23 December 2010

hurry up and finish your dissertation

you have until May:


20 December 2010

CFP: Northwestern Ethics Conference

Note that this is annual, in case you can't make this year's deadline.
5th Annual Conference
May 19–21, 2011

Keynote Speakers:
Philip PETTIT (Princeton)
R. Jay WALLACE (Berkeley)

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES: The deadline is February 15, 2011. We welcome 
submissions from faculty and graduate students, as some sessions will be 
reserved for student presentations. Please submit an essay of 
approximately 4000 words and an abstract of at most 150 words. Essay 
topics in all areas of ethical theory and political philosophy will be 
considered, although some priority will be given to essays that take up 
themes from the works of Philip Pettit and R. Jay Wallace, such as 
responsibility, practical reasoning, freedom, democratic theory, 
constructivism, contractualism, individual agency, and collective 
agency. Essays and abstracts should be prepared for blind review in 
word, rtf, or pdf format. Graduate submissions should be sent by email 
to leegoldsmith2012@u.northwestern.edu; faculty submissions should be 
sent by e-mail to garthoff@northwestern.edu. Notices of acceptance will 
be sent by March 31, 2011. For more information, please contact Jon 
Garthoff at the e-mail address above or visit our website: 

17 December 2010

cfp: graduate conference in political theory at princeton

Graduate Conference in Political Theory           
Princeton University
April 8-9, 2011

The Committee for the Graduate Conference in Political Theory at Princeton University welcomes papers concerning any period, methodological approach or topic in political theory, political philosophy, or the history of political thought.  Approximately eight papers will be accepted.

philosophers rule

yes we do:


h/t Leiter

critical reasoning for beginners

for free on itunes:


I guess there's a lot of other stuff, too.  hmmm.

14 December 2010

middlebury dissertation fellowship

Middlebury College invites applications for a dissertation fellowship for the academic year 2011-12. We are seeking graduate students with a clear commitment and ability to advance educational diversity, either through the nature of their scholarly work, or through their ability to model success in fields where their own backgrounds and experiences may be underrepresented. Fellows will receive teaching and research mentorship from faculty committed to excellence in undergraduate education.  Fellows will be hosted by an appropriate department or program, and will be expected to teach one one-semester course, normally in the fall semester.   Fellows may apply to extend their fellowships to a second year.  The annual stipend for the position is $30,000.  Ph.D. candidates must have completed all doctoral work except the dissertation by the end of the current academic year. For further information and application details, please visit:


Applications are due by January 21, 2011.  Inquiries should be sent to Susan Burch at dfp@middlebury.edu .

Middlebury College is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to recruiting a diverse faculty to complement its increasingly diverse student body.



11 December 2010

learning from mistakes



“My teacher has several good ways to explain each topic that we cover in this class.”
and skillful at maintaining classroom order, but I hope that doesn't have much to do with us

of course this may be false: "'Kids know effective teaching when they experience it,' he said"
since the survey asks about what happens in the classroom, not what's effective.  they have to correlate the survey results with learning outcomes for it to be meaningful.

10 December 2010

CFP: freedom and power

A Journal of Social and Political Theory

‘Freedom and Power’ Call for Papers

Ever since Livy proclaimed that ‘freedom is to be in one’s own power’, if not from a long time before, the relationship between freedom and power has been an enduring concern of political theorists. It has withstood even Berlin’s sharp distinctions between seemingly irreconcilable kinds of freedom and the subsequent diversion via debates about ‘negative, ‘positive’ and ‘republican’ freedom. With greater historical purview it is possible to see that the fault line between various competing conceptions of freedom is clearest with regard to how social and political theorists conceive of the relationship between freedom and power. While some thinkers have opposed freedom and power, arguing that liberty can only be truly attained free from power and domination (republicans) or in the absence of external impediments imposed by other human beings (liberals), others have identified a close and intriguing link between them, especially in the sphere of politics. A motley crew of radicals, Marxists and conservatives occupy the latter camp, including Livy, Machiavelli, Montaigne, Marx, Nietzsche and Foucault. Moreover, those in the former camp tend to think of freedom in formal and abstract terms, while proponents of the latter eschew this now normal tendency in political philosophy and instead think of freedom in fully substantive, concrete and even materialist terms. (Hobbes is an unusual and unique figure as his account of freedom inspires members of both parties in this debate.)

