History

Conscience and Community | ,

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Religious toleration appears near the top of any short list of core liberal democratic values. Theorists from John Locke to John Rawls emphasize important interconnections between the principles of toleration, constitutional government, and the rule of law. Conscience and Community revisits the historical emergence of religious liberty in the Anglo-American tradition, looking deeper than the traditional emergence of toleration to find not a series of self-evident or logically connected expansions but instead a far more complex evolution. Murphy argues that contemporary liberal theorists have misunderstood and misconstrued the actual historical development of toleration in theory and practice. Murphy approaches the concept through three "myths" about religious toleration: that it was opposed only by ignorant, narrow-minded persecutors; that it was achieved by skeptical Enlightenment rationalists; and that tolerationist arguments generalize easily from religion to issues such as gender, race, ethnicity, and sexuality, providing a basis for identity politics..

History

Conscience and Convenience | David J. Rothman

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Conscience and Convenience was quickly recognized for its masterly depiction and interpretation of a major period of reform history. This history begins in a social context in which treatment and rehabilitation were emerging as predominant after America's prisons and asylums had been broadly acknowledged to be little more than embarrassing failures. The resulting progressive agenda was evident: to develop new, more humane and effective strategies for the criminal, delinquent, and mentally ill. The results, as Rothman documents, did not turn out as reformers had planned. For adult criminal offenders, such individual treatment could be accomplished only through the provision of broad discretionary authority, whereby choices could be made between probation, parole, indeterminate sentencing, and, as a measure of last resort, incarceration in totally redesigned prisons. For delinquents, the juvenile court served as a surrogate parent and accelerated and intensified individual treatment by providing for a series of community-based individual and family services, with the newly designed, school-like reformatories being used for only the most intractable cases. For the mentally ill, psychiatrists chose between outpatient treatments, short-term intensive care, or as last resort, long-term care in mental hospitals with new cottage and family-like arrangements. Rothman shows the consequences of these reforms as unmitigated disasters. Despite benevolent intentions, the actual outcome of reform efforts was to take the earlier failures of prisons and asylums to new, more ominous heights. In this updated edition, Rothman chronicles and examines incarceration of the criminal, the deviant, and the dependent in U.S. society, with a focus on how and why these methods have persisted and expanded for over a century and a half despite longstanding evidence of their failures and abuses..

Political Science

Liberty, Conscience, and Toleration | Andrew R. Murphy

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In a seventeenth-century English landscape populated with towering political and philosophical figures like Hobbes, Harrington, Cromwell, Milton, and Locke, William Penn remains in many ways a man apart. Yet despite being widely neglected by scholars, he was a sophisticated political thinker who contributed mightily to the theory and practice of religious liberty in the early modern Atlantic world. In this long-awaited intellectual biography of William Penn, Andrew R. Murphy presents a nuanced portrait of this remarkable entrepreneur, philosopher, Quaker, and politician. Liberty, Conscience, and Toleration focuses on the major political episodes that attracted William Penn's sustained attention as a political thinker and actor: the controversy over the Second Conventicle Act, the Popish Plot and Exclusion Crisis, the founding and settlement of Pennsylvania, and the contentious reign of James II. Through a careful examination of writings published in the midst of the religious and political conflicts of Restoration and Revolutionary England, Murphy contextualizes the development of Penn's thought in England and America, illuminating the mutual interconnections between Penn's political thought and his colonizing venture in America. An early advocate of representative institutions and religious freedom, William Penn remains a singular figure in the history of liberty of conscience. His political theorizing provides a window into the increasingly vocal, organized, and philosophically sophisticated tolerationist movement that gained strength over the second half of the seventeenth century. Not only did Penn attempt to articulate principles of religious liberty as a Quaker in England, but he actually governed an American polity and experienced firsthand the complex relationship between political theory and political practice. Murphy's insightful analysis shows Penn's ongoing significance to the broader study of Anglo-American political theory and practice, ultimately pointing scholars toward a new way of understanding the enterprise of political theory itself..

