Epistemology and Ethics Workshop @ Plaza View Room, 12th Floor
Mar 26 @ 5:30 pm – 6:45 pm

AY 2018 – 19 Workshop Schedule

September 25th – Avery Archer (GWU)

October 16th – Daniel Singer (Penn)

November 13th – Ariel Zylberman (SUNY Albany)

February 26th – Vita Emery (Fordham)

March 26th – Kathryn Tabb (Columbia)

April 23rd – Carol Hay (UMass Lowell)

The Epistemology and Ethics group is composed of faculty and graduate students at Fordham and other nearby universities. Papers are read in advance, so the majority of the time is devoted to questions and discussion.

Location: Plaza View Room, 12th Floor, Lowenstein Bldg., 113 West 60th Street. If interested in attending, email dheney[at]fordham[dot]edu.

Epistemology and Ethics Workshop @ Plaza View Room, 12th Floor
Apr 23 @ 5:30 pm – 6:45 pm

AY 2018 – 19 Workshop Schedule

September 25th – Avery Archer (GWU)

October 16th – Daniel Singer (Penn)

November 13th – Ariel Zylberman (SUNY Albany)

February 26th – Vita Emery (Fordham)

March 26th – Kathryn Tabb (Columbia)

April 23rd – Carol Hay (UMass Lowell)

The Epistemology and Ethics group is composed of faculty and graduate students at Fordham and other nearby universities. Papers are read in advance, so the majority of the time is devoted to questions and discussion.

Location: Plaza View Room, 12th Floor, Lowenstein Bldg., 113 West 60th Street. If interested in attending, email dheney[at]fordham[dot]edu.

Humane Understanding Conference @ Fordham Lincoln Center
May 31 – Jun 1 all-day

As work on the nature of understanding has expanded in recent years, there has been increasing interest in the question of what might be distinctive about our understanding of other people, or humane understanding.

Our conference will explore this question, and consider how recent debates might be enriched by insights from areas such as epistemology, the philosophy of science, the philosophy of social science, the hermeneutical tradition, and the “verstehen” tradition in Continental philosophy.

Confirmed Speakers:

Olivia Bailey (Tulane)

Kristin Gjesdal (Temple)

Stephen R. Grimm (Fordham)

Kareem Khalifa (Middlebury)

Michael Strevens (NYU)

Karsten Stueber (Holy Cross)

Call for Abstracts:

3-4 spots on the program will be filled via a call for abstracts. Submitted abstracts should be no longer than 500 words, and should be emailed to by December 1, 2018. Meals at the conference will be covered, but scholars whose abstracts are selected will cover their own travel and lodging costs. Abstracts should try to engage with the following questions:

How does understanding people differ from other kinds of understanding, such as the understanding of concepts, language, or natural phenomena? Do these various types of understanding bring different cognitive resources to bear, or have different epistemic profiles?

Is there a deep unity among these types of understanding, or not?

What are the distinctive ways in which the study of literature or art or history enhance our understanding of other people?

What role does the reenactment of another’s perspective play in humane understanding? Is it merely a heuristic for discovering a person’s mental states (as Hempel seemed to think) or does it play a more epistemically robust role? Is reenactment of this sort indispensable to intentional-action explanation?

How does recent research on social cognition and mindreading bear on older debates about Verstehen?

How does the hermeneutical tradition shed light on these issues? Is it engaged with different questions, or does it pursue them from a distinctively different angle?

How do we adjudicate between competing interpretations of people’s actions?

What contribution does memory make to humane understanding?

