1/Novick_Haueis_2021_Conceptual_Patchworks_Conceptual_Housekeeping.pdf">Conceptual Patchworks and Conceptual Housekeeping</a></b> (pdf, 10975 words)<br /> <div>Recent work on scientific concepts has established that they often have a patchwork structure, in which use is regimented into distinct patches of application associated with distinct size- and/or time-scales, measurement techniques, and licensed inferences. Patchworks thus inherently involve structured polysemy. Why tolerate such conceptual complexity? Why not use distinct terms for each patch to avoid the threat of equivocation? At the very least, an account is owed about when such complexity goes too far: how and when do patchwork concepts fail? We address these questions by considering two cases of conceptual housekeeping: cases where the relevant scientists themselves judged a patchwork concept to have gone too far and took steps to clean up the mess. On the basis of these case studies (plus supporting normative arguments), we defend two theses. We argue, first, that such housekeeping efforts are context-sensitive: concept deviance cannot be read off concept structure alone. Second, we defend minimalism about such housekeeping: tolerance for conceptual complexity is an appropriate default attitude.</div><br /> <b>Federico Boem: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21019/1/SUBMIT%20Suarez,%20Boem%20-%20Full%20Paper.docx">Technology-Driven Surrogates and the Perils of Epistemic Misalignment: An Analysis from Contemporary Microbiome Science</a></b> (doc, 14513 words)<br /> <div>A general view in philosophy of science says that the <i>appropriateness</i> of an object to act as a surrogate depends on the user’s decision to utilize it as such. This paper challenges this claim by examining the role of surrogative reasoning in high-throughput sequencing technologies (technology-driven surrogates) as they are used in contemporary microbiome science. Drawing on this, we argue that, in technology-driven surrogates, knowledge about the type of inference practically permitted and epistemically justified by the surrogate constrains their use and thus puts a limit to the user’s intentions to use any object as a surrogate for what they please. Ignoring this leads to a serious epistemic misalignment, which ultimately prevents surrogative reasoning. Thus, we conclude that knowledge about the type of surrogate reasoning that the technologies being used allow is fundamental to avoid misinterpreting the consequences of the data obtained with them, the hypothesis this data supports, and what these technologies are surrogates of.</div><br /> <b>Karim Bschir, Simon Lohse: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21216/1/Paper_PPP_philsci.pdf">Pandemics, Policy, and Pluralism: A Feyerabend-Inspired Perspective on COVID-19</a></b> (pdf, 13514 words)<br /> <div>We analyse insufficient epistemic pluralism and associated problems in science-based policy advice during the COVID-19 pandemic drawing on specific arguments in Paul Feyerabend’s philosophy. Our goal is twofold: to deepen our understanding of the epistemic shortcomings in science-based policy during the pandemic, and to assess the merits and problems of Feyerabend’s arguments for epistemic pluralism as well as their relevance for policy-making. We discuss opportunities and challenges of integrating a plurality of viewpoints from within and outside science into policy advice thus contributing to discussions about normative issues concerning evidence and expertise in policy-making.</div><br /> <b>Pamela Robinson: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/ROBINU.pdf">Is Normative Uncertainty Irrelevant If Your Descriptive Uncertainty Depends on It?</a></b> (pdf, 10933 words)<br /> <div>According to ‘Excluders’, descriptive uncertainty—but not normative uncertainty— matters to what we ought to do. Recently, several authors have argued that those wishing to treat normative uncertainty differently from descriptive uncertainty face a <i>dependence problem</i> because one’s descriptive uncertainty can depend on one’s normative uncertainty. The aim of this paper is to determine whether the phenomenon of dependence poses a decisive problem for Excluders. I argue that existing arguments fail to show this, and that, while stronger ones can be found, Excluders can escape them.