Cover of Symposion
Already a subscriber? - Login here
Not yet a subscriber? - Subscribe here

Browse by:



Displaying: 1-20 of 188 documents


research articles
1. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Alex Blum Kripke on Identity Statements
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
We show that Kripke’s argument for the necessity of identity statements relating objects a and b by their rigid designators demands an additional significant premise.
2. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Robert Donoghue Hegel’s Treatment of the Free Will Problem: A Conceptual Oversight and Its Implications for Legal Theory
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
G.W.F. Hegel offers a thorough, complex, and unique theory of free will in the Philosophy of Right. In what follows, I argue that Hegel’s conceptualization of free will makes the mistake of collapsing the possibility of organic freedom (the ability to act freely of causal determination) into the potential for moral freedom (the capacity to act in accordance with Reason). This article engages in three distinct tasks in making this argument. First, I provide a critical overview of Hegel’s conception of free will – namely, how he envisages the movement from the abstract, incomplete, and undeveloped will, to that of a concrete, complete, and developed one through the unfolding of Reason. Second, I introduce the contemporary debate regarding nomological determinism between libertarians and skeptics, of both the in compatibilist and compatibilist variety. I suggest that, in the context of the modern free will debate, Hegel is best categorized as a compatibilist as he both accepts causal determinism but remains committed to the notion that certain persons can act in concert with their own volition. Third, I argue that Hegel’s compatibilist understanding of free will has important and problematic consequences for legal theory, particularly normative jurisprudence. Compatibilism, generally, and Hegel’s particular version, substantiates the idea of basic moral desert which poses a serious threat to the possibility of moral progress from a retributive justice system to a consequentialist one.
3. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Janelle Pötzsch The Early J.S. Mill on Marriage and Divorce
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
This paper discusses Mill’s early essay on marriage and divorce (1832) and gives two possible sources of influence for it: Plato’s arguments on the appropriate scope of the law in book IV of his Republic and Unitarian ideas on motherhood. It demonstrates that Plato’s Republic and Mill’s essay both emphasize the crucial role of background conditions in achieving desirable social aims. Similar to Plato’s claim that the law should provide only a rough framework and not concern itself with questions of etiquette (Republic, 425d), Mill envisions a society in which men and women meet as equals and hence are in no need of marriage laws. Besides, this paper will relate Mill’s essay on marriage and divorce to Unitarian ideas on the social role of women to account for his reservations about the gainful employment of married women and mothers. Mill’s claim that the rightful employment of a mother is “the training of the affections” (Mill 1970, 76) is fueled by the Unitarian conception of women as the moral educators of future citizens.
4. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Daniel Rönnedal The Highest Good and the Relation between Virtue and Happiness: A Kantian Approach
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
The paper develops a Kantian view of the highest good and the relation between virtue and happiness. Several Kantian theses are defended, among them the thesis that the highest good is realized only if every virtuous individual is happy, the view that virtue is neither necessary nor sufficient for happiness, and the proposition that virtue is both necessary and sufficient for the worthiness of being happy. The author argues that the highest good ought to be realized and that it ought to be that everyone who is virtuous is happy. To prove these claims, the author will use techniques developed by modern deontic logicians. According to Kant, we do not have an immediate duty to promote our own happiness, the aim of morality being not personal satisfaction but rather virtue and the good will. The important question is not “How do I become happy?” but “How do I become good?”. The arguments in this paper support this view.
5. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Rajesh Sampath An Inhuman God for Our Inhuman Times: Death in Heidegger’s Being and Time and Jesus’s Agony in the Garden
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
This paper attempts a careful reading of chapter I of Division Two, particularly section 53, on death in Heidegger’s Being and Time (1927). Our aim is to deconstruct some of Heidegger’s assumptions while imagining the margins of his text that could warrant a comparison and contrast with the biblical theological material of the New Testament. In parallel by reading the Synoptic Gospel of Mark on Jesus’s agony in the garden prior to his arrest, trial, death, and resurrection, we can initiate a series of comparisons and contrasts. For Heidegger, there is no conception or idea beyond death, and yet death itself as a possibility, even as the greatest possibility to be, is not like any other point in time that a human being can experience, grasp, remember, or anticipate while they are alive. It is not the witnessing of the medically certified death of another person or animal. Out of this paradox, we will argue for a greater philosophical degree of complexity that Jesus the human being experiences when it comes to the possibility of death and the impossibility to surmount it. In the same token we cannot exclude the theological doctrine of the single hypostatic substance (as two natures) of the historically finite person Jesus as human flesh and divine transcendence. So philosophically speaking, his death is unique even though its event as physical expiration on the Cross is like any other human being. However, the physical death of the human called Jesus does not answer the question of the meaning of death in the split-natured unified hypostatic substance of Christ, the Second Person of the Triune Christian God, which includes the First Person of the Father and the Third Person of the Holy Spirit. By tracing a series of complicated philosophical relations, we hope to contribute to the fields of philosophical theology, albeit a heterodox one, and the philosophy of religion while attending to the inherent secular limits that Heidegger’s philosophy requires in so far as he imagines his project as ‘ontological,’ and not ‘theological’ or ‘historical.’ We conclude with certain philosophical speculations to what is other to both Heidegger’s ontology and mainstream Christian theology.
6. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Information about Authors
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
7. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
About the Journal
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
8. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Author Guidelines
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
research articles
9. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Arnold Cusmariu The Cogito Paradox
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
The Cogito formulation in Discourse on Method attributes properties to one conceptual category that belong to another. Correcting the error ends up defeating Descartes’ response to skepticism. His own creation, the Evil Genius, is to blame.
10. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Michael F. Duggan Looking for Black Swans: Critical Elimination and History
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
This article examines the basis for testing historical claims and proffers the observation that the historical method is akin to the scientific method in that it utilizes critical elimination rather than justification. Building on the critical rationalism of Karl Popper – and specifically the deductive component of the scientific method called falsification – I examine his tetradic schema and adapt it for the specific purpose of historical analysis by making explicit a discrete step of critical testing, even though the schema is adequate as Popper expresses it and the elimination of error occurs at all steps of analysis. I also add a discrete step of critical elimination to Popper’s schema even though the elimination of error occurs at every step of analysis. The basis for critical elimination history is the demonstrable counterexample. The study of history will never approach the precision of science – history deals with open systems that cannot be replicated like experiments guided by fundamental laws. But just because we cannot know something with the rigor of science does not mean that we cannon know it better than we do. There may be no objective truth in an absolute sense, but there is a distinction to be made between well-tested and poorly tested theories and therefore between history done well and history done with less analytical rigor. What I hope to show is how our historical knowledge may progress through good faith critical discussion – history is discussion – and the elimination of error.
11. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Samson Liberman Orcid-ID Attention Deficit: Alienation in Platform Capitalism
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
The aim of this paper is a socio-philosophical analysis of attention deficit phenomenon, which is being detected at the intersection of several subject areas (psychiatry, theory of journalism, economics). The main methodological instrument of the study is a Marxist principle of alienation. Alienation of attention, which, on the one hand, is being understood as a process of producing attention as a commodity, and on the other one – as the process of producing a person as a user of the platform, provides the methodological basis, necessary for a holistic view of the phenomenon. The main differences of attention alienation from alienation of labor and desire are considered within the paper. The possibility of a modern form of alienation is associated primarily with the emergence of the new forms of capital – platforms, providing infrastructure for the interaction of other users and aimed at collection and procession of large amounts of data. The main aspects of attention management: game, content sharing and design have been distinguished within the paper. The main consequences of alienation of attention for the structure of the individual and society have been spelled out. The effects of the spread of gaming techniques of attention management and content distribution techniques specific to social networks have been considered. It being is suggested that there is a correlation between the spread of ADHD diagnosis and the spread of attention management technologies, and, as well, between the distribution of attention management technology and the ‘renaissance’ of social in the social theory.
12. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Daniel Rönnedal Perfect Happiness
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
In this paper, I will develop a new theory of the nature of happiness, or “perfect happiness.” I will examine what perfect happiness is and what it is not and I will try to answer some fundamental questions about this property. According to the theory, which I shall call “the fulfillment theory,” perfect happiness is perfect fulfillment. The analysis of happiness in this paper is a development of the old idea that happiness is getting what you want and can be classified as a kind of desire-satisfaction theory. According to the fulfillment theory of happiness, it is necessarily the case that an individual x is perfectly happy if and only if all x’s wants are fulfilled. The interpretation of this basic definition is important, since the consequences of the particular version defended in this essay are radically different from the consequences of many other popular theories of happiness. The fulfillment theory is also quite different from most other desire-satisfaction theories of happiness. We will see that it has many interesting consequences and that it can be defended against some potentially serious counterarguments. The upshot is that the analysis of (perfect) happiness developed in the present paper is quite attractive.
13. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Rajesh Sampath The Question as to Why We Have to Live Out the Agony of Our Epoch and its Fundamental Un-Answerability: A Reading of the Preface to the 1967 Edition of Klossowski's Original 1947 Sade My Neighbor
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
This paper excavates certain impulses that are buried in Pierre Klossowski’s 1968 edition of his original 1947 work, Sade My Neighbor. We argue that the self-suffocating nature of our historical present reveals the problem of an epochal threshold: in which twenty-first century democracy itself is threatened with death and violence in delusional neofascist attempts at national self-preservation. This speaks to a deeper enigma of time, epochal shifts, and the mystery of historical time; but it does so in a manner that escapes classical problems in the philosophy of history. Rather, by returning to Klossowski’s late 1940s and late 1960s contexts while reoccupying the New Testament question of Jesus’s foresakeness on the Cross, we unravel a series of paradoxes and aporias that attempt to deepen metaphysical problems of time, death, and the sovereign autonomy of human freedom and existence. Ultimately the paper concludes by offering certain speculative philosophical constructions on why today’s self-cannibalization of democracy has its roots in unresolved tensions that span these two poles: a.) the primordial secret of early Christian proclamation of Jesus’s death and b.) the post-Christian Sadean experiment of a philosophical revolution that was doomed to implode when the valorization of pain, suffering, and death fails to fill the vacuum left behind by atheism.
14. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Information about Authors
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
15. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
About the Journal
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
16. Symposion: Volume > 8 > Issue: 1
Author Guidelines
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
17. Symposion: Volume > 7 > Issue: 2
Helen Beebee, Anne-Marie McCallion Diversity in Philosophy: Editors’ Introduction
view |  rights & permissions | cited by
18. Symposion: Volume > 7 > Issue: 2
Zahra Thani, Derek Anderson Third-Order Epistemic Exclusion in Professional Philosophy
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
Third-order exclusion is a form of epistemic oppression in which the epistemic lifeway of a dominant group disrupts the epistemic agency of members of marginalized groups. In this paper we apply situated perspectives in order to argue that philosophy as a discipline imposes third-order exclusions on members of marginalized groups who are interested in participating in philosophy. We examine a number of specific aspects of the epistemic lifeway embodied by academic philosophy and show how this produces inaccessibility to the discipline. In addition to critiquing the discipline and its methods we also use this discussion to elaborate on third-order exclusion itself. We conclude by proposing an intersectional pedagogy as a step toward creating a more accessible discipline.
19. Symposion: Volume > 7 > Issue: 2
Anne-Marie McCallion An Interview with Rianna Walcott
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
This is an interview with Rianna Walcott, the co-founder of Project Myopia – a student-led initiative to decolonise university curricula. The discussion explores the difference between ‘diversity’ and ‘decolonisation’: how these two concepts relate to and contradict one another. Walcott outlines some of the recent student efforts to ‘decolonise’ the university and we discuss the extent to which this represents a paradoxical ambition, as well as the limitations of attempting to change the university from the inside. Walcott also explores the significance of some practical measures which can be – or have been – put into place when attempting to diversify or decolonise curricula, and we close by discussing the significance of Philosophy in particular with respect to decolonising efforts, and the steps which need to be taken in order to begin the process of ‘decolonising’ philosophy.
20. Symposion: Volume > 7 > Issue: 2
Helen Beebee, Anne-Marie McCallion In Defence of Different Voices
abstract | view |  rights & permissions | cited by
Louise Antony draws a now well-known distinction between two explanatory models for researching and addressing the issue of women’s underrepresentation in philosophy – the ‘Different Voices’ (DV) and ‘Perfect Storm’ (PS) models – and argues that, in view of PS’s considerably higher social value, DV should be abandoned. We argue that Antony misunderstands the feminist framework that she takes to underpin DV, and we reconceptualise DV in a way that aligns with a proper understanding of the metaphilosophical framework that underpins it. On the basis of that reconceptualisation – together with the rejection of her claim that DV posits ‘cognitive’ differences between women and men – we argue that Antony’s negative assessment of DV’s social value is mistaken. And, we argue, this conclusion does not depend on endorsing the relevant feminist metaphilosophical framework. Whatever our metaphilosophical commitments, then, we should all agree that DV research should be actively pursued rather than abandoned.