International Merleau-Ponty Circle: Affect / Emotion / Feeling @ 12th Floor Lounge
Sep 12 – Sep 14 all-day

Thursday, September 12 Schedule

8:30 – 9 a.m. Registration and coffee
9 – 9:15 a.m. Opening remarks: Shiloh Whitney, Conference Director
Session 1 – Organic Affectivity and Animality
Moderator: Emilia Angelova, Concordia University
9:15 – 10 a.m. Hermanni Yli-Tepsa, University of Jyväskylä: “How to feel like our eyes: tracing the theme of instinctive affectivity in Phenomenology of Perception”
10 – 10:45 a.m. Sarah DiMaggio, Vanderbilt University: “Flesh and Blood: Reimagining Kinship”
10:45 – 11 a.m. Break
Session 2 – Passivity
Moderator: Philip Walsh, Fordham University
11 – 11:45 a.m. David Morris, Concordia University: “The Transcendentality of Passivity: Affective Being and the Contingency of Phenomenology as Institution”
11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Rajiv Kaushik, Brock University “Merleau-Ponty on Passivity and the Limit of Philosophical Critique”
12:30 – 2 p.m. Lunch Break
Session 3 – Theorizing Emotion 1: Outside-in, Inside-Outside
Moderator: Duane H. Davis, University of North Carolina at Asheville
2 – 2:45 p.m. Ed Casey, Stonybrook University: “Bringing Edge to Bear: Vindicating Merleau-Ponty’s Nascent Ideas on Emotion”
2:45 – 3:30 p.m. Ondřej Švec, Charles University Prague: “Acting out one’s emotion”
3:30 – 3:45 p.m. Break
Session 4 – Theorizing Emotion 2: Intersubjective Dimensions
Moderator: April Flakne, New College of Florida
3:45 – 4:30 p.m. Jan Halák, Palacky University Olomouc: “On the diacritical value of expression with regard to emotion”
4:30 – 5:15 p.m. Corinne Lajoie, Penn State University: “The equilibrium of sense: Levels of embodiment and the (dis)orientations of love”
Winner of the M. C. Dillon Award for best graduate essay
5:15 – 5:45 p.m. Snack Break (light refreshments provided)
Thursday Keynote
Introduction: Shiloh Whitney, Fordham University
5:45 – 7:15 p.m. Alia Al-Saji, McGill University
“The Affective Flesh of Colonial Duration”

Friday, September 13 Schedule

8:30 – 9 a.m. Registration and coffee
Session 5 – Affective Pathologies and Empathy
Moderator: Lisa Käll, Stockholm University
9 – 9:45 a.m. Ståle Finke, Norwegian University of Science and Technology Trondheim: “Structuring Affective Pathology: Merleau-Ponty and Psychoanalysis”
9:45 – 10:30 a.m. Catherine Fullarton, Emory University: “Empathy, Perspective, Parallax”
10:30 – 10:45 a.m. Break
Session 6 – Eating and Breathing
Moderator: Ann Murphy, University of New Mexico
10:45 – 11:30 a.m. Whitney Ronshagen, Emory University: “Visceral Relations: On Eating, Affect, and Sharing the World”
11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Amie Leigh Zimmer, University of Oregon: “Rethinking Chronic Breathlessness Beyond Symptom and Syndrome”
12:15 – 2 p.m. Lunch Break (and graduate student Mentoring Session in Lowenstein 810)
Session 7 – Critical Phenomenologies 1: Work and Freedom
Moderator: Whitney Howell, La Salle University
2 – 2:45 p.m. Talia Welsh, University of Tennessee Chattanooga: “Toward a Critical Phenomenology of Work and Its Discontents”
2:45 – 3:30 p.m. Laura McMahon, Eastern Michigan University: “The ‘Great Phantom’: Merleau-Ponty on Habitus, Freedom, and Political Transformation”
3:30 – 3:45 p.m. Break
Session 8 – Critical Phenomenologies 2: The “I Can”
Moderator: Cheryl Emerson, SUNY Buffalo
3:45 – 4:30 p.m. Kym Maclaren, Ryerson University: “Criminalization and the Self-Constituting Dynamics of Distrust”
4:30 – 5:15 p.m. Joel Reynolds, University of Massachusetts Lowell and Lauren Guilmette, Elon University: “Rethinking the Ableism of Affect Theory with Merleau-Ponty”
5:15 – 5:45 p.m. Snack Break (light refreshments provided)
Friday Keynote
Introduction: Shiloh Whitney, Fordham University
5:45 – 7:15 p.m. Matthew Ratcliffe, York University
“Towards a Phenomenology of Grief: Insights from Merleau-Ponty”

