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1. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Phillip Cole Principled Toleration and Respectful Indifference in the Liberal Polity: A Conceptual Landscape
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This paper examines toleration at two levels. At the first level, liberal individualism is concerned that the individual must be as free as possible to pursue their own goals and lifestyles. At the second level, liberal political theory is concerned with the value of liberal political culture and institutions and how to maintain and protect them. I argue that we can learn a great deal about the exercise of toleration and respect at the level of the liberal polity by examining them at the level of the liberal individual. Both tolerance and intolerance at the level of the polity must be principled. Principled tolerance and intolerance have the following features. First, the judgment whether to tolerate a particular belief or practice must be based on the value of toleration itself, not pragmatic political requirements. Second, it should be an issue of setting aside moral principles and convictions rather than dislikes, prejudices or fears. Third, it should respect the distinction between the public and the private, and should only recognise an issue as one of toleration if there is a public impact at stake.
2. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Note from the Editorial Board
3. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Nenad Miscevic Facing Strangers in Need: Toleration, Refugee Crisis and Cosmopolitanism
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What is the role of toleration in the present-day crisis, marked by the inflow of refugees and increase in populism? The seriousness of the crises demands efforts of active toleration, acceptance, and integration of refugees and the like. Active toleration brings with itself a series of very demanding duties, divided into immediate ones involving immediate Samaritan aid to people at our doors and the long-term ones involving their acculturation and possibilities of decent life for them. A cosmopolitan attitude can contribute a lot. In the context of a refugee crisis, cosmopolitanism is not disappearing but showing its non-traditional, more Samaritan face turned not to distant strangers, as the classical one, but towards strangers at our doors.We have conjectured that this work of active toleration can diminish the need for the passive one: the well-integrated immigrant is no longer seen as a strange, exotic person with an incomprehensible and unacceptable attitude, but as one of us so that her attitudes become less irritating and provocative. The social-psychological approach that sees integration as involving both the preservation of central aspects of the original identity and the copy-pasting of the new one over it offers an interesting rationale for the conjecture: once integrated, the former newcomer is perceived as one of ‘us’ and her views stop being exotic, incomprehensible and a priori unacceptable. Given the amount of need for toleration, and difficulties and paradoxes connected with its passive variety, the conjecture, if true, might be a piece of good news.Finally, we have briefly touched the question of deeper causes of the crisis. Once one turns to this question, the traditional cosmopolitan issues come back to the forefront: the deep poverty and unjust distribution on the one hand, and conflicts and wars on the other. Cosmopolitans have a duty to face these issues, and this is where active global toleration leads in our times.
4. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Francesco Trupia (Im)Possible Tolerance. A Paradox from within Multicultural Societies: An Essay on the Mind-Brain Problem and Legal Proof
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This paper deals with the principle of tolerance in our contemporary society in the attempt to highlight limits and paradoxes in the various aspects of minority issues. From this point of view, the first part of the paper discusses Kymlicka’s contribution to multiculturalism with regard to national minorities and immigrant communities, while the second part confronts his Theory of Minority Rights with Antonio Gramsci’s theory of hegemony and circle of humanity. Therefore, this paper aims at shifting the discourse over tolerance-related minority issues from a top-down approach toward an analysis of how tolerance is allowed to be performed. Thus, Gramsci’s philosophy of praxis is employed to disentangle moral and cultural set of values and norms within which both principle of tolerance and performativity of toleration are established and, in parallel, to reflect on reasons why others are not allowed to be performed.
5. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Aderonke Ajiboro The Limits of Tolerance in Perfectionism
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The responsibility for the wellbeing of people in a community is a germane question in socio-political discourse. I think this is because the aggregation of people in a community does not amount to the aggregation of the same socio-political interest for each and everyone in the community. The mode of organization that a society follows therefore has an impact on how citizens of a particular State attain their wellbeing or the good life. This paper engages the thought that tolerance is an inevitable part of the society, even in a perfectionist state.
6. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Plamen Makariev The Limits of Tolerance from the Perspective of Their Public Legitimization
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The limits of tolerance are discussed in this article with regard to the status of religious, ethnic, and national minorities in liberal-democratic societies. The question that the author is trying to answer is this: how can minority policies be designed in such a way that they provide the due conditions for the reproduction of minority identities over time which, at the same time, do not compromise national integrity. The line of demarcation between these two kinds of policy would also be the limit of tolerance, concerning the role of these identities in society. In the first part of the article a critical analysis is made of the policy of cultural neutrality of the state, based on the differentiation between the approaches to minority issues in the public and in the private life of the citizens. In the second part an alternative possible solution is presented―to draw the limits of tolerance by means of the legitimization of minority policies via public communication which is protected from manipulations by means of the methodology of public deliberation.
7. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Mohammad Hussein Ganji Loving Tolerance: A Look at Tolerance from the Viewpoint of Rumi
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The deepening and development of epistemological issues on the one hand, and the unpleasant historical experience on the other hand, made modern humanity after the Renaissance gradually became tolerant and recognized "the Other." The epistemological basis for tolerance is the obscurity and complexity of truth and difference in the understanding of human beings. Its moral basis is not to see oneself as above others and to endure the intricacies of practicing morality. Tolerance is rational for two reasons: one is the epistemological basis that hinders the dogma of possessing absolute truth, self-knowledge, and repudiating others; the other is the advantages of tolerance for collective living. This article seeks to show that Rumi, while paying attention to the moral and epistemological principles of tolerance, goes beyond the rational tolerance of calculating profits, losses, and trading. According to his mystical view, his tolerance is a “loving tolerance,” a tolerance which is based solely on love and compassion towards human beings, rather than being based on calculations of profit and loss, with no expectation for reward.
8. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Petar Radoev Dimkov Ecstatic Aura as Mystical Experience in Dostoevsky’s Epilepsy
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Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky is one of the best Russian novelists. It is also known that he had been suffering from epilepsy―one can find many descriptions of this particular condition in Dostoevsky’s novels. These writings are most probably based on his personal experience. There are numerous neurological hypotheses about the type of epilepsy with which Dostoevsky suffered, the most notorious feature of his type of epilepsy being the so-called “ecstatic aura.” In fact, the type of epilepsy Dostoevsky experienced is often termed “Dostoevsky’s epilepsy with ecstatic aura.” In the current article, I offer a review of the literature on Dostoevsky’s epilepsy. Subsequently, the notorious feature “ecstatic aura” is compared with mystical experience, and a conclusion is reached: the two states are in fact identical in the sense that mystical experience can occur during ecstatic aura. A neuroscientific explanation of the experience is presented as well. Finally, a philosophical analysis is performed.
9. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Georgi Dzupanov, Drozdstoy Stoyanov Epilepsy and Psychosis: A Commentary on “Ecstatic Aura as Mystical Experience in Dostoevsky’s Epilepsy”
10. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Alieva Cholpon Review of the Research Book of Bogdana Todorova on the Topic of “The Position of ‘Unity’ in the Political Thought of Imam Khomeini"
11. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Note from the Editorial Board
12. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Dan Goodley Challenging Transhumanism: Clutching at Straws and Assistive Technologies
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This paper cautiously ponders the offerings of transhumanism. We begin the paper by introducing the transhumanist movement and related transdisciplinary thinking before giving space to the emergence of critical disability studies. We argue that the latter field has the potential to ground a critical and reflexive analysis of transhumanism– not least through a consideration of the contributions of posthuman and green disability studies. Drawing on these two perspectives, two specific areas of transhuman contemplation are offered. First, we consider (in the section titled, ‘The Ban on Straws: Disability prosthetics and the complication of eco-politics’) the relationship between disability advocacy politics and the potential ableism present in popular eco-political discourse. Second, we explore mainstreaming assistive technologies and e-waste collateral. These analytical thematics highlight the complexities of a critical transhuman disability studies, not least, in relation to the clash of disability and green politics. We conclude the paper with some considerations for future theory and research that trouble an uncritical acceptance of transhumanism in the area of critical disability studies.
13. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Sorin Hostiuc Procreative Autonomy Versus Beneficence in Assisted Reproductive Technologies
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Since its beginning, healthcare has focused its attention on helping patients become healthier and live longer. One of the areas in which medical technology has made impressive strides is assisted reproductive technologies. Some bioethical issues are common to most or all of these newer reproductive technologies. The uncertainty of long-term risks posed by reproductive technologies generate potential challenges to the values of beneficence and non-maleficence and strain the already divisive dichotomy between procreative autonomy and procreative beneficence. Procreative autonomy and procreative beneficence are both important values that physicians and prospective parents ought to evaluate when considering the use of assisted reproductive technologies. However, the moral prescriptives associated with each value may diverge and conflict with one another; when this occurs, minute arguments may shift the balance between them. For physicians, prioritizing the value of procreative autonomy or procreative beneficence mainly influences the way in which they choose to present information–that is, whether they are directive or non-directive when consulted about family-planning options. Assisted reproductive technologies have dramatically increased the range of choices available to prospective parents, and this breadth of choice may lead to potential ethical conflicts between the competing values of procreative autonomy and procreative beneficence. In the following article, we will address this friction, focusing our attention on normative considerations related to medical risk management and the telos of the prospective child.
14. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Antonio Maturo, Margaret Shea The Quantified Self or the Marketized Self?: How Data and the Drive to Optimize Lead to Neoliberal Performance Culture
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We show how interest in “human enhancement” and "optimization” is rooted in a broader social phenomenon – the medicalization of life – and argue that the push to enhance and optimize human beings has a distinctively neoliberal character. Indeed, human enhancement and optimization practices reflect a growing tendency to apply market concepts and logic to individuals, who increasingly conceive of themselves as performative subjects. The Quantified Self is, we suggest, the Marketized Self. Moreover, the Quantified Self is not merely a symptom of the marketization of individuals but serves also to perpetuate that marketization: the Quantified Self threatens to become that concept which defines who the individual “really” is. We argue that this metaphysically weighty idea affects how we think about what is good for human beings.
15. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Vassil Vidinsky (Post)phenomenological Approach to Homo Sapiens Technicus
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In this paper I use a (post)phenomenological approach to clarify the objective cultural expansion of our technology. Thus, I establish a conceptual analogy between two different philosophical analyses of human–machine relations – one historical and one phenomenological. I develop the analogy between them and their corresponding concepts in several steps. (1) First, I present the Homo sapiens technicus tendency and then the phenomenological differentiation between body schema and body image. All of these elucidate our involvement with machines. (2) Then, I conceptualize the term ‘context’, coupling its structural stability with the idea of distextaulity in order to achieve a better empirical understanding of our technological contradictions. (3) I continue to develop and enrich the analogy by illuminating the functional similarities – fluid boundary, automation, complexity – between contextual structures on the one hand and body schemata on the other. (4) Finally, I explore a deeper causal and narrative connection between those strands, shedding light on an interesting twofold circularity: a circular causation and a double narrative within Homo sapiens technicus.
16. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
George Gherjikov Transhumanism and the Western Monotheistic Traditions
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The article offers an overview of the (dis)continuities between the major Abrahamic religions (especially Christianity) and transhumanism, as well as some possibilities envisioned by scholars for their ongoing dialogue. Important points that come up along the way include: ecology vs. space exploration; the neglect of injustices suffered by past generations; the importance of bodily and mental imperfections for the development of culture; and our all-too human expectations for what posthumans may desire.Also presented is a review of various possible criticisms against wildly ambitious projects, such as Frank Tipler’s attempt to fuse transhumanism with Christian eschatology. It is argued that process theology and James Gardner’s “Biocosm hypothesis” offer a more intriguing view: a salvation which is not predestined but merely possible, and whose details are being negotiated through specific historic events and even through our day-to-day decisions and deliberations. Such a view overcomes Nietzsche’s notion of eternal recurrence by stressing the importance of rethinking, redaction, and creating variations of what already exists.
17. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Milenko Bodin Multiculturalism and (Neo)liberalism
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Questions related to the politics and practice of multiculturalism remain hotly debated, even though it is unclear what generally is meant by the term “multiculturalism” and how multiculturalism fits into the politics of liberalism. To many proponents of identity politics movements, ‘normative multiculturalism’ represents an unquestioned good, and collective identities are seen as a primary subject of democratic deliberation and national policy. Liberal activists, however, may be justifiably concerned that this interpretation of multiculturalism impinges on the foundations of liberalism itself, including the core value of perfect equality between autonomous rights-bearing subjects.We respond to these concerns by interrogating the philosophical nature of liberalism and multiculturalism, respectively, and fleshing out the complex relationship that exists between these concepts. Using discourse analysis we find that the discourse of normative multiculturalism corresponds to the broader concept of liberalism – neoliberalism. We argue that the discourse of neoliberalism integrates the model and empirical sense of the classical concept of liberalism and that the goal – normative neutrality towards cultural and other identities – is more efficiently achieved..
18. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Ruslan Klymenko Artificial Evolution in Transhumanism
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Transhumanism is a contemporary philosophy based on the belief that human nature is evolving over time not only because of Darwin's natural evolution, but also because of the impact of social movements and technical innovations. The philosophy has been shaped by many historical forerunners, for example, Nietzsche's famous idea that the human being is a mere rope tied between animal and posthuman (i.e. Übermensch), or Fedorov's reflections on the possibility of immortality.In this article, the author will show that – from a current technological perspective – in the not-so-distant future humans will be able to choose their own personal way to evolve, “upgrading” themselves with electronic or organic devices that will modify, improve, or simply introduce new forms of sensation and experience to their being . Included in the analysis of this potential are the historical preconditions of such revolutionary social and technological change.
19. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1
David Weissman Future Philosophy
20. Balkan Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1
Marin Aiftincă Global Culture and Cultural Identity: An Axiological Perspective
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In past decades, the globalizing phenomenon is joining with the new concept of .Global culture,. which designates a homogeneous cultural reality and modifies the axiological scale by placing utilitarian values on the highest level. In this paper, we analyse relations between culture and global culture, traditions, cultural identity and globalizing, global culture. Also, we reject the idea of .global culture . and conclude that in globalization conditions, any tradition and, essentially, any culture can exist and keep its vigour and identity as long as it is continually recreated in accordance with the claims of modernity.This recreation is the basis of any real dialogue. This dialogue enables the affirmation of cultural identity, even through its diversity, the development of the universal culture and, undoubtedly, theimprovement of the human condition.