CFP: Pragmatism, Wittgenstein, and the Virtues: Three Heterodox Approaches to Ethics


School of Philosophy, University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland.

14-15 September 2015

The conference explores the historical and theoretical dialogues between pragmatist ethics, Wittgensteinian moral philosophy, and virtue ethics. Charting different philosophical programs, these three heterodox approaches to ethics offer metaphilosophical alternatives to both the disengaged project of meta-ethics and to the prescriptive project of normative ethics. As against the meta-ethical aspect of moral theory, they question the independence of second-order ethical analysis from first order moral inquiry, while contrary to the prescriptive aspect they recommend a descriptive investigation of moral normativity. The conference surveys the convergences and  divergences of  these traditions as they have shaped the course of the twentieth (and now twenty-first) century debates about the goals, methods, and limits of moral philosophy.

We invite submissions of short (20-5 min) papers on any issue falling within the conference topic. Keynote speakers will be David Backhurst (Queens’s University at Kingston), Alice Crary (New School for Social Research), Piergiorgio Donatelli (Sapienza Università di Roma), and Sandra Laugier (Paris 1, Sorbonne).

Please submit a 250 word abstract by August 31 to

Accepted papers will be acknowledged by Sept 1.