Results for 'Kane Simpson'

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Kane Simpson
Deakin University
  1.  48
    A Branching Narrative.Kane Simpson - 2018 - Colloquy (35/36):196-205.
    A short story exploring cloning and the Teletransporter Thought Experiment. Rather than abstract consideration, the focus is on the first-personal experience.
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  2. The Kane-Widerker Objection to Frankfurt Examples.James Cain - 2014 - Philosophia 42 (4):949-957.
    I will argue that the Kane-Widerker objection to Frankfurt examples is much weaker than is generally recognized. The Kane-Widerker objection holds that proponents of Frankfurt examples beg the question against incompatibilist accounts of free and responsible action by constructing examples that tacitly assume a compatibilist account of moral responsibility; that is, they assume that one can have non-derivative responsibility for choices that were not undetermined prior to their occurrence. The notion of an event, E, being ‘undetermined prior to (...)
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  3. Simpson's Paradox and Causality.Prasanta S. Bandyopadhyay, Mark Greenwood, Don Dcruz & Venkata Raghavan - 2015 - American Philosophical Quarterly 52 (1):13-25.
    There are three questions associated with Simpson’s Paradox (SP): (i) Why is SP paradoxical? (ii) What conditions generate SP?, and (iii) What should be done about SP? By developing a logic-based account of SP, it is argued that (i) and (ii) must be divorced from (iii). This account shows that (i) and (ii) have nothing to do with causality, which plays a role only in addressing (iii). A counterexample is also presented against the causal account. Finally, the causal and (...)
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  4. No-Platforming, Liberalism, and Students (an Interview with Robert Simpson).Alex Davies & Robert Mark Simpson - 2018
    This is the English (and extended version) of an interview originally published in Estonian in October 2018. In the interview, Simpson summarizes a particular way of defending the practice of no-platforming. The varying appeal of different defences of the practice in different socio-historical contexts (i.e. the UK/US versus a post-Soviet country such as Estonia) is discussed also.
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  5. Kane is Not Able: A Reply to Vicens’ “Self-Forming Actions and Confl Icts of Intention”.Gregg D. Caruso - 2015 - Southwest Philosophy Review 31 (2):21-26.
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  6. Indoctrination Anxiety and the Etiology of Belief.Joshua DiPaolo & Robert Mark Simpson - 2016 - Synthese 193 (10):3079-3098.
    People sometimes try to call others’ beliefs into question by pointing out the contingent causal origins of those beliefs. The significance of such ‘Etiological Challenges’ is a topic that has started attracting attention in epistemology. Current work on this topic aims to show that Etiological Challenges are, at most, only indirectly epistemically significant, insofar as they bring other generic epistemic considerations to the agent’s attention. Against this approach, we argue that Etiological Challenges are epistemically significant in a more direct and (...)
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  7. Indirect Epistemic Reasons and Religious Belief.Kirk Lougheed & Robert Mark Simpson - 2017 - Religious Studies 53 (2):151-169.
    If believing P will result in epistemically good outcomes, does this generate an epistemic reason to believe P, or just a pragmatic reason? Conceiving of such reasons as epistemic reasons seems to lead to absurdity, e.g. by allowing that someone can rationally hold beliefs that conflict with her assessment of her evidence’s probative force. We explain how this and other intuitively unwelcome results can be avoided. We also suggest a positive case for conceiving of such reasons as epistemic reasons, namely, (...)
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  8. Permissivism and the Arbitrariness Objection.Robert Mark Simpson - 2017 - Episteme 14 (4):519-538.
    Permissivism says that for some propositions and bodies of evidence, there is more than one rationally permissible doxastic attitude that can be taken towards that proposition given the evidence. Some critics of this view argue that it condones, as rationally acceptable, sets of attitudes that manifest an untenable kind of arbitrariness. I begin by providing a new and more detailed explication of what this alleged arbitrariness consists in. I then explain why Miriam Schoenfield’s prima facie promising attempt to answer the (...)
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  9. No Platforming.Robert Mark Simpson & Amia Srinivasan - 2018 - In Jennifer Lackey (ed.), Academic Freedom. Oxford, UK: pp. 186-209.
    This paper explains how the practice of ‘no platforming’ can be reconciled with a liberal politics. While opponents say that no platforming flouts ideals of open public discourse, and defenders see it as a justifiable harm-prevention measure, both sides mistakenly treat the debate like a run-of-the-mill free speech conflict, rather than an issue of academic freedom specifically. Content-based restrictions on speech in universities are ubiquitous. And this is no affront to a liberal conception of academic freedom, whose purpose isn’t just (...)
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  10.  81
    Accountability and Community on the Internet: A Plea for Restorative Justice.Laura Wildemann Kane - 2020 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 37 (4):594-611.
    In this article, I analyze norm enforcement on social media, specifically cases where an agent has committed a moral transgression online and is brought to account by an Internet mob with incongruously injurious results in their offline life. I argue that users problematically imagine that they are members of a particular kind of moral community where shaming behaviors are not only acceptable, but morally required to ‘take down’ those who appear to violate community norms. I then demonstrate the costs that (...)
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  11. Just War and Robots’ Killings.Thomas W. Simpson & Vincent C. Müller - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (263):302-22.
    May lethal autonomous weapons systems—‘killer robots ’—be used in war? The majority of writers argue against their use, and those who have argued in favour have done so on a consequentialist basis. We defend the moral permissibility of killer robots, but on the basis of the non-aggregative structure of right assumed by Just War theory. This is necessary because the most important argument against killer robots, the responsibility trilemma proposed by Rob Sparrow, makes the same assumptions. We show that the (...)
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  12. The Failure of Soul-Making Theodicy.G. Stanley Kane - 1975 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 6 (1):1 - 22.
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  13. Epistemic Peerhood and the Epistemology of Disagreement.Robert Mark Simpson - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (2):561-577.
    In disagreements about trivial matters, it often seems appropriate for disputing parties to adopt a ‘middle ground’ view about the disputed matter. But in disputes about more substantial controversies (e.g. in ethics, religion, or politics) this sort of doxastic conduct can seem viciously acquiescent. How should we distinguish between the two kinds of cases, and thereby account for our divergent intuitions about how we ought to respond to them? One possibility is to say that ceding ground in a trivial dispute (...)
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  14. The Relation Between Academic Freedom and Free Speech.Robert Mark Simpson - 2020 - Ethics 130 (3):287-319.
    The standard view of academic freedom and free speech is that they play complementary roles in universities. Academic freedom protects academic discourse, while other public discourse in universities is protected by free speech. Here I challenge this view, broadly, on the grounds that free speech in universities sometimes undermines academic practices. One defense of the standard view, in the face of this worry, says that campus free speech actually furthers the university’s academic aims. Another says that universities have a secondary (...)
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  15. Dignity, Harm, and Hate Speech.Robert Mark Simpson - 2013 - Law and Philosophy 32 (6):701-728.
    This paper examines two recent contributions to the hate speech literature – by Steven Heyman and Jeremy Waldron – which seek a justification for the legal restriction of hate speech in an account of the way that hate speech infringes against people’s dignity. These analyses look beyond the first-order hurts and disadvantages suffered by the immediate targets of hate speech, and consider the prospect of hate speech sustaining complex social structures whose wide-scale operations lower the social status of members of (...)
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  16. Life in Overabundance: Agar on Life-Extension and the Fear of Death.Aveek Bhattacharya & Robert Mark Simpson - 2014 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (2):223-236.
    In Humanity’s End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement, Nicholas Agar presents a novel argument against the prospect of radical life-extension. Agar’s argument hinges on the claim that extended lifespans will result in people’s lives being dominated by the fear of death. Here we examine this claim and the surrounding issues in Agar’s discussion. We argue, firstly, that Agar’s view rests on empirically dubious assumptions about human rationality and attitudes to risk, and secondly, that even if those assumptions are granted, (...)
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  17. Lying, Liars and Language.David Simpson - 1992 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (3):623-639.
    This paper considers the phenomenon of lying and the implications it has for those subjects who are capable of lying. It is argued that lying is not just intentional untruthfulness, but is intentional untruthfulness plus an insincere invocation of trust. Understood in this way, lying demands of liars a sophistication in relation to themselves, to language, and to those to whom they lie which exceeds the demands on mere truth-tellers.
