Digest Week 1 Hilary Term 2020

HT20, Week 1 (19th - 25th January)

If you have entries for the weekly Digest, they must be received by Wednesday, midday of the week before the event. Please send information to admin@philosophy.ox.ac.uk

Unless otherwise stated, all events will take place in the Radcliffe Humanities Building on Woodstock Road, OX2 6GG.

Notices - other Philosophy events, including those taking place elsewhere in the university and beyond

Philosophy of Probability Reading Group | 14.00 - 16.00 | Brasenose College

Organisers: Kevin Dorst, Silvia Milano and Al Wilson

The reading group will be pre-read - here is a list of possible readings.

If you'd like to attend, please fill out this form.

If you're interested in leading the discussion on some days (on a paper of your choice), state this on the form. Please also email kevindorst@pitt.edu when you sign up.


Global Priorities Research Reading Group | 18.30 - 20.00 | Nuffield Room 2, Worcester College

The reading group meets weekly to discuss Global Priorities Research, and most papers we’ll read are from the Global Priorities Institute. To be added to the mailing list, please email: petra.kosonen@worc.ox.ac.uk. This event is organized by Effective Altruism Oxford.

We'll start by reading The Case for Strong Longtermism by Hilary Greaves and William MacAskill: https://globalprioritiesinstitute.org/hilary-greaves-william-macaskill-t...

Mereology of Potentiality: Talk by Prof. Hasok Chang | 14.00 - 15.30 | Refugee Scholars Room, Corpus Christi College

22nd January: Prof. Hasok Chang - Physical Constitution vs. Mereology

Abstract: I propose a practice-based perspective on physical ontology, with particular attention to what happens in the actual practices of synthesis and disassembly in chemistry and physics. Such a focus exposes significant difficulties with the common mereological framework, which presumes the existence of units combining with each other without suffering any alterations in the process. In the experimental physical sciences, ranging from early modern chemical analysis to contemporary elementary particle physics, atomistic assumptions have co-existed with worries about fundamental units being changeable. Phenomena such as nuclear reactions, proton–proton collisions and the pair-creation and pair-annihilation of matter and anti-matter have given ample demonstrations that physical composition does not fit the standard part–whole relations in mereology. ‘Compositionism’ in chemistry and physics, founded on the notion that things are made up of immutable units simply getting rearranged through reactions, is a habit of our thinking, not a dictate of nature. We do apply compositionist thinking successfully in many areas of mathematics and some areas of science and everyday life, but not in the most fundamental parts of physical science. It would be a mistake to base our metaphysics on compositionism uncritically.

For more information, visit https://www.power-parts.website/weekly-seminars

Epistemology Group | 14.00 - 16.00 | Lecture Room 4, New College

A pre-read weekly reading and discussion group on recent work in epistemology, for graduate students and faculty, sometimes with work-in-progress talks. Contact Nick Hughes (nick.hughes@philosophy.ox.ac.uk) or Bernhard Salow (bernhard.salow@magd.ox.ac.uk) to be added to the mailing list.


Hegel Reading Group | 18.30 | Ryle Room, Radcliffe Humanities

We shall continue reading the Phenomenology of Spirit.

Week 1 - 23 January – Virtue and the course of the world §§ 381–393

Please contact susanne.herrmann-sinai@philosophy.ox.ac.uk for information. See the website with general information www.hegel.moonfruit.com.

Mereology of Potentiality Work-in-Progress Seminar | 14.00 - 15.30 | Refugee Scholars Room, Corpus Christi College

24th January: Matteo Grasso - How many things in Heaven and Earth? A principled account of special composition

For more information, visit https://www.power-parts.website/weekly-seminars