Political Science

Conscience and Its Enemies | Robert P. George

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“Many in elite circles yield to the temptation to believe that anyone who disagrees with them is a bigot or a religious fundamentalist. Reason and science, they confidently believe, are on their side. With this book, I aim to expose the emptiness of that belief.” From the introduction: Assaults on religious liberty and traditional morality are growing fiercer. Here, at last, is the counterattack. Showcasing the talents that have made him one of America’s most acclaimed and influential thinkers, Robert P. George explodes the myth that the secular elite represents the voice of reason. In fact, George shows, it is on the elite side of the cultural divide where the prevailing views frequently are nothing but articles of faith. Conscience and Its Enemies reveals the bankruptcy of these too often smugly held orthodoxies while presenting powerfully reasoned arguments for classical virtues..

Philosophy

Conscience: The Origins of Moral Intuition | Patricia Churchland

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How do we determine right from wrong? Conscience illuminates the answer through science and philosophy. In her brilliant work Touching a Nerve, Patricia S. Churchland, the distinguished founder of neurophilosophy, drew from scientific research on the brain to understand its philosophical and ethical implications for identity, consciousness, free will, and memory. In Conscience, she explores how moral systems arise from our physical selves in combination with environmental demands. All social groups have ideals for behavior, even though ethics vary among different cultures and among individuals within each culture. In trying to understand why, Churchland brings together an understanding of the influences of nature and nurture. She looks to evolution to elucidate how, from birth, our brains are configured to form bonds, to cooperate, and to care. She shows how children grow up in society to learn, through repetition and rewards, the norms, values, and behavior that their parents embrace. Conscience delves into scientific studies, particularly the fascinating work on twins, to deepen our understanding of whether people have a predisposition to embrace specific ethical stands. Research on psychopaths illuminates the knowledge about those who abide by no moral system and the explanations science gives for these disturbing individuals. Churchland then turns to philosophy—that of Socrates, Aquinas, and contemporary thinkers like Owen Flanagan—to explore why morality is central to all societies, how it is transmitted through the generations, and why different cultures live by different morals. Her unparalleled ability to join ideas rarely put into dialogue brings light to a subject that speaks to the meaning of being human..

History

Poetry, Consciousness and Community | Christopher Kelen

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The process of poetry has importantly intuitive aspects and poetry embodies an ambivalence towards consciousness and towards those activities of thought in which it is constituted. It was ability to favour doubt over the productions of the rational mind that led Keats to associate poetry with his `negative capability¿. Consciousness is ¿ like poetry ¿ a floating signifier, a term of wide reference, and with a range of implications in the various disciplinary contexts in which it finds currency. Poetry, consciousness and community is about poetry, consciousness and community, about their reflexive relationships in process, and about how these relationships matter to the world today and to worlds to come. This book is interested in the nature of poetic, as opposed to other, thought; it is interested in the critical application of these forms of thought to each others¿ productions, and in how poetic thought might or might not be subject to its own regime. Poetry ¿ as practice of testing the limits of language ¿ entails a reflexive goal: that of understanding the journey in words made possible for, and by, the poem. Poetic meaning and truth are revealed between languages (likewise between genres, between texts, between subjects); it is in this inter-subjective and inter-cultural space that the limits of language (and so of conceivable worlds) are found..

Religion

Conscience | Andrew David Naselli,J. D. Crowley

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There is an increasing number of divisive issues in our world today, all of which require great discernment. Thankfully, God has given each of us a conscience to align our wills with his and help us make wise decisions. Examining all thirty New Testament passages that touch on the conscience, Andrew Naselli and J. D. Crowley help readers get to know their consciences—a largely neglected topic—and engage with other Christians who hold different convictions. Offering guiding principles and answering critical questions about how the conscience works and how to care for it, this book shows how the conscience impacts our approach to church unity, ministry, and more..

Prostitution

A New Conscience and an Ancient Evil | Jane Addams

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Social Science

Émile Durkheim and the Collective Consciousness of Society | Kenneth Smith

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This volume sets out to explore the use of Émile Durkheim’s concept of the ‘collective consciousness of society’, and represents the first ever book-length treatment of this underexplored topic. Operating from both a criminological and sociological perspective, Kenneth Smith argues that Durkheim’s original concept must be sensitively revised and suitably updated for its real relevance to come to the fore. Major adjustments to Durkheim’s concept of the collective consciousness include Smith’s compelling arguments that the model does not apply to everyone equally, and that Durkheim’s concept does not in any way rely on what might be called the disciplinary functions of society..

