Jan Dejnožka Home Page

Domovská Stránka Jana Dejnožky

Welcome! Vítejte!

Jan Dejnožka, Ph.D., J.D.

June 12, 2009

Welcome to the Jan Dejnožka Home Page, with philosophy papers and books, reviews of classical music with a reminiscence of Louis Krasner, and more. Permission is granted to quote material from unpublished papers on this site, provided that the papers are cited by author, title, date, and Web address (URL). Please feel free to contact me at dejnozka@umich.edu.

Philosophia est amor sapientiae.

Sapientis est altissimas causas considerare.

Philosophia est ars artium, scientia scientiarum, regina scientiarum, magistra omnium artium et scientiarum.

Inventum philosophicum semper perfectibile.

Cogitatione fugitis. Carpe cogitationem.

Philosophy / Filosofie

Curriculum Vitae

Abstracts of Philosophy Papers

About the Author

My books and papers have been published in the United States, Canada, England, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Slovakia, Norway, Israel, and South Africa.

For Ann Arbor readers, all of my published books are here in the Ann Arbor District Library. However, the book links below provide up to date copies.

My Amazon Author Central page is here.

My ResearchGate page is here. Most of the book and paper links below are now to ResearchGate, where you can download these works as free pdf files. Just click on the link and look for the download button. Some files may look garbled on ResearchGate’s public access, and a few do not have public access previews; but they look fine within ResearchGate, and the downloads should look fine.

Philosophy 101: papers for beginners / Filosofie 101: práce pro začátečníky

The first three papers in this section were inspired by members of Living Grace Ministry (LGM), Korean United Methodist Church (KUMC), Ann Arbor MI, including Pastor Steve Khang. LGM is primarily a youth ministry from middle school up to graduate school, though anyone can attend, and I often do. My views do not reflect those of Pastor Steve, LGM or KUMC. Since I’m agnostic, my views are very different in some ways, and the papers are intended for college students in general.

"Philosophies of." A note for students in other fields who would like to study the philosophy of their field.

"Good-bye to Postmodernism and All That." Refuting relativisms. The first chapter of my ontology book has a more technical discussion.

"Personal Relationships: Emotions and Responsibilities." This is the only work I have done in what Aristotle would call the practical science of ethics. All the other philosophy I have done is in what Aristotle would call theoretical science. Theoretical science is the study of what is the case, or how things are in the world. Practical science is the study of how we ought to live in the world. The paper was inspired by two of Pastor Steve Khang’s sermons, one on right and wrong relationships, and the other on kinds of love, at Living Grace Ministry in Ann Arbor MI in 2015. Thanks to Pastor Steve for inspiring this paper.

Why I am an Agnostic.This is an edit of three emails, so it’s more personal and conversational than thematically organized.

Book / Kniha 1: The Ontology of the Analytic Tradition and Its Origins: Realism and Identity in Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein, and Quine

Basic Information: book summary, praise, and ordering information. It is here on Amazon.com. Don’t get the 1996 first printing. It is superseded by the far better paperback reprint with minor corrections through 2003. Much of the 2003 paperback reprint is on Google Books.

Preface and Chapter 1 (Introduction), appearing by kind permission of the publisher, Rowman & Littlefield. From the 2003 reprint. It is for personal use only and cannot be photocopied or forwarded without permission from the publisher.

Reviewed in Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Philosophia, International Journal of Philosophical Studies, International Studies in Philosophy, Filosofický Časopis, B Philosophica, Russell, and The Bertrand Russell Society Quarterly.

Book / Kniha 2: Bertrand Russell on Modality and Logical Relevance: Second Edition

First Edition (1999). Ashgate. The Avebury Series in Philosophy. Sold out. Reviewed in History and Philosophy of Logic, Studia Logica, The Bulletin of Symbolic Logic, Russell, and The Bertrand Russell Society Quarterly. I advise people against buying it. The second edition is over twice as long, over half the material is new; and the original material was revised over a period of twenty years

Routledge Edition (2018). This is the Routledge Revivals Series republication of the first edition. While I’m honored to become a Routledge author, unfortunately I must advise against buying the first edition, whether in the Routledge republication or in the original printing. The second edition is over twice as long; thus over half the material is completely new. And the old material has been rewritten over a period of twenty years. (The first edition was published in 1999, and the last corrections to the second edition were published in 2019.) Thus the first edition is superseded from the first page to the last, and republishing it three years after the second edition appeared is a major retrograde step - and a disservice to the academic community. The second edition is not only over twice as comprehensive and twenty years more advanced, but it’s also much less expensive. If it’s five times better at half the price, then you’re ten times better off buying it. The only value the first edition could possibly have now is historic.

