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1. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
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2. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Christopher Buckman, A Kantian Analytic of the Ugly
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Kant’s theory of taste, as expounded in the Critique of Judgment, deals exhaustively with judgments of beauty. Rarely does Kant mention ugliness. This omission has led to a debate among commentators about how judgments of ugliness should be explained in a Kantian framework. I argue that the judgment of ugliness originates in the disharmonious play between the faculties of imagination and understanding. Such disharmony occurs when the understanding finds that it cannot in principle form any concept suitable to a representation as it is presented by the imagination.
3. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
David Scott, Descartes’s “Considerable List”: A Small but Important Passage in His Philosophy
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Over the past forty years or so a critique has emerged of a long-standing interpretation of Descartes on the nature of thought. The view being rejected is that Descartes departs from his Aristotelian forbears by “mentalizing” the faculties of sensation and imagination when he includes them under the general category of “thought” and thus completely excludes them from the material domain. I focus on what is arguably the central piece of textual evidence cited in this revisionist case, the eighth paragraph of Descartes’s second Meditation. This passage contains an extensive list of acts that Descartes designates as “thought”: doubting, understanding, affirming, denying, willing or assenting, withholding will or assent, imaging and sensing. I trace the history of this revisionist reading of this list through six modern interpreters of Descartes, and for both textual and philosophical reasons I conclude that this passage provides no support for their interpretation.
4. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Duane Armitage, Anti-Reductionism and Self-Reference: From Plato to Gödel
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This essay examines the peritrope (literally, “turning around [of the tables]”) argument within the history of philosophy and discusses its various permutations, beginning with Plato and eventually mathematized with Gödel, each of which presents a philosophical system that either stands or collapses with this “peritropic” insight. I argue that the peritrope or self-reference argument itself presupposes a certain anti-reductionism, in terms of both anthropology and metaphysics, and is ultimately grounded in Aristotle’s anthropological insight that the human being is the “rational animal” (zoon logon echon). Thus the root of the anti-reductionist, peritropic argument belongs to the self-transcendent nature of rationality itself. After discussing Aristotle’s anthropology in terms of this rational transcendence, I trace the history of the self-reference argument from Plato to Gödel and discuss its various implications as applied to any and every form of reductionism. My hope is that engagement with this most basic and often overlooked philosophic insight can counter certain anti-reductionist trends in modernity.
5. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Paul M. Gould, Richard Brian Davis, Where the Bootstrapping Really Lies: A Neo-Aristotelian Reply to Panchuk
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Modified Theistic Activism is the view that abstract objects not essentially possessed by God fall under God’s creative activity in one way or another. Michelle Panchuk has argued that this position succumbs to the bootstrapping problem such that God is and is not logically prior to his properties—an incoherent and necessarily false state of affairs. In this essay we respond to Panchuk by arguing that our neo-Aristotelian account of substance and property possession successfully avoids the bootstrapping problem. Moreover, her own neo-Augustinian account of universals contains many conceptual deficiencies and ultimately succumbs to an epistemic iteration of the bootstrapping problem. Finally, we argue that the reasons provided for thinking only created beings need universals to ground character is unmotivated. In clarifying and defending our position, our hope is to bury once and for all the familiar claim that traditional theists cannot be realists with respect to abstract objects because of divine bootstrapping.
6. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Andy Mullins, Can Neuroscientific Studies Be of Personal Value?
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This essay reflects on the ability of neuroscientific data to be of personal value and to enrich our lives by offering insight into our capacities for self management and choice. The theory of cognitive dualism proposed by Roger Scruton seeks to preserve rationality and allow for freedom of will, but he appears reluctant to engage with the data accruing in neural studies. I contrast this approach with a Thomistic hylomorphic approach to the philosophy of mind that is founded on participation in being. It offers the potential to draw on neurobiological knowledge for insights into rationality, motivation, and eudaimonia. The role of neural development in eudaimonia is considered and the benefits of a Thomistic hylomorphism founded on participation in esse are summarized.
7. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Eric Pommier, Hans Jonas’s Biological Philosophy: Metaphysics or Phenomenology?
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Should we understand the biological philosophy of Hans Jonas as a phenomenology for unveiling the phenomenon of life or as a kind of Hegelian metaphysics that presents life as a substantial principle? To answer that question, we need to deal first with the question of our access to other living beings and then with the problem of the spiritualization of the concept of evolution. This article will use an essay called “Organism and Freedom: An Essay in Philosophical Biology.”
book reviews
8. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Margaret I. Hughes, Questions on Love and Charity: Summa Theologiae, Secunda Secundae, Questions 23–46. By Thomas Aquinas. Edited and translated by Robert Miner
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9. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
James M. Jacobs, Aquinas and Modern Science: A New Synthesis of Faith and Reason. By Gerard M. Verschuuren
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10. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 57 > Issue: 4
Brian E. Johnson, Subverting Aristotle: Religion, History and Philosophy in Early Modern Science. By Craig Martin
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