Saturday, September 14 Schedule

8:30 – 9 a.m. Registration and coffee
Session 9 – Feeling Beyond Humanism
Moderator: Wayne Froman, George Mason University
9 – 9:45 a.m. Marie-Eve, Morin, University of Alberta. “Merleau-Ponty’s ‘cautious anthropomorphism’”
9:45 – 10:30 a.m. Jay Worthy, University of Alberta: “Feelings of Adversity: Towards a Critical Humanism”
10:30 – 10:45 a.m. Break
Session 10 – Art and Affect
Moderator: Stephen Watson, Notre Dame
10:45 – 11:30 a.m. Veronique Foti, Pennsylvania State University. “Body, Animality, and Cosmos in the Art of Kiki Smith”
11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Rebecca Longtin, State University of New York New Paltz: “From Stone to Flesh: Affect and the Poetic Ambiguity of the Body”
12:15 – 2:15 p.m. Lunch Break (and Business Lunch at Rosa Mexicano, 61 Columbus Ave)
Session 11 – Voice and Silence
Moderator: Gail Weiss, George Washington University
2:15 – 3 p.m. Susan, Bredlau, Emory University. “Losing One’s Voice: Merleau-Ponty and the Lived Space of Conversation”
3 – 3:45 p.m. Martina, Ferrari, University of Oregon. “The Laboring of Deep Silence: ‘Conceptless Opening(s),’ the Suspension of the Familiar, and the Dismemberment of the Ego”
3:45 – 4 p.m. Break
Session 12 – Affectivity and Language
Moderator: Galen Johnson, University of Rhode Island
4 – 4:45 p.m. Silvana de Souza Ramos, University of São Paulo. “Merleau-Ponty and the Prose of Dora’s World”
4:45 – 5:30 p.m. Katie Emery Brown, University of California Berkeley. “Queer Silence in Merleau-Ponty’s Gesture”
7 – 10 p.m. At Salam, 104 W 13th St.
Thinking Beyond the Annihilation of Nature: Conscientia and Schelling’s Ethics of Redemptive Epistemology. Bruce Matthews, Bard @ Wolff Conference Room, D1106
Oct 17 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

In 1804 Schelling diagnosed our impending “annihilation of nature” due to our conceptual detachment from and consequent economic exploitation of our natural world. His critique of Modernity’s Cartesian Idealisms, effected through his inversion of the Kantian categories, results in a philosophical project whose relevance to our ongoing climate crisis is difficult to overstate.

Bruce Matthews
Bard College/BHSEC, professor of philosophy, research in German Idealism and Romanticism, with a focus on life and thought of F.W.J. Schelling, whose recent work revolves around Schelling’s critique of modernity with its anticipation of, as he wrote in 1804, ‘the annihilation of nature,’ and its relevance to the Anthropocene.

“Schelling in the Anthropocene: A New Mythology of Nature,” (Symposium: Canadian Journal of Continental Philosophy, 2015), “Schelling: A Brief Biographical Sketch of the Odysseus of German Idealism,” in The Palgrave Handbook to German Idealism (2014), and “The New Mythology: Between Romanticism and Humanism,” in The Relevance of Romanticism (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Books include the forthcoming intellectual biography, Schelling: Heretic of Modernity (2018), Schelling’s Organic Form of Philosophy: Life as the Schema of Freedom (SUNY 2011).

Presented by the Philosophy Department at The New School for Social Research

Objectivity and the Humanities – Prospects for a New Realism. Markus Gabriel @ Deutsches Haus at NYU
Oct 21 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Over the last decades, the humanities have come under pressure from the scientific worldview. To many, it seems as if the humanities provide us at best with less-than-objective knowledge claims. Arguably, there are at least two overall reasons for this. On the one hand, the scientific worldview tends to associate objectivity with the kind of knowledge-acquisition, explanation, and justification characteristic of the natural sciences. On the other hand, the humanities themselves have contributed to the impression that they might be less relevant than the natural sciences to epistemic progress due to internal problems having to do with the very concept(s) of knowledge, reality and objectivity.

