Political Theology: The Border in Question
March 1, 2007 (1:00 - 5:00) - Knight Library Browsing Room
Opening Remarks (Jeffrey S. Librett)
Political Theology in Modernist and Contemporary Theory
Moderator: Kenneth Calhoon (German and Comparative Literature, Univ. of Oregon)
- 1:00 - Kenneth Reinhard (English and Comparative Literature, UCLA)
Title: Paul and the Political Theology of the Neighbor
- 2:45 - Tracy McNulty (Romance Languages, Cornell University)
Title: The Exception become the Rule: The Legacy of Paul in Schmitt's Political Theology
- 4:00 - Joshua Gold (Johns Hopkins University)
Title: The Dwarf in the Machine: Sources of a Theological Figure.
March 2, 2007 (9:00 - 6:00) - Knight Library Browsing Room
Political Theology and Early Modernity
(9:00am - 12:00)
Moderator: Linda Kintz (English, University of Oregon)
- 9:15 - Julia Lupton (English, UC Irvine)
Title: Schmitt and Shakespeare
- 10:30 - Leonard Feldman (Political Science, University of Oregon)
Title: Schmitt, Locke and Boundaries of Liberalism
LUNCH BREAK (12:00 - 1:30)
Political Theology and East-West Cultural Connections
(1:30 - 5:30)
Moderator: Susan C. Anderson (German and Scandinavian [Head], University of Oregon)
- 1:30 - Jeffrey S. Librett (German and Scandinavian, University of Oregon)
Title: Orientalism and Political Theology in Schopenhauer
- 2:45 - Ulker Gokberk (Reed College, German [Chair])
Title: Beyond Secularism: Mysticism and Political Islam in the Borderland
- 4:00 - Coffee Break
- 4:30 - Claudia Breger (Indiana University, German)
Title: Religious Turns: The Turkish- German Cultural Politics in the 21st Century
- 6:00 - Close
Between Nature and Culture: After the Continental-Analytic Divide.
Thursday, Friday, May 1-2
The second colloquium will reconsider the question of nature and culture in connection with the debate (or polemically motivated indifference) that reigns between continental and analytic philosophy in this country and largely also abroad. The colloquium is called “Between Nature and Culture: Edging Beyond the Continental-Analytic Divide.” We will examine the largely untraversed, quasi-taboo, and generally unthought borderline between the analytic and continental philosophical traditions. In order to test our working hypothesis that these two traditions are divided largely by the fact that they take different approaches to the borderline between nature and culture, and specifically to the question of the natural or artificial character of language, we are inviting thinkers from these two traditions to address the nature/culture divide. Since the entire creation of an analytic philosophical tradition occurs in conjunction with a transfer of Viennese philosophy (Carnap, Frege, Wittgenstein) into the English context—a Germanization or Austrianization of English philosophy or an Anglicization of German-Austrian philosophy—the question of the relation between the analytic and continental traditions is something like that of the relation beween the German-Austrian and English traditions. If, as is commonly argued, the analytic tradition arises out of a rejection of idealism (and this is German Idealism beginning with Kant's "transcendental idealism"), then its origin is tied to the rejection of a specific concept of nature as well, namely the Idealist concept of nature. And of course, Idealism is nothing if not a specific kind of definition of nature, an ontology spelled out in terms of the relative independence of spirit from nature, and so on. . . In light of this brief philosophico-historical reminiscence, we can see how the difference between the continental and analytic traditions is tied to a difference over the concept of nature, and specifically a concept intimately bound up with the German philosophical tradition from the late eighteenth century until the twentieth. This is what the colloquium will explore, focusing partly on figures in German and English philosophy (especially Kant and Wittgenstein), partly on strictly conceptual issues
May 1-2, 2008
Thursday, May 1, 2008
(Walnut Room, in EMU)
9:00-10:00 Andrew Cutrofello (Loyola University Chicago)
“What is One-Dimensional Philosophy?”
10:00-11:00 Paul M. Livingston (Villanova University)
“The Breath of Sense: Language, Structure, and the Paradox of Origin”
11:45-1:15 Lunch Break
From Nature to Language
1:15-2:15 Dominiek Hoens (Leiden University)
“On Language from a Lacanian Point of View”
2:15-3:15 Beata Stawarska (University of Oregon)
4:00-4:15 Coffee Break
4:15-5:15 Martin Klebes (University of Oregon)
"Two Round-trip Tickets to Literature (L. Wittgenstein, D. Lewis)"
5:15-6:15 Russell Goodman (University of New Mexico)
“Wittgenstein on Nature and Culture”
Friday, May 2, 2008
(McKenzie Hall 240 A)
Music and Listening
9:00-10:00 Scott Pratt (University of Oregon)
10:00-11:00 Lawrence Kramer (Fordham University)
"Listening Devices: Musical Expression as Performance"
Gender Between Construct and Essence
1:15-2:15 Bonnie Mann (University of Oregon)
“What Should Feminists Do About Nature?”
2:15-3:15 Sharyn Clough (Oregon State University) "Gender and germs: 'Cultural'
impacts on 'natural' bodies."
4:00 Closing Remarks
Borderlines in Psychoanalysis, Borderlines of Psychoanalysis
When: Thursday, April 30, 2009 and Friday, May 1, 2009
Where: University of Oregon--Eugene, Oregon
Browsing Room, Knight Library
Sponsored by the German Studies Committee, with support of the Department of German and Scandinavian, the Department of Philosophy, the Department of English, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Oregon Humanities Center, the Department of Romance Languages, and the Comparative Literature Program.
