Mar 4, 2018

New Milwaukee Chapter of SOPHIA - And Our First Event!

Milwaukee now has a local chapter of SOPHIA!  This is a national organization devoted to bringing philosophy out of the academy and back into the public sphere.

For those of you in the area, we'd love for you to join us at our first event for the general public - Where Do Justice and Kindness Meet?

We will be meeting in the Community Room of the Milwaukee Public Library - Central Branch.  The event begins at 1:30 PM, and runs until about 4:00 PM on Saturday, March 17.  To sign up for this event, to learn more, or to join our local SOPHIA chapter, go to our Meetup page.

The first hour of the session will be a facilitated discussion - led by Andi Sciacca, Kreigh Knerr, and Greg Sadler - engaging the community on questions about justice, community, and kindness. What do people think justice is? Why are there so many conflicts about justice? What is needed beyond justice? These are just the starting points for our community discussion. We'll also look very briefly at one moral perspective (Stoicism) that construes kindness as an integral part of justice.

After a short break, we will have a second discussion  focused on some key ideas from Cicero's work of Stoic Ethics, On Duties. We will go further into the interplay between kindness and justice, discuss what we owe those outside our community, and look at justice's connections with the other three main virtues recognized by the Stoics - wisdom, courage, and moderation.  This more in-depth session will be led by Greg Sadler.

No previous background, study, or reading in philosophy is required for the first hour - just an interest in participating in these discussions vital to our Milwaukee community.  For the second hour, it is recommended that participants read book 1 of Cicero's work, On Duties (we'll be referencing the Miller translation).

The Society of Philosophers in America (SOPHIA) is an educational nonprofit membership and chapter organization dedicated to building communities of philosophical conversation. We are made up of people from within and beyond the academy, people who are interested in deep, meaningful dialogue, and who aim to enrich public discourse and civility.  This particular event is co-sponsored by the MKE Stoic Fellowship - a local meetup for people interested in Stoic philosophy and practice.

We are already engaged in planning two other events scheduled later in the year.  Our second event - in August - will be a set of workshops and discussions for local high school teachers and students, helping them build robust study of philosophy into their English and History classes.  Our third - in November - will take place on UNESCO World Philosophy Day.

So mark the date, and show up eager to engage in some philosophical discussion - or even just to listen, reflect, and learn - we're happy to have you participate either way!