Digest Week 5 Michaelmas Term 2022

MT22, Week 5 (6th-12th November)

If you have entries for the weekly Digest, please send information to admin@philosophy.ox.ac.uk by midday, Wednesday the week before the event. 

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

The Oxford Pastorate, Reading Group - Iris Murdoch’s The Sovereignty of Good

Monday 24th October, 7th November & 21st November – 8pm, on Zoom.

A reading group for postgrads and ECRs to explore this text and it’s themes of attention, beauty, imagination, humility, perfection and the good.

This forms part of the Stella Aldwinckle Series - lectures, seminars and reading groups which focus on exploring philosophies of life in an interdisciplinary context.

Sign up is available here. Email bethan.willis@oxfordpastorate.org for more details.


Hegel Reading Group

The Hegel Reading Group meets in term weekly on Tuesdays 6-7.30 pm by Skype. We continue with Hegel's 'Phenomenology of Spirit'; we are now at 'Spirit that is certain of itself. Morality', starting from paragraph 596 of the Miller translation (OUP 1977) although any translation may be used. Each week's reading is posted on hegelinoxford.wordpress.com

To join the Skype group or for enquiries contact susanne.herrmann-sinai@ philosophy.ox.ac.uk or louise.braddock@philosophy.ox.ac.uk


How History and Philosophy of Science Can Help Accelerate Alignment Progress | 6 - 7 pm | Dept of Statistics (Large Lecture Room)

Adam Shimi is a research scientist and epistemologist at Conjecture. He'll be discussing the work done by his team, which is focused on understanding why AI alignment – that is, ensuring future AI systems are interpretable, controllable, and produce good outcomes - is so difficult and how knowledge is actually produced.

Conjecture are an alignment startup dedicated to applied, scalable AI alignment research. Their R&D aims at gaining a better understanding of, and ability to control, current AI models, via both conceptual and applied alignment research.

Adam’s talk will be followed by a Q&A and social, with food and drinks provided.

Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/441230054794924

Pillow Talk: Artists Who Love Philosophy, Philosophers Who Love Art | A lecture by Michael Corris (Professor Emeritus, Southern Methodist University, Dallas)

5.30pm, Modern Art Oxford

The traffic between philosophy and art has been a two-way street for some time. This lecture will focus on selected artists and philosophers whose work exemplifies the engagement of art and philosophy, particularly interaction
that have shaped the philosophy of art and inspired new practices in contemporary art. The final section of the talk will revisit the contentious issue of art's ability to ‘do the work’ of philosophy and will offer some suggestions regarding the prospects for collaboration between art and philosophy.

Please email dobrien@brookes.ac.uk to register.


Metaphysics and Language Reading Group | 4:15-5:45pm | New College (Spooner Room 1)

A weekly pre-read reading group on topics in metaphysics and philosophy of language, focusing this term on predicate reference and properties. The reading for week 5 is David Wiggins (1984) - 'The sense and reference of predicates: A running repair to Frege's doctrine and a plea for the copula'.

Please contact katherine.hong@philosophy.ox.ac.uk to be added to the mailing list for future readings. 


Sowerby Philosophy & Medicine Project | 5.00pm | King's College London 

Emeritus Professor Christopher Boorse: 'New Replies to Critics'

"I shall reply to various critics -- most writing since my “Second rebuttal on health” (2014) -- of my goal-contribution account of function (1976, 2002) and of my analysis of health in scientific medicine, the “biostatistical theory” (BST) (1977, 1987, 1997, 2014), that is based upon it. Issues at stake include whether there is such a thing as normal biological function (Amundson); whether normal function is, or ought to be, the basis of theoretical or practical health in medicine; whether selected-effect (SE) analyses of function are superior to goal-contribution ones in this regard, or otherwise (Garson, Neander, Wakefield, Casini, Griffiths and Matthewson); and whether the reference class for medical normality is an objective scientific fact or the result of evaluative choice (Kingma, Binney). Two important special cases of the reference-class problem are osteoporosis (Binney) and aging (Rogers and Walker)."

The colloquium is a part of the Sowerby Philosophy & Medicine project series 'New Work on the Concepts of Health and Disease'.  

Find out more and register here.