The Noûsletter contains an archive of our department's news and events. We have every edition of the Noûsletter, published between 1990 and the present, available to download as a pdf. Alumni are invited to send updates to us for inclusion in the next edition.
The Confucius Institute and the Department of Philosophy at the University at Buffalo are pleased to announce a Symposium on Chinese Philosophy in Memory of Jiyuan Yu on Friday, November 3, 2017. The event is free and open to the public.
Timothy Connolly, East Stroudsburg University
Yong Huang, Chinese University of Hong Kong
Yi Jiang, Beijing Normal University
Richard Kim, Saint Louis University
JeeLoo Liu, California State University, Fullerton
Kang Ouyang, Huazhong University of Science and Technology
Yi Wang, Sichuan International Studies University
Jinmei Yuan, Creighton University
UB Philosophy Organizers:
Jorge J. E. Gracia
Neil E. Williams
February 1, 2018, Thursday, 4:00, p.m., Park 141
John Greco (Saint Louis University)
Title: "Intellectual Humility and Contemporary Epistemology: A critique of epistemic individualism, evidentialism and internalism"
Abstract: Contemporary epistemology has moved away from the epistemic individualism of internalism and evidentialism, in favor of externalism, virtue epistemology, and social epistemology. This paper explores how these various movements in epistemology are related to the notion of intellectual humility. The central idea is that, whereas intellectual pride is characterized by ideals and illusions of self-sufficiency, intellectual humility is characterized by a realistic estimation of one’s own abilities and an appreciation of one’s epistemic dependence on others.
March 1, 2018, Thursday, 4:00, p.m., Park 141
Charles Goodman (SUNY Binghamton)
Title: "How Emotions Deceive: Śāntideva's Moral Psychology Today"
Abstract: Most of us strongly favor our own interests, and those of the people we care about, over even the urgent needs of distant others. When people we care about are wrongly harmed, most of us feel anger towards the wrongdoers and believe that they deserve to suffer. Many philosophers endorse these patterns of thought and feeling, regarding them as rational, appropriate, and even virtuous. The Buddhist philosopher Śāntideva (late 7th – mid 8th cent. CE) would disagree, claiming that such thoughts and feelings are cognitively and normatively distorted and erroneous. Several arguments will be considered that support Śāntideva’s views on these questions. Śāntideva may have been the first author in history to state a version of utilitarianism clearly and develop its implications systematically. We now know that utilitarianism often has counterintuitive implications in contexts involving aggregating benefits and burdens across numerous sentient beings. The question of aggregation will be considered in light of Frances Kamm’s “one billion birds” example from Intricate Ethics, Richard Wilbur’s poem “Advice to a Prophet,” and the empirical phenomenon of “compassion collapse.” This discussion reveals a possible role that poetry could play in defending consequentialist ethics.
March 21, 2018, "The Crisis of Western Democracy"
Jobst Landgrebe, Cognotekt, Cologne, Germany
509 O’Brian Hall, UB North Campus
Organized by Barry Smith
Co-sponsored by the Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy
About the guest speaker: Dr. Jobst Landgrebe, Cognotekt founder and shareholder. Doctor and mathematician, 16 years of experience in the field of artificial intelligence, eight years as a management consultant and software architect. Specialised in the design and implementation of holistic AI solutions. Experienced in the insurance industry.
April 5, Thursday, 4:00, p.m., Park 141
Janice Dowell (Syracuse)
Title: "The Linguistic Case for Expressivism Reconsidered"
Abstract: A notable absence in the metaethical defense of expressivism about normative language has been distinctively linguistic data. In a series of recent papers, Yalcin aims to fill this gap, arguing against any descriptivist semantics for epistemic modal expressions, on the grounds that it is unable to fit with our judgments about sentences of the form ‘j and might not j’ and ‘the F might not be F’. From the need for a non-descriptivist semantics for epistemic modals, Yalcin argues for a complimentary semantics for the deontic ones. Here I provide new data against which to test Yalcin’s claims, showing how Kratzer’s canonical contextualist semantics, a form of descriptivism, is compatible with the full range of data. Thus, Yalcin’s data do not provide new, linguistic grounds for expressivism.
