Expanding the Canon: Transitions and Transformations in Medieval and Early Modern Philosophy
Schloss Neuhaus 1 39030
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There has been much discussion in academia regarding the lack of diversity and inclusiveness at Anglo-American and European institutions of higher education. This problem is particularly dire in the discipline of Philosophy, especially when compared with other disciplines in the Humanities. At the same time, there is some reason to believe that one reason for low retention and hiring rates of underrepresented groups is the presence of certain biases in the discipline – biases that may be shaped, in part, through the way the history of philosophy in Western academia is conceptualized by scholars and taught to students.
Indeed, much of what drives many intuitions and assessments about what counts as “philosophical”, which philosophical figures, traditions, and problems are “worth” discussing, and what constitutes the “proper” way of doing philosophy has to do with the kinds of philosophy one encounters and the historical philosophical narrative with which one is typically presented in academic contexts. Unfortunately, the traditional Western narrative both displays and perpetuates strong implicit (and sometimes explicit) biases in terms of gender, ethnicity, ability, geography, and religion, to name just a few. It is a narrative divided into epochs that are themselves often the result of a Western reframing in later periods.
The workshop, “Expanding the Canon: Transitions and Transformations in Medieval and Early Modern Philosophy”, to be held at Castle Neuhaus (Gais, IT) from July 1-6, 2018, aims to discuss ways of expanding and revising the historical philosophical canon and the way it is taught in the university. Daytime sessions will involve participant presentations on relevant topics, as well as interdisciplinary approaches, while the evenings will be organized into smaller roundtables and group brainstorming sessions, as well as dramatic readings and other activities.
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