FC Talks

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Liz Levinson (University of Arizona).

Abstract:
This paper argues that even in the absence of injustice, the value of self-determination can ground a qualified right to secede for a certain kind of political minority group– namely, those that are made distinctly worse-off by their minority status, because it comes to a significant cost to their ability to be self-determining. For these “persistent political minority” groups, as I refer to them, political independence would be self-determination enhancing, which means that they would benefit from the substantial gain in control over the direction of the political collective that secession engenders, even though they lose access to the greater institutional capacity of a larger, more established state in the process.

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

When

12:30 p.m. March 31, 2022

Where

Social Sciences 128

Event Contacts

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Wednesday, March 30, 2022 - 13:03

An Ideological Explanation of How Revolutions Occur and Why They Result in New Oppressive Orders

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Allen Buchanan (University of Arizona) and Alex Motchoulski (University of Arizona).

Abstract:
Revolutionaries must solve a cooperation problem and a coordination problem. We argue that, under the conditions in which revolutions are now likely to occur, aspiring revolutionary leaders are better able to solve the cooperation and the coordination problems when they cultivate and exploit a certain kind of ideology, one that (1) presents the revolutionary struggle in Manichean terms, (2) confers extreme deference on those it identifies as the leaders of the revolution, and (3) includes a belief in the ubiquity of counter-revolutionary conspiracies that helps sustain participation in the face of apparent failures of leadership or other setbacks to the revolution. We then argue that this kind of revolutionary ideology empowers the revolutionary leadership to create a post-revolutionary regime that is oppressive. Lastly, we develop normative conclusions concerning the ethics of revolution and intervention in revolution, grounded in this explanatory framework.

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

When

12:30 p.m. to 1:40 p.m. March 17, 2022

Where

Social Sciences 128

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Tuesday, March 29, 2022 - 09:40

How to Respond Better to the Next Pandemic

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Allen Buchanan (University of Arizona).

Allen Buchanan was invited to speak at The Tanner Lectures on Human Values 2022: Providing for a nation’s health, in a global context at Cambridge University, Clare Hall. He will give a recap of his lecture on the relationship between national and global health.

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

The Tanner Lectures on Human Values were established by the American scholar, industrialist and philanthropist, Obert Clark Tanner in 1978.  The purpose of the lectures is to advance and reflect upon the scholarly and scientific learning related to human values.

In creating the lectureships, Professor Tanner said, “I hope these lectures will contribute to the intellectual and moral life of mankind. I see them simply as a search for a better understanding of human behavior and human values. This understanding may be pursued for its own intrinsic worth, but it may also eventually have practical consequences for the quality of personal and social life".

Appointment as a Tanner Lecturer is a recognition of uncommon achievement and outstanding abilities in the domain of human values. The lectureships are international and intercultural and transcend ethnic, national, religious and ideological distinctions.

When

12:30 p.m. April 7, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Thursday, March 17, 2022 - 16:06

Meritocracy, mobility, and the curse of privilege

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Anna Gunnthorsdottir (University of Arizona).

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
We develop a game-theoretic model of a merit-based socially mobile society. We show that such a society is very productive with a highly efficient equilibrium. We then extend the model by adding an exogenously determined privileged class that can avoid merit-based social mobility.

The addition of this privileged class reduces the society’s productivity and efficiency.

We test the equilibrium predictions for both “societies” in the laboratory. The game has two equilibria that differ in efficiency. The payoff dominant equilibrium is asymmetric and not easy to find. Yet, aggregates of naïve subjects tacitly coordinate this complex equilibrium near-instantaneously, precisely, and reliably.  While aggregate behavior can thus be predicted with great accuracy individuals change their strategies erratically over repeated play so that individual behavior is unpredictable. We discuss the policy implications of a merit-based society, the perceived fairness of meritocracy, the perceived freedom of choice in this game, and how incentives could be re-structed so that those with greater resources contribute their fair share to society.

When

12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. Feb. 24, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Tuesday, March 8, 2022 - 09:46

Ideology Critique Without Morality: A Radical Realist Approach

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Enzo Rossi (University of Amsterdam).

