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Patrick S. O'Donnell
Adjunct Instructor, Department of Philosophy, Santa Barbara City College
Interests: philosophy of law and legal theory, philosophy of mind, ethics, political philosophy, philosophy of science, religious worldviews, psychoanalysis, psychology
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Perhaps this post of mine from several years ago is apropos: http://www.religiousleftlaw.com/2011/03/rankings-ad-infinitumad-nauseam.html
While it is introductory in nature and not a work, strictly speaking, of analytical philosophy, but more or less intended for "students" (used in the broadest sense), a book by my late teacher and friend, Ninian Smart, World Philosophies, Oliver Leaman, ed. (Routledge, 2nd ed., 2008; 1st ed., 1999), gives due if not ample recognition to the philosophical dimension of worldviews around the globe. Among the chapters: South Asian philosophies, Chinese philosophies, Korean philosophies, Japanese philosophies, philosophies of Greece, Rome, and the Near East, Islamic philosophies, Jewish philosophies, African philosophies.... As Ninian states in the first edition, "I wrote this work so that general readers could have a clear guide to the philosophies of the world." He further notes his use of "philosophies" in the plural because a number of Western philosophers use the singular only to refer to a particular kind of Western philosophy." Oliver Leaman's* introduction to the second edition reminds us that when it was first published, the book was "variously described as 'a masterpiece of lucid description, analysis, and interpretation,' and 'an encyclopedia of wonders, a treasure store complete with accounts of philosophy and religion from around the world.' Leaman, not given to hyperbole, concludes that "It is all of these things and more." I think this would make a fine title for any undergraduate survey, introductory, or historical course on "Philosophy(ies)." * For those of you who may not know, Leaman is one of our foremost scholars of Islamic philosophy, among other accolades.
For those curious about the relevant literature (in this case, books only, in English) on Indic philosophy, I have a basic bibliography here: https://www.academia.edu/5645257/Indic_or_Indian_Philosophy_A_Basic_Bibliography In the future I hope to categorize it by "schools" (at least where that's possible), but it may still prove useful until such time. As the list is not exhaustive, I apologize to any authors inexplicably excluded (send me a note to rectify). On my academia.edu page I also have a compilation for classical Chinese worldviews chock full of titles for Chinese philosophy although the list includes works outside philosophy proper as well. In my compilation for Islamic Studies, I have works for Islamic philosophy. These two bibliographies have not been recently updated but I should be getting around to that anon.
Wonderful story Stephen, thank you. Those new to this time and place might also enjoy Robert Cohen and Reginald E. Zelnik's The Free Speech Movement: Reflections on Berkeley in the 1960s (University of California Press, 2002). It also contains exquisite photographs!
Toggle Commented Sep 15, 2014 on Free speech at Berkeley? at Legal Ethics Forum
September 11, 2014 Nicholas Dirks, Chancellor University of California – Berkeley Dear Chancellor Dirks, California Scholars for Academic Freedom,* a group of 150 academics committed to academic freedom on university campuses, writes in response to your public message to the UC Berkeley community, titled “Civility and Free Speech” and distributed electronically on September 5. The text is rife with errors, which, coming from a university chancellor, raise serious concerns and prompt this response. [....] See this link for the response: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/19218/civility-codes-contradict-free-speech_letter-to-be
Toggle Commented Sep 14, 2014 on Free speech at Berkeley? at Legal Ethics Forum
Samir, I don't teach a class where this would be possible, but in our course on "world religions" we do discuss the possible reasons one reads and learns from fiction by way of getting students to appreciate why and how religious texts in the form of myths, legends, parables, what have you, in other words, those clearly or not likely "true" (on the order, say, of a descriptive, historical, or scientific 'fact'), can nevertheless speak to us, be meaningful, teach us something about the human condition, etc. This is especially important for more than a few students disposed to dismiss all this "religious stuff" as childish or irrational nonsense (it's possible that some if it might be just that, but I try to get them to see that that's not necessarily the case, to be presumptively open to the possibility that these texts have something of interest if not valuable to say), or for those with fidelity or commitment to a particular religious worldview inclined to view that worldview as possessing a monopoly on the (or absolute) truth.