Second Edition (2015). CreateSpace. Minor corrections through 2019. “Looks like a seminal work”. Paul Nascimbene. Reviewed in Organon F. Reviews expected in Logic and Logical Philosophy and Studia Philosophica. The entire book is here for free downloading on ResearchGate.

Basic Information on the second edition: book summary and praise.

Book / Kniha 3: The Concept of Relevance and the Logic Diagram Tradition

Basic Information: book summary and praise. It is here on Amazon.com.

Reviewed in Studia Logica, Logic and Logical Philosophy, and Organon F. Review expected in Studia Philosophica. The entire book is here for free downloading on ResearchGate.

Book / Kniha 4: Logical Relevance in English Evidence law: Its History and Impact on Keynes and Russell

Basic information: book summary and praise. It is here on Amazon.com. The entire book is here for free downloading on ResearchGate.

Book / Kniha 5: The Growth of a Thinker: A Chapbook of Poems

Basic Information: book summary and praise. It is here on Amazon.com.

Book / Kniha 6: Two Sermons

Basic Information: book summary and praise. It is here on Amazon.com.

Book / Kniha 7: Corporate Entity: A Legal and Ontological Study

Unpublished draft manuscript on ResearchGate. October 8, 2007. Subsumes the corporate entity papers listed below and adds new material on real identity and real distinction, emergentism, supervenience, mereology, and the quantification and mathematization of business phenomena in economics.

Philosophy papers / Filosofické práce

Note on Russell and the Materialist Principle of Logically Possible Worlds.” Organon F 25/3, 429-430, 2018.

Russell and the Materialist Principle of Logically Possible Worlds.” Organon F 25/2, 265-278, 2018.

Russell and Being Qua Identity in Russell’s Ontologies.” Theory and History of Ontology, February 2018. Written for Raul Corazzon’s ontology site.

"Dummett's Forward Road to Frege and to Intuitionism." Diametros 25, 118-131, September 2010.

The Concept of Relevance and the Logic Diagram Tradition.” Logica Universalis 4/1, 67-135, 2010, author’s personal copy appearing by kind permission of Springer. Philosophy of logic paper.

The Analogical Argument for Universals.” Unpublished. November 2008. An early version was distributed at the Butchvarov symposium, SUNY at Geneseo, 2004. Metaphysics paper.

Dummett’s Backward Road to Frege and to Intuitionism.” Appearing by kind permission of Open Court Publishing Company, a division of Carus Publishing Company, from The Philosophy of Michael Dummett, ed. by Randall E. Auxier and Lewis Edwin Hahn, copyright 2007 by The Library of Living Philosophers in La Salle, Ill.

Are the Natural Numbers Just Any Progression? Peano, Russell, and Quine.” The Review of Modern Logic vol. 10, nos. 3-4, issue 32, 91-111, March 2005-May 2007, appearing by kind permission of the editor. Philosophy of mathematics paper.

Observational Ecumenicism, Holist Sectarianism: The Quine-Carnap Conflict on Metaphysical Realism.” Philo 9/2, 165-91, Fall-Winter 2006, appearing by kind permission of the editor. Philosophy of science paper.

Russell on Modality,” The Bertrand Russell Society Quarterly 120, November 2003, 33-38. Philosophy of logic paper.

Russell and MacColl: Reply to Grattan-Guinness, Woleński, and Read.” Nordic Journal of Philosophical Logic 6/1, 21-42, 2001, appearing by kind permission of Elsevier. Philosophy of logic paper.