08 December 2010

CFP: midsouth philosophy conference



and Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

The University of Memphis

March 4-5, 2011

07 December 2010

05 December 2010

bcc applied ethics conference

Third Annual Conference on Applied Ethics
                                 Broome Community College
                                            April 1-2, 2011
                                        Religion and Ethics:
                                 Conflict, Tolerance, and Promise
The Spring Conference on Applied Ethics 2011 invites papers, panels, and presentations on the topic of Religion and Ethics. 

30 November 2010

colloquium reminder

Lewis Trelawny-Cassity
"On the Interdependence of Legislation and Theology in Plato's Laws"
commentator: Carlos Cortissoz

Thursday, December 2nd
UUW 324

with year-ending wine and cheese reception to follow, 1:00-2:00

28 November 2010

nietzschean ressentiment


see hypothesis #5, pp. 24f

it looks like plain old envy/spite rather than ressentiment, but good enough for government work

pretty pretty

The Edinburgh Critical History of Philosophy: Nineteenth Century v. 5

just saw this online -- apparently it's not coming out till next June.

I hear the middle chapter is particularly good.

20 November 2010

18 November 2010

mitchem dissertation fellowship

Marquette University invites applications for the Arnold L. Mitchem Dissertation Fellowship Program. Mitchem Fellowships seek to help increase the presence of currently underrepresented racial and cultural groups in the U.S. professoriate by supporting advanced doctoral candidates during completion of the dissertation. The fellowships provide one year of support for doctoral candidates well into the writing stage of their dissertation work who are U.S. citizens currently enrolled in U.S. universities. 

job market

job wiki:


and the smoker:


Wretzel defense




“Speaking With the
Dead: The Philosophical
Implications of Brandom’s
Interpretive Oversights”

Friday, November 19th
12:00 noon

LT – 1210

All are welcome!

I don't think they understand

what 'thinning the herd' means:

In an effort to thin the herd at doctors' offices during cold and flu season, Blue Cross Blue Shield is launching an online service to pair doctors and patients through video chat.


16 November 2010

more on Albany




... probably a lot more recently, too.

no no no no


15 November 2010

i was wondering why there's no caviar in the faculty lounge

and why there's no faculty lounge.

and why my 5 year old state-issued computer resides permanently at the help desk


kind of interesting

use of clickers in the classroom:


way more interesting that those articles on insidehighered.com about naked library photo shoots.

13 November 2010

Colloquium reminder

this Thursday, back at the usual location (UUW-324):

Alice Crary
"Minding What Already Matters: A Critique of Moral Individualism"

get the paper off blackboard.  buy the books:


in case you were wondering


subsidized student loans

get rid of 'em!

and Pell grants, too.

(but cut the top marginal tax rate)

12 November 2010

empirical evidence

the fulsome kind: (NYT)

Well, not exactly. The Hartford Insurance Company has twice looked at entering the long-term care insurance market and was scared off. “The experience studies were just not long enough and fulsome enough for us to have credible pricing,” said Brian Murphy, executive vice president of life insurance at Hartford.



oh well, it doesn't mean anything anymore: (Slate)

the more fulsome defense of the common procreation argument 

oh god, this is awful


(h/t Leiter)

special bonus:


(CK's favorite boat ad)

11 November 2010

alain locke's department

see also http://www.coas.howard.edu/philosophy/
and http://savehowardphilosophy.wordpress.com/2010/10/06/welcome/
and http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/save-howard-universitys-philosophy-department/

From: The African Philosophy E-Mail List [AFRI-PHIL@LEHMAN.LISTSERV.CUNY.EDU] 
Sent: 11 November 2010 05:00
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 2010 10:30:45 -0500
From: Bruce Janz <janzb@MAIL.UCF.EDU>
Subject: FYI: Howard University Dept. of Philosophy

Howard University's upper administration is threatening to close the MA and BA progams in Philosophy. This is the program that Alain Locke was involved in founding. Brian Leiter has a note about this, here http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2010/10/howard-university-philosophy-department-under-attack.html 

This is an important program, with some very good people in it, and a history of producing strong thinkers. This would be a major loss to Africana philosophy, and to Howard University. The final decision gets made on Dec. 1, and the president, Dr. Sidney Ribeau, needs to understand how important this department is to Africana philosophy and to his own university. If you want to make your thoughts about this known, you can write the president, at Dr. Sidney Ribeau, President, Howard University, 2400 6th Street NW, Washington, DC 20059. Or, you can sign a petition, located here http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/save-howard-philosophy/sign.html

10 November 2010

imperative of integration

my copy came today.  how did tony read the whole thing already?