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On the Facebook page for the group, Union for Radical Political Economics, which I recently joined, I read a wonderful 1930 essay from Keynes: “Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren” (I’m not sure if this title is from Keynes himself). Keynes asks an uncommon question for members of his profession: “What can we reasonably expect the level of our economic life to be a hundred years hence?” I found his reflections on this question (in part II) pleasantly surprising and it prompted me to entertain the possibility that his membership in the Bloomsbury Group speaks in part to why he summoned the intellectual courage to indulge in such speculation, particularly insofar as it takes us beyond (capitalist) economics. It took some daring if only because, in his words, “… [T]here is no country and no people, I think, who can look forward to the age of leisure and of abundance without... Continue reading
Posted Sep 10, 2014 at ReligiousLeftLaw.com
This does not address the larger point of your post but I had to mention how gratifying it is to see mention of the Intifadas in this context among the Palestinians in both the Occupied Territories and inside Israel (in the latter case, especially in the beginning of the Al-Aqsa Intifada). Sometimes forgotten or not sufficiently appreciated in speaking of the use of a wide array of nonviolent methods (I think Gene Sharp’s catalog of ‘three main types’ well captures the number and scope of these) used by Palestinians is the fact that even before the 1936–39 Arab revolt there was roughly a decade of nonviolent protests against British support for establishing a Jewish national home in Palestine (to be sure, these did not always reflect broad-based mass participation but we can cite the general strike in 1925 in protest of Lord Balfour’s trip to the Holy Land in April 1925 and the March of Arab Women protesting General Allenby’s visit to Jerusalem in April of 1933 as notable examples) before the nonviolent protests (popular demonstrations, boycotts, general strike) that initiated the “Great Revolt” (which eventually turned in the main violent). Of course the rhetoric and praxis of violence (as armed resistance and revolutionary liberation) was central to Fatah and the PLO for much of its history as has the resort to violence among Hamas and other Islamist political factions. Yet Fatah’s Sixth General Conference in 2009, while citing retention of its internationally recognized legal right of armed resistance to occupation, forswears acts of terrorist violence and gives unprecedented recognition to the significance of non-violent resistance in the form of mass mobilization or popular struggle, boycotts, and civil disobedience (in conjunction with ‘state-building,’ negotiations/bargaining, ‘legalism,’ international activism…). And Hamas, in addition to its “everyday nonviolent” social welfare and political activities (e.g., electoral participation and governance), has participated in and endorsed nonviolent actions against land confiscations and the Separation Barrier. Unfortunately, the IDF and Israeli police and security forces routinely respond in a brutally repressive and violent fashion to these nonviolent actions, invariably characterized as threats to “security” and as incitements to violence if not tantamount to same (this is part of the Israeli State’s systematic prevention of the emergence of truly democratic and civil public and political space in the Occupied Territories); as Arielle Azoulay and Adi Ophir remind us, Israel has even used “nonviolent funerals and memorial occasions as a pretext for arrests and interrogations ever since the outset of the Occupation.” Perhaps predictably, nonviolent forms of protest and resistance have not garnered anything close to the mass media attention devoted to acts of violence in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (although in the last decade or so there has been a notable increase in the academic study of nonviolence here and in the Middle East generally*), especially when these are committed by those struggling against repression and for collective self-determination. * Some of these works are found in my bibliography for “conflict resolution and nonviolence” here: https://www.academia.edu/4843963/Conflict_Resolution_and_Nonviolence_bibliography
Thank you Jon. I hope to update the list before the end of the year (after I finish updating the Islamic Studies compilation).