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  18. Promoting Coherent Minimum Reporting Guidelines for Biological and Biomedical Investigations: The MIBBI Project.Chris F. Taylor, Dawn Field, Susanna-Assunta Sansone, Jan Aerts, Rolf Apweiler, Michael Ashburner, Catherine A. Ball, Pierre-Alain Binz, Molly Bogue, Tim Booth, Alvis Brazma, Ryan R. Brinkman, Adam Michael Clark, Eric W. Deutsch, Oliver Fiehn, Jennifer Fostel, Peter Ghazal, Frank Gibson, Tanya Gray, Graeme Grimes, John M. Hancock, Nigel W. Hardy, Henning Hermjakob, Randall K. Julian, Matthew Kane, Carsten Kettner, Christopher Kinsinger, Eugene Kolker, Martin Kuiper, Nicolas Le Novere, Jim Leebens-Mack, Suzanna E. Lewis, Phillip Lord, Ann-Marie Mallon, Nishanth Marthandan, Hiroshi Masuya, Ruth McNally, Alexander Mehrle, Norman Morrison, Sandra Orchard, John Quackenbush, James M. Reecy, Donald G. Robertson, Philippe Rocca-Serra, Henry Rodriguez, Heiko Rosenfelder, Javier Santoyo-Lopez, Richard H. Scheuermann, Daniel Schober, Barry Smith & Jason Snape - 2008 - Nature Biotechnology 26 (8):889-896.
    Throughout the biological and biomedical sciences there is a growing need for, prescriptive ‘minimum information’ (MI) checklists specifying the key information to include when reporting experimental results are beginning to find favor with experimentalists, analysts, publishers and funders alike. Such checklists aim to ensure that methods, data, analyses and results are described to a level sufficient to support the unambiguous interpretation, sophisticated search, reanalysis and experimental corroboration and reuse of data sets, facilitating the extraction of maximum value from data sets (...)
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  19.  70
    Language and Legitimation.Robert Mark Simpson - 2021 - In Justin Khoo & Rachel Katharine Sterken (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Social and Political Philosophy of Language. New York, NY, USA: Routledge.
    The verb to legitimate is often used in political discourse in a way that is prima facie perplexing. To wit, it is often said that an actor legitimates a practice which is officially prohibited in the relevant context – for example, that a worker telling sexist jokes legitimates sex discrimination in the workplace. In order to clarify the meaning of statements like this, and show how they can sometimes be true and informative, we need an explanation of how something that (...)
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  20. Moral Antitheodicy: Prospects and Problems.Robert Mark Simpson - 2009 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 65 (3):153-169.
    Proponents of the view which I call ‘moral antitheodicy’ call for the theistic discourse of theodicy to be abandoned, because, they claim, all theodicies involve some form of moral impropriety. Three arguments in support of this view are examined: the argument from insensitivity, the argument from detachment, and the argument from harmful consequences. After discussing the merits of each argument individually, I attempt to show that they all must presuppose what they are intended to establish, namely, that the set of (...)
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  21. On Hegel, Women, and the Foundation of Ethical Life: Why Gender Doesn’T Belong in the Family.Laura Wildemann Kane - 2015 - Clio: A Journal of Literature, History, and the Philosophy of History 44 (1):1-17.
    Feminist philosophers are right to criticize Hegel’s prejudices against women. In many of his works, Hegel reduces women to their physiology as means of explaining why they occupy a subordinate role in nature and in society. Such treatment seems arbitrary at best, for the gendering of roles disrupts Hegel’s dialectical approach to spirit without any meaningful gain. Despite this defect in Hegel’s work, what is positive in Hegelian social and political philosophy remains intact. In this paper I argue that the (...)
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  22. Climate Change, Cooperation, and Moral Bioenhancement.Toby Handfield, Pei-hua Huang & Robert Mark Simpson - 2016 - Journal of Medical Ethics 42 (2):742-747.
    The human faculty of moral judgment is not well suited to address problems, like climate change, that are global in scope and remote in time. Advocates of ‘moral bioenhancement’ have proposed that we should investigate the use of medical technologies to make human beings more trusting and altruistic, and hence more willing to cooperate in efforts to mitigate the impacts of climate change. We survey recent accounts of the proximate and ultimate causes of human cooperation in order to assess the (...)
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  23. On an Alleged Case of Propaganda: Reply to McKinnon.Sophie R. Allen, Elizabeth Finneron-Burns, Mary Leng, Holly Lawford-Smith, Jane Clare Jones, Rebecca Reilly-Cooper & R. J. Simpson - manuscript
    In her recent paper ‘The Epistemology of Propaganda’ Rachel McKinnon discusses what she refers to as ‘TERF propaganda’. We take issue with three points in her paper. The first is her rejection of the claim that ‘TERF’ is a misogynistic slur. The second is the examples she presents as commitments of so-called ‘TERFs’, in order to establish that radical (and gender critical) feminists rely on a flawed ideology. The third is her claim that standpoint epistemology can be used to establish (...)
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  24.  48
    What is a Family? Considerations on Purpose, Biology, and Sociality.Laura Wildemann Kane - 2019 - Public Affairs Quarterly 1 (33).
    There are many different interpretations of what the family should be – its desired member composition, its primary purpose, and its cultural significance – and many different examples of what families actually look like across the globe. I examine the most paradigmatic conceptions of the family that are based upon the supposed primary purpose that the family serves for its members and for the state. I then suggest that we ought to reconceptualize how we understand and define the family in (...)
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  25. Some Moral Critique of Theodicy is Misplaced, But Not All.Robert Simpson - 2009 - Religious Studies 45 (3):339-346.
    Several recent critiques of theodicy have incorporated some form of moral objection to the theodical enterprise, in which the critic argues that one ought not to engage in the practice of theodicy. In defending theodical practice against the moral critique, Atle O. Søvik argues that the moral critique (1) begs the question against theodicy, and (2) misapprehends the implications of the claim that it is inappropriate to espouse a theodicy in certain situations. In this paper I suggest some sympathetic emendations (...)
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  26. Experimental Philosophy, Robert Kane, and the Concept of Free Will.J. Neil Otte - 2015 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 3 (1):281-296.
    Trends in experimental philosophy have provided new and compelling results that are cause for re-evaluations in contemporary discussions of free will. In this paper, I argue for one such re-evaluation by criticizing Robert Kane’s well-known views on free will. I argue that Kane’s claims about pre-theoretical intuitions are not supported by empirical findings on two accounts. First, it is unclear that either incompatibilism or compatibalism is more intuitive to nonphilosophers, as different ways of asking about free will and (...)
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  27. Un-Ringing the Bell: McGowan on Oppressive Speech and The Asymmetric Pliability of Conversations.Robert Mark Simpson - 2013 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (3):555-575.
    In recent work Mary Kate McGowan presents an account of oppressive speech inspired by David Lewis's analysis of conversational kinematics. Speech can effect identity-based oppression, she argues, by altering 'the conversational score', which is to say, roughly, that it can introduce presuppositions and expectations into a conversation, and thus determine what sort of subsequent conversational 'moves' are apt, correct, felicitous, etc., in a manner that oppresses members of a certain group (e.g. because the suppositions and expectations derogate or demean members (...)
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  28. Nanotechnologically Enhanced Combat Systems: The Downside of Invulnerability.Robert Mark Simpson & Robert Sparrow - 2014 - In Bert Gordijn & Anthony Mark Cutter (eds.), In Pursuit of Nanoethics. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. pp. 89-103.
    In this paper we examine the ethical implications of emerging Nanotechnologically Enhanced Combat Systems (or 'NECS'). Through a combination of materials innovation and biotechnology, NECS are aimed at making combatants much less vulnerable to munitions that pose a lethal threat to soldiers protected by conventional armor. We argue that increasing technological disparities between forces armed with NECS and those without will exacerbate the ethical problems of asymmetric warfare. This will place pressure on the just war principles of jus in bello, (...)
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  29. ‘Implied…or Implode?’: The Simpsons' Carnivalesque Treehouse of Horror Specials.Steve Jones - 2010 - Animation 18.
    Since 1990, The Simpsons’ annual “Treehouse of Horror” episodes have constituted a production sub-context within the series, having their own conventions and historical trajectory. These specials incorporate horror plots and devices, as well as general references to science fiction, into the series’ base in situation comedy. The Halloween specials disrupt the series usual family-oriented sitcom structure, dissolving the ideological balances that stabilise that society. By depicting the Family and community in extreme circumstances, in seeing the horror of ‘how things could (...)
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  30. Interpretation and Skill: On Passing Theory.David Simpson - 2003 - In G. Preyer, G. Peter & M. Ulkan (eds.), Concepts of Meaning: Framing an Integrated theory of Linguistic Behavior. Kluwer Academic Publishers.
