The main concern of the article is the ways plague was explored and conceptualised by Russian doctors in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Medical theories and epistemologies are accessed in comparison with those employed during the pre-bacteriological era as well as with the European medical ideas of the period.
Pavel V. Sokolov’s “Lucis an caliginis theatrum: Theatrical Metaphors in the Early Modern historia literaria” is another one of those essays in this volume which remind readers of the frequently forgotten fact that the metaphor at issue here is present in non-theatrical texts also. Sokolov makes the striking observation that there is an intense discussion of the problem of plagiarism in an age without copyright regulations. The intricacies involved in the question of what is an “original” and what is a (perhaps plagiarized) “copy” were highlighted in contemporary treatises by drawing on the resources offered by theatrical metaphors, especially on one specific semantic strand inherent to this metaphorical complex, namely, the difficulty to decide between what is “real” action and what is (only) an imitation of real action.
L’ouvrage d’Adrian Mackenzie, professeur au Département de sociologie à l’Université de Lancaster, est d’un genre inédit au sein de la littérature émergente, mais encore peu étendue en sciences humaines et sociales, qui explore le fonctionnement du machine learning (ML). Les avancées spectaculaires de cette branche de l’intelligence artificielle (IA) depuis quelques années ont éclipsé les autres approches en la matière et ont soudainement transformé l’IA en un problème social et politique. Plusieurs auteurs ont déjà insisté sur la nécessité de focaliser le regard sur les outils de l’IA, en pointant les limites des travaux qui ne traitent que des effets sociaux des « algorithmes ». Comme le fait remarquer l’anthropologue des sciences et des techniques Nick Seaver, la plupart des travaux sur le sujet s’agitent au sujet des « algorithmes » ou le « big data », en insistant sur leurs effets néfastes, voire catastrophiques, pour la société sans jamais préciser exactement ce qu’ils sont. Le transfert des connaissances et des perspectives entre les spécialistes en IA et en SHS (d’ailleurs dans les deux sens) est pourtant indispensable pour en proposer une critique informée et efficace.
Republican types are understood here as a project of state order that implied seizing political power from a monarch and giving it to the people by means of a coup—either a peaceful or a military one. It is this circumstance that puts republican models aside from projects of state-initiated reforms intended to liberalize but not replace the monarchical regime. A monarch who granted a constitution to his subjects enhanced their rights and liberties, but he did not change their status, since a granted constitution did not imply discussions and approbation by the people. For example, if a benevolent lord replaced socage with rent payments, he enhanced liberties of his serfs, but they did not become free people because of it. On the other hand, republics could have strict laws that limited rights and liberties of individual citizens, but it was thought that the laws resulted from the will of the people, thus the people as a whole remained free. In the first case, liberty was understood as an act, and in the second—as a status. Unlike constitutional monarchies, which set spatial limits to hereditary power (the private life of the people was supposedly not regulated), republics had temporal limits for elected power, while citizens’ private lives could also be subjected to its control. Titus Livy spoke of a change from a monarchy to a republican regime and explained that “you may reckon...
Ukrainian science and its terminology in the nineteenth century experienced a number of twists and turns. Divided between two empires, it lacked institutions, scholars pursuing it, and a unified literary language. One could even say that until the late nineteenth century there was a possibility for two communities with two literary languages to emerge - Ruthenian (Habsburg Empire) and Ukrainian (Russian Empire). Eventually, both communities and languages merged. This article tracks the meanderings of this process, arguing that scholarly publications played a crucial role in shaping the standard for the scientific language. The article follows the biography of the naturalist Ivan Verhrats'kyi (1846-1919), the author of the first dictionaries of naturalist terminology in Ruthenian in 1860, a translator and author of textbooks, and the head of the Mathematical-Naturalist-Medical Section of the Shevchenko Society in L'viv. He thus shaped many Ruthenian, and then Ruthenian-Ukrainian scholarly projects. Initially successful with his approach to making the Ruthenian scientific language vernacular, in the 1890s his approach was losing ground to the internationalization of vocabulary and to the growing pressure toward the unification of Ruthenian and Ukrainian. Finally, in the beginning of the twentieth century, Verhrats'kyi became marginalized within the Ukrainian scholarly community. By discussing the history of a minority language within imperial structures, I argue that the media in which scholarly work was published requires special attention. In the Ruthenin-Ukrainian case, they determined the standard for scientific language. Lacking professional journals, Ruthenian scholars published in the 1860s-late 1880s in popular newspapers and in school textbooks, requiring them to use a language that was near to the spoken tongue of the Habsburg province. Once the political situation changed, favoring Ruthenian-Ukrainian unification, and scholarly journals appeared and transgressed the imperial boundary, the favored language had to be transimperial, ousting out the vernacular.
