Department Events

Upcoming Events

2018 Mar 02

Ethics of Belief Workshop

Fri - Sat, Mar 2 to Mar 3, 9:00am - 6:00pm


Thompson Room, Barker Center, 12 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA

Professors Selim Berker and Susanna Rinard invite you to attend a workshop on the "Ethics of Belief" on March 2nd and 3rd. Speakers will include:

  • Stewart Cohen
  • Richard Foley
  • Pamela Hieronymi
  • Jim Joyce
  • Miriam McCormick
  • Conor McHugh
  • Susanna Rinard
  • Nishi Shah

Details about the workshop are forthcoming.

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Past Events

2017 Apr 21

Book discussion with Professor Susanna Siegel



Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge MA

Please join Edgar Pierce Professor of Philosophy at Harvard Susanna Siegel at the Harvard Book Store for a discussion of her new book The Rationality of Perception. This is event is being supported by the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics as part of their series "Ethics in Your World."

2017 Apr 17

Harvard History of Philosophy Workshop: Lucy Allais (UC San Diego) "Kant's Racism"

4:00pm to 5:30pm


Robbins Library, Emerson 211

Lucy Allais, Henry E. Allison Endowed Chair in the History of Philosophy (UC San Diego) will present a talk entitled "Kant's Racism" to the History of Philosophy Workshop at Harvard University on April 17, 2017 from 4-5:30 in Robbins Library (Emerson 211). A reception in the library will follow.

2017 Apr 11

David Chalmers (NYU) "The Virtual and the Real"



Emerson Hall 305

David Chalmers (NYU): The Virtual and the Real

The Harvard Review of Philosophy is pleased to welcome Professor David Chalmers of New York University on Tuesday, April 11th. Chalmers, an esteemed philosopher know for his work in the philosophy of mind and in the allied areas of philosophy and cognitive science, is the author of The Conscious Mind: In Search of  a Fundamental Theory, editor of several collections of essays, and the co-director of PhilPapers.



2017 Apr 08

Harvard/MIT Graduate Philosophy Conference

(All day)


Emerson Hall 305

9.00am - 9.30am: Breakfast

9.30am - 10.50am: Michelle M. Dyke ‘From Normative Disagreement o Normative Antirealism?’

Commentator: Doug Kremm

11.00am - 12.20pm: Jonah Nagashima ‘What Counts as Fundamental?’

Commentator: David Balcarras

12.20pm - 1.30pm: Lunch

1.30pm - 2.50pm: Wes Siscoe ‘Sui Generis Linguistic Norms’

Commentator: Samia Hesni

3.00pm - 4.20pm: Max Lewis ‘The Goldilocks Dilemma for Pessimists about...

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2017 Apr 01

Teleology within Physics?: Optimization Principles from Leibniz to the Modern Day

(All day)


Robbins Library, Emerson 211

This workshop aims to investigate the rise and implications of seemingly teleological laws and principles of nature from the 17th century to the modern day.

It is a familiar story that natural teleology played an important role in Ancient and Medieval philosophy. Things were held to strive towards their natural place in the universe: Fire rises in order to reach the heavens, rocks fall in order to reach the center of the earth. Such explanatory appeals to ends, purposes, final causation and the general order of nature were largely contested with the birth of the mechanical philosophy...

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2017 Mar 31

Philosophy Alumni Panel

1:00pm to 2:30pm


Robbins Library, Emerson 211

As part of Advising Fortnight 2017, the Department of Philosophy welcomes students to a philosophy alumni panel on Friday, March 31st at 1PM in Robbins Library.

2016 Dec 12

Emerson Hall Poetry Night



Robbins Library of Philosophy, Emerson Hall 211

Join your fellow philosopher-poets in Robbins Library for an evening of familiar and original readings.

Refreshments will be served and guests are welcome. 


2016 Nov 10

Colloquium Lecture: Peter Railton (Michigan)

4:00pm to 6:00pm


Emerson Hall 305

Peter Railton (Michigan): First Steps Toward an Epistemology of Intuition in Ethics

Abstract:  Appeals to intuition and intuitions have figured in philosophy at least since Socrates, and in the intervening millennia intuition and intuitions have been put to use for a variety of philosophical purposes, especially, in order to escape worries about regress in perception, thought, and action.  Today, the method of appealing to intuitions in thought experiments has become central to many areas of philosophy—though there has been some dissent over...

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2016 Nov 03

Harvard Logic Colloquium: Theodore Slaman

4:00pm to 6:00pm


Logic Center, Room 420, 2 Arrow Street

Theodore A. Slaman (University of California Berkeley): Recursion Theory and Diophantine Approximation

Recursion Theory deals with the definability of sets, especially sets of natural numbers or equivalently
real numbers. Diophantine Approximation deals with the approximation of real numbers by rational
numbers, which can be viewed as a number theoretic form of definability. We will discuss connections
between these areas.

2016 Oct 21

Conference on Normative Ethics and Welfare Economics

Fri - Sat, Oct 26 to Oct 27, 8:15am - 5:00pm


Harvard Business School, Room 340 Chao Center

The conference will bring together economists and philosophers to discuss normative issues at the boundary of the two disciplines. Presentations and discussions will be of broad interest to scholars in the social sciences and the humanities. We invite faculty members and graduate students with research interests in this area, as well as undergraduates and other interested scholars, to join us. For more information visit

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2016 Oct 20

Harvard Logic Colloquium: Joel Hamkins

4:00pm to 5:00pm


Logic Center, Room 420, 2 Arrow Street

Joel Hamkins (City University of New York): Recent Advances in Set-theoretic Geology

Set-theoretic geology is the study of the set-theoretic universe V in the context of all its ground models and those of its forcing extensions. For example, a bedrock of the universe is a minimal ground model of it and the mantle is the intersection of all grounds. In this talk, I shall explain some recent advances, including especially the breakthrough result of Toshimichi Usuba, who proved the strong downward directed grounds hypothesis: for any set-indexed family of...

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2016 Sep 21

Emerson Hall Poetry Night



Robbins Library, Emerson 211

For those who are unfamiliar with the series, we in the Philosophy Department host an informal open-mic night: people sign up for slots during which they can read their own poetry or any other poetry that they really enjoy (or, really, anything creative). The basic idea is to get together to affirm our collective humanity through worship of the expressive possibilities of the English language. People read others' work and sometimes original poetry or translations; some people come just to listen; we have had readings in Old English (!), Latin, Spanish, French, Polish, and Dutch; sometimes...

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