Necessary Beings: A Conference in Memory of Bob Hale

Necessary Beings: A Conference in Memory of Bob Hale
15 October 2018, 9.30am - 16 October 2018, 6.00pm
Conference / Symposium
Room 349, Third Floor, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU


Bob Hale was one of the most distinguished philosophers of logic, mathematics and metaphysics of his generation. His philosophical work was of enormous importance and influence. In particular, he published three major books: Abstract Objects (Blackwells 1987), The Reason's Proper Study: Essays Towards a Neo-Fregean Philosophy of Mathematics (OUP 2001, jointly written with Crispin Wright) and Necessary Beings: An Essay on Ontology, Modality, and The Relations Between Them (Oxford 2013). These works – along with his many journal articles, book chapters, and edited works – made a significant contribution, amongst other things, to our understanding of the nature of and our knowledge of mathematical objects, to the development of essentialist theories of modality, and to modal epistemology. In addition to his great philosophical talent, Bob was also a highly-valued colleague, collaborator, teacher, and mentor to many philosophers.


The philosophical community - and in particular his friends, students and colleagues - were greatly shocked and saddened by Bob's death in December 2017. We plan to gather together to share in our loss, and to celebrate his life and philosophy, in a conference on the major themes of his work.



Roy T. Cook

University of Minnesota

Philip A. Ebert

University of Stirling

Ivette Fred-Rivera

University of Puerto Rico

Jessica Leech

King's College London

Øystein Linnebo

University of Oslo

Penelope Mackie

Nottingham University

Antonella Mallozzi

Providence College

Julien Murzi

University of Salzburg

Sam Royston Roberts

University of Oslo

Sonia Roca-Royes

University of Stirling

Marcus Rossberg

University of Connecticut

Ian Rumfitt

Oxford University

Richard Samuels

Ohio State University

Stewart Shapiro

Ohio State University

Eric Snyder

Ohio State University

Anand Vaidya

San Jose State University

Michael Wallner

University of Graz

Crispin Wright

University of Stirling


Corine Besson

University of Sussex/School of Advanced Study, University of London

Ivette Fred-Rivera

University of Puerto Rico

Jessica Leech

King's College London

Stewart Shapiro

Ohio State University

Barry C. Smith

School of Advanced Study, University of London

Richard Somerville

School of Advanced Study, University of London

Crispin Wright

University of Stirling




9.30 – 9.45      Welcome

9.45- 11.00      Crispin Wright (Stirling & NYU) - Hale and Heck on Higher-Order Logic.

11.00-11.30     Coffee

11.30-12.45     Julien Murzi (Salzburg) - 'Truth and paradox in context'

12.45-14.00     Lunch

14.00-15.15     Penelope Mackie (Nottingham) - 'Essentialist Theories of Modality' 

15.15-15.45     Tea break

15.45-17.45     Symposium 1: Philosophy of Mathematics

Philip Ebert (Stirling) - Hale's Ontology

Øystein Linnebo (Oslo) - Generic Generality and Ferge's Therom. 

Marcus Rossberg (Connecticut) - A natural deduction system for Hale’s Second-Order Logic

Sam Royston Roberts (Oslo) - Hale on Properties: definability, predictivity, and full comprehension.

Ian Rumfitt. (Oxford) - Recarving revisited    

18.00-20.00     Conference dinner



10.00-11.15     Roy Cook (Minnesota) - 'The Logic Of Opposite Day'

11.15-11.45     Coffee

11.45-13.00     Ivette Fred-Rivera (Puerto Rico) - 'Hale on Priori Knowledge'

13.00-14.15     Lunch

14.15-16.15    Symposium 2: Modality

Jessica Leech (KCL) Logical Essence

Anand Vaidya (SJSU) and Michael Wallner (Graz)Hitting Bedrock? Essences as Basic Necessities

           Antonella Mallozzi (Providence College) - Modal Pluralism and Modal Knowledge

           Sonia Roca Royes. (Stirling) - The Structure of Modal Knowledge: Symmetry and Uniformity.

16.15-16.45     Tea break

16.45-18.00     Stewart Shapiro (OSU) and Richard Samuels (OSU) 'Abstractionist neo-logicism and transitive counting' (co-authored with Eric Snyder)



King's College London

The Mind Association

Birkbeck College, London

The Institute of Philosophy, School of Advanced Study, London


Institute of Philsophy
020 7664 4865