Centre's 4th Annual Conference 2016 'Cultivating Virtues': Open Call for Papers 5th June 2015 Academic Conference


 Cultivating Virtues: Interdisciplinary Approaches

Oriel College, Oxford, January 7–9, 2016

The annual conference of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, University of Birmingham 

Open Call for Papers

Please submit an abstract of around 500 words to (marked ORIEL PROPOSAL in the subject line) before July 1, 2015.

After a successful annual conference of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues in January 2015 on ‘Varieties of Virtue Ethics’, we return to Oriel College, Oxford, for the Centre’s fourth annual conference in January 2016 on the theme:

Cultivating Virtues: Interdisciplinary Approaches
In virtue ethics, in particular of the Aristotelian kind, virtue cultivation is not an extraneous addition to an understanding of morality or the study of moral philosophy; it is, rather, what such understanding and study are all about. We progress towards moral excellence only if we are educated from an early age – indeed from birth – to do so. A study of morality would thus, by Aristotle’s lights, be an entirely fruitless enterprise if it did not gauge the educational implications of its findings.
Contemporary moral philosophy is commonly lambasted – by moral psychologists for example – for its lack of attention to developmental issues and its almost complete neglect of childhood. Aristotle’s stance is so radically different here that he could almost be accused of the opposite error: of reducing moral philosophy to character education. For him, it is more precious to know how virtue arises than to know what it is. More specifically, regarding moral inquiry as such, its purpose ‘is not to know what virtue is, but to become good, since otherwise the inquiry would be of no benefit to us’ (NE, 1103b27–29]). It is difficult to think of a more suitable platform from which to launch programmes of virtue-and-character education.
Yet various thorny problems remain about the nature and execution of education in virtue. As Aristotle offers no detailed account of the nuts and bolts of such education, virtue ethicists and character educationists need to engage in some serious reconstructive work – if not simply leaving Aristotle behind and making a fresh start.
The aim of the 2016 Jubilee Centre conference is to bring together experts from a range of disciplines to explore the nuances of virtue cultivation, both within and across disciplinary boundaries. Can theorists from philosophy, education and developmental psychology here learn from each other’s work?
We hereby send out an open call for presentations falling under the broad theme of ‘cultivating virtues’. Although the remit of this conference is more distinctly educational than in our two last conferences, we will also look favourably upon proposals that explore virtue concepts or individual virtues from a philosophical/theoretical perspective, as long as those proposals also pay some attention to developmental issues.
We ask interested parties to send us an abstract of around 500 words to (marked ORIEL PROPOSAL in the subject line) before July 1, 2015. We will send out notifications of acceptance before the end of July. 
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