The Dorothy Emmet Lectures

Read about our annual public lecture series, the Dorothy Emmet Lectures.

Dorothy Emmet
Dorothy Emmet, 1996, copyright Hugh Mellor

We started the Dorothy Emmet Lectures in 2016. Emmet was lecturer, reader and then Samuel Hall Professor of Philosophy at Manchester from 1938 until her retirement in the mid-1960s, and was Head of Department for over twenty years. She died at the age of 95 in 2000.

Past Dorothy Emmet Lectures

2021: Prof. Miranda Fricker (CUNY Graduate Center): 'How is Forgiveness a Gift?' Watch the lecture (with subtitles)

2020: Prof. Jane Heal (Cambridge): 'On Underestimating "Us"'

2019: Dr. Clare Chambers (Cambridge): 'Against Marriage'

2018: Prof. Marya Schecthman (University of Illinois at Chicago): 'The Way We Were: How Memories Make Us Who (and What) We Are'

2017:Prof. Sherri Irvin (Oklahoma), 'Resisting Body Oppression: An Aesthetic Approach'

2016: Prof. Catherine Elgin (Harvard), 'Nature's Handmaiden: Art' 

More about Dorothy Emmet

Dorothy Emmet (1904-2000) was born in London and studied Classics and Philosophy at Oxford. Her first teaching experience came when, in 1926, she joined the Maesynhaf settlement in the Rhondda valley and taught Plato's Republic to unemployed Welsh miners. She then moved to the USA to study at Radcliffe College in Cambridge, Massachusetts with Alfred North Whitehead, who had recently become a philosophy professor at Harvard. On returning to England, Emmet continued her connection with Whitehead, teaching on his work as a research fellow at Oxford and publishing Whitehead's Philosophy of Organism in 1932. After six years as a lecturer in Newcastle, she moved to The University of Manchester in 1938, where she remained until she retired in 1966. She spent her retirement in Cambridge until her death in 2000. (Thanks to Leemon McHenry for his short philosophical biography of Emmet, from which this is paraphrased.)