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articles
1. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Presenting Our Authors
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2. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Ellen M. Chen How Taoist Is Heidegger?
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There are many strains in Heidegger’s thought to which he often refers, but one that he never mentions, Taoism. Otto Pöggeler has noted that Heidegger’s engagement with Chinese philosophy, and in particular with the Tao Te Ching of Lao-tzu, exerted a decisive effect on the form and direction of his later thinking. With Reinhard May’s careful comparisons of passages from Heidegger’s major texts with translations of the Tao Te Ching and various Zen Buddhist texts, there is now general agreement on Heidegger’s indebtedness to Chinese philosophy. The recurrent themes of his later lectures can all be found in Taoist texts. Often these are points on which he is labeled a mystic or an irrationalist and taken to task by his Western critics. This essay examines some key facets of his thought and compares his position to that of the Tao Te Ching so as to determine the extent to which Heidegger has departed from the Western tradition to become a Taoist.
3. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Marina Berzins McCoy Reason and Dialectic in the Argument against Protagoras in the Theaetetus
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This paper examines Socrates’ refutation of Protagoras’s view of knowledge in the Theaetetus (151e–186e). I show that the argument against Protagoras is not intended to be a purely abstract one about inconsistent premises. Instead, Socrates’ success in argumentagainst Protagoras depends upon Theaetetus’s character and his beliefs about knowledge and expertise. I also explore how understanding that section of the dialogue in this way better exhibits Socrates’ description of himself as akin to a midwife. Plato affirms a notion of the “rational” as inevitably embedded in the experiences of the particular interlocutors with whom Socrates speaks. The Theaetetus recognizes the existence of a competing intellectual position that from its own standpoint is not fully “captured” by the Socratic position, while still dialectically affi rming the Socratic/philosophical standpoint.
4. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Edward F. McGushin Foucault’s Cartesian Meditations
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For a long time readers of Descartes’s Meditations have argued about whether or not they are to be taken as spiritual exercises. In this paper I show that the later work of Michel Foucault provides us with a new way of approaching this problem. To situate Foucault’sapproach and to reveal his originality, I summarize two influential discussions of the meditational character of Descartes’s Meditations. I then turn to the work of Foucault, give a brief explanation of his idiosyncratic definition of spiritual exercises, and show how his approach permits a deeper appreciation of how the Meditations, as meditations, operate. My argument, following Foucault, is that reading the Meditations as spiritual exercises allows us a fuller grasp of the text precisely because it displaces our “Cartesian” form of subjectivity.
5. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Mark S. Muldoon Ricœur’s Ethical Poetics: Genesis and Elements
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Despite his enormous bibliography of written works, Ricoeur has never devoted an entire tome to either moral philosophy or ethics per se. Three chapters of one work, Oneself as Another, do, however, encompass what he calls summarily his “little ethics.” To understand Ricoeur’s ethical project, it is important to see its genesis in his earlier anthropological studies and to follow its evolving nature into a hermeneutical poetics. Ricoeur’s ethical orientation is teleological. He makes a strong distinction between ethics and morality, with ethics being comprised of three inseparable components: the “good life,” the other, and justice. The essential hermeneutical nature of his ethics becomes fully apparent in his discussion of practical wisdom.
6. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Evelyn Wortsman Deluty Wittgenstein’s Paradox: Philosophical Investigations, Paragraph 242
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In the Philosophical Investigations §242, Wittgenstein asserts paradoxically that objectivity is not lost even though communication requires the interplay of agreement in definitions and agreement in judgments. Although Wittgenstein does not claim that objectivity is only determined by this interplay, the objective status of logic initially appears to have disappeared. Wittgenstein here foresees the criticism launched by Kripke that objectivity has been replaced by inter-subjectivity. However, he retorts that the only aspect of objectivity that has vanished is the illusion of any access to an absolute truth independent of language-use. In a transcendental rotation reminiscent of Kant, Wittgenstein maintains that when the notion of a direct trajectory between human consciousness and truth is relinquished, objectivity of any kind relies on rules that language-use generates in the play of a language-game. Wittgenstein grounds objectivity in judgment, and thereby subjects logic to the possibility of communication.
7. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Katherin Rogers God and Moral Realism
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Only God, or a very god-like being, can provide both the objectivity and the normative power necessary for a really robust moral realism. Further, I argue that the classical theist position—the view of Augustine, Anselm, and Aquinas—that morality is grounded in the nature of God, supplies a better metaphysical background for a strong moral realism than Divine Command Theory does. I respond briefly to the criticism that belief in God can have no positive role to play in solving ethical problems, and I conclude with the observation that if the argument is correct, it entails that there is an argument from evil for the existence of God.
book reviews and notices
8. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Mark Wynn Can We Be Good Without God?: Biology, Behavior, and the Need to Believe
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9. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
Katherine Morris Sartre on Violence: Curiously Ambivalent
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10. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 45 > Issue: 1
George Connell Kierkegaard’s Relations to Hegel Reconsidered
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