08 November 2010

cfp: syracuse grad student conference

2011 Syracuse Philosophy Graduate Student Conference
April 15 & 16
Keynote Speakers: Michael Forster (UChicago) & Robert Van Gulick
Paper submission deadline: Jan 15th, 2011
Send submissions to:  suphilgradconf@gmail.com

Papers should be suitable for a 25-30 minute presentation (no more
than 4000 words). SU philosophy graduate students will serve as
on papers presented at the conference.

Submissions must be prepared for blind review and sent as either a PDF
or Word file.

In the text of your email, please include your name, contact
information, and a short abstract (max 150 words).

We welcome submissions in all areas of philosophy.

Best regards,
Mike Campbell & Andy Specht

radical philosophy association

in case you're passing through Eugene this week:


06 November 2010


it just occurred to me that nowhere on this blog does the word "Binghamton" appear.

Binghamton Binghamton Binghamton Binghamton.

colloquium reminder

Colloquium this Thursday (11/11) is
Christopher Knapp, "Thoreau's Account of Prudential Value"

***new location, this week only: UU 252 ***

it looks like this:

05 November 2010

online education is exploding

all across the country:


that means there's a lot of it, or at least a lot of enrollment

(via Max)

new JFP out


might be a couple new listings there

p.s.: don't forget about the web updates

03 November 2010

higher education

from the Chronicle:

New York's attorney general, Andrew M. Cuomo, a Democrat, has also pledged to put higher education at the center of his plans to restore the state's economy, developing policies that would help universities commercialize research and encourage more businesses to offer internships by providing tax credits to companies that employ student interns. Mr. Cuomo defeated Carl P. Paladino, a real-estate developer from Buffalo who was backed by the Tea Party. As the state's attorney general, Mr. Cuomo, burnished a national reputation as a crusader for consumers' rights, primarily through investigations into the relationships between colleges and student-loan providers.

01 November 2010


GASLAND tonight at the Anderson Center.
with the filmmaker (guy w/ banjo)


pizza at 6, doors open at 6:30, movie at 7, fear by 7:10
sponsored by Lew

SPEL workshop on Thursday

this week it's Interviewing.

mandatory for all 2nd year Ph.D. students and anybody who might want to do a mock interview sometime soon.

29 October 2010

from the sports pages







reposted from the listserv:

FEMMSS 4: Call for Proposals

Paper proposals are invited for the fourth conference of the Association for Feminist Epistemologies, Methodologies, Metaphysics and Science Studies (FEMMSS) to be held at The Pennsylvania State University, May 10-12, 2012.  For more information about FEMMSS and our past conferences see femmss.org.  

We welcome new participants and perspectives from across the academy and outside it that provide feminist discussion on any topic in epistemologies, methodologies, metaphysics, or science studies. 

27 October 2010

CFP: philosophy and the arts // redemption

Call for Papers and Artwork
Fourth Annual Philosophy and the Arts Conference at Stony Brook Manhattan
April 1-2, 2011
Keynote Speaker – Kaja Silverman
The Masters program in Philosophy and the Arts at Stony Brook University in Manhattan centers on intersections of art and philosophy. In an effort to encourage dialogue across disciplines, we offer this conference as an interdisciplinary event and welcome participants working in a variety of fields and media to respond to this year’s topic:
Between the familiar extremes of redeeming oneself (as in the eyes of God, or a friend) and of redeeming a coupon, the term redemption shoulders a rich range of expressive possibilities. Each sense reveals an aspect of the event of exchange of one thing, condition, or meaning for another. “Redemption” may express conversion, salvage, ransom, reparation, purchase, or liberation, and these definitions all vary in their economic, ontological, and hermeneutical hefts.


Melissa's going to the ASA.  Everyone just got back from the SAGP.  Max is off somewhere.  what else is going on?

spring registration

early registration has opened.  (for returning grad students)

we have plenty of seats for spring, but you might as well check with your advisor and sign up for classes.

bonus announcement: flu shots this week on campus.  I'm going tomorrow morning in the colloquium room.

26 October 2010


simultaneous test: how to post pix on this blog and what exactly is in the folder labelled 'backup'

graduate school advice

so you want to get a Ph.D. in the humanities (posted by Lisa):


and don't forget the law school one:

and poli sci

I'd post the Derrida one, but this is a family blog.

25 October 2010

Wittgenstein on twitter


h/t Max

Preparing professors to teach?

someone should read this or something:



Call for Papers

Ninth International Conference of the International Development Ethics Association


Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania, U.S., June 9-11, 2011

Organized by
Centre on Values and Ethics (COVE) at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada and Center for International Studies (CIS) and Philosophy Department at Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, PA

Plenary speaker
Naila Kabeer, Professorial Fellow, Institute of Development Studies, Sussex and Senior Research Fellow, Department of International Development, UK

While submissions on any topic in development ethics are welcome, IDEA is particularly interested in submissions that fit the theme of exploring, understanding, and analyzing the role of gender justice in development theory and policy.

Scholars and activists in development are increasingly using the concept “gender justice” to replace the terms “gender equality” and “gender mainstreaming”. Many now hold that describing situations using the latter terms fails to address adequately the ongoing gender-based injustices from which women suffer. However, there is no single definition of gender justice and much disagreement among local, national, and international power-holders about what constitutes gender injustice and how to alleviate or eliminate it.

IDEA invites submissions that could include discussions of gender as it relates to any of the following list of topics.
Gender and
• concepts of equality, justice, rights, capabilities
• concepts of agency, empowerment, freedom, autonomy
• concepts of democracy, citizenship, constitutionalism
• concepts of the law, judicial reform, access to justice
• intersections of race, class, ethnicity, other factors of discrimination
• intersections of local/national and global
• economic globalization, global economy, markets, labor
• the family, community, nation, global
• reproductive health, health care, population
• education, religion, culture
• concepts of poverty, measuring inequalities
• the environment, climate change, public health
• feminisms, movements, activism
• post-colonialism, imperialism, transnationalism
• power, knowledge, institutional structures
• care ethics, values and ethics in general
• migration, global in the local
• violence, conflict, war, terrorism
• Human Development Reports, Millennium Development Goals, measurements, standards
• local, national, and global institutions and NGOs

Papers could examine these issues from diverse theoretical and conceptual perspectives including philosophical argument, empirical analysis, examinations of policy, and action strategies. Papers could consider how and to what degree the concrete experiences of women in specific contexts can and should inform theory, practice, and activism at local and global levels. The conference will engage scholars and practitioners from around the world and from a wide variety of disciplines and activities (including philosophy and other humanities, social sciences, policy studies, development, social work, NGOs, local and global agencies and organizations, government officials and policy makers). IDEA particularly welcomes submissions from scholars and practitioners in South countries.

Submission of Abstracts.
Proposals should be submitted by email to Christine Koggel at ckoggel@brynmawr.edu and should include:
1. An abstract of 500 words
2. Name, affiliation, and contact information on a separate page
3. A biography of under 100 words (for the conference program)

The conference will be conducted primarily in English. There may be some presentations in Spanish, depending on the availability of volunteers to give informal translations. Proposals for presentations in Spanish should be sent to Daniela Gallegos at danielagallegos@yahoo.com.

Important dates:
• December 17, 2010: deadline for proposals
• February 18, 2011: notification of acceptance
• May 1, 2011: deadline for submission of complete papers

Program Co-Chairs:
Jay Drydyk, President of IDEA and Director of COVE
Christine Koggel, Co-Director of CIS and Board Member of IDEA

22 October 2010

more from the mailbox ....

... a way for you to get your own philosophy spam, some of which is actually Useful and Important:

Dear DGS,
Would you please circulate this invitation to join Philosophy Updates to your graduate students?  PhilUpdates is a mailing list for jobs, conferences, calls for papers, and other action items, both worldwide and in North America; it currently has 4,000 members.  They can join by sending an email to wmuphilgrad@gmail.com or by going here:
Much thanks!

really, you should sign up for this -- and philosop and the Liverpool listserv and maybe FEAST-L and Journolist, too. it might make a big difference in your life, or just keep you up to date with what people you don't know are doing.


by the way, this is the completely unofficial blog by some guy named "bob" and only happens to mention things of possible relevance to the graduate program known as "SPEL", to which this blog has no official connection.

oh, and buy this book.  even though the price is not very compassionate.

Saba Fatima on video

from the e-mails--

Saba gives a talk at Ohio Wesleyan:

this is a test

... been wondering whether there's enough post-worthy stuff to sustain a blog.  probably not, but I have a cold and the Yankees are losing.