Argumenta – Journal of Analytic Philosophy

 

Age and Self-Knowledge

Issue: • Author/s: Marianna Bergamaschi Ganapini
Topics: Epistemology, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of action, Philosophy of mind

This paper proposes an analysis of some possible implications of aging focusing the effects that aging may have on one’s self-knowledge. The goal of the paper is in fact to connect research on aging with different accounts of self-knowledge and put forward the following hypothesis: (i) in the late stages of our lives we adopt a different way of looking at ourselves, and (ii) there are three main factors likely causing this change: cognitive problems (episodic memory impairment), motivational factors (coherence-seeking), and loss of a forward-looking way of structuring our…

Agency without Action: On Responsibility for Omissions

Issue: • Author/s: Sofia Bonicalzi, Mario De Caro
Topics: Ethics, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of action

In the last few years, there has been a growing philosophical interest in the problem of moral responsibility for omissions. Like actions, however, omissions are not all-of-a-kind. Recently, most of the research effort in this field has been devoted to the so-called unwitting omissions. However, in some cases, people make clear-eyed, or quasi-clear-eyed, decisions about not interfering with a given course of action potentially having unethical consequences (let’s call these decisions witting omissions). In this paper, we abstract away from the epistemic concerns that typically refer to unwitting omissions to…

The Affective and Practical Consequences of Presentism and Eternalism

Issue: • Author/s: Mauro Dorato
Topics: Metaphysics, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of science

In the dispute between presentism and eternalism, the affective dimensions of the debate have been somewhat neglected. Contemporary philosophers of time have not tried to relate these ontological positions with two of the most discussed maxims in the history of ethics—“live in the present” vs. “look at your life under the aspect of the eternity” (sub specie aeternitatis)—that since the Hellenistic times have been regarded as strictly connected with them. Consequently, I raise the question of whether the endorsement of one of these two ontological views can make a practical…

The AI Ethics Principle of Autonomy in Health Recommender Systems

Issue: • Author/s: Simona Tiribelli
Topics: Epistemology, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of Medicine, Theoretical philosophy

The application of health recommender systems (HRSs) in the mobile-health (m-health) industry, especially for healthy active aging, has grown exponentially over the past decade. However, no research has been conducted on the ethical implications of HRSs and the ethical principles for their design. This paper aims to fill this gap and claims that an ethically informed re-definition of the AI ethics principle of autonomy is needed to design HRSs that adequately operationalize (that is, respect and promote) individuals’ autonomy over ageing. To achieve this goal, after having clarified the state-of-the-art on…

Virtue, Character, and Moral Responsibility: Against the Monolithic View

Issue: • Author/s: Giulia Luvisotto, Johannes Roessler
Topics: Epistemology, Ethics, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of action

A traditional tenet of virtue ethics is that a proper moral assessment of an action needs to be informed by a view of the agent; in particular, a view of their virtues or vices, as exhibited in their action. This picture has been challenged on the grounds that it is revisionary and ill-motivated. The key claim is that we are ordinarily disposed to judge the moral merits of particular actions independently of any view of the character of the agent, and that there is nothing wrong with that practice. In this paper, we identify…

Davidson on the Objectivity of Values and Reasons [Special Issue]

Issue: Issue 05 • Author/s: Pascal Engel
Topics: Ethics, History of Analytic Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, Theoretical philosophy

Although he did not write on ethics, Davidson wrote a few papers on the objectivity of values. His argument rests on his holistic conception of interpretation of desires. I examine whether this argument can be sufficient for his objectivism about values. And supposing that the argument were correct, would it entail a form of realism about normativity and reasons? I argue that it falls short of giving us a genuine form of moral realism. My case will rest on an examination of Davidson’s conception of value in relation to what…

The Immunity Capital [Special Issue]

Issue: Issue 13 • Author/s: Paolo Vineis, Andrea Saltelli
Topics: Epidemiology, Epistemology, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of Medicine, Philosophy of science

This paper is inspired by a thesis on “immune capital” by Kathryn Olivarius. We suggest that the biological capital, which immunity capital is part of, should be considered as an additional component of the life-course experience of individuals, together with the traditional Bourdieu’s social, economic and cultural capitals that drive their lives. Building upon this concept, we consider the relationships between science, society and policy-making in the course of the pandemic. We suggest that we need to ‘reframe problems so that their ethical dimensions are brought to light’ (Jasanoff), with…

Monitoring the Safety of Medicines and Vaccines in Times of Pandemic: Practical, Conceptual, and Ethical Challenges in Pharmacovigilance [Special Issue]

Issue: Issue 13 • Author/s: Elena Rocca, Birgitta Grundmark
Topics: Epidemiology, Epistemology, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of Medicine, Philosophy of science

In this paper, we analyse some of the challenges that pharmacovigilance, the science of detecting and assessing possible adverse reactions from medical interventions, is facing during the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, we consider the issue of increased uncertainty of the evidence and the issue of dealing with an unprecedented amount of data. After presenting the technical advances implemented in response to these two challenges, we offer some conceptual reflections around such practical changes. We argue that the COVID-19 emergency represents a chance to push forward critical thinking in the field…

Lying and Misleading in Context [Special Issue]

Issue: Issue 15 • Author/s: Palle Leth
Topics: Epistemology, Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of language, Theoretical philosophy

In this paper I question the lying/misleading distinction from three different angles. I argue, first, that if speakers are responsible for what they explicitly say only and hearers for what they infer that speakers implicitly convey, it is practically impossible to enforce speaker responsibility. An implication of this view is that the lying/misleading distinction is untenable. Other attempts at questioning the distinction have been countered by empirical evidence of the robustness of the distinction. However, there is also contrasting empirical evidence that people do think that it is possible to…

Dangerous Liaisons: The Pragmatics of Sexual Negotiation [Special Issue]

Issue: Issue 15 • Author/s: Claudia Bianchi
Topics: Moral Philosophy, Philosophy of language, Theoretical philosophy

The debate about speech acts in sexual contexts has been dominated by discussions of consent and refusal, two illocutions strictly connected to definitions of sexual assault and rape, which constitutes a crucial step in fighting male sexual violence against women. Many authors have recently claimed that this emphasis has a distorting and harmful impact on our understanding of sexual communication—for it highlights only its negative aspects (mostly how to avoid unwanted sex). Moreover, an account in terms of consent and refusal seems to presuppose a default asymmetrical scenario, with men…
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