</div><br /> <b>Peter Duggins, Chris Eliasmith, Terrence C. Stewart: <a href="http://compneuro.uwaterloo.ca/files/publications/duggins2022a.pdf">Reinforcement Learning, Social Value Orientation, and Decision Making: Computational Models and Empirical Validation</a></b> (pdf, 4788 words)<br /> <div>Social environments often impose tradeoffs between pursuing personal goals and maintaining a favorable reputation. We studied how individuals navigate these tradeoffs using Reinforcement Learning (RL), paying particular attention to the role of social value orientation (SVO). We had human participants play an interated Trust Game against various software opponents and analyzed the behaviors. We then incorporated RL into two cognitive models, trained these RL agents against the same software opponents, and performed similar analyses. Our results show that the RL agents reproduce many interesting features in the human data, such as the dynamics of convergence during learning and the tendency to defect once reciprocation becomes impossible. We also endowed some of our agents with SVO by incorporating terms for altruism and inequality aversion into their reward functions. These prosocial agents differed from proself agents in ways that resembled the differences between prosocial and proself participants. This suggests that RL is a useful framework for understanding how people use feedback to make social decisions.</div><br /> <b>Thornton Lockwood: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/LOCTPC.pdf">The Partial Coherence of Cicero’s <i>De officiis</i></a></b> (pdf, 12558 words)<br /> <div>Martha Nussbaum has provided a sustained critique of Cicero’s <i>De officiis</i> (or <i>On Duties</i>), concerning what she claims is Cicero’s incoherent distinction between duties of justice, which are strict, cosmopolitan, and impartial, and duties of material aid, which are elastic, weighted towards those who are near and dear, and partial. No doubt, from Nussbaum’s cosmopolitan perspective, Cicero’s distinction between justice and beneficence seems problematic and lies at the root of modern moral failures to conceptualize adequately our obligations in situations of famine and global inequality. And yet a careful reading of Cicero’s <i>On Duties</i> shows many duties that appear to be partial. It is hard to believe that Cicero’s discussion of these “partial duties” was a mere oversight or omission on his part. Rather, Cicero seemed to have no problem endorsing what I will call the “partial coherence” of duties in the work—namely, the claim that asserting that duties are exhaustively partial or impartial is a false dichotomy. With the help of conceptual analysis by Richard Kraut, my paper aims to establish and defend Cicero’s “partial coherence” against Nussbaum’s criticisms.</div><br /> <b>Victor Kumar: <a href="http://www.victorkumar.org/uploads/6/1/5/2/61526489/may_and_kumar_-_harnessing_moral_psychology_to_reduce_meat_consumption.pdf">Harnessing Moral Psychology to Reduce Meat Consumption</a></b> (pdf, 10610 words)<br /> <div>How can we make moral progress on factory farming? Part of the answer lies in human moral psychology. Meat consumption remains high, despite increased awareness of its negative impact on animal welfare. Weakness of will is part of the explanation: acceptance of the ethical arguments does not always motivate changes in dietary habits. However, we draw on scientific evidence to argue that many consumers are not fully convinced that they morally ought to reduce their meat consumption. We then identify two key psychological mechanisms—motivated reasoning and social proof—that lead people to resist the ethical reasons. Finally, we show how to harness these psychological mechanisms to encourage reductions in meat consumption. A central lesson for moral progress generally is that durable social change requires socially embedded reasoning.</div><br /> <b>Waldemar Brys: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/BRYTDB.pdf">The Difference Between <i>Ren</i> and <i>Yi</i>: Mengzi’s Anti‑Guodianism at 6A4‑5</a></b> (pdf, 8877 words)<br /> <div>Passages from the recently excavated Guodian manuscripts bear a surprising resemblance to a position ascribed to Gaozi and his followers in the <i>Mengzi</i> at 6A4-5, namely that righteousness is “external.” Although such a resemblance has been noted, the philosophical implications of it for the debate between Gaozi and Mengzi and, by extension, for Mengzian ethics have been largely unexplored. I argue that a Guodian-inspired reading of 6A4-5 is one that takes the debate to be about whether standing in certain family relations makes a difference to whether one’s actions are righteous. Gaozi denies that it does, holding the view that one’s family relations, i.e., relations <i>internal</i> to the household, are irrelevant when it comes to matters of righteousness, while Mengzi disagrees, arguing that all relational properties, including family relations, are just as much reason-giving properties for performing righteous actions as they are in the case of performing benevolent actions. I argue that such a Guodian-based reading provides us a simple, yet explanatorily powerful reading of 6A4-5 that has broader implications for Mengzian ethics and our understanding of the early Chinese intellectual milieu in general.