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Highlights From Past Events and News


Charles R. Lamb Design Sketch for Mosaic in Sage Chapel Honoring Arts and Sciences, 1900

Southeast Corner of Goldwin Smith Hall in Springtime

South Facade of Goldwin Smith Hall in Autumn


Goldwin Smith Hall on the Arts Quad, looking southeast, silver gelatin print circa 1909

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Highlights From Past Events and News

The Sage School of Philosophy has organized numerous events, hosted many visiting speakers, engaged in countless lively discussions, and ushered graduates into successful careers. Here are a few highlights from recent years.

To see a full list of previous visiting speakers, click here.

Recent Events:

September 14, 2015:  One Day Workshop on Philosophy of Private Law, Faculty Lounge, Myron Taylor Hall (Law School).
10:00 am: John Gardner (Oxford University), "That's the Story of My Life".  Commentator:  Aditi Bagchi (Fordham University)
1:45 pm:  Erik Encarnacion (University of Southern California), "Contracts and the Practice Theory of Promising".  Commentator:  Fred Wilmot-Smith (Oxford University).
4:00 pm:  Emily Sherwin (Cornell University), "Formal Elements of Contracts and Fiduciary Law".  Commentator:  Andrei Marmor (Cornell University).
Papers will not be presented; sessions will begin with the comments.  For copies of the papers, contact Megan Fitzpatrick at


German Philosophy and the Ethics of Belief: A Conference in Honor of Allen W. Wood

October 31 - November 2, 2014

In tribute to Professor Wood and his 28 years of teaching at Cornell.

Workshop on the Ethics of Belief

November 15 - 16, 2014

Agenda and speakers


Norman Kretzmann Undergraduate Philosophy Lecture:

April 25, 2014:  Shelly Kagan, Yale University

"What is Ill-Being When Well-Being is Enjoying the Good?"


3rd Annual Workshop in Linguistics and Philosophy

November 9-10, 2013.  Held at the Physical Sciences Building, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

Ethics & Epistemology in the History of Philosophy:  A Conference in Honor of Gail Fine & Terence Irwin

September 20-21, 2013.  Held at the Nevin Center, Cornell Plantations, Ithaca, NY.Cornell Chronicle article:  "Conference Celebrates Ancient Philosophy, Fine and Irwin"

Recent Speakers:

  • Nicole Hassoun (Binghamton University)  Morally Permissible Moral Mistakes
  • Shamik Dasgupta (Princeton University)  Essentialism and the Nonidentity Problem
  • Jennifer Nagel (University of Toronto)

  • Janice Dowell (Syracuse University)Millikan, Metasemantics, and Moral Twin Earth
  • Stephen Menn (McGill University and Humboldt University of Berlin)Wisdom as the Science of the Four Causes?
  • Cian Dorr (New York University)Against Counterfactual Miracles
  • James Pryor (New York University)The Merits of Incoherence
  • Jessica Moss (New York University)Logos and Reason in Aristotle
  • Hille Paakkunainen (Syracuse University)What is Normative Authority?

  • Gunnar Björnsson (University of Gothenburg)Manipulated by Manipulation Arguments?

  • John Hawthorne (Magdalen College)The Epistemology of Disagreement

  • Julia Markovits (MIT)Humanity as an End in Itself

  • Hugh Benson (University of Oklahoma)Ancient Philosophy Speaker

    Alan Hajek (Australian National University)Staying Regular

    John Hawthorne (Magdalen College)The Epistemology of Coin FlippingKnowledge, Stakes, and Practical Adequacy  2/8/13

  • Laurent Cesalli (Cornell University)Intentionality as similitude. The case of Anton Marty (and some medievals)

    Hugh Benson (University of Oklahoma)Ancient Philosophy Speaker

  • Deborah Black, Philosophy and Centre for Medieval Studies, University of TorontoVarieties of Consciousness in Classical Arabic Philosophy

  • Robert Wisnovsky, Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University

  • UNYWEMP12/6 - 12/7/12Details

  • CU Workshop in LinguisticsDetails

  • Frank Griffel, Islamic Studies and International and Area Studies, Department of Religious Studies,Yale University "...and the killing of someone who upholds these convictions is obligatory!" Religious Law and the Assumed Disappearance of Philosophy in IslamPDF

  • David Charles, Oxford University"Aristotle: Practical Knowledge and Practical Truth"Ancient Philosophy Speaker: 10/12/12

  • Garth Fowden, Institute of Historical Research, National Hellenic Research Foundation, Athens "A Greek sheikh in Paris and Qom: Reflections on philosophical Islam"Visiting Speaker: 10/1/12  and"The Parthenon in a Qur'anic Landscape"Visiting Speaker: 10/2/12
  • A Conference Honoring Richard Boyd & Nicholas SturgeonConference AnnouncementConference Schedule 9/14 - 9/16/2012

  • Jessica Wilson, The University of Toronto"No Work for a Theory of Grounding"Sponsored by the Becker Fund: Graduate Student Visiting Philosopher Series: 5/11/12

  • Wang Jisi, Peking University:"On The Long Term Prospects of the China-U.S. Relationship in Light of China's Rise"The Politics and Ethics of the Rise of China: 4/30/12

  • John Hawthorne, Oxford University"Embedding Epistemic Modals"Visiting Scholar Lecture: 4/26/12

  • Wang Shaoguang, Chinese University of Hong Kong:"On Inequality and Governance in China"The Politics and Ethics of the Rise of China: 4/16/12

