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Radical Democracy and UtopiaCall for Papers

International Conference
University of Paris Diderot
Paris, France

April 16 & 17, 2015

Organized by LCSP (L’archipel des devenir – Centre de recherche sur les utopies) in collaboration with York University (Toronto, Canada) and the Centre de Théorie Politique (ULB, Belgium).

Throughout the conference, we wish to remain attentive to the concrete manifestations of utopia and radical democracy “in action”, to the experiences themselves, to the possibilities and the experimentation of communities as well as to their theoretical constructions and justifications. To paraphrase Derrida, would it not be necessary to think together two different emancipatory promises, – utopian and democratic -, which rally our capacity to search for intersections in their respective paths and to establish mutual sharing within the very moment of their divergence? For example, could radical democracy articulate an egalitarian critique of the utopian tendencies toward planning, hierarchy, and technocracy? Could utopia bring an innovating boldness to the possible forms of organization of radical democracy that run the risk of betraying its intentions?

By critically engaging the debate through the specific forces of each concept, as well as their reciprocal tensions, we hope that the conference will serve to expand the frontiers of each and understand more audaciously a form of politics that is dissensual, creative, egalitarian, and radical.

Scholars who would like to participate in the conference must send a title and an abstract of their paper to the contacts listed below by October 15, 2014. Selected participants will be informed in December 2014.

Papers can be given in English or in French.

The organizers regret that they are unable to provide funding for travel or accommodation.

Attendance to the conference is free and open to all. A full program will be published in February 2015.


Please send proposals to :

Étienne Tassin, University of Paris Diderot :
Martin Breaugh, York University :
Yohan Dubigeon, IEP Paris :


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