Origin of Russell’s Early Theory of Logical Truth as Purely General Truth: Bolzano, Peirce, Frege, Venn, or MacColl?” Modern Logic vol. 8 nos. 3-4, May 2000-October 2001, 21-30, 2001, appearing by kind permission of the editor. History of logic paper.

Butchvarov: Phenomenology, Ontology, Universals, and Goodness.” Philosophia 28/1-4, 445-54, June 2001, appearing by kind permission of Springer.

Quine: Whither Empirical Equivalence?” South African Journal of Philosophy 14/4, 175-82, 1995, appearing by kind permission of the editor. Philosophy of science paper.

Origins of the Private Language Argument.” Diálogos 66, 59-78, 1995, appearing by kind permission of the editor. This was originally a 189 page book MS which I condensed to a paper. Philosophy of language paper.

Russell’s Seventeen Private-Language Arguments.” Russell 11/1, 11-35, 1991, appearing by kind permission of the editor. The paper was read at the Bertrand Russell Society meeting at the Eastern Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association in December 1990. Philosophy of language paper.

The Ontological Foundation of Russell’s Theory of Modality.” Erkenntnis 32, 383-418, 1990, appearing by kind permission of Springer. The paper was read at the Bertrand Russell Society meeting at the Eastern Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association in December 1988. Logic and ontology paper.

Zeno’s Paradoxes and the Cosmological Argument.” International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 25, 65-81, 1989, appearing by kind permission of Springer. Philosophy of mathematics is used to show a fallacy in three of St. Thomas Aquinas' five arguments for the existence of God. Using infinitesimals will not change the argument, if there is no smallest infinitesimal. Philosophy of religion and philosophy of mathematics paper.

Russell’s Robust Sense of Reality: A Reply to Butchvarov.” Grazer Philosophische Studien 32, 155-64, 1988, appearing by kind permission of the editor. The paper, Butchvarov’s response and my rejoinder, and Stewart Umphrey’s response and my rejoinder, were read at the Bertrand Russell Society meeting at the Eastern Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association on December 28, 1987 in New York City. All five papers appear in GPS 32. Ontology paper.

Dual Object Theories of Identity, Existence, and Modality.” Presented at the United States Naval Academy. Faculty paper series, 1987. Ontology paper.

Frege: Existence Defined as Identifiability.” International Studies in Philosophy 14, 1-18, 1982, appearing by kind permission of the editor. Ontology paper.

Frege on Identity.” International Studies in Philosophy 13, 31-41, 1981, appearing by kind permission of the editor. Philosophy of language paper.

Law papers / Právní práce

1. “Must a Tax Intercept of Child Support Beyond the Statute of Limitations Be Returned to Obligor?” Michigan Family Law Journal 28/8-9, 8-10, August-September 1999.

2. “Note on Continuing and Exclusive Jurisdiction over Child Support Orders.” Michigan Family Law Journal 25, 10, June/July 1998.

Law school student papers / Pisemné práce jako studujícího práv

Plato and Hobbes: On the Foundations of Political Philosophy.” written for Don Regan’s and Joseph Raz’s jointly taught political philosophy course (1994). A theory of the state basing theory of value on theory of human nature, based on a general solution to Hume’s is ought (fact value) inference problem.

The Freedom of Morality.” written for Joseph Raz’s and Don Regan’s jointly taught value and politics course (1994). A critical study of Joseph Raz’s book, The Morality of Freedom. Topics include authority justified by reason, perfectionist moral ideals vs. neutralism, rights-based liberty, incommensurability of values, human well-being, political autonomy, value-pluralism, and harm and toleration.

Is an Objectively Best Tax Policy Possible? Non-normative Tax Policy and Other Tax Ideals.” written for Kyle Logue’s tax law course (1994). A discussion of objectivity and the paradoxes of relativism as they apply to tax policy. This is a reply to a 1992 paper in Tax Policy by Douglas A. Kahn and Jeffrey S. Lehman.

Corporate Entity: A Legal and Ontological Study.” written for Joseph Vining for independent research credit (1996), after taking his enterprise organization course. There is a wide discussion of issues, but the main topic is the reality of human groups and institutions. Subsumed into my corporate entity book as parts 1 and 2.

