Uriah Kriegel, professor of philosophy at Rice University and notable author, will deliver this year’s SUNY Oswego Steinkraus Lecture, titled “Advice to Moral Antirealists,” in a virtual presentation at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 21.

Kriegel has authored several books, most recently the September 2020 release, “The Oxford Handbook of the Philosophy of Consciousness.” Other books, also published by Oxford University Press, include “Subjective Consciousness: A Self-Representational Theory” (2009), “The Sources of Intentionality” (2011), “The Varieties of Consciousness (2015)” and “Brentano's Philosophical System: Mind, Being, Value” (2018).

Kriegel defines the term “moral antirealism” as “the view that there are no mind-independent moral facts,” and that “a major line of resistance to moral antirealism rests on the observation that moral discourse, moral thought and moral phenomenology all appear to carry a realist presumption.” (Kriegel defines phenomenology as the felt quality that some states of mind allegedly possess.)

Antirealists tend to address this resistance either by “trying to undermine the appearance of a realist presumption” or by “accepting the realist presumption and embracing an ‘error theory’ about moral discourse, thought and phenomenology,” Kreigel said. “Here I offer the antirealist a third way to handle the phenomena: I show how moral antirealists can grant realists everything they say about moral discourse, thought and phenomenology, without embracing error theory. The key will be a proper appreciation of the intricate structure of central moral concepts, notably the concepts good, bad, right and wrong.”

The philosophy department’s annual free lecture series has honored Warren Steinkraus since 1988. The late SUNY Oswego professor was co-founder of numerous philosophical societies. He was also an associate editor of the philosophy journal Idealistic Studies. Steinkraus, who died in 1990, consistently demonstrated genuine commitment to ideals such as equality, peace, nonviolence and aesthetic quality.

The Oswego College Foundation manages a fund supporting the lecture series, thanks to donations from many friends of Steinkraus and his family.

For more information, email SUNY Oswego philosophy faculty member Jared Peterson at jared.peterson@oswego.edu.