The aim of this paper is to examine Hobbesʼs social contract theory from the viewpoint of the moral theory. Hobbes, who was under the influence of skeptical relativism, used the contract theory to provide foundations for common ethical standards. The notion of the social contract expresses the liberalistic idea that all rules are made by those who are free and equal. But his social contract theory based on liberalism leads to a commonwealth, which forces people to be passively obedient, and issues paradoxically in illiberal politics. By focusing on a mystery of this paradox, I would like to bring the characteristic of his social contract theory into relief and clarify the merits and demerits of that as the moral theory.
In his discussion of personal identity, Locke uses “consciousness” in three ways. “Consciousness” means “self-consciousness,” “memory” and “the appropriation of past thoughts and actions.” This multiple meaning of “consciousness” makes it difficult to get the clear understanding of his consciousness theory of personal identity. This paper is an attempt to show; firstly, that the principal meaning of “consciousness” is “self-consciousness” in that it does not only accompanies present perceptions but also constitutes memory; secondly, that it is the consciousness as memory that what Locke says appropriates past actions. Through this attempt, it becomes possible to distinguish the central and theoretical part from the marginal and practical part in Lockeʼs theory of personal identity.
On Humeʼs account, the scope of the natural virtues(generosity or humanity) is limited to a personʼs family and friends(“narrow circle”). Elsewhere, however, Hume admits that the scope of the natural virtues extends beyond the “narrow circle” to strangers. How, then, does the scope of the natural virtues extend beyond the “narrow circle”? In this paper, I will inquire what expands the scope of the natural virtues, and argue that the scope of the natural virtues is expanded because not only of the principle of sympathy, but also of the “society” and “conversation” in which the humanity of a person is increased and cultivated.
In this study, the writer has attempted to clarify the characteristics of Royal Humane Society (RHS), the first association for life-saving and suicide prevention in England, analyzing theories of its founders and endeavors. The debate on suicide was much heater than elsewhere in early modern England, and the verdict “non compos mentis” has been increased. In this stream, RHS was founded by two medical men. Doctors and priests cooperated to prevent suicide in RHS, where the key conceptions of their theories were ʻself-loveʼ, ʻbenevolenceʼ and ʻcompassionʼ. They insisted ʻthe patientsʼ who attempted suicide need medical care and emphasized the importance of education that control passions.
Popperʼs analysis of the conceptual problems of quantum mechanics and the propensity interpretation of probability are reviewed. Although these theories do not prove to be sufficient in resolving issues with regard to quantum mechanics, there exists a modern theory, stochastic mechanics, that validates Popperʼs framework. Two aspects of his idea in particular, are essential for stochastic mechanics to explain quantum mechanics without any conceptual confusion. One is that a whole experimental arrangement determines a propensity field. The other is that propensity is objective and is qualified to be considered as a physical entity. This relationship between Popperʼs philosophy and stochastic mechanics is illustrated with an example of the double-slit experiment, wherein Popperʼs theory is proved.
In her influential paper ʻThe First Personʼ, Elizabeth Anscombe concludes that , despite all syntactic and semantic appearances to the contrary, the first person singular pronoun is not a referring expression. She presents three main arguments. One is the argument intended to show that any account of ʻIʼ as a device of selfreference will either be insufficient or essentially involve circularity. The other two attempt to establish directly that ʻIʼ is not a device of reference. The aim of this paper is to show that all these arguments are mistaken.We should regard ʻIʼ as a referring expression and explain its reference by the ordinary token-reflexive rule or other similar ones.