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Philosophy Reading Groups

Early Chinese Philosophy Reading Group

This reading group proposes to approach Chinese Philosophy in its own terms, without imposing Western philosophical reference systems on it. Convergences and divergences between the two philosophical traditions will be discussed in a comparative way. It is our goal to create a space of exchange and learning that will enable all to join and get something from it. Therefore, everyone is welcome. No previous knowledge of Chinese thought and language is required, as we will use English translations of the classics. It will however be one of the goals of the reading group to develop an awareness of the particular meaning of certain Chinese terms, so as to not lose too much in translation.

This year we will invite scholars from other institutions to present their research and to discuss general topics in Chinese Philosophy. As a consequence, we will not focus on a single text. Reading material will be circulated before the meetings. For a general introduction to Chinese Philosophy we recommend Karyn Lai’s An introduction to Chinese philosophy (Cambridge University Press, 2008).

Everybody welcome!

Time and location: Alternate Mondays (from week 2) between 3.00pm and 4.30pm on MS Teams

Contact: Max Lacertosa to receive further information.

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Law and Morality in Early 20th Century Marxism

In this reading group, we examine the relationship of law and morality through the eyes of early 20th century Marxist literature. This was a time of acute crisis in Western political history. The workers’ movement was in tumult, with the ruination of the 2nd International, the repression of revolutionary fervour in Europe, and the rise of fascism. As old powers crumbled and others arose, the moral status of law came into focus. A new radicalism asked out loud: Is there anything inherently good about the legal order?

In each session, we relate the selected literature to philosophical problems surrounding state, law, and morality. Among other things, we will discuss the critique of natural law, examine the link between history and moral judgments, and have a closer look at the Marxist notion of ideology.

No prior knowledge is required; open debate is highly encouraged. Each session will focus on one text (see below). Digital copies of the texts will be provided on Teams, some also in an abridged version (at least one week in advance). Ross or Simon will provide a brief introduction to each text, then there is roughly one hour for discussion.

 Contact: Ross Ferrara (ross.ferrara@warwick.ac.uk) and Simon Gansinger (simon.gansinger@warwick.ac.uk)

 Time and location: All sessions on Wednesdays, 16:00-17:00 on MS Teams.

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Wittgenstein Reading Club

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines.

We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Time and location: Fridays (starting 15/10/2021) 1:00-2:30pm, location TBC

Contact: Thomas Williams to receive further information and get the link to participate.

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Women in the History of Philosophy Reading Group

Scholars are becoming increasingly aware of the exclusion of women in the historiography of philosophy. The aim of this group is to read overlooked works by women philosophers in order to (1) help us rethink the questions that motivated and underpinned the development of philosophy, (2) reveal the ways in which philosophy has been practiced in dialogue with, rather than in abstraction from, our daily lives, and (3) unearth the dynamics of power that are often overlooked by those with positional advantage. The group will provide the opportunity to develop a critical relation to the field, and use material sources question philosophy's canon.

Our text for Term 1 will be Amalia Holst's 'On the Vocation of Woman to Higher Intellectual Development' (1802). Holst was a teacher at a progressive school for girls in Hamburg. Her major work defends equal educational opportunities for women, and exposes inequalities that remained unquestioned by the key figures of the German Enlightenment. It has been almost entirely overlooked by philosophers, and will be read in English translation for the first time.

Everyone welcome!

Time and location: Fridays 15:00-16:00 on MS Teams.

Term 1 will be held online.

Contact: Andrew Cooper to receive further information.

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Race and Philosophy Reading Group

All students and staff are invited to the Race and Philosophy Reading Group, organised in collaboration with Warwick MAP. The theme for 2021/2022 is Intersectionality.

Time and location: the Group will meet Fridays in weeks 2, 4, 6 and 8 in Term 1, at 4pm-5.15pm.

Contact: eileen.john@warwick.ac.uk

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The Moral and Political Philosophy Reading Group

This group will focus on reading key Moral and Political philosophical texts. This year we are reading Hegel's Philosophy of Right published in 1821. This work has been described by Stephen Houlgate as 'one of the greatest works of social and political philosophy ever written.' The book traces the true realization of freedom and free will via Hegel's immanent process of dialectics. Arguably, this book is still pertinent and relevant for our times: not only does it acknowledge that freedom can be enhanced by economic opportunities, but, moreover, it recognizes that unregulated capitalism is a cause of alienation, inequality and poverty.

Everybody welcome!

Time and location: Wednesdays, 6pm-7.30pm

Contact: Andrew Paull to receive further information and get the link to participate.

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Wed 27 Oct, '21
-
Moral and Philosophical Reading Group

Please contact Andrew J Paull for further information.