Enzo Rossi is a tenured universitair docent at the University of Amsterdam, the co-editor of the European Journal of Political Theory, and the principal investigator of the Dutch National Science Organisation Vidi project 'Legitimacy Beyond Consent' (2016-2021). His PhD is in philosophy, from the University of St Andrews.

His main current project is a realist critical theory of legitimacy. This stems from the intersection of a number of interests: (i) methodological issues in political theory, e.g. realism vs moralism and, relatedly but separately, ideal vs non-ideal theory; (ii) the historical development of liberal ideology; (iii) the normative status of political authority; and (iv) the accommodation of diversity. More generally, he is concerned with the relationship between the descriptive and the normative study of society. His publications and working papers can be downloaded here.

 

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
What is the point of ideology critique? Prominent Anglo-American philosophers recently proposed novel arguments for the view that ideology critique is moral critique, and ideologies are flawed insofar as they contribute to injustice or oppression. We criticize that view and make the case for an alternative and more empirically-oriented approach, grounded in epistemic rather than moral commitments. We make two related claims: (i) ideology critique can debunk beliefs and practices by uncovering how, empirically, they are produced by self-justifying power, and (ii) the self-justification of power should be understood as an epistemic rather than moral flaw. Drawing on the recent realist revival in political theory, we argue that this genealogical approach has more radical potential, despite being more parsimonious than morality-based approaches. We demonstrate the relative advantages of our view by discussing the results of empirical studies on the contemporary phenomenon of neopatriarchy in the Middle East and North Africa.  

When

12:30 p.m. April 14, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 - 15:43

The Primacy of Property; Or, The Subordination of Property Rights

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Bart Wilson (Chapman University).

Bart is a Professor of Economics and Law and the Donald P. Kennedy Endowed Chair in Economics and Law at Chapman University. He is a member of the Economic Science Institute and tenured in the Argyros School of Business and Economics and the Fowler School of Law. In Fall 2016, he co-founded with Jan Osborn (English), Vernon Smith (Economics and Law), and Keith Hankins (Philosophy) the Smith Institute for Political Economy and Philosophy, for which he serves as the director. Bart has published papers widely in economics and general science journals, including the American Economic Review, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Scientific Reports, and Nature Human Behaviour. Bart was a Ph.D. student of Vernon's at the University of Arizona and has been a faculty member with Vernon for nearly his entire career. They have a recent book Humanomics: Moral Sentiments and the Wealth of Nations for the Twenty-First Century.

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
A property right, the standard view maintains, is a proper subset of the most complete and comprehensive set of incidents for full ownership of a thing. The subsidiary assumption is that the pieces that are property rights compose the whole that is ownership or property, i.e., that property rights explain property. In questioning the standard view I argue that (1) property is explained by a custom of intelligent and meaningful human action and thus (2) property cannot be explained by the institution of property rights. The central claim is that, as a custom, property is a historical process of selecting actions conditional on the context.

When

12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. March 24, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 - 12:12

Anti-Judaism and Antisemitism, Usury, and Other Stereotypes since the Middle Ages

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Albrecht Classen (University of Arizona).

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
Stereotypes, prejudice, and antisemitism go hand in hand. But we have to be careful in assessing when the common narratives about Jews emerged and spread their toxicity. Many of the major arguments/claims against Jews emerged in the high and late Middle Ages, but those were constructed and then achieved their desired goal at specific time and in response to specific events. This talk will examine the curious history of the usury charge, one of the really poisonous and evil ones against Jews, and frame it with many insights into the available art-historical and literary evidence.

When

12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. Feb. 10, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 - 11:58

Some Thoughts on Why It is So Hard to Persuade Non-Liberals, and What We Might Do About It.

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Deirdre McCloskey (University of Illinois, Chicago).