April 19, 2018
Karen Bennett (Cornell)
Title: "Kinds of Kinds"
Abstract: Philosophers and ordinary people talk about kinds all the time. Yet the philosophical literature has almost entirely focused on natural kinds. People just help themselves to the notion of a kind, and fret about what naturalness might be. In this talk, I back up a step and ask, what are kinds, anyway?
Bio: Professor Karen Bennett works largely in metaphysics, with occasional excursions into philosophy of mind. She is the author of a variety of articles on constitution, modality, mereology, metametaphysics, and the like. Last summer, her book Making Things Up came out with Oxford University Press. It is about the family of relations whereby less fundamental things are generated from more fundamental things, and about what that kind of fundamentality talk comes to.
April 20, 2018
Capabilities: Human and Machine workshop hosted by Barry Smith. As information technology becomes involved in ever more aspects of healthcare, manufacturing and other industries, the ability to reason with capabilities information will become ever more important. This workshop aims to advance the understanding of what capabilities are and of how they should be represented in information systems.
May 3, 2018
Pamela Hieronymi (UCLA)
My research sits at the intersection of many different subfields: ethics, philosophy of mind, philosophy of action, and the lively discussion of moral responsibility and free will.
February 3, Celebration of the Life and Legacy of Jiyuan Yu
Event hosted by Professor Neil E. Williams, Chair, UB CAS Department of Philosophy, and Professor Stephen C. Dunnett, UB Vice Provost for International Education and Chair, Confucius Institute, Board of Advisors
3:00 pm, Center for the Arts, Screening Room and Atrium Reception
February 3, Friday, 12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture
Tim Connolly (East Stroudsburg University)
February 10, Friday, 12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture, Andrew Pfeuffer (University at Buffalo)
February 16, Thursday, 4:00 p.m, 141 Park Hall
Tuomas Tahko (University of Helsinki)
"Where Do You Get Your Protein? (Or: Biochemical Realization)"
February 17, Friday, 12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture, Shane Hemmer (University at Buffalo)
February 24, Friday12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture, Botan Dolun (University at Buffalo)
March 2, Thursday, 4:00 p.m., 141 Park Hall, UB North Campus
Buffalo Logic Colloquium,
Matt LaVine (SUNY Potsdam) "The History of Logic (and Ethics)"
March 3, Friday, 12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture, Paul Poenicke (University at Buffalo)
March 9, Thursday, 4:00 p.m., 141 Park Hall, UB North Campus
Buffalo Logic Colloquium
Julian Cole, Buffalo State College
"Institutions and Abstract Objects"
March 10, Friday, 12 Noon, 141 Park Hall
Brown Box Lecture, Hun Chung (Rochester)
April 27, Thursday, 4:00 pm, 141 Park Hall, UB North Campus
Buffalo Logic Colloquium
John Corcoran (University at Buffalo)
"Sentence, Proposition, Judgment, Statement, and Fact: Speaking about the Written English Used in Logic"
The Romanell Bioethics and Philosophy of Medicine Center presents:
Dr. Patrick Lee, John N. and Jamie D. McAleer Professor of Bioethics
Director, Institute of Bioethics, Franciscan University of Steubenville
"Rational Nature as the Basis of Being a Subject of Rights"
Lecture, 4:30-6:00 pm, Park Hall 141
“Distinguishing between What is Intended and Foreseen Side Effects”
Workshop, 7:00-10:00 pm, Location TBA
For more information contact: David B. Hershenov, firstname.lastname@example.org
The theme of the 2017 Romanell Conference on Bioethics and Philosophy of Medicine is "Personal Identity and Our Origins." Join us as we welcome three distinguished keynote speakers:
As in past years, the conference will also feature current graduate students, UB Philosophy alums, as well as philosophy faculty members of UB and other institutions in Western New York.
June 18, 2016, Park Hall, 280, UB North Campus, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
10:00-11:00. Keynote Address: Steve Kershnar. “Internalism and Moral Responsibility: Cutting responsibility down to size
11:15-12:15. Plenary Address I: David Hershenov. "Is Health the key to Autonomy?"
12:15-1:15 Lunch Break
1:15-2:15 Award Winning Graduate Student Essay: Rob Kelly, "Manipulation and Compatibilism: Why Appealing to Health Is Not the Cure."