</div><br /> <b>Alexander Pruss's Blog: <a href="http://alexanderpruss.blogspot.com/2022/09/the-structure-of-morality.html">The structure of morality</a></b> (html, 193 words)<br /> <div>In physics, we hope for the following unification: there is a small set of simple laws, and all the rest of physics derives logically from these laws and the contingencies of the arrangement of stuff. &hellip;</div><br /> <b>wo's weblog: <a href="https://www.umsu.de/blog/2022/756">The subjective Bayesian answer to the problem of induction</a></b> (html, 1645 words)<br /> <div>The subjective Bayesian answer to the problem of induction Posted on Wednesday, 28 Sep 2022. Some people – important people, like Richard Jeffrey or Brian Skyrms – seem to believe that Laplace and de Finetti have solved the problem of induction, assuming nothing more than probabilism. &hellip;</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 28 September 20222022-09-28T23:59:00Z2022-09-28T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-28://<b>David James Barnett: <a href="https://davidjamesbar.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Graded-Ratifiability-final.pdf">Graded Ratifiability</a></b> (pdf, 13893 words)<br /> <div>An action is unratifiable when, on the assumption that one performs it, another option has higher expected utility. Unratifiable actions are often claimed to be somehow rationally defective. But in some cases where multiple options are unratifiable, one unratifiable option can still seem preferable to another. We should respond, I argue, by invoking a graded notion of ratifiability.</div><br /> <b>David James Barnett: <a href="https://davidjamesbar.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Intellectual-Autonomy-and-the-Cartesian-Circle-ABSTRACT.pdf">Intellectual Autonomy and the Cartesian Circle</a></b> (pdf, 361 words)<br /> <div>This paper explores an underappreciated interaction between Descartes’ epistemology and his metaphysics of the self, with the aim of explaining two puzzling features of his response to skepticism. The first feature is that Descartes vindicates the reliability of reason using reason, but not the reliability of other sources like sensory perception or testimony using sensory perception or testimony. The second is that Descartes grants momentary knowledge (<i>cognitio</i>) of a geometrical theorem to an atheist, who lacks proof of the reliability of his own cognitive faculties, yet denies this knowledge can persist when the the atheist is not consciously entertaining the theorem’s demonstration. The resolution of these puzzles, I argue, can be found only if we go beyond the epistemology to Descartes’ views on free will and mind-body interaction. According to Descartes, the difference between knowledge and true belief is that the knower is in control of whether he assents to the truth, whereas the believer is dependent on external events working out in his favor. Descartes furthermore thought that the immaterial mind interacts with a material brain, and that our freedom and responsibility extend only to what is internal to the mind.</div><br /> <b>David James Barnett: <a href="https://davidjamesbar.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/7-Cogito-and-Moore.pdf">Cogito and Moore</a></b> (pdf, 13655 words)<br /> <div><b></b>Self-verifying judgments like <i>I exist</i> seem rational, and self-defeating ones like <i>It will rain, but I don’t believe it will rain</i> seem irrational<i>.</i> But one’s evidence might support a self-defeating judgment, and fail to support a self-verifying one. This paper explains how it can be rational to defy one’s evidence if judgment is construed as a mental performance or act, akin to inner assertion. The explanation comes at significant cost, however. Instead of causing or constituting beliefs, judgments turn out to be mere epiphenomena, and self-verification and self-defeat lack the broader philosophical import often claimed for them.</div><br /> <b>Evan Malone: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/MALTPO-39.pdf">The Problem of Genre Explosion</a></b> (pdf, 7600 words)<br /> <div>Genre discourse is widespread in appreciative practice, whether that is about hip-hop music, romance novels, or film noir. It should be no surprise then, that philosophers of art have also been interested in genres. Whether they are giving accounts of genres as such or of particular genres, genre talk abounds in philosophy as much as it does the popular discourse. As a result, theories of genre proliferate as well. However, in their accounts, philosophers have so far focused on capturing all of the categories of art that we think of as genres and have focused less on ensuring that only the categories we think are genres are captured by those theories. Each of these theories populates the world with far too many genres because they call a wide class of mere categories of art genres. I call this the problem of genre explosion. In this paper, I survey the existing accounts of genre and describe the kinds of considerations they employ in determining whether a work is a work of a given genre. After this, I demonstrate the ways in which the problem of genre explosion arises for all of these theories and discuss some solutions those theories could adopt that will ultimately not work. Finally, I argue that the problem of genre explosion is best solved by adopting a social view of genres, which can capture the difference between genres and mere categories of art.