TCD Philosopher Wins International Berkeley Essay Prize

Trinity College lecturer in Philosophy, Dr Stefan Storrie, recently won the prestigious Turbayne International Berkeley Prize competition organised by the University of Rochester in the US for his essay ‘Berkeley’s apparent Cartesiansim in De Motu’.  The annual international prize recognises the best essay on any aspect of Irish philosopher George Berkeley’s philosophy. 

George Berkeley (1685-1753), Trinity alumnus and one of the most prolific and influential scholars of the 18th Century, is best known for his early works on vision (An Essay towards a New Theory of Vision, 1709), and metaphysics (A Treatise concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge, 1710; Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous, 1713). 

The international Berkeley Essay prize, established by Professor Colin Turbayne and his wife in cooperation with the Philosophy Department at the University of Rochester in 1990, aims to advance the understanding of Berkeley’s work.  Dr Storrie’s award marks the first time since the inception of the competition that the prize has been awarded to a scholar outside of North America.  The winner of the competition receives a cash prize and copies of the winning essay are sent to the George Berkeley Library Study Centre located in Berkeley’s home in Whitehall, Newport, Rhode Island.   

A list of past prize winners can be viewed online.

Dr Stefan Storrie.

The Department of philosophy at Trinity College is one of four constituent departments of the School of Social Science and Philosophy.  The Chair of Moral Philosophy was established in 1837, but philosophy has been an important part of the Trinity College curriculum since its foundation in 1592.  Aside from George Berkeley, another notable philosopher to have been associated with Trinity was Edmund Burke (1729-1797).