Institut Jean Nicod

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Colloquium de philosophie de Jean Nicod


L’Institut Jean Nicod est heureux de vous présenter les colloquium de cette année. Ci-dessous le calendrier des intervenants.

Lieu : Salle de réunion de l’Institut Jean Nicod

Nous aurons un nombre limité d’emplacements pour les participants externes. Si vous souhaitez assister à une session, merci d’envoyer un mail environ une semaine avant cette session à Denis Buehler.



 Prochaines conférences



Michael Rescorla (UCLA)

"The Kolmogorovian Representational Theory of Mind"

Vendredi 10 juin 2022 à 11h

The core notion of Bayesian decision theory is credence --- a quantitative measure of the degree to which an agent believes a hypothesis. What are the “hypotheses” ? In other words, what are the objects of credence ? One popular view holds that the hypotheses are sets of worlds. Another popular view holds that the hypotheses are mental representations. I argue that neither view fits well with empirically successful Bayesian models of perception, motor control, navigation, and other low-level psychological domains. I argue that these low-level domains are best handled by a novel view that assigns credences to sets of mental representations.




Conférences passées



Miranda Fricker (CUNY)

"How Is Forgiveness Always A Gift ?"

Vendredi 20 mai 2022 à 11h

Many sense something gift-like at the heart of all forgiveness, and this seems right. It is clearly so of unconditional forms of forgiveness, where we forgive even in the absence of apology, for in such cases our forgiveness is fully elective or discretionary—a piece of extraordinary moral generosity. However, it is deeply puzzling to think how it might be true of conditional forms of forgiveness. In conditional cases a sufficient apology is seen to generate some sort of obligation to forgive, and there is a natural tension between the idea of obligation and the idea of a gift. I will dispel this tension, however, by showing that the obligation to forgive is an instance of the general Normativity of the Gift, according to which it is entirely ordinary to have an obligation to give a gift, and yet that gift can never be demanded as of right—not without radical pragmatic self-defeat. I thus explain our starting intuition, that all forgiveness is basically gift-like, not in terms of its never being obligatory (we often owe each other gifts), but rather in terms of its never being demandable as of right. There is no right to be forgiven, even when you are owed forgiveness, and this, I contend, is what explains our deep sense of the gift at the heart of all forgiveness.

Mona Simion (Glasgow)

"A Puzzle for the Normativity of Inquiry"

Vendredi 22 avril 2022 à 11h

This talk looks at a puzzle affecting views that take epistemic norms to be zetetic norms - i.e. norms of inquiry : since garden variety epistemic norms and straightforward norms of inquiry often come in conflict, and since it is implausible, for any given normative domain, that it should be such that it is peppered with internal normative conflict, it cannot be that epistemic norms are inquiry norms. I look at three ways to escape the puzzle, I argue that they don’t work, and put forth my own account. On this view, one is only the subject of epistemic normativityproper insofar as one is in a position to know. As such, I argue, normative conflicts do not arise in situations in which one is not in a position to know that p in virtue ofinquiring into whether q.

Paul Boghossian (NYU) - Session Spéciale

"Widespread puzzling beliefs"

Lundi 14 mars 2022 à 17h

Comment expliquer le fait que tant de personnes semblent aujourd’hui croire à des propositions qui ont été réfutées de manière décisive par les preuves disponibles ? L’exposé sera suivi de 15 minutes de commentaires de Gloria Origgi et d’une session de questions-réponses. Session spéciale organisé avec l’équipe Normes Epistémiques (Projet PeriTia). Pour assister à la réunion en présence, veuillez écrire à : Un lien zoom sera communiqué prochainement

Julia Langkau (Flensburg)

"Two Notions of Creativity"

Vendredi 11 mars 2022 à 11h

According to a widely-accepted definition originally provided by Margaret Boden, creativity is the ability to come up with ideas or artefacts that are new relative to some comparison class, that are surprising or unexpected, and that are in some way or other valuable, appropriate or useful. While this definition focuses on the creative product, our main interest when it comes to creativity is often a conscious and valuable imaginative process. This paper argues that current approaches to creativity blend together two different notions of creativity which should be kept apart : product creativity and process creativity. If we distinguish these two notions, we can resolve some current conceptual tensions concerning creativity and explain better how animals, artificial intelligence generated art and inventions, children’s drawings and exceptional humans can all be called ‘creative’.

