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Displaying: 1-10 of 203 documents


1. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Emily Fox-Penner, Aaron Suduiko Editor's Introduction
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global history of philosophy
2. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Jonardon Ganeri What Is Philosophy?: A Cross-cultural Conversation in the Crossroads Court of Chosroes
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Three rival conceptions of philosophy overlap, we may imagine, in the Sassinid court of Chosroes (r. 531–579). One is due to Priscian, a refugee from Athens after Justinian’s closing of the philosophical schools. A second and third are from India: the Buddhist conception of Vasubandhu and the Nyāya view of Vātsyāyana. I will argue that the rivalry between these three understandings of philosophy ultimately rests in three different conceptions of what makes an inner life one’s own.
free will
3. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
John Heil Real Agency
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Peter van Inwagen’s Consequence Argument makes salient the difficulties facing attempts to reconcile determinism and agency. Others go further. Derk Pereboom, for instance, contends that science provides compelling evidence that no action is free, and Galen Strawson argues that conditions for genuinely free action are flatly unsatisfiable. Against such skepticism about free will, the paper introduces considerations in support of the idea that there are probably good reasons to think that conditions for free actions—real agency—are sometimes satisfied, that ascriptions of agency are sometimes true, but that truthmakers for these ascriptions could be wholly deterministic in a way that might seem to, but does not in fact, place them at odds with the possibility of genuinely free action.
moral and political philosophy
4. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Maria Svedberg, Torbjörn Tännsjö Consequentialism and Free Will: The Conditional Analysis Resuscitated
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Many moral theories incorporate the idea that when an action is wrong, it is wrong because that there was something else that the agent could and should have done instead. Most notable among these are consequentialist theories. According to consequentialism an action A is wrong if and only if there was another action B that the agent could have performed such that, if the agent had performed B instead of A, the consequences would have been better. Relatively little attention has been given to the question of how to understand the meaning of ‘could have’ in this specific context. However, without an answer to this question, consequentialist theories fail to yield determinate verdicts about the deontic status of actions in real scenarios. It is here argued that the following conditional analysis provides the required answer and gives us the most plausible version of consequentialism: the agent could have done B instead of A if and only if, there is a decision such that had the agent made this decision, then she would have done B, and not A. Such a conditional analysis has been universally rejected as an analysis of the general meaning of ‘could have’, but we show that in the specific context of specifying the meaning of ‘could have’ in a consequentialist criterion of right and wrong action, all the standard objections to it fail.
5. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Moises Vaca The Contractualist Dilemma
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In moral and political philosophy many contractualist views appeal to hypothetical consent when justifying their proposed normative contents. In this paper I argue that all of them fail. In particular, I defend three claims. First, I consider and develop what I call the common objection to contractualism: that the stipulation of a hypothetical consent adds nothing to the independent reasons offered in contractualist procedures in favor of the normative content in question. Second, I hold that this objection gives rise to what I call the contractualist dilemma. Third, in light of the dilemma, I argue that contractualism should be understood in a non-justificatory way. These three claims might sound familiar to readers versed on the contractualist tradition. It is striking, however, how many contemporary authors continue to defend contractualism as a method of justification despite these arguments. This paper is thus a strong invitation to finally abandon the justificatory interpretation of this view.
interview
6. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Taimur Aziz, Seyyed Hossein Nasr On Tradition, Metaphysics, and Modernity
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religion and society
7. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Guillermo Hurtado The Dialogue as an Adventure
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How can believers and unbelievers engage in a fruitful dialogue? In order to answer this question from a postsecular position, it is claimed that a profound dialogue between believers and unbelievers requires them to go beyond openness and reach adventurousness.
ethics
8. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Naomi Zack Starting from Injustice: Justice, Applicative Justice, and Injustice Theory
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Political philosophers have traditionally focused on justice and regarded equality as an ideal despite its lack of factual support; normative universal human equality is a new, twentieth-century regulative moral construct. The theoretical focus on justice overlooks what most people care about in reality—injustice. In modern democratic society, formal or legal equality now co-exists with real inequality. One reason is that justice is not applied to all groups in society and applicative justice––applying justice to those who don’t now receive it––is a remedy. But injustice theory also includes other forms of injustice such as legal, humanitarian, and injustice without blame or responsibility.
in memory of hilary putnam
9. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Martin Bernstein Introduction
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10. The Harvard Review of Philosophy: Volume > 24
Yemima Ben-Menahem Hilary Putnam: Philosophy with a Human Face
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