Perhaps an auspicious day to download this compilation for future reference (reading and research): https://www.academia.edu/4844193/World_of_Work_and_Labor_Law_bibliography [The avatar is Bhimrao Ramji (B.R.) Ambedkar.]
One of our foremost scholars of Indic philosophies, Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad, has an important guest-post at the Indian Philosophy blog: “On the possibility and nature of neurophilosophical study of Indic traditions.” I happen to be in full agreement on the following proposition: “I am not particularly confident that neuroscience in its current paradigm and practice settles anything about the nature and content of the discourse of these [i.e., Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist] contemplative practices.” Continue reading
Posted Aug 26, 2014 at ReligiousLeftLaw.com
Daniel Solove has been teaching this course for some time now as well and has a nice syllabus, bibliography, and other materials available here: http://docs.law.gwu.edu/facweb/dsolove/Law-Humanities/index.htm
Toggle Commented Jul 26, 2014 on Law and Literature at Legal Ethics Forum
(Yes, that is a typo.) Thank you for this list. I added some of these to my bibliography for "Law and Literature," available here: https://www.academia.edu/4844085/Law_and_Literature_bibliography
Toggle Commented Jul 24, 2014 on Law and Literature at Legal Ethics Forum
As for the precise legal reasons—within historical and political context—why Transjordan/Jordan was never "the" Palestinian state, should not be the Palestinian state, and, for that matter, will not become a Palestinian state, see: • Kattan, Victor. From Coexistence to Conquest: International Law and the Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1891-1949. London: Pluto Press, 2009. • Kattan, Victor, ed. The Palestine Question in International Law. London: British Institute of International and Comparative Law, 2008. • Quigley, John. The Statehood of Palestine: International Law in the Middle East Conflict. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2010. • Tilley, Virginia, ed. Beyond Occupation: Apartheid, Colonialism and International Law in the Occupied Territories. London: Pluto Press, 2012.
The Jordanian Department of Statistics estimated the 2011 population at 6,249,000. Historically, Palestinians in Jordan arrived as refugees, that number was approximately 3.24 million in 2009. According to UNRWA, Jordan was home to 1,951,603 Palestinian refugees in 2008, most of them Jordanian citizens. However, the number of Palestinians in Jordan does not, historically, legally or politically, add up to a Palestinian state. Fortunately, the political and legal right to collective self-determination, to the extent it is incarnate in the historic quest for a Palestinian state, is not determined by the voice of one Mudar Zahran (writing for a Daniel Pipes publication no less!), but by those with historic pedigree and political legitimacy representing Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem, and abroad (with a 'right of return'). It is the collective voice of Palestinians in our time and place who will, in the exercise of their legal rights, ultimately decide the meaning and geo-political boundary of a Palestinian state.
Monroe: You made assertions yourself, not arguments, so.... As for the myriad historical, political, and legal reasons Transjordan/Jordan cannot be considered "a" or the Palestinian state that has any fit with the historic aspirations of Arabs and Palestinians in Palestinee see (as representative or a taste of the relevant literature) these works: • Abu-Ludhod, Ibrahim, “Territorially-based Nationalism and the Politics of Negation,” in Edward Said and Christopher Hitchens, eds. Blaming the Victims: Spurious Scholarship and the Palestinian Question. London: Verso, 1988: 193-206. • Farsoun, Samih K. (with Christian E. Zacharia). Palestine and the Palestinians. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1997. • Quigley, John. The Statehood of Palestine: International Law in the Middle East Conflict. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2010. • Rogan, Eugene L. and Avi Shlaim, eds. The War for Palestine: Rewriting the History of 1948. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2001.
