Current Topic: Words and Power

Whilst many historical contributions to “liberation” philosophy (the philosophies of race, gender, sexuality, disability, etc) have come from outside analytic philosophy, more recent works have either heavily employed analytic methodology or simply been a work of analytic philosophy. In particular, philosophy of language has played an invaluable role by providing new tools for understanding oppression and disadvantage. Concepts such as hermeneutical injustice and conceptual engineering, whilst clear and distinct products of the analytic tradition, are becoming invaluable assets to liberation philosophy. Moreover, the use of these concepts in practical philosophy is driving innovation in the theoretical domain. Old debates, such as Internalism vs Externalism about meaning, are being driven back into the foreground in order to facilitate the needs of applied philosophy.
Our topic focuses on three areas: liberation philosophy, philosophy of language, and the intersection of the two. Consequently it takes a very broad-scoped look at a number of surprisingly interconnected fields in philosophy. A practical consequence of this is a very topically diverse program, whilst still remaining “on a theme”. This is advantageous so as to provide papers of interest to a wider range of people. It involves works both from very applied liberation philosophy and from highly theoretical philosophy of language, and everything in between. The consequence is a broad but topically connected program that fulfills both a function of social engagement, as well a thorough and rigorous exploration of theoretical, analytic philosophy.

Check out our Graduate Conference regarding this topic: Just Saying? A graduate conference on the social and political implications of language and its philosophy.