To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
This chapter discusses the place of conflict in transitional justice. Building on a range of historical real-life examples, it argues that conflict is an important rather than incidental part of many, if not all, transitional justice processes. The chapter initially focuses on value conflicts and then turns to conflicts of interests (political power, offices, money, etc.). Drawing on recent realist work in political theory, the chapter argues that it is time to give politics its due and idealisation a rest in transitional justice. This is not an argument against ideals, but against an approach that is idealistic in the wrong sense, in such a way as to suppress, erase from view, real experiences of conflict. Towards the end, the chapter explores recent attempts in the transitional justice literature to take conflict more seriously, particularly Christine Bell’s account of transitional justice as bargaining.
After Wittgenstein, the most immediately visible – though by no means the only – philosopher addressed in Wallace’s work is the neopragmatist Richard Rorty, whose book Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature provided the title for one of Wallace’s later stories, a narrative concerned with the nature and revelation of truth. Indeed, the pragmatic concept that truth is a matter of vocabulary became one of the central pillars of Wallace’s own philosophy, as critics, including Hayes-Brady and Tracey, have shown. This chapter offers some context for reading the pragmatic strain that animates especially Wallace’s later works, including treatment of the liberal ironist and the question of the constituted other. Opening with an introduction to the history of the American pragmatic tradition, we move on to consider its direct and implicit presences in Wallace’s work, concluding with the proposal of a pragmatic model for reading Wallace’s writing in both thematic and structural frames.
Though primarily known and studied as a writer of fiction, Wallace was an avid reader and writer of nonfiction. This chapter explores the ways in which his nonfiction attempts to direct and sometimes complicates a reading of his fiction, as well as appraising the nonfiction in its own cultural context. The essay offers a taxonomy of Wallace’s nonfictional forms, connecting the work with his broader representational project for life in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. The chapter works to interrogate Wallace’s creation of an authorial persona that created, sought to control and often undermined the extratextual persona of its author. Framing the essays as both complementing and challenging the fiction, this chapter assesses the “impervious sun” of the nonfiction as an important voice of the contemporary period in its own right.
In little more than a couple of years (1919–22) Keynes published three books that contrasted not only in style but in substance when they addressed a common theme: the nature of truth. Thus in the Economic Consequences he proposed a ‘ruthless truth-telling’ about what had happened in Paris. When his intimidating academic tome A Treatise on Probability was finally published in 1921, it offered a defence of objective perception. A few months later, A Revision of the Treaty suggested that truth in politics was little more than a prejudice that might be at odds with practical good. The first part of this chapter explores how Keynes sought to reconcile such views, especially under the criticism of the brilliant young Cambridge mathematician Frank Ramsey, whose insights continue to excite attention today. How far Keynes ‘yielded’ to Ramsey’s view is thus a central issue.
It has long been a puzzle to reconcile two well-known facts: first that the Economic Consequences became the received version on the left for a contemptuous view of Lloyd George; second, that Keynes came to cooperate so closely with Lloyd George in seeking to revive the Liberal party in the 1920s. Their own relationship had begun during the First World War, when Keynes was first drawn into advising the Treasury on key policy issues from 1914. It was in these years that Keynes benefited from the sponsorship of Edwin Montagu, a key minister in the Liberal government. This chapter shows how much Lloyd George’s initial hostility to Keynes on economic policy was the product of a cultural clash between them; also how this came to be resolved (at least temporarily) when Keynes picked up economic insights from Lloyd George’s untutored intuitions. And the chapter draws on the memoir ‘Dr Melchior’, composed by Keynes for his Bloomsbury friends, to illustrate the way that – almost against his own prejudices – he became captivated by Lloyd George’s intuitive mastery of the political process.
The chapter addresses the relation between post-Gricean pragmatics and intercultural pragmatics. As such, it addresses meaning in relation to intentions and inferences and provides an overview of the main developments in this tradition, placing them in the context of the utility they have for understanding cross-cultural communication, and specifically the acquisition of pragmatic competence. Section 1.2 introduces the concept of pragmatic universals and moves to discussing how Grice’s account of cooperative conversational behavior can be viewed as such pragmatic universal principles. After pointing out some problems with Grice’s original account as it is seen from the perspective of several decades, Section 1.3 proceeds to post-Gricean approaches to linguistic communication, focusing not so much on the traditional debates concerning the number and scope of the necessary maxims or principles (covered briefly in Section 1.3.1) but rather on the semantics/pragmatic boundary and the related question of the truth-conditional content that opened up interesting contextualist pursuits (Section 1.3.2). Section 1.4 addresses different versions of contextualism and places them in the context of the debates between minimalists and contextualists. Section 1.5 concludes with comments on the utility of post-Gricean pragmatics for intercultural communication, stressing the significance of pragmatic universals.