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Jeffrey S. Librett,
University of Oregon
University of Oregon
"Narcissism and the Sublime"
Juliet F. MacCannell,
University of California, Irvine
Jeffrey S. Librett,
University of Oregon
"Splitting Headaches: On the
Borderline Between the
Borderline and the Narcissistic
Samuel Weber, Northwestern University
"The Uncanny Inner Border of Psychoanalysis: Between Anxiety and Desire"
Friday, May 1, 2009
Stefanie Speanburg, Emory University
"Fine Lines: Subjectivity, Self-inscription, and Borderline Discourse"
The Question of the Limit in Psychoanalysis Today
Willy Apollon, Freud School of Quebec, GIFRIC
"The Limit: a Fundamental Question for the Subject in Human Experience"
Danielle Bergeron, Freud School of Quebec, GIFRIC
“The Frontiers Between Autism and Psychosis"
Lucie Cantin, Freud School of Quebec, GIFRIC
"Charcot's Hysteric and Today's Borderline: from the Failure to the
Impossibility of Imagining the Other's Object"
Click here to see a poster for this conference.
Abstraction and Materiality in the Arts, Literature and Music
Click here to see a poster for this conference.
The reasoning behind this colloquium highlighting Kierkegaard’s relationship to thought from the German-speaking world is twofold. First we would like to explore the ramifications of the rejection of metaphysical explanations of the world in mid
Nineteenth-century Europe. Secondly, we intend to initiate a discussion about the desire to create a philosophical praxis that engages with both earthly existential conditions and the persistence of spiritual yearning. We believe that the philosophy of the Danish philosopher, Søren Kierkegaard informs us of the critical tensions between the nihilistic tendencies in European modernity and the belief that it is still possible to have a relationship with spirit in a manner that does not focus on that which lies beyond human experience. In this way Kierkegaard’s writings allow us a Janus-like perspective, as they look back towards the limits of idealist thought and forwards in anticipation of the late Twentieth-century and post-structuralism’s analysis of the possibility of belief in a pluralistic world. This Janus-faced aspect of Kierkegaard’s thought has led to a swelling wave of interest in his writings in recent years. While Kierkegaard has long been regarded as “the father of existentialism,” an apostle of the subjective nature of truth, and as a radical religious thinker, the latest research is quite concerned with Kierkegaard’s contributions to the development of psychoanalytic thought, political theology, social criticism, and post-modernism/post-structuralism.
The importance of Kierkegaard’s relationship to German thought comes to light when we remember two aspects of European intellectual history, namely that Kierkegaard cut his teeth as a philosopher reading the German Idealists and Romantics, and that the early theorists of Western Marxism and postwar Existentialism read the first translations of Kierkegaard’s work as young men in the early years of the twentieth century.
A colloquium about Kierkegaard’s relationship to and interest in German philosophy allows us to explore both the ramifications of Idealism and Romanticism and the varieties of thought that emerge from the rebellion against Hegelian philosophy in the middle years of the Nineteenth-century. It is important to remember how compelling Hegelian thought was during this period, not the least because of his analysis of modernity as being synonymous with Christian Europe. Kierkegaard was part of the generation of thinkers who rebelled against Hegel’s dominance and his rejection of this German thinker dovetailed with a critique of modernity and Christianity. The importance and the extent of this critique can be elicited from the following example: shortly after completing his dissertation, and dissatisfied with the dominance of Hegelian philosophy in Denmark, Kierkegaard attended the 1841 lectures by F.W.J. Schelling, who after Hegel’s death occupied his chair of philosophy in Berlin. Among other luminaries, Friedrich Engels and Mikhail Bakunin also sat in attendance. It has been argued that these lectures marked a turning point in 19th century philosophy, not because the audience bought Schelling’s argument, but rather that two strains of thought both concerned with “existence” as opposed to abstraction emerged. Historians of philosophy trace the origins of existential thought through Kierkegaard’s response to his disappointment with Schelling, and they also understand these lectures to be a seminal moment in the emergence of Marxist discourse. Our example allows us to ascertain how Kierkegaard’s philosophy can be used as a heuristic instrument to probe the history of modern continental philosophical movements both prior to 1841 and after. We need only look to the extensions of thought of the auditors attending Schelling’s lectures to understand that any discussion of Kierkegaard and German Thought can be expanded to include both the emergence of existential philosophy and the development of western Marxism as well as post-Marxist thought. For it is no coincidence that the early theorists of Western Marxism, namely Georg Lukács, Theodor Adorno, and the like read Kierkegaard as young men. Modern existentialists such as Heidegger, Jaspers, Sartre, and Camus also were devoted readers of the Dane. Considering the variety of thinkers that Kierkegaard read and who read Kierkegaard, it is easy to see that there is significance beyond name-dropping here. We believe that the subject matter of our colloquium enables a discussion about the movement away from metaphysical explanations of the world on one hand and the persistence of religious discourse in European modernity on the other hand. It does not require much of a leap of faith to believe that the collision between secular and religious explanations of the world provides ideological fuel for much of the conflict that we experience in the world today.
Click here to download the flyer for this event.