</div><br /> <b>John Morrison: <a href="http://www.columbia.edu/~jrm2182/Morrison%20-%20Three%20Medieval%20Aristotelians.pdf">Three Medieval Aristotelians on Numerical Identity and Time</a></b> (pdf, 15121 words)<br /> <div>Aquinas, Ockham, and Burdan all claim that a person can be numerically identical over time, despite changes in size, shape, and color. How can we reconcile this with the Indiscernibility of Identicals, the principle that numerical identity implies indiscernibility across time? Almost all contemporary metaphysicians regard the Indiscernibility of Identicals as axiomatic. But I will argue that Aquinas, Ockham, and Burdan would reject it, perhaps in favor of a principle restricted to indiscernibility at a time.</div><br /> <b>Michael Garnett: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/GARGLA-2.docx">Ghost-Written Lives: Autonomy, Deference, and Self-Authorship</a></b> (doc, 13318 words)<br /> <div>She buys the clothes <i>he</i> prefers, invites the guests <i>he</i> wants to entertain, and makes love whenever <i>he</i> is in the mood. She willingly moves to a new city in order for him to have a more attractive job, counting her own friendships and geographical preferences insignificant by comparison. She loves her husband, but her conduct is not simply an expression of love. She is happy, but she does not subordinate herself as a means to happiness. She does not simply defer to her husband in certain spheres as a trade-off for his deference in other spheres. On the contrary, she tends not to form her own interests, values, and ideals, and when she does, she counts them as less important than her husband’s... she is quite glad, and proud, to serve her husband as she does.</div><br /> <b>Ovidiu Cristinel Stoica: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21212/1/QM-requires-conspiracy.pdf">Quantum mechanics requires “conspiracy”</a></b> (pdf, 4818 words)<br /> <div>Quantum states containing records of incompatible outcomes of quantum measurements are valid states in the tensor product Hilbert space. Since they contain false records, they conflict with the Born rule and with our observations. I show that excluding them requires a fine-tuning to a zero-measure subspace of the Hilbert space that seems “conspiratorial”, in the sense that ˆ it depends on future events, in particular of future choices of the measurement settings, ˆ it depends on the evolution law (normally thought to be independent of the initial conditions), ˆ it violates statistical independence (even in interpretations that satisfy it in the context of Bell’s theorem, like standard quantum mechanics, pilot-wave theories, collapse theories, many-worlds etc.). Even the innocent assumption that there are measuring devices requires this kind of fine tuning. These results are independent of the interpretation of quantum mechanics. To explain away this apparent fine-tuning, I propose that an yet unknown law or superselection rule may restrict the full tensor product Hilbert space to this very special subspace.</div><br /> <b>Philipp Haueis: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21213/1/Haueis_PSA_2022_Revising%20scientific%20concepts%20with%20multiple%20meanings.pdf">Revising scientific concepts with multiple meanings: beyond pluralism and eliminativism</a></b> (pdf, 5009 words)<br /> <div><b></b>In the recent debate about scientific concepts, pluralists claim that scientists can legitimately use concepts with multiple meanings, while eliminativists argue that scientists should abandon such concepts in favor of more precisely defined subconcepts. While pluralists and eliminativists already share key assumptions about conceptual development, their normative positions still appear to suggest that the process of revising concepts is a dichotomous choice between keeping the concept and abandoning it altogether. To move beyond pluralism and eliminativism, I discuss three options of revising concepts in light of new findings, and when scientists should choose each of them.