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2023 CFP: The Nature of Nature

THE NATURE OF NATURE

Special issue of the Danish Yearbook for Philosophy.

Guest editors: Sune Frølund and Jon Auring Grimm, Aarhus University, Denmark (AU)

Short call for papers:

Nature is again on the philosophical agenda and plays a considerable role in the many new philosophical trends, including materialistic, speculative, eco-feministic, vitalistic, post-humanistic, deep-ecological or new-existential reconsiderations of human being’s place in nature. Today, particularly the ecological and climatic situation has roused philosophy’s engagement with nature and an interest to unravel the relations between nature, society, culture and human beings. The monopoly of science on nature is contested and alternative ways to access nature have been developed for many years by a rather small number of philosophers of nature.

The theme THE NATURE OF NATURE is also the overriding theme of the 2023 conference and annual meeting of The Danish Philosophical Society that is arranged by the Section of Philosophy of Education and General Pedagogics at Aarhus University, Campus Emdrup (Copenhagen) and takes place the 3rd and 4th of March, 2023.

Confirmed contributors to the special issue and keynote speakers at the conference: Kate Soper (London Metropolitan University) and Allan Stoekl (Penn State University).

Deadline for submissions is October 1st, 2023.

Guidelines for submissions at the journal’s home page HERE 

Danish Yearbook of Philosophy is a peer-reviewed journal founded in 1964. It is now published annually by Brill for The Danish Philosophical Society. Reflecting the broad interpretation of philosophy institutionalized at Danish Universities, the Yearbook aims to cover as broad a philosophical ground as possible in relation to philosophical schools, styles and traditions.

Full call for papers:

“Nature is cruel in her cheerfulness; cynical in her sunrises”, Nietzsche wrote. Whether nature is cynical, joyful, harmonic or chaotic is an unsettled question. In any case, nature is again on the philosophical agenda and plays a considerable role in the many new philosophical trends, including materialistic, speculative, eco-feministic, vitalistic, post-humanistic, deep-ecological or new-existential reconsiderations of human being’s place in nature.

Today, particularly the ecological and climatic situation has roused philosophy’s engagement with nature and an interest to unravel the relations between nature, society, culture and human beings. Today, the monopoly of science on nature is contested and alternative ways to access nature have been developed for many years by a rather small number of philosophers of nature. Yet, it seems to have been the sciences - though ‘softer’ sciences like geology, climatology, geography and biology - that have managed to convince the population and politicians that global warming and mass extinction long have been reality.

The philosopher’s answers to the dire questions of man and nature are many. Some have declared the death or end of nature, others see signs of life in matter, and yet others identify in the ecological catastrophe a long time tormented, but powerful nature’s revenge over human megalomania. Some have tried to restore the alleged harmonic connection between humans and nature or have suggested we should simply yield to nature. Again, there are voices that proposes emancipation from the topics of philosophy of nature by showing that concepts like nature, society and human being are mere fictions in the service of a conservative politics, which threatens our survival. A possible climatic collapse to come and the ongoing sixth mass extinction makes such problems urgent.

The theme The Nature of Nature can also be approached as a question: is there such a thing as nature and is it possible to answer the question of the nature of nature? Are there natures or only one nature? Does nature still love to hide? Further questions are legio. Here are a few examples:

-          Can philosophy of nature cooperate with natural science?

-          (How) should we reconsider the philosophical curriculum, that in some degrees have excluded pre-ecological thinking, philosophies of nature and so on?

-          How does new outlooks on nature reflect on ethics?

-          Does the divide between nature and culture still stand?

-          How do we make sense of ecology and sustainability?

-          What role should ideas of growth, sustainability and ecology play in political philosophy?To what degree are we in nature, of nature or above nature?

-          What role allots philosophy of nature to reason?

-          How important is philosophy/ontology/metaphysics for environmental practice?

-          What is to be learned from the history of philosophy of nature?

-          Do we need to ascribe value to any entity – human as well as nonhuman – to learn to act for our own long-term survival?

-          Does it make sense to cancel the difference between humans and nonhumans?

