Vol. 3 (2018), Issue 1

Vol. 3 (2018), Issue 1 (open)

ORIGINAL ARTICLES

 

Bogdan Olaru   -PHILOSOPHY--------

Institute of Economic and Social Research, Romanian Academy, Iași

Teza statutului moral egal. Dilema egalitarianului / The Theory of Equal Moral Status. The Egalitarian Dilemma
Keywords: moral status; equality; equal moral consideration; the egalitarian dilemma;

The ideal of moral equality allows for various interpretations depending on one’s preferred focus (interests, dignity, etc.). I argue that, whatever the focus, the call for equality ends up in difficulties prompted by what I describe as the argument from essential characteristic. This argument puts the question of equality in terms of finding a criterion of moral status that is both clear-cut and morally relevant. In the first section, I present this argument and the resulting egalitarian dilemma, which states that no criterion can meet both requirements. The second section displays three ways in which this dilemma was used against the ideal of moral equality: rejecting equality altogether, downgrading equality as derivative principle subservient to other principles, and as a counterargument to any attempt to justify equality based on alleged humankind’s defining features. I discuss some ways of deconstructing the egalitarian dilemma, but I dismiss them as unsatisfactory. It follows that the most pertinent way to make the case for equality as a fundamental principle and source of moral obligations is, given the strength of the egalitarian dilemma, to accept this dilemma as a successful objection against the argu-ment that equal moral consideration originates in some special characteristic that defines moral status and is shared by those described as equals. One should look for other meaningful, non-metaphysical ways to justify equality.

Vol. 2 (2017), Issue 1

Vol. 2 (2017), Issue 1 (open)

ORIGINAL ARTICLES

 

Oana Șerban   -PHILOSOPHY--------

University of Bucharest

‘Efectul Foucault’ asupra modelelor guvernării academice: Genealogia puterii educaționale în era capitalismului cultural / The ‘Foucault Effect’ on the Models of Academic Governance: The Genealogy of the Educational Power in the Age of Cultural Capitalism
Keywords: the ‘Foucault Effect’; educational policies; academic management, Panopticon; educational governance and governmentality; Durkheim; Foucault;

This article aims to explore the so-called ‘Foucauldian effect’ on different contemporary models of academic governance. In these models, educational institutions are defined as parts of a large apparatus of social observation and they are integrated in blocs of power that act within a disciplinary society. My thesis is that academic environments function as normalizing institutions in which the educational management is regarded as the result of the discursive production of power, inspired by “the art of (self) government”, following Foucault’s argument. In the first three sections of my article, I will investigate the relationship between governance and governmentality in educational terms. My analysis focuses on the role of social constraints in determining the ideological construction of these two concepts, in the light of Foucault’s and Durkheim’s critiques. In the last four sections, I will focus on the Foucauldian critical on three models of encapsulating the educational management at micro-institutional level through bureaucracy, Fordian, and Taylorian mechanisms of economic and social discipline. I will argue that each model depends on the cultural capital they involve, a premise that might be applied in the contemporary attempts of reforming educational policies.

 

Irina Frasin   -CULTURAL STUDIES--------

Institute of Economic and Social Research, Romanian Academy, Iași

The Middle-Eastern Conflict and the Image of the Other. The War Photography and Reframing of Perspectives
Keywords: war; photography; conflict; Islamic state; refugees; perspectives;

We are all familiar with the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East – the Syrian war being perhaps the most tragic event – the refugee crisis and the terrorist threat. But from the Western point of view, it seems that the turmoil is somehow connected to the area. And this sometimes leaves us too indifferent to the real suffering of people just because these people are from an alien and doomed land. It seems like the violence happening in this area cannot be understood in its full extent and this becomes clear when we parallel the reactions to the conflicts happening there and the terrorist attacks in the West. This paper argues that photography can alter our perspectives and make realities that seem far out of reach look closer to us. We are examining the work of five artists that try to cope with their own traumatic experiences and open for us new perspectives on a crisis that has already last for too long.

 

Cătălina-Daniela Răducu   -CULTURAL STUDIES--------

Institute of Economic and Social Research, Romanian Academy, Iași

Objectification and Sexual Violence: Radical Feminism Revisited
Keywords: social construction of gender; radical feminism; sexual violence; dominance theory; objectification;

This paper reassesses Catharine MacKinnon’s main claims on what generates sexual violence against women. Firstly, I show that the liberal view on gender equality does not provide an adequate answer to the difficult and pressing question of sexism and sexual violence. In fact, we are still far from the right answer if we look at the growing body of testimonies about sexual abuse and harassment shared under the hashtag ‘Me too’ that started in October, 2017. Based on arguments drawn from MacKinnon’s work, I will argue in a second move that the radical feminist claim according to which sexual violence is mainly caused by an imbalance of power between the two genders is right. The arguments I put forward support the strong and radical belief that sexual abuse of women is not sheer individual pathology, but a consequence of the fact that men generally enjoy a dominant position in society encouraging them to objectify women.

 

Emilian Mihailov   -PHILOSOPHY--------

University of Bucharest

Complexitatea judecării morale: limitele abordărilor procedurale și tipuri de contexte / The complexity of moral decision making: limits of procedural approaches and types of contexts
Keywords: moral judgement; complexity; types of context; method; procedure;

How do we make good moral decisions? There is a tendency to answer this question by developing methods and procedures of moral decision making. In this paper I will show some limits and pitfalls of this approach. Good moral decisions need to take into account factors which cannot be codified into procedures. I draw attention to how analyzing the type of context is a necessary preamble for a better handling of procedures.

 

James Cargile   -PHILOSOPHY--------

Virginia University

Pantheism
Keywords: pantheism; panentheism; universal set; mereological whole; worship;

Pantheism faces two main difficulties. First, making a logically secure identification of a whole or totality of all things. The ex-istence of a universal set is challenged by Cantor’s Paradox. The existence of one mereological whole of space is challenged by the possibility of distinct spaces with no spatial connection. Second, given a whole, there is the question whether it qualifies as God. The identification calls for showing the whole has features taken to be distinctive of God, such as being omnipotent, omniscient, the source of everything, and most of all, most worthy of worship. I argue that pantheism cannot overcome these difficulties and that traditional theism has a rational core which can.

Vol. 1 (2016), Issue 1

Vol. 1 (2016), Issue 1

ORIGINAL ARTICLES

 

Teodor Dima   -PHILOSOPHY--------

„Gheorghe Zane” Institute of Economic and Social Research

Strategii euristice / Heuristic Strategies
Keywords: heuristic strategies, assimilation, inspiration, theoretical construction, Principia Mathematica

This article presents the steps of a heuristic strategy: 1) preliminary preparation (assimilation, penetration, information gathering through different universal procedures, such as: studying, reading, travels, discussions, observations, etc.); 2) inspiration (working and/or scientific hypotheses, proposing new concepts, definitions, comparisons, experiences, motivations, demonstrations); 3) decantation (calculate, make use of inferences and of logical and methodological procedures); 4) composition or construction (synthesis, inspiration, imagination, analogies, criticism, self-criticism, final conclusions, elaboration of treatises and/or theories etc.). We show that discovery and invention include elements of logic, mathematics, methodology, psychology, favorable events, etc. We distinguished two heuristic strategies drawing on Max Plank’s construction of quantum physics and on Bertrand Russell’s and A.N. Whitehead’s transformation of logic into a formal system.

 

Iovan Marțian   -LAW---------------------

„Vasile Goldiş” Western University of Arad

The Problem of Truth in Prescriptive Statements
Keywords: imperative statements, legal texts, truth, demonstration, justice

This article argues the need to address the law, that is, the legal prescriptions, with reference to alethic criteria. Even though they have an imperative meaning, legal norms and prescriptive sentences cannot elude the problem of truth. Legal norms generally emerge from certain knowledge and real experience, which are embedded in laws and in the way in which legal texts are written. The rationale undertaken by the author converges into demonstrating that the aim of carrying out justice and the functioning of the legal system in a society are unconditionally reliant on finding the truth. These aims are the result of coherent, true, necessary, and sufficient knowledge.

