Fall 2000, Vol. XXIX, No. 2

Bulletin of the
HUME SOCIETY
Department of Philosophy - University of Iceland, IS-101 Reykjavík, Iceland


Call for Nominations to the Executive Committee
and for President of the Hume Society

The Hume Society now invites nominations to the Executive Committee and to the Presidency of the Society. Only members of the Hume Society are eligible for nomination; they must be proposed by at least two other members and must agree to serve if elected in order to be officially nominated. Proposals should be sent to the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Hume Society by 15 October 1999 for the elections to be held by mail ballot in November. Please note that according to the Society's constitution, "A member of the Hume Society shall be a person who has paid dues for the current year." Nominations may be sent to the Secretary-Treasurer by post (see address of the Hume Society, above) or e-mail <hume@hi.is> .

The Executive Committee is meant to be composed of ten members, nine of whom, including the President of the Society, are elected by the membership (in groups of three) to staggered three-year terms. The Secretary-Treasurer (elected by the Executive Committee to a five-year term) serves ex officio as the tenth member of the Executive Committee.

Those whose terms expire at the end of 2000 are Jane McIntyre, Jaqueline Taylor and our current President, John Biro. Of these three, only Jackie is eligible for re-election, Jane and John having now served two consecutive three-year terms. In any case, John does not seek re-election to the Presidency.

Hence, three persons must be elected this fall to three-year terms which will run through the end of 2003, one of them as President and the other two to regular seats in the Executive Committee. Nominators and seconders should make it clear whether they are proposing a candidate for a regular seat in the Executive Committee or for the Presidency.

Other members of the Executive Committee are currently: Tito Magri, A.E. Pitson and John Wright* (terms running to the end of 2001); Kate Abramson, Simon Blackburn* and Rachel Cohon (terms running to the end of 2002) and Mikael M. Karlsson (Secretary-Treasurer, appointed through the end of 2002).

*Will not be eligible for re-election when current term expires.

Williamsburg: a Sumptuous "Feast of Reason"

The Twenty-Seventh Hume Society Conference, "A Feast of Reason", was hosted by the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia from the 24th through the 29th of July 2000 and will be remembered as a well-organized, congenial event, remarkable both for its scholarly interest and its relaxed pace. The "Feast" was co-directed by Dorothy Coleman, James Dye, Tito Magri and Adam Potkay. The Society is extremely grateful to the conference directors and to the many other people who helped to make this a successful Hume Conference, and formal thanks were expressed at the business meeting in Williamsburg, held on July 29th (see below). The organization of a Hume Conference is extremely demanding and time-consuming. Conference organizers should be in no doubt that the Society very much appreciates their efforts. In keeping with the Society's traditions, the co-directors of the "Feast" were presented with gifts at the conference banquet by our President, John Biro: Dorothy, Jim and Adam received bottles of Scottish single malt, while Tito Magri was presented with a book.

Business Meeting. The Society's annual business meeting began promptly at 11:00 a.m. on July 29, 2000 and was chaired by Hume Society President John Biro. The agenda was announced in five parts: (1) Approval of the 1999 minutes, (2) Report of the President, (3) Report of the Secretary-Treasurer, (4) Announcements and (5) Other business.

(1) The 1999 minutes, as previously published, were unanimously approved.

(2) John Biro's report outlined the arrangements which have been made for future meetings:

(i) The Twenty-eighth Hume Society Conference is to be held in Victoria, British Columbia in late July, 2001, co-directed by :David Fate Norton (McGill University, University of Victoria), James Tully (University of Victoria), Paul B. Wood (University of Victoria) and Don Garrett (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). The preparations for this conference are well advanced, and a conference web site should be operational by September.

(ii) The Society has accepted an invitation from Helsinki University to hold the Twenty-Ninth Conference in Helsinki, Finland in early August, 2002. It was evident from the letter of invitation that there is local interest in hosting the conference and firm institutional support. Wade Robison and Mikael M. Karlsson have made themselves available to be co-directors along with Olli Loukola and Timo Airaksinen in Helsinki. Olli Luokola will head the committee responsible for local arrangements. The conference theme will be announced by September.

(iii) The Thirtieth Hume Society Conference is to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada in 2003, with Craig Walton chairing the organizing committee. Themes and precise dates have yet to be decided, but the commitment appears firm.

(iv) No site has yet been determined for the Thirty-first Hume Society Conference in 2004. The Society has received with interest an invitation to return to Marburg, Germany. Possibilities of holding this meeting in Spain or Italy are also being looked into. An attempt will be made to have a firm plan for this conference by December of this year.

(v) A suggestion has been made for organizing the Thirty-second Hume Society Conference in Chicago in 2005.

The President's Report was well received with brief discussion. An alternative suggestion was made from the floor to hold the 2005 conference in Toronto, Ontario. A follow-up to this suggestion will be forthcoming from David Owen and Stanley Tweyman.

(3) Mikael M. Karlsson submitted an annual financial report for 1999, reporting that the assets of the Hume Society, expressed in US$ amounted to $23,385.95 as of 31 December 1999. He also submitted an interim report, covering the period 1 January-30 June 2000, reporting that the assets of the Hume Society, expressed in US$, stood at $34,752.64. Mike also reported on the changes that have been made in the Society's web site, including the ELECTRONIC Bulletin of the Hume Society, which most members now accept in lieu of the printed Bulletin. He also explained that the transfer of the Internet post list "hume-l" to Iceland had been delayed for technical reasons but should be accomplished by September. (The full Secretary-Treasurer's Report is accessible through the Society's web site.)

The Secretary-Treasurer's Report was discussed briefly. Some suggestions were made for further improvements to the web site.

(4) Announcements:

(i) Elizabeth Radcliffe made these announcements concerning Hume Studies.