    I argue that Donald Davidson's rejection of the notion of language, as commonly understood in philosophy and linguistics, is justified. However, I argue that his position needs to be supplemented by an account of the development and nurture of pre-linguistic communicative skills. Davidson argues (in 'A Nice Derangement of Epitaphs' and elsewhere) that knowledge of a language (conceived of as a set of rules or conventions) is neither sufficient nor necessary for 'linguistic' communication. The strongest argument against the initial formulation (...)
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  31. Communicative Skills in the Constitution of Illocutionary Acts.David Simpson - 1992 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 70 (1):82 – 92.
    Austin's distinction between locutionary and illocutionary acts has offered a fruitful way of focussing the relation between language and communication. In particular, by adopting the distinction we attend to linguistic and communicative subjects as actors, not just processors or conduits of information. Yet in many attempts to explicate the constitution of illocutionary acts the subject as actor is subsumed within the role of linguistic rules or conventions. I propose an account of illocutionary acts in which rules or conventions are secondary (...)
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  32.  2
    Truths About Simpson's Paradox - Saving the Paradox From Falsity.Don Dcruz, Prasanta S. Bandyopadhyay, Venkata Raghavan & Gordon Brittain Jr - 2015 - In S. N. Banerjee M. And Krishna (ed.), LNCS 8923. pp. 58-75.
    There are three questions associated with Simpson’s paradox (SP): (i) Why is SP paradoxical? (ii) What conditions generate SP? and (iii) How to proceed when confronted with SP? An adequate analysis of the paradox starts by distinguishing these three questions. Then, by developing a formal account of SP, and substantiating it with a counterexample to causal accounts, we argue that there are no causal factors at play in answering questions (i) and (ii). Causality enters only in connection with action.
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  33. Political Correctness Gone Viral.Waleed Aly & Robert Mark Simpson - 2019 - In Carl Fox & Joe Saunders (eds.), Media Ethics, Free Speech, and the Requirements of Democracy. London: pp. 125-143.
    Communicative practices in online and social media sometimes seem to amplify political conflict, and result in significant harms to people who become the targets of collective outrage. Many complaints that have been made about political correctness in the past, we argue, amount to little more than a veiled expression of resentment over the increasing influence enjoyed by progressive activists. But some complaints about political correctness take on a different complexion, in light of the technologically-driven changes to our communicative practices and (...)
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  34. Killer Robots: Regulate, Don’T Ban.Vincent C. Müller & Thomas W. Simpson - 2014 - In University of Oxford, Blavatnik School of Government Policy Memo. Blavatnik School of Government. pp. 1-4.
    Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems are here. Technological development will see them become widespread in the near future. This is in a matter of years rather than decades. When the UN Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons meets on 10-14th November 2014, well-considered guidance for a decision on the general policy direction for LAWS is clearly needed. While there is widespread opposition to LAWS—or ‘killer robots’, as they are popularly called—and a growing campaign advocates banning them outright, we argue the opposite. LAWS (...)
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  35. Réguler les robots-tueurs, plutôt que les interdire.Vincent C. Müller & Thomas W. Simpson - 2015 - Multitudes 58 (1):77.
    This is the short version, in French translation by Anne Querrien, of the originally jointly authored paper: Müller, Vincent C., ‘Autonomous killer robots are probably good news’, in Ezio Di Nucci and Filippo Santoni de Sio, Drones and responsibility: Legal, philosophical and socio-technical perspectives on the use of remotely controlled weapons. - - - L’article qui suit présente un nouveau système d’armes fondé sur des robots qui risque d’être prochainement utilisé. À la différence des drones qui sont manoeuvrés à distance (...)
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  36. Tolerating Hate in the Name of Democracy.Amanda Greene & Robert Mark Simpson - 2017 - Modern Law Review 80 (4):746-65.
    This article offers a comprehensive and critical analysis of Eric Heinze’s book Hate Speech and Democratic Citizenship (Oxford University Press, 2016). Heinze’s project is to formulate and defend a more theoretically complex version of the idea (also defended by people like Ronald Dworkin and James Weinstein) that general legal prohibitions on hate speech in public discourse compromises the state’s democratic legitimacy. We offer a detailed synopsis of Heinze’s view, highlighting some of its distinctive qualities and strengths. We then develop a (...)
