I would like to announce the publication of my book, Democracy and Disenfranchisement: The Morality of Electoral Exclusions. It is available at Amazon and Oxford UP. Below is the jacket description, advanced praise, and table of contents.
The denial of voting rights to certain types of persons continues to be a moral problem of practical significance. The disenfranchisement of persons with mental impairments, minors, noncitizen residents, nonresident citizens, and criminal offenders is a matter of controversy in many countries. How should we think morally about electoral exclusions? What should we conclude about these particular cases? This book proposes a set of principles, called the Critical Suffrage Doctrine, that defies conventional beliefs on the legitimate denial of the franchise. According to the Critical Suffrage Doctrine, in some realistic circumstances it is morally acceptable to adopt an alternative to universal suffrage that would exclude the vast majority of sane adults for being largely uninformed. Thus, contrary to what most people believe, current controversies on the franchise are not about exploring the limits of a basic moral right. Regarding such controversies, the Critical Suffrage Doctrine establishes that, in polities with universal suffrage, the blanket disenfranchisement of minors and the mentally impaired cannot be justified; that noncitizen residents should be allowed to vote; that excluding nonresident citizens is permissible; and that criminal offenders should not be disenfranchised-although facilitating voting from prison is not required in all contexts. Political theorists have rarely submitted the franchise to serious scrutiny. Hence this study makes a contribution to a largely neglected and important subject.
Workshop on “The Idea of Social Equality”, King’s Manor, University of York, 17-18 September 2014
The first of four workshops on Social Equality, sponsored by the British Academy and Leverhulme Trust, in association with the Department of Politics at the University of York
Convened by Martin O’Neill (York), Emily McTernan (UCL), Christian Schemmel (Manchester) and Fabian Schuppert (QUB)
Sara Amighetti (University College London)
Christopher Brooke (University of Cambridge)
Carina Fourie (University of Zürich)
Cillian McBride (Queen’s University Belfast)
Frederick Neuhouser (Barnard College, Columbia University)
Fabian Schuppert (Queen’s University Belfast)
Call for papers
Conference on “Compromise and Disagreement”
27-29 May, 2015
Department of Political Science
University of Copenhagen, Denmark
Eric Beerbohm (Harvard)
Richard Bellamy (UCL)
Michael Freeden (Nottingham)
Alin Fumurescu (Yale)
Lea Ypi (LSE)
Modern society is characterised by disagreement and pluralism, and it is largely this fact that makes politics necessary. In the contemporary world, political institutions and laws must coordinate the actions of millions of people who disagree at many different levels. Liberal theory has traditionally focused on disagreement between different conceptions of the good and more recently on disagreement about justice. But disagreement might also concern facts: Is global warming caused by human activity? Or the means: Which institutions best secure freedom of religion? What are the best means for protecting the climate? And when we agree on fundamental issues, e.g. human rights or protecting the climate, we often disagree on which institutions at the national and international level ought to promote them: How should the three branches of government relate to each other? Which role should international or global institutions play? Thus, a political theory that aims to be realistic in terms of beginning from the fact of disagreement cannot merely see disagreement as a result of human self-interest, nor should it see disagreement merely as a matter of disagreement on ends or justice. Citizens disagree in good faith at many different levels – and so do political theorists and philosophers.
On Tuesday, London news outlet ‘Ham & High’ reported the heart-warming tale of ‘world renowned philosopher from Primrose Hill’ Jonathan Glover, and his triumph over would-be fraudster Nishathur Chowdhury, of the Salvation Army Hostel, Great Peter Street, Victoria (see http://www.hamhigh.co.uk/news/court-crime/courier_fraudster_foiled_by_world_renowned_philosopher_from_primrose_hill_1_3732577). The distinguished academic apparently put his refined analytical skills to work in order to outwit the 28 year-old homeless man, who had attempted to obtain the philosopher’s bank card details through an elaborate phone hoax (‘the dialling tone… didn’t sound absolutely normal’, Glover reports, with characteristic brilliance). Using only his native cunning and the co-operation of the Metropolitan Police, Glover laid a trap for the unsuspecting swindler.
A Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship (SKO 1352) is vacant at the Department of Philosophy, Classics, History of Art and Ideas at the University of Oslo (UiO).
The post is available for a period of three years, preferably starting in the autumn of 2014. The main purpose of post-doctoral research fellowships is to qualify researchers for work in higher academic positions within their disciplines.
Preference may be given to applicants working in areas in which the Department has particular research strengths, including the History of Philosophy (especially Ancient and Early Modern), the areas associated with the Centre for the Study of Mind in Nature (CSMN), and the Philosophies of Logic and Mathematics.
Workshop, Paris, 20-21 November 2014.
Keynote speakers: Simone Chambers and Jürg Steiner.
We invite paper proposals on four topics:
1. What is the role of consensus in deliberative democratic theory?
2. How does agreement affect the quality of subsequent deliberation?
3. How to measure deliberative rationality and epistemic quality?
4. What is the relationship between expert discourse, democratic deliberation and epistemic quality in political processes?
Paper proposal deadline: September 1, 2014.
Where required, we’ll cover travel and accommodation expenses for paper givers.
Further info is to be found here: