Why should action theory deal with art, and why should aesthetics turn to action?


What business does action-theoretical philosophy have in dealing with art, and what can aesthetics possibly gain from a turn to action? 

Let us work from the under-formulated etiological view that in ‘art’ people make and appreciate certain sorts of objects in certain sorts of contexts. Traditionally, the discussion on aesthetics has centered on conceptual and theoretical inquiries into what makes these objects, contexts and experiences peculiar, namely, by focusing on 3 principal types of questions: What objects count as ‘art’? What is the experience of art like? What do certain words used in explaining ‘art’ mean (e.g. ‘representation’, ‘expression’, ‘beauty’, ‘pleasure’, ‘aesthetic’)? More recently, these questions have been tackled in analytic aesthetics mostly under the heading of the debate on the definition of ‘art’, for which, over the last five decades, particularly in the last 10-15 years, there have been many significant (if inconclusive) proposals. This pseudo-definition has been put forth to assuage both skeptical and non-skeptical approaches to the definition of ‘art’: ‘Art’ is whatever we treat as ‘art’. The obvious flaw with this formulation is that it begs explanation as to what it means ‘to-treat-something-as-art’. This difficulty has been tackled by attempts to define what ‘art’ 

is, by appealing to different types of criteria set out by the available definitional projects. Meta-methodological work in this vein is typically devoted to explain (and hopefully settle) why a given set of criteria ought to be adopted or refused, in order to understand the objects, experiences and contexts of art. As alternative, we propose to clarify what it means ‘to-treat-something-as-art’, and thus to bring light to problems of philosophical aesthetics by attempting to describe actions in art, or the structures of action in art. The methodological work required by this approach is however not provided by traditional aesthetics; in our view, help must be sought from contemporary action-theoretical philosophy and the current research on practical rationality. Hence, our choice of procedure. Moreover, believing that examples drawn from art provide a demanding case study for action-theoretical philosophy, our ‘action-oriented’ approach to art will focus on intention, action explanation, models of process control, direction of fit, value sensitivity, specification of ends, evaluative judgment, collective action, mental acts, desiring and belief. Action theorists have not yet been seriously concerned with art-related issues. This is mostly due to the transitional stage in which current debates seem to stand. Mapping out new boundaries in action theory is therefore a pressing task, which our focus on art aims to bring about.





Humberto Brito, Principal Investigator, University of Lisbon / New University of Lisbon (post-doctoral fellow)

Alberto Arruda, Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon (doctoral student)

Alda Rodrigues, Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon, Nova Institute of Philosophy / New University of Lisbon (doctoral student)

Ana Almeida (external member), Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon.

Brett Bourbon, English Department (Associate Professor) / University of Dallas, Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon (Associate Visiting Professor)



Nuno Amado, Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon, Nova Institute of Philosophy / New University of Lisbon

Miguel Tamen, Program in Literary Theory (Chair) / University of Lisbon, Romance Languages and Literatures / University of Chicago (Visiting Professor)

Pedro Tiago Serras (external member), Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon. 

Sara Eckerson, Program in Literary Theory / University of Lisbon, Nova Institute of Philosophy / New University of Lisbon (doctoral student)

Advisory Board


Candace Vogler, Philosophy / University of Chicago

Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht, Comparative Literature / Stanford University

José Maria Torralba, Departamento de Filosofía / Universidad de Navarra

Peter Lamarque, Philosophy / University of York

Jerrold Levinson, Philosophy / University of Maryland

Nuno Venturinha, Nova Institute of Philosophy / New University of Lisbon




This project began in a previous one, titled «Literature and Art in the Space of Reasons», which aimed to clarify how a discussion about literature and art should conform to what Wilfrid Sellars called «the logical space of reasons» (EPM, 169). Its seminars were devoted to debate the implications of placing philosophical discussions on art and literature—understood as practices—in the normative realm of justifications. The conversation gradually shifted from concepts such as e.g. «function», «representation», «properties», «aesthetic», «experience», «context», «conventions», «institutions», toquestions concerning topics such as intention, action, practice, narrative, community. It culminated in a programmatic description of what we saw as a turn to action in aesthetics, an action-oriented aesthetics.

