Call for Abstracts

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Call for Abstracts
The Vienna Forum for Analytic Philosophy (WFAP) will host a
Workshop with Stephen Yablo (MIT)
on the topic
“What is philosophy about?”
on 2 August 2019
at the University of Vienna (Austria).

One of the hottest topics in the philosophy of logic and language is aboutness – what it is for a text to be about a subject matter. The debate centres on Stephen Yablo’s Aboutness (2014). In this book, he proposes an account of subject matter as the set of sets of possible worlds making a statement true (“trueways”) or false (“falseways”), and explores its applications in a variety of areas, including confirmation theory, epistemology and epistemic scepticism, truthmaking, (pre-)supposition, fictional statements and metaphors. Since its appearance, efforts have been made to develop competing accounts of subject matter (e.g. by Fine (2018), Schipper (2017, 2018), Hawke (2018)) and to apply aboutness in other areas (e.g. in hyperintensionality (Leitgeb 2017, 2018), or imagination (Berto 2018)). However, so far, aboutness has not been turned on philosophy. For this 3rd workshop in the WFAP’s metaphilosophy series, we are therefore inviting Stephen Yablo to consider what philosophy itself is about.

We invite advanced graduate students and early career researchers to contribute high-quality papers on one of the following or related topics, taking Yablo’s work into account:

  • What role can aboutness play in philosophy?
  • What role should aboutness play in philosophy?
  • Is philosophy a subject matter?
  • What is aboutness? What is a subject matter? What role do they play in metaphilosophy?
  • What sort of thing can have a subject matter?
  • What is it to be partly about a subject matter? What is it to share a subject matter?
  • Does philosophy, or can philosophy, share (a) subject matter(s) with other disciplines?
  • Is a discipline defined by its subject matter?
  • What role does a subject matter play in(self-) defining a discipline?

We especially encourage submissions from members of groups that are underrepresented in philosophy.

The format of the workshop is as follows: The day will begin with a talk by Stephen Yablo, which will be followed by 4 – 5 contributed papers. All papers will be distributed among the participants in advance for pre-reading.

Submission information:
Abstracts of approximately 400 – 500 words should be in English and prepared for blind review. The author’s name, affiliation, the title of the submitted paper, and email address must be included in a separate document. Files should be submitted as PDFs and should be sent to:

All abstracts will be reviewed by members of the Vienna Forum for Analytic Philosophy and members of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Vienna. Accepted papers should be suitable for a 45-minute presentation and must be sent to the organizers in advance for distribution among all participants.

Extended deadline for submission of abstractsApril, 15 2019
Notification of Acceptance: Mid April 2019
Submission of papers: 12 July 2019

For any inquiries about the workshop, please contact: