Celebrating Philosophy at Kent (1965-2024)

Celebrating Philosophy at Kent (1965-2024)

14 June 2024, Grimond Lecture Theatre 3, University of Kent, and online.

Philosophy has been at the heart of the University of Kent since its foundation in 1965. It has contributed greatly to the original mission of interdisciplinarity and close links with the local communities and wider society, including through two Philosophy centres, the Centre for Practical Normativity and the Centre for Reasoning.

Following the University decision to close down Philosophy, this conference will mark the occasion by celebrating the department’s achievements and will offer a space for reflection on the significance of philosophy for higher education, local communities and wider society.

The conference talks will address one or more of the following themes:

  • the importance of philosophy to higher education;
  • the role of philosophy within local communities and wider society, and;
  • specific contributions of Philosophy at Kent.
  • The conference will implement fully the BPA/SWIP Good Practice Scheme including Guidance on Accessible Events.

    How to register

    Registration is free and everyone is welcome.

    Limited bursaries to support student attendance are available. If you would like to be considered for a conference bursary, please indicate this when registering.

    If you would like to attend in person, please contact Alexandra Trofimov by 13th May, so that we can get a firm idea of numbers for catering purposes. Please include any dietary or accessibility requirements you may have.

    If you would like to attend online, please contact Alexandra Trofimov who can provide a Teams link.


    The conference is made possible by the generous support of the Society for Applied Philosophy and the Mind Association.


    09.00 coffee

    09.10 Welcome. David Corfield, Head of Philosophy at Kent

    09.20 Richard Norman: Engaged Philosophy: “Sex, Madness, and the Absurd”
    09.45 Sean Sayers (online): My time in philosophy at the University of Kent
    10.10 Larry Chase (online): The Canterbury Tails
    10.35 Simon Glendinning (LSE): Kentish Turns

    11.00 coffee

    11.20 Edward Harcourt (Oxford): The Kent School of Philosophy
    11.45 Julia Tanney: Understanding Religious Practices: with help from Wittgenstein
    12.10 Phyllis Illari (UCL) & Federica Russo (Utrecht, online): Causal Reasoning
    12.35 Jason Konek (Bristol): Deliberation and Control

    13.00 lunch

    14.00 Simon Kirchin (Leeds): Philosophy’s place in a University
    14.25 Graeme Forbes: Time and Opportunity
    14.50 Todd Mei (online): Hermeneutics and AI

    15.15 coffee

    15.35 Camillia Kong (Queen Mary): Enriching Interdisciplinarity through Philosophy
    16.00 Tom Angier (Cape Town, online): Two threats to Philosophy: Bifurcation and Balkanisation
    16.25 George Darby (Oxford Brookes): Cutting off your nose to spite your face
    16.50 Lubomira Radoilska: Philosophy as Co-Creation

    17.15 reception