Social Science

Beautiful Souls | Eyal Press

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On the Swiss border with Austria in 1938, a police captain refuses to enforce a law barring Jewish refugees from entering his country. In the Balkans half a century later, a Serb from the war-blasted city of Vukovar defies his superiors in order to save the lives of Croats. At the height of the Second Intifada, a member of Israel's most elite military unit informs his commander he doesn't want to serve in the occupied territories. Fifty years after Hannah Arendt examined the dynamics of conformity in her seminal account of the Eichmann trial, Beautiful Souls explores the flipside of the banality of evil, mapping out what impels ordinary people to defy the sway of authority and convention. Through the dramatic stories of unlikely resisters who feel the flicker of conscience when thrust into morally compromising situations, Eyal Press shows that the boldest acts of dissent are often carried out not by radicals seeking to overthrow the system but by true believers who cling with unusual fierceness to their convictions. Drawing on groundbreaking research by moral psychologists and neuroscientists, Beautiful Souls culminates with the story of a financial industry whistleblower who loses her job after refusing to sell a toxic product she rightly suspects is being misleadingly advertised. At a time of economic calamity and political unrest, this deeply reported work of narrative journalism examines the choices and dilemmas we all face when our principles collide with the loyalties we harbor and the duties we are expected to fulfill..

Political Science

The Conscience of a Liberal | Paul Krugman

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"The most consistent and courageous—and unapologetic—liberal partisan in American journalism." —Michael Tomasky, New York Review of Books In this "clear, provocative" (Boston Globe) New York Times bestseller, Paul Krugman, today's most widely read economist, examines the past eighty years of American history, from the reforms that tamed the harsh inequality of the Gilded Age and the 1920s to the unraveling of that achievement and the reemergence of immense economic and political inequality since the 1970s. Seeking to understand both what happened to middle-class America and what it will take to achieve a "new New Deal," Krugman has created his finest book to date, a "stimulating manifesto" offering "a compelling historical defense of liberalism and a clarion call for Americans to retake control of their economic destiny" (Publishers Weekly). "As Democrats seek a rationale not merely for returning to power, but for fundamentally changing—or changing back—the relationship between America's government and its citizens, Mr. Krugman's arguments will prove vital in the months and years ahead." —Peter Beinart, New York Times.

Fiction

Conscience: A Novel | Alice Mattison

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Acclaimed author Alice Mattison’s new novel explores the hard choices a young woman and her friends made decades earlier at the height of the Vietnam War. Decades ago in Brooklyn, three girls demonstrated against the Vietnam War, and each followed a distinct path into adulthood. Helen became a violent revolutionary. Val wrote a controversial book, Bright Morning of Pain, which was essentially a novelization of Helen’s all-too-short but vibrant life. And Olive became an editor and writer, now comfortably settled with her husband, Griff, in modern-day New Haven. When Olive is asked to write an essay about Val’s book, a work that attracts and repulses her in equal measure, doing so brings back to the forefront Olive and Griff’s tangled histories and their complicated reflections on that tumultuous time in their young lives. Things only become more fraught when Griff borrows Olive’s treasured first edition of the novel—and loses it. Then Griff’s quirky and audacious new colleague, Jean Argos, finds the book and begins reading it, setting off a series of events that will introduce new conflicts, tragedies, and friendships into the precarious balance of Olive and Griff’s once stable home. Conscience, the dazzling new novel from award-winning author Alice Mattison, paints the nuanced relationships between the palpable personalities of Olive, Griff, and Jean with her signature wit and precision. And as Mattison explores the ways in which women make a difference—for good or ill—in the world, she elegantly weaves together the past and the present, and the political and the personal..