‘Scientific realism’ has somehow come to designate a fundamentally unrealistic doctrine claiming for humans an ability to gain true knowledge about an ultimately inaccessible kind of reality. This unrealistic notion actually does harm by setting science an impossible task, inviting disappointment and challenges to its authority. This book offers an operational ideal of scientific inquiry inspired by the tradition of pragmatism: thinking about what we do in real practices offers ways of reconceiving the very notions of truth and reality so that they become achievable ideals and provide guidance for real scientific progress.
This chapter will argue that the ontological categories that we require for understanding meaning and meaning composition in natural language cannot be exclusively proxied by external objects in the world or judgments of truth. In other words, a set of metaphysically justified ontological objects is not what is required for natural language ontology, and the latter field should be considered a distinct philosophical and analytical exercise. The chapter takes as its central empirical ground the meaning of ’nonfinite’ verb forms in English. Paradoxes relating to the English progressive and passive constructions will be examined to show that lexical conceptual content needs to be defined more essentially, and that the integration of such essentialist content into forms which ultimately have extensionalist import requires the reification of the symbol qua symbol and the explicit representation of the utterance situation.
There are many different things we mean when we say that something is true. What is the relevant sense of truth operative in actual practices, and in the actual judgements that we make concerning the epistemic quality of propositions? It is helpful to start with a distinction between secondary truth (which is grounded in the truth of other propositions), and primary truth (which is not). Concerning the meaning of primary truth in empirical domains, I propose the following definition: a proposition is true to the extent that there are operationally coherent activities that can be performed by relying on it. This ‘truth-by-operational-coherence’ is not a matter of binary yes-or-no, but a quality with many dimensions. It also provides secure underpinnings for epistemic pluralism: mutually incommensurable systems of practice can each contain a set of propositions that are true-by-operational-coherence. Through this notion of truth we can also rehabilitate James’s pragmatist theory of truth.
The chapter opens by considering Johnson’s seemingly hostile attitude to the eighteenth-century novel and its realistic portrayals of human life, as contrasted with that of his contemporary Henry Fielding. It places The Rambler’s theoretical strictures on such writing alongside Johnson’s views on biography and practice as a writer of fiction in Rasselas, eliciting his various contradictory opinions on representing bad characters and negative examples in literature. The chapter shows how, for Johnson, human imagination is both dangerous – competing with truth for control of the human psyche – and a positive source of creative energy. Fiction is sometimes therefore synonymous, in his mind, with falsehood and unreality. But it is also synonymous with literature of all kinds, and with the human endeavor to depict the world and other people in strikingly new and powerful ways that may, paradoxically, “awaken us to things as they are.”
Johnson’s stand against prejudice is reflected in the critical and editorial aspects of his “Shakespeare.” His editions contain the distinguished Preface and notes and express Johnson’s dialogue with earlier editions. This chapter considers Johnson on the methods of Pope, Theobald, Hanmer, and Warburton and suggests the collaborative nature of Johnson’s contributions. Defending “the dull duty of an editor,” Johnson concedes the task is impossible, and his later editions display second thoughts, generally favoring conservative readings. Johnson’s notes are varied and clarify meanings through paraphrase, with examples from Measure for Measure and Othello, the latter exemplifying Johnson’s sensitivity to female suffering. The central criterion of Johnson’s criticism – “general nature” – is then addressed. The essay concludes with detailed analysis of the death of Cardinal Beaufort from Henry VI Part 2, a scene heavily marked up by Johnson in his Warburton and described as “scarcely the work of any pen but Shakespeare’s.”
We begin by demonstrating the importance of the ideas of Karl Popper to corpus linguistics. On that basis we begin an exploration of his ideas in order to understand both his account of the scientific method and how this method may illuminate aspects of the corpus-based approach to the study of language.
