Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB)

Pär Segerdahl

Pär Segerdahl, foto: Gunilla Segerdahl

Pär Segerdahl
Senior Researcher
Associate Professor of Philosophy

Pär Segerdahl investigates notions of nature and animal in animal ethics, animal welfare and various eco-philosophies, as well as in contemporary culture more generally. He holds a PhD in theoretical philosophy from Uppsala University (1993). He was a guest researcher at the Centre for Gender Research at Uppsala University from 2007-2009. Pär Segerdahl became associate professor of theoretical philosophy at Åbo Akademi Univeristy in 1998 and Uppsala University in 2001. He currently develops new ideas for research on absolutism and relativism in the notion of morality. Pär Segerdahl is also involved in research communication for the BBMRI.se (Biobanking and Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure Sweden) and editor of the ethics blog and etikbloggen.

Pär Segerdahl is a member of Nordic Network for Philosophical Anthropology and The Nordic Wittgenstein Society.

E-mail: Par.Segerdahl@crb.uu.se
Phone: +46 18 471 61 72

PhD supervision:


International peer-reviewed articles:

Viberg J, Segerdahl P, Langenskiöld S, Hansson MG, Freedom of Choice About Incidental Findings Can Frustrate Participants' True Preferences, Bioethics, Article first published online: 23 APR 2015 DOI: 10.1111/bioe.12160

Segerdahl P, The rhetoric and prose of the human/animal contrast, Language & Communication 2015;42: 36-49.

Segerdahl P, Being Humans When We Are Animals, Nordic Wittgenstein Review, 2014;3 (No.2); 125-149.

Viberg J, Hansson MG, Langenskiöld S, Segerdahl P, Incidental findings: the time is not yet ripe for a policy for biobanks, European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 2014;22:437-441

Segerdahl P, Can Natural Behaviour be Cultivated? The Farm as Local Human/Animal Culture, Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics, 2007;20:167-193.

Eriksson S, Helgesson G, and Segerdahl P, Provide Expertise or Facilitate Ethical Reflection? On the Proper Role for Bioethics, Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy, 2006;9:389-392.

Savage-Rumbaugh S, Fields W, Segerdahl P, and Rumbaugh D, Culture Prefigures Cognition in Pan/Homo Bonobos, Theoria: An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science, 2005;54:311-328.

Segerdahl P, Is Language Something that We Learn?, Current Anthropology, 2001;42:503-504.

Segerdahl P, Scientific Studies of Aspects of Everyday Life. The Example of Conversation Analysis, Language & Communication, 1998;18:275-323.

Segerdahl P, Linguistic Theory and Actual Language, Language & Communication, 1995;15:31-42.

Segerdahl P, Critique of Pure Capacity. Searle and the Background. Philosophical Investigations, 1994;17:507-535.

International peer-reviewed monographs:

Segerdahl P, Fields W and Savage-Rumbaugh S, Kanzi’s Primal Language. The Cultural Initiation of Primates into Language. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005.

Segerdahl P, Language Use. A Philosophical Investigation into the Basic Notions of Pragmatics, Houndmills, Basingstoke: Macmillan / New York: St Martins, 1996.

Chapters in books distributed internationally:

Segerdahl P, Gender, Language and Philosophical Reconciliation: What Does Judith Butler Destabilize? In: Ethics and the Philosophy of Culture: Wittgensteinian Approaches. Gustafsson, Y., Kronqvist, C., and Nykänen, H. (Eds.). Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2013.

Pedersen J, Segerdahl P, and Fields WM, Why Apes Point: Indexical Pointing in Spontaneous Conversation of Language-Competent Pan/Homo Bonobos. In Potocki, E. and Krasiñski, J. (Eds.),  Primatology: Theories, Methods and Research, Nova Science Publishers, 2011.

Segerdahl P, Can Non-Human Animals have Cultural Notions of Sex? In: Holmberg, T. (Ed.). Investigating Human/Animal Relations in Science, Culture and Work. Skrifter från Centrum för genusvetenskap, Uppsala universitet, 2009.