Thu 28 Oct, '21
-
'Getting Acquainted With Art' by Matt Duncan and Hannah Nahas
By Zoom

Getting Acquainted with Art 

By Matt Duncan and Hannah Nahas 

We learn from art. By viewing, hearing, touching, creating, performing, and in yet other ways interacting with art, we gain new knowledge—knowledge that we wouldn’t have had, and perhaps couldn’t have had, without encountering that art. That’s obvious. But what is less obvious is the nature, or structure, of this knowledge—what constitutes it. A standard assumption in contemporary analytic philosophy is that all knowledge is and must be propositional—that is, constituted by beliefs in propositions. However, this assumption, despite being standard, has come under attack in recent years. One front in this attack comes from aesthetics and philosophy of art, where some philosophers have claimed that some knowledge gained from art is non-propositional. In this paper we will fortify and expand this front by giving new reasons to think that some knowledge from art is indeed non-propositional and is instead “knowledge of things,” which is constituted, not by beliefs in propositions, but by awareness of properties and objects. We will also fill a gap in the contemporary literature by giving an account of this knowledge—of its nature, structure, and relation to other knowledge.

 

Fri 29 Oct, '21
-
Wittgenstein Reading Group
H0.43 (to join via teams contact Thomas Williams

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines. We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Please contact Thomas Williams for further information

Thomas.Williams.1@warwick.ac.uk

Fri 29 Oct, '21
-
Women in the History of Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams

Contact Andrew Cooper for further information.

Fri 29 Oct, '21
-
Race and Philosophy Reading Group: Intersectionality
MS Teams

Week 4: Friday 29 October 2021 - Charles Mills, '"Ideal Theory" as Ideology'

For more information (and if you need help joining the Team), contact Eileen John (eileen.john@warwick.ac.uk).

Tue 2 Nov, '21
-
Post-Kantian European Philosophy Research Seminar Series
MS Teams

Guest Speaker: Tuomo Tiisala (Helsinki)

Title: 'Truth, the Whole Truth, and Politics and Truth: Foucault on the Revaluation of Values'

Wed 3 Nov, '21
-
Reading Group: Law and Morality in Early 20th Century Marxism
MS Teams

Law and Morality in Early 20th Century Marxism 

In this reading group, we examine the relationship of law and morality through the eyes of early 20th century Marxist literature. This was a time of acute crisis in Western political history. The workers’ movement was in tumult, with the ruination of the 2nd International, the repression of revolutionary fervour in Europe, and the rise of fascism. As old powers crumbled and others arose, the moral status of law came into focus. A new radicalism asked out loud: Is there anything inherently good about the legal order?

In each session, we relate the selected literature to philosophical problems surrounding state, law, and morality. Among other things, we will discuss the critique of natural law, examine the link between history and moral judgments, and have a closer look at the Marxist notion of ideology.

No prior knowledge is required; open debate is highly encouraged. Each session will focus on one text (see below). Digital copies of the texts will be provided on Teams, some also in an abridged version (at least one week in advance). Ross or Simon will provide a brief introduction to each text, then there is roughly one hour for discussion.

1st session: 3 November 2021

Karl Marx (1843): “On the Jewish question.” In Marx and Engels Collected Works, vol. 3, 146–174. London: Lawrence & Wishart, 1975.

 

Ross Ferrara (ross.ferrara@warwick.ac.uk)

Simon Gansinger (simon.gansinger@warwick.ac.uk)

 

Wed 3 Nov, '21
-
Department of Philosophy Colloquium
MS Teams

Guest Speaker: Robert Brandom (Pittsburgh)

Title: 'The Fine Structure of Autonomy and Recognition'

Wed 3 Nov, '21
-
Moral and Philosophical Reading Group

Please contact Andrew J Paull for further information.

Thu 4 Nov, '21
-
Postgraduate Work in Progress Seminar
MS Teams

Speaker to be confirmed.

Fri 5 Nov, '21
-
Wittgenstein Reading Group
H0.43 (to join via teams contact Thomas Williams)

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines. We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Please contact Thomas Williams for further information

Thomas.Williams.1@warwick.ac.uk

Fri 5 Nov, '21
-
Women in the History of Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams

Contact Andrew Cooper for further information.

Mon 8 Nov, '21
-
Chinese Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams
Wed 10 Nov, '21
-
Moral and Philosophical Reading Group

Please contact Andrew J Paull for further information.

Fri 12 Nov, '21
-
Wittgenstein Reading Group
H0.43 (to join via teams contact Thomas Williams)

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines. We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Please contact Thomas Williams for further information

Thomas.Williams.1@warwick.ac.uk

Fri 12 Nov, '21
-
Women in the History of Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams

Contact Andrew Cooper for further information.

Fri 12 Nov, '21
-
Race and Philosophy Reading Group: Intersectionality
MS Teams

Week 6: Friday 12 November 2021 - The Poetry of Audre Lorde, with an Interview conducted by Karla Hammond

For more information (and if you need help joining the Team), contact Eileen John (eileen.john@warwick.ac.uk).

