Calendar and Events
Spring 2017 Lectures and Events
Collective Responsibility and Climate Change - Professor kirk Ludwig
Human induced global warming is the most significant environment challenge the human species has faced in the long history of civilization. Who is to blame? Who is responsible, morally, for responding to it insofar as we can? Arguably, we human beings as a group (and some of us more than others) are collectively morally responsible for having caused and continuing to contribute to global warming (for none of us can do it alone), and arguably we are collectively responsible for doing something about it(for, again,none of us can do it alone). In this talk, I take a look at the ground for the claim that we bear both backwards looking collective responsibility for global warming and forward looking collective responsibility for doing something about it, and at what the relation is between the claim that we bear collective responsibility and our individual responsibilities. I will devolve an account of shared intention, one that makes each participant equally responsible in full for the harms done, and not just in proportion to their causal contribution. I will also consider the complications presented by real-world case like climate change and the role of institutions, governments and states in assignments of responsibility.
Resisting Body Oppression: An Aesthetic Approach - Professor Sherri Irvin
This talk discusses oppression based on judgments of bodily unattractiveness and argues for an aesthetic approach to resisting this form of oppression. Philosophical theories have often suggested that appropriate aesthetic judgments should converge on sets of objects consensually found to be beautiful or ugly. The convergence of aesthetic judgments about human bodies, however, is a significant source of social injustice, because people judged to be unattractive pay substantial social and economic penalties in domains such as education, employment and criminal justice. The injustice is compounded due to the interaction between standards of attractiveness and gender, race, disability, and queer and trans identities
I argue that, in response to this form of injustice, we should actively work to reduce our participation in standard aeathetic practices that involve attractiveness judgments. However, this does not mean we should refuse engagement with the embodiment of others; even if it were possible to do so, ignorning someone's embodiment is often a way of dehumanizing them. Instead, I advocate a form of aesthetic preactice, aesthetic exploration, that involves seeking out the unique aesthetic affordances of all bodies and aiming to have positive aesthetic experiences of them, regardless ofwhether they are attractive in the standard sense. I argue that there are good ethical reasons to cultivate aesthetic exploration, and that it is psychologically plausible that doing so would help to alleviate the social injustice attending judgments of attractiveness.
Prof. Irvin is Presidential Research Professor of Philosophy & women's and Gender Studies, Co-Director of the Center for Social Justice at the University of Oklahoma
Thursday, 3/16/17 at 3:15pm in the Tate Center, Room 202
Hermeneutical Impases- Professor Luvell Anderson
When people respond to chants of ‘Black lives matter’ with ‘All lives matter’ or excoriate Colin Kaepernick for being “anti-military” or “anti-American” when he sits or kneels during the playing of the National Anthem, there appears to be a break in understanding. BLM protestors and Kaepernick understand their actions and messages in one way, detractors in quite a different way. I call these breaks in understanding "hermeneutical impasses." In this talk I discuss the nature of these impasses and the challenges a particular type of impasse presents for resolving it.
Prof. Anderson is Professor of Philosophy at The University of Memphis.
Friday, 2/17/17 at 3:30pm The Tate Center, Room 202
Spring 2016 Lectures and Events
Putting Social Epistemology of Science Into Practice - Professor Helen Longino
The role of background assumptions in determining the evidential relevance of observational data to hypotheses seems to put claims for scientific objectivity in jeopardy. What I call strong social epistemology argues that this so-called underdetermination problem is best addressed by bringing the social interactions within science into the orbit of epistemology. The talk will develop this argument and suggest how the epistemological norms of social epistemology can be deployed in environmental science.
Prof. Longino is the Clarence Irving Lewis Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University.
Thursday, 4/14/16 at 6:30pm in the Alumni Hall of Randolph Hall
The Anthropocene: Love it or Leave it - Professor Dale Jamieson
This is a special colloquium in honor of Ned Hettinger’s retirement – a talk by Prof. Dale Jamieson, Professor of Environmental Studies and Philosophy at New York University The Anthropocene: Love it or Leave it on Tuesday, 3/15/2016 in the EHHP Alumni Center
Prof. Jamieson is a prolific author whose most recent academic works are Reason in a Dark Time: Why the Struggle to Stop Climate Change Failed--and What It Means For Our Future (Oxford, 2014) and Love in the Anthropocene (OR, 2015), a collection of short stories & essays written with the novelist, Bonnie Nadzam.
From Subjective Physicalism to Pansychism - Professor Robert J. Howell
According to Subjective Physicalism, the world is completely made of physical stuff, but certain parts of the world can only be fully understood by subjects who instantiate certain physical states. One challenge for this approach to the mind/body problem is that subjective physicalism might collapse into a form of panpsychism, according to which consciousness is everywhere, even in sticks, stones, and electrons.
Dr. Robert J. Howell is Dedman Family Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Southern Methodist University.
Thursday, February 25th at 3:15 pm in Addlestone Library, Room 227