This is the properly edited version, which I took too long to complete and so it was not posted: Monroe, I've broken no promise, as I said I would respond but did not give you a precise date. Please be patient: I will have a long, documented post (or two) in which I will address your comment. I will not be addressing the bulk of the above, as most if not all noted international law scholars on this topic completely (and correctly) reject your first proposition. As to no. 3, state-building does not take place overnight (ask the Zionists), and given what happened to the Palestinians in the course of Israel's quest for a "homeland" in Palestine (e.g., ethnic cleansing, the Nakba, etc.), it is certainly understandable that they were unable to immediately establish a state in the region, particularly in light of the conspicuous lack of international support (or even interest) at the time for such an enterprise. In my considerable research on this topic, I've never seen anyone make an argument remotely like the one you've made here, as it is patently (and disappointingly) ludicrous. I will later address your claim about what Hamas is "dedicated to" which, while an oft-repeated claim (based as it is on the Hamas Charter) is again utterly wrong, at least with regard to statements by Hamas leaders and spokespersons for some time now (I'll go into more detail later). The Charter is largely considered by both Hamas and outside experts to be irrelevant to accounting for Hamas' politics and policies (it was never debated or discussed or formally approved by the group in any case). One would know this from consulting the better books on Hamas (all of which are included in my bibliography for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict). Finally, I can't take seriously no. 5, as has been made abundantly clear over the past several days: just the opposite is in fact the case, as a pro-Israeli bias has been evidence in the media in this and past conflicts (again, all amply documented in the relevant literature) between Gazans and Israel.... Perhaps by "pro-Hamas" bias you mean any reporting of the fact that civilians are needlessly being killed by the IDF, or simply the fact that some media sources are not willing to accept at face value everything Israel claims on its behalf (even some journalists and writers for Haaretz, like Yitzhak Laor, have done a better job in this regard than the mainstream press in this country). Again, I will have a substantial reply to the comment I referred to earlier when I get the time. Meanwhile, you can read this: http://www.religiousleftlaw.com/2014/07/expel-palestinians-populate-gaza-with-jews-says-knesset-deputy-speaker.html Or this: http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2014/07/human-shielding-gaza-2014717154428830848.html Or this: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v36/n15/mouin-rabbani/israel-mows-the-lawn Or this: http://mondoweiss.net/2014/07/hospital-evacuate-patients.html http://mondoweiss.net/2014/07/hospital-evacuate-patients.html (not mainstream media reporting)
Monroe, I've broken no promise, as I said I would respond but did not give you a precise date. Please be patient: I will have a long, document post (or two) in which I will address your comment. I will not be addressing the bulk of the above, as most if not all noted international law scholars on this topic completely (and correctly) reject your first proposition. As to no. 3, state-building does not take place overnight (ask the Zionists), and given the what happened to the Palestinians in the course of Israel's quest for a "homeland" in Palestine (e.g., ethnic cleansing, the Nakba, etc.), it is certainly understandable that they were unable to immediately establish a state in the region, particularly given the lack of international support at the time for such an enterprise. In my considerable research on this topic, I've never seen anyone make an argument remotely like the one you've made here, as it is patently (and disappointingly) ludicrous. I will later be addressing your claim about what Hamas is "dedicated to" which, while an oft-repeated claim (based as it is on the Hamas Charter) is again utterly wrong, at least with regard to Hamas leaders and spokespersons for some time now (I'll go into more detail later). The Charter is largely considered by both Hamas and outside experts to be irrelevant to accounting for Hamas' politics and policies (it was never debated or discussed or formally approved by the group in any case). Finally, I can't take seriously no. 5, as has been made abundantly clear over the past several days: just the opposite is in fact the case, as a pro-Israeli bias has been evidence in the media in this and past conflicts between Gazans and Israel...again, all amply documented in the relevant literature. Perhaps by "pro-Hamas" bias you mean any reporting of the fact that civilians are needlessly being killed by the IDF, or simply the fact that some media sources are not willing to accept at face value everything Israel claims on its behalf (even some journalists and writers for Haaretz, like Yitzhak Laor, have done a better job in this regard than the mainstream press in this country). Again, I will have a substantial reply to the comment I referred to earlier when I get the time. Meanwhile, you can read this: http://www.religiousleftlaw.com/2014/07/expel-palestinians-populate-gaza-with-jews-says-knesset-deputy-speaker.html Or this: http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2014/07/human-shielding-gaza-2014717154428830848.html Or this: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v36/n15/mouin-rabbani/israel-mows-the-lawn Or this: http://mondoweiss.net/2014/07/hospital-evacuate-patients.html http://mondoweiss.net/2014/07/hospital-evacuate-patients.html (not mainstream media reporting)
Precious, thank you.
No doubt the following fails to meet Professor Bernstein's idiosyncratic criteria for "real control on the ground in Gaza": As has been amply chronicled and explained in detail in the requisite literature, since 1994 Israel has used its considerable economic and military/security power to assiduously and successfully engage in a nefarious strategic enterprise aimed at “ghettoizing Gaza,” thereby directly and indirectly creating and contributing to the conditions of strangulation, isolation, starvation and economic collapse that continue to afflict this comparatively small piece of densely populated land. Since 2007, Israel and Egypt have collaborated on imposing a land, air, and sea blockade on the Gaza Strip. “Israel said that it relatively eased the blockade for non-military goods in June 2010” while “Egypt reopened the Rafah border crossing in 2011 for persons and goods.” “Concerning the restrictions on goods reaching Gaza via the land crossings the Palmer report stated that they were the main reason for an unsustainable and unacceptable humanitarian situation in Gaza. …[A] Fact-Finding Mission for the UN Human Rights Council chaired by a former judge of the International Criminal Court found that the blockade constituted collective punishment of the population of Gaza and was therefore unlawful. UN envoy Desmond Tutu, United Nations Human Rights Council head Navi Pillay, the International Committee of the Red Cross and some experts on international law consider the blockade illegal.” “In January and February 2011, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) conducted an assessment of the effects of the measures to ease the access restrictions. They concluded that they did not result in a significant improvement in people’s livelihoods. They found that a limited reactivation of the private sector resulted from the increased availability of consumer goods and some raw materials but the ‘pivotal nature of the remaining restrictions’ and the effects of three years of strict blockade prevented a significant improvement in livelihoods. Although the unemployment rate in Gaza fell from 39.3% to 37.4% in the second half of 2010 there were significant food price rises. There was little or no improvement in food insecurity rates in Gaza which continued to affect 52% of the population. Few of the 40,000 housing units needed to replace homes lost during Operation Cast Lead and for natural population growth could be built as a result of the ongoing restrictions on importing building materials. The approval of over 100 projects funded by international organizations intended to improve the ‘extremely deteriorated’ water and sanitation, education and health services, followed the easing of the blockade. The implementation of these projects was delayed by the entry approval process for materials and the limited opening of the Karni crossing. OCHA found that there had been no improvement in the quality of services provided to the population of the Gaza Strip as a result of the projects so far. There was no significant increase in the number of exit permits granted by Israel to allow access to the outside world including other parts of the Palestinian territories. Permits continued to be issued by Israel only on an exceptional basis with a 114 being issued during the second half of 2010.” The Israeli Civil Administration (‘which coordinates activities of government bureaus, the IDF, and security establishments’) continued to operate in Gaza after 2005. Among other things, it controls identity cards, which must be obtained with its consent, and the army “reserves the right to refuse it, as well as forbid a move on the part of anyone who has forgotten to inform it of a change of address or civil status.” Thousands of Palestinians have been forbidden to move for administrative reasons, and “residents of Gaza are only allowed to travel to the West Bank in exceptional humanitarian cases, particularly urgent medical cases, but not including marriage.” “Since 2008, they are not allowed to live or stay in Israel because of marriage with an Israeli.” The Israeli Supreme Court has blessed Israel’s claim that “it has the right to prevent the free movement of people through Israel from the Gaza Strip for security reasons.” Moreover, “Israel has considerably limited the fishing zone along the coast of Gaza, preventing Palestinians access to 85% of the maritime areas allotted to them in the 