This essay deals with an important chapter in the instrumentalization of “spectacularity” that is situated several decades before the humanist “Renaissance” of theater. Focusing on Enea Silvio Bartolomeo Piccolomini, who acceded to the papacy under the name of Pius II (1458–1464), the essay examines the “theatrical” restructuring of Piccolomini’s place of birth, Corsignano, renamed Pienza by the Pope himself. The numerous buildings (churches, palaces, public places) that the Pope had erected in his hometown are meant to metaphorically represent his self-image as a human being elected by God with a view to leading profane and sacred history to an apogee never seen before. This self-stylization via the “stage” of the town of Pienza is corroborated, as Ivanova shows, by Pius’s textual self-interpretation in his Commentarii rerum memorabilium quae temporibus suis contingerunt (1463).
Les percées récentes de « l’apprentissage profond » (deep learning) favorisées par les investissements des géants du numérique transnationaux ont contribué, dans la seconde moitié des années 2010, à faire passer l’intelligence artificielle (IA) du statut d’objet de science-fiction à celui de problème public. L’ensemble des techniques, des architectures et des algorithmes, connu sous ce nom, semble enfin réaliser les promesses de « la vieille IA » (faites à partir de la fin des années cinquante) d’apprendre aux machines des tâches telles que les jeux d’échecs, la reconnaissance de l’image et de la parole, la traduction et la gestion de l’information – objets de référence de l’IA, mais a aussi rendu possible de nouvelles applications telles que la prédiction comportementale et la data analyticscomme outil d’extraction des connaissances quasi-universel. Ces avancées techniques (et surtout ce qu’elles promettent à l’avenir) sont actuellement très prisées par des entreprises privées les plus diverses et par des gouvernements comme un enjeu majeur dans la concurrence internationale pour le pouvoir économique et politique.
The paper is an attempt to demonstrate that theatrical metaphor plays a paradigmatic role in the philosophy of Schelling, from the very beginning up to the latest versions of his metaphysics. The image of theatrical play serves, in Schelling, as the main pattern for the conceptualization of every process in which freedom and necessity are mediated through each other – of thinking as such, of the World history as a whole, of the very genesis of the world, and of the history of the human consciousness.
Starting from the Age of Enlightenment, a person’s ability of self-improvement, or perfectibility, is usually seen as a fundamental human feature. However, this term, introduced into the philosophical vocabulary by J.-J. Rousseau, gradually acquired additional meaning – largely due to the works of N. de Condorcet, T. Malthus and C. Darwin. Owing to perfectibility, human beings are not only able to work on themselves: by improving their abilities, they are also able to change their environment (both social and natural) and create favorable conditions for their existence. It is no coincidence that perfectibility became the key concept of the Idea of Social Progress proposed by French thinkers in the Age of Enlightenment, despite the fact that later it was criticized, above all, by English authors, who justi ed its organic and biological nature and gave a different evolutionary interpretation to this concept, without excluding perfectibility from the philosophical vocabulary. In this article, we address the opposition and mutual counterargu- ments of these two positions. Beyond that, we draw a parallel with some of the ideas of S. Kapitsa, who proved to be not only a critic of Malthusianism but also a direct disciple of Condorcet. In the modern age, the ideas of human self-improvement caused the development of transhumanist movement. Condorcet is more relevant than ever, and today his theory of the progress of the human mind, which in uenced the genesis of modern historical science, needs a rethinking in the newest perspective of improving the mental and physical human nature with the help of modern technologies.