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  37.  85
    Epistemic Permissivism and Reasonable Pluralism.Richard Rowland & Robert Mark Simpson - 2021 - In Michael Hannon & Jeroen De Ridder (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Political Epistemology. New York, NY, USA:
    There is an intuitive difference in how we think about pluralism and attitudinal diversity in epistemological contexts versus political contexts. In an epistemological context, it seems problematically arbitrary to hold a particular belief on some issue, while also thinking it perfectly reasonable to hold a totally different belief on the same issue given the same evidence. By contrast, though, it doesn’t seem problematically arbitrary to have a particular set of political commitments, while at the same time thinking it perfectly reasonable (...)
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  38. Search Engines, Free Speech Coverage, and the Limits of Analogical Reasoning.Heather Whitney & Robert Mark Simpson - 2019 - In Susan Brison & Katharine Gelber (eds.), Free Speech in the Digital Age. pp. 33-41.
    This paper investigates whether search engines and other new modes of online communication should be covered by free speech principles. It criticizes the analogical reason-ing that contemporary American courts and scholars have used to liken search engines to newspapers, and to extend free speech coverage to them based on that likeness. There are dissimilarities between search engines and newspapers that undermine the key analogy, and also rival analogies that can be drawn which don’t recommend free speech protection for search engines. (...)
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  39. Copernican Reasoning About Intelligent Extraterrestrials: A Reply to Simpson.Samuel Ruhmkorff & Tingao Jiang - 2019 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 50 (4):561-571.
    Copernican reasoning involves considering ourselves, in the absence of other information, to be randomly selected members of a reference class. Consider the reference class intelligent observers. If there are extraterrestrial intelligences (ETIs), taking ourselves to be randomly selected intelligent observers leads to the conclusion that it is likely the Earth has a larger population size than the typical planet inhabited by intelligent life, for the same reason that a randomly selected human is likely to come from a more populous country. (...)
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  40. Commentaries on David Hodgson's "a Plain Person's Free Will".Graham Cairns-Smith, Thomas W. Clark, Ravi Gomatam, Robert H. Kane, Nicholas Maxwell, J. J. C. Smart, Sean A. Spence & Henry P. Stapp - 2005 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 12 (1):20-75.
    REMARKS ON EVOLUTION AND TIME-SCALES, Graham Cairns-Smith; HODGSON'S BLACK BOX, Thomas Clark; DO HODGSON'S PROPOSITIONS UNIQUELY CHARACTERIZE FREE WILL?, Ravi Gomatam; WHAT SHOULD WE RETAIN FROM A PLAIN PERSON'S CONCEPT OF FREE WILL?, Gilberto Gomes; ISOLATING DISPARATE CHALLENGES TO HODGSON'S ACCOUNT OF FREE WILL, Liberty Jaswal; FREE AGENCY AND LAWS OF NATURE, Robert Kane; SCIENCE VERSUS REALIZATION OF VALUE, NOT DETERMINISM VERSUS CHOICE, Nicholas Maxwell; COMMENTS ON HODGSON, J.J.C. Smart; THE VIEW FROM WITHIN, Sean Spence; COMMENTARY ON HODGSON, Henry (...)
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  41. Administrative Lies and Philosopher-Kings.David Simpson - 1996 - Philosophical Inquiry 18 (3-4):45-65.
    The question of whether lies by those who govern are acceptable receives a clear focus and an ideal case in the Republic. Against C. D. C. Reeve, and T. C. Brickhouse and N. D Smith, I argue that the Republic’s apparent recommendation of administrative lies is incoherent. While lies may be a necessary part of the City’s administration, the process and practice of lying undermines that nature which is necessary for any suitable ruler – rendering the ideal impossible. I argue (...)
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  42. Avoiding the Afterlife in Theodicy: Victims of Suffering and the Argument From Usefulness.Robert Simpson - 2008 - Forum Philosophicum: International Journal for Philosophy 13 (2):213-227.
    Contemporary proponents of theodicy generally believe that a theodical reply to the evidential argument from evil must involve some appeal to the afterlife. In Richard Swinburne's writings on theodicy, however, we find two arguments that may be offered in opposition to this prevailing view. In this paper, these two arguments - the argument from usefulness and the argument from assumed consent - are explained and evaluated. It is suggested that both of these arguments are rendered ineffective by their failure to (...)
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  43. Dehumanization: Its Operations and its Origins.Robert Mark Simpson - 2016 - Journal of Law and Biosciences 3 (1):178-184.
