Department of Philosophy
Research seminar

Graduate Research Seminar II

We would like to kindly invite you to participate of the second Graduate Research Seminar (GRS) of the Autumn Semester 2019.

Teksten Graduate Research Seminar II mot en bakgrunn av grå spørsmålstegn og et markert rødt spøsrmålstegn

The GRS is primarily a space for Master Students of Philosophy to network and to share their research. But anyone interested in Philosophy is also very welcome to attend. 

-16.00-16.15 Snacks and Drinks

-16.15- 17.00 “Political Philosophy on The Problem of Especially Vulnerable Migrants” by Caroline Stampone (Master student at UIB)

Is political philosophy on the problem of especially vulnerable migrants (EVM hereafter) supposed to be action guiding? I would argue that this is not necessarily the case. In my view, the main role of political philosophers consists in understanding political problems. It is a secondary task to prescribe how capable states should remedy them, which needs to be addressed with care in order to not prioritize what seems to be feasible over what is morally acceptable. I discuss Hannah Arendt and David Miller’s approach to the problem of EVM  in order to argue first that this political issue is a matter of making human beings as human beings superfluous; and second, that any prescriptions that reflects the logic of superfluity embedded in this issue are not morally acceptable.

-17.00-17.15 Break

-17.15-18.00 “Philosophical progress: should we be optimists or pessimists?” by Tina Firing (Master student at UIO)

In the essay “Why Isn’t There More Progress in Philosophy”, David Chalmers seeks to make an empirical case for the view that there is little progress in philosophy. Chalmers then goes on to answer his titling question by pointing to seven possible explanations. In my presentation I do three things: First, I raise some objections to Chalmers’ characterization of philosophy as plagued with persistent disagreement. Second, I make the somewhat bold claim that none of Chalmers’ proposed explanations actually explain the alleged pervasive disagreement in philosophy. Finally, I briefly sketch a more optimistic perspective on philosophical progress.