Segerdahl P, Does Learning Language from Humans Make Apes less Animal? In: Segerdahl, P. (Ed.). Undisciplined Animals: Invitations to Animal Studies. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011.

Segerdahl P, Human-Enculturated Apes: Towards a New Synthesis of Philosophy and Comparative Psychology. In: Crossing Boundaries: Creating Knowledge about Ourselves with Other Animals. Birke, L. and Hockenhull, J. (Eds.). Brill, in press.

Segerdahl P, Gender, Language and Philosophical Reconciliation: What Does Judith Butler Destabilize?” Wittgensteinian Approaches to Ethics and the Philosophy of Culture. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, in press.

Segerdahl P, Humanizing Nonhumans: Ape Language Research as Critique of Metaphysics. Language, Ethics and Animal Life. Burley, M. Forsberg, N. & Hämäläinen, N. (Eds.). Continuum, in press.

Fields W, Segerdahl P, and Savage-Rumbaugh S, The Material Practices of Ape Language Reseach, in: Valsiner J (Ed.), Cambridge Handbook of Socio-Cultural Psychology, Cambridge University Press, 2007.

Savage-Rumbaugh ES, Segerdahl P, and Fields WM, Individual Differences in Language-Competencies in Apes Resulting From Unique Rearing Conditions Imposed by Different First Epistemplogies, in: Namy LL(Ed.), Symbolic Use and Symbolic Representation: Developmental and Comparative Perspectives, Lawrence Erlbaum, 2005.

Segerdahl P, Conversation Analysis as Rigorous Science. P. J. Thibault & C. Prevignano (Eds.), Discussing Conversation Analysis. The Work of Emanuel A. Schegloff. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2003, pp. 91-108.

Segerdahl P, Wittgenstein, Meursault and the Difficulty of Philosophy. M. Gustafsson & L. Hertzberg  (Eds), The Practice of Language, Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2002, pp 201-212.

Segerdahl P, Does Our Use of Indexicals Require Explanation? Philosophical Crumbs. R. Sliwinski (Ed.). Uppsala Philosophical Studies 1999;49:209-218.

Segerdahl P, (in press). The Difficulty of Acknowledging Our Primary Culture. Forsberg, N. & S. Jansson (Eds). Acknowledging Stanley Cavell. Uppsala: Uppsala Philosophical Studies.

Textbooks for students and chapters in textbooks:

Segerdahl, P. 2011. Varför filosoferar man? Filosofisk tidskrift 2011;1(11).

Segerdahl P, Förlåtelsens anda, i: Tankar tillägnade Sören Stenlund. Forsberg N, Rider S, and Segerdahl P (Eds.), Uppsala Philosophical Studies 2008;54:155-168.

Segerdahl P, Kan ett djur tala så att vi förstår? in: Franck O (ed.), Unga filosofer. Antologi för gymnasiet, Stockholm: Natur och Kultur, 2002.

Segerdahl P, Har filosofin fortfarande någon roll att spela?, Filosofisk tidskrift, 2001;01(2):72-86.

Segerdahl P, Angående ”språkfilosofins elände”, Filosofisk tidskrift, 1999;99(4):8-10.

Segerdahl, P, Varför exempel är intressanta i filosofin, Filosofisk tidskrift, 1999;99(4):5-16.

Segerdahl P, William James och vårt vanliga språk, in: Svensson H (ed.), Vidgade perspektiv. Meditationer över diverse filosofihistoriska ämnen, Uppsala Philosophical Studies 1998;47:153-162.

Segerdahl P, Språkteorier och språkspel. Lund: Studentlitteratur, 1998. (Textbook.)

Monographs and articles in Swedish:

Segerdahl P, Varför filosoferar man? [Why Does One Philosophize?] Filosofisk tidskrift 1, 2011.

