The James Bradley Lectureship




"What is usually termed ‘speculative metaphysics’ characteristically defends a strong theory of existence. The differences between strong and weak theories of existence are so fundamental to any views we may have of the nature of reality that the debates between them are the driving force of Western philosophy. Indeed, these debates are at the center of the conflicts and oppositions, the arguments and alternatives, which characterize not only Western philosophy but Western culture as a whole."
-Professor James Bradley


The James Bradley Annual Lectureship in Speculative Philosophy explores and develops those philosophical questions and theories that the late Canadian philosopher and former chair of our Philosophy Department, James Bradley, described as “speculative.” Professor Bradley insisted that metaphysical questions concerning the nature of reality underlay many of the debates at the heart of not only academic philosophy but much of Western politics and culture. Metaphysics, in this view, is deeply relevant. Indeed, according to Professor Bradley we can scarcely understand the daily news without some understanding of metaphysics.

Past Bradley Lecturers


  • Prof. Danielle Layne (Gonzaga University) ""Plato and Divination: Why Reason without the Divine is not Philosophy"


  • Prof. Brad Inwood (Yale University) "Varieties of Stoicism: the Strange Case of Marcus Aurelius."


  • Prof. Douglas Hedley (University of Cambridge) "The Cambridge Platonists and the Idealistic Vision of Nature."


  • Dr. Douglas Anderson (University of North Texas) "Peirce's Lost Community of Firstness."


  • Dr. Frank Peddle (Dominican University College) "Hegel on Triadicity, its Sublation and the Platonic Theology of Proclus"


  • Dr. Francoise Dastur (U de Nice) "The Phenomenological Question of the Relation to the Other: Love, Seduction, and Care"
  • Dr. Maeve Cook (UC Dublin) "Rethinking Autonomy: Feminism and Beyond"


  • Dr. Peter Harris (Memorial University) "Creative Order: The Case for Speculative Metaphysics"
  • Dr. Guenter Zoeller (University of Munich) "Church and State: Schelling’s Political Philosophy of Religion"
  • Dr. Jeffrey Reid (University of Ottawa) "The Hobbesian Ethic of Hegel’s Sense-Certainty"
  • Daniel Smith (Purdue University) "Time, Truth, and Thought"
  • Philip Rose (University of Windsor) "Another Guess at the Riddle: More Ado About Nothing"
  • Brian Henning (Gonzaga University) "Metaphysics: To Live out of Doors"
  • Uwe Voigt (University of Augsburg) "Proposing Propositions"


If you would like to read a bit more about Professor Bradley, you can read his obituary here.