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Seventh Annual Felician Ethics Conference


If you’re in the Rutherford, NJ area this Saturday, and have a yen to do (or hear) some moral philosophy, feel free to swing by the Seventh Annual Felician Ethics Conference at Felician’s Rutherford campus (223 Montross Ave., Rutherford NJ, 07070). It’s the fifth of these Felician Ethics Conferences I’ve organized, the sixth I’ve attended, and of course, the seventh that the College’s Philosophy Department has put on.

We’re running 23 top-notch papers in two sets of morning sessions, a plenary, and an afternoon session. The mid-afternoon plenary lecture, by Robert Audi of the University of Notre Dame, is a bit of a mouthful: “Intuitive Moral Judgment and Axiological Plurality: Can the New Intuitionism Solve the Problem of Incommensurable Values?” (I think Professor Audi can be counted on to give that question a straight answer. And I think I know what it is.) There’s a $20 cover charge, $10 for adjuncts and graduate students. If you drive in, Felician Security is asking that you park in Lot D on Montross Ave, just across the street from Martin Hall (the colonial building with the clocktower).

Martin Hall, home of the Felician Ethics Conference on Felician's Rutherford NJ campus.

Martin Hall, home of the Felician Ethics Conference on Felician’s Rutherford NJ campus.

Carrie-Ann is chairing a mid-morning session on “Aristotelian Ethics,” and I’m chairing one on “Ethics, Measurement, and Measurability.” There’s a session on libertarian politics, with papers on Nozick and Tomasi (and Rawls), one on business ethics, one on abortion, and much more. I’ll give a run-down here of the sessions I chaired and ended up going to, and offer some comments on philosophy conferences generally, comparing and contrasting mainstream conferences like this one to Objectivist academic events (e.g., meetings of the Ayn Rand Society at the APA, workshops sponsored by the Anthem Foundation, etc.)

A Felician colleague told me the other day at lunch that he could see that I now had my “conference face on.” Unsure of what that meant, or whether it was a good thing, I asked Carrie-Ann if she thought it was true. “Oh, it definitely is,” she said. “So how do I look?” I asked. “Harried and bewildered,” was the response. A man should count himself fortunate to be able to rely on such candor.



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