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Alan Thomas: Williams's Political Psychology:

Between Realism and Moralism?

CANCELLED due to illness

Lecture by Alan Thomas (Tilburg University), organized by the Department of Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy

In his later work Bernard Williams was, famously, a politically realist critic of liberal moralism in political philosophy. This paper asks how this position is to be reconciled with a different line of argument in Truth and Truthfulness that begins from claims about the politics of knowledge and seems to make a prima facie case for a liberal political psychology. Is there an irreconcilable tension here or can Williams consistently be a realist about legitimacy while independently making the case for the inescapability of liberalism "for us"


Alan Thomas is Professor of Ethics at Tilburg University. His research areas include moral, social and political philosophy, and the problem of consciousness. He was previously senior lecturer and head of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Kent, a Visiting Research Scholar at the University of British Columbia, and a Visiting Research Professor at the Murphy Institute, Tulane University.

When & where?

Wednesday 4 June, 15.15-17.00
Faculty of Philosophy, Room Omega

Last modified:03 June 2014 11.17 a.m.