CFP: War and Self-Defence
By Helen Frowe

August 25th – 27th, 2010
University of Sheffield, UK

Keynote Speakers:

Frances Kamm (Harvard)
Jeff McMahan (Rutgers)
David Rodin (Oxford)


Saturday, 14th March 2009

Research Beehive 2.21
Old Library Building
Newcastle University

Philip Pettit is one of the most significant moral and political philosophers today. This conference will bring together new work on Pettit’s many philosophical contributions by three philosophers-Thom Brooks (Newcastle), Cecile Laborde (University College London), and Michael Ridge (Edinburgh)-with replies to each by Philip Pettit.


Registration (tea/coffee)

Speaker: Michael Ridge (Edinburgh), An Opportunity for Expressivists? Sincerity, Belief Expression and Ecumenical Expressivism
Respondent: Philip Pettit (Princeton)


Let us loosely define perfectionism as the view that well-being consists in the (enjoyable) exercise of the capacities that are distinctive of one’s biological species. A dog does well when it does the sort of things that exemplify dogness, and we people do best when we make use of our various human capacities – rational, emotional, social, physical, and so on. As Richard Kraut points out in his The Ethics of Well-Being, this need not involve any sort of dubious inference from ‘x is natural’ to ‘x is good’. Rather, perfectionism should be thought of as a theory that best unifies the phenomena we are trying to understand. We have a bunch of intuitions about cases, and perfectionism captures the ones that withstand scrutiny, the argument goes:

Epistemic ethics
By Nick Shackel

What is good and bad? What is virtue and vice? How should we live? These are the big questions of ethics. They are also deeply practical questions. The point is not simply to know the answers but to do what is right and to avoid what is wrong. Through action we pursue ends, manifest character and live life. Action is the nexus of ethical concern. Agents are the authors of action and are also the objects of ethical evaluation. The ethical standing of an agent bears a complex relation to their actions, to how they were sensitive to the ethically relevant facts in coming to their actions and to their general inclinations to act. But agency and action also require believers and belief. What is the ethical status of believers and belief, as such? And what relation do these evaluations surrounding action and belief have to one another?

This work is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0.