      (a) The 1990 double issue has appeared and has been sent to the membership.

      (b) The April 2000 issue, which is the 25th Anniversary issue of Hume Studies, is in active

      preparation and will be sent out this fall.

      (c) The November 2000 issue will be sent out just before, or shortly after, the end of this

      year. With the mailing of this issue, Hume Studies will effectively be back on schedule.

(ii) A web site for the Leeds Hume Project was announced. The URL is:  http://www.etext.leeds.ac.uk/hume/

(5) A motion expressing the Society's gratitude to the organizers of the Williamsburg Conference—Dorothy Coleman, James Dye, Tito Magri and Adam Potkay—was passed by acclamation.

Mikael Karlsson reminded members about the year-end Executive Committee and Presidential elections. Three persons should be elected to three-year terms; two to regular EC seats and one to the Presidency. Of the current EC members whose terms are ending, only Jacqueline Taylor is eligible for re-election; Jane McIntyre and the Society's current President, John Biro, have served two consecutive terms on the EC; and John does not seek re-election to the Presidency. A call for nominations will go out at the beginning of September.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:59.

Twenty-eighth Hume Society Conference
to be Held in Victoria, British Columbia
Dates Revised to July 25th-28th, 2001

As previously announced in the Bulletin, by special advertisement, and via the "hume-mem" Internet post list, the Twenty-eighth annual Hume Society Conference will be held in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, hosted by the University of Victoria. At the suggestion of the conference organizers, and with the approval of the Society's Executive Committee, the dates for the Victoria Conference have been changed slightly from those announced earlier. The purpose of the change is the minimization of travel and hotel costs to the participants.

On the revised schedule, the conference will begin on Wednesday, July 25, and will end Saturday night, July 28, 2001. This change shortens the conference to four days (four hotel nights) means that delegates can begin their homeward journey early Sunday morning after (it is hoped) qualifying for a lower airfare by staying over a Saturday night.

Co-directing the Victoria conference are: David Fate Norton (McGill University, University of Victoria), James Tully (University of Victoria), Paul B. Wood (University of Victoria) and Don Garrett (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill).

Papers on any aspect of Hume's life and works will be considered for the program. However, the conference directors especially welcome submissions on the following topics:

                                                • Hume and Locke

                                                • Hume and the Passions

                                                • Hume as Storyteller

Papers should be no longer than thirty minutes in reading length, with self-references deleted for blind reviewing; the author's name should appear only on a front cover sheet. Papers may be in English, French, or German, but an abstract in English of up to 150 words is required for all papers. In addition, the Program Committee invites brief (1200 words maximum) submissions for a symposium on Hume's remark, 'A wise man, therefore, proportions his belief to the evidence' (EHU 10.4). Several such submissions will be selected for presentation at this symposium, which will include ample opportunity for discussion by the participants and the audience. The submissions deadline for contributions of both kinds is November 1, 2000, which is now rapidly approaching.

The following persons will be featured as invited speakers: Dario Castiglione (University of Exeter), Rachel Cohon (State University of New York at Albany), Susan James, (Birkbeck College, University of London), Eugenio Lecaldano (University of Rome -"La Sapienza"), Mark Phillips (University of British Columbia), Geoffrey Sayre-McCord (University of North Carolina). Lecture titles will be announced on the conference web site (see below) .

Several book panels are scheduled.

A conference web site, containing additional information about the Victoria Conference, is now up and running:  http://web.uvic.ca/~humcon01/

Seventh Annual California Conference in Early Modern Philosophy to be Held at the University of California at Berkeley, October 13-14, 2000

The Seventh Annual California Conference in Early Modern Philosophy, organized by the California Scholars in Early Modern Philosophy and sponsored by the Doreen B. Townsend Center for the Humanities and the Department of Philosophy at Berkeley, will be held at the University of California at Berkeley, October 13-14, 2000.

Program

Friday, Oct. 13

1:50-3:30: "Locke and Hume on Belief, Judgment and Assent"; David Owen (U. of Arizona)

3:45-5:00: "Descartes on Achieving Clarity and Distinctness"; Lex Newman (U. of Utah)

  Saturday, Oct. 14

9:30-10:50: "Demons That Deceive, Gods that Perceive, and the Limits of Skepticism"; Charles McCracken (Michigan State University/Claremont)

11:00-12:20: Paper on Kant (title TBA); Tyler Burge (UCLA)

2:00-3:20: "Leibniz on the Eternal Truths"; Alan Nelson (UCI)

3:40-5:00: "Leibniz on Spontaneity and Self-Determination"; Donald Rutherford (UCSD)

Further information may be obtained from Tim Crockett at <phlos-bc@socrates.berkeley.edu>.

Antony Flew Awarded Schlarbaum Prize

The 2001 Schlarbaum Laureate is Antony G. N. Flew, emeritus professor of philosophy at the University of Reading, England. The prize, which is granted by the Ludwig von Mises Institute and carries a $10,000 cash award, recognizes Professor Flew's outstanding lifetime achievement in the cause of liberty.  Throughout his long career, Flew has stressed conceptual clarity in philosophy and has resolutely defended human freedom.

Flew was born in 1923 and attended St. Faith's Preparatory School, Cambridge, from 1930 to 1936, Kingswood School, Bath, from 1936 to 1941. His father was a clergyman, and Flew developed a strong interest in religion at an early age. Like many men of his generation, his progress toward an academic career was interrupted by the outbreak of World War II. Flew served in Royal Air Force Intelligence and was later attached to the Air Ministry.

OBITUARY: Paul G. Kuntz

  The Hume Society notes with sadness the passing of one of its members, Paul G. Kuntz of Emory University. Paul died in Atlanta on January 28th of this year, following a stroke suffered in Venice in June, 1999.