-          Is ecology better off without nature?

-          Is the Anthropocene the pinnacle of constructivism?

-          How do we emancipate the idea of a good life from the ideology of growth?

-          How do we gain a post-growth joyfulness?

-          Etc…….

We invite everybody to carefully consider topics in which questions of nature are pivotal. Papers can be presented and discussed in parallel sessions at the Annual Meeting of Danish Philosophical Society 2023.

Confirmed contributors and speakers:

Kate Soper

Kate Soper is an Emeritus Professor of Philosophy and a former researcher with the Institute for the Study of European Transformations at London Metropolitan University.  She has also held an Honorary Professorship at the University of Brighton. She had a long association with Radical Philosophy, has been an editorial collective member and writer for New Left Review and a regular columnist for the US based journal, Capitalism, Nature, Socialism.  She is a translator, among others, of Noberto Bobbio, Michel Foucault, Cornelius Castoriadis and Carlo Ginsburg.  Her own books include: Troubled Pleasures:  Writings on Politics, Gender and Hedonism (1981);  Humanism and anti-humanism (1986); What is Nature?  Culture, Politics and the Non-Human (1995); To Relish the Sublime? Culture and self-realisation in postmodern times (co-author, 2001);  Citizenship and Consumption (co-edited; 2009); The Politics and Pleasures of Consuming Differently (co-edited; 2009).  She was lead researcher in the  research project on ‘Alternative Hedonism, and the theory and politics of consumption’ funded in the ESRC/AHRC Cultures of Consumption project, 2004-6.  She has been involved in a number of research projects on climate change and sustainable consumption, most recently as a Visiting Fellow at the Pufendorf Institute, Lund University, Sweden. Her Post-Growth Living:  for an alternative hedonism was published by Verso in 2020.

Alan Stoekl

Allan Stoekl is professor emeritus of French and comparative literature at Pennsylvania State University. He has lectured extensively in the US and abroad and has served as Visiting Professor at Johns Hopkins and Westminster University (London). His recent work has focused on issues of energy use, sustainability and economy in a literary-cultural and philosophical context. These subjects are at the forefront of his latest publication The Three Sunstainablities – energy, economy, time (2021) and the preceding publication Bataille’s Peak - Energy, Religion, and Postsustainability (2007). Additional books include: Politics, Writing, Mutilation: The Cases of Bataille, Blanchot, Roussel, Leiris, and Ponge (1986) and Agonies of the Intellectual: Commitment, Subjectivity, and the Performative in the Twentieth-Century French Tradition (1992). He is the translator of Maurice Blanchots The Most High, (2001), and has edited and translated Georges Bataille: Visions of Excess – selected writings, 1927-1939 (1985) and On Bataille, Yale French Studies (1990).

 

The theme THE NATURE OF NATURE is also the overriding theme of the 2023 conference and annual meeting of The Danish Philosophical Society that is arranged by the Section of Philosophy of Education and General Pedagogics at Aarhus University, Campus Emdrup (Copenhagen) and takes place the 3rd and 4th of March, 2023.

Confirmed contributors to the special issue and keynote speakers at the conference: Kate Soper (University of Brighton) and Allan Stoekl (Penn State University).

Deadline for submissions is January 1st, 2024.

Guidelines for submissions at the journal’s home page HERE

Danish Yearbook of Philosophy is a peer-reviewed journal founded in 1964. It is now published annually by Brill for The Danish Philosophical Society. Reflecting the broad interpretation of philosophy institutionalized at Danish Universities, the Yearbook aims to cover as broad a philosophical ground as possible in relation to philosophical schools, styles and traditions.

The journal publishes contributions in English, German and French, and within all areas of philosophy.

Articles should normally not exceed 20 pages of 400 words, i.e. 8000 words. Articles exceeding this limit may be accepted, however, if it is considered that their length is appropriate to their topic, and if they are found to be of sufficiently high quality.

Article manuscripts submitted to the journal must be refereed by a qualified international reviewer. Upon submission, please suggest three possibilities and provide links to their institutional homepages.