Corporate Entity: Vagueness, Artifice, and Reality.” a sequel to my “Corporate Entity: A Legal and Ontological Study.” July 6, 2005; updated September 26, 2005. An original discussion of vagueness, and the only sustained criticism of Russell’s definition of “vague” I know of. Subsumed into my corporate entity book as part 3, sects. 1-9.

Logical Relevance.” written for Richard D. Friedman’s advanced evidence course (1996). This is an early draft of my Russell book, chapter 10.

Daubert vs. Frye: Logical Empiricism and Reliable Science.” written in reply to Heidi Li Feldman’s advanced torts course and a 1996 paper by Richard D. Friedman.

The law school papers were edited for the Web in 2004, except for the 2005 sequel on corporate entity.

Philosophy web sites / Filosofické webové stránky

1. Gottlob Frege

2. Bertrand Russell

3. Ludwig Wittgenstein

4. Willard Van Orman Quine

5. Panayot Butchvarov

6. American Philosophical Association

7. Philosophy Documentation Center

Choe Chi-won

Chief philosopher and traditional founder of my wife’s family, Choi / Choe.

Mostly LP / Hlavnĕ LP

Recommendations of classical music with a reminiscence of Louis Krasner

Mostly violin / Hlavnĕ housle

Advice to beginners on violin with video clip links

Favorites / Favority

Brief lists of philosophical, musical, literary, artistic, and movie favorites

Our family in photographs / Naše rodina ve fotografii

The growth of a Navy family

Official U.S. Navy photo, USS AMERICA CV-66, 1982

Greetings from the Indian Ocean, ca. April 1983

Applebee’s Restaurant, Ann Arbor MI, March 23, 2010: left to right: Jan, Julie, Chung, Marina

U.S. Naval Academy Foundation Reception, Navy-Marine Corps Stadium Dining Facility, Annapolis MD, June 30, 2014: Marina, Chung, Jan, Julie

U.S. Naval Academy. Induction Day, Annapolis MD, after Julie took the Oath of Office as Midshipman, July 1, 2014: Chung, Marina, Julie, Jan

Julie Dejnožka, MIDN USN, Official U.S. Navy Photo, United States Naval Academy, October 16, 2015

Navy Recruiting Station, Troy MI, I swear Marina in to the U.S. Navy the first time, pre-high school graduation for early enlistment benefits, February 17, 2015. As a former Navy officer, I could do that.

Navy Recruiting Station, Troy MI, I swear Marina in to the U.S. Navy the second time, post-high school graduation as an adult entering active duty, July 27, 2015. She shipped out to boot camp the same day.

Marina graduates from Boot Camp, Naval Station Great Lakes, September 18, 2015: Chung, Jan, Marina. Photo by CAPT Andrew Rosa, Ret.

Marina Dejnožka, SR USN, Official U.S. Navy Photo, Naval Station Great Lakes, September 2015

Julie graduates from the U.S. Naval Academy and is commissioned as Ensign. U.S. Navy, May 25, 2018.

Now we're a Navy family: a proud and happy Dad and both daughters! I never imagined they'd be interested!

The Destroyer Girls

USS PORTER DDG-78. Julie’s first ship, summer cruise 2015. Julie reported to USS GRIDLEY DDG-101 after graduating from the Naval Academy in May 2018.

USS MCFAUL DDG-74. Marina’s first ship, three year duty 2016-2019

All three ships are Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers.

The growth of a philosopher

Young Philosopher, 1954, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

Young Philosopher, ca. 1955, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

Senior yearbook photo, 1969, National Merit Finalist, Niskayuna High School, Niskayuna NY

Undergraduate student, 1973, senior year, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

Graduate student, ca. 1974, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

Graduate student, ca. 1975: with sister Karlinda, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

Graduate student, ca. 1975: with father Ladislav, photo by Helen Dejnožka

The Philosopher's Stone, 1976, photo by Ladislav Dejnožka

The philosopher, 1991, studio photo

Family reunion, Old Country Buffet, Schenectady NY, 2008: with mother Helen, photo by Chung Dejnožka

Self-portrait, January 8, 2018 My last day of work after almost 21 years at Wayne County Circuit Court. My accompanying cell phone text: “It is finished. I’m now nobody! And I like it! It’s my natural state. It’s everyone’s natural state. When a Zen master attained satori, what did he do next? He had a cup of tea. Now that I’m retired, what do I plan to do next? Eat lunch and probably take a nap.”