1994 Gaza–Jericho Agreement. Fishermen are attacked and their boats often seized.” “Israel does not allow operating air and seaports in Gaza, in violation with subsequent agreements between Israel and the Palestinians. The Gaza Airport, funded by donor countries, has been destroyed by Israeli bombardments and bulldozers. A Gaza Seaport project, started in 2000, was destroyed by the Israeli army, a few months after the construction had begun.” After the fair and free democratic elections in 2006, Israel collaborated with “the Quartet on the Middle East” to ensure that Hamas would be unable to effectively govern by withholding funds and tightening its siege (including the cutting off the flow of water to Gaza). More recently, as we learn in a recent NY Times opinion piece, “Despite having won the last elections, in 2006, Hamas decided to transfer formal authority to the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah. That decision led to a reconciliation agreement between Hamas and the Palestine Liberation Organization, on terms set almost entirely by the P.L.O. chairman and Palestinian Authority president, Mahmoud Abbas. Israel immediately sought to undermine the reconciliation agreement by preventing Hamas leaders and Gaza residents from obtaining the two most essential benefits of the deal: the payment of salaries to 43,000 civil servants who worked for the Hamas government and continue to administer Gaza under the new one, and the easing of the suffocating border closures imposed by Israel and Egypt that bar most Gazans’ passage to the outside world. [….] Israel strongly opposed American recognition of the new government…and sought to isolate it internationally, seeing any small step toward Palestinian unity as a threat. Israel’s security establishment objects to the strengthening of West Bank-Gaza ties, lest Hamas raise its head in the West Bank.”
From Ali Abunimah’s blog at The Electronic Intifada: “Israel must attack Gaza even more mercilessly, expel the population and resettle the territory with Jews, the deputy speaker of Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, has said. Moshe Feiglin, a member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ruling Likud Party, makes the call in an article for the Israeli news website Arutz Sheva. Feiglin demands that Israel launch attacks ‘throughout Gaza with the IDF’s [Israeli army’s] maximum force (and not a tiny fraction of it) with all the conventional means at its disposal.’ Force Gaza population out ‘After the IDF completes the “softening” of the targets with its firepower, the IDF will conquer the entire Gaza, using all the means necessary to minimize any harm to our soldiers, with no other considerations,’ Feiglin writes in one of several calls for outright war crimes. Following the re-conquest, Israel’s army ‘will thoroughly eliminate all armed enemies... Continue reading
Posted Jul 19, 2014 at ReligiousLeftLaw.com
As stated above, the term "effective control" was defined by John Dugard (2007), then UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, as follows: (a) substantial control of Gaza’s six land crossings; (b) control through military incursions, rocket attacks and sonic booms, and the declaration of areas inside the Strip as ‘no-go’ zones where anyone who enters can be shot; (c) complete control of Gaza’s airspace and territorial waters; and (d) control of the Palestinian Population Registry, which has the power and authority to define who is a ‘Palestinian’ and who is a resident of Gaza." Effective control" is thus not equivalent to "absolute control" and the criteria were outlined by way of meeting the conditions for a continuing occupation. But I'm happy to keep Professor Bernstein entertained. In any case, "hundreds of missiles from Gaza" are NOT raining down on Israel, as the vast majority of them have been 'intercepted' by Israel's Iron Dome system. Now were we to talk about what is in fact raining down on Gazans....
Professor Bell has responded to claims about his letter here: http://leiterlawschool.typepad.com/leiter/2014/07/more-on-a-controversial-legal-opinion-about-israeli-actions-professor-bell-responds-and-corrects-the.html (I plan on responding to Monroe's comment above at a later date over at Religious Left Law & Ratio Juris.)
I should have mentioned that Bell's legal opinion was submitted to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, not an unimportant fact.