All meetings will be held at Room HC203 Francis Close HallUniversity of Gloucestershire,Swindon Road, Cheltenham.between 7.30 and 9.30pm
Wednesday, November 12th. 2014. Dr. Roy Jackson, University of Gloucestershire will give a talk on ‘A Philosophical Novel: Hayy ibn Yaqzan’
The philosophical tale ‘Hayy ibn Yaqzan’ , named after the hero of this story and written by the Muslim philosopher Ibn Tufayl (1105-1185), was the first Arabic novel, and anticipates such European works as Daniel Defoe’s ‘Robinson Crusoe’ and Jean- Jacques Rousseau’s ‘Emile’, as well as the thought of a number of western philosophers including Locke and Kant. The talk will discuss some of the philosophical themes contained within the novelRoy is Reader in Philosophy of Religion at the University. He has lectured in Philosophy and Religion at various universities, including Kent, Durham, Roehampton, and King’s College, London. Among his various publications are ‘Nietzsche and Islam’ (2007); ‘What is Islamic Philosophy?’ (2014); and ‘The Complete Introduction to Nietzsche’ (2014). His ‘Complete Introduction to Plato’ is forthcoming.
Wednesday, November 26th. 2014. Dr. Graham Spencer, Gloucestershire Philosophical Society, will speak on ‘British Philosophers and the American Revolution’.
For Americans the word ‘freedom’ is almost sacred. No other country on earth places such store by it. The need for political and religious freedom was the driving force of the American Revolution, and its centrality in American political discourse remains to this day. What is overlooked, however, is the extent to which the founders drew upon the work of British philosophers to develop their ideas of political freedom. The talk will explore the contributions made by a few notable British philosophers to American ideals of freedom.
Graham has presented papers on a number of occasions to the Society and to the related ‘Piggy’ weekly seminar group. Most of his working life was spent in the area of local authority social housing: e.g., homelessness and policy development at the London Borough of Havering and Westminster City Council. After retirement he spent five years in Adult Education at Essex County Council. He has studied politics, philosophy and history at Birkbeck, London University and the University of Winchester.