The digital age has brought about new dimensions of connectedness and alienation in the 21st century. New communication technologies and social media have transformed the everyday realities of human relations in many different ways, some positive and perhaps some negative. It is a legitimate question to ask what this is doing to interpersonal relationships and institutions.
One vitally important area of transformation in recent decades is in the area of college education. The traditional brick and mortar classroom is no longer the only option for those seeking a higher education. Online education has been making academic inroads in virtually all demographics, and it is a legitimate question to ask how this is transforming higher education.
Having taught thousands of students in the traditional classroom and in the online classroom, I intend to explore a major difference in the relation of the spoken to the written word. The classic critique of the written word is, of course, found spoken by Socrates in Plato's dialogue Phaedrus (274 ff). Ironically, this critique would not be part of the contemporary philosophical discussion if it had not been written by Plato and read by students of philosophy for the last 2500 years.
Philosophical hermeneutics is the best field to address this new dynamic, and Paul Ricoeur makes a plea for writing and via his dialectic of distanciation and appropriation. I intend to discuss some advantages and disadvantages of the asynchronous, online classroom and offer some reflections on the future of higher education online.
Christopher Myers, American Public University, USA
Building the concrete ethics (or moral) always depends on the solution of the question of the existence. "Due" (better or "Good") is determined according to the understanding of the individual's existence, its aims and sense. It's important to note, that in this case any ethics can be called "immanent" - any transcendent and transcendental idea is needed only for explanation or justification of an individual's existence. All these connections mean that it could be possible to construct ethics after clarifying the answer about the individual's existence. But we propose to approach the question of the construction of ethics from the other sight: to make conclusions about the existence after analyses of the ethics and the ethical, but not backwards. To clarify practical possibility to identify "better" or "due" and to describe the moment of this identifying, we propose to use the concept of ". We call an ethical situation such situation in which due reveals itself, in which it is shown or appears. Obviously, such a situation should be located before or outside previously outlined or definite (based on some sources) understanding of due, outside any visions of Good and Evil. As we can see through this analysis, the moment of the appearance of Due is not the moment of the disclosure of difference in the being, but it is the moment of creation, of marking this difference. Due is the implementation of the self-own being through co-existence, through sharing of self-own existence with others. And moral responsibility is not the result of freedom of the other (or the result of the presence of the Other), but the Other is the result of the statement of the moral responsibility.