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Department of Philosophy

Forthcoming Research Seminars and Lectures

(For past seminars and lectures see here)

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05th to 06th June 2017: SPIN EVENT: The Philosophical Significance of Molyneux's Question, York (UK)

(17 May 2017)

June 5th-6th 2017

The question that now bears his name was posed by the Irish philosopher William Molyneux, and discussed by John Locke in his Essay Concerning Human Understanding: 

'Suppose a man born blind, and now adult, and taught by his touch to distinguish between a Cube, and a Sphere …, so as to tell, when he felt one and t’other, which is the Cube, which the Sphere. Suppose then the Cube and Sphere placed on a Table, and the Blind Man to be made to see. Quaere, whether by his sight, before he touched them, he could now distinguish, and tell, which is the Globe, which the Cube'. (Locke 1694: II, ix, 8)

During this two day, international conference, we will consider the question's enduring appeal, philosophical significance, and the respective role of philosophers and scientists in answering it.

Speakers: Becko Copenhaver, James Franklin, Alisa Mandrigin, Mike Martin, Mohan Matthen and L. A. Paul.

Respondents: Keith Allen, Alex Kerr, Heather Logue, Clare Mac Cumhaill, Louise Moody and Paul Noordhof.

All are very welcome. Full details, including how to register, here:

Funded by the Templeton-sponsored project, New Directions in the Study of the Mind (Cambridge).


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