How We Fight: Ethics in War

2014.12.22 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Helen Frowe and Gerald Lang (eds.), How We Fight: Ethics in War, Oxford University Press, 2014, 196pp., $55.00 (hbk), ISBN
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2014.12.22 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Helen Frowe and Gerald Lang (eds.), How We Fight: Ethics in War, Oxford University Press, 2014, 196pp., $55.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199673438. Reviewed by Mark Jensen, United States Air Force Academy Classical Just War Theory is in crisis. The breakdown of the Westphalian international order, the muddling of the distinction between combatants and non-combatants, and the rise of ethnic, tribal, and religious conflict together undermine the central presuppositions of the tradition. However, international recognition of the principles of classical just war theory is a strong as ever. For example, many nations use force only in defense, and nearly all justify their use of force only in these terms. New weapons and tactics have been developed to minimize threats to non-combatants. Moreover, the approach of Western nations to ending conflict is to secure a path toward popular sovereignty, representative governance,. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Ayn Rand in Las Vegas

Ayn Rand on the Strip. Both Las Vegas and Objectivism offer an escape from reality. How fitting that acolytes of the turgid novelist descended on the city…
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Ayn Rand on the Strip. Both Las Vegas and Objectivism offer an escape from reality. How fitting that acolytes of the turgid novelist descended on the city… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Orwell’s journalism

When it comes to Orwell, we risk beatifying the man. Best to state what’s simple and true: He was always interesting, even when he was wrong…
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When it comes to Orwell, we risk beatifying the man. Best to state what’s simple and true: He was always interesting, even when he was wrong… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

The Foreign Spell

Cherish foreignness. Enjoying the convenience of modern travel, we underestimate the differences of other lands. That’s a mistake…
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Cherish foreignness. Enjoying the convenience of modern travel, we underestimate the differences of other lands. That’s a mistake… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Badiou and Plato: An Education by Truths

2014.12.21 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews A. J. Bartlett, Badiou and Plato: An Education by Truths, Edinburgh University Press, 2011, 248pp., $120.00 (hbk), ISBN
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2014.12.21 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews A. J. Bartlett, Badiou and Plato: An Education by Truths, Edinburgh University Press, 2011, 248pp., $120.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780748643752. Reviewed by Russell Grigg, Deakin University This book is something of a tour de force. A. J. Bartlett has crafted an elegant and subtle analysis of the meaning of Socrates and Plato -- or "Platocrates" as he calls the subject of the dialogues -- by drawing on the philosophical program of Alain Badiou. The result is an original and compelling study of Plato, one that breaks with some of the standard readings of the dialogues -- the discussion of Gregory Vlastos in chapter 5 is particularly compelling in this respect -- and the analysis goes well beyond a compare and contrast exercise, delivering as it does genuine insights into the dialogues. In fact the juxtaposition of Badiou with Plato is not at all unmotivated. Badiou has famously described his philosophy as... . . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Zhuangzi

[Revised entry by Chad Hansen on December 17, 2014. Changes to: 0] Zhuangzi (Chuang-tzu 莊子 "Master Zhuang" late 4th century BC) is the pivotal figure in Classical Philosophical Daoism. The
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[Revised entry by Chad Hansen on December 17, 2014. Changes to: 0] Zhuangzi (Chuang-tzu 莊子 "Master Zhuang" late 4th century BC) is the pivotal figure in Classical Philosophical Daoism. The Zhuangzi is a compilation of his and others' writings at the pinnacle of the philosophically subtle Classical period in China (5th - 3rd century BC). The period was marked by humanist and naturalist reflections on normativity shaped by the metaphor of a dao - a social or a natural path. Traditional...

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News source: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

The Slogan-Industrial Complex

Higher education in the United States has been pushed steadily towards the business model. One obvious example of this is the brand merchandizing of schools. In 2011, schools licensed their names
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University of South Florida Seal (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Higher education in the United States has been pushed steadily towards the business model. One obvious example of this is the brand merchandizing of schools. In 2011, schools licensed their names and logos for a total of $4.6 billion. Inspired by this sort of brand-based profits, schools started trademarking their slogans. Impressively, there are over 10,000 trademarked slogans. These slogans include “project safety” (University of Texas), “ready to be heard” (Chatham University), “power” (University of North Dakota), “rise above” (University of the Rockies), “students with diabetes” (University of South Florida), “student life” (Washington University in St. Louis) and “resolve” (Lehigh University). Those not familiar with trademark law might be surprised by some of these examples. After all, “student life” seems to be such a common phrase on campuses that it would be insane for a school to be allowed to trademark it. But, one. . .

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News source: Talking Philosophy

Torture

In December of 2014 the US Senate issued its report on torture. While there has been some criticism of the report, the majority of pundits and politicians have not come out in defense of torture.
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English: John McCain official photo portrait. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) In December of 2014 the US Senate issued its report on torture. While there has been some criticism of the report, the majority of pundits and politicians have not come out in defense of torture. However, there have been attempts to justify the use of torture and this essay will address some of these arguments. One criticism of the report is not a defense of torture as such. The talking point is a question, typically of the form “why bring this up now?” The argument lurking behind this point seems to be that since the torture covered in the report occurred years ago, it should not be discussed now. This is similar to another stock remark made to old wrongs, namely “get over it.” This does raise a worthwhile concern, namely the expiration date of moral concern. Or, to use an analogy to law, the matter of the moral statute of limitations on misdeeds. On the face of it, it is reasonable to accept that the passage of. . .

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News source: Talking Philosophy

The Mechanics of Divine Foreknowledge and Providence: A Time- Ordering Account

2014.12.20 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews T. Ryan Byerly, The Mechanics of Divine Foreknowledge and Providence: A Time- Ordering Account, Bloomsbury, 2014, 131pp., $100.00
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2014.12.20 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews T. Ryan Byerly, The Mechanics of Divine Foreknowledge and Providence: A Time- Ordering Account, Bloomsbury, 2014, 131pp., $100.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781623565596. Reviewed by William Lane Craig, Talbot School of Theology/Houston Baptist University In the current debate over divine foreknowledge of future contingents two questions predominate: (1) whether God's knowledge of future events is compatible with their contingency, and (2) how God can have knowledge of future contingent events. As T. Ryan Byerly's title intimates, his purpose is to offer a new account of how God foreknows future contingents. His account thus addresses the second of the two questions. The book is divided into two parts. In the first Byerly attempts to situate his account within the framework of the ongoing debate over the first question. In the second he unfolds his own answer to the question of how God has literal foreknowledge of future. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Art of Not Trying

Wu wei, the art of trying – but not too hard – is central to romance, religion, politics, and business. Those ancient Chinese philosophers were on to something…
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Wu wei, the art of trying – but not too hard – is central to romance, religion, politics, and business. Those ancient Chinese philosophers were on to something… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily