1/2013

Adam Romaniuk

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy, University of Warsaw, Krakowskie Przedmieście 3, 00-047 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: a.romaniuk@uw.edu.pl

 

REMARKS ON JÜRGEN HABERMAS' EPISTEMOLOGY

 

ABSTRACT

In the paper Habermas' epistemology is viewed in two dimensions. In the dimension of the history of philosophy Habermas represents the widespread view claiming that epistemology has superseded the general ontology or metaphysics, and the more peculiar view that epistemology has been superseded by the linguistic philosophy, or rather transformed in it as the result of linguistic turn. In the dimension of the evolution of Habermas' epistemological views, and his attitude towards epistemological questions in general, several phases are to be distinguished. In the first one, theory of knowledge appears as a favoured aspect of the social theory practiced in the "interest of social emancipation", and it consists in the slashing criticism of empiricism, especially as a standpoint that determines the research perspectives of social sciences; and not the so slashing criticism of hermeneutics on account of its conservative orientation. In the second phase, Habermas gives up the epistemological perspective of critical social theory on behalf of a social ontology where he performs the rational reconstruction of the whole spectrum of "cultural knowledge", that is, composed of the three "validity dimensions" of communicative action and three types of communicative rationality: cognitive-instrumental, normative and expressive rationality, each of them being characterized by "co-originality" (Gleichursprünglichkeit) (the first type of rationality is only partially communicative). In the third phase, standing on this new ontological ground, he returns to the classical epistemological problems, to elaborate an attitude toward empiricism and hermeneutics, and to define anew his own position in the field. His criticism toward empiricism is now markedly toned down; Habermas' own pragmaticist position (referring to natural sciences) is corrected in the spirit of "weak transcendentalism" (which seems to bring Habermas' position closer to the correspondence theory of the truth). As for social sciences and social philosophy, an opening toward hermeneutics under the banner of "hermeneutical reconstructionism" occurs, in connection with "interpretative turn" in sociology.

Keywords: Habermas, epistemology, general ontology, philosophy of language, the critical theory, rational reconstruction, hermeneutical reconstructionism, social ontology, communicative action, communicative rationality, weak transcendental­ism.

 

 

 

Stanisław Czerniak

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: czerniak.stanislaw@wp.pl

 

GERNOT BÖHME'S VISION OF THE END OF THE BACONIAN ERA

 

ABSTRACT

The essay aims to reconstruct Gernot Böhme's "end of the Baconian age" concept in the context of the main theses of the "finalization in science" idea which he developed in the 1970s and 80s. Böhme has since retreated from some parts of his theorem, arguing their invalidity in light of the "twilight" of the Baconian era in science begun by Francis Bacon's methodological and philosophical program. Böhme polemizes with Bacon's claim that the evolution of empirical science automatically enhances civilizational progress, and lists some contemporary negative sides of scientific progress which he criticizes from the position of philosophy of science by suggesting its cognitive "alternatives".

Keywords: Baconian era (Baconian Age); finalization in science, scientific evolution alternatives, scientific revolutions, paradigms, rationalism/irrationalism in the context of the evolution of empirical science.

 

 

 

Krzysztof Kościuszko

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Kurta Obitza 1, 10-725 Olsztyn, Poland

E-mail: loislois@interia.pl

 

ON THE FEEDBACK BASED TRANSCEDENTALISM

 

ABSTRACT

In the article I put forth a new version of transcendentalizm which takes into account the current developments in science and philosophy. Ideas behind this transcendentalism are laid down in the course of discussion with authors like P.M. Churchland, J.J.C. Smartem, K. Popper, J. Searl, S. Pinker, E. Husserl, I. Kant and J. Konorski. I argue that transcendentalism should allow for conditions of possibility of knowledge quite different from those highlighted in orthodox accounts of transcendetalism by Kant or Husserl. More precisely, it should take into account the chemical, biological (neuronal) as well as psychological, economical and cultural conditions of cognition. The thinking self (the knowledge-producing self) can emerge granted that these conditions are met. All the possibility conditions interact (e.g. biological processes influence mental processes and vice versa), and while influencing the mind, they are also created and modulated by it feedback mechanisms.

Keywords: transcendentalism, chemical, biological, psychological, economical, cultural conditions of cognition.

 

 

 

Anna Michalska

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: michalskanna@gmail.com

 

THE TACIT KNOWLEGE PROBLEM TODAY. A NEUROCOGNITIVE PERSPECTIVE

 

ABSTRACT

Since its first introduction into the field of philosophy by Michael Polanyi, the problem of tacit knowledge has undergone a transformation. Nowadays the question is not so much whether the rules and assumptions governing theory choice are amenable to articulation and critical assessment, as it is if the methods of multi- and interdisciplinary research can be laid down and improved upon. The article addresses the problem of tacit knowledge in general, and the above-mentioned issue in particular, from the vantage point of cognitive neurosciences. More specifically, it considers the question of the possibility of coordination and management of corporate scientific activity in the light of the so called sensorimotor conception of learning and cognition. The paper is thought of as providing an example of the employment of neuroscientific conceptual framework in the domain of philosophy of science and epistemology.

Keywords: tacit knowledge, executive functions, interdisciplinary research, cog-nitive neuroscience.

 

 

 

Andrzej Gecow

Affiliation: Centre for Ecological Research, Polish Academy of Sciences, Dziekanow Lesny, 05-092 Łomianki, Poland

E-mail: gecow@op.pl

 

INFORMATION, FORMAL PURPOSEFULNESS AND SPONTANEITY IN THE BASIS OF LIFE DEFINITION

 

ABSTRACT

The purposefulness appears only in the area of a life process. I generalize the no­tion of information and encoding to apply them to a physical phenomena description. I use them to define the purposeful information—its example is a biological information, its quantity is an Eigen's information value. Next, I investigate the properties of the spontaneous process of purposeful information collecting. In effect, I get such properties of this process as: a goal "to exist", reproduction and Darwinian mechanism of random changeability and elimination. In this process appears a natu-ral identity criterion of evolving object connected to "small change tendency" and chaotic phase of system. They looks like the properties of the natural life, they derive from its spontaneity. If we will not find a difference, then we obtain definition of natural life process. Artificial life is constructed by living objects, is a part of natural life process and its properties are not an effect of own restrictions but of external assumptions.

 

 

 

Krzysztof Chodasewicz

Affiliation: Academy of Physiotherapy, Tadeusza Kościuszki 4, 50-038 Wrocław, Poland

E-mail: kchodasewicz@o2.pl

 

MULTIPLE REALIZATION AND LIFE

 

ABSTRACT

The paper discusses the problem of multiple realization of life. This problem has been broadly discussed in the philosophy of mind and the general philosophy of science, but most philosophers of biology ignored it. This is astonishing, because the biology provides the majority of arguments for the thesis of multiple realization of life (argument from convergence and argument from neural plasticity). My investigations concern the fundamental properties of life. Although we have not a universal and broadly accepted definition of life, I assume, as a working hypothesis, that the most important features of life are self-maintenance and the capability of the undergoing of the Darwinian evolution. Taking into account such a view of nature of life, I present different arguments for the possibility of multiple realization of living beings. The arguments are taken from the different fields of modern biology and philosophy of biology. The arguments are the following ones: Fodor's argument from convergence, an argument from the arbitrariness of genetic code, an argument form so-called shadow biosphere and similar argument connected with GFAJ-1 arsenic bacteria. I also show why artificial life's objects are not of special significance, when we search for the arguments for the thesis on the multiple realization of life. Finally, I show the significance of this thesis for searching for the definition and creating the scenarios of life's origin, exploring the universe in the searching of alien life forms and in the discussion about artificial life's objects status and signification of this status for different branches of philosophy of science and the scientific research.

Keywords:   multiple  realization,  definition  of life,  evolution,  convergence, shadow biosphere, astrobiology.

 

 

 

Włodzimierz Ługowski

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: wlugowsk@ifispan.waw.pl

 

THEORETICAL MODELS OF PREBIOLOGICAL EVOLUTION

 

ABSTRACT

The problem of philosophical foundations of the theories of prebiological evolution and life's origin has been vividly discussed in the recent years. As it outcomes, the opinion according which a "mature" branch of science can and should be "philosophy-free" (expressed by academic philosophers of neopositivistic orientation) is, unfortunately, shared sometimes also by scientists themselves. In the present article it is argued that the lack of philosophical consciousness by some origin-of-life researchers may deeply cause an erroneous presentation of this branch of science.

Keywords: life's origin, self-organization, theories of prebiological evolution.

 

 

 

Andrzej Wilk

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: awilk@ifispan.waw.pl

 

FUTURE TRUTH AND THE CONCEPT OF COMPUTABILITY

 

ABSTRACT

The text considers the problem of the application of the computability theory to empirical knowledge on future events. The fundamental problem examined in this paper is the following one: how to connect the intuitive concept of impredictability with the exact concept of computability? Central to this line of thought is the prob­lem: can the real world be modeled on a computer? The author assumes: firstly, that the knowledge about the future is stored in statements, secondly, that a way of its acquiring depends on the usage of mathematical formulas which describe the evolution in time, that is, which are motion equations (statements about the future are statements about the positions of objects in the future). The task is trivial: to show that the statements about the future can be formulated in a way that demands the non-algorithmic mathematics application. More precisely: to show that for every motion equation and all possible initial (input) data, there is no programme which answers yes/no to the question whether the equation has the periodic solutions or no. The scheme of reasoning is as follows: we assume (reductio ad absurdum) that the Tur­ing machine that solves every motion equation is equipped with the programme that cuts out periodic solutions. The testing of periodicity follo ws from the fact that its existence would show the computability of operation/function. It is obvious that the initial data must be computable/recursive. From that that the set real numbers is infinite/denumerable we can admit that some operation (function) will be uncom-putable (results: Banach/Mazur, Turing, Pour-El/Richards, Chaitin, Batterman). That allows to apply the "Stop-Theorem" for the Turing machine, and, in the effect, to set forth that the class of motion equations is undecidable.

