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Department Colloquia

Colloquium: Kristen Andrews


Are adult humans the only normative creatures? Recent research by development psychologists and animal behaviorists has begun to challenge the idea that adult humans are the only normative folk; children countenance specific cooperative norms (Hamlin et al. 2007), and some nonhuman animals act consistently with some of the moral foundations found across human cultures (Vincent et al. 2018). Such findings feed the current interest in examining the evolution of morality.

Colloquium: Dominic Lopes

Abstract: Aesthetic values appear to be located in objects, for we see the grace of a dancer’s step and hear the jauntiness of a guitar riff. Indeed, we understand perfectly well how to manipulate an item’s aesthetic value by manipulating its other features. Yet, at the same time, we want to say that aesthetic values are subjective, constituted by our responses. In this talk, Lopes reorients the dialectic by explaining how aesthetic values are natural properties.

Colloquium: Japa Pallikkathayil

Abstract: The way in which consent to sexual interactions is understood in the United States is undergoing a transformation. Many universities, sometimes at the behest of lawmakers, are moving to adopt ‘affirmative consent’ policies. These policies define affirmative consent in terms of affirmative behavior that goes beyond mere silence or lack of resistance.  Although the affirmative consent movement is associated with the slogan ‘yes means yes’, affirmative consent policies tend not to require verbal agreement.