</div><br /> <b>Samuel Z. Elgin: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/ELGRBP.pdf">Resolution by Proxy</a></b> (pdf, 3002 words)<br /> <div>In a series of recent papers, I presented a puzzle and theory of definition.2 I did not, however, indicate how the theory resolves the puzzle. This was an oversight, on my part, and one I hope to correct. My aim here is to provide that resolution: to demonstrate that my theory can consistently embrace the principles I prove to be inconsistent. To the best of my knowledge, this theory is the only one capable of this embrace—which marks yet another advantage it has over competitors.</div><br /> <b>Stephen D’Arcy: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/DARMAA-6.docx">Marxism as a Learning Process: The Epistemic Rationality of Precedential Reasoning</a></b> (doc, 4991 words)<br /> <div>In everyday justifications offered on behalf of contested claims, simply noting that someone once said something about case X offers little or no help in substantiating a claim about case Y, regardless of how esteemed the speaker may have been. For instance, if I want to know how many people live in Greater Manchester today, it is of very little help to cite the remark by Friedrich Engels, in <i>The Condition of the Working-Class in England in 1844</i>, that Greater Manchester “contains about four hundred thousand inhabitants, rather more than less” (Engels 1892, p. 45).</div><br /> <b>The Splintered Mind: <a href="http://schwitzsplinters.blogspot.com/2022/09/the-value-of-self-contradiction-in.html">The Value of Self-Contradiction in Zhuangzi</a></b> (html, 1192 words)<br /> <div>The ancient Chinese philosopher Zhuangzi (4th c. BCE) often contradicted himself, or at least made statements whose superficial readings stood in tension with each other. This self-contradiction, I contend, is not sloppy, nor does it necessarily reflect different authorship of different parts of the text or different stages in the development of Zhuangzi's thought. &hellip;</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 27 September 20222022-09-27T23:59:00Z2022-09-27T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-27://<b>Camillo Fiore: <a href="https://uc878033a89468be1442cbf07542.dl.dropboxusercontent.com/cd/0/get/Btur80YfibVwRCkF-9Gf1JzshPQz29Z2JKtHqV4mq71b60LM0Bvw_x-BdiFlNgff95IVZw3zLHj7UUN6K8SE_8EHlBDkf7ShFd4O5GZGB1Xiy4QfDyjVrmYyuAeDOZVmHWOJ4QIT7SKPLR62TSdkVWN3xlnJm4P5MHUZOoglZnfYEkohWE1ILc8UpclRoJ7nBvU/file?dl=1">Inferential Constants</a></b> (pdf, 13255 words)<br /> <div>A metainference is usually understood as a pair consisting of a collection of inferences, called premises, and a single inference, called conclusion. In the last few years, much attention has been paid to the study of metainferences—and, in particular, to the question of what are the valid metainferences of a given logic. So far, however, this study has been done in quite a poor language. Our usual sequent calculi have no way to represent, e.g. negations, disjunctions or conjunctions of inferences. In this paper we tackle this expressive issue. We assume some background sentential language as given and define what we call an inferential language, that is, a language whose atomic formulas are inferences. We provide a model-theoretic characterization of validity for this language—relative to some given characterization of validity for the background sentential language—and provide a proof-theoretic analysis of validity. We argue that our novel language has fruitful philosophical applications. Lastly, we generalize some of our definitions and results to arbitrary metainferential levels.</div><br /> <b>Carrie Figdor: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21211/1/WhatCogIfNotHumanCog28-Bio&PhilRevised-Final.pdf">What Could Cognition Be, If Not Human Cognition?: Individuating Cognitive Abilities In the Light of Evolution</a></b> (pdf, 11330 words)<br /> <div>This paper argues for the individuation of cognitive abilities within cognitive sciences based on the same phylogenetic framework that underlies the individuation of parts and traits at multiple levels of biological organization in comparative biology. When our scientific interests directly involve cross-species comparisons, this is the operative framework. When they do not, the units we are interested in, as explananda or explanantia, presuppose this comparative framework.</div><br /> <b>Lucie White, Philippe van Basshuysen, Mathias Frisch: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21209/1/White+et+al-Final.pdf">When Is Lockdown Justified?</a></b> (pdf, 12117 words)<br /> <div>How could the initial, drastic decisions to implement “lockdowns” to control the spread of Covid-19 infections be justifiable, when they were made on the basis of such uncertain evidence? We defend the imposition of lockdowns in some countries by, first, looking at the evidence that undergirded the decision (focusing particularly on the decision-making process in the United Kingdom); second, arguing that this provided sufficient grounds to restrict liberty, given the circumstances; and third, defending the use of poorly empirically constrained epidemiological models as tools that can legitimately guide public policy.