New Philosophy Colloquium Series

Moreover, the monthly colloquia are intended to strengthen the community of VU philosophers and to enhance the visibility of their research activities for colleagues and students alike. Most VU philosophers are affiliated with CLUE+, and in particular with its fourth Research Cluster: Knowledge Formation and Its History. By bringing together philosophers, students, and other members of CLUE+, the Philosophy Colloquium Series aspires to create an interdisciplinary research culture and encourage fruitful interaction between students and academics with various backgrounds.

The colloquia will typically feature a longer presentation by an invited speaker - either a guest speaker or a VU staff member – followed by one or two shorter commentaries. There will be ample room for discussion. After the colloquium drinks will be served by student association Icarus. The series started in January 2017, and thus far two colloquia have been organized: the first colloquium featured Rik Peels (VU) on his new book Responsible Belief (OUP, 2017), with commentaries by Katrien Schaubroeck (Antwerpen) and Jonathan Soeharno (UvA). The second colloquium featured Michael Eze (UvA) on enlightenment, nostalgia and postcolonial disquiet, with a commentary by Angela Roothaan (VU).

Upcoming Colloquia:

Professor Robert Audi (University of Notre Dame, USA)

DATE: Friday, October 6, 2017

TIME: 14:00-15:30

VENUE: room HG-0G10, VU Main Building G-wing, De Boelelaan 1105, Amsterdam.



14:00 – Opening and introduction

14:10 – 15:00 Lecture by prof. Audi

15:00 – 15:30 Q&A/discussion

All are welcome to attend.

The Place of the University in Democratic Societies: Intellectual Standards, Ethical Citizenship, and Meaningful Life

What is the right balance between universities as having the intellectual responsibility to enhance knowledge and develop minds and the “practical” function of contributing to the capacity of students—and others—for citizenship?  Can a university achieve both aims if it is “value free?”  And if an educational institution is not value free, as with church-affiliated schools, what special efforts might this impose on universities in preparing students to function well in pluralistic and often increasingly secular societies?  These questions about the role of universities and other educational institutions should not be thought to imply that their function is wholly instrumental.  But should they not be instrumental in contributing to the meaningfulness of human lives?  This presentation will focus on all these questions.   

About the speaker: Robert Audi is John A. O'Brien Professor of Philosophy at Notre Dame, USA. He works in ethics and political philosophy, epistemology, philosophy of mind and action, and philosophy of religion. His latest book is Means, Ends, and Persons:  The Meaning and Psychological Dimensions of Kant’s Humanity Formula (Oxford University Press, 2016).