Two PhD dissertations resulted from this previous project. The formal proposal of «Intention, Action, and the Philosophy of Art» to FCT funds resulted from that programmatic description. The project was active from October 2010 to January 2012, supported with seed funds [IFL-S-1] from the Nova Institute of Philosophy



To undertake this project, we have organized the core of our work into four long-­term, monthly, seminars: (1) a seminar on Anscombe’s Intention, (2) a seminar on action theory, (3) a seminar on philosophy of art, and (4) a seminar for original papers. In seminar (1)  we discussed and translated Anscombe’s book into Portuguese. (The translation is forthcoming in 2015.) In seminar (2) we read and discussed a selection of essays and book chapters of contemporary action-theoretical philosophy. In seminar (3) we read and discuss a selection of essays and book chapters from contemporary aesthetics, whose topics reflected the research of the team members. In seminar (4) we read and discussed each other, and sometimes original work by invited speakers.

On a later stage of the project, so that its participants could benefit from a wider feedback (and stronger criticism) from colleagues and faculty members, the meetings of seminar (3) were held in the Program in Literary Theory’s Philosophy and Literature Workshop

Aside from our regular meetings, the project held a series of one-day colloquia, as well as meetings with consultants devoted to specific tasks, namely the Portuguese translation of Anscombe’s Intention, the preparation of the On-line Companion to Intention (in progress), and a (now aborted) book project titled Actions in Art. 

Five colloquia, four monthly seminars, four PhD dissertations, the translation of Ancombe's Intention, and a series of publications and papers presented have resulted directly from this project. 

Should we include the work prepared during its inception stage, the project delivered two more PhD dissertations, as well as the Portuguese translation of Sellars's Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind (forthcoming in 2015). For a detailed list, please consult → OUTPUTS.





Conferences and Workshops


Actions in Art

20 March 2012, FCSH, New University of Lisbon



Humberto Brito, «Drawing Inferences». Jerrold Levinson, «Falling in Love with a Book». Miguel Tamen, «Surrounding Yourself With Art». Peter Lamarque, «Wanting to Know the Author». Brett Bourbon, «Gossiping and Spreading Rumours».





Literature, Action, and Agents

18 January 2013, Senate House, University of London


Peter Lamarque, «Poetry and Expression». Humberto Brito, «Second-Natural Judgments». Eileen John «Literature, Conversation and the Sharing of Reasons». Alberto Arruda, «A Characteristic Action». Ana Almeida, «Whitmanian Normativity». Constantine Sandis, «Are We Superhuman Or Are We Dancer? Agency in the Work of Anthony Powell». John Hyman, «Intentional Action».

Held in collaboration with the British Society of Aesthetics, the Mind Association, the Aristotelian Society, the Humanities and Arts Research Centre at Royal Holloway University of London in partnership with the Centre for Literature and Philosophy University of Sussex, and the Institute of Philosophy, School of Advanced Study University of London. 





Vida Colectiva





Alda Rodrigues «Acções e Colecções», Ana Almeida «Pessoas Colectivas», Sebastião B. Cerqueira «Equipas no Cinema», Nuno Amado, «Futebol e Decisões», Miguel Tamen «Invisible Hands», Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht «Spectators in a Stadium as a 'Mystical Body'?»





Intention, Action, and Art

23 June 2015, FLUL / University of Lisbon 


Miguel Tamen: opening remarks. António Marques on the collaboration between the Nova Institute of Philosophy and the Program in Literary Theory. Humberto Brito, «The Project». Morning panel: «Translating Intention», chaired by Nuno Venturinha; panel participants: Ana Almeida, Nuno Amado, Alberto Arruda, Humberto Brito, Sara Eckerson, Alda Rodrigues, Pedro Serras. Afternoon panel: «Intention, Action, and Art», chaired by António M. Feijó; panel participants: Brett Bourbon, Humberto Brito, Miguel Tamen.







Four monthly seminars take place for the duration of this project: a seminar devoted action theory, in which we read and discuss contemporary action­-theoretical philosophy; a seminar devoted to contemporary philosophical aesthetics; a seminar for the translation of Elizabeth Anscombe's Intention into Portuguese; and a seminar devoted to discussing drafts of original papers by project members and by colleagues. The sessions of the latter were hosted by the Philosophy and Literature Workshop at the Program in Literary Theory. 


Portuguese translation of G.E.M. Anscombe's Intention.