Self-portrait, April 29, 2018 My accompanying cell phone text: “Retiring four years earlier than I had planned was one of the best decisions I ever made.”

Thoughts of spiritual peace / Myslenky duchovního míru

Tao Te Ching

Other people are contented, enjoying the sacrificial feast of the ox.

In spring some go to the park, and climb the terrace,

But I alone am drifting, not knowing where I am.

Like a newborn babe before it learns to smile,

I am alone, without a place to go.

Others have more than they need, but I alone have nothing.

I am a fool. Oh yes! I am confused.

Other men are clear and bright,

But I alone am dim and weak

Other men are sharp and clever,

But I alone am dull and stupid.

Oh, I drift like the waves of the sea,

Without direction, like the restless wind.

Everyone else is busy,

But I alone am aimless and depressed.

I am different.

I am nourished by the great mother.”

Ch. 20. Trans. by Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English. New York: Vintage, 1972.

The Old Testament

As thou knowest not what is the way of the wind,...

Even so thou knowest not the work of God who doeth all.

In the morning sow thy seed,

And in the evening withhold not thine hand:

For thou knowest not which shall prosper,

Whether this or that, or whether they both alike shall be good.” Ecclesiastes 11: 4-6.

The New Testament

Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man hath not where to lay his head.” Matthew 8: 20.

The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” John 3: 8.

The Dhammapada

92. Who can trace the path of those who know the right food of life and, rejecting over-abundance, soar in the sky of liberation, the infinite Void without beginning? Their course is as hard to follow as that of the birds in the air.

384. When beyond meditation and contemplation a Brahmin has reached the other shore, then he attains the supreme vision and all his fetters are broken.

385. He for whom there is neither this nor the further shore, nor both, who, beyond all fear, is free―him I call a Brahmin.

416. He who wanders without a home in this world, leaving behind the feverish thirst for the world, and the fever never returns―him I call a Brahmin.”

Trans. by Juan Mascaró. New York: Penguin, 1980.

Svetasvatara Upanishad

Two birds, inseparable friends, cling to the same tree. One of them eats the sweet fruit, the other looks on without eating....He is beyond all the forms of the tree (of the world) and of time, he is the other....He is the one bird in the midst of the world; he is also (like) the fire (of the sun) that has set in the ocean.”

The Upanishads. vol. 2. Trans. by Friedrich Max Muller. New York: Dover, 1962.

Plato,The Republic

Socrates: Yes, but there may be more to this question: I really do not know as yet, but we must follow the argument wherever, like a wind, it may lead us.”

Philosophical beginnings / Filosofické počáteky

Prefaces of Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, Russell, and Wittgenstein

Social conscience / Sociální svědomí

World population


Global warming

Bee friendly. My home garden and yard are bee friendly, meaning no herbicides or pesticides in over 5 years, and it's really more like 10. I originally stopped using the poisons because it was too much time and trouble, but it turned out to be a better thing than I thought. I like bees and want to help them. We had lots of bees in 2016, also butterflies and a hummingbird.

a. Two thirds of our food must be pollinated, yet we’re killing the pollinating bees with poisons.

b. Pesticide residues have been found in 75% of honey sold worldwide.

c. Major home supply chains sell “bee friendly” plants that are pre-treated with chemicals that poison bees.

d. An example of local “grass roots” help in my old home town, Ann Arbor.

e. Ideas for homeowners. Doing even just some of these things may help. All I did was stop using poisons, and plant wildflower mix from seed.

Young scientist has new idea to remove plastic from the oceans. See his Web site.

Pace Elon Musk, “There is no Planet B.”

If you give money through a charitable institution, please be sure to do an independent check on the institution. The standard rule of thumb is that it should be giving at least 80% of the money it receives to the intended recipients, and using no more than 20% for administrative costs.

This Web site was started on June 17, 1998. This page was updated on August 23, 2019.