Lecture: Samuel Fleischacker, “Empathy and Perspective: A Smithian Conception of Humanity”

Where: University of Melbourne, Australia

When: August 4th, 2015

Registration here.

Further Info:

This talk explores Adam Smith’s conception of empathy (roughly, what he called “sympathy”), and its connection, for him, with our understanding of our selves. I begin with a comparison between Smith and David Hume on sympathy, move to the role of perspective-taking in Smith’s discussion of the subject, then look at the degree to which empathy, and perspective-taking, figure in our construction of our identity, for Smith. I conclude by suggesting that Smith introduces a new conception of humanity by way of his view of empathy.

Samuel Fleischacker is Professor of Philosophy and Director of Jewish Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. His publications include The Ethics of Culture (Cornell, 1994), A Third Concept of Liberty: Judgment and Freedom in Kant and Adam Smith (Princeton, 1999), On Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations: A Philosophical Companion (Princeton, 2003), A Short History of Distributive Justice (Harvard, 2004), Divine Teaching and the Way of the World (Oxford, 2011), What Is Enlightenment? The Legacy of a Kantian Question (Routledge, 2013), and The Good and the Good Book(Oxford, 2015). Professor Fleischacker has been a Fellow of the University Center for Human Values at Princeton and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford.

Posted in the Early Modern Philosophy Calendar


CFP: Hume Society Conference 2016

Call for Papers: Hume Society Conference 2016

When: July 19-23, 2016

Where: Sydney, Australia

Call for Papers: papers should be no more than thirty minutes reading length (4000 words) and should be submitted with an Abstract (200 words). All self-references should be deleted for anonymous review. Papers and abstracts must be submitted in English. Papers should not have been published by the date of the conference. Authors may submit their papers as either MS Word documents or in rich text format (.rtf). Deadline for submissions: November 1, 2015.
Contact: web@humesociety.org.