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The workshop

On 4th and 5th July 2016, New College of the Humanities will host a workshop on judgment.


Judgment is a mental act: more specifically, it is the activation of belief; and its object is a proposition.

Orthodoxy has it that a proposition is an abstract entity, existing independently of any mental or linguistic act, intrinsically possessing truth-conditions, and therefore susceptible of truth or falsity. It is also widely held that these entities can be the objects not only of cognitive attitudes, such as belief and knowledge, but also of conative ones, such as desire and intention – that one and the same thing can be e.g. believed and desired.

Opposed to this view is one on which the object of judgment is dependent upon the act itself: perhaps, for example, what one judges when one judges is essentially some type of judgment, much as what one dances when one dances is essentially some type of dance. Such a view would leave open the questions whether objects of judgment can also be objects of desire, for instance, and whether the latter are truth-apt.

This workshop will investigate these and related questions about judgment – both the act itself and its object – and the history of the attempts to answer them. It will take place over two days, and will bring together leading experts on judgment and the history of its philosophy.




Registration and welcome


Christopher Peacocke (Columbia, NCH, and SAS, London)
Logical Inference, Rationality, and Judgment


Maria van der Schaar (Leiden)
Leibniz on Judgment, Reason and the Sign of Assertion


Alexandra Newton (Illinois)
Kant on Judgment


Friederike Moltmann (CNRS and NYU)
Attitudinal and Modal Objects



Daniel Morgan (Barcelona)
Innocent Commitments?


Sandra Lapointe (McMaster)
Bolzano on Judging and Doing


Mark Textor (KCL)
Brentano and Frege on Judgment and Truth


Simon Blackburn (Cambridge, NCH, and UNC, Chapel Hill)
The Common Pursuit of True Judgment


Attendance is free but registration is required. To register, please email by Saturday 18th June giving your name, institutional affiliation, and any dietary requirements.


Inquiries can be addressed to the workshop organisers, Brian Ball and Christoph Schuringa, by email in the format:


The workshop organisers gratefully acknowledge the support of the Mind Association.