Conference Program

Morality, Moral Philosophy, and the Humanities in the Age of Neuroscience

November 17-20, 2016
Kent State University Hotel and Conference Center | 215 South Depeyster Street, Kent, Ohio



4:30-6:00 Registration

5:30-5:45 Welcome and Opening RemarksDix Room

Mark Bracher, Professor of English and Director, Neurocognitive Research Program for the Advancement of the Humanities (NRPAH), Kent State University
James Blank, Professor of Biology and Dean, College of Arts & Sciences, Kent State University

5:45-7:00 Keynote AddressDix Room

Human Morality: Features and Bugs,” Joshua Greene, Professor of Psychology, Harvard University
Introduction: Deborah Barnbaum, Professor and Chair, Department of Philosophy, Kent State University

7:00-9:00 Reception with Cash Bar



8:00-9:00  Continental Breakfast Buffet and RegistrationHotel Cafe

9:00-10:30 PanelDix Room

The Moral Self
Panel Chair: Janis Crowther

  1. "The Moral Self: A Philosophical Perspective,” Joshua August Skorburg
  2. "The Moral Self: A Social Psychological Perspective," Jim A.C. Everett
  3. "The Moral Self: A Social Neuroscientific Perspective," Jordan Livingston
  4. "The Moral Self: A Cognitive Neuroscientific Perspective,” Michael Ferguson

10:30-11:00 Break

11:00-12:00 Plenary AddressDix Room

Morality for Actual Lives,” Peggy DesAutels, Professor of Philosophy, University of Dayton
Introduction: Michael Byron, Professor of Philosophy, Kent State University

12:00-1:00 Lunch, Kent Room

1:00-2:30  Panels

A. Free Will, Cognitive Control, and Dual ProcessesDix Room
Panel Chair: Phillip Hamrick

  1. “Situating Emotions in a Dual-Process Account of Moral Judgment,” Daniel Shargel
  2. “The Neuroscience of Moral Responsibility,” Samuel Murray
  3. “Social Emotion and Moral Grammar:  Two Sources of Moral Intuition,” Haoying Liu

B.  Literature and Moral DevelopmentMcGilvrey Room
Panel Chair: Matthew Coate

  1. “Tragedy, Moral Responsibility, and the Neuroscience of Decisions,” David Palmer
  2. “Using Literary Emotion for Ethical Change,” Dana Munteanu
  3. “Human Bias in Ibsen’s Enemy of the People,” Todd O. Williams

2:30-3:00 Break

3:00-4:00 Plenary AddressDix Room

Implicit Moral Attitudes and their Philosophical Implications,” Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Chauncey Stillman Professor of Practical Ethics, Duke University
Introduction: David Pereplyotchik, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Kent State University

4:00-4:30 Break

4:30-6:00 Panels

A. Morality, Self, and SocietyDix Room
Panel Chair: Gina Zavota

“Persuading Ourselves We’re Moral,” Ashton T. Sperry
“Using Ricoeur’s Phenomenology of the Capable Human Being as a Complementary Perspective to the Cognitive and Neuroscientific Findings on Morality,” Diane Laflamme

B. Normative Ethics, Metaethics, and NeuroscienceMcGilvrey Room
Panel Chair: Michael Byron

  1. “What Should an Empirical Critique of Kantian Ethics Look Like?”  Kevin Mills
  2. “Ethical Implications of Neuroscience:  Realism without Rationalism,” Thomas Kiefer
  3. “Two Roles for Neurocognitive Science in Constitutivism,” Caleb Dewey

6:00-7:30 Reception with Cash Bar



8:00-9:00 Continental Breakfast Buffet and RegistrationHotel Cafe

9:00-10:15 Panels

A. Comeuppance: Nineteenth-Century Fiction and Neurocognitive Justice, Panel I, Dix Room
Panel Chair: Françoise Massardier-Kenney

  1. “Fairy Tales and Morality: Tales of Vulnerability,” Fritz Breithaupt
  2. “Moral Judgment and the Adultery Novel: How Stories Can Shape Side-Taking Decisions,” Brian Tucker
  3. “The Unknowable Baron: Alterity and Moral Trust in Social-Critical Realism,” Jenny Strakovsky

