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Pacific Study Group

About the Study Group

The Pacific Study Group (PSG) of the North American Kant Society is an informal group that meets once per year, typically in late winter, to facilitate interaction among students and scholars of Kant. The PSG typically features five or six presentations, one of which is usually from a graduate student. The PSG was founded by Eric Watkins in 2002 and its first meeting was hosted at the University of California at San Diego. The PSG has met every year thereafter at universities up and down the west coast (and online during the pandemic) and has featured many influential papers.


Dai Heide, Regional Chair

Upcoming Meeting

The Department of Philosophy at the University of California, Riverside will be hosting the Pacific Study Group of NAKS. Saturday and Sunday, February 11-12, 2023. The program is listed below. Complete details will be posted on the PSG website by mid-January ( The room on the UCR campus will be Humanities and Social Science (HMSS) 1500 – details and maps to be posted on the PSG website.


We will be hosting a conference meal Saturday evening, February 11, for everyone who RSVP’s. There is no registration fee, but please RSVP to Andrews Reath ( by January 31 so that we have a headcount.



Sat Feb 11

1-2:30pm                      Rachel Zuckert, “Kant's Philosophy of History as Response to Existential Despair

2:45-4:15pm               Melissa Merritt, “Kant's Critical Rehabilitation of the Stoic Concept of Nature”

4:30-6pm                      Karl Ameriks, “Philosophy, Politics, and Thomas Mann's Elliptical Path Back to Kant”


Sun Feb 12

9-10:30am                       Janelle DeWitt, “Humanity, Holiness, and the Highest Good”

10:45am-12:15pm Ian Blecher, “Kant's Postulate that God Exists”

12:30-2pm                       Conrad Damstra (Graduate student, Brown), “The Propensity to Evil as the Evil Fundamental Maxim”



Additional details

  • Since there is an event in Riverside that weekend, we recommend making hotel reservations a month in advance.  Speakers will be staying at the Courtyard by Marriott, 1510 University Avenue, Riverside CA 92507. Rates are c. $150/night with tax. (951-276-1200). Another option is Dynasty Suites, 3735 Iowa Avenue, Riverside, CA 92507. Rates are c. $100/night with tax (951-369-8200). A list of local hotels will be posted on the PSG website  by January. Be sure to request the UCR rate when you reserve.
  • For those travelling from out of state, Ontario CA is the airport closest to Riverside (c. 30 minutes vs. 75 minutes from LAX).
  • Parking available in UCR Lot 1. More detail on the PSG website or here
  • Click here for a map showing the route from the parking lot to the meeting room.

About us

The North American Kant Society (NAKS) was founded in 1985 at the Sixth International Kant Congress to further the study of Kantian thought and scholarship within a variety of traditions and disciplines.

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