Aristotle’s concept of matter and the generation of animals. Anna Schriefl @ Wolff Conference Room, D1106
Nov 14 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

There is a broad consensus that Aristotle introduced the concept of matter in order to develop a consistent account of substantial change. However, it is disputed which role matter fulfills in substantial change. According to the traditional interpretation, matter persists while taking on or losing a substantial form. According to a rival interpretation, matter does not persist in substantial change; instead, it is an entity from which a new substance can emerge and which ceases to exist in this process. In my view, both interpretations are problematic in the light of Aristotle’s broader ontological project and are at odds with the way Aristotle describes the substantial generation of living beings. On the basis of Aristotle’s biological theory, I will suggest that Aristotelian matter is a continuant in substantial generation, but does not satisfy the common criteria for persistence that apply to individual substances.

Anna Schriefl
Anna Schriefl is Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin (assistant professor) at the University of Bonn, and currently a visiting scholar at the New School. She has published a book about Plato’s criticism of money and wealth, and most recently an introduction into Stoicism (both in German).

Animalhouse: Animals and Their Environs. @ Philosophy Dept., New School
Apr 23 – Apr 24 all-day


Keynote Speakers: Cary Wolfe (Rice) and Lori Gruen (Wesleyan)

This conference seeks to explore the relationship between animals and their environs, as well as the philosophical traditions that speak to these complex notions. We invite participants to question if and how philosophy’s treatment of animals and their environs can help us make sense of our current ecological situation. How have considerations of habitat, dominion, and domesticity determined the (ethical, ontological, rhetorical) status of animals? Conversely, how have presuppositions about “the animal” informed what environs are proper to “man”? What would it mean for an animal to be “at home” in the current world? Can philosophical approaches to animals be more than an instrumentalizing procedure? How will climate change alter not only the vitality of a species but the very grounds from which it lays claim to a home?

We welcome paper submissions of no more than 2500 words, that are prepared for a blind review, and suitable for a 15-20 minute long presentation.

Email your submission (in PDF format) to with “Animalhouse Submission” in the subject line. In your email, please include the following details: (a) author’s name; (b) paper title; (c) institutional affiliation; (d) contact information; and (e) abstract of no more than 250 words. Please do not include your name on the paper you are submitting. The deadline for submissions is December 31, 2019. Accepted speakers will be notified by February 1, 2020.

Questions can be directed to Aaron Neber at

For updated program information and full CFP, see: