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The University of Southampton

Inaugural Lecture - Professor Alex Neill Event

27 June 2013
Lecture Theatre A Avenue Campus University of Southampton Southampton SO17 1BF

For more information regarding this event, please email Tracy Storey at .

Event details

Part of Humanities 2012-2013 Inaugural Lecture series

'Philosophy and the Art of Tragedy'

This lecture will be chaired by Professor Anne Curry, Dean of Humanities.

Philosophy's interest in the art of tragedy is as ancient as tragedy itself.  This interest has manifested itself in a variety of ways, but in all of these manifestations we can see a common thread:  an attempt to come to terms with the value of tragedy.  This is one of the most notorious of the issues on which Plato and Aristotle disagreed, and the centuries since have seen some of the most influential figures in the history of Western philosophy address the question of tragedy's nature and particular value as a form of art.

In this lecture, I propose to focus on one of the most active episodes in the history of philosophy's engagement with tragedy, that which took place in 18th Century British philosophical thought.  To some extent, the lecture is intended as an introduction to the material, offered to show how philosophically varied and interesting the terrain here is.  But I shall also be developing a line of argument, to the effect that even in this intellectually rich period, when philosophy's preoccupation with tragedy was so concentrated, its attempt to provide an account of why tragedy holds the importance that it has done virtually since the birth of Western civilization left some of the fundamental issues at stake unanswered.

Each of the Inaugural Lectures in Humanities will have an end of lecture collection for the speaker's nominated charity.  For this lecture Professor Neill has chosen to support the Antokia Children's Charity.


This lecture will be streamed live, please follow the link in the right.

Speaker information

Professor Alex Neill,Pro Vice-Chancellor (Eduacation) and Professor of Philosophy

Professor Anne Curry,Dean of Humanities and Professor of Medieval History

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