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Author: BWS Vice-President (page 1 of 15)

Wittgenstein, Nature, and Religion

Wittgenstein, Nature, and Religion

2nd ERB Project Workshop

Nova Institute of Philosophy (IFILNOVA)

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities – Nova University of Lisbon (NOVA FCSH)

29 July 2020 

Is it right to think, as Daniel Dennett does, of religion as a natural phenomenon? Is religion to be explained in terms of evolutionary theory and cognitive science? Or should we perhaps explain it in cultural, economic, or philosophical terms? Are each of these kinds of explanations of religion legitimate? Are they in competition with each other? These are the kinds of questions that we hope to shed some light on in our Zoom workshop by examining cognitive science of religion and naturalistic understandings of religion in the light of Wittgenstein’s work.


09:15 – 09:30   Nuno Venturinha (Nova University of Lisbon) and Sofia Miguens (University of Porto)


09:30 – 10:15   Robert Vinten (Nova University of Lisbon)

A Wittgensteinian Critique of Cognitive Science of Religion

10:15 – 11:00   Alexandra Dias Fortes (Nova University of Lisbon)

‘From a Religious Point of View’: Wittgenstein on Nature and Belief

11:00 – 11:30   Break

11:30 – 12:30   Modesto Gómez Alonso (University of La Laguna)

Wittgenstein, Religious Belief, and Human Agency     

12:30 – 13:30   Break

13:30 – 14:30   Thomas D. Carroll (The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shenzhen)

Wittgenstein, Naturalism, and Interpreting Religious Phenomena

14:30 – 15:00   Break

15:00 – 16:00   Gorazd Andrejč (University of Groningen / University of Cambridge)

                         Wittgenstein, Religion, and Posthumanism

16:00 – 16:30   Break

16:30 – 17:30   Guy Axtell (Radford University)

Natural Thoughts and Unnatural Oughts: Wittgenstein, Faith, and the Inescapability of Inductive Normativity

17:30 – 18:00   Break

18:00 – 19:00   Duncan Pritchard (University of California, Irvine / University of Edinburgh)

                          Exploring Quasi-Fideism

This workshop is organized by Nuno Venturinha, Sofia Miguens and Robert Vinten within the framework of the FCT-funded project “Epistemology of Religious Belief: Wittgenstein, Grammar and the Contemporary World” (PTDC/FER-FIL/32203/2017), hosted by the Reasoning and Argumentation Laboratory (ArgLab) of IFILNOVA.

Attendance is free of charge. Please contact Robert Vinten at  for details of the Zoom workshop if you would like to attend.For more information about the project, please visit:

Now in paperback

Wittgenstein Famiy Letters

Wittgenstein-Studien (De Gruyter)

Edited by Juliet Floyd, Yi Jiang, Stefan Majetschak, Richard Raatzsch, Nuno Venturinha and Wilhelm Vossenkuhl

Designed as an annual forum for Wittgenstein research, the yearbook Wittgenstein-Studien publishes articles and materials on Ludwig Wittgenstein’s life, work and philosophy, and on his philosophical and cultural environment. All submitted articles are peer-reviewed.

We are currently accepting submissions for volume 12 (2021). Articles should be prepared according to the journal’s author guidelines ( and sent to the Editor-in-chief, Prof. Dr. Stefan Majetschak, at  by 31st August 2020. Book review proposals can be sent to the Book Review Editor, Prof. Dr. Nuno Venturinha, at  by the same deadline.For more information about Wittgenstein-Studien, please visit:

Wittgenstein’s Philosophy in Times of Crisis

We would like to announce the launch of an online workshop on Wittgenstein’s Philosophy in Times of Crisis, short WPTC.
For the list of upcoming talks, instructions on how to join and for further information on WPTC please visit our website:
The first session of the workshop will take place on Thursday, 28th May with Oskari Kuusela‘s talk “Later Wittgenstein on moral good: realism without postulated moral properties or naturalistic reduction”.
In case you have any questions feel free to contact anyone from the organising committee – see the information on the website.

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Best wishes,

WPTC organisers
Wei Zeng (Nagoya, Japan)
Haiqiang Dai (Beijing, China)
Danka Radjenović (Landau, Germany)
Saori Makino (Chiba, Japan)
David Palme (Erfurt, Germany)

Conference Cancellation

We regret that these uncertain times have left us with no choice but to cancel the 11th BWS conference from now. The BWS hopes that it will take place at some other point in the future. In the meantime, please stay safe and well isolated!


Please note that the BWS lists events from many other organisations across the world. In the current situation, it is impossible to keep track of cancellations. So, if you are considering an event, it is vital to check with the organisers. Please do not rely on the BWS website for notice of cancellations. Thanks.


Sorry - we have had to cancel this event. BWS Occasional Lecture: Problems of Expression in the later Wittgenstein - Michael Campbell.

Mental Health in Education: New Perspectives from Philosophy

Mental Health in Education: New Perspectives from Philosophy

Colloquium 17 June 2020

University of Warwick

The University of Warwick is hosting a one-day colloquium, jointly funded by the British Academy and the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain, to explore therapeutic philosophical traditions in light of educational issues, and in response to calls by policy makers that schools should be teaching about mental health. Philosophers, psychoanalysts and education researchers will bring their experience and expertise to the conversation. There will be a special focus on Wittgenstein and Stanley Cavell.

Speakers: Josh Cohen (Goldsmiths), Richard Gipps (Oxford), Joanna Moncrieff (UCL), Adrian Skilbeck (IOE/Winchester), Paul Standish (IOE), Emma Williams (Warwick), and ‘in conversation’ with Adam Phillips (psychoanalyst and writer).