    Gail Murrow and Richard Murrow offer a novel account of dehumanization, by synthesizing data which suggest that where subject S has a dehumanized view of group G, S‘s neural mechanisms of empathy show a dampened response to the suffering of members of G, and S‘s judgments about the humanity of members of G are largely non-conscious. Here I examine Murrow and Murrow‘s suggestions about how identity-based hate speech bears responsibility for dehumanization in the first place. I identify a distinction between (...)
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  44. Defining 'Speech': Subtraction, Addition, and Division.Robert Mark Simpson - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 29 (2):457-494.
    In free speech theory ‘speech’ has to be defined as a special term of art. I argue that much free speech discourse comes with a tacit commitment to a ‘Subtractive Approach’ to defining speech. As an initial default, all communicative acts are assumed to qualify as speech, before exceptions are made to ‘subtract’ those acts that don’t warrant the special legal protections owed to ‘speech’. I examine how different versions of the Subtractive Approach operate, and criticise them in terms of (...)
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  45. Intellectual Agency and Responsibility for Belief in Free Speech Theory.Robert Mark Simpson - 2013 - Legal Theory 19 (3):307-330.
    The idea that human beings are intellectually self-governing plays two roles in free-speech theory. First, this idea is frequently called upon as part of the justification for free speech. Second, it plays a role in guiding the translation of free-speech principles into legal policy by underwriting the ascriptive framework through which responsibility for certain kinds of speech harms can be ascribed. After mapping out these relations, I ask what becomes of them once we acknowledge certain very general and profound limitations (...)
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  46. Interpretation and Skill: On the Passing Theory.David Simpson - 1998 - ProtoSociology 11:93-109.
    In this paper I argue, that Donald Davidson's rejection of the notion of language, as commonly understood in philosophy and linguistics, is justified. However, I argue that his position needs to be supplemented by an account of the development and nurture of pre-linguistic communicative skills. Davidson argues that knowledge of a language is neither sufficient nor necessary for 'linguistic' communication. The strongest argument against the initial formulation is that while Davidson may have shown that knowledge of a language is not (...)
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  47.  78
    Minimalism, Determinacy, and Human Rights.Robert Mark Simpson - 2021 - Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 34 (1):149-169.
    Many theorists understand human rights as only aiming to secure a minimally decent existence, rather than a positively good or flourishing life. Some of the theoretical considerations that support this minimalist view have been mapped out in the philosophical literature. The aim of this paper is to explain how a relatively neglected theoretical desideratum – namely, determinacy – can be invoked in arguing for human rights minimalism. Most of us want a theory of human rights whose demands can be realized, (...)
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  48. Moral Renegades. [REVIEW]Robert Mark Simpson - 2016 - The New Rambler Review 2016.
    This piece is a side-by-side review of two books: Strangers Drowning, by Larissa MacFarquhar, and Doing Good Better, by William MacAskill. Both books are concerned with the question of whether we should try to live as morally good a life as possible. MacAskill thinks the answer is 'yes', and his book is an overview of how the Effective Altruist movement approaches the problem of how to achieve a morally optimal life. MacFarquhar's book is a more descriptive account of the lives (...)
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  49. Review of Rowan Cruft, S. Matthew Liao, and Massimo Renzo (Eds.), Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights. [REVIEW]Robert Mark Simpson - 2019 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 16 (4):517-520.
    This is a review of a long, comprehensive, and mostly very good collection of philosophical essays on human rights. I briefly summarise the main ideas put forward in some of the essays that I most admired in the collection. While the collection includes essays from proponents of a wide range of theoretical and methodological perspectives, I suggest in my review that the collection's overall function is to serve as a kind of demonstrative rejoinder to those philosophers, like Raz, who argue (...)
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  50. Regulating Offense, Nurturing Offense.Robert Mark Simpson - 2018 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 17 (3):235-256.
    Joel Feinberg’s Offense to Others is the most comprehensive contemporary work on the significance of offense in a liberal legal system. Feinberg argues that being offended can impair a person’s liberty, much like a nuisance, and that it is therefore legitimate in principle to regulate conduct because of its offensiveness. In this article, I discuss some overlooked considerations that give us reason to resist Feinberg’s conclusion, even while granting this premise. My key claim is that the regulation of offense can (...)
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