Kwame Anthony Appiah is Professor of Philosophy and Law at New York University. After receiving his PhD from Cambridge University, he taught at Yale, Cornell, Duke, and Harvard universities; from 2002 to 2013 he was a member of the Princeton University faculty, where he had appointments in the Philosophy Department and the University Center for Human Values. He has worked on the philosophy of mind, the philosophy of language, African and African-American literary and cultural studies. His major current work has to do (a) with the social and psychological presuppositions of democracy, (b) with questions of method in arriving at knowledge about values and c) with the connection between theory and practice in moral life. He is also working on a larger project exploring some of the many ways in which we now think about religion. Among his publications are Assertion and Conditionals (Cambridge UP, 1985), For Truth in Semantics (Blackwell, 1986), In My Father’s House (Oxford UP, 1993), The Ethics of Identity (Princeton UP, 2005), Experiments in Ethics (Harvard UP, 2008), and Lines of Descent: W. E. B. Du Bois and the Emergence of Identity (Harvard UP, 2014). For more information, please visit his homepage. To watch the talk, click here.
Pierre Jacob holds a CNRS position at the Institut Jean Nicod in Paris. He was director of the Institut Jean Nicod and was elected President of the European Society for Philosophy and Psychology. He worked on the rise and fall of logical empiricism in the philosophy of science and the metaphysics of intentionality from a naturalistic perspective. In the past fifteen years, his work has shifted from the metaphysics of intentionality to the philosophy of the cognitive sciences, where he has investigated the two-visual systems model of human vision and published papers devoted to issues in human social cognition, including the significance of the discovery of mirror neurons, empathy, mind-reading and moral cognition. Some of his publications are L’empirisme logique, ses antécédents, ses critiques (Editions de Minuit, 1980), De Vienne à Cambridge, l’héritage du positivisme logique (Gallimard, 1980), What Minds Can Do (Cambridge UP, 1997), Ways of Seeing, the Scope and Limits of Visual Cognition (Oxford UP, 2003, with Marc Jeannerod), and L’Intentionnalité, problèmes de philosophie de l’esprit (Odile Jacob, 2004). For more information, please visit his homepage. To watch the talk, click here.
Rae Langton is Professor of Philosophy at Cambridge, Fellow of Newnham College and the incoming Knightbridge Professor of Philosophy. She was educated in India (Hebron School), Australia (Sydney, B.A. Hons.), and the USA (Princeton, PhD). She was Professor of Moral Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh and Professor of Philosophy at MIT. She has a long-standing interest in speech acts and social justice, arguing that certain forms of speech, including hate speech and some pornography, can subordinate people, altering social norms and authority patterns, and legitimating inequality. She also works in ethics, metaphysics, epistemology, and the history of philosophy. She furthermore has a project about empathy and imagination, and their role in aesthetics and ethics. She maintains a strong interest in Kant, which connects with her independent interest in the metaphysics of intrinsic properties. She is the author of Kantian Humility: Our Ignorance of Things in Themselves (Oxford UP, 1998), and Sexual Solipsism: Philosophical Essays on Pornography and Objectification (Oxford UP, 2009); among her articles are ‘Speech Acts and Unspeakable Acts’, ‘Duty and Desolation’, and ‘Defining Intrinsic’ (co-authored with David Lewis). For more information, please visit her homepage. To watch the talk, click here.