International philosophers discuss consciousness and the human mind

Jesse Prinz, distinguished professor of philosophy at CUNY Graduate Center

Jesse Prinz, distinguished professor of philosophy at CUNY Graduate Center, presents the keynote address on March 27.

The Ronald E. Moore Humanities Symposium, “Consciousness,” will take place March 27-29 on the TCU campus and will bring together ten internationally-recognized philosophers presenting papers on consciousness and the human mind. Presentations will begin at 2 p.m. on Thursday, March 27, and will conclude on Saturday, March 29, with a panel discussion starting at 4:30 p.m.

On Thursday, March 27, Jesse Prinz, distinguished professor of philosophy at the City University of New York Graduate Center, will give the keynote address at the Dee J. Kelly Alumni & Visitors Center beginning at 7 p.m. Prinz’ work focuses on the roles of perception, emotion and culture in human thought and values. He is the author of Beyond Human Nature: How Culture and Experience Shape the Human Mind (2012), as well as Furnishing the Mind: Concepts and Their Perceptual Basis (2002), Gut Reactions: A Perceptual Theory of Emotion (2006), The Emotional Construction of Morals (2011) and The Conscious Brain (2012).

An international cast of philosophers will join Prinz to present recent scholarship, including Katalin Balog (Rutgers University, Newark), Brit Brogaard (University of Missouri, St. Louis), Christian Coseru (College of Charleston), Bob Kentridge (Durham University), David Papineau (King’s College London), Amber Ross (University of Toronto), Susan Schneider (University of Connecticut), Michael Tye (University of Texas – Austin) and Kenneth Williford (University of Texas – Arlington).

“Consciousness is the most fundamental and pervasive aspect of our lives, and yet it is arguably the most puzzling. In fact, the more it’s studied the more problems it presents,” said Dr. Rik Hine, professor of philosophy at TCU. “So, in recent decades, specialists from a number of fields have combined efforts with philosophers to unravel these mysteries. In that tradition, we have invited philosophers, psychologists, neuroscientists and cognitive scientists to TCU as part of this ongoing project.”

The Ronald E. Moore Humanities Symposium is sponsored by the Ronald E. Moore Foundation. Moore is a TCU alumnus, Fort Worth native and patron of the arts and humanities. “This symposium addresses a topic that Ron Moore has been passionate about for some time,” Dr. Blake Hestir, professor of philosophy at TCU and symposium chair, noted. “We’re deeply grateful for his vision and support.” The symposium is also supported by TCU’s John V. Roach Honors College, AddRan College of Liberal Arts and Philosophy Department.

All events are free and open to the public and will be held at the Dee J. Kelly Alumni & Visitors Center, 2820 Stadium Drive. Ticket reservations are strongly encouraged. To reserve tickets or learn more, visit

Thursday, March 27
2 – 3:15 p.m.: Michael Tye, “Do Fish Have Feelings?”
3:20 – 4:35 p.m.: Amber Ross, “Mary the Zombie Slayer”
7 p.m.: Jesse Prinz, keynote address

Friday, March 28
8:45 – 10 a.m.: Katalin Balog, “Hard, Harder, Hardest”
10:05 – 11:20 a.m.: Christian Coseru, “Consciousness and Causal Explanation”
11:25 a.m. – 12:40 p.m.: Bob Kentridge, “Attention Without Consciousness”

Saturday, March 29
9:30 – 10:45 a.m.: Ken Williford, “Consciousness and Self-Acquaintance”
10:50 a.m. – 12:05 p.m.: Brit Brogaard, “Who’s Afraid of Qualia?”
1:30 – 2:45 p.m.: Susan Schneider, “The Mathematical Nature of Physics: A New Challenge for Physicalism”
2:50 – 4:05 p.m.: David Papineau, “Consciousness and Representation”
4:30 – 5:15 p.m.: Panel Discussion, “Philosophy, Neuroscience, and Buddhism,” with Katalin Balog, Christian Coseru, Bob Kentridge, Vanessa Miller