Wed 17 Nov, '21
-
Department of Philosophy EWC
MS Teams
Wed 17 Nov, '21
-
Reading Group: Law and Morality in Early 20th Century Marxism
MS Teams

2nd session: 17 November 2021

Karl Korsch (1923): Marxism and Philosophy. London: NLB, 1970.

Wed 17 Nov, '21
-
Post-Kantian European Philosophy Research Seminar Series
MS Teams

Guest Speaker: Johanna Oksala (Loyola, University of Chicago)

Title: 'The Subjects of Capitalism: From Marx to Foucault'

Wed 17 Nov, '21
-
Moral and Philosophical Reading Group

Please contact Andrew J Paull for further information.

Thu 18 Nov, '21
-
Postgraduate Work in Progress Seminar
MS Teams

Speaker to be confirmed.

Fri 19 Nov, '21
-
Wittgenstein Reading Group
H0.43 (to join via teams contact Thomas Williams)

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines. We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Please contact Thomas Williams for further information

Thomas.Williams.1@warwick.ac.uk

Fri 19 Nov, '21
-
Women in the History of Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams

Contact Andrew Cooper for further information.

Sat 20 Nov, '21
Warwick Mind and Action UG Conference 2021
By Zoom

This conference is an opportunity for Undergraduates present some of your best work, and to discuss it with leading academics, graduate students, and your undergrad peers from other universities. If you’re considering applying for graduate work in philosophy, this would be an excellent opportunity to get feedback on a potential work sample, or just to develop some of your ideas in conversation with other philosophers interested in the same topics as you (and let’s be honest, a conference talk on your CV won’t look bad!).

You don’t need to be applying for further study (in philosophy, or at all) to apply, of course – you might just fancy the opportunity to discover some new topics, to meet new likeminded people, to hone your presentation skills, or just to discuss, debate, and argue the day away (as it befits a philosopher to do). Philosophy conferences are one of the main ways in which professional philosophy ‘gets done’. So perhaps you’re just curious to see how they work, and to be involved in a conference at undergraduate level.

Topics

The conference is organised by the Warwick Mind and Action Research Centre (WMA). WMA is the centre in the Warwick Philosophy Department for research in the philosophy of mind and action, ‘broadly construed’, and interdisciplinary work with psychology. We take ‘broadly construed’ seriously! You are encouraged to apply to give a talk in any of the following areas of philosophy:

  • philosophy of mind
  • philosophy of action/moral psychology
  • epistemology
  • history of philosophy
  • philosophy of psychology or psychiatry
  • philosophy of language
  • interdisciplinary work with all branches of psychology.

The plan for the day:

The undergraduate sessions

There will be 3 undergraduate sessions, each lasting 1 hour – 30 mins for the talk itself, and 30 mins for discussion.

‘Further study in philosophy’ information session

An optional session for delegates interested in further study in philosophy. The session is an opportunity to get a sense of the difference between the various higher degrees (MA, MPhil, PhD), what they each involve, what to think about if you’re keen to apply for any of them, how funding works, and so on. You’ll be able to ask any other questions you might have too.

Keynote lecture

A talk by a WMA academic, followed by discussion.

Mon 22 Nov, '21
-
Chinese Philosophy Reading Group
MS Teams
Wed 24 Nov, '21
-
Reading Group: Law and Morality in Early 20th Century Marxism
MS Teams

3rd session: 24 November 2021

Evgeny Pashukanis (1924): “Law and morality.” In Law and Marxism: A General Theory, 151–165. London: Ink Links, 1978.

Wed 24 Nov, '21
-
Department of Philosophy Colloquium
MS Teams

Guest Speaker: Kristin Andrews (York/Toronto)

Title: 'Do Animals Have the Mark of the Moral'?

Wed 24 Nov, '21
-
Moral and Philosophical Reading Group

Please contact Andrew J Paull for further information.

Fri 26 Nov, '21
-
Wittgenstein Reading Group
H0.43 (to join via teams contact Thomas Williams)

Wittgenstein is one of the 20th century's most influential philosophers and the source of many divergent reactions and interpretations. This reading group will focus on a close-reading of Philosophical Investigations in the first term (where appropriate dipping into secondary texts in order to interpret certain sections.) Depending on how far we get in the first term, we will try to read another Wittgenstein text (up to the groups preference). We will be focusing on reading Wittgenstein's philosophy in itself, rather than his relation to other thinkers and disciplines. We hope to meet weekly, but want to be as flexible as possible. For the first week, we will try to read §§1-45. We suggest the dual language Revised Fourth edition by P. M. S. Hacker and Joachim Schulte, but feel free to use whatever copy is available to you.

Please contact Thomas Williams for further information

Thomas.Williams.1@warwick.ac.uk

Start a new reading group

If you wish to start a reading group, please complete this form. If you need help booking a room please email philosophyoffice@warwick.ac.uk