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ONTOLOGY AND POLITICS

 

MANCHESTER WORKSHOPS IN POLITICAL THEORY 2011: August 31st – September 2nd 2011

Call for Papers: Ontology and Politics Workshop

Convenors: Paul Rekret (Queen Mary), Simon Choat (Kingston), Clayton Chin (Queen Mary)

Despite its pervasiveness, the question of the relation between ontology and politics continues to be a crucial one for Continental philosophy.  While the place and status of the question of being in the realm of the political has occupied much of social theory in the past twenty or thirty years, we remain no closer to drawing any common ground on these themes.

Post-structuralist or post-foundational political thought has insisted on the inherent contingency of any political ontology and has, from this notion, sought to draw out a framework for an emancipatory politics grounded in the concepts of difference and otherness. However, such a stance finds itself increasingly challenged today. On the one hand, thinkers such as Alain Badiou and Jacques Ranciere call for the need to think a politics grounded in a conception of universality rather than alterity, while on the other hand, so-called speculative realism more fundamentally challenges the very notion of ontology as it has been conceived by the majority of Continental thinkers in recent decades.  This panel aims to explore the intersections of politics and ontology and the resulting implications for thinking both the political and the philosophical.

We invite papers addressing the following and any other related themes:
-Is there a place for reflection on ontology in the theorisation and study of politics?
-Is there a necessary transitivity between the ontological and the political?  How should this relation be conceived?
-Is there a necessarily leftist or emancipatory ontology?
-Should the politics which has generally been thought to follow from post-foundational or post-structuralist ontologies be re-evaluated in light of recent critiques?
-Does a new and different relation between ontology and politics follow from recent speculative materialist ontologies?

If you would like to present a paper at this workshop, please submit an abstract of 300-500 words (or a full paper) to p.rekret@qmul.ac.uk or S.Choat@kingston.ac.uk by 15 June 2011.

For more information on the conference see: http://manceptworkshops.wordpress.com/

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IMMANENCE AND MATERIALISM CONFERENCE

DEPARTMENT OF POLITICS
QUEEN MARY, UNIVERSITY OF LONDON

CALL FOR PAPERS

Date: 23 June 2009
Venue: Queen Mary, University of London
Call for papers deadline: 22 May 2009
All papers and enquiries to: s.j.choat@qmul.ac.uk

Keynote speakers:

Professor James Williams (University of Dundee)
Dr Ray Brassier (American University of Beirut)
Dr Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths, University of London)


The concepts of immanence and materialism are becoming increasingly important in political philosophy. This conference seeks to analyse the connections between these two concepts and to examine the consequences for political thought. It is possible, as Giorgio Agamben has done, to make a distinction within modern philosophy between a line of transcendence (Kant, Husserl, Levinas, Derrida) and a line of immanence (Spinoza, Nietzsche, Deleuze, Foucault). If we follow this distinction, then ‘the line of immanence’ might include Spinozist interpretations of Marx, Althusser’s aleatory materialism, and Deleuze’s superior empiricism. But what is the value of this work and is it useful to distinguish it from ‘transcendent’ philosophies? Distinctions between materialism and idealism are equally complex: Derrida, for example, might as easily be classed a materialist as an idealist. And where can we place more recent work like the critiques of Deleuze by Badiou and Zizek, or Meillassoux’s speculative materialism?

Papers may wish to consider the following questions:
* What is materialist philosophy? How can it be distinguished from idealist philosophy, and is it useful to do so? Are all philosophies of immanence necessarily materialist?
* Is it legitimate or useful to make a clear distinction between philosophies of immanence and philosophies of transcendence?
* How have the concepts of immanence and materialism traditionally been conceived within political philosophy?

* What, if any, are the political consequences of pursuing a philosophy of immanence?

 

Paper titles and a 300-word abstract should be sent by Friday 22 May 2009 to Simon Choat at: s.j.choat@qmul.ac.uk, Department of Politics, Queen Mary College, University of London.

Graduate papers welcome.


Dr Simon Choat
Lecturer in Politics
Queen Mary, University of London
Office: Hatton House 1B
Email: s.j.choat@qmul.ac.uk
Tel: 020 7882 8592
http://www.politics.qmul.ac.uk/staff/choat/index.html

 

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk