The Colloquium in Legal, Political, and Social Philosophy was founded by Ronald Dworkin and Thomas Nagel in 1987. It is the original model for all of NYU Law's colloquia. The Colloquium is now convened by Liam Murphy, Samuel Scheffler, and Jeremy Waldron, two of whom will host in any given year.
Each week on Thursday a legal theorist or moral or political philosopher presents a paper to the group, which consists of students, faculty from the Law School and other departments of NYU, and faculty from other universities. The choice of subject is left to the paper’s author, within the general boundaries of the Colloquium’s subjects, and the discussions are therefore not connected by any structured theme for the term as a whole, though in past years certain central topics were canvassed in several weeks’ discussion. The Colloquium aims, not to pursue any particular subject, but to explore new work in considerable depth and so allow students to develop their own skill in theoretical analysis. Each week’s paper is posted at least a week in advance, and participants are expected to have read it.
The public sessions of the colloquium will take place on Thursdays, via zoom invitation from 4:20 to 7: 10 pm. The papers will be posted in advance of each meeting on this page.
Students applying for credit:
Admission to the seminar is only by professor’s permission. Students wishing to take the colloquium for credit should send their applications (an e-mail letter with their background and interest in the colloquium) to Professors Waldron's assistant Lavinia Barbu, firstname.lastname@example.org, between June 1 and July 31. Before you send your application, if you are a non-Law student, please check with Academic Services to see if you are eligible to apply. When you apply let us know if you are enrolled in an NYU program and use the subject line Colloquium in Legal, Political and Social Philosophy Application for Fall 2020.
Students enrolled in the Colloquium meet separately with Professor Waldron/ Murphy for an additional two-hour seminar on Wednesdays. One hour is devoted to a review of the preceding Thursday’s Colloquium discussion, and one hour in preparation for the Colloquium of the following day. Students are asked to write short papers weekly, and each student is asked to make two or more oral presentations to the seminar during the term. Each student is asked to expand one of his/her weekly papers, or oral presentations, for a final term paper.
Professors Jeremy Waldron and Liam Murphy
Schedule of Speakers
Samuel Scheffler, NYU
Procreation, Immigration, and the Future of Humanity
Aditi Bagchi, Fordham
Moral Collective Action Problems and the Timing of Legal Rules
Lewis Kornhauser, NYU
An Achievement Concept of Law
Tommie Shelby, Harvard
Jeremy Waldron, NYU
Rebecca Stone, UCLA
Normative Uncertainty, Normative Powers, and Limits on Freedom of Contract
Andrei Marmor, Cornell
Richard Fallon, Harvard
Katja Vogt, Columbia
Liam Murphy, NYU
Frances Kamm, Rutgers
Torture: Rescue, Prevention, and Punishment
Sally Haslanger, MIT
David Estlund, Brown University
SPECIAL“POP-UP” session on Thursday, October 17 from 4-7 p.m.
Faculty Library, Vanderbilt Hall, 3rd floor
Although the Colloquium on Legal, Political, and Social Philosophy is on hiatus this year, it will convene a special “pop-up” session on Thursday, October 17 from 4-7 p.m. in the Faculty Library on the third floor of Vanderbilt Hall.
Professor Joseph Raz, who has long been an important member of the Colloquium community, will present a paper on this occasion, which marks the end of many years during which he has taught regularly at Columbia Law School each fall.
The paper is called Normative Powers.
Professors Jeremy Waldron and Samuel Scheffler
Schedule of Speakers
Eric Beerbohm, Harvard
Rick Brooks, NYU
Loyalty and What Law Demands: Self Interest, Sole Interest or Best Interest
Jan-Werner Mueller, Princeton
Individual Militant Democracy
Paper removered at the request of the author.
Antony Duff, University of Minnesota
Criminal Law and the Constitution of Civil Order
Veronique Munoz-Darde, UC Berkeley
The Priest, the Liberal and the Harlot: Liberalism and Sexual Desire
Liam Murphy, NYU
Purely Formal Wrongs
Michele Moody-Adams, Columbia University
Taking Expression Seriously: Equal Citizenship, Expressive Harm
and Confederate Iconography
Meir Dan-Cohen, UC Berkeley
On the (Im)morality of the Death Penalty
Amia Srinivasan, University of Oxford
Paper removed at the request of the author
Melissa Schwartzberg, NYU
Sheep May Safely Graze: On the Instrumental Justification of Democracy
Martha Nussbaum, University of Chicago
Other Animals Respecting Complex Forms of Life
Tom Nagel, NYU
Paper removed at the request of the author.December 6
Nancy Fraser, The New School
On the Political Contradictions of Financialized Capitalism
Professors Liam Murphy and Samuel Scheffler
The Conference for the Colloquium, September 7 and 8
Funded by the research project grant awarded to the late Ronald Dworkin as part of his 2014 Balzan Prize, the conference celebrates Ronald Dworkin’s work by celebrating the Colloquium in Legal, Political, and Social Philosophy, which he convened with Thomas Nagel from 1987 to 2011, joined in the early years by Lawrence Sager and David Richards.
The conference will comprise four modified colloquium sessions. The papers will be posted on this page two weeks in advance. Each session will last for two hours, and there will be just one interlocutor for the guest speaker in each session. Our four distinguished speakers all presented at the colloquium during the Dworkin/Nagel years. We are happy to have, as a guest interlocutor, our former colleague Lawrence Sager. The first session of the conference will take place in the traditional Thursday afternoon colloquium time slot. All sessions will take place in the traditional colloquium room.
4:00 – 4:30 Welcome by Dean Trevor Morrison and acknowledgements
4:30 – 6:30 Session One
Thomas M. Scanlon (Harvard)
Contractualism and Justification
Commentator: Samuel Scheffler (NYU)
Chair: Liam Murphy (NYU)
10:00 – 12:00 Session Two
Frank Michelman (Harvard)
Rawls’s Constitution-Centered Propositions on Legitimacy: A Friendly Interrogation
Commentator: Lawrence Sager (University of Texas, Austin)
Chair: Lewis Kornhauser (NYU)
12:00 – 2:00 Lunch
2:00 – 4:00 Session Three
Seana Shiffrin (UCLA)
Commentator: Liam Murphy (NYU)
Chair: Jeremy Waldron (NYU)
4:00 – 5:00 Break
5:00 - 7:00 Session Four
Joseph Raz (King’s College London and Columbia)
Can Moral Principles Change?
Commentator: Jeremy Waldron (NYU)
Chair: Samuel Scheffler
Daniel Viehoff, NYU
Legitimately Arresting the Innocent, and Other Puzzles about Officially
Grainne de Burca, NYU
Is Supranational Governance a challenge to Liberal Constitutionalism?
Samuel Freeman, University of Pennsylvania
Individual Freedom and Laissez-Faire Rights and Liberties
Jerry Gaus, Arizona University
The Complexity of a Diverse Moral Order
Robert Gooding –Williams, Columbia University
Ideology, Social Practices, Anti-Black Concepts
Susan Wolf, University of North Carolina
First reading: Aesthetic Responsibility
Second reading: Selves Like Us
Ekow Yankah, Cardozo University
The Sovereign and the Republic: A Republican View of Political Obligation
David Luban, Georgetown University
Arendt at Jerusalem
Laura Valentini, London School of Economics
There Are No Natural Rights
Juliana Bidadanure, Stanford University
Justice Across Ages: Treating Young and Old as Equals
Debra Satz, Stanford University
Equality and Adequacy as Distributive Ideals for Education