CFP: The 4th European Network of Japanese Philosophy Conference

Submission deadline: April 30, 2018

Conference date(s):
September 5, 2018 - September 8, 2018

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Conference Venue:

Department of Philosophy, Universität Hildesheim
Hildesheim , Germany

Topic areas


The European Network of Japanese Philosophy (ENOJP) is pleased to announce its 4th Conference which will take place on September 5-8 2018 at the University of Hildesheim (Germany). We encourage applicants to send in proposals for individual presentations or group proposals of about 3 persons to collaborate on a panel together. Papers dealing with the conference theme “Übergänge – Transitions – 移り渉り” are particularly welcome, but papers on other aspects related to Japanese Philosophy will also be considered.

“Transitions” can be interpreted on the one hand as spatial continuities, the blurring of borders, spaces of openness or mediating intersections, on the other hand as temporal processes of metamorphosis, transformation or revolution. Spatiotemporal forms of movement are also phenomena of transition which leave objectified traces on their path without being identical to them. “Transitions” are characterized by vagueness and openness. They blur the boundaries of distinct phenomena and break up the borders of fixed definitions, enabling separate fields to resonate and opposing notions to interfere with each other.

In Japanese philosophy, we find a wide variety of philosophical insight into transitory phenomena. The notions of nothingness (無) and emptiness (空) in Daoist and Buddhist thought can be interpreted as modalities of openness which enable transitions and interpenetrations between different phenomena (自自無碍). This fundamental idea is also influential in contemporary Japanese thinkers. Nishida Kitarō’s “logic of place” emphasizes the (me-)ontological priority of encompassing fields and processes of self-structuring over rigid substances. Watsuji Tetsurō’s notion of “betweenness” (間柄) stresses the relationality and spatial transition of human existence which has inspired Hamaguchi Eshun to come up with his concept of “intersubject” (間人).

The thematic focus of the conference emphasizes the importance of such an engagement with “transitions” in the context of Japanese philosophy. Moreover, it aims at showing the possibility of an interdisciplinary transition between philosophy and other scientific and creative fields of knowledge and practice, enabling a “thinking in transition” that remodels itself continuously while engaging with current debates.

Please send your proposal responding to these questions or on any other relevant topics in the field of comparative and Japanese philosophy to the ENOJP at The proposal should contain a short abstract of a presentation or a panel (500 word max. with 5-10 keywords) either in Germna, English, or Japanese, and each presenter’s CV. For any questions or concerns, please send your inquiries also to the same address.


本年度のENOJPコンファレンスのタイトルとなったドイツ語の「Übergänge」(英: Transitions)という言葉 は、空間的諸連続、また次第に曖昧になっていく境界線、開かれた場所、また半物質的・架け橋的領域のみならず、時間的変成(メタモルフォーゼ)や変形・変容(Transformation)の過程、そして出来事や現象のようにして起こった突発的変化といったかたちで現前してくるものを指します。

この「Übergänge」 は、曖昧なふうにしか規定できないような、はっきりとした輪郭を持たず、規定しようとしても何らかの隙間を残す、といった特徴を示します。境界と境界を暈(ぼか)し、 確固とした定義のようなものは押し破ってしまう。そして互いに隔絶した領域や二項対立する概念同士が、互いに重なり合い、互いを高め合うとも足を引っ張り合うとも言えるような形で共鳴し合うと言えるでしょう。

日本哲学という分野では、この「Übergänge (Transitions)」と呼べる現象について多様な議論が広がっています。 道教、仏教的思想において中心的と言える「無」や「空」の概念は、開かれていることそれ自体のある種の諸形相として理解することができます。これらの開きのかたちは、諸現象の間に起こる動的な変化である「Übergänge (Transitions)」や相関的な貫徹性(自自無碍)を可能にすると言えるでしょう。この基礎となる考えは、姿かたちを変えて近代日本の哲学においても再発見できます。西田幾多郎の場所の論理は、硬直した主体概念の確立以前の、場所的(原野的)自己構成過程の(不)存在論(me-ontologie)の優位を強調しています。和辻哲郎においては、「間柄」の概念でもって人間的現存在の関係性と移行性(Übergängigkeit)を重視し、またこれは木村敏の「あいだ」としての主体の考えにも関係が見られるでしょう。そして、これを踏まえ、後の社会学者、浜口 恵俊は「間人」という概念を成立させます。



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