CFP: Moral change (postponed)

The workshop has been postponed. We will publish the new date as soon as we have it.




Call for Papers

Moral Change

Interdisciplinary workshop organized by the Centre for Ethics as Study in Human Value, University of Pardubice, The Czech Republic, 20-21.5.2020


This workshop explores the dynamics of change in the everyday moral frameworks we live by. What happened when slavery became unacceptable in 19th century US? How did the common vice of pawing one’s female employees become an offence that disqualifies a person as leader? How did the father lose his power to rule over the productive, social and sexual lives of spouse and adolescent or grown up children in mainstream western settings? What happens when the previously admired life style of the well to do middle class is, due to climate change, increasingly conceptualized as a moral problem? How should we understand the dynamics of the current conservative backlash, where principles of human rights are supplanted by nationalist concerns? What are the implications of such changes for moral thought?

 Although change is a defining feature of human communal life, explicit attention to it has had a negligible role in the formation of modern Anglophone moral philosophy. Centered on Universalist and general meta-ethical and normative theories, philosophers’ interest in historicity and moral renegotiations has been thin, in spite of important openings toward the history of ethics in late 20th century virtue ethics.

 Against this backdrop of a predominantly ahistorical universalist ethics a pattern of new philosophical work on change is currently emerging, with contributions by Kwame Anthony Appiah (2010), Jonathan Lear (2008), Rahel Jaeggi (2018), Michele Moody-Adams (1997), Philip Kitcher (2011), Nigel Pleasants (2010, 2018), and Cecile Eriksen (2019) among others. Also the booming fields of moral anthropology and the sociology of valuation are currently lively sites for philosophical thinking about moral change. This workshop offers an interdisciplinary platform for continuing and initiating such conversations.


Confirmed speakers:

James Laidlaw, Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge

Megan Laverty, Teachers College, Columbia University

Cecilie Eriksen, Philosophy, Aarhus University

Anne-Marie Søndergaard Christensen, Philosophy, SDU, Odense

Niklas Forsberg, Centre for Ethics, University of Pardubice

Joseph Wiinikka-Lydon, Centre for Ethics, University of Pardubice


We welcome abstracts from scholars in philosophy, anthropology, sociology, law, education and neighboring fields for papers (30 + 15 min.) on changes of collective moral/ethical norms, concepts, virtues, frameworks and conceptions of personhood, and the  kinds of normative, theoretical and meta-theoretical issues they raise. We are especially interested in cases where fundamental criteria of moral evaluation seem to be in motion.


Abstracts of no more than 400 words should be sent by February 16, 2020 to our conference secretary Philip Strammer: For all queries, please contact Nora Hämäläinen: