2015/2016

Disclosing the Fabric of Reality

The Possibility of Metaphysics in the Age of Science

Humanities

Principal investigators

Frode Kjosavik

Professor
Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)
Year at CAS

Camilla Serck-Hanssen

Professor
University of Oslo (UiO)
Year at CAS

Abstract

What are we to make of what is (so far) unobservable yet material, like parallel universes? Are natural numbers and set-theoretical objects invented, and therefore cultural artifacts, or are they discovered, and therefore already there, with all their properties, prior to human conceptions? Are there such things as "memes" that spread through some kind of "self-replication" within human cultures? Are there internal "instructions" and "programs" that direct organisms through their life cycles? To what extent is the world socially constructed rather than mind-independent? Can humans choose freely and act autonomously? Is there an inner structure of reality that the human intellect is able to grasp? In our project we will argue that this kind of questions are metaphysical and yet answerable if one develops the appropriate philosophical methods.

Fellows

Christian Beyer

Professor
Universty of Göttingen
Year at CAS

Michael Lee Friedman

Professor
Stanford University
Year at CAS

Dagfinn Føllesdal

Professor Em.
University of Oslo (UiO)

Leila Tuulikki Haaparanta

Professor
University of Tampere
Year at CAS

Mirja Hartimo

Postdoctoral Fellow
Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)
Year at CAS

Toni Tapio Kannisto

Postdoctoral Fellow
University of Oslo (UiO)
Year at CAS

Olli Koistinen

Professor
University of Turku
Year at CAS

Øystein Linnebo

Professor
University of Oslo (UiO)
Year at CAS

Charles Parsons

Edgar Pierce Professor Em.
Harvard University
Year at CAS

Houston Smit

Professor
University of Arizona
Year at CAS

News

We have some fantastic news to share: Professor Camilla Serck-Hanssen, CAS' esteemed director, has been offered an extension by our Board of Directors to continue in her role for another four years, until August 2029.

This month’s alumna is none other than our own Camilla Serck-Hanssen, professor of philosophy at the University of Oslo (UiO), former project leader at the Centre, and now director of CAS.

Frode Kjosavik and Camilla Serck-Hanssen recently published the book Metametaphysics and the Sciences: Historical and Philosophical Perspectives, a product of the CAS project the two philosophers led in 2015/16.

Events