Physicalism Physicalism is closely related to materialism. Physicalism grew out of materialism with the success of the physical sciences in explaining observed phenomena. The terms are often used interchangeably, although they are sometimes distinguished, for example on the basis of physics describing more than just matter (including energy and physical law). Definition of physical The use of "physical" in physicalism is a philosophical concept and can be distinguished from alternative definitions found in the literature (e.g. From the notion of supervenience, we see that, assuming that mental, social, and biological properties supervene on physical properties, it follows that two hypothetical worlds cannot be identical in their physical properties but differ in their mental, social or biological properties. Two common approaches to defining "physicalism" are the theory-based and object-based approaches. Supervenience-based definitions of physicalism Realisation physicalism
Idealism The 20th-century British scientist Sir James Jeans wrote that "the Universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine." Beginning with Immanuel Kant, German idealists such as G. W. Definitions Any philosophy that assigns crucial importance to the ideal or spiritual realm in its account of human existence may be termed "idealist". Subjective idealists like George Berkeley are anti-realists in terms of a mind-independent world, whereas transcendental idealists like Immanuel Kant are strong skeptics of such a world, affirming epistemological and not metaphysical idealism. Classical idealism Monistic idealism holds that consciousness, not matter, is the ground of all being. Anaxagoras (480 BC) was known as "Nous" ("Mind") because he taught that "all things" were created by Mind, that Mind held the cosmos together and gave human beings a connection to the cosmos or a pathway to the divine. Many religious philosophies are specifically idealist. therefore;
Naturalism Naturalism is "the idea or belief that only natural (as opposed to supernatural or spiritual) laws and forces operate in the world; (occas.) the idea or belief that nothing exists beyond the natural world." Adherents of naturalism (i.e., naturalists) assert that natural laws are the rules that govern the structure and behavior of the natural universe, that the changing universe at every stage is a product of these laws. "Naturalism can intuitively be separated into a [metaphysical] and a methodological component. In contrast, assuming naturalism in working methods, without necessarily considering naturalism as an absolute truth with philosophical entailments, is called methodological naturalism. The subject matter here is a philosophy of acquiring knowledge. With the exception of pantheists—who believe that Nature and God are one and the same thing—theists challenge the idea that nature is all there is. The term "methodological naturalism" for this approach is much more recent.
Dialectic Dialectic (also dialectics and the dialectical method) is a method of argument for resolving disagreement that has been central to European and Indian philosophy since antiquity. The word dialectic originated in ancient Greece, and was made popular by Plato in the Socratic dialogues. The dialectical method is discourse between two or more people holding different points of view about a subject, who wish to establish the truth of the matter guided by reasoned arguments. The term dialectics is not synonymous with the term debate. The Sophists taught aretē (Greek: ἀρετή, quality, excellence) as the highest value, and the determinant of one's actions in life. Socrates favoured truth as the highest value, proposing that it could be discovered through reason and logic in discussion: ergo, dialectic. Principles It is also possible that the rejection of the participants' presuppositions is resisted, which then might generate a second-order controversy. Western dialectical forms
Reductionism Descartes held that non-human animals could be reductively explained as automata — De homine, 1662. Reductionism strongly reflects a certain perspective on causality. In a reductionist framework, the phenomena that can be explained completely in terms of relations between other more fundamental phenomena, are called epiphenomena. Reductionism does not preclude the existence of what might be called emergent phenomena, but it does imply the ability to understand those phenomena completely in terms of the processes from which they are composed. Religious reductionism generally attempts to explain religion by boiling it down to certain nonreligious causes. Types Richard H. Theoretical reductionism Theoretical reduction is the process by which one theory absorbs another. Methodological reductionism Methodological reductionism is the position that the best scientific strategy is to attempt to reduce explanations to the smallest possible entities. Ontological reductionism
What Does the Zombie Genre Say about the Modern West? - Rw005g The ever-changing currents of a nation's cultural fibre, social mindset and mass psychology can often be traced by engaging in an in-depth examination of the popular culture prevalent at any given point in time. Oftentimes, fictional pieces, whether in magazine, novel/novela, musical/opera, movie or television show, when created during said period of time can often reveal more about mindset of contemporaries than most nonfictional accounts, even those written during the time period in question by so-called cultural observers and academics. A poor, 1880s-era, B-grade novel from Great Britain about some fictional character living in the ancient Roman Empire can sometimes and in some ways tell you more about Victorian Britain than it can about the realities of ancient Rome. When we look at movies and cultural themes, I am struck by the prevalence of zombie movies and novels. Clearly, these period pieces tell us more about Americans during this period then they do about Aliens. Who knows.
Holism For the suffix, see holism. Holism (from Greek ὅλος holos "all, whole, entire") is the idea that natural systems (physical, biological, chemical, social, economic, mental, linguistic, etc.) and their properties should be viewed as wholes, not as collections of parts. This often includes the view that systems function as wholes and that their functioning cannot be fully understood solely in terms of their component parts. Reductionism may be viewed as the complement of holism. Social scientist and physician Nicholas A. History The term "holism" was coined in 1926 by Jan Smuts, a South African statesman, in his book Holism and Evolution. Smuts defined holism as the "tendency in nature to form wholes that are greater than the sum of the parts through creative evolution". The idea has ancient roots. The concept of holism played a pivotal role in Baruch Spinoza's philosophy and more recently in that of Hegel and Edmund Husserl. In science
» CfP: What are zombies and why are they now so prevalent across both pop culture and academia? The Sociological Imagination Does it suddenly seem like the living dead are everywhere? Lumbering past cyborgs, mutants, werewolves, and, yes, even vampires, zombies are the monsters du jour. Zombies have taken up residence in the pages of fiction (literary hits such as Colson Whitehead’s Zone One, The Walking Dead comic books, pulp zombie apocalypse narratives such as World War Z, and young adult fiction such as Warm Bodies) and inhabit our various screens, from television shows such as AMC’s ubiquitous The Walking Dead, to movies (from 1968’s Night of the Living Dead to the more recent 28 Days Later, I Am Legend, and Shaun of the Dead), and video games (Resident Evil, Left 4 Dead). What are zombies and why are they now so prevalent across both pop culture and academia? Completed papers must be submitted by September 30, 2013. Submit electronic copies of completed papers (3000 – 6000 words). All manuscripts submitted, or revised, for publication must be in Microsoft Word format. (HT Critical-Theory.Com)
Monism Monism is the philosophical view that a variety of existing things can be explained in terms of a single reality or substance. The wide definition states that all existing things go back to a source which is distinct from them (e.g. in Neoplatonism everything is derived from The One). A commonly-used, restricted definition of monism asserts the presence of a unifying substance or essence. One must distinguish "stuff monism" from "thing monism". According to stuff monism there is only one kind of stuff (e.g. matter or mind), although there may be many things made out of this stuff. The term monism originated from Western philosophy, and has often been applied to various religions. History It was later also applied to the theory of absolute identity set forth by Hegel and Schelling. According to Jonathan Schaffer, monism lost popularity due to the emergence of Analytic philosophy in the early twentieth century, which revolted against the neo-Hegelians. Definitions a. b.