New Realism is a term for a whole series of current trends in philosophy that has important consequences for our understanding of knowledge in general. In particular, it reshapes our account of the human being qua source and object of knowledge claims. In this context, New Realism draws on a crucial indispensability thesis: we simply cannot eliminate the standpoint from which humans gather information about human and non-human reality alike from our account of reality itself. In light of this thesis, it turns out that the humanities are fully-fledged contributions to objective knowledge about reality – a fact we cannot ignore without succumbing to illusion. Against this background, the talk concludes that the so-called “scientific worldview” is untenable: it is built upon a denial of knowledge we actually possess, and so, by not being scientific enough, it fails to respect its own premises.

About the speaker:

Markus Gabriel holds the chair in epistemology, modern and contemporary philosophy at the University of Bonn. He is the director of the International Center for Philosophy and the multidisciplinary Center for Science and Thought. With Jocelyn Benoist he also directs Bonn-Paris Center for Research on New Realisms. His work focuses on contemporary philosophy, in particular epistemology and ontology, in an attempt to spell out the consequences of various trends in philosophy in a conversation with the humanities. Currently, he is working on a book called Fictions which deals with topics at the intersection of philosophy, literary studies and sociology.

The NYU Department of German and Deutsches Haus at NYU present “Objectivity and the Humanities – Prospects for a New Realism,” a talk by Professor Markus Gabriel.

Attendance information:

Events at Deutsches Haus are free of charge. If you would like to attend this event, please send us an email to Space at Deutsches Haus is limited; please arrive ten minutes prior to the event. Thank you!

Objectivity and the Humanities – Prospects for a New Realism” is a DAAD-supported event.

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).

Symposium on Brian Cantwell Smith’s The Promise of Artificial Intelligence: Reckoning and Judgment (MIT Press, 2019) @ Kellen Auditorium, Room N101
Dec 6 all-day

Selected speakers:

Zed Adams

The New School

Brian Cantwell Smith

University of Toronto, St. George

Mazviita Chirimuuta

University of Pittsburgh
1st Graduate Conference in Political Theory @ Politics Dept. New School
Mar 6 – Mar 7 all-day

The Politics department at the New School for Social Research will host its 1st Graduate Conference in Political Theory on March 6-7th, 2020.

We are launching this event to provide graduate students in the history of political thought, political theory and political philosophy an opportunity to present and receive feedback on their work. A total of six (6) papers will be accepted and each of them will receive substantial comments from a New School graduate student, to be followed by a general discussion. We welcome submissions from all traditions, but we are particularly interested in providing a venue for those students working on critical approaches. We would also like to encourage applications from under-represented groups in the field.

We are delighted to announce that Professor Robyn Marasco (Hunter College, City University of New York) will deliver the inaugural keynote address.

Submissions for the conference are due by December 10th, 2019. Papers should not exceed 8,000 words (excluding footnotes and bibliography) and should be sent in PDF format with the help of the electronic form provided below. Papers should be formatted for blind review with no identifying information. Abstracts will not be accepted. A Google account is needed in order to sign-in to the submission form; if you don’t have one, please email us. Papers will be reviewed over the winter break and notifications will be sent out early January 2020.

For any questions, please contact

Mind, Body, Passion. NYC Workshop in Early Modern Philosophy @ Fordham U. Philosophy Dept.
Apr 18 – Apr 19 all-day

The workshop, which is now in its 10th year, aims to foster exchange and collaboration among scholars, students, and anyone with an interest in Early Modern Philosophy. This year’s workshop will focus on the topic of “Mind, Body, Passion” in Early Modern Philosophy (roughly the period from 1600-1800).

We welcome submissions on the conference topic, which may be broadly construed to include mind-body identity, mind-body interaction, embodiment, philosophy of emotion, aesthetics, etc. For consideration, please submit abstracts of 250-300 words to no later than December 31, 2019.

Keynote speakers:

New York University
University of Toronto at Mississauga


Fordham University
Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan
Fordham University