On October 15th, Oswaldo Porchat Pereira passed away. This is very sad news particularly for the Brazilian philosophical community. Porchat pursued his undergraduate and graduate studies in philosophy at the Universidade de São Paulo (USP), obtaining a Ph.D. with a dissertation on Aristotle’s conception of science. He spent research periods in the United States, the United Kingdom, and France. He was the founder of both the philosophy department and the Centro de Lógica, Epistemologia e História da Ciência at the Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). He considered himself a skeptic and devoted his work almost exclusively to discussing Sextus Empiricus's Pyrrhonism. His teaching and writings exerted a strong influence on his students (e.g., Plínio Junqueira Smith, Luiz Eva, Otávio Bueno, Roberto Bolzani), to the extent that several of them devoted their own work to the study of skepticism, creating in Brazil a relatively large community of academics interested in that philosophical movement. At the time of his death, he was emeritus professor at USP. I met him once in 2014, in São Paulo, when I gave a talk about his neo-Pyrrhonism, which is expounded in a series of papers collected in Rumo ao Ceticismo (Editora UNESP, 2007). It is quite hard to determine exactly what his skeptical stance consists in, but as he told me then, he always took his latest paper to be the true expression of his thought and was largely unconcerned with whether it was consistent with the ideas expounded in his previous writings. He seemed to be a gentle person.
Friday, October 13, 2017
Giuseppe Veltri (Hamburg) will give the lecture “Negotiating the Principle of (Non)-Contradiction: Johann Frischmuth (1619-1687) on the Rabbinic Sceptic Dialectic” both at Johns Hopkins University (October 24th) and at Princeton University (October 25th). For more information, click here and here, respectively.
Tuesday, October 10, 2017
Thursday, October 5, 2017
On October 13-15, the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières (Canada) will host the conference “Scepticisme, rhétorique et politique à l'âge classique.” You can read the program by going here or by clicking on the images below.
Thursday, September 28, 2017
The following collective volume has just been published: J.-C. Darmon, P. Desan, and G. Paganini (eds.), Scepticisme et pensée morale: De Michel de Montaigne à Stanley Cavell (Paris: Hermann, 2017). Contributors include Matteo Vincenzo D'Alfonso, Jean-Charles Darmon, Philippe Desan, Emiliano Ferrari, Sylvia Giocanti, Michel Jarrety, Denis Kambouchner, Sandra Laugier, John Christian Laursen, Christophe Litwin, Guillaume Métayer, Nicola Panichi, Francine Pessel Markovits, Anne Staquet. For more information, go here.
Monday, September 4, 2017
Sunday, August 27, 2017
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Some authors have recently defended a skeptical view on the moral significance of disgust: feelings of disgust are irrelevant to the epistemic justification of moral judgments and norms. An article has just been published in Philosophers' Imprint challenging that view: “Foul Behavior,” by Victor Kumar. It can be accessed for free here.
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Quite a few years ago, I read that Roland Wittwer (Berlin) was working on a book about the first Latin translation of Sextus's Pyrrhonian Outlines. The title was supposed to be something like Sextus Latinus: Die erste lateinische Übersetzung von Sextus Empiricus' Pyrrôneioi Hypotypôseis. A couple of days ago, I discovered by chance that in the end he published an article on the issue: “Sextus Empiricus' Outlines of Pyrrhonism in the Middle Ages,” Vivarium 54 (2016). He calls into question the widely accepted view that Niccolò da Reggio was the author of that Latin translation of the Outlines. To read the article, click here.
Friday, July 28, 2017
For those interested in moral skepticism, there's a call for abstracts for the conference “Evolution & Moral Epistemology,” to be held at Utrecht University (The Netherlands) on April 18–20, 2018. For complete information, go here.
Monday, July 24, 2017
Today, Bryn Mawr Classical Review published Máté Veres's review of A.-I. Bouton-Touboulic & C. Lévy (eds.), Scepticisme et religion: constantes et évolutions, de la philosophie hellénistique à la philosophie médiévale (Brepols, 2016). Click here to read it.