CFP: Existential Philosophy for Times of Change and Crisis: Loneliness and Togetherness (3rd edition)

Submission deadline: July 1, 2022

Conference date(s):
September 2, 2022 - September 3, 2022

Go to the conference's page

Conference Venue:

Cracow University of Economics, Poland
Kraków, Poland

Topic areas


Dates and Location:

2-3 September 2022, 10:00-17:00 Central European Summer Time (times subject to modification once the conference programme is finalised). This will be an in-person event only, held at the Cracow University of Economics, Poland


For this third edition of our Existential Philosophy for Times of Change and Crisis conference series (see the website www.chandeandcrisis.eufor archives), we will seek to re-examine the applicability of existential philosophy, broadly understood, for dealing with the drastic changes to our lives brought about by the pandemic and ensuing social and economic difficulties.

The specific focus of this third edition will centre around the existential phenomena of loneliness and togetherness. Our conviction is that existential philosophy contains many valuable insights and perspectives that could be rearticulated in contemporary contexts. Existential thought needs, however, to be expanded upon and revised in order to offer concrete means of grappling with contemporary challenges, such as our relations to non-human others and the natural environment, issues of identity politics, gender and intersectionality, or the ways in which modern technologies shape our lifeworld. It needs to be rethought in order to respond to strong and pertinent challenges from socially minded thinkers such as Theodor Adorno, who during the early years of the existential/phenomenological turn in the 1930s pointed to the dangers of making the singular individual, and his quest for authenticity and freedom, the only value or determinant of human life, and thus of becoming a radicalised individualism or subjectivism, and of neglecting the socio-political problems and contexts that determine possibilities of human existence.

            Nevertheless, existential philosophy grapples with the difficult task of exploring (human) existence through an understanding of life as what separates and unites, and an account of the basic and fundamental relationality of our existences in a shared world of interactions—in other words an account of the dynamics between solitude and sociality, loneliness and togetherness. As such, it can provide new resources for understanding our contemporary world.

Some specific questions this conference seeks to put forward are:

-      How can existential philosophy aid us in promoting diversity and inclusiveness, and celebrating difference?

-      Does existential isolation lead to a crisis of meaning?

-      Are economic and socio-political change a cause of existential crisis?

-      Can existential thought provide an understanding of togetherness?

We are especially looking for contributions engaging with current issues from the perspectives of influential thinkers in existential philosophy and phenomenology, such as Albert Camus, Theodor Adorno, Emil Cioran, Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sartre, Karl Jaspers, Hannah Arendt, Martin Heidegger and Ludwig Wittgenstein, and their nineteenth-century predecessors (Kierkegaard, Nietzsche…). 


To propose a talk:

Scholars interested in presenting should send a 300 word abstract by 1 July 2022 to [email protected]. Notification of acceptance by 30 July 2022 (early submission and evaluation are welcome for international scholars wishing to plan their travels earlier; please inform us of this in your email). Conference programme to follow. Presentations should be 25 minutes, followed by 25 minutes discussion time. 

Registration (for non-speakers wishing to attend): 

Register by email by 15 August 2022to [email protected]indicating ‘Conference registration’ in the subject heading. 

In the body of the email, please indicate your full name, institutional affiliation and email address(this information is for institutional purposes only and will not be disclosed to any third party). 

Conference participation open to all and free of chargefor all speakers and participants. 

Further information:


See the conference website:


Mélissa Fox-Muraton(ESC Clermont/PHIER, University Clermont Auvergne, France)

Jakub Gomułka(Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Pedagogical University of Kraków, Poland)

Katarzyna Gurczyńska-Sady(Pedagogical University of Kraków, Poland)

Hanna Nasielska (Doctoral School, Pedagogical University of Kraków/Cracow University of Economics, Poland)

Bartłomiej Kossakowski-Kisiel (Doctoral School, Pedagogical University of Kraków, Poland)

Supporting material

Add supporting material (slides, programs, etc.)