2:30- 3:30 Award Winning Graduate Student Essay. David Limbaugh. “Could we Perform Evil Actions When We Never Would? An Essay on God, Agency, and Dispositional Modality”
3:45-4:45. Best International Submission: Yishai Cohen. "A Manipulation Argument for Deliberation Incompatibilism".
5:00-6:00 Plenary Address II: John Keller. “The Mother of All Design Arguments”
For more information contact email@example.com
July 28, Thursday, 11:00am to 6:00pm
July 29, Friday, 9:30am to 6:00pm
4:40pm: David Boonin
Keynote Speaker, "Posthumous Harm"
July 30, Saturday, 9:00am to 7:00pm
3:15pm: Elselijn Kingma
Keynote Speaker, "The Metaphysics of Pregnancy"
5:30pm: Barry Smith
"The Metaphysics of the Embryo"
Thursday, October 22
Knox 109 Lecture Hall
Debate featuring philosophy professors:
John Keller, Niagara University
Stephen Kershnar, SUNY Fredonia
The event is free and open to the public.
Tuesday, September 29
Knox 110 Lecture Hall
Debate featuring PhD students:
Brendan Cline & Jake Monaghan
The event is free and open to the public.
Location: Seminar Room, 640 Clemens Hall, UB North Campus
Time: 4:00 to 6:00pm - all lectures are free and open to the public
October 19, Monday
Lecture 1 - Facing the Fire: On Mr. James Baldwin and Others
October 20, Tuesday
Lecture 2 - Facing Foolishness: On Philosophy and the Academy
October 21, Wednesday
Lecture 3 - Facing the Future: What Will Happen To All That Beauty?
Jorge J. E. Gracia, SUNY Distinguished Professor
Samuel P. Capen Chair
About the speaker: Paul C. Taylor teaches philosophy at Pennsylvania State University, where he also directs the Program on Philosophy After Apartheid at the Rock Ethics Institute. Professor Taylor received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Morehouse College and his Ph.D. in philosophy from Rutgers University. He writes on aesthetics, race theory, Africana philosophy, pragmatism, and social philosophy, and is the author of the book Race: A Philosophical Introduction (Polity, 2004). He has recently co-edited a special issue of The Journal of Social Philosophy (with Ronald Sundstrom) on critical philosophy of race, and is currently at work on a book called Black is Beautiful: A Philosophy of Black Aesthetics (under contract, Blackwell).
Hosted by the Experimental Epistemology Research Group.
Featuring Thomas Nadelhoffer, College of Charleston
Organizers: Robert Kelly and James Beebe (Experimental Epistemology Research Group, University at Buffalo). The event is sponsored by the Peter Hare Memorial Fund and the University at Buffalo Department of Philosophy.
For details, see contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, July 30: 10:00am to 6:00pm
Friday, July 31, 9:00am to 5:00pm, with keynotes at 1:45 and 3:45
Saturday, August 1, 9:00am to 5:00pm, with keynotes at 1:45 and 3:45
Location: Park Hall, Room 280, North Campus
April 16, Debate: Does evil provide evidence against the existence of God?
Speaker: Dr. Loren Goldner, editor of Insurgent Notes; writer and activist based in New York City. Many of his writings are available at Break Their Haughty Power.org Loren Goldner is also the author of Vanguard of Retrogression (2011), and Herman Melville: Between Charlemagne and The Antemosaic Cosmic Man (2006)
Date: Thursday, March 12
Time: 5:00 to 7:00pm
Location: 212 Norton Hall, UB North Campus
The event is sponsored by "The Marxist Reading Group"
Keynote Speakers: Jennifer Nagel (University of Toronto) and John Turri (University of Waterloo)
Organizers: Jake Monaghan, Neil Otte, and James Beebe (Experimental Epistemology Research Group, University at Buffalo).
The event is sponsored by the Peter Hare Memorial Fund and the Dept. of Philosophy at the University at Buffalo (SUNY). Contact: email@example.com
Experimental Epistemology Research Group (EERG)
The 2014 PANTC conference organized by Jim Delaney and David Hershenov will take place on Friday, August 1, and Saturday, August 2, in Park Hall 280, UB North Campus.
Keynote speaker: Professor Christopher Boorse, University at Delaware
Christopher Boorse will give talks on both days based on the following papers:
Conference presentations are based upon the following papers, available for preview: