Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Jules Vuillemin and Skepticism

On December 6th, the workshop “Le scepticisme selon Jules Vuillemin” will take place at the Archives Henri-Poincaré, in Nancy. Here's the program:

10h30-10h45 : Welcome by Philippe Nabonnand (Directeur des Archives Poincaré).

10h45-12h00 : Lorenzo Corti: “Jules Vuillemin et la morale du scepticisme.”

12h00-13h15 : Joseph Vidal-Rosset: “Rawls, un 'sceptique amateur de tranquillité'? Réponse à Jules Vuillemin.”

13h15-14h30 : Lunch (buffet sur place).

14h30-16h00 : Carlos Lévy: “Jules Vuillemin, historien ou inventeur de la Nouvelle Académie?”.

All participants are invited to lunch. If you're planning to attend, please confirm your participation as soon as possible: write either to Lorenzo Corti (lorenzo.corti@univ-lorraine.fr) or to Joseph Vidal-Rosset (joseph.vidal.rosset@univ-lorraine.fr). For information about how to arrive at the Archives Poincaré, check this page: http://poincare.univ-lorraine.fr/fr/contact-et-acces.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Ancient Physics and Skepticism

The recently published collection, Space in Hellenistic Philosophy: Critical Studies in Ancient Physics (De Gruyter, 2014), edited by G. Ranocchia, C. Helmig, and C. Horn, includes the following two papers on Pyrrhonism:

Richard Bett, "Aenesidemus the Anti-Physicist."

Emidio Spinelli, "Φαινόμενα contra Νοούμενα: Sextus Empiricus, the Notion of Place and the Pyrrhonian Strategy at Work."

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Aporia in Ancient Philosophy

On November 28-30, 2014, the Plato Center at Trinity College Dublin will hold the conference "The Aporetic Tradition in Ancient Philosophy." There is no attendance fee. For information, contact George Karamanolis (george.karamanolis@univie.ac.at) or Vasilis Politis (vpolitis@tcd.ie). Here's the program:

Friday 28 November

10.30: Registration and Coffee 
10.50: Welcome

11.00-12.30: John Palmer: "Dilemmatic arguments: the origins of aporia-based method in the Eleatic and Sophistic traditions."

14.00-15.30: Jan Szaif: "Aporetic dialogue in Plato’s early works."

16.00-17.30: Vasilis Politis: "Aporia and scepticism in Plato’s early dialogues."

18.00-19.30: Lesley Brown: "Aporia in the Theaetetus and in the Sophist."

Saturday 29 November 

9.30-11.00: Verity Harte: "Aporia in the Parmenides."

11.30-13.00: Friedemann Bubbensiek: "Aporia in Metaphysics Beta."

14.00-15.30: Jessica Gelber: "A case study of Aristotle’s use of aporiai in natural science: Generation of Animals."

16.00-17.30: Christof Rapp: "Aporia and dialectical method in Aristotle."

18.00-19.30: Jan Opsomer: "The aporetic mode in Plato's school, from the Early to the Hellenistic Academy."

Sunday 30 November 

9.30-11.00: John Dillon: "Aporia in Plutarch."

11.30-13.00: Luca Castagnoli: "Aporia and inquiry in ancient Pyrrhonism."

14.00-15.30: Inna Kupreeva: "Alexander of Aphrodisias: aporia and exegesis."

16.00-17.30 George Karamanolis: "The role of aporia in Plotinus."

18.00-19.30: Damian Caluori: "Aporia and the limits of reason in Damascius."