Segerdahl P, Om svårigheten att kritiskt betrakta sina egna övertygelser, Filosofisk tidskrift, 1995;95(2):30-32.

Segerdahl P, Metafysik och språkkritik. Filosofisk tidskrift 1995;95(2):9-21.

Segerdahl P, Filosofins klarhet i ljuset av Wittgensteins dunkelhet, Filosofisk tidskrift, 1994:94(2):16-36.

Segerdahl P,Skenbar förståelse av filosofins skenbara mening, Finsk tidskrift, 1994;94(1).

Segerdahl P, Filosofi, vetenskap och språk, Filosofisk tidskrift, 1993;93(1):3-17.

Segerdahl P, Kritik av den rena förmågan: Searle och ”The Background”. (Våra begrepp om språk, VBOS 4). Institutionen för lingvistik, Uppsala universitet, 1989. (Monograph.)

Segerdahl P, Kritik av den logiska ordningen inom pragmatiken. (Våra begrepp om språk, VBOS 3). Institutionen för lingvistik, Uppsala universitet 1988. (Monograph.)

Edited volumes:

Segerdahl P (Ed.), Undisciplined Animals: Invitations to Animal Studies. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011.

Forsberg N, Rider S, and Segerdahl P, Tankar tillägnade Sören Stenlund, Uppsala Philosophical Studies 54, 2008.

Popular science:

Segerdahl P, Thinking about ethics - A collection of reflections from the Ethics Blog, Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB), ISBN: 978-91-506-2433-5, 2014

Segerdahl P, Tänker om etik - En samling reflektioner från Etikbloggen, Centrum för forsknings- & bioetik (CRB), ISBN: 978-91-506-2434-2, 2014

Segerdahl P, Djuren i kulturen, Daidalos, Göteborg, 2009. ISBN: 978-91-7173-303-0

Segerdahl P, Har den vetenskapliga specialiseringen nått vägs ände? Ikaros 2007.

Segerdahl P, Kan ett djur tala så att vi förstår det? Språkets gränser och gränslöshet. Humanistdagarna 2001. Uppsala universitet.

Segerdahl P, Kulturen är evolutionens turbomotor. Streckare i SvD 16 december 2001.

Segerdahl P, Miljön som lär apor tala och skriva. Streckare i SvD 30 september 2001.

Segerdahl P, Är djuren bara djur? Djurens rätt 3/2007: 18-19 2007.

Segerdahl P, Ädelmodiga djur och människans bestialiska natur. Streckare i SvD 16 december 2006.

Segerdahl P, Djuren vantrivs i naturen. Streckare i SvD 10 januari 2005.

Segerdahl P, Evolutionsläran som fostrare av tanken. Streckare i SvD 29 augusti 2003.

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Meet an editor: Pär Segerdahl

Regulating biobank research: new book

[2015-01-13] Biobank research and genomic information are changing the way we look at health and medicine. So how can we regulate it? A recent book published by Springer shows us how the regulatory systems work and raises a critical voice.

Deborah MascalzoniJennifer Viberg, Mats G. Hansson, Sophie Langenskiöld and Pär Segerdahl have contributed with a chapter in Ethics, Law and Governance of Biobanking that was recently published by Springer.

New book thinks about ethics

[2014-12-16] Why would a cancer patient agree to test a drug that might not be effective on their own disease? And are researchers responsible if their research can be used to develop biological weapons? A new book provides some food for thought.

Pär SegerdahlJust the other day, Pär Segerdahl published a book called Thinking about ethics with a collection of texts and reflections from the Ethics Blog. The texts might not provide the answers to all the questions posed above, but they should at least give you some ideas.


BBMRI.se (Biobanking and Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure)

What is natural behaviour in a domestic animal? Philosophical analysis of a central concept in organic agriculture

Kanzi’s Primal Language. The Cultural Initiation of Primates into Language


The Ethics Blog



Centre for Gender Research