Keywords: theory of computability, knowledge about the future, philosophy.

 

 

 

Małgorzata Czarnocka

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: mczarnoc@ifispan.waw.pl

 

THE STRONG PROGRAMME OF EDINBURGH SCHOOL FROM EPISTEMOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE

 

ABSTRACT

The conception of science postulated by the Edinburg School (the so called Strong Programme) is analysed from the philosophical perspective. It is shown that the conception has significant philosophical dimensions, being, in fact, not a ksociological, but rather typically philosophical conception of science. It is also shown that its important aspects are in close correspondence to relevant aspects of the rationalistic philosophical theories of science.

Keywords: the Strong Programme, rationalistic theories of science, realism, relativism, interests.

 

 

 

Małgorzata Czarnocka

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: mczarnoc@ifispan.waw.pl

 

THE STRONG PROGRAMME'S IDEAL OF SCIENCE. THE AUTONOMY OF SCIENCE PROBLEM

 

ABSTRACT

The paper reveals the ideal of science founding the conception of science proposed by the Strong Programme. The problem of autonomy of science as it is viewed in the Strong Programme is discussed and compared with the multi-dimensional lack of autonomy postulated in contemporary rationalistic approaches to science.

Keywords: autonomy of science, ideal of science.

 

 

 

Halina Walentowicz

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy, University of Warsaw, Krakowskie Przedmieście 3, 00-047 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: halinawalentowicz@uw.edu.pl

 

PHILOSOPHY, SCIENCE, STUDYING IN MAX HORKHEMER'S VIEWS

 

ABSTRACT

This paper reconstructs Max Horkheimer's views on interrelations between science and religion. It is shown that Horkheimer criticizes both the neopositivistic scientism which renders science the role of monopoly of cognition, and neo-romantic anti-intellectualism which depreciates scientific cognition by removing from it truth. According to Horkheimer, philosophy is not able to substitute science, and it should not be its instrument. He equalizes blind faith in science with blind faith in religion, treating both as equally disastrous for thinking and the development of culture, and, in consequence, for human life. He proclaims himself in favour of the autonomy of philosophical thinking towards all forms of dogmatism. He considers the lack of autonomy in modernity as leading to a cultural crisis. He sees a hope for its weakening in the postulated reform of academic education; he postulates that it should offer not only professional competencies, but also the attitude of mental maturity recommended already by Kant.

Keywords: philosophy, science, education, cultural crisis.

 

 

 

Michał Piekarski

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University, Wóycickiego 1/3, 01–938 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: m.piekarski@uksw.edu.pl

 

ON LUDWIG WITTGENSTEIN' PHILOSOPHICAL METHOD — FROM ANALYSIS TO MORPHOLOGY

 

ABSTRACT

The article discusses the problem of the unity of Wittgenstein's philosophy. The author suggests that Wittgenstein uses different methods of inquiring. The modifications of his philosophy are correlated with modifications of his method of thinking and investigations. In Tractatus logico-philosophicus the only correct philosophical method is that of logical analysis of sentences. In early 30s his philosophy becomes a phenomenological description of experience. The task is to construct phenomenological language. After 1933 Wittgenstein recognizes the grammatical dimension of language, and creates tools of grammatical analysis. He introduces concepts of language games and forms of life. His philosophy becomes the morphology and descrip­tion of human linguistic practice.

Keywords: Wittgenstein, philosophical grammar, morphology, logical analysis, phenomenology, philosophy of language.

 

 

 

Marek Maciejczak

Affiliation: Warsaw University of Technology, Pl. Politechniki 1, 00-661 Warsaw, Poland

E-mail: m.maciejczak@ans.pw.edu.pl

 

WITTGENSTEIN – SOME EXAMPLES OF LINGUISTIC ERRORS

 

ABSTRACT

The article presents linguistic sources of philosophical conceptions. The main reasons that lead philosophers astray are grammatical analogies and the similarity of grammatical structure. Wittgenstein points contexts of use of philosophically interesting words. Beauty, goodness, truth, time, thinking, mind…etc. — these words play a certain role in our way of speaking, but they do not denote facts.

Keywords: Wittgenstein, meaning, grammar, use, linguistic errors.

 

 

 

Sebastian Bakuła

Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Nowy Świat 72, 00-330 Warszawa, Poland

E-mail: sebnemo@wp.pl

 

THE PROBLEM OF COGNITION IN KANT’S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON AS A THEORETICAL PROPOSAL FOR CONTEMPORARY EPISTEMOLOGY

 

ABSTRACT

The considerations presented in the paper are an interpretation of selected elements of Immanuel Kant’s epistemology. The author shows topicality of some Kant's conceptions, inter alia, those concerning theory-ladenness of observations, categorization and the role of cognitive subject, actively organizing the world of experience.

Keywords: transcendentalism, epistemology, subject, object, form.