Mary Midgley's Moral Philosophy

July 16, 2024 - July 17, 2024
Department of Philosophy, Nottingham University

Humanities Building
United Kingdom

This will be an accessible event, including organized related activities

This event is available both online and in-person


  • BSHP
  • Analysis Association
  • Nottingham University


Nottingham University
Durham University
The College Of Idaho
Nottingham University


Nottingham University
Nottingham University

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This conference will be the first dedicated to exploring Mary Midgley’s (1919-2018) moral philosophy. Midgley was a distinguished British philosopher and an authority on animal and environmental ethics (among other things).  A recent renewal of historical interest in her work has come from her association with a group of 20th century women philosophers known as the ‘Wartime Quartet’ (Iris Murdoch, Philippa Foot, Elisabeth Anscombe and Midgley). 

Across the seventy years and over two hundred publications of her career, Midgley developed a rich moral vision that encompassed our relations to one another, non-human animals, and the natural world. This vision is informed by the history of Western moral and political philosophy, ethology and other sciences, and a wider range of influences, from Gaia theory to Buddhism.

Call for papers

We welcome contributed papers. Speakers will have one hour, with at least 20 mins for discussion.

Applications are made by submitting a short (250 word) abstract. The deadline is midnight on Sunday 2 June 2024. Abstracts should be anonymised and will be blind refereed by the conference organisers. Please email one of the conference organisers: [email protected] or [email protected].

Conference themes will include:

·       Midgley’s contributions to applied ethical topics including animal ethics and environmental philosophy.

·       Midgley’s own moral views and the relevant topics and themes.

·       Midgley’s influence on moral philosophy and meta-philosophy.

·       Midgley’s criticisms of mainstream approaches in philosophical ethics.

·       Midgley’s place in the history of philosophy as a member of the Wartime Quartet, as a woman philosopher, and as a major figure in the history of British public philosophy.

Keynote speakers:

·       Dr Clare MacCumhaill (University of Durham)

·       Professor Gregory McElwain (College of Idaho)

·       Professor Benjamin Lipscomb (Houghton University)

Supporting material

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June 1, 2024, 9:00am BST

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2 people are attending:

The College Of Idaho
Nottingham University

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Florida State University
Boston University

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