Conference Announcement!

January 7, 2012


4th Calvin College Annual
Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

May 4-5th, 2012

Keynote Speakers:

  TED SIDER             &             JILL NORTH


This year we are very pleased to have Cornell philosophers Jill North and Ted Sider as our keynote speakers. On Friday the 4th, Dr. North will kick off the conference with “The Structure of a Quantum World.” Dr. Sider will conclude the conference with “Against Parthood.”

See the official conference poster and brochure with the conference proceedings!


Calvin’s undergraduate philosophy conference is a two-day event held each year to promote excellence in philosophy. In addition to keynote lectures from leading contemporary philosophers, the conference provides students an opportunity to present and receive rigorous feedback on their own work in the form of formal comments from a peer and Q&A.


  • Participants: The conference is free of charge and open to the public.
  • Papers: Accepting papers on all topics in philosophy.
  • Lodging: Calvin students offering to host visiting students.
  • Contact: For further questions about the conference, please contact Chad McIntosh: cam39@students.calvin.edu


  • Submission deadline is March 15th. Acceptance notification is April 1st. All papers are subject to blind review.
  • Include detachable title paper with name, title, and institution affiliation. The paper itself should include only the paper title. Submit papers as attachments in pdf/word.doc format to Chad McIntosh (above email).
  • Papers should be prepared to be read within 30-45 minutes.

Is Alvin Plantinga a Crypto-Evidentialist?

September 21, 2011

Does one need evidence to be justified in believing in God? Those who answer “yes” are typically called “evidentialists.” Famously, Alvin Plantinga argues for a resounding “NO” to this question. Dr. Dougherty, however, will argue that subtle themes in Plantinga’s writings suggest otherwise–that Plantinga is a “crypto-evidentialist,” or maybe even a not-so-cryptic one.


3rd Annual Calvin College Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

April 19, 2011

plantinga2 We are pleased to announce Calvin’s own Alvin Plantinga as the keynote speaker.

See the official poster and conference brochure.

The conference is open to the public and is free of charge. Anyone is welcome! Refreshments will be provided, in addition to a free lunch catered to all attendants Saturday.

Be sure to check out Calvin’s news story about the conference!

Friday April 29, 2011
6:30pm Reception
7:30pm Keynote Speaker: Alvin Plantinga, “A New Argument Against Materialism”
Saturday April 30, 2011
8:30 Donuts and Coffee
9:00am Brian Schimpf (Ball State University), “Thoughts and  Qualifications on Transcendental Arguments”
Comments by Cameron Gibbs (Calvin College)
10:15am Ryan Austin (Huntington University), “Temporal Parts and the Status of Personhood of the Unborn and the Undead”
Comments by Hong Chen (Calvin College)
11:30am Andrew Brenner (University of North Florida), “Do A-Theories of Time Entail a Finite Past?”
Comments by Eddy Chen (Calvin College)
12:45pm Lunch: Provided!
2:00pm Kevin Dupree (University of Central Florida), “Virgil’s Lesson for Mariology: A Response to Dennett’s Physicalist Account of Mary’s First Experience of Color”
Comments by Emi Okayasu (Calvin College)
3:15pm Timothy Cuffman (Cedarville University), “Redeeming (Rhizomatic) Enclaves”
Comments by Lander Hultin (Calvin College)
4:30pm Drew Hiller (St. Louis University), “Beauty in the Musical Experience: Understanding Varieties of Aesthetic Judgment”
Comments by Nick Colegrove (Huntington University)

Continue reading below for further details. Read the rest of this entry »


Philosophy Symposium 2010-2011

September 18, 2010

This past Wednesday marked the beginning of Fall 2010 Philosophy Symposium. With many changes and exciting events announced, the year should be a good one!

One new thing we will be doing is offering Symposium Superlatives—awarded to deserving participants for various achievements such as “Boldest Argument” or “Raised Most Devastating Objection.” Any ideas for other Superlative achievements? Let us know!

Also new is weekly-updated archives for each week’s presentation.

Stay tuned for other announcements regarding weekly events, details on the scheduled debate, and Calvin’s 3rd Annual Undergraduate Philosophy Conference.


“Theistic Arguments as Grounded in Natural Signs”

October 24, 2008

C. Stephen Evans will be joining us for next week’s Symposium. Here’s an abstract of his paper:

“This paper argues that there are “natural signs” for God that make it possible to have knowledge of God’s reality.  The concept of a natural sign is taken from Thomas Reid’s theory of perception, though the theistic natural signs differ in some ways from Reidian natural signs.  Theistic natural signs are both widely available and easily resistible; humans have native, in-built dispositions to recognize them, but our ability to “read” and interpret them properly is greatly influenced by experience and other beliefs.  Natural signs lie at the core of many of the classical theistic arguments, and recognizing this helps us understand both why the arguments continue to have appeal even if they fail as conclusive proofs.  The claim of contemporary psychology that humans are “hard-wired” to believe in God or gods is discussed as evidence for this account of religious knowledge.”

Good deal!


Philosophy Graduate School Info

October 15, 2008

This Wednesday, for something completely different, Prof. Clark will present an assortment of info regarding philosophy graduate school programs. This is a great oportunity both for junior/seniors considering graduate studies, as well as freshman/sophomores wanting to know more about what the philosophy world really looks like. As usual, pizza and refreshments will be served. All are invited!

On the “Blogroll” column on the right you can find Brian Leiter’s “philosophical gourmet” which is a controversial but still influential assessment (and ranking) of graduate programs according to specific areas of interest. Find out what school seems the most interesting and come ask Prof. Clark for his opinion!

Click around, get a feel for this new venture and let us know how we could make this a better tool for our department!

Emmalon, Tim, Luis.