Call for papers on 'Aesthetics, Normativity and Reasons'

6 March 2015

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Dr Simon Kirchin, Reader in the Department of Philosophy and Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, in conjunction with colleagues from the School of Arts, has won a research grant from the British Society for Aesthetics for Kent to host an international conference entitled 'Aesthetics, Normativity and Reasons'. The conference will be held 26-27 June 2015.

Over the last few years a great deal of attention has been paid to the idea of normativity, both in general and in a number of areas of philosophy, principally ethics and epistemology.  What should we do, morally, and what should we believe?  What, if anything, is the central or foundational normative concept?  How does normativity relate to evaluation?

There is currently a growing interest in aesthetic normativity.  Similarly we can ask what it is to act for aesthetic reasons and what the relation is between such reasons and aesthetic value.  We can also look to thinkers in the past to see – and recall – what they said about these questions.  Lastly, by thinking about aesthetics we can reflect on normativity in general.  Perhaps a renewed focus on aesthetics will enable us to reconceptualise what normativity is.

The purpose of the conference is to bring speakers together who between them have a range of philosophical interests so as to explore the questions above and raise new ones.

There will be a number of open sessions, and so you are invited to submit extended abstracts (1,000 words including all headings, footnotes and references) on anything that comes under the broad heading of the conference. Proposed papers should be suitable for 40-minute sessions. To submit, please remove any identifying information from the abstract to allow for anonymous review; any identifying details should be included in a covering email.

Please submit an abstract attached to an email (Word or PDF) to

The submission deadline is 3 April 2015.

For full details of the conference, including details of its keynote speakers, please see the dedicated conference website here:

Philosophy, School of European Culture and Languages, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NF

Enquiries: +44 (0)1227 827159 or email Philosophy

Last Updated: 24/01/2014