+ translation of Wilfrid Sellars' Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind (see inception)



Four PhD dissertations have resulted from this project.



Defense forthcoming in 2015. 

This dissertation focuses on the philosophy of Ricardo Reis, Fernando Pessoa’s pagan heteronym, namely his concern with (negative) actions generally left unexamined by modern action theoretical philosophy. Specifically, it aims to understand the extent to which Reis’s (rationalist) theory of poetry and his practical philosophy («a sad Epicureanism»)  are mutually dependent. It analyzes how Reis’s stance on poetry and action is rooted in, or rather rebukes, traditional Epicurianism and Stoicism via Walter Pater’s aestheticism. Secondly, it describes this stance in relation to the influence of Alberto Caeiro (the Master figure amongst Pessoa’s heteronyms). Lastly, it culminates in a theory of heteronimity, according to which the creation of the heteronyms is required by the fundamental gap Fernando Pessoa sees between mind and action.




Defense forthcoming in 2015.
This thesis presents a hermeneutics of music based in Schleiermacher’s theory of hermeneutics. It principally examines the music of Beethoven in light of grammatical and psychological interpretation, with reference to the practice of critical and performance interpretation. The final chapter describes A.B. Marx’s theory of a musical Idee, which is considered from the perspective of hermeneutic analysis and the way in which music can portray universals and ideal content with a foundation in GWF Hegel’s Aesthetics.




This thesis examines the moral implications of indifference: of being indifferent to others, of being indifferent to what goes on in the world, and of being indifferent to oneself. Specifically, the chapters of this dissertation are devoted to the relations between action and mind, practice and personal identity, and, finally, to the relations of reciprocity between people.



«A Theory of Collection» (2015)

This dissertation looks into some clichés commonly associated with the topics of collectors, collections, and collecting, namely the ideas that collections are located in a dimension disconnected from life, and that collectors are bizarre and dangerous creatures. Instead, it aims both to assess the integration of collections in collectors’ lives, and to understand the ways in which the study of collecting activities helps us to describe and clarify other human activities.




Ana Almeida

 «Inseparabilidade» (2012)
«Inseparability» (2012)

Pedro Tiago Serras

«Racionalidade Radical: Um Argumento sobre Interpretação» (2012)
«Radical Rationality: an argument on Interpretation» (2012)




  • Almeida, Ana. «Inseparable From Your Own Life» (2013), Common Knowledge 2015, Volume 21, Number 1: 5-8.

  • _________. «Ética e Narratividade», [«Ethics and Narrativity»], Diacrítica, Braga: Centro de Estudos Humanísticos da Universidade do Minho, 2013, pp. 133-149. ISSN 08078967.

  • Amado, Nuno. «Palhaças e Coisas Sérias» (2015), forthcoming in the Proceedings of 100 Orpheu Conference.

  • _________. «O Dia Triunfal do Dia Triunfal», in Revista Estranhar Pessoa, 1st issue, October 2014. 

  • _________. (review of) Jerónimo Pizarro, Pessoa Existe?: Ensaística Pessoana, Lisboa: Ática, 2012, in Forma de Vida 3, September 8, 2013. ISSN 2183-1343

  • Arruda, Alberto.«A Machine as Symbolizing its Action» in Mind, Language, and Action: Papers of the 36th International Wittgenstein Symposium, Volume XXI Kirchberg am Wechsel (Austria): Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society, 2013.

  • _________. «Intention in the Investigations.» In Knowledge, Language and Mind: Wittgenstein’s Way to the Investigations, edited by Nuno Venturinha, António Marques, Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2012.

  • Bourbon, Brett. The Faces of Words: Eight Lectures on the Ethos of Poems (book, submitted). 

  • «The Attentions of Caricature», to be published in a collection of essays from the conference The Attentions of Art.

  • _________. «Simeen Farhat: The Shapes and Colors of Sense», Artist introduction for Chris Worley Arts (August, 2013).

  • _________. «Words, Shapes, Colors», ArtNow (July 2013).

  • Brito, Humberto. «Actos Mentais em Pessoa» [«Mental Acts in Pessoa»] (submitted)

  • _________. «Knowledge of People» (submitted)

  • _________. (translation of) Anscombe, G.E.M. A Intenção. [with Ana Almeida, Nuno Amado, Alberto Arruda, Sara Eckerson, and Pedro Tiago Serras], Lisbon: Babel (forthcoming in 2015).

