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The Dark Side of Knowledge

Histories of Ignorance, 1400 to 1800


Cornel Zwierlein

How can one study the absence of knowledge, the voids, the conscious and unconscious unknowns through history? Investigations into late medieval and early modern practices of measuring, of risk calculation, of ignorance within financial administrations, of conceiving the docta ignorantia as well as the silence of the illiterate are combined with contributions regarding knowledge gaps within identification procedures and political decision-making, with the emergence of consciously delimited blanks on geographical maps, with ignorance as a factor embedded in iconographic programs, in translation processes and the semantic potentials of reading. Based on thorough archival analysis, these selected contributions from conferences at Harvard and Paris are tightly framed by new theoretical elaborations that have implications beyond these cases and epochal focus.

Contributors: Giovanni Ceccarelli, Taylor Cowdery, Lucile Haguet, John T. Hamilton, Lucian Hölscher, Moritz Isenmann, Adam J. Kosto, Marie-Laure Legay, Andrew McKenzie-McHarg, Fabrice Micallef, William T. O´Reilly, Eleonora Rohland, Mathias Schmoeckel, Daniel L. Smail, Govind P. Sreenivasan, and Cornel Zwierlein.

Harald Thorsrud

, is “not to be resolved in a solution but … maintained by fidelity to the Socratic balance between knowing and doubting” (67). Apparently, by “solution” Nicgorski means a rational account or theory that is articulated and defended, or at least defensible. It is somewhat less clear what he means by the

Raphael Woolf

extricate us from the chaos. Taking refuge in the latter sort of stance is, after all, hardly an unfamiliar reflex in times of crisis. C does seem implicitly to be aware of the difficulty. His final verdict is that “the Academica represents the fine balancing act between an expression of private despair

Charles Raff

things. To fulfill his announced aim for the performance of Moore’s proof, Moore performed a proof that concludes there are external things from premises that do not suffice to imply that there is knowledge of external things or that skepticism is false about external things. The balance of Moore’s 1939

Majid Davoody Beni

may be objected that the moderate embodied construal of pem would not be significantly different to Hohwy’s theory (at least to the extent that the question of realism is at issue). For, even Hohwy’s construal could be understood as an attempt at striking a balance between the extremes of orthodox

Hiding Between Basho and Chōra

Re-imagining and Re-placing the Elemental

Brian Schroeder

emphasis on the principles of unity and balance from a holistic and organic standpoint. This has implications for the way that causality is conceived in the external environing world and for understanding internal life-movements. Arriving at this realization of balance and unity necessitates turning away

Ockham's Assumption of Mental Speech

Thinking in a World of Particulars


Sonja Schierbaum

In Ockham’s Assumption of Mental Speech: Thinking in a World of Particulars, Sonja Schierbaum advances a detailed philosophical reconstruction of William Ockham’s (1287-1349) conception of mental speech. Ockham’s conception provides a rich account of cognition and semantics that binds together various philosophical issues and forms a point of departure for many later and even contemporary debates. The book analyses the role of mental speech for the semantics and the use of linguistic expressions as well as its function within Ockham’s cognitive theory and epistemology. Carefully balancing Ockham’s position against contemporary appropriations in the light of Fodor’s LOTH, it allows us to understand better Ockham’s view on human thought and its relation to language.

A. Leland Morton

as an overly naturalistic reading of Hume. In Hume’s Skeptical Crisis , Fogelin seeks to balance the equation by giving some well-deserved attention to Hume’s positive program—the development of a “science of man.” The central thesis of the book is that it is precisely this latter element of Hume

Scott Aikin and Alyssa Lowery

balance reasons to think skeptical theism is true), we have defeaters for thinking that there are no God-justifying reasons for horrendous evils. Given what we know about our intellectual weakness and the vastness of the world’s complexity, the fact that it seems there is no justifying reason for evils

Harald Thorsrud

pitch for the liberal arts, however, Cicero’s view is no crass pragmatism—he does not, for example, reduce the notion of justification to what works even if philosophical theorizing must be somehow constrained by facts about real human beings. The emphasis is rather on striking a balance between