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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Report from Great Britain

Just a quick update from Great Britain. We have now arrived in St. Andrews and are looking forward to the amazing talks starting today. Our tour of Great Britain began about a week ago with a fantastic Epistemology and Linguistics conference, organized by Martijn Blaauw. Kent Bach opened with Bach-y solutions to a number of problems in epistemology, including the apparent shiftiness of the truth-value of knowledge-attributions. Joe then talked about the most general factive mental state operator (and guess what? It ain't 'knows that'). I was next with my new cleft approach to knowledge-wh. Meanwhile there were other fun parallel sessions going on. As for the other keynote addresses, my friend Peter Ludlow concluded on the first day with a talk on knowledge reports and indexicality. Ram Neta replied. The next day my soon-to-be-colleague Jonathan Schaffer came on stage and showed that if the knowledge account of assertion is correct, then we ought to be contrastivists. After some super-interesting parallel sessions we reached the grand finale: Jason Stanley's talk on knowledge and action. Actually, it was, strictly speaking, Stanley and John Hawthorne's joint talk. But Stanley covered it brilliantly alone, with a very interesting reply from Duncan Pritchard.

So much for the serious part of the conference. After all the talks and dinners we waisted valuable time drinking ale, scotch and the like at Scottish clubs. And don't ask Stanley or Ludlow whether they went to Babylon, because they will most certainly deny it. Anyway, pictures will follow, as soon as Ludlow will allow it.

After Aberdeen we went to a nice mini-conference in Edinburgh. The conference was organized by Jesper Kallestrup and Matthew Chrisman, and the speakers included Ram Neta, Duncan Pritchard, Jonathan Schaffer, Joe and I. A fantastic day and a fantastic night out in Edinburgh. We then went down to Manchester and York and have just arrived back in Scotland. That is, we arrived yesterday, and we finally got to meet the famous philosopher of language Gabriel Segal whose work I have replied to on earlier occasions. The adjectives conference (which is organized by Herman Cappelen and Jason Stanley) begins today. So expect more updates. Next week I will report from various workshops in Copenhagen.