  • _________. «In Praise of The Poetics», Fictional Characters, Real Problems: Essays on the Ethical Content of Literature. Garry Hagberg (ed.), Oxford University Press (forthcoming in 2015).

  • _________. (review of) Martin Hägglund, Dying For Time: Proust, Woolf, Nabokov, Harvard University Press, 2012. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, March 1, 2013.

  • _________. «Rethinking Aristotle’s poiêtikê technê”, Rethinking Mimesis: Concepts and Practices of Literary Representation, S. Isomaa, S. Kivistö, P. Lyytikäinen, S. Nyqvist, M. Polvinen and R. Rossi (eds.), Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012.

  • _________. «A Poiêtikê Technê como Instrumento Meta-Filosófico”, Kriterion, Belo Horizonte, nº 125, Jun./2012, p. 41-58.

  • Eckerson, Sara. «Contrarianism in the Philosophy of Music and the Role of the Idea in Musical Hermeneutics and Performance Interpretation,» in Teorema, Vol. XXXI/3, 2012, pp. 137-148. [ISSN: 0210-1602] Blind, peer-review evaluation. [BIBLID 0210-1602 (2012) 31:3; pp. 137-148] Indexed in the Web of Science - Arts and Humanities Citation Index, Latindex, Répertoire bibliografique de la filosophie, The Philosopher's Index.

  • _________. «Elvira: The Colossal Feminine Character, from Donna Abbandonata to the Embodiment of Modern Sorrow» in Kierkegaard’s Literary Figures and Motifs. Sources, Reception and Resources, Volume 16, Tomo I: Agamennon to Guadalquivir, ed. by Jon Stewart and Katalin Nun. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing, 2014, pp. 171–186. ISBN: 978-1-4724-4136-2. 

  • _________. «Figaro: The Opera and the Character He Represents» in Kierkegaard’s Literary Figures and Motifs. Sources, Reception and Resources, Volume 16, Tomo I: Agamennon to Guadalquivir, ed. by Jon Stewart and Katalin Nun, Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing, 2014, pp. 243–249. ISBN: 978-1-4724-4136-2

  • _________. «Zerlina: A Study on How to Overcome Anxiety» in Kierkegaard’s Literary Figures and Motifs. Sources, Reception and Resources, Volume 16, Tome II: Gulliver to Zerlina, ed. by Jon Stewart and Katalin Nun, Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing, 2015. ISBN: 978-1-4724-4884-2.

  • _________. «Kierkegaard’s Musical Ideas: Determinations and Reconciliation of ‘A Cursory Observation’ and ‘The Immediate Erotic Stages,’» in Kierkegaard and the Challenges of Infinitude: Philosophy and Literature in Dialogue, ed. by José Miranda Justo, Elisabete M. de Sousa, René Rosfort, Lisbon: Centro de Filosofia da Universidade de Lisboa, 2013, pp. 33–38. ISBN: 978-989-8553-19-5.

  • _________. «Understanding a Musical Work: the Dialogue Between Listening and Textual Analysis» Música, Discurso, Poder, Maria do Rosário Girão Santos and Elisa Maria Lessa, eds., V.N. Famalicão: Edições Húmus / Universidade do Minho, 2012, pp. 243–250. ISBN: 978-989-8549-18-1

  • _________. «Determining Value in Sense Impressions of Music and Interpretations,» in The 34th International Wittgenstein Symposium, Epistemology: Contexts, Values, Disagreement, ed. by Christoph Jäger and Winfried Löffler, Kirchberg am Wechsel: The Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society, 2011, pp. 64–66. [ISSN: 1022–3398]

  • _________. «A Reflection on Søren Kierkegaard’s Musical Criticism and Philosophical Activity: review of Formas de Arte: a prática crítica de Berlioz, Kierkegaard, Liszt e Schumann by Elisabete M. de Sousa,» in Kierkegaard Secondary Literature. Sources, Reception and Resources, Volume 18, Tome V: Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, ed. by Jon Stewart, Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing (forthcoming).