This chapter explores Heidegger’s challenge to the claim that logic is authorative in the following sense: Putative logical propositions demand assent and serve to constrain our thinking about nonlogical subject areas such as metaphysics, and they do so because these logical truths are true in virtue of the essence of the logical. The chapter argues that, given Heidegger's metaphysics, his rejection of the authority of logic so construed is defensible. Specifically, it discusses how his nonpropositional theory of the fundamental bearers of truth and his ontological pluralism undercut this construal of the authority of logic. On this view, Heidegger is less interested in revising or rejecting principles such as the law of noncontradiction than he is in defending his right to revise or reject these principles if his metaphysical investigations demand that he does so.
Traditional logic dominates Western thinking by centering thinking on propositions and thereby restricting the meaning of "being" to its derivative, categorial meaning. In Heidegger’s view, it fails in this way to realize the promise of a philosophical logic, one that is capable of tracing traditional logic and thinking generally back to their foundation, i.e., the being/unconcealment of the logos from which they are derived. This chapter examines how, as a first step toward realizing that promise, Heidegger questions the supremacy of logic in Western thinking through a “critical deconstruction” of four theses underlying it: the thesis that judgment is the place of truth rather than vice versa, that the copula exhausts the meaning of "being," that nothingness originates from negation rather than vice versa, and that the predicative structure of propositions constitutes the essence of language. In conclusion, the chapter suggests that the construction ultimately accompanying Heidegger’s deconstruction is to be found, not in language as Dasein’s comportment, but in the revealing capacity of tautology to which he appeals in his final seminar (1973).
It is a platitude that belief is subject to a standard of correctness: a belief is correct if and only if it is true. But not all standards of correctness are authoritative or binding. Some standards of correctness may be arbitrary, unjustified or outrightly wrong. Given this, one challenge to proponents of the truth norm of belief, is to answer what Korsgaard (1996) calls ‘the normative question’. Is the truth norm of belief authoritative or binding regarding what one ought to or may believe? If so, what grounds its authority? The aim of this paper is to offer a novel answer to the grounding challenge on a reason-based normative framework. I develop and defend a practice-based account of the truth norm, according to which, the authority of the truth norm of belief is grounded in what I call the T-practice, a justified social practice that functions to facilitate knowledge production, maintenance, and social cooperation.
Can finite humans grasp universal truth? Is it possible to think beyond the limits of reason? Are we doomed to failure because of our finitude? In this clear and accessible book, Barnabas Aspray presents Ricœur's response to these perennial philosophical questions through an analysis of human finitude at the intersection of philosophy and theology. Using unpublished and previously untranslated archival sources, he shows how Ricœur's groundbreaking concept of symbols leads to a view of creation, not as a theological doctrine, but as a mystery beyond the limits of thought that gives rise to philosophical insight. If finitude is created, then it can be distinguished from both the Creator and evil, leading to a view of human existence that, instead of the 'anguish of no' proclaims the 'joy of yes.'
Undergraduate research requires students to address key contemporary issues that challenge democratic society: how knowledge develops, how truth is established, and the importance of values and relationships within the scientific endeavor. This chapter argues that undergraduate research rests on, and has grown as a consequence of, changes in how knowledge is produced, including the freeing of disciplinary boundedness and the democratization of knowledge production. The latter is fundamental to undergraduate research because it raises questions about the relationship of research to society. It critically questions who the scholars are in universities and challenges elitist notions regarding the generation of knowledge. The chapter argues that fundamental philosophical challenges that underpin traditional research, and still persist in research practice, have provided opportunities for new forms of research and pedagogy. As such, undergraduate research has the capacity to transform students’ lives and to teach them how to live and work in a complex society characterized by ambiguity and unpredictability.
With special reference to Diotima’s teaching in Plato’s Symposium, this chapter discusses the central importance to Hermetic spirituality of beauty and reverence (eusebeia), Hermetic psychological theory, and the centrality of imagination to the Hermetic concept of “becoming aiōn” and gaining cosmic consciousness.
There is a tendency, at least among secular readers, to bracket off Dante’s faith as something no longer true, something to which we no longer subscribe. Yet that would seem to miss not just an aspect of the Divine Comedy, but its central point. The episodes in the Inferno this volume focuses on, paradigmatic for the whole work, point to a problem of faith – lack of a shared belief, misreadings of important stories, failed allegiance, and broken promises. But it is the choice of Virgil as a guide, lost because of his belief in “false and lying gods,” that teaches us how to read ancient books whose culture we no longer share. How indeed can we believe in them?
The constituent elements of the book: Hermetic spirituality, the historical imagination, alterations of consciousness, the relation between language and experiential knowledge, and radical agnosticism in the study of religion. Narrative historiography and historical-comparative methods.