Justifying Just War Theory

At this week’s meeting, the last of the semester, Steven Starke will deliver a paper entitled “Justifying Just War Theory.”

Summary: Using an Aristotelian square of opposition, I investigate the plausibility of the application of just war theory. Using some classics of just war literature, I begin by considering the realist argument that there is no connection between justice and war. Then I look at the pacifist notion that no wars are just. Finally, I deal with the relativist position that all wars are just. I am left to conclude that, by process of elimination, there is some relationship between justice and war, all that remains is to specify the criteria for it, i.e. just war theory.

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CFP for Eastern Michigan’s Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

Here is a call for papers for Eastern Michigan University’s 5th Annual Undergraduate Conference in Philosophy.

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FPA at USF

USF will host the Florida Philosophical Association’s annual conference on November 14th and 15th. All sessions will be held in C. W. Young Hall. The program is here. Undergraduates can attend the conference for free.

Since one of Friday’s sessions is from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., Philosophy Organization’s weekly meeting will start a bit later — around 5:50 p.m. — so that people have time to attend that session if they wish.

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Last Two Meetings

The schedule has been updated with details about the last two meetings of the semester.

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Halloween Party

This Friday in MSC 3708 at 5:30 p.m. we will have our first ever Halloween party! There will be food and a costume contest complete with a prize if more than a few people dress as their favorite philosopher.

My intention is for this week’s meeting to be pretty informal, but if people want a more structured discussion we can discuss the philosophy of horror (there’s a short survey article on the subject here if you’re interested).

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Updates and CFPs

The schedule has been updated with information about our next few meetings.

Here are the calls for papers for three conferences that are accepting submissions from undergraduates:

Delimiting Limits: 8th Annual University of South Florida Graduate Student Conference
Midsouth Undergraduate Philosophy Conference
Pacific University’s Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

See here for a list of additional undergraduate philosophy conferences.

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Recommended Readings on the Frankfurt School and Pop Culture

At our meeting on October 10th we will discuss the Frankfurt School’s critique of pop culture. Here are some recommended readings if you’re unfamiliar with the subject.

Introductory overviews
Stephen Eric Bronner, “The happy consciousness” from Critical Theory: A Very Short Introduction
Alex Ross, “The Naysayers” from The New Yorker

Primary sources
Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction
Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno, “The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception” from Dialectic of Enlightenment
Theodor Adorno, “Culture Industry Reconsidered

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Coming Attractions

Here’s what we’ll discuss at the next three meetings.

On September 26th we’ll discuss William Lane Craig’s short article “Does God Exist?,” which outlines eight arguments for the existence of God.

On October 3rd we will discuss Ingmar Bergman’s film Wild Strawberries (Smultronst√§llet). Please watch the film before the meeting if you haven’t already seen it.

And on October 10th we will discuss the Frankfurt School’s critique of pop culture. For an accessible overview, see Alex Ross’s recent article in The New Yorker, “The Naysayers.” For additional reading you might like to consult Benjamin’s “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,” Horkheimer and Adorno’s “The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception,” and Adorno’s “Culture Industry Reconsidered.”

Finally, don’t forget to fill out our survey so that future meetings can better cater to your interests.

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Survey

Please fill out this short survey so that we can get a better idea about what our members’ interests and backgrounds are.

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Fall Meetings

The first meeting of the fall 2014 semester will be held on September 5th at 5:30 p.m. in MSC 3713. The schedule of topics at each meeting will be updated throughout the semester.

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