THE UNIT FOR HISTORY AND PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE

IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE SYDNEY CENTRE FOR THE FOUNDATIONS OF SCIENCE

2017 RESEARCH SEMINARS

The HPS Research Seminar Series runs on selected Mondays during Semester time.

All Welcome. No Booking Required. Free

Please note NEW START TIME: 5:30

CCANESA MEETING ROOM, MADSEN BUILDING
CAMPERDOWN CAMPUS

Best access to CCANESA is from the Eastern Avenue entrance of the Madsen Building. When you enter you will be on the 3rd floor. Please proceed across the foyer and take the stairs on the right up one floor. The door to CCANESA will be straight ahead on this landing


Research Seminar Series - Semester 1, 2016
Date Venue Speaker Topic
March 13

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

Barbara Osimani, PhD

Assistant Professor

Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München


 

March 27th

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

Huw Price
Bertrand Russell Professor of Philosophy
Academic Director, CSER (cser.org) & CFI (lcfi.ac.uk)
University of Cambridge

RAMSEY, AGENCY AND CAUSATION

April 10th

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

Michael Devitt
Distinguished Professor of Philosophy The Graduate Center The City University of New York.


 HISTORICAL BIOLOGICAL ESSENTIALISM

The consensus in the philosophy of biology is that a taxon’s essence or nature is wholly historical. In “Resurrecting Biological Essentialism” (2008), I rejected this consensus in arguing that there is an intrinsic component to the essence. Still I accepted that there was also an historical component. But why believe that there is? This paper begins with an argument, drawing on the literature, that this component is required by historical/evolutionary explanations. But most of the paper is concerned with another question. What precisely is this historical component?  An answer must be complete in that it distinguishes one taxon from another; for example, zebras from horses. An answer must be plausible in that posits an essence that can bear the explanatory burden. Despite asking around, I have been surprisingly unable to find a worked out complete and plausible answer in the literature. I go on to propose one: the relevant history of a taxon is of organisms of a certain intrinsic kind evolving into organisms of a certain other intrinsic kind, until we reach the taxon in question. The consensus is right that there is an historical component to the essence of a taxon but that component requires that there also be an intrinsic component.

April 24th

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

Albert Atkin

Macquarie University

 
May 8th

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

 

Greg Dawes
Associate Professor
Department of Philosophy
University of Otago
Dunedin
NZ
 
 

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

   
 

CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

 


 

 

 CCANESA Meeting Room

Madsen Building

 


 

 END SEMESTER ONE

2017

TBA

 RESEARCH

PRESENTATION

DAY