  • _________. «Hermeneutics in the philosophy of music: uncovering ideal content and the musical Idee,» Humanities, Special Issue «‘Reading the Beat’–Musical Aesthetics and Literature» ISSN 2076–0787. Peer-review. (Forthcoming, July 2015).

  • (review of) Beethoven, FidelioRecensões da Forma de Vida [Forma de Vida Reviews], April 8, 2013. ISSN 2183-1343

  • Rodrigues, Alda. «People and Things: Questions Museums Make Us Ask and Answer», in Anna Bergqvist, Victoria S. Harrison e Gary Kemp (eds.). 2015. Philosophy and Museums: Ethics, Aesthetics and Ontology. Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement, Cambridge University Press [forthcoming].

  • _________. «The Collector at Home» (CETAPS, Centre for English, Translation and Anglo-Portuguese Studies,  Proceedings of Relational Forms II Ex certa scientia: Literature, Science and the Arts – An International Conference da Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto), [forthcoming].

  • _________. «Noções de memória e colecção na casa-museu de John Soane». in Actas de Processos de Musealização: Um Seminário de Investigação Internacional, Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto, 5-7 November 2014.

  • _________. (review of) Crónicas: Imagens Proféticas e Outras (3.º volume), J. Bénard da Costa, Recensões da Forma de Vida [Forma de Vida Reviews]. April 23, 2015. ISSN 2183-1343

  • Pereira, Carlos A. «Decay as Self-creation: William Basinski´s The Disintegration Loops», Necsus, Amsterdam, Special Issue #4, Autumn 2013, Amsterdam University Press.

  • _________. (review of) How To Do Things With Fictions, Joshua Landy. Recensões da Forma de Vida [Forma de Vida Reviews], April 8, 2013. ISSN 2183-1343

  • _________. «Ainda o livro de Landy» [Reply to Landy], Forma de Vida 2½, 2013. ISSN 2183-1343

  • Tamen, Miguel. What Art is Like, In Constant Reference to the Alice Books, ISBN: 978-0-674-06706-6, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard UP. 2012, 117p.

  • (review of) Morson Gary SaulThe Words of Others: From Quotations to Culture. (New Haven, CTYale University Press, 2011), Common Knowledge (2015) 21(1): 123.

  • _________. «Interpretation and Resistance», Common Knowledge, Durham, 18:2, pp.208-19, 2012. 

  • _________. «Homeless», Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies, Dartmouth, MA., (21-2) V.K. Mendes & V.M. Souza eds., pp.133-42, 2012

  • _________. «In Defense of Louis XVI», Common Knowledge, 19:2.Durham, 2013, 205-10.

  • _________. «Fotografias impossíveis [Impossible Photographs]», Portinho da Arrábida. 100 anos de memórias. Exposição de fotografia, s/l: Clube da Arrábida, 2013, 15-35.

  • _________. «Trust in Art / Confiança na arte» (preface to) Maria Teresa Gonçalves, Fakes in Art, Lisboa: Scribe, 2013, 13-6.

  • _________. (review of) Jonathan Lamb, The Things Things Say, Princeton: Princeton UP, 2011. Common Knowledge, 19:3. Durham, 2013, 556-7.

  • _________. «Fogo posto [«Ars0n»], Forma de Vida 4, 2014. ISSN 2183-1343 


Papers Prepared and presented


Ana Almeida

  • «Whitmanian Normativity», Literature, Art, Agents Conference, Institute of Philosophy, University of London, January 18, 2013.
  • «Pessoas Colectivas», Colóquio Vida Colectiva, Rede de Filosofia e Literatura, Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas da Universidade Nova de Lisboa, January 21, 2013.
  • «Sobre um Álbum de Fotografias», Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura, January, 2014.


Nuno Amado

  • «Palhaçadas e Coisas Sérias» [«Clowneries and Serious Things»], 100 Orpheu Conference, Faculdade de Letras da Universidade de Lisboa, Centro de Literaturas de Expressão Portuguesa das Universidades de Lisboa (CLEPUL), 16-20 de March, 2015.
  • «Jogadas de Futebol» [«Plays in Football»], Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura, Rede de Filosofia e Literatura do Instituto de Filosofia e Linguagem (IFL) da Universidade Nova de Lisboa, na FLUL.
  • «Orpheu e... Eurídice» [«Orpheus and... Eurydice»], Assuntos Órficos [Orphic Affairs], 9th Public Seminar of the Estranging, March 5-6, 2015.
  • «‘A Única Restança Posta nos Capitéis do Tempo’: a ode I do Livro I de Ricardo Reis» [«‘A Única Restança Posta nos Capitéis do Tempo’: on the Ode I of Book I, by Ricardo Reis»], Tópicos Pessoanos [Pessoan Topics], Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal, October 23, 2014.
  • «A Morte de Alberto Caeiro» [«The Death of Alberto Caeiro»], Assuntos Magistrais [Magistral Affairs], 8th Public Seminar of the Estranging Pessoa Project, New University of Lisbon, Faculty of Social and Human Sciences. October 9-10, 2014. 
  • «O Negócio do Ócio: as odes de Horácio como oferendas aos deuses» [«The business of otium: Horace's odes as gifts to the gods»], Colóquio Internacional XIV A. D. Saeculum Augustum [A. D. Saeculum Augustum XIV International Colloquium], Centro de Estudos Clássicos e pelo Centro de História da FLUL, em Lisboa, September 24-26, 2014.
  • «A Yellow House: Remarks on ‘A Way You’ll Never Be’», Ernest Hemingway Society 16th Biennal International Conference, Ernest Hemingway Society, Venice, June 22-27, 2014.
  • «O Dia Triunfal do Dia Triunfal» [«The TriumphalDay of the Triumphal Day»], Colóquio Internacional O Dia Triunfal de Fernando Pessoa [Fernando Pessoa's Triumphal Day International Colloquium], Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian. March 8, 2014.
  • «Ricardo Reis e Intenções» [«Ricardo Reis and Intentions»], Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura, Rede de Filosofia e Literatura do Instituto de Filosofia e Linguagem (IFL) da Universidade Nova de Lisboa.
  • «Ceifeiras e Pastores» [«Reapers and Shepherds»], Assuntos Ortónimos [Orthonimous Affairs], 7th Public Seminar of the Estranging Pessoa Project, September 26-27, 2013.
  • «Wordsworth: Intimações às coisas que passam» [«On Wordsworth's Intimations»],  Poesia no Museu [Poetry in the Museum], Museu da Música, Lisboa.
  • «Futebol e Decisões» [«Football and decision-making»], Vida Colectiva/Collective Life, 4th Philosophy and Literature Annual Conference, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, January 24, 2013.


Alberto Arruda

  • «The Primitiveness of Action», Actions and Reasons, 3rd Philosophy and Literature Annual Conference, Institute for Philosophy of Language, January 13, 2012.
  • «A Characteristic Action», Literature, Actions and Agents, University of London (UK), por British Society of Aesthetics, the Mind Association, the Aristotelian Society and the Humanities and Arts Research Centre at Royal Holloway, University of London, in partnership with the Centre for Literature and Philosophy at the University of Sussex and the Philosophy and Literature Network, January 18, 2013.
  • «Solipsismo e Materialismo//Reductionism and Eliminativism», 6 Ideias sobre Solipsismo [6 Ideas on Solipsism], Universidade Nova de Lisboa, February 27, 2o14.
  • «Sobre Gravar Música» [«On Recording Music»], Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura, Universidade de Lisboa, November 19, 2014.


Brett Bourbon

  • «The Attentions of Caricature,» Keynote address, presented by invitation at The Attentions of Art conference, The University of Hungary, September 2014.
  • «The Avionics of Wyl E. Coyote,» presented by invitation at the undergraduates at The University of Dallas, October, 2013.
  • «Some Particularities of Poems,» presented by invitation at The University of Lisbon, June, 2013.
  • «Some Comments on Travel in the Early Modern Period,» presented by invitation at The University of Chicago, May 2013.
  • «Trifling Descriptions,» presented by invitation The North Texas Jane Austen Society, April, 2013.


Humberto Brito

  • «Action and Recognition in Aristotle» Acción, emociones e identidad / Action, emotions and identity: Elements for a theory of late-modern societies, Instituto Cultura y Sociedad, Universidad de Navarra. November 7, 2014.
  • «Actos Mentais em Pessoa» [«Mental Acts in Pessoa»]. Philosophy and Literature Workshop, Program in Literary Theory, University of Lisbon. November 4, 2014.
  • «Segundos Pensamentos» [«Second Thoughts»]. Assuntos Magistrais [Magistral Affairs], 8th Public Seminar of the Estranging Pessoa Project, New University of Lisbon, Faculty of Social and Human Sciences. October 9-10, 2014.
  • «To exist as a person.» Lusophone Modernisms, Stanford University, Iberian and Latin American Cultures. April 8, 2014.
  • «Existir como pessoa.» O Dia Triunfal de Fernando Pessoa, Fundação Calouste     Gulbenkian. March 6, 2014.
  • «Knowledge of People.» XVII Congresso da Sociedade Interamericana de Filosofia, Salvador da Bahia. October 10, 2013.
  • «Percepção não episódica», Philosophy and Literature Workshop, Program in Literary Theory, University of Lisbon, December 10, 2014.
  • «Action, Plot, Person», Instituto Cultura y Sociedad, Universidad de Navarra. October 24, 2014.
  • «On Second Natural Judgments», Literature, Actions, Agents. University of London, Senate House. January 18, 2013.
  • «Sobre juízos de segunda-natureza» [“On Second-Natural Judgments], Philosophy and Literature Workshop, Program in Literary Theory, University of Lisbon, January 13, 2013.
  • «Perceber uma Acção e Perceber um Aspecto» («Understandig an action and understanding an aspect»), 1st Luso-Brazilian Colloquium for Wittgensteinian Studies, New University of Lisbon. July 9, 2012.
  • «Drawing Inferences: Thinking Because of Art», Actions in Art, New University of Lisbon, March 20, 2012.


Sara Eckerson

  • «A.B. Marx and the musical Idee: a re-interrogation of musical meaning from the perspective of 19th-century performance» to be presented at the Fourth Biennial North American Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music, Merrimack College, North Andover, MA, USA. July 16–18, 2015.
  • «For the Sake of Thematic Unity: Experimentation with Dynamics Beyond the Conventional Paradigm in Beethoven’s Early Bonn Keyboard Sonata WoO 47 No. 1 (1783)» presented at the 34th International Beethoven Research Symposium at the University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. September 19, 2014.
  • «Beethoven’s Piano Arrangement of Die Geschöpfe des Prometheus (Op. 43): Notes on the Reproduction of Orchestral Sonorities on the Keyboard» presented at the 30th International Beethoven Research Symposium at the University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. November 22, 2013.
  • «The 'Appassionata' Second Theme: Variation in Expression and Deriving Meaning from Variations» presented at the 28th International Beethoven Research Symposium at the University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. June 7, 2013. 
  • «Expressive Markings in Beethoven’s Op. 106: A Performer’s clue toward embodying critical interpretation in performance» Performance Studies Network 2nd International Conference, University of Cambridge, UK, April 4 –7, 2013 (not delivered)
  • «Expressive Markings in Beethoven’s Early and Late Works for Piano: a Reflective Study on Op. 2, Numbers 1-3 and Op. 106» presented at the Royal Music Association Research Students' Conference, [Session sponsored by the Society for Music Analysis], University of Southampton, UK. January 3, 2013.
  • «Muzio Clementi and Traces of his Potential Influence on Beethoven, with Special Focus on Expression and Thematic Material» presented at the 25th International Beethoven Research Symposium, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. November 16, 2012. 
  • «Kierkegaard's ‘Musical Ideas’: Determinations and Reconciliation of ‘A Cursory Observation’ and ‘The Immediate Erotic Stages’» presented at the International Conference ‘Kierkegaard: Philosophy, Literature and the Challenges of Infinitude,’ Faculty of Letters, University of Lisbon, Portugal. October 25, 2012.
  • «Towards Determining Value of Expressive Indications in ‘Allegro Risoluto’ Movement of Op. 106 for Philosophical and Performance Interpretation» presented at the 24th International Beethoven Research Symposium, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. September 28, 2012. 
  • «Indications of Mood, the Musical ‘Idee’ and Op. 106: Seeing Hermeneutics in Performance» presented at the Manchester International Beethoven Conference, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. June 25 – 7, 2012.
  • «Towards a Hermeneutics of Music: Listening to Idee» at the Teses da Teoria, Faculty of Letters, University of Lisbon, June 20, 2012.
  • «Philosophy as a Means to Understand Musical Analysis» presented at the Annual Conference for the Society of European Philosophy and The Forum for European Philosophy, York St John University, York, UK. August 31 – September 3, 2011.
  • «Determining Value in Sense Impressions of Music and Interpretations» presented at the 34th International Wittgenstein Symposium «Epistemology: Contexts, Values, Disagreement», Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society, Kirchberg am Wechsel, Austria. August 7 – 13, 2011.
  • «Understanding a Musical Work: The Dialogue Between Listening and Textual Analysis» presented at the International Conference titled, «Music; Discourse; Power», Departamento de Estudos Românicos / Departamento de Música; Instituto de Letras e Ciências Humanas, Universidade do Minho. March 18, 2011.
  • «Kierkegaard and Beethoven: A Hearing-Based Model for an Aesthetics of Music versus Textual-Based Analysis» presented at the 2nd Annual Conference in Philosophy and Literature: Descrever Arte / Describing Art. Insituto de Filosofia e Linguagem, Universidade Nova de Lisboa. January 21, 2011.


