CFP: Enlightenment and Secularism

Submission deadline: February 5, 2016

Conference date(s):
May 20, 2016 - May 22, 2016

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Conference Venue:

Institute of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University
Kraków, Poland

Topic areas


We are pleased to announce a call for abstracts for the colloquium on Enlightenment and Secularism at the Department of the History of Philosophy at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków on 20-22 May 2016. Abstracts of maximum 500 words in lenght should focus on any of the following topics:

  • The idea of and arguments for the freedom of thought and conscience formulated by the early modern and Enlightenment thinkers, and their historical and philosophical background (e.g. religious persecutions, ancien régime, second scholasticism)
  • The relation of these ideas and arguments to current debates on secularism. In particular: is there space for religious prac tices in a genuinely secular state – and if there is, should this concession be anyhow qualified? Or are some of the Enlightenment philosophers, especially those more radical ones, right when they claim that only the “universal religion,” safeguarding basic moral principles, can be justified in the public sphere?   
  • The nature and limits of the freedom of conscience in a secular state. In particular: should there be any restrictions on the freedom of conscience in a contemporary democratic state? Or should the state enable and allow people to live in accordance with their religious beliefs, even if this sometimes requires a compromise on legal or other norms of a country? 

Participants will have 30 minutes for presentation and 15 minutes for discussion. The submitted abstracts will undergo a peer-review, and the applicants will be informed whether their abstract has been accepted a month after the submission deadline. If you are interested in participating in the colloquium with a presentation, please submit your abstract (as a Word document), accompanied with a short note including information about your contact details, academic position and affiliation, by 5th February 2016, to one of the organizers:

Dr. Anna Tomaszewska, a.tomaszewska(at)

Dr. Hasse Hämäläinen, h.j.hamalainen(at)

Damian Barnat, MA, damian.barnat(at)

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