Julie Jebeile (Berne)

"Values in climate science"

Vendredi 11 février 2022 à 11h

In this talk, I will highlight the different roles values can play in the production of climate information for mitigation and adaptation policies. First, I will explore how values are used to define modelling choices, to quantify uncertainties and probabilities, and to produce expert judgments. Second, I will address the possible difficulties that value influence may raise, in particular in terms of epistemic inequality. Finally, I will suggest ways to overcome such difficulties in managing values in climate science, through the explicitation of values, the involvement of stakeholders, and of deliberative groups.

Myrto Mylopoulos (Carleton)

"Agency as a Marker of Consciousness in the Gray Zone"

Vendredi 10 décembre 2021 à 11h

Studies of consciousness often treat verbal report as the “gold standard” for attributions of conscious mental states to another individual. But there are cases where this strategy is not available, for instance, in non-human animals and infants. In response, some have suggested that non-verbal behaviour, i.e., certain forms of agency, can be used as evidence of conscious awareness in such cases (e.g., Bayne 2012).

In this talk, I propose to explore the viability of such a view in the context of patients that have been diagnosed as having unresponsiveness wakefulness syndrome (UWS), and who exhibit no overt purposive responses to their environment, but nonetheless retain the ability to covertly follow certain commands, as evidenced by neuroimaging techniques. I first confront a set of skeptical challenges in the literature, which aim to cast doubt on the claim that the covert responses these individuals produce amount to intentional actions. Next, I argue that though their responses are genuinely intentional, we still do not have strong reasons to suppose that the relevant mental states that enable these individuals to produce them are conscious states. I end by addressing a primary motivation for determining whether UWS individuals are consciously aware, which is an assumed link between consciousness and moral status. I argue that this link is weaker than it seems

Dustin Stokes (Utah)

"The malleability of the mind"

Vendredi 29 octobre 2021 à 11h

Orthodoxy in philosophy of perception and cognitive science still has it that perception is modular. Indeed, modularity is treated by its proponents and opponents as the default theory. This default position assumption, I argue, is supported neither by strong arguments nor by superior explanatory power. Once we give up the assumption, genuine alternative architectures of the mind can be proposed and defended on their own merits rather than as counterexamples to the default. The alternative I defend is the malleability of the mind. Thinking not only affects perception, thinking improves perception. These broad claims are defended by appeal to a wide range of empirical research on perceptual expertise.

LA Paul (Yale)

“The intuitive theory of the self”

Vendredi 15 octobre 2021 à 11h

I explore the philosophical issues that arise when we explore the metaphysical structure of experience and the first personal self, especially with respect to causal and temporal experience.

Nirmalangshu Mukherjee (University of Delhi, India)

"Sound of Thoughts"

Vendredi 7 mai 2021 à 11h

All work on language assume a certain basic design feature of language : there is a thought part and there is a sensorimotor part. Human languages are distinguished in that these two parts are somehow put together. The task of a theory of language thus is to suggest explanatory models in which this design feature is predicted for each construction in each human language. This design feature has also motivated some researchers, such as Chomsky and Berwick (2016), to propose a ‘divide and rule’ policy : language basically concerns (structuring of) thought, sound is ‘ancillary’.

We develop some preliminary considerations to suggest that the Chomsky-Berwick proposal is radically false. We develop two related arguments. First, we show that thoughts involving singular terms are necessarily connected with sound. Hence, the description of human thought remains incomplete without sound-meaning correlation. Second, more fundamentally, we challenged the idea that there could be thought without antecedent sound/gesture. Sound/gesture gives the ‘body’ to thought ; sound/gesture enables thought to come to being, so to speak. If time permits, a range of consequences will be sketched.

Christopher Peacocke (Columbia)

"Philosophical and Empirical Aspects of Music Perception"

Vendredi 14 mai 2021 de 11h à 13h

This talk will address the question of what it is for music to possess emotional and other psychological content ; and what it is not. It will discuss the relations of the approach suggested to other recent theories (Robinson, Schlenker). More generally, it will address the relations between constitutive philosophical theories on the one hand and both scientific and historical issues on the other. It will consider the relation of a constitutive account to autism and musical understanding ; to the visual perception by the audience of musical performers ; and to the structure of underlying representations involved in music perception in the mind-brain. Time permitting, it will also discuss the contributions constitutive philosophical accounts can make to the characterization of musical styles.

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