"The accident of where one is born is just that, an accident; any human being might have been born in any nation"
Martha Nussbaum, 'Patriotism and Cosmopolitanism' in For Love of Country (Beacon Press, 2002)

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Back from Amsterdam

I'm now back in Sheffield for a few days before heading off to Nottingham for the ALSP conference on Global Justice. I spent the Easter weekend at home in Cambridgeshire with my parents - it was a nice opportunity to relax after getting back from Amsterdam late Friday night. Amsterdam was lovely, as I expected it would be. The snow on Friday morning was however unexpected!

The ETMP conference was really enjoyable. My paper was in the first session, and was well attended. There were some good questions and positive comments which are always nice to receive! The general thrust of many of the questions was a doubt about whether the particularist needs to be too worried about objectivity (one of my criticisms in the paper is that objectivity is going to be lacking for the particularist). It became clear during the discussion that the reasons I have for thinking that a lack of objectivity is a problem for particularists stem from the location of the debate in global justice literature. As a general approach to ethics particularism can do without (perhaps) objectivity, but in the context of the search for a comprehensive theory of global justice, it seems to become more of a problem. All in all I'm pleased with the reception to the paper. I don't think I'll be taking it any further in it's current form however, because I think it would work much better if the focus was restricted to the context of the global justice literature, rather than ethical theory in general. 

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