M. Queloz, "Evaluating Concepts By What They Express" Metaphilosophical Talk Series


PACE Project (in cooperation with the KiC Seminar, "Knowledge in Crisis project")

Matthieu Queloz, University of Bern

Evaluating Concepts By What They Express

Date: Mon April 29th, 2024.
Time: 11.30 - 13.00 hrs
Location: 2G, NIG, Universitätsstraße 7, 1010 Wien


After conceptual analysis was marginalized in the late twentieth century by the renewed dominance of metaphysics, the pendulum seems to be swinging back: philosophers are rediscovering methods that focus in the first instance on concepts. But they seem keener than ordinary language philosophers were to critically evaluate the concepts we inherited.

In this talk, I put forward a methodological proposal for how to evaluate concepts: I suggest that we can evaluate concepts by what they express—in particular, by what they express of the conditions under which their use would be pointful. I elucidate this notion of pointfulness conditions and connect it to the revival of state-of-nature genealogies in philosophy. I then show in what sense exactly this allows us to evaluate concepts.

Future Metaphilosophical Talk Series Talks:

Tue May 28th, 2024, 17.00 – 18.30 hrs
Catherine Z. Elgin, Harvard University, Cambridge

Mon June 11th, 2024, 17.00 – 18.30 hrs
Jennifer Nagel, University of Toronto