CFP: Ordinary Language Philosophy

Submission deadline: September 30, 2018

Conference date(s):
December 10, 2018

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Conference Venue:

Institute of Philosophy, University of Zürich
Zürich, Switzerland


For this one-day workshop we will be joined by Avner Baz, one of OLP’s contemporary advocates. Avner Baz is Professor of Philosophy at Tufts University and author of two seminal books about OLP and methodology in analytic philosophy in general (When Words Are Called For, 2012; The Crisis of Method in Contemporary Analytic Philosophy, 2017). In these works, he argues against the viability of the so-called ‘method of cases’ for the analysis of concepts like knowledge, truth or causality, and he diagnoses a misconceived picture of language that he claims underlies standard philosophical practice today.

Submissions may, but need not, deal directly with theses and problems from Baz’s publications on the topic. Also welcome are submissions that discuss questions of a broader kind, such as the following:

  • Are the proponents of OLP committed to the view that all philosophical questions are linguistic questions? And would such a view be problematic?
  • Does OLP amount to a trivialisation of philosophy?
  • What role do, or should, linguistic rules, intuitions, and thought experiments play in OLP?
  • What should we, according to OLP, be concerned with: the way speakers actually use words? Or the correct way of using words? And what consequences does this have for the methodology of OLP? Can we investigate the ordinary use of words from the armchair or do we need to draw on empirical/experimental methods?
  • Are there philosophical questions that lie beyond the purview of OLP?

Please send your abstract (maximum length 500 words) to by September 30th 2018, mentioning ‘ZDW Avner Baz’ in the subject line. Abstracts should be formatted for blind review and free of personal and institutional information. We shall inform authors of our decision in early October and successful authors must submit their papers (maximum length 8.000 words) by November 30th 2018. The papers will then be circulated and we expect all participants to have read them before the workshop. Please note that travel costs and other expenses cannot be reimbursed, but lunch and dinner are provided for the speakers on the day of the workshop.

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