Harvey Lederman of Princeton University gives a talk on “Trying” as a guest lecturer in philosophy

The Department of Philosophy is pleased to announce a lecture by Professor Harvey Lederman of Princeton University, who has published extensively on topics of epistemology, logic, decision theory, game theory, of ancient Greek philosophy and classical Chinese philosophy.

The conference, titled “Try it”, will take place at 4 pm on Friday 8 October at the Giffels Auditorium (MAIN 201). The conference will be based on Lederman’s joint work with Ben Holguín (Princeton / JHU).

“Compared to the vast literature devoted to intention and intentional action, the notion of trying has inspired relatively little discussion,” Lederman said. “But (we argue) trying is distinct from these notions and indeed cannot be clearly defined from combinations of desire, belief, intention, or intentional action.”

“Plus, trying can make a normative difference in the ethical review of actions that goes beyond the contributions of these other notions,” Lederman added. “And finally, trying can be used to articulate an important notion that something is under a person’s control; it itself has the right to be under its control in that important sense; and it can enable us to recover a seed of truth in the sacred but the controversial idea that one can know what one is doing immediately and without observation. “

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