Philosophy

Ethics for A-Level | Mark Dimmock,Andrew Fisher

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What does pleasure have to do with morality? What role, if any, should intuition have in the formation of moral theory? If something is ‘simulated’, can it be immoral? This accessible and wide-ranging textbook explores these questions and many more. Key ideas in the fields of normative ethics, metaethics and applied ethics are explained rigorously and systematically, with a vivid writing style that enlivens the topics with energy and wit. Individual theories are discussed in detail in the first part of the book, before these positions are applied to a wide range of contemporary situations including business ethics, sexual ethics, and the acceptability of eating animals. A wealth of real-life examples, set out with depth and care, illuminate the complexities of different ethical approaches while conveying their modern-day relevance. This concise and highly engaging resource is tailored to the Ethics components of AQA Philosophy and OCR Religious Studies, with a clear and practical layout that includes end-of-chapter summaries, key terms, and common mistakes to avoid. It should also be of practical use for those teaching Philosophy as part of the International Baccalaureate. Ethics for A-Level is of particular value to students and teachers, but Fisher and Dimmock’s precise and scholarly approach will appeal to anyone seeking a rigorous and lively introduction to the challenging subject of ethics. Tailored to the Ethics components of AQA Philosophy and OCR Religious Studies..

Social Science

Amazing Grace | Jonathan Kozol

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The author of Savage Inequalities, a New York Times best-seller, and Rachel and Her Children, winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, tells the stories of a handful of children who have--through the love and support of their families and dedicated community leaders--not yet lost their battle with the perils of life in America's most hopeless, helpless, and dangerous neighborhoods..

Political Science

The Voice of Conscience | Mika Ojakangas

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In Western thought, it has been persistently assumed that in moral and political matters, people should rely on the inner voice of conscience rather than on external authorities, laws, and regulations. This volume investigates this concept, examining the development of the Western politics of conscience, from Socrates to the present, and the formation of the Western ethico-political subject. The work opens with a discussion of the ambiguous role of conscience in politics, contesting the claim that it is the best defense against totalitarianism. It then look back at canonical authors, from the Church Fathers and Luther to Rousseau and Derrida, to show how the experience of conscience constitutes the foundation of Western ethics and politics. This unique work not only synthesizes philosophical and political insights, but also pays attention to political theology to provide a compelling and innovative argument that the experience of conscience has always been at the core of the political Western tradition. An engaging and accessible text, it will appeal to political theorists and philosophers as well as theologians and those interested in the critique of the Western civilization..

Biography & Autobiography

Blinded by the Right | David Brock

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In a powerful and deeply personal memoir David Brock, the original right-wing scandal reporter, chronicles his rise to the pinnacle of the conservative movement and his painful break with it. David Brock pilloried Anita Hill in a bestseller. His reporting in The American Spectator as part of the infamous “Arkansas Project” triggered the course of events that led to the historic impeachment trial of President Clinton. Brock was at the center of the right-wing dirty tricks operation of the Gingrich era—and a true believer—until he could no longer deny that the political force he was advancing was built on little more than lies, hate, and hypocrisy. In Blinded By the Right, Brock, who came out of the closet at the height of his conservative renown, tells his riveting story from the beginning, giving us the first insider’s view of what Hillary Rodham Clinton called “the vast right-wing conspiracy.” Whether dealing with the right-wing press, the richly endowed think tanks, Republican political operatives, or the Paula Jones case, Brock names names from Clarence Thomas on down, uncovers hidden links, and demonstrates how the Republican Right’s zeal for power created the poisonous political climate that culminated in George W. Bush’s election. With a new afterword by the author, Blinded By the Right is a classic political memoir of our times..

Political Science

Liberty, Conscience, and Toleration | Andrew R. Murphy

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In a seventeenth-century English landscape populated with towering political and philosophical figures like Hobbes, Harrington, Cromwell, Milton, and Locke, William Penn remains in many ways a man apart. Yet despite being widely neglected by scholars, he was a sophisticated political thinker who contributed mightily to the theory and practice of religious liberty in the early modern Atlantic world. In this long-awaited intellectual biography of William Penn, Andrew R. Murphy presents a nuanced portrait of this remarkable entrepreneur, philosopher, Quaker, and politician. Liberty, Conscience, and Toleration focuses on the major political episodes that attracted William Penn's sustained attention as a political thinker and actor: the controversy over the Second Conventicle Act, the Popish Plot and Exclusion Crisis, the founding and settlement of Pennsylvania, and the contentious reign of James II. Through a careful examination of writings published in the midst of the religious and political conflicts of Restoration and Revolutionary England, Murphy contextualizes the development of Penn's thought in England and America, illuminating the mutual interconnections between Penn's political thought and his colonizing venture in America. An early advocate of representative institutions and religious freedom, William Penn remains a singular figure in the history of liberty of conscience. His political theorizing provides a window into the increasingly vocal, organized, and philosophically sophisticated tolerationist movement that gained strength over the second half of the seventeenth century. Not only did Penn attempt to articulate principles of religious liberty as a Quaker in England, but he actually governed an American polity and experienced firsthand the complex relationship between political theory and political practice. Murphy's insightful analysis shows Penn's ongoing significance to the broader study of Anglo-American political theory and practice, ultimately pointing scholars toward a new way of understanding the enterprise of political theory itself..

