Monthly Archives: March 2017

Teaching Excellence in the department

Just a quick congratulatory note for the following staff who have been nominated by students for their contribution to teaching. Worth mentioning that Adam Potts has been nominated in two awards and for the second year running.

Thank you to the students for the nominations. It is very much appreciated.

Adam Potts
Outstanding Contribution to Innovation

Outstanding Contribution to Teaching – HASS Faculty

David Rose
Outstanding Contribution to Teaching – HASS Faculty

Michael Bavidge
Outstanding Contribution to Feedback

More Newcastle University Philosophy Activities for you

Some of the extra-curricular philosophy activities for you to enjoy over the next few weeks. All welcome from any discipline/service:

16:00, THURSDAY Mar 9th – Postgraduate Study Workshop. Philosophy Common
Nicholas Brignell (Newcastle Philosophy), Stephen Overy (Newcastle Philosophy)
This session builds on the session last semester about postgraduate study at Newcastle and considers
postgraduate opportunities elsewhere. Lead by Nicky, our postgrad in residence, supported by Stephen (not
long since a postgrad), we’ll consider what to look for in a programme, how to contact a departments, and how
to make an application for both a place on a course, and for funding.

16:00, THURSDAY Mar 16th – Another Film Screening – Slavoj Zizek’s Pervert’s Guide
to Cinema. ARM 1.49.
Stephen Overy (Newcastle Philosophy)
Feel free to bring that special someone (or a bag of popcorn) along to our screening of Zizek’s explication of
psychoanalysis through the medium of modern cinema.
It is a fun romp through the annals of cinema by pop Slovenian philosopher and prolific writer Slavoj Zizek, who finds deep
psychological meaning in a slew of movies. -New York Post
A virtuoso marriage of image and thought. -Variety
For information on these sessions, contact Dr Overy (

Dementia and the Body-Subject: The Margins of Agency in Philosophy and Literature (Public lecture, Newcastle University, 8 March 2017)

Dementia and the Body-Subject: The Margins of Agency in Philosophy and Literature (Public lecture, Newcastle University, 8 March 2017)

Posted on MARCH 3, 2017 by MDICLHUMANITIES
Dr Liz Barry (University of Warwick) will be the guest speaker in the School of English at Newcastle University, as part of the Visiting Speaker series. Her lecture will take place on Wednesday 8th March, 5-6:30pm in Room 1.19, Percy Building, Newcastle University, NE1 7RU.

Dr Barry’s paper will discuss the way in which phenomenological philosophy, and Merleau-Ponty in particular, has been martialled in sociological writing on dementia to argue for diametrically opposite positions on the personhood, autonomy and rights of the subject with dementia (see e.g. Davis 2004, Kontos 2005, Hughes et al 2006). Authors mount different arguments, and bring phenomenology to bear from their different perspectives, on how long the dementia patient remains a meaningful and autonomous subject at all, and, further, at what point the rights and needs of their carers, as agents purportedly more worthy of the name, start to outweigh their own.

This paper contends, as do the sociologists who use phenomenology (Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty) in this way, that the philosophy of embodiment and lived time has a lot to say in relation to both the concept of personhood in dementia and the lived experience of the dementia sufferer. But the radically divergent uses of this philosophy seem to point to a conceptual instability in current understanding of the subject with dementia, an instability that obviously opens the way to very different ethical stances. The paper will survey the uses of phenomenology made in the sociology of dementia, reconsider what phenomenology might have to offer (in relation to the patient’s experience of language, the body, memory and lived time, and how this bears on their construction as a subject), and investigate fiction and memoir as a source of knowledge about the lived experience of dementia.

Dementia and the Body-Subject: The Margins of Agency in Philosophy and Literature (Public lecture, Newcastle University, 8 March 2017)