Winter 2014 Newsletter

From the Chair I just finished teaching PHIL100, "Introduction to Philosophy," and this quarter, like every time I teach the course, I am reminded of the impact that philosophy can make on students' lives. The comments that I most enjoy in the end of course evaluations are those that say things like "I never would have thought that philosophy could be interesting but…" or "this course really stretched my mind." We often take it for granted that philosophy is important and stimulating, but these… Read more
Interview with Graduate Student: Andrea Sullivan-Clarke Andrea Sullivan-Clarke, a member of the Muskogee Nation of Oklahoma, moved to Seattle in 2005, with her family of four children (age 5 to 13) in tow, to pursue a Ph.D. in UW's philosophy graduate program. She will defend her dissertation, Analogical Reasoning and Scientific Practice: The Problem of Ingrained Analogy, this spring/summer. She took time out of her extremely busy schedule to talk to us about her studies in philosophy… Read more
Interning at the UW Press Elizabeth Scarbrough Since 1999, the University of Washington Press has introduced graduate students in the humanities to the world of scholarly publishing through a graduate internship, now supported by the Soden-Trueblood Graduate Publishing Endowment. Graduate student, Elizabeth Scarbrough was chosen as the Publishing Fellow for the 2013-2014 academic year, and is the first fellow to come from the philosophy department. Here is what she has to say about her… Read more
The First Washington State High School Ethics Bowl The first Washington State High School Ethics Bowl was a great success! It was held on Saturday, February 1, 2014, on the UW campus here in Savery Hall. The event was hosted by the UW Center for Philosophy for Children and involved 22 teams from 13 high schools and an array of lawyers, judges, philosophers, business people and others that volunteered their time to serve as judges and moderators. Congratulations go to Seattle Academy for coming… Read more
Remembering Shawn Mintek Shawn Mintek, PhD '77, passed away at home on September 23, 2013, at age 64 from aggressive prostate cancer. After earning his doctorate from the University of Washington's Philosophy Department, Shawn began a 27-year career as a teacher at Seattle's Franklin High School. From 1986 to 2013, he taught Senior Humanities and Math to hundreds of students. By all accounts, he was an amazing teacher, who inspired many of his students to continue to pursue the study of… Read more
Professor Carole Lee Wins COST Grant Carole Lee, as a secondary proposer, has just been funded by the European Cooperation in Science and Technology agency for a four-year COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) grant. She will be working with an interdisciplinary and international group of researchers to explore questions about the future of peer review and publication. Carole, and the rest of the research group will explore answers to questions like: Are new models of… Read more
Congratulations to Sophomore Jeffrey Lee of Kent, WA, who was named freshman Presidential Medalist (most outstanding student in his class) for the 2012-13 academic year. Jeffrey is majoring in philosophy and neurobiology and sees medical school in his future. He is specifically interested in learning about the brain to better "appreciate how this measly 3-pound hunk of tissue wedged between our ears has so much capacity for curiosity and innovation." Jeffrey currently volunteers at the Child… Read more
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Graduate Student Conference The biennial Philosophy Graduate Student Conference: Stances, Relations and Value, was held on January 10th and 11th. Former UW professor Angela Smith delivered the Saturday keynote address "Implicit Attitudes, Moral Agency, and Moral Responsibility." Friday afternoon, Kristen Intemann, UW PhD '04, Montana State University, delivered the keynote address "Values and Uncertainties in Climate Change Research: Who Needs Consensus Anyway?" Graduate students from… Read more
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CENTER FOR PHILOSOPHY FOR CHILDREN Washington State High School Ethics Bowl, which was sponsored by the UW Philosophy Department, Program on Values in Society, School of Law, and the College of Arts & Sciences Social Sciences Division, as well as several law firms. An Ethics Bowl is a collaborative yet competitive event, in which teams analyze a series of wide-ranging ethical dilemmas, deepening the awareness of high school students about interesting ethical, legal and philosophical issues… Read more
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DEPARTMENT ADVISORY BOARD The department's Advisory Board advises the department chair, supports the department's community and public relations activities, and assists in implementing the department's fund development and outreach efforts. Advisory Board members are: David Byrne, Meaghen Friel, Dan Gerler, Jana Mohr Lone, Ann Owens, Jack Sabin and Jasmin Weaver. The board meets five times a year and is involved in various fundraising and outreach initiatives. If you are interested in being… Read more
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The Benjamin Rabinowitz Lecture in Medical Ethics "It's a Boy! The Ethics of Sex Selection" will be held May 28th at 7 pm in Kane Hall 220 with a reception following in the Walker-Ames Room. Is it ethically permissible to select embryos of a particular sex for social reasons? Dr. Inmaculada de Melo-Martín Professor of Medical Ethics Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University, will speak on the use of new reproductive and genetic technologies presenting us with difficult ethical choices.