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philosophy

DEPARTMENT NEWS

PHILOSOPHY MAJORS

Advising for Fall 2016 begins Monday, March 22.

Make an appointment with a Philosophy Advisor at iAdvise.ou.edu

  • Jason Baehr Visits April 22nd

    Jason Baehr, Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University and 2012 John Templeton Foundation Grantee, will visit on April 22nd as part of our 2015-2016 colloquium series. This lecture will take place at 2:30pm in Dale Hall Tower Rm. 607. Here are the title and abstract for his presentation:

    Title: "Intellectual Virtues, Critical Thinking, and the Aim of Education"

    Abstract: Since around the turn of the century, epistemologists have been paying considerably more attention to the upper normative boundaries of the cognitive life, for example, to intellectual character virtues like curiosity, open-mindedness, and intellectual courage and to estimable and complex cognitive states like understand and wisdom. This broader, normatively-oriented focus has begun to generate fruitful interactions between epistemologists and philosophers of education, the latter seeing the former as concerned with certain vital educational aims. The present paper is a contribution to this incipient dialogue. I address two main questions. First, how exactly are intellectual virtues related to the familiar educational goal of critical thinking? Second, in light of this relation, which (if either) is a more suitable educational ideal? With respect to the first question, Harvey Siegel has recently defended a deep distinction between intellectual virtues and critical thinking, such that a person can possess intellectual virtues while being poor at critical thinking. I argue against this claim. In doing so, I attempt to shed light on the exact sense in which the skills proper to intellectual virtues implicate the skills proper to critical thinking. With respect to the second question, I offer a few reasons for thinking that the fostering of intellectual virtues may be a better educational aim than the fostering of critical thinking. I also address some of Siegel’s arguments to the contrary.

    Special Thanks to the College of Arts and Sciences and the Institute for the Study of Human Flourishing for their financial support for this event.

    For accommodations on the basis of disability or more information call 405/325-6324 or email philosophy@ou.edu.

  • Congratulations to Amy Olberding and Hugh Benson!

    Amy Olberding and Hugh Benson each received impressive awards at the 2016 OU Faculty Awards Ceremony!

    Amy Olberding was awarded the President's Associates Presidential Professorship, and Hugh Benson was awarded the George Lynn Cross Research Professorship. Well done, Amy and Hugh!

  • Anthony Flood Visits April 8th

    Anthony Flood, Associate Professor of Philosophy at North Dakota State University, will visit on April 8th as part of our 2015-2016 colloquium series. This lecture will take place at 2:30pm in Dale Hall Tower Rm. 607. Here are the title and abstract for his presentation:

    Title: "Aquinas on Omnisubjectivity: An Addendum to Zagzebski"

    Abstract: Linda Zagzebski has recently offered a compelling overview and defense of the notion of omnisubjectivity as a divine attribute. She defines omnisubjectivity as “the property of consciously grasping with perfect accuracy and completeness every conscious state of every creature from that creature’s first person perspective.” She contends that this notion is consistent with Thomas Aquinas’s concept of God. In this paper, I go one step further and argue that Aquinas already includes such a notion within his account. I begin by arguing that Aquinas’s view of the human being contains a rich view of human subjectivity and that this account connects to his notion of each person’s participation in God. Finally, I show how these considerations establish that divine omniscience involves omnisubjectivity.

    Special thanks to the College of Arts and Sciences for their financial support for this event.

    For accommodations on the basis of disability or more information call 405/325-6324 or email philosophy@ou.edu.

  • Congratulations to Linda Zagzebski!

    Linda Zagzebski gave the prestigious John Dewey lecture at the 2016 Pacific APA meeting.

    John Dewey was an American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer whose ideas have been influential in education and social reform. The John Dewey lectures, generously sponsored by the John Dewey Foundation, are presented annually at each APA divisional meeting. Each John Dewey lecture is given by a prominent and senior philosopher associated with that division who is invited to reflect, broadly and in an autobiographical spirit, on philosophy in America.

    Well done, Linda!

  • David Wong Visits March 11th

    David Wong, Susan Fox Beischer and George D. Beischer Professor of Philosophy at Duke University, will visit on March 11th as part of our 2015-2016 colloquium series. This lecture will take place at 2:30pm in Dale Hall Tower Rm. 607. Here are the title and abstract for his presentation:

    Title: "Relativism and Ambivalence between Relationship and Autonomy”

    Abstract: Disagreement over moral values have long been a ground for argument as to whether there is a single true morality. Philosophers have arrived at opposite conclusions based on their analysis of the nature of moral disagreement. With very few exceptions, they have drawn their conclusions about the nature of disagreement in a largely a priori and exceedingly abstract manner This talk is a plea for more concrete consideration of the way that values are instantiated within moral traditions such as Confucianism. I will examine in particular the implications of a Confucian ethic, as it appears in classical Confucian philosophers, for conflicts between the moral values of relationship and autonomy. I will criticize a certain stereotype of ethics that apparently value relationship and community over individual autonomy, e.g., that the individual is subordinated to the group. I will argue that a more careful consideration of how relationship is valued and the way the individual is conceived in relationship to the group can produced a warranted response of “moral ambivalence:” a weakening of confidence that there is a single correct way to resolve conflicts between all major moral values.

    Special thanks to the College of Arts and Sciences for their financial support for this event.

    For accommodations on the basis of disability or more information call 405/325-6324 or email philosophy@ou.edu.

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