CFP: Naturalism: Challenges and New Perspectives

Submission deadline: October 1, 2021

Topic areas


Topoi - Special Issue on “Naturalism: Challenges and New Perspectives”

We are inviting proposals/abstracts for papers to be included in a special issue of Topoi on the topic of naturalism. Abstracts should be ~500 words and submitted [email protected] with a brief CV no later than October 1st, 2021. Selected abstracts will be invited to submit a full paper (~8,000 words), which will be included in the special issue (pending peer review). Further details concerning the special issue and submission process below.

Guest Editors:

Thomas Jussuf Spiegel, Simon Schüz, Dan Kaplan

Confirmed Contributors (alphabetical):

Mario De Caro (Roma Tre / Tufts)

Fional Ellis (Roehampton)

Shaun Gallagher (Memphis)

Daniel Hutto (Wollongon)

David Macarthur (Sydney)

Huw Price (Cambridge)

Joseph Rouse (Wesleyan)

Special Issue Description:

The paradigm of so-called scientific naturalism has received a growing amount of critical attention from within and outside of analytic philosophy in the last few decades. The main thrust of a host of these critiques is to “soften” the claim of scientific naturalism by rejecting its reductionist or even eliminativist implications. Within the analytic tradition, naturalism has been critiqued since the 1990s by thinkers like Hornsby, Strawson, Nagel, Stroud, Putnam, McDowell or more recently Lynne Rudder Baker, Mario De Caro, David Macarthur, Beale & Kidd, Cahill & Raleigh. Such critiques are commonly motivated by Neo-Aristotelian and/or Wittgensteinian intuitions. From outside the analytic tradition, phenomenologists in the Husserlian tradition as well as thinkers in the Idealist tradition have been steadfastly critical of naturalism as well, albeit for different reasons.

The purpose of this special issue of Topoi is to further advance the fruitful growing debate surrounding critical engagements with naturalism by inviting both historically informed as well as contemporary perspectives. We welcome both papers critical of naturalism and those in defence of different forms of naturalism from all areas of philosophy (analytic philosophy, phenomenology, pragmatism, idealism, transcendental philosophy, the history of philosophy etc.). Possible topics and questions include, but are not limited to:

– How ought naturalism to be phrased properly?

–  Do “alternative” forms of naturalism (e.g. Aristotelian naturalism, liberal naturalism, second nature naturalism, near-naturalism etc.) stand up to scrutiny? 

– What arguments and reasons against ontological or methodological naturalism are there? Specifically: Can methodological naturalism be vindicated against the coherence dilemma (Rea 2002)? Can ontological naturalism be defended against Hempel’s dilemma (Hempel 1969)?

– What different, perhaps yet unexplored versions of naturalism are available?

– Which are preferable conceptualizations of physicalism?

– How is the relationship between the scientific and manifest image to be conceived?

– What, if any, is the relation between naturalism and scientism?

– Is naturalism a thesis, a project, or a stance/attitude (cf. Ney 2008)?

– What role does naturalism play in both theoretical and practical philosophy?

– Are there wider social and political ramifications of naturalism? What is the status of naturalism in wider culture?

Submission of abstracts:

Abstracts should not exceed 500 words in addition to four to five keywords for indexing purposes. Submissions should be formatted as a pdf-file and be suitable for blind review. Please send your abstract along with a brief CV [email protected] The submission deadline for abstracts is October 1st 2021, notification of acceptance will be given by November 1st 2021.

Please submit abstracts [email protected]

Submission of full papers:

If an abstract is accepted, the deadline for the final paper is April 30th 2022. Submissions must be suitable for blind review. Each submission should also include a brief abstract of no more than 500 words and four to five keywords for indexing purposes. Publication is “online first” presumably the same year, print publication the following year. 

Please submit your full paper draft here (in case your abstract is accepted):

Please direct any questions and queries to:[email protected]

Supporting material

Add supporting material (slides, programs, etc.)