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1. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
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2. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Brian Bajzek, Alterity, Similarity, and Dialectic: Methodological Reflections on the Turn to the Other
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This paper builds upon John Dadosky’s recent writings advocating a “turn to the Other” in Lonergan studies. Using a Levinas/Lonergan dialogue on intersubjectivity as a test case, I address potential difficulties accompanying an exchange between Lonergan and philosophers who emphasize alterity. It is my contention that despite various differences regarding relationality, their projects are surprisingly complementary. Lonergan accentuates interconnectedness while Levinas emphasizes the encounter with radical otherness. In order to arrive at this conclusion, I argue for a re-assessment of the relationship between alterity and similarity by dialectically reframing them as linked but opposed principles held in creative tension. Lastly, I suggest ways in which this approach might offer a foundation for further forays into the fourth stage of meaning.
3. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Michiel Meijer, Human-Related, Not Human-Controlled: Charles Taylor on Ethics and Ontology
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This essay critically discusses Charles Taylor’s distinctive mode of argumentation regarding ethics, phenomenology, and ontology. It also examines the meaning of Taylor’s ontological claims by putting a spotlight on the underappreciated significance of Heidegger and Murdoch for Taylor’s ontology. I argue that Taylor’s hybrid position is best understood as a phenomenological attempt to connect Heideggerian ontology and Murdochean ethics. The paper is divided in five sections: (1) Taylor’s engagement with Murdoch and his tendency towards non-anthropocentrism in ethics; (2) his unusual interwoven mode of thought; (3) his debt to Heidegger; (4) his hesitant interpretations of Heidegger and Murdoch; and (5) how these hesitations affect Taylor’s ethical view in general and its underlying ontology in particular.
4. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Vladimir Dukić, Individuation of Finite Modes in Spinoza’s Ethics
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Spinoza’s rejection of Aristotelian final causation seems to create a difficulty for his account of individuation. If causation is indeed blind, how do finite modes come to assume complex, differentiated forms? And why do we find in nature a great regularity of such forms? Several recent commentators have proposed that Spinoza maintains something of the Aristotelian conception of causation where the formal essences of individuals guide the process of individuation toward certain desirable outcomes. But this sort of approach introduces other difficulties that threaten to undermine Spinoza’s naturalistic framework and his ontology of immanence. This paper outlines a mechanistic and probabilistic account of individuation whereby modes are individuated by entering into relations that increase their mutual power of enduring. Together with conatus as the principle of individuation, this mechanistic account suffices to explain the individuation of finite bodies without introducing additional kinds of causation into Spinoza’s philosophy.
5. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Steven Barbone, Not Just “An Unmitigated and Seemingly Unmotivated Disaster”: What Could Spinoza Mean by “Sentimus Experimurque, Nos Æternos Esse”?
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Much ink has been spilled over the so-called problem of the “eternity of the mind” in Spinoza’s Ethics, where he writes: “Nevertheless, we feel and experience that we are eternal.” The line is striking by what it seems to assert, namely, that we are eternal, but it is yet more striking if we are attentive to Spinoza’s word choices. If Spinoza had written instead that we know or understand (even if by experience) that we are eternal, the issue might be more easily resolved. But what can it mean to feel and to experience that we are eternal? After reviewing several commentators’ interpretations, this study suggests that we simply take Spinoza at his word. The best interpretation of this troubling passage is actually not to interpret it but to take it literally.
6. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
John J. Tilley, Francis Hutcheson and John Clarke: Self-Interest, Desire, and Divine Impassibility
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In this article I address a puzzle about one of Francis Hutcheson’s objections to psychological egoism. The puzzle concerns his premise that God receives no benefit from rewarding the virtuous. Why, in the early editions of his Inquiry Concerning Virtue (1725, 1726), does Hutcheson leave this premise undefended? And why, in the later editions (1729, 1738), does he continue to do so, knowing that in 1726 John Clarke of Hull had subjected the premise to plausible criticism, geared to the very audience (mainly Christian) for whom Hutcheson’s objection to egoism was written? This puzzle is not negligible. Some might claim that Hutcheson ruins his objection by ignoring Clarke’s criticism. To answer the puzzle we must consider not only Hutcheson’s philosophy but also some theological assumptions of Hutcheson’s time.
7. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Hasse Hämäläinen, Aristotle and the Dilemma of Kantian Autonomy
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Autonomy was an important political concept in ancient Greece. Kant made it the ground of morality: only acting motivated by autonomous reason is moral. But he admits that reason does not have a power to motivate us: desires can always override it. Thus it seems that human reason is not autonomous. The principle of autonomy, however, is an intrinsic part of Kant’s “Copernican Revolution” and his rationalism about the grounding of morality. Questioning the former would lead to fideism or to skepticism while rejecting the latter to reductionism. Neither course is less problematic for grounding morality than the principle of autonomy is. I suggest that Aristotle can help us to see how this dilemma can be avoided. Unlike Kant and many others, he does not seek to ground morality beyond our experience. The Aristotelian understanding of human beings as capable of evaluating one another’s actions with the language of purposefulness can explain which actions are moral without falling into the dilemma implied by the Kantian principle of autonomy.
book reviews
8. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Joseph A. Bracken, S.J., German Idealism’s Trinitarian Legacy. By Dale M. Schlitt
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9. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Victor Salas, The Cambridge Companion to Medieval Logic. Edited by Catarina Dutilh Novaes and Stephen Read
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10. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 3
Sam Zeno Conedera, S.J., Conserving America? Essays on Present Discontents. By Patrick J. Deneen
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