CFP: Pluralism, Relativism and Skepticism: The First Annual Conference of The Middle East Society for Analytic Philosophy

Submission deadline: November 15, 2018

Conference date(s):
March 19, 2019 - March 21, 2019

Go to the conference's page

Conference Venue:

Department of Philosophy, The American University in Cairo
Cairo, Egypt

Topic areas



20th-century philosophy witnessed the development of views sympathetic to relativism and pluralism in various branches of philosophy.  Goodman’s ‘world-making', Quine’s ontological relativity, Putnam’s conceptual relativism and logical pluralism, Rorty’s ‘anti-representationalism,’ and Kuhn’s conception of scientific progress, exemplify this sympathy in epistemology, metaphysics, the philosophy of logic and the philosophy of science.  Although championed by leading figures in analytic philosophy, such relativistic and pluralist views remain highly controversial. According to some they are incoherent; according to others they lead inevitably to skepticism.  

At the first conference of the Middle East Society for Analytic Philosophy (MESAP), we shall discuss the interplay between relativism, pluralism, and skepticism. We seek contributions that explore these connections from a variety of perspectives: philosophy of science, philosophy of language, moral philosophy, political philosophy, history of philosophy, metaphysics, metaphilosophy, social epistemology,  etc.

The conference will be held at the American University in Cairo from Tuesday 19th to Thursday 21st March 2019. Abstracts of around 300 words should be prepared for blind review and e-mailed, in a Word file, [email protected] November 15, 2018. Accepted authors will be notified by December 7, 2018. Full drafts (6000-9000 words) must be submitted by January 15, 2019. In addition, some selected presenters will also be invited to contribute to an edited volume arising from the conference.

The conference registration fee is $50 (covering attendance, lunch meals, and coffee breaks), and is free for students.

For further inquiry, please contact:[email protected] 

Keynote Speaker: Paul Boghossian, New York University

Possible Topics

The richness and diversity of the conference theme suggest many intriguing issues such as, but not limited to, the following:

  • The coherence of pluralism/relativism about scientific truth.

  • The role of convention in social epistemology as a rebuttal of skepticism.

  • Translation of “scientific terms” and the problem of incommensurability.

  • The unity of science and the question of “anti-realism”.

  • The connection between the notion of “rationality” and “logic” in the non-western philosophical traditions.

  • The limitations of the analytic methodological approaches in settling the questions of pluralism, relativism, and skepticism.

Venue: The historic AUC Tahrir Square Campus in downtown Cairo

About MESAP: The Middle East Society for Analytic Philosophy (MESAP) aims to be a philosophical hub, promoting the analytic tradition in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region. MESAP has many aspirational projects. These include: (a) publishing a biannual refereed journal in the analytic tradition in both English and Arabic; (b) organizing an annual conference in a different city in the MENA region on a revolving basis; (c) conducting workshops, talks, online platform discussions, reading groups for academics and the public; (d) translating canonical texts in analytic philosophy into Arabic, Turkish, and other MENA languages. Furthermore, we intend to sponsor academic exchanges between MENA universities and international institutions.

About AUC: Founded in 1919, AUC is a leading English-language, American-accredited institution of higher education and a center of intellectual, social and cultural life in the Arab world. Its community represents more than 60 countries. AUC stands as a crossroads for the world’s cultures and is a vibrant forum for reasoned argument, spirited debate, and understanding across the diversity of languages, facilities, and human experiences.

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