News

On May 3rd and 4th, the Duke Philosophy Department hosted "Brandonfest: A Conference in Honor of Robert Brandon's Career." We brought back students from Robert's nearly 50-year career at Duke University to honor him, his work, and wish him a happy retirement. The speakers -- all of whom are either collaborators, students, or grand-students of Robert's -- included Caleb Hazelwood (Duke), Alex Rosenberg (Duke), Dan McShea (Duke), Brent Mishler (UC Berkeley), Sarah Sculco (Michigan), Fred Bouchard (Montreal), Chris Haufe (Case… read more about Departmental Newsletter: April - May 2024 »

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong had a great spring break in England! Laura Soter and Shanna Slank joined him for a workshop in London on comity at the beginning. Then Arielle Rothenberg and Ithika Senthilnathan (Duke undergrads) joined him for a workshop in Oxford on patient preference predictors at the end. Highlights included a trip to Darwin's house and talks with two Duke alumni groups. Ben Sarbey presented this month on “The Vulnerable Populations… read more about Departmental Newsletter: March 2024 »

A proposal by Ben Eva and Reuben Stern has been selected for funding through the Faculty Advancement Seed Grant Program in the Office for Faculty Advancement. The grant will provide support for the Duke Causation Group (DCG) – an interdisciplinary research group that meets regularly to discuss topics relating to causation and causal inference from a variety of perspectives. The group was started in fall 2022, and since then it’s helped to bring together local researchers from across the university with interests in… read more about Duke Causation Group »

  Benjamin Eva, Shanna Slank, and Reuben Stern teamed up with Rush Stewart of KCL to publish their paper, "An Impossibility Theorem for Base Rate Tracking and Equalised Odds," in Analysis. Reuben also published his paper, "The Chances of Choices," in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. Yuan gave a presentation, "When Player Authorship Trumps Prescribed Agency" at the AFK in FAU (The Second Annual Philosophy of Video Games… read more about Departmental Newsletter: February 2024 »

At our Holiday Party in December, we celebrated a year of research, with dozens of papers and several books published. We are very proud of the year we have had as a department -- full of exciting colloquia, productive contributions to the field, and strong intellectual community. We began the new year with an all-department meeting. The highlight was the announcement of the… read more about Department Newsletter: December 2023-January 2024 »

Professor Jennifer Jhun Who is/are your favorite philosopher(s)? Why? I never have a good answer to this question, so I will offer the answer to a different one. One philosopher I happen to be having a lot of fun reading these days is Thomas Hobbes.  How would you describe your research program? My interests are a bit eclectic, but my main research program investigates how economists construct and use models. Themes like explanation, idealization… read more about Research Highlight »

Felipe De Brigard has published a book! His new Cambridge Element in Philosophy of Mind surveys research on three central and interrelated issues about the nature of memory and remembering. The first is about the nature of memory as a cognitive faculty. This part discusses different strategies to distinguish memory from other cognitive faculties as well as different proposed taxonomies to differentiate distinct kinds of memory. The second issue concerns what memory does,… read more about Departmental Newsletter: November 2023 »

Professor Benjamin Eva Who is/are your favorite philosopher(s)? Why? My answer to this changes pretty often, but Wittgenstein, MacIntyre, Hume, Russell, Carnap and Keynes are definitely near the top. Oh, and my colleague Reuben Stern is my favorite person to do philosophy with (I had to say that since he listed me).  How would you describe your research program? Well, I like to work on a lot of different things, but here’s a quick description of two of my main research… read more about Research Highlight »

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Tara Weese, who successfully defended their dissertation on Monday, October 30th. Tara is currently an Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Political Science at Central Connecticut State University. Sometimes, philosophy is best done in the open air, with no PowerPoints, no handouts, and no props of any kind. Hosted by Walter and joined by Katherine, Ben, Jennifer, Kevin, Reuben, the faculty research retreat at… read more about Departmental Newsletter: October 2023 »

Professor Reuben Stern Who is/are your favorite philosopher(s)? Why? Can I answer by naming my colleague, Ben Eva? Or my wife, Shanna Slank? They're my favorite people to do philosophy with. But if they're ineligible, then probably David Lewis. I don't agree with him about much, but I love reading his work. I'm especially fond of the papers that are included in his Philosophical Papers, Volume II. How would you describe your research program?… read more about Research Highlight »

Message from the Chair:  Thank you to everyone who came to our start-of-year all-department meeting, where we reconnected with one another, welcomed our new graduates students, postdocs, and visitors, and looked ahead to a terrific line-up of speakers and a bunch of exciting graduate seminars. It was great to see you and to feel all the energy in the room. I am partipating in a year-long series of events focussed on equity-centered academic leadership, alongside other faculty from… read more about Departmental Newsletter: September 2023 »

The 4th Annual Social Metaphysics Workshop was held on Duke's campus from June 1-3rd, 2023. It was another successful workshop at Duke, and I would like to share more about the workshop and its significance. The Social Metaphysics Workshop is, well, a workshop about social metaphysics. The subject of social metaphysics includes questions like: What is the nature of money, laws, nations, borders, corporations, property, etc? What does it mean for a group to believe something? What does it mean for a group to be an agent… read more about Duke Hosts Social Metaphysics Workshop »

Professor Kevin Richardson Who is/are your favorite philosopher(s)? Why? I don't have a favorite philosopher, but if I could build a favorite philosopher out of multiple philosophers, I would use Aristotle, Marx, and Rudolf Carnap as ingredients. How would you describe your research program? I give an analysis of social categories as scalar (viz., come in degrees) and indeterminate (viz., vague, open-ended). Traditionally, philosophers have thought… read more about Research Highlight »

Emily Kluge attended Fudan University's philosophy summer school on early modern philosophy in Shanghai from August 5th to 16th. Guest professors from both China and abroad lectured on the moral and political philosophies of Machiavelli, Hobbes, Kant, Hume, Hanfeizi, and Lord Shang. Ásta, Kevin Richardson, and Dylan Brown each presented papers at Social Ontology 2023 in Stockholm, Sweden. Ásta also participated in the panel titled "Social Ontology:… read more about Departmental Newsletter: August 2023 »

In the fall of 2023, Duke Philosophy will welcome seven new graduate students to our department. We are so excited that they will be joining us. Each new student has written a brief introduction. If you have overlapping research interests, deep-seated disagreements about football club loyalties, or just want to say hi, be sure to reach out to them! Thomas Carnes joins us after receiving his MA in Philosophy from Tufts University in 2017 and his BA… read more about Departmental Newsletter: June-July 2023 »

In March 2023, several Duke undergraduates presented original research papers at the North Carolina Philosophical Society. The papers reflect a robust range of philosophical interests among our undergraduate students: Confucian Democracy, the ethics of organ procurement, Nietzsche, reparations for African Americans, and images of love in Shakespeare. We have compiled some of those papers into an undergraduate proceedings, which you can download here: Download Undergraduate Proceedings of… read more about Departmental Newsletter: May 2023 »

On April 15, the MIT Harvard Club Colombia honored Felipe De Brigard with a 2023 Beyond Leadership Award. Recognizing those who “who have made valuable contributions to society in Colombia,” including “outstanding individuals who have demonstrated creativity, innovation and a commitment to social, economic, or environmental progress in Colombia,” the awards were announced at the MIT Harvard Club Summit in the capital of Bogotá. Featured guests included former president of Colombia and 2016 Nobel Peace Prize winner Juan… read more about De Brigard Honored for Work in Colombia »