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On April 6, 1922, in Paris, Albert Einstein and Henri Bergson publicly debated the nature of time. Einstein considered Bergson's theory of time to be a soft, psychological notion, irreconcilable with the quantitative realities of physics. Bergson, who gained fame as a philosopher by arguing that time should not be understood exclusively through the lens of science, criticized Einstein's theory of time for being a metaphysics grafted on to science, one that ignored the intuitive aspects of time. The Physicist and the Philosopher tells the remarkable story of how this explosive debate transformed our understanding of time and drove a rift between science and the humanities that persists today. Jimena Canales introduces readers to the revolutionary ideas of Einstein and Bergson, describes how they dramatically collided in Paris, and traces how this clash of worldviews reverberated across the twentieth century. She shows how it provoked responses from figures such as Bertrand Russell and Martin Heidegger, and carried repercussions for American pragmatism, logical positivism, phenomenology, and quantum mechanics. Canales explains how the new technologies of the period—such as wristwatches, radio, and film—helped to shape people’s conceptions of time and further polarized the public debate. She also discusses how Bergson and Einstein, toward the end of their lives, each reflected on his rival’s legacy—Bergson during the Nazi occupation of Paris and Einstein in the context of the first hydrogen bomb explosion. The Physicist and the Philosopher is a magisterial and revealing account that shows how scientific truth was placed on trial in a divided century marked by a new sense of time.
Argues that a pluralistic understanding of truth can foster productive conversations about common concerns involving religion, science, ethics, politics, economics, and ecology without falling into relativism. In this book, Donald A. Crosby defends the idea that all claims to truth are at best partial. Recognizing this, he argues, is a necessary safeguard against arrogance, close-mindedness, and potentially violent reactions to differences of outlook and practice. Crosby demonstrates how “partial truths” are inevitably at work in conversations and debates about religion, science, morality, economics, ecology, and social and political progress. He then focuses on the concept in the discipline of philosophy, looking at a number of distinctions that are taken to be strictly binary—those between fact and value, continuity and novelty, rationalism and empiricism, mind and body, and good and evil—and demonstrates how in all of these cases, each on its own can offer only an incomplete picture. Partial Truths and Our Common Future invites ongoing dialogue with others for the sake of mutual enlargements of understanding rather than mere civility, and provides incentive for continuing open-minded and shared inquiries into the important issues of life. “This is a transdisciplinary philosophical work that moves with grace across traditions, time periods, and thinkers. It is a master class in the existential and public relevance of philosophy and a rare example of a book that is both timely and timeless.” — Michael S. Hogue, author of The Promise of Religious Naturalism
Explores miracles as dimensions of everyday existence through the lens of religious naturalism. Miracles are usually regarded as an intrusion of a supernatural force upsetting the normal workings and laws of the universe, but if one is attentive to the natural world, one can instead find miracles beneath the surface of everyday existence. This outlook is part of Donald A. Crosby’s religious naturalism, which he terms Religion of Nature, a belief system that posits the natural world to be the only world, without any underlying or transcending supernatural being, presence, or power. In The Extraordinary in the Ordinary, Crosby explores seven types of everyday miracles, such as time, language, and love, to show that the miraculous and ordinary are not opposed to each other. Rather, it is when we acknowledge the sacred depths and dimensions of everyday existence that we recognize the miracles that constantly surround us.
This broad and insightful book presents current scholarship in important subfields of philosophy of science and addresses an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary readership. It groups carefully selected contributions into the four fields of I) philosophy of physics, II) philosophy of life sciences, III) philosophy of social sciences and values in science, and IV) philosophy of mathematics and formal modeling. Readers will discover research papers by Paul Hoyningen-Huene, Keizo Matsubara, Kian Salimkhani, Andrea Reichenberger, Anne Sophie Meincke, Javier Suárez, Roger Deulofeu, Ludger Jansen, Peter Hucklenbroich, Martin Carrier, Elizaveta Kostrova, Lara Huber, Jens Harbecke, Antonio Piccolomini d’Aragona and Axel Gelfert. This collection fosters dialogue between philosophers of science working in different subfields, and brings readers the finest and latest work across the breadth of the field, illustrating that contemporary philosophy of science has successfully broadened its scope of reflection. It will interest and inspire a wide audience of philosophers as well as scholars of the natural sciences, social sciences and the humanities. The volume shares selected contributions from the prestigious second triennial conference of the German Society for Philosophy of Science/ Gesellschaft für Wissenschaftsphilosophie (GWP.2016, March 8, 2016 – March 11, 2016).
This volume trace ways in which time is represented in reverse forms throughout modernist culture, from the beginning of the twentieth century until the decade after World War II. Though modernism is often associated with revolutionary or futurist directions, this book argues instead that a retrograde dimension is embedded within it. By juxtaposing the literature of Europe and North America with that of Australia and New Zealand, it suggests how this antipodean context serves to defamiliarize and reconceptualize normative modernist understandings of temporal progression. Backgazing thus moves beyond the treatment of a specific geographical periphery as another margin on the expanding field of 'New Modernist Studies'. Instead, it offers a systematic investigation of the transformative effect of retrograde dimensions on our understanding of canonical modernist texts. The title, 'backgazing', is taken from Australian poet Robert G. FitzGerald's 1938 poem 'Essay on Memory', and it epitomizes how the cultural history of modernism can be restructured according to a radically different discursive map. Backgazing intellectually reconfigures US and European modernism within a planetary orbit in which the literature of Australia and the Southern Hemisphere, far from being merely an annexed margin, can be seen substantively to change the directional compass of modernism more generally. By reading canonical modernists such as James Joyce and T. S. Eliot alongside marginalized writers such as Nancy Cunard and others and relatively neglected authors from Australia and New Zealand, this book offers a revisionist cultural history of modernist time, one framed by a recognition of how its measurement is modulated across geographical space.

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