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Philosophy and Literature

The Focal Group in Philosophy and Literature brings together scholars and students from eight departments to investigate questions in aesthetics and literary theory, philosophically-inflected literary texts, and the form of philosophical writings. It offers undergraduate major tracks within nine programs, a graduate workshop, and a lecture series.

Schedule of events, AY 2013-2014


Wednesday November 6, 4:30-6:00 pm

Stacie Friend (Philosophy, Heythrop College, UK): Title TBA
Building 260, room 216


Wednesday December 4

Garry Hagberg (Bard): "Wittgenstein Re-reading"
Building 100, Room 101K


Wednesday February 19, 2014, 5:15-7:00 pm

Toril Moi (Comparative Literature, Duke)


Thursday February 20, 2014, 12:00-1:00 pm

Discussion with Toril Moi of her paper,

“‘They practice their trades in different worlds’: 
Concepts in Poststructuralism and Ordinary 
Language Philosophy.”

This paper is available here; please read ahead of the discussion.

Building 260, room 216


Saturday March 1 - Sunday March 2

Science of Story and Imagination:

Perspectives from Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, and the Humanities

Levinthal Hall, Stanford Humanities Center 

Saturday March 1, 10-11am: Introduction 

Frederick Aldama (English, Ohio State)
Alison Gopnik (Psychology, UC Berkeley)
Joshua Landy (French, Stanford University)

Saturday March 1, 11:15am-1:15pm: Development of the Imagination 

Paul Harris (GSE, Harvard University) 
Deena Skolnick Weisberg (Psychology, University of Pennsylvania)
Marjorie Taylor (Psychology, University of Oregon)

Saturday March 1, 3-5pm: Imagination, Possibility, and Fiction 

Raymond Mar (Psychology, York University)
Tamar Gendler (Philosophy, Yale University) 
Uri Hasson (Psychology, Princeton University)

Sunday March 2, 10am-12 noon: Fictional Objects 

Patrick Colm Hogan (English, University of Connecticut)
Blakey Vermeule (English, Stanford University)
Lisa Zunshine (English, University of Kentucky) 

Sunday March 2, 12:15-1:15pm: Concluding Discussion (All participants)

Cosponsored by the Stanford Humanities Center, 
the Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Institute, 
UC Berkeley Psychology, and OSU English.

Wednesday April 16, 2014

Author Meets Critics: 

Robert Pippin (Committee on Social Thought, Chicago)
After the Beautiful: Hegel and the Philosophy of Visual Modernism
Further details to be announced.


Please visit the Philosophy and Literature Initiative's website:

For our archive of video recorded events: