We are committed to philosophy that is engaged with moral and political life, developing new ways to think about pressing concerns on personal, social and global scales. UEA philosophers have made contributions to key debates in environmental philosophy and animal ethics, methods in moral philosophy, and the historical and political contexts of moral and social thought.
Environmental Philosophy and Animal Ethics
Addressing the most important and difficult concerns of our age, environmental philosophy is emerging as a major focus of philosophical work that draws upon on an array of methods, traditions and interdisciplinary expertise. How can we integrate ecological values into ethics, politics and aesthetics? How should we relate to non-human animals? Is a truly ecological economics possible? And how should we rethink human life and civilisation in the light of global ecological breakdown? To address questions such as these we are currently co-ordinating an AHRC Research Network on ‘Debating nature’s value’.
T. Greaves and R. Read (2015): Where Value Resides: Making Ecological Value Possible. Environmental Ethics, 37:3.
T. Greaves (2016): Natural Phenomena: The Birth and Growth of Experience. In Bryan Bannon (ed.) Nature and Experience: Phenomenology and the Environment, Rowman & Littlefield International.
R. Read (2015): Green Economics versus Growth Economics. Radical Philosophy, 189 Jan/Feb.
G. Francione (2008): Animals as Persons. Columbia University Press.
C. Osborne (2007): Dumb beasts and dead philosophers: humanity and the humane in ancient philosophy and literature. Oxford University Press.
Methods in Moral Philosophy
Challenging the traditional separation of meta-ethics, normative theories and applied philosophy, UEA philosophers have been at the forefront of developments that integrate reflection on method with engaged philosophy. Does the ambition to develop a universal normative theory mislead us about the role that such theories can play in clarifying the concept of goodness? Are there moral experts and do moral philosophers have reliable moral intuitions?
J. Andow (2017): Are Intuitions About Moral Relevance Susceptible to Framing Effects? Review of Philosophy and Psychology.
C. Rowett (2015): Factual Mistakes, epistemological virtues and moral errors: a study in Augustine’s Confessions, in Sophie Grace Chappell (ed.) Intuition, theory and anti-theory in ethics
O. Kuusela (in Press): 'Wittgenstein and the Unity of Good'. In Nino Rosania, Freddy Santamaria and Karen Cardenas (eds.) Perspectivas Wittgensteinianas. Mexico: Benemerita Universidad de Puebla and Universidad de Valle.
Historical and Political Contexts
Innovative approaches to moral and political philosophy often emerge from dialogue with historical thinkers in the light of contemporary concerns. Can and should normative and ethical principles guide political institutions? How should we understand the relationship between philosophical theory, concrete political projects and social practices? We address these questions in the light of ancient philosophy, Wittgenstein and contemporary political theory.
C. Rowett (2016): Why the Philosopher Kings will believe the Noble Lie. In Victor Caston ed. Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
O. Kuusela and B. de Mesel (eds) (forthcoming): Ethics in the Wake of Wittgenstein. Routledge.
J. Prinz and E. Rossi (2017): Political realism as ideology critique. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, 20:3, 348-365.