John Locke Lectures

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The John Locke Lectures are a series of annual lectures in philosophy given at the University of Oxford. They are one of the world's most prestigious academic lecture series, comparable to the Gifford Lectures given in Scottish universities. They were established in 1950 by the bequest of Henry Wilde.

The first lecture series was offered to Ludwig Wittgenstein, who eventually declined. According to his biographers[citation needed], he felt uncomfortable giving formal lectures where the audience would not be asking or answering questions.


The lectures began as an uncertain biannual series, with the first lecturer from 1950–1951, and missing the second slot from 1952-1953. Between 1969 and 2001, the lectures became gradually more frequent. Since 2001, the lecture notes have been made available electronically.

Year Lecturer Lectures published as
1950–1951 Oets Kolk Bouwsma
1954–1955 Hao Wang
1955–1956 Arthur Prior Time and Modality (1957)
1957–1958 A. C. Jackson
1959–1960 Gregory Vlastos
1961–1962 Nelson Goodman
1963–1964 Jaakko Hintikka
1965–1966 Wilfrid Sellars Science and Metaphysics
1967–1968 Paul Lorenzen
1968–1969 Noam Chomsky
1969–1970 Donald Davidson On the Very Idea of a Conceptual Scheme
1971–1972 Sydney Shoemaker
1973–1974 Saul Kripke Reference and Existence
1974–1975 Richard Brandt
1975–1976 Hilary Putnam
1976–1977 no lectures
1977–1978 no lectures
1978–1979 Paul Grice Aspects of Reason
1979–1980 David Kaplan[1]
1980–1981 no lectures
1981–1982 no lectures
1982–1983 Daniel Dennett Elbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting
1983–1984 David Lewis
1984–1985 no lectures
1985–1986 no lectures
1986–1987 Barry Stroud The Quest for Reality (2000)
1987–1988 no lectures
1988–1989 no lectures[2]
1989–1990 Thomas Nagel Equality and Partiality
1990–1991 John McDowell Mind and World
Year Lecturer Lectures published as
1991–1992 Jonathan Bennett
1992–1993 Tyler Burge
1993–1994 no lectures
1994–1995 Frank Jackson From Metaphysics to Ethics
1995–1996 no lectures
1996–1997 Jerry Fodor Concepts:Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong
1996–1997 Robert Nozick Invariances (2001)
1997–1998 Lawrence Sklar
1998–1999 no lectures
1999–2000 no lectures
2000–2001 Bas van Fraassen
2001–2002 Christine Korsgaard Self-Constitution: Agency, Identity, Integrity (2009)
2002–2003 Kit Fine Semantic Relationism (2007)
2003–2004 Jonathan Barnes Truth, etc. (2007)
2004–2005 Ernest Sosa A Virtue Epistemology: Apt Belief and Reflective Knowledge, Volume 1 (2007)
2005–2006 Robert Brandom Between Saying and Doing (2008)
2006–2007 Robert Stalnaker Our Knowledge of the Internal World (2008)
2007–2008 Hartry Field
2008–2009 Thomas M. Scanlon Being Realistic about Reasons (2013)
2009–2010 David Chalmers Constructing the World (2012)
2010–2011 John Cooper[3] Ancient Greek Philosophies as a Way of Life
2012 Stephen Yablo
2013 Ned Block
2014 Martha Nussbaum Anger and Forgiveness (2016)
2015 Rae Langton
2016 Ted Sider
2017 Michael Smith


  1. ^ Postponed.
  2. ^ Ernst Tugendhat was due to deliver the lectures, but withdrew due to illness.
  3. ^ "John Cooper's Profile at Princeton". Retrieved 2012-01-03. 

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