Other Minds, Other Wills

June 2, 2017 - June 3, 2017
Department of Philosophy, University of Chicago

Rosenwald 405
1101-11 E 58th St
Chicago 60637
United States


  • The Mind and Action Workshop

All speakers:

Kyla Ebels Duggan
Northwestern University
Naomi Eilan
University of Warwick
Anton Ford
A. j. Julius
University of California, Los Angeles
Douglas Lavin
University College London
Henrike Moll
University of Southern California
Richard Moran
Harvard University
Kieran Setiya
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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This conference was inspired by the sense that there are interesting connections to be drawn between debates in the philosophy of mind about how we understand the minds of other persons and debates in moral philosophy about the special normative significance of our relations to other persons. Our aim is bring together philosophers and other researchers who have approached these topics from interesting angles, and to invite them to reflect on how their projects might engage with one another. Participants will address questions such as the following:

• How is our capacity to understand other subjects related to our capacity to stand in relations of “mutual recognition” with other subjects? Is the idea of another mind fundamentally the idea of a “second person”, a “you” to my “I”?

• What role does perception of bodies play in our awareness of other minds? Can we perceive the mental states of another person, or must we always make an inference from something exterior and visible to something interior and invisible?

• Does understanding other minds require possession of a “theory of mind”? To what extent is our understanding of other minds appropriately conceived as a kind of theoretical understanding? What role, if any, does our understanding of our own minds plays in grounding our understanding of other minds?

• What is the relation between understanding other minds and feeling concern for other persons? Is our capacity for shame, empathy, a sense of justice, etc. grounded on our understanding of other minds, or do such forms of concern for others themselves ground our understanding of what another mind could be?

• How is the relation between two subjects of action different from the relation to between two subjects of belief? In particular, how is giving you my reason for doing something different from giving you my reason for believing something, and what, if anything, does this reveal about the difference between reasons for action and reasons for belief?

• How must two agents be related to another other in order for them to be capable of wronging one another?

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June 1, 2017, 5:00am CST

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