Miguel Tamen

  • «Literature and Consequences». Actions and Reasons. Philosophy and Literature Network, Third Annual Colloquium.  Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Lisbon. January 2012)
  • «Surrounding Yourself With Art». Actions in Art. Philosophy and Literature Network.  Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Lisbon. March 2012)
  • «Fogo Posto [Arson]».  Assuntos Textuais. 5º Seminário Aberto do Projecto Estranhar Pessoa. ELAB- Philosophy and Literature Network.  Casa Fernando Pessoa (Lisbon. October 2012)
  • «Invisible Hands». Collective Life.  Philosophy and Literature Network, Fourth Annual Colloquium. Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Lisbon. January 2013)
  • «A caça à ovelha [The Hunting of the Sheep]». Portugal 800. Programa em Teoria da Literatura. Universidade de Lisboa (Lisbon. June 2013)
  • «António Nobre».  Museu da Música.  (Lisbon. January 2014)
  • «Sobre três fotografias [On Three Photographs]».  University of Lisbon. Program in Literary Theory. Philosophy and Literature Workshop. (Lisbon. February 2014)
  • «Invisible Hands».  University of Chicago.   Literature and Philosophy Workshop. (Chicago.  May 2014)
  • «Portugueses no estrangeiro [The Portuguese Abroad]». Peregrinaçam de Fernão Mendes Pinto (1614-2014).  Instituto de Língua e Cultura Portuguesa. Universidade de Lisboa. (Lisbon.  June 2014)
  • «A liberdade constrói-se? [Can Liberty Be Built?]»(panel member). À procura da Liberdade [The Quest for Liberty]. Presente no Futuro. Fundação Francisco Manuel dos Santos. (Lisbon.  October 2014)
  • «Poemas de cór [Poems By Heart]».  Museu da Música.  (Lisbon. January 2015)
  • «A parábola do filho pródigo [The Parable of the Prodigal Son]».  Universidade de Lisboa. Programa em Teoria da Literatura. (Lisbon. January 2015)


Alda Rodrigues

  • «Sobre o poema Interior (with Jane), de Frank O’Hara», Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura 2014-1015, FLUL, December 16, 2014
  • «O que as colecções nos mostram sobre os valores», Colóquio IFILNOVA, July 9, 2014
  • «Colecção e Inteligibilidade,» Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura 2014-1015, FLUL, March 11, 2014.
  • «People and Things», Royal Institute of Philosophy Annual Conference 2013: Philosophy and Museums: Ethics, Aesthetics and Ontology, Universidade de Glasgow, July 26, 2014.
  • «Acção e Colecção», Quarto Colóquio Anual da Rede de Filosofia e Literatura, IFILNOVA, January 21, 2013.
  • «The Collector at Home,» Relational Forms II Ex certa scientia: Literature, Science and the Arts – An International Conference, FLUP, December 14, 2012.
  • «The Collections in Éric Rohmer’s Moral Tales», NECS 2012 Conference, FCSH, JUne 21, 2014.
  • «Colecções», Teses da Teoria, FLUL, June 18, 2012.
  • «As Colecções do Conto Now I Lay Me, de Ernest Hemingway», Workshop de Filosofia e Literatura 2011-2012, IfilNova, February 23, 2012.