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Ronald E. Moore Humanities Symposium: Consciousness

March 27-29, 2014
Welcoming internationally renowned philosophers to present recent scholarship on consciousness and the human mind.

Featured Speakers

Jesse Prinz is a Distinguished Professor of philosophy and director of the Committee for Interdisciplinary Science Studies at the City University of New York, Graduate Center. Previous positions include the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Washington University, St. Louis, with visiting positions at University College, London; California Institute of Technology; and University of Maryland, College Park. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago under the direction of Murat Aydede, a philosopher of cognitive science now at the University of British Columbia.

His work focuses on the role of perception, emotion, and culture and their influence on human thought and values. His most recent book isBeyond Human Nature with Penguin Press. He is also the author of Furnishing the Mind Concepts and Their Perceptual Basis and Gut Reactions: A Perceptual Theory of Emotion , The Emotional Construction of Morals, and The Conscious Brain. He has published numerous articles on concepts, emotions, morals, consciousness, and other topics. Much of his work in these areas has been a defense of empiricism gainst psychological nativism, and he situates his work as in the naturalistic tradition of philosophy associated with David Hume.

Katalin Balog – Rutgers University, Newark

Balog joined the Rutgers-Newark Philosophy Department in the fall of 2010 and is currently also a member of the Graduate Faculty in the Philosophy Department at Rutgers, New Brunswick.

Her primary areas of research are the philosophy of mind/psychology and metaphysics. The problems that interest her most, the mind-body problem, the self, and free will, lie at their intersection. She also has a deep interest in Buddhist psychology and philosophy. She is trying to find ways to integrate contemplative practice and theory into her teaching and research.

Brit Brogaard – University of Missouri, St. Louis

Brit Brogaard joined the University of Missouri, St. Louis Department of Philosophy in 2005. She is also the director of the St. Louis Synesthesia Research Team and the American editor of the international philosophy journal Erkenntnis

Her current research is located at the intersection of philosophy of mind and psychology. Her most current empirical project investigates the connection between synesthesia and savant syndrome. She has authored and co-authored papers which have appeared in various journals and edited volumes. Her bookTransient Truths: An Essay in the Metaphysics of Propositions appeared with Oxford University Press in 2012. She is currently working on her second book entitled Seeing and Saying.

Christian Coseru – College of Charleston

Christian Coseru joined the Philosophy Department at the College of Charleston in 2005. He recently co-directed an NEH Summer Institute on “Investigating Consciousness: Buddhist and Contemporary Philosophical Perspectives.”

His current research is in the philosophy of mind, phenomenology of perception, naturalized epistemology, and Buddhist philosophy. His most recent work focuses on the intersections between phenomenology and cognitive science, and on classical Indian and Buddhist theories of perception. He is the author of Perceiving Reality: Consciousness, Intentionality, and Cognition in Buddhist Philosophy (Oxford University Press, 2012), and his articles have appeared in various journals and edited collections. He is currently working on his second book entitled Presence of Mind: A Theory of Reflexive Sensibility.

Bob Kentridge – Durham University

Bob Kentridge’s research falls into two related strands, one examining the relationship between visual attention and visual consciousness and the other the perception of the material properties of objects. In both areas he has tested the deficits suffered by neuropsychological patients in order to arrive at hypotheses about the manner in which psychological functions are broken down into sub-processes in the brain. He has since tested these hypotheses using neuroimaging and psychophysical methods in normal people.

Vanessa Miller – Texas Christian University

Vanessa Miller earned her Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from the University of California, Riverside in 2011. Her research interests are in the field of cognitive affective neuroscience. Her research focuses on hemispheric processing of emotional language, specifically in the facilitation of hemispheric asymmetries via emotion perception and emotional mood. Miller also has a background in clinical psychology in which she has experience working with clinical populations, conducting cognitive, neuropsychological and therapeutic tests and assessments. Miller’s teaching focuses on human neuropsychology, abnormal psychology, principles of behavior and behavior research.

David Papineau – King’s College London

David Papineau has lectured at Reading University, Macquarie University, Birkbeck College London, and Cambridge University. He is presently Professor of Philosophy of Science at King’s College London. He was elected President of the British Society for the Philosophy of Science for 1993-5, of the Mind Association for 2009-10, and of the Aristotelian Society for 2013-4.

Papineau works on issues in metaphysics, philosophy of science, and the philosophy of mind and psychology. He has written For Science in the Social Sciences (1978), Theory and Meaning (1979),Reality and Representation (1987), Philosophical Naturalism (1993) and Introducing Consciousness(2000). His Thinking about Consciousness was published in 2002. The Roots of Reason, 2003 is a collection of essays on rationality, decision, and evolution, and his latest book Philosophical Devices: Proofs, Probabilities, Possibilities and Sets was published in 2012.

Amber Ross – University of Toronto

Amber Ross is a Research Associate with the Network for Sensory Research at the University of Toronto. She specializes in philosophy of mind and philosophy of language, especially consciousness and the mind-body problem. She earned a B.A. from Texas Christian University, an M.A. from Tufts University and Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Prior to coming to the University of Toronto she was a Research Fellow at the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University.

Susan Schneider – University of Connecticut

Schneider’s current work is on the nature of the mind and self, which she examines from the vantage point of issues in philosophy of mind, cognitive science, metaphysics, philosophy of science, philosophy of mathematics and neuroethics. In her book The Language of Thought : A New Philosophical Direction (MIT 2011) she restructured one influential computational approach to the mind. Lately, she has been digging deeper into more general, metaphysical aspects of computational approaches to the mind, as well as investigating the other orthodox approaches to the mind and self. She’s currently writing a book on these themes, and beginning a related book in metaphysics.

Michael Tye – University of Texas at Austin

Michael Tye’s interests are in philosophy of mind, cognitive science, metaphysics, and philosophical logic, especially problems relating to vagueness.

Tye has published four books on consciousness: Ten Problems of Consciousness (1995) andConsciousness, Color, and Content (MIT 2000). These 2 books defend what has come to be known as the representationalist approach to phenomenal consciousness. Consciousness and Persons, (Bradford, MIT 2003) is on the unity of consciousness and the fourth book is Consciousness Revisited: Materialism without Phenomenal Concepts (2009 MIT).

Kenneth Williford – University of Texas at Arlington

Ken Williford is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy and Humanities at UT Arlington. He works primarily in the areas of Philosophy of Mind, Phenomenology, and the History of Modern Philosophy. He is the author of several articles on consciousness and self-consciousness and is co-editor of Millikan and her Critics (Wiley-Blackwell 2013, with D. Ryder and J. Kingsbury) as well as Self-Representational Approaches to Consciousness (MIT 2006, with Uriah Kriegel).