Political Science

Conservatives Without Conscience | John W. Dean

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On the heels of his national bestseller Worse Than Watergate, John Dean takes a critical look at the current conservative movement In Conservatives Without Conscience, John Dean places the conservative movement's inner circle of leaders in the Republican Party under scrutiny. Dean finds their policies and mind- set to be fundamentally authoritarian, and as such, a danger to democracy. By examining the legacies of such old-line conservatives as J. Edgar Hoover, Spiro Agnew, and Phyllis Schlafly and of such current figures as Dick Cheney, Newt Gingrich, and leaders of the Religious Right, Dean presents an alarming record of abuses of power. His trenchant analysis of how conservatism has lost its bearings serves as a chilling warning and a stirring inspiration to safeguard constitutional principles..

Literary Criticism

Writing Conscience and the Nation in Revolutionary England | Giuseppina Iacona Lobo

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Examining works by well-known figures of the English Revolution, including John Milton, Oliver Cromwell, Margaret Fell Fox, Lucy Hutchinson, Thomas Hobbes, and King Charles I, Giuseppina Iacono Lobo presents the first comprehensive study of conscience during this crucial and turbulent period. Writing Conscience and the Nation in Revolutionary England argues that the discourse of conscience emerged as a means of critiquing, discerning, and ultimately reimagining the nation during the English Revolution. Focusing on the etymology of the term conscience, to know with, this book demonstrates how the idea of a shared knowledge uniquely equips conscience with the potential to forge dynamic connections between the self and nation, a potential only amplified by the surge in conscience writing in the mid-seventeenth-century. Iacono Lobo recovers a larger cultural discourse at the heart of which is a revolution of conscience itself through her readings of poetry, prose, political pamphlets and philosophy, letters, and biography. This revolution of conscience is marked by a distinct and radical connection between conscience and the nation as writers struggle to redefine, reimagine, and even render anew what it means to know with as an English people..

Religion

Beyond Toleration : The Religious Origins of American Pluralism | Chris Beneke Assistant Professor of History Bentley College

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Beyond Toleration : The Religious Origins of American Pluralism - Chris Beneke Assistant Professor of History Bentley College Preview:

At its founding, the United States was one of the most religiously diverse places in the world. Baptists, Methodists, Catholics, Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Quakers, Dutch Reformed, German Reformed, Lutherans, Huguenots, Dunkers, Jews, Moravians, and Mennonites populated the nations towns and villages. Dozens of new denominations would emerge over the succeeding years. What allowed people of so many different faiths to forge a nation together? In this richly told story of ideas, Chris Beneke demonstrates how the United States managed to overcome the religious violence and bigotry that characterized much of early modern Europe and America. The key, Beneke argues, did not lie solely in the protection of religious freedom. Instead, he reveals how American culture was transformed to accommodate the religious differences within it. The expansion of individual rights, the mixing of believers and churches in the same institutions, and the introduction of more civility into public life all played an instrumental role in creating the religious pluralism for which the United States has become renowned. These changes also established important precedents for future civil rights movements in which dignity, as much as equality, would be at stake. Beyond Toleration is the first book to offer a systematic explanation of how early Americans learned to live with differences in matters of the highest importance to them --and how they found a way to articulate these differences civilly. Today when religious conflicts once again pose a grave danger to democratic experiments across the globe, Beneke's book serves as a timely reminder of how one country moved past toleration and towards religious pluralism..