Intellectual History and Modernity - 'Philosophy and/or Science: the Physics in Metaphysics and the Metaphysics in Physics' Associate Professor Phil Dowe (HPRC)
Thursday August 30, 4.00 – 5.30pm
CCCS Seminar Room
Level 4, Forgan Smith Building
Is there any place today for the intellectual project of metaphysics? Philosophers from Hume to Derrida have ostensibly thought not. According to the positivist critique, if it is to say what there is and what is its nature, metaphysics either treads on the toes of empirical science, say, physics and hence is redundant, or it is non-verifiable and hence meaningless. On the other hand, post-positivist critiques of science have focused attention on the non-empirical elements in physics, so even if one rejects the positivist identification of meaning and verifiability, a non-redundant role for metaphysics is by no means secured. I defend the role of metaphysics with reference to theories of time, and in particular to the metaphysics of eternal return.
Phil Dowe works on philosophy of science and metaphysics, and has a significant international reputation for his work on causation. He has published in many of the world's top philosophy journals and has published books with Cambridge University Press, Routledge and Edinburgh University Press. He has often been invited to give keynotes at international conferences, for example at Waterloo Canada, Nottingham in the UK, Ghent in Belgium, Grenoble in France, Barcelona in Spain, Lake Tegernsee and Konstance in Germany, and Pittsburgh in USA. His work has been translated into Spanish, French, and Italian.
Centre for the History of European Discourses