B. The Cognitive Bases of Moral Decision-MakingMcGilvrey Room
Panel Chair: Murali Shanker

  1. “Professional Ethical Identity and Decision-Making in Experts Versus Novices,” Morgan Kiper Riechel
  2. “Can Improving Episodic Cognition Make Us Better Moral Judges?”  Nathan Stout
  3. “Facts as Determinants for Morality:  How Human Action, Reason, Cognition, and Social Activity Determine What We Ought to Do,” Michael S. Dauber

10:15-10:30 Break

10:30-11:30 Plenary AddressDix Room

Embodied Wisdom: Human Nature and Human Potential,” Darcia Narvaez, Professor of Psychology, University of Notre Dame
Introduction: Jon A. Sefcek, Assistant Professor of Psychology, Kent State University

11:30-12:00 Break

12:00-1:00 Plenary AddressDix Room

The Logic of Communities of Trust,” Mark Alfano, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Delft University of Technology  
Introduction: Susan Roxburgh, Professor of Sociology, Kent State University

1:00-2:00 Lunch, Kent Room

2:00-3:15 Panels

A. Neuroscience or Not?  The Psycho-Biological Origins of Morality, Dix Room
Panel Chair: Joshua Pollock

  1. “Locating the Normative Insignificance of Neuroscience,” Thomas Noah
  2. “Fetal Origins of the Moral Self: Vestibular Experiences,” Azucena Verdin

B. Moral Education and Ethical PraxisMcGilvrey Room
Panel Chair: Frank Scalambrino

  1. “Moral Education and Personality: Practicing Virtues in Childhood,” Maria Judith Sucupira de Costa Lins and Carla Christina Silveira Sousa
  2. “Increases in Empathy and Theory of Mind after a Middle School Reading Unit Vary with Gender, Book and Format,” Louise Freeman
  3. “The Methodological Pursuit of Lived Experience,” Sara J. Newman, Elizabeth Tomlinson, and Ya’el Courtney

3:15-3:30 Break

3:30-4:30 Plenary AddressDix Room

Adventures in Story Science: The Ethical Function of Literature in an Experimental Age,” Angus Fletcher, Associate Professor of English, Ohio State University
Introduction: Tammy Clewell, Professor of English, Kent State University

4:30-5:00 Break

5:00-6:00 Panels

A. Morality, Sociality, and EvolutionDix Room
Panel Chair: TBA

  1. “Is It Good to Cooperate? Testing the Theory of Morality-as-Cooperation in 60 Societies,” Oliver Scott Curry, Daniel Austin Mullins, and Harvey Whitehouse
  2. “Gossip:  Social Intelligence and Evolutionary Origins,” Brian Robinson

B. Comeuppance: Nineteenth-Century Fiction and Neurocognitive Justice, Panel II, McGilvrey Room
Panel Chair: Maryanne DeJulio

  1. “Transnationalism and Infidelity: Morality and the Nation,” John Lyon
  2. “How MacGuffins Work: Justice, Truth, and Satisfaction in George Sluizer's The Vanishing,” William Flesch

6:00-7:00 Reception with Cash Bar

7:00-9:00 Banquet, Kent Room

Banquet Address

"On Philosophy and Social Science: Virtue as Social Intelligence and Beyond,"  
Nancy E. Snow, Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Institute for the Study of Human Flourishing, University of Oklahoma
Introduction: Mark Bracher, Professor of English and Director, Neurocognitive Research Program for the Advancement of the Humanities (NRPAH), Kent State University



8:00-9:00  Continental Breakfast Buffet

9:00-10:00 PanelDix Room

Trolley Problems, Moral Judgment, and Moral Experimentation
Panel Chair: David Pereplyotchik

  1. “Beyond Emotional Deontology—Emotional Focus and Cognitive Orientations Conjointly Shape Moral Judgments,” Johannes T. Doerflinger and Peter M. Gollwitzer
  2. “Let a Thousand Methods Bloom:  On the Neuroscience of Moral Judgment and the Reverse Inference Problem,” Brett Karlan

10:00-10:30 Break

10:30-11:30 Plenary AddressDix Room

"Gratitude, Giving, and Gray Matter. Altruism in a Changing Brain."  Christina Karns, Research Associate, Brain Development Lab, University of Oregon
Introduction: Ernest Freeman, Professor and Director, Biomedical Sciences Program, Kent State University

11:30-12:30 Round Table Wrap UpDix Room

12:30 Box Lunch, Kent Room