</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 26 September 20222022-09-26T23:59:00Z2022-09-26T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-26://<b>David Builes, Michele Odisseas Impagnatiello: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/BUIAEA.pdf">An Empirical Argument for Presentism</a></b> (pdf, 10647 words)<br /> <div>According to orthodoxy, our best physical theories strongly support Eternalism over Presentism. Our goal is to argue against this consensus, by arguing that a certain overlooked aspect of our best physical theories strongly supports Presentism over Eternalism.</div><br /> <b>Famira Racy, Alain Morin: <a href="https://www2.mtroyal.ca/~amorin/FrequencyChapter.pdf">Frequency, Content, and Functions of Self-Reported Inner Speech in Young Adults: A Synthesis</a></b> (pdf, 8859 words)<br /> <div><b></b>In this chapter we summarize results obtained in five studies (n = 1027) using an open format self-report procedure aimed at collecting naturally occurring inner speech in young adults. We look at existing inner speech measures as well as their respective strengths and limitations, emphasizing the appropriateness of an open format self-report method for our purpose. We describe the coding scheme used to organize inner speech instances produced by our participants. We present results in terms of the most frequently self-reported inner speech topics, which sheds light on the typical perceived content and functions of inner speech use. Some of these are: negative emotions, problem solving/thinking, planning/time management, self-motivating speech, emotional control, and self-reflection. These results are consistent with the self-regulatory and self-reflective functions of inner speech discussed in the literature, as well as with what several existing questionnaires aim to measure. However, our results also show that young adults in our samples talk to themselves about various topics and for multiple functions not captured by current research on inner speech. We conclude with a brief discussion regarding the relevance of our results for education.</div><br /> <b>Kati Kish Bar-On: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21200/1/From%20Philosophical%20Tradistions.pdf">From Philosophical Traditions to Scientific Developments: Reconsidering the Response to Brouwer’s Intuitionism</a></b> (pdf, 12397 words)<br /> <div>Brouwer’s intuitionistic program was an intriguing attempt to reform the foundations of mathematics that eventually did not prevail. The current paper offers a new perspective on the scientific community’s lack of reception to Brouwer’s intuitionism by considering it in light of Michael Friedman’s model of parallel transitions in philosophy and science, specifically focusing on Friedman’s story of Einstein’s theory of relativity. Such a juxtaposition raises onto the surface the differences between Brouwer’s and Einstein’s stories and suggests that contrary to Einstein’s story, the philosophical roots of Brouwer’s intuitionism cannot be traced to any previously established philosophical traditions. The paper concludes by showing how the intuitionistic inclinations of Hermann Weyl and Abraham Fraenkel serve as telling cases of how individuals are involved in setting in motion, adopting, and resisting framework transitions during periods of disagreement within a discipline.</div><br /> <b>Nathaniel Baron-Schmitt, Daniel Muñoz: <a href="https://philpapers.org/archive/BARSAT-36.pdf">Supererogation and the Limits of Reasons</a></b> (pdf, 7644 words)<br /> <div>Supererogatory acts are good deeds beyond the call of duty, ranging from friendly favors to saintly sacrifices to risky rescues. As any reader of this handbook will have noticed, philosophers disagree deeply about what supererogation is, and whether it is even possible. To some extent, this is a verbal dispute. “Supererogation” is not ordinary language, like “good” or “wrong.” It is a “quasi-technical term” (Heyd 1982), whose meaning is somewhat up for grabs. If you say that supererogation must spring from a noble motive, whereas we say that only needs to be a good thing to do, there’s no point in shouting at each other about the true essence of supererogation. We are better off admitting that we just prefer different definitions.</div><br /> <b>Shan Gao: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21202/1/quantum%20ontology%202022.pdf">On the ontologies of quantum theories</a></b> (pdf, 3459 words)<br /> <div>What is the ontology of a realist quantum theory such as Bohmian mechanics? This has been an important but debated issue in the foundations of quantum mechanics. In this paper, I present a new result which may help examine the ontology of a realist physical theory and make it more complete. It is that when different values of a physical quantity lead to different evolution of the assumed ontic state of an isolated system in a theory, this physical quantity also represents something in the ontology of the theory. Moreover, I use this result to analyze the ontologies of several realist quantum theories. It is argued that in Bohmian mechanics and collapse theories such as GRWm and GRWf, the wave function should be included in the ontology of the theory. In addition, when admitting the reality of the wave function, mass, charge and spin should also be taken as the properties of a quantum system.</div><br /> Articles and blog posts found on 25 September 20222022-09-25T23:59:00Z2022-09-25T23:59:00ZPhilosophical Progresstag:www.philosophicalprogress.org,2022-09-25://<b>Carl Brusse, Kevin J. S. Zollman: <a href="https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007/s11229-022-03742-7.pdf">Explaining costly religious practices: credibility enhancing displays and signaling theories</a></b> (pdf, 13920 words)<br /> <div>This paper examines and contrasts two closely related evolutionary explanations in human behaviour: signalling theory, and the theory of Credibility Enhancing Displays (CREDs). Both have been proposed to explain costly, dangerous, or otherwise ‘extravagant’ social behaviours, especially in the context of religious belief and practice, and each have spawned significant lines of empirical research. However, the relationship between these two theoretical frameworks is unclear, and research which engages both of them (especially in systematic comparison) is largely absent. In this paper we seek to address this gap at the theoretical level, examining the core differences between the two approaches and prospects and conditions for future empirical testing. We clarify the dynamical and mechanistic bases of signalling and CREDs as explanatory models and contrast the previous uses to which they have been put in the human sciences.</div><br /> <b>Gianluca Caterina, Rocco Gangle: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21196/1/NativeAlphaFinal.pdf">Native diagrammatic soundness and completeness proofs for Peirce’s Existential Graphs (Alpha)</a></b> (pdf, 8409 words)<br /> <div>Peirce’s diagrammatic system of Existential Graphs (EGα) is a logical proof system corresponding to the Propositional Calculus (P L). Most known proofs of soundness and completeness for EG<sub>α</sub> depend upon a translation of Peirce’s diagrammatic syntax into that of a suitable Frege-style system. In this paper, drawing upon standard results but using the native diagrammatic notational framework of the graphs, we present a purely syntactic proof of soundness, and hence consistency, for EG<sub>α</sub>, along with two separate completeness proofs that are constructive in the sense that we provide an algorithm in each case to construct an EGα formal proof starting from the empty Sheet of Assertion, given any expression that is in fact a tautology according to the standard semantics of the system.</div><br /> <b>Jos Hornikx: <a href="https://www.hope.uzh.ch/scoms/article/download/2609/2266">An exploratory test of an intuitive evaluation method of perceived argument strength</a></b> (pdf, 7976 words)<br /> <div>According to Mercier and Sperber (2009, 2011, 2017), people have an immediate and intuitive feeling about the strength of an argument. These intuitive evaluations are not captured by current evaluation methods of argument strength, yet they could be important to predict the extent to which people accept the claim supported by the argument. In an exploratory study, therefore, a newly developed intuitive evaluation method to assess argument strength was compared to an explicit argument strength evaluation method (the PAS scale; Zhao et al., 2011), on their ability to predict claim acceptance (predictive validity) and on their sensitivity to differences in the manipulated quality of arguments (construct validity). An experimental study showed that the explicit argument strength evaluation performed well on the two validity measures. The intuitive evaluation measure, on the other hand, was not found to be valid. Suggestions for other ways of constructing and testing intuitive evaluation measures are presented.</div><br /> <b>Keith Meadows: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21190/1/Meadows-final.pdf">Perspectives Interpreting Patient-Reported Outcome Measures: Narrative and the “Fusion of Horizons”</a></b> (pdf, 6850 words)<br /> <div>Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) are valued in healthcare evaluation for bringing patient perspectives forward, and enabling patient-centered care. The range of evidence permitted by PROMs to measure patients’ quality of life narrowly denies subjective experience. This neglect is rooted in the epistemic assumptions that ground PROMs, and the tension between the standardization (the task of measurement) and the individual and unique circumstances of patients. To counter the resulting methodological shortcomings, this article proposes a hermeutical approach and interpretive phenomenology instead of generic qualitative research methods.