CFP: Exploring Expressivism in Ethics, Language, and Metaphysics

Submission deadline: February 15, 2023

Conference date(s):
April 28, 2023 - April 29, 2023

Go to the conference's page

Conference Venue:

Department of Philosophy, York University
Toronto, Canada

Topic areas


This conference aims to explore, evaluate, and extend the cluster of philosophical positions called ‘expressivism’. Expressivism, broadly put, holds that some set of concepts should be explained not by what they represent in the world, but by what states or attitudes of the speaker they express. One strength of expressivism is that it can be applied to any particular vocabulary or set of concepts; one could be an expressivist about ethical terms, or semantic terms, or legal terms, or even all terms. At this conference we want to explore these and related conversations. Is expressivism a cogent view? Should we be global expressivists or local expressivists? If local, then which domains are best understood with an expressivist analysis? Can expressivism be wedded to a more orthodox, representational, understanding of content? How can expressivism explain objectivity, truth, or some other such concept? How might an expressivist analysis look in some new application? We welcome submissions that address the very idea of expressivism as well as those that seek to apply expressivist analyses to some domain in new ways. We are also happy to accept submissions that wrestle with expressivism- adjacent topics, such as inferentialism, pragmatism, and anti-realism.

Submissions from all areas and traditions of philosophy that are related to this theme are welcomed. We especially welcome submissions from underrepresented groups and areas. Possible topics include (but are not limited to):

  • The prospects of global expressivism

  • The history of expressivism

  • The logic of expressivism

  • Applications of expressivism to new domains

  • Expressivism and metaethics

  • Non-cognitivism

  • How expressivism or anti-representationalism fits into a larger understanding of the mind and mental content

  • How expressivism fits with empirical data about rational agents and/or mental content

  • The relation between Expressivism and Naturalism

  • Critiques of Expressivism

  • Realism and Antirealism

Deadline to Submit Abstracts: February 15th, 2023 to [email protected]

Please submit your abstract (about 750 words) or completed paper (about 3000 words) by February 15, 2023. Presentations should be 20-25 minutes long and will be accompanied by a 10 minute commentary delivered by a graduate student from York University. Submissions should be prepared for blind review (no name or personal information within the document you are submitting). Please include your name, your affiliation, and the title of your paper in the body of your email.

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