Want to meet others with an interest in philosophy? Philsoc might be for you
As part of the job I did until 2021 I was President of the OUDCE Philosophical Society (Philsoc). This is a huge privilege. Members are enthusiastically committed to philosophy and, though most can only study around the edges of their job, they can become very good at it. Here is what they say about themselves:
“The Philosophical Society is a community of enthusiastic amateur philosophers. The Society was founded in 1973 by Dr Tony Chadwick, Staff Tutor in Philosophy at the Oxford University Department for External Studies, the predecessor of OUDCE. It has over 356 members, a number of them from outside the UK.”
The purpose of Philsoc is to advise and encourage anyone who has an interest in philosophy, and to help students who attend classes in philosophy organised by OUDCE. To this end it engages in many activities.
Philsoc holds regular meetings at Rewley House, it produces an annual review, it holds an annual ‘awayday’ in leafy Buckinghamshire, and it holds an annual Members’ Weekend, including a Members’ Dinner. Members have been known to come from places as far away as Chicago to deliver a paper at the members weekend (that’s you, Terry Duchow!)!
Since Philsoc began we have been recording the weekend schools we hold at OUDCE. We now have quite a collection, including talks by some very major philosophers. Only members can get at our archive. But these recordings are a fantastic resource. It is worth joining the society just for these (in my opinion).
If you are based outside the UK and think Philsoc is not for you, think again. We have many overseas members, and a committee member (Christian Michel) devoted to them.
Every year Philsoc publishes its The OUDCE Philosophical Society review This is a glossy journal of which I, as President, am very proud. All members can submit articles, and I know many are tickled pink to see their name in print above a philosophy article they have written.
The Philosophical Society also runs prizes. Anyone who attends a philosophy class – online or face-to-face – at OUDCE can enter the Philsoc Student prize. The most prestigious Prize is The Chadwick Prize. If you win that you get £150 and a free philosophy weekend!