Register on Eventbrite (use the password ‘therapy’) or by emailing 

Organised by Emma Williams, Centre for Education Studies, University of Warwick.

Dr. Emma Williams | Associate Professor and Director of Impact | CES

Two-day Masterclass on Wittgenstein’s Epistemology of Religion with Professor José María Ariso (UNIR, Madrid)

Nova Institute of Philosophy (IFILNOVA)

Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities – Nova University of Lisbon (NOVA FCSH)

Two-day Masterclass on Wittgenstein’s Epistemology of Religion with Professor José María Ariso (UNIR, Madrid)


26 February 2020

18-21, FCSH, Av. de Berna, Room TA 03

Religious certainty: What it is and to what extent it can be taught

In the first session, Professor Ariso will present the concept of “religious certainty” he has developed by drawing inspiration from Wittgenstein’s notion of “certainty”. After describing the particular traits of religious certainty, he will address two difficulties derived from this concept. On the one hand, he will explain why religious certainty functions as such even though all its consequences are far from being absolutely clear; on the other hand, he will clarify why, unlike the rest of certainties, the loss of religious certainty does not result in the collapse of the world-picture made up of all certainties. Subsequently, he will analyse the extent to which the teacher can teach religious certainty by acting as a facilitator for its acquisition – if desired – particularly bearing in mind that religious certainty cannot be attained at will.

28 February 2020

10-12, FCSH, Campolide, Room CAN 219

Advantages and paradoxes of regarding omniscience as subjective certainty in Wittgenstein’s sense

In the second session, Professor Ariso will try to facilitate understanding of the concept of “omniscience” by taking into account the terminology developed in Wittgenstein’s On Certainty. Thus, he will start by explaining why omniscience can be regarded neither as grounded knowledge nor as ungrounded or objective certainty. Instead, omniscience might be considered as subjective certainty, which has the advantage of leaving scope for a doubt that enables and strengthens religious faith. Lastly, he will clarify how God’s omniscience would be enriched if He were informed of – without needing to share – our objective certainties, in addition to which he will highlight two paradoxes that would arise if we disagreed with God regarding some of our objective certainties. These paradoxes reveal that even though the believer could not understand God’s statement literally, it might strengthen her faith if she realized and accepted that a true and consistent commitment to such statement entails the suspension of her own capacity for judgment.

José Maria Ariso has studied philosophy at the Complutense University of Madrid. After obtaining his PhD in 2003, he spent some research stays in Norwegian (Bergen) and German (Leipzig, Kassel, TU-Berlin and Frankfurt) universities. Since 2011 he has been an assistant professor in the Department of Education at the International University of La Rioja. He has published books, several chapters in edited volumes and a number of articles in international journals. His main line of investigation is the analysis of Wittgenstein’s later work, but his research interests also cover the fields of philosophy of education, philosophy of psychiatry, philosophy of technology, theory of knowledge and Spanish contemporary philosophy. He is the author of Wahnsinn und Wissen: Zu Wittgensteins Lage und Denkbewegung (Königshausen & Neumann, 2012), the editor of Augmented Reality: Reflections on Its Contribution to Knowledge Formation (De Gruyter, 2017) and the co-editor (with Astrid Wagner) of Rationality Reconsidered: Ortega y Gasset and Wittgenstein on Knowledge, Belief, and Practice (De Gruyter, 2016).  

This masterclass is organized within the framework of the FCT-funded project “Epistemology of Religious Belief: Wittgenstein, Grammar and the Contemporary World” (PTDC/FER-FIL/32203/2017, PI: Nuno Venturinha), hosted by the Reasoning and Argumentation Laboratory (ArgLab) of IFILNOVA.

Attendance is free of charge.For more information about the project, please visit:

PUCPR promove VII Workshop Wittgenstein: Fronteiras da Cognição

Destaque - 11 fev 2020

Evento reunirá pesquisadores de diferentes países da América Latina

Durante os dias 26 e 27 de março, a PUCPR sediará o VII Workshop Wittgenstein: Fronteiras da Cognição, evento que contará com a presença de pesquisadores do Brasil, Argentina, México e Peru para discutir os limites e conexões entre linguagem e cognição, a partir da visão do filósofo austríaco Ludwig Wittgenstein.

Wittgenstein foi um dos pensadores mais influentes do século XX e colocou a linguagem no centro de suas pesquisas, destacando-se no campo linguístico e posicionando o tema em um outro patamar de importância. “É notório que utilizamos modelos semânticos para compreender e significar a realidade, mas precisamos avaliar quais são estes limites e como tais questões repercutem em domínios particulares das ciências em geral. O trabalho de Wittgenstein não está restrito apenas ao domínio da investigação filosófica, mas tem despertado pesquisas cada vez mais significativas em áreas como Matemática, Física e Direito”, explica o professor Léo Peruzzo, um dos organizadores do evento.

O workshop será aberto ao público e as inscrições devem ser feitas na Escola de Educação e Humanidades, onde o evento ocorrerá.

O VII Workshop Wittgenstein: Fronteiras da Cognição é uma realização do Grupo de Pesquisa Wittgenstein, em parceria com o Programa de Pós-Graduação em Filosofia (PPGF) da PUCPR, e apoio do CNPQ/CAPES.


VII Workshop Wittgenstein: Fronteiras da Cognição

Data: 26 e 27 de Março

Horário: das 8h às 18h

Local: Escola de Educação e Humanidades

Inscrições: Escola de Educação e Humanidades – (41) 3271-2626

VII Workshop Wittgenstein reúne pesquisadores para discutir discutir os limites e conexões entre linguagem e cognição, a partir da visão do filósofo austríaco Ludwig Wittgenstein
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