Monday, November 3, 2014

Montaigne and Skepticism

On November 13-14, the Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3 will host the symposium "Montaigne et le scepticisme: nouvelles perspectives." For complete information, right click on the image below and open it in a new tab.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Stoics on Apprehension

The following paper might be of interest to those working on ancient Academic skepticism: Tamer Nawar, "The Stoic Account of Apprehension," Philosophers' Imprint vol. 14, no. 29. You can access it here.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

New Research Center

You might be interested in the transdisciplinary research center Forms of Knowledge in the Ancient World, which was founded in 2013 at the University of Rome Tor Vergata”. For information about the center, including its many lectures and conferences, click here.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Meeting on Skepticism in Bahia

The IV International Meeting on Skepticism & XV Colóquio Nacional Sobre Ceticismo (The Value of Understanding) will take place in Bahia (Brazil) on November 17-19. For more information, go here.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Skepticism and Realism: Hume and Reid

themed collection of four papers dealing with skepticism and realism that were published in the Journal of Scottish Philosophy is available for free here.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Issue 4/3-4 of IJSS

Volume 4, Issue 3-4 of the International Journal for the Study of Skepticism is now out. It is a special issue devoted to Thompson Clarke and edited by Jean-Philippe Narboux. Check it out here.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Evolutionary Debunking of Morality

On November 28th, 2014, Utrecht University will host the symposium, "Evolutionary Debunking Arguments in Ethics: Normative, Metaethical, and Empirical Aspects." There will be four talks:

Peter Königs: "From Moral Error Theory to Practical Error Theory."

Hanno Sauer: "The Weakest Link: Can Metaethics Protect Our Moral Beliefs from Debunking?"

Jason Clark: "Putting emotions and cognition on a par in evolutionary debunking arguments."

Joshua Tybur: "Fitting Morality Within the Evolved Function and Structure of Disgust."

More information can be found here.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Sextus's Attack on Rhetoric

A new paper by Emidio Spinelli (Rome) has just been published: "Contre la rhétorique: langage pyrrhonien et « usage commun de la vie » selon Sextus Empiricus", in Jean-Michel Counet (ed.), Philosophie et langage ordinaire de l'Antiquité à la Renaissance (Louvain: Peeters, 2014).

Monday, September 22, 2014

Conference on Skepticism in Bonn

On November 26-28, the University of Bonn will host the conference, "Skeptical Solutions: Provocations of Philosophy." Complete information can be found here.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

New Issue of Sképsis

The latest issue of the Brazilian journal Sképsis is now out. You can check it out here.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Inferior Scholarship & Intellectual Honesty

I just read Harold Tarrant's review of Charles Brittain's Philo of Larissa: The Last of the Academic Sceptics (OUP, 2001), published in Ancient Philosophy 22 (2002): 485-492. In fact, I had already read it back in 2003. But I had forgotten that, at the end of the review, Tarrant says the following:

"Since it derives from an Oxford DPhil. thesis I choose not to blame Brittain for the inaccurate representation of my own work about which I have protested. Another book stemming from a 1996 DPhil. thesis is G. Bechtle, The Anonymous Commentary on Plato's "Parmenides" (Bern 1999). Since his unpopular views on the extent of metaphysical interpretation of the Parmenides in Neopythagorean times have their clearest modern antecedent in my own Thrasyllan Platonism (Ithaca 1993), 148-177, of which he makes no mention, I assume the problem lies in Oxford: where the inferior scholarship and preposterous theses of lesser parts of the world are treated with the contempt that they so richly deserve--as Anytus treated the sophists (Meno 92b)."

This reminded me of a related complaint repeatedly made by an Italian colleague who criticizes Anglophone scholars working on skepticism for not citing works in other languages. One reason for this is no doubt the one referred to by Tarrant. Another reason is that Anglophone scholars don't usually read (and much less speak) other languages. In fact, the latter reason may be a consequence of the former, since it's not that they don't need to learn other languages (e.g., for practical purposes, in many parts of the US they should at least try to learn Spanish), but that they just don't care. Now, in relation to Tarrant's complaint, I recently noticed that junior scholars from the US and the UK who have just started working on skepticism usually cite those authors from "lesser parts of the world" who have been working in this area for the past eight to ten years, whereas senior scholars tend to ignore the works of the latter even though they defend, sometimes using strikingly similar terms, ideas or interpretations first defended or fully developed in some of those works. I have nothing against someone who, for whatever reasons, decides not to read the work of certain people, but if he/she does read it and thinks that their work is not good enough and hence not worth citing, maybe he/she should refrain from making use of their ideas.