Deirdre is Distinguished Professor Emerita of Economics and of History, and Professor Emerita of English and of Communication, adjunct in classics and philosophy, at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Trained at Harvard in the 1960s as an economist, she has written twenty-four books and some four hundred academic and popular articles on economic history, rhetoric, philosophy, statistical theory, economic theory, feminism, queer studies, liberalism, ethics, and law. She is well-known, among many works, for her 2019 Why Liberalism Works: How True Liberal Values Produce a Freer, More Equal, Prosperous World for All, and her massive economic, historical, and literary trilogy, The Bourgeois Era (2006, 2010, 2016).

Time: 4pm - 5:30pm (Note this is later than the normal FC Talk time)

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract
Liberalism is so obviously the philosophy of non-enslavement, or "adultism," he right as David once put it to Say No, that it is hard for liberals to understand how anyone would prefer toi live under enslavement to a husband or church or experts in Washington and be a perpetual child who must say, uh,  yes I said yes I will Yes.   Yet many, even most, do.  Why is that?  We can discuss various hypotheses, and better if we are to persuade our statist friends. Liberty is "conservative,," and is actually authoritarian.  Liberalism is social Darwinism, and hates the poor.  States are usually very nice, such as in Sweden.  It's scary to be an adult.  The state has all these goodies and I want mine.  The state has experts who must know what they are doing.  King and country are lovely.  It's wonderful to be a slave.  Et cetera.  Yes, such stances are incredible.  But if we just sneer we're not going to change anyone's mind.

When

4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Jan. 27, 2022

Where

Social Sciences 128

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Friday, January 28, 2022 - 08:23

Identifying "The Wrong" of Colonialism - and Why it Matters in the Post-Colonial World

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Allen Buchanan (University of Arizona) and Ritwik Agrawal (University of Arizona).

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
There is now a vigorous philosophical literature on “the wrong” of colonialism. Unfortunately, it is not clear whether the project is to identify (1) some wrong that is unique to colonialism, the distinctive wrong, or (2) a wrong common to all cases of colonialism, or (3) the most serious wrong of colonialism. In this essay, we argue that, contrary to the views of philosophers like Anna Stilz, Massimo Renzo, and Lea Ypi, the deprivation of self-determination is neither the distinctive wrong nor the most serious wrong of colonialism. Instead, we argue that the most serious wrongs of colonialism are severe economic injustices and practices of humiliation. Our view has significant advantages over accounts that focus on self-determination: it can make sense of the concepts of neocolonialism and internal colonialism and help explain the fact that anticolonialists did not regard their struggle as completed even after self-determination (in the form of independent statehood or that plus democracy) was achieved. Our analysis is guided by attention to the actual history of anticolonial struggles and the voices of the most prominent anticolonial leaders. 

When

12:30 p.m. April 21, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Wednesday, January 26, 2022 - 11:13

Reciprocity and the Rule of Law

The Freedom Center and Spring 2022 FC Talks series presents Alex Motchoulski (University of Arizona).

Time: 12:30-1:45

Location: Social Sciences 128

Abstract:
Fair play theories of political obligation aim to ground the duty to obey the law in a duty to repay debts of reciprocity that one owes to others who comply with the law. A challenge to these theories is that persons generally have discretion with respect to how to discharge a debt of reciprocity. If I buy you a drink, you might repay me by buying me a drink in return– but you could also buy me lunch, make me a gift, drive me to the airport, and so on. In the context of political obligation, this means that individuals could repay their debts of reciprocity in ways other than complying with the law, which undermines the ground for political obligation. This paper replies to this challenge. I argue that the principle of reciprocity shares a common ground with a principle of public equality, and that the latter ultimately requires the rule of law. The demands of the rule of law allow us to answer the objection from discretionary reciprocity. If individuals choose how to reciprocate, they may also choose whether and when the law applies to them. The rule of law cannot be sustained under such conditions. Hence, the demands of the rule of law set constraints on how individuals can reciprocate the benefits of others’ compliance with the law such that they may only comply in turn.  

When

12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. Feb. 17, 2022

Event Contacts

Digital Signage Date

Wednesday, January 26, 2022 - 11:10
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