</div><br /> <b>Nicholas Covaleski: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21191/1/Covaleski-final.pdf">Perspectives Dementia and the Boundaries of Secular Personhood</a></b> (pdf, 4642 words)<br /> <div>For many, dementia disrupts basic ideas about what it means to be human, raising profound philosophical and theological questions on the nature of personhood. In this article I ask what dementia might reveal about personhood in a “secular age.” I suggest that the ill-fitting relationship between Western bioethics, with its emphasis on autonomy, and dementia throws into relief the boundaries of a secular self, and I tease out the ethical implications of the limits of those boundaries by highlighting a biopolitics of secularism. Lastly, I offer a theological account of dementia that situates dependence as a central feature of the human condition, and enriches a secular biomedical understanding of this neurocognitive disorder.</div><br /> <b>Stephanie Dornschneider-Elkink: <a href="https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/4462C0A91818A8362D26499706E01F3B/S0017257X22000379a.pdf/div-class-title-does-non-violent-repression-have-stronger-dampening-effects-than-state-violence-insight-from-an-emotion-based-model-of-non-violent-dissent-div.pdf">Does Non-violent Repression Have Stronger Dampening Effects than State Violence? Insight from an Emotion-Based Model of Non-violent Dissent</a></b> (pdf, 10534 words)<br /> <div>The effects of repression on dissent are debated widely. We contribute to the debate by developing an agent-based model grounded in ethnographic interviews with dissidents. Building on new psychology research, the model integrates emotions as a dynamic context of dissent. The model moreover differentiates between four repression types: violence, street blockages, curfews and Facebook cuts. The simulations identify short-term dampening effects of each repression type, with a maximum effect related to non-violent forms of repression. The simulations also show long-term spurring effects, which are most strongly associated with state violence. In addition, the simulations identify nonlinear short-term spurring effects of state violence on early stage dissent. Such effects are not observed for the remaining repressive measures. Contrasting with arguments that violence deters dissent, this suggests that violence may fuel dissent, while non-violent repression might suppress it.</div><br /> <b>Stephanie Harvard, Eric Winsberg: <a href="http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/21189/1/70-Article+Text-Final.pdf">The Examination Room Causal Inference, Moral Intuition, and Modeling in a Pandemic</a></b> (pdf, 5669 words)<br /> <div>Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, people have been eager to learn what factors, and especially what public health policies, cause infection rates to wax and wane. But figuring out conclusively what causes what is difficult in complex systems with nonlinear dynamics, such as pandemics. We review some of the challenges that scientists have faced in answering quantitative causal questions during the Covid-19 pandemic, and suggest that these challenges are a reason to augment the moral dimension of conversations about causal inference. We take a lesson from Martha Nussbaum—who cautions us not to think we have just one question on our hands when we have at least two—and apply it to modeling for causal inference in the context of cost-benefit analysis.</div><br /> <b>Alexander Pruss's Blog: <a href="http://alexanderpruss.blogspot.com/2022/09/a-strict-propriety-argument-for.html">A strict propriety argument for probabilism without any continuity assumptions</a></b> (html, 337 words)<br /> <div>Here’s an accuracy-theoretic argument for probabilism (the thesis that only probabilities are rationally admissible credences) on finite spaces that does not make any continuity assumptions on the scoring rule. &hellip;</div><br /> <b>James K. Stanescu's blog: <a href="http://www.criticalanimal.com/2022/09/the-sophist-socrates-and-other-heresies.html">The Sophist Socrates and Other Heresies</a></b> (html, 1255 words)<br /> <div>I've been teaching Classical Rhetoric this semester, and I have become convinced of something I have long believed. Not just convinced, but really discovered that for anyone who studies this stuff, it seems to be an obvious truth (so obvious in the literature, I almost decided not to write this post). &hellip;</div><br />