in the Department of Philosophy and Religion

Philosophy Forum: The Rise of Nonreductive Physicalism

Dr. Kevin Morris

Tulane University

April 19th at 4:00-5:30 in the Library’s 3rd-floor Faulkner Room

“The Rise of Nonreductive Physicalism”

“Nonreductive physicalism is now widely viewed as the starting point for inquiry into the content of physicalist metaphysics. Yet much of this discussion proceeds without serious attention to the historical and philosophical milieu out of which it developed. I argue that the perceived inevitability of nonreductive physicalism results from dubiously imposing a metaphysical gloss on empiricist models of intertheoretical reduction, together with the presumptive failure of empiricist claims about the relations between the sciences. This comports with John Heil’s critique of levels-based metaphysics as being implicitly premised upon the ‘Picture Theory’ of language, according to which the character of the world can be read off from how the world is represented in language and thought.”

The format of this event will be a workshop of Dr. Morris’ paper. Requests for an advance copy of the paper can be directed to Dr. Donovan Wishon (

More information about future UM Philosophy Forum events can be found on the department calendar at