  • William Fitzpatrick, The University of Rochester"Debunking Evolutionary Debunking of Ethical Realism"Discussion Club:4/13/12

  • Robert Pasnau, University of Colorado"Knowledge over Time"Visiting Philosopher: 4/9/12

  • Michael Gill, University of Arizona"Non-consequentialist Thinking and Humean Sentimentalism"Graduate Student Visiting Philosopher Series: 4/6/12

  • Paul Guyer, University of Pennsylvania"Kant, Autonomy, and Modernity"Kretzmann Undergraduate Visiting Philosopher: 3/30/12

  • Rosemary Foot, Oxford University:"On China's Role in the International Human Right Regime"The Politics and Ethics of the Rise of China: 3/26/12

  • Lisa Shapiro, Simon Fraser University:Graduate Student Visiting Philosopher Series: 3/16/12

  • Selim Berker, Harvard University"Epistemic Teleology and the Separateness of Propositions"Discussion Club: 3/9/12

  • Iakovos Vasiliou, The Graduate Center, CUNY:Ancient Philosophy Speaker: 3/2/12

  • Joseph Chan, University of Hong Kong:"On Human Rights and Democracy from a Neo-Confucian Perspective"The Politics and Ethics of the Rise of China: 3/5/12

  • Justin Lin, Chief Economist, World Bank:"On China's Economic Ascent and its Global Consequences"The Politics and Ethics of the Rise of China: 2/20/12

  • Rusty Jones, Harvard University "Wisdom and Happiness in the Euthydemus"Ancient Philosophy Speaker: 2/10/12

  • Paul Boghossian, New York University:"Relavitism About the Normative"Kretzmann Undergraduate Visiting Philosopher: 2/3/12

  • Zoltan Szabo, Yale University:Impure ModalsDiscussion Club: 11/11/11

  • Agustin Rayo, MIT: The Construction of Logical SpaceGraduate Student Visiting Philosopher Series: 10/21/11

  • Nancy Sherman, Georgetown University: The Moral Psychic Reality of War Sponsored by the Program on Ethics and Public Life: 10/12/11

  • Nancy Sherman, Georgetown University: Accountability for Emotions: Aristotle, the Stoics, and KantDiscussion Club: 10/14/11

  • Undergraduate Ancient Philosophy Conference: Logos Conference: 10/15/11-10/16/11
  • Legacy of Kant Conference III: The Fate of Kant after 1945: 9/16/11 - 9/17/11Speakers Included:Peter Gilgen, Cornell UniversityPeter Hohendahl, Cornell UniversityCristina Lafont, Northwestern  UniversityRichard Miller, Cornell UniversityEric Watkins, University of California, San DiegoGregory Lambert, Syracuse UniversityJeffrey Librett, University of OregonMichelle Kosch, Cornell University

  • Deliberation, Improvisation, and the Moral Life: A Conference Honoring the Work of Barbara Herman - 9/9/11 - 9/11/11Speakers Included:Allen Wood,  Indiana UniversityJoseph Raz, Columbia University & Oxford UniversityMarcia Baron,  Indiana UniversitySeana Shiffrin, UCLARae Langton, MITPeter Railton, University of Michigan

  • Event Highlight: Life Raft Debate

    Imagine that after an apocalyptic event; a group of five professors from Classics, Philosophy, Theater, Film & Dance, English, and finally Physics plead for the last remaining seat on the last remaining life raft. They argue why their discipline should be chosen to live on and contribute towards the creation of a new society. This lively, thought-provoking debate occurred February 22, 2011. Read the article or watch the video.

    Alumni Highlight: Alumnus Jeffrey Gentleman ('94) Journalist

    After receiving his B.A. in Philosophy from the Sage School, Gettleman pursued a Master of Philosophy at Oxford University. He now is the East Africa bureau chief for The New York Times. Read some of his articles.

    Gettleman speaks about South Sudan, Independence, and Oil in an interview with Fareed Zakaria on CNN.  Watch the video.

    Gettleman reporting From Mogadishu on NPR. Read the article.

    Chignell Article One of Best of 2010 in Philosophy

    Professor Andrew Chignell's article, "Real Repugnance and Belief About Things-in-Themselves: A Problem and Kant's Three Solutions", has been selected by The Philosopher's Annual as one of the ten best articles published in philosophy in 2010.

    News Highlights

  • 01/12 Cornell Chronicle:  Professor Richard Miller, Public lecture series to explore the rise of China
  • 01/12 Cornell Chronicle:  Professor Ted Sider, Metaphysics is Not Just Semantics
  • 05/11 Prof. Cornell Store Events: Derk Pereboom gives talk on newest book, Consciousness And The Prospects Of Physicalism

  • 04/11 Cornell Chronicle: Philosophy in the City, Karen Bennett gives public presentation in Manhattan

  • 09/10 Cornell Chronicle: Conference Builds Bridge Between Philosophy and Psychology

  • 04/10 Cornell Chronicle: Peter Adamson, King's College, Gives the College of Arts and Sciences Humanities Lecture

  • 11/09 Cornell Chronicle: Scott MacDonald Appointed New house dean, to join West Campus

  • 03/08 Cornell Chronicle: Richard Miller Organizes Conference on Climate Change

  • 10/07 Cornell Chronicle: Sage School of Philosophy receives $4 million gift

  • 04/07 Scholarly Journal Medieval Philosophy and Theology Finds an Online Home