The Primacy of Metaphysics

A Conference with Christopher Peacocke


In his new book The Primacy of Metaphysics (Oxford University Press, forthcoming), Christopher Peacocke argues for the view that, contrary to idealist, and anti-realist assumptions, the metaphysics of a given domain of objects is explanatorily more fundamental than our ways of thinking about it. We need to appeal to the nature of the objects in the domain, what is constitutive of them, in order to formulate a philosophical explanation of the intentional contents, and the meanings of the sentences through which we refer to, and talk about that domain. This requires to develop the metaphysics-first view differently for different domains, depending on the nature of the objects in question. In the book, Peacocke elaborates in details the way in which the metaphysics-first view is to be applied to the domain of spatial and temporal magnitudes, the domain of the self-conscious subjects of thought, and the domain of numbers. In conclusion, he shows how the metaphysics-first view helps explaining the difference between genuine and spurious concepts, thereby drawing the limits of intelligibility. The conference invites comments and responses to Peacocke’s arguments, and aims to provoke an in-depth discussion of the topics treated in book.


The conference papers will be circulated in advance, through a password protected folder. To receive the password (and also to register for the conference), please contact the organizers:



  • Bianca Ancillotti Universität Leipzig
  • Wolfgang Barz JWG-Universität Frankfurt
  • Katalin Farkas CEU Budapest
  • Kristina Musholt Universität Leipzig
  • Christopher Peacocke Columbia University New York
  • Sebastian Rödl Universität Leipzig
  • David Sosa UT Austin

Vortragssaal der Bibliotheca ALBERTINA
Beethovenstraße 6

June 24 & 25, 2019
Click for Program (PDF)