Between 1907 and 1911, Imperial Austria experienced two major controversies concerning entanglements of science and religion. In 1907, the Innsbruck specialist in church law, Ludwig Wahrmund, publicly criticized the new ‘antimodernist’ and antiscientific trends of Catholic science, causing semester-long protests, fights, university closures and heated parliamentary debates. Antagonized in Innsbruck, Wahrmund relocated to Prague. The controversy triggered by his work, however, united students from across the monarchy in Wahrmund’s defence. In 1910, an analogous conflict arose in Cracow after Kazimierz Zimmermann was appointed professor of Catholic sociology. This time the protest against his teachings, although intensive, transgressed Galician boundaries only to a limited extent, failing to mobilize progressive student groups to go on the streets outside of the province. This article analyses the difference between protests against Wahrmund and Zimmermann from a spatial perspective. The author argues that the way both conflicts were received in politics and in local university cities indicates that there was an Imperial Austrian public sphere that transgressed national boundaries and linguistic divisions. Conflicts over contested topics, like the long-heated relationship between Church, science and higher education, were charged events that brought this public sphere to the fore. This translingual, imperial public sphere remained, however, hierarchically structured. A conflict in Innsbruck had more weight than one in Cracow, both within political discussions and in local presses.
If we imagine that a society in its development moves towards a pre-selected point or a predictable visualization, then any part of the path that lies behind will be deemed incomplete and merely preparatory. What if this stretch is far from straight? Then the zigzagging path will seem deflected from the desired goal by concessions, reactionary advances, weak will or bad planning. Both personal wishes and historical evidence may push a historian of Alexandrine Russia to accept such logic of historical narrative and take the path of judgmental reasoning. The ideologues of Nicholas I’s reign – that is to say, everyone who set up its tasks and interests in the social sphere – indicated a breakaway from the previous practice of public administration.
The edited book contains selected articles that were presented at the conference "Welt and Wissenschaft" at the National Research University Higher School of Economics in Moscow 2018, April 19.
The paper examines in some detail Ficino’s relation to the concept of λόγοι σπερματικοί, literally ‘seminal reasons’, discussed in his Ancient and Christian sources. The concept was used metaphysically to indicate the links between species in matter and ideas in mind but its connotations made it useful for embryological discussion. Ficino supposes that the World Soul producing specific forms and powers of lower things makes them through her own seminal reasons, which remain in touchwith celestial and supercelestial entities. It is probably Plotinus who legitimates Ficino’s use of the concept of seminal reasons, although historically, it is a concept of Stoicism. Employing ‘seeds’ as a metaphor for ideas, Plotinus strongly criticizes the Stoic concept of seminal reasons, according to which seminal formative principles are corporeal and immanent to the things. Ficino’s use of embryological metaphors and direct analogies between the action of generating force in the human body and inthe ‘body’ of the world serves to explain how a purely intelligible essence (the World Soul) produces material things. However, Plotinus, in contrast to Ficino, never gives such detailed attention to the discussion of the purely material conditions of conception, such as the combination of moisture and heat. Peripathetic natural philosophyand the natural philosophy of Proclus provide a more adequate background for the medical and astrological reasoning in some parts of Ficino’s De vita. In the paper, I arguethat the ‘seminal reasons’ as metaphysical intermediaries should be related to other well-known metaphysical intermediaries in Ficino’s philosophy (spiritus, vis, virtus).
The aim of the article is to reveal new concepts and models, systems of argumentation, rethinking of main categories, orientation to new social disciplines and self-reflection in different directions of the world history in the 21st century.
In the 1990s world history relying on the achievements of global and postcolonial studies has been radically transformed and, after several decades of existence in the backyards of historical science, has regained its leading position. Studies conducted in the framework of world history have established new directions that are the result of critical and postmodern revolutions in philosophy (postcolonial criticism, first of all) and rely on a number of concepts and approaches developed in the course of anthropological, linguistic and cultural twists and turns.
Firstly, we mean global and transnational history, offering ways to construct a universal non-Eurocentric world. Secondly, world history, analyzing interactions between world systems and local civilizations (cultural transfer), and complex networks of mutual influences of various historical phenomena. Third, the international history of the formation and development of various international institutions. Fourth, the Big history, which claims not only to encompass "the whole world", but also "all the time", that is, a time beyond the social - "time of the Earth."
The attention of historians is switched to the study of social trajectories, cultural exchanges, multiple identities; there is a fundamental rejection of dualistic oppositions (Europe / third world, metropoly / colony, center / periphery, city / village, modernization / tradition). All variants of the "new world history" are alliances of history with different disciplines, up to the attempts at integration with biology, geology, and cosmology.
The next transformation of the historical science in the 2000s and especially in the last decade is unusually favorable precisely for the development of world history. Firstly, it is the renewed need for broad contexts and large narratives. Secondly, the "spatial turn" in the social sciences and in historiography in particular. Thirdly, the awakened interest of historians in the metaphysics of time and the idea of multitemporality.