 

Lavinia Andreea Bejan   -LAW---------------------

Romanian Academy, Iași Branch

Extinderea aplicării Convenției Europene a Drepturilor Omului în chestiuni privitoare la azil: Protecția prin ricoșeu / Extending the Application of the European Convention on Human Rights Regarding Asylum: Protection ‘par ricochet’
Keywords: the European Convention on Human Rights, the European Court of Human Rights, the right to asylum, protection par ricochet

The so-called ‘refugee crisis’ caused multiple discussions regarding the European Union, its ability to react, legislative flaws, belated or insufficient institutional reactions, as well as the existence and nature of some specific obligations assumed by the member states or imposed on them. In this context, the status of EU members as states party to the European Convention on Human Rights deserves a careful consideration. The European Convention on Human Rights does not contain a separate article regarding asylum or the refugee status, a ‘right to asylum’. However, as early as 1989 the Strasbourg Court extended its competence over certain matters regarding asylum and asylum seekers beyond its forms of direct protection, which couldn’t have interfered with a state’s right to decide on returning an individual in a third state. The Court thus granted protection to aliens when states party decide to return by deportation, expulsion, or extradition an individual in a third state in which he risks grave violations of human rights as recognized by the Convention. This paper provides an overview of this particular type of protection, referred to in the doctrine as ‘protection par ricochet.’ We analyze some of the main decisions of the European Court of Human Rights, as well as the effects of these decisions on the states member of both the European Union and the ECHR.

 

Ana Maria Hojbotă   -PSYCHOLOGY-------

Romanian Academy, Iași Branch

Implicit Theories of Moral Character: Effects on Moral Evaluation and Distributive Preferences in Dictator Game
Keywords: implicit theories of moral character, prosecutor mindset, culpability, moral evaluation, allocation decisions, dictator game

Previous research documented the effect of beliefs about social order and immutability of moral character on moral evaluation. These beliefs amplify the orientation towards severe moral judg-ments, with a preference for retribution instead of rehabilitation. In the present study, we aimed to check for interactive effects of these beliefs on punishment and distributive preferences. We investigate whether social cynicism plays a role in this relation, since trust in institutions and people is a factor that may bias people’s definition of what is fair and what is not. We found that beliefs about the immutability of moral character accentuate the prosecutor mindset and generate greater attribution of blame.

 

Eugen Huzum   -PHILOSOPHY--------

„Gheorghe Zane” Institute of Economic and Social Research

Realismul în filosofia politică: un moralism deghizat / Realism in Political Philosophy: Moralism in Disguise
Keywords: moralism, realism, political philosophy, moral values and principles, political legitimacy, politics, domination

The paper is an intervention in the dispute about the moralism of the recent realist trend in political philosophy. It is particularly focused on analysing the debate on this subject between Niklas Erman and Eva Möller (2015a; 2015b) and Robert Jubb and Enzo Rossi (2015a; 2015b). Examining the main arguments of both parties, I argue that realists (i.e., Jubb and Rossi) lost the debate, that realism is, in fact, moralism in disguise, and that its main methodological request – giving up „pre-political” moral principles and values in political philosophy – is „unrealistic” (i.e., unfeasible).

 

Emanuel Copilaș   -POLITICAL SCIENCE--------

The West University of Timișoara

Inegalități economice și sociale în Uniunea Europeană: o perspectivă de ansamblu / Economic and Social Inequalities in the European Union: A General View
Keywords: convergence, divergence, integration, cohesion policy, threats

The European Union is, no doubt, at a major political crossroad. Inequalities among its regions and member states are still alarmingly high, despite the considerable efforts made through cohesion policy to reduce them. The immigration crisis amplifies these inequalities, also generating major political outcomes, like Great Britain’s decision to renounce its EU membership. This article offers a general perspective over the European project starting from the premise that the EU’s growing economic coherence is not doubled by the same level of political coherence. The future of the EU itself depends on elaborating, as quickly as possible, a much needed political form and thus making it able to tackle more successfully the whole set of challenges that lies ahead.