CFP: Philosophy in the thought of Stanisław Lem. Fifth Edition: Ethics

Submission deadline: March 15, 2020

Conference date(s):
September 5, 2020 - September 6, 2020

Go to the conference's page

Conference Venue:

Arteteka, Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna
Kraków, Poland

Topic areas


Ethical and axiological reflection play a key role in Lem’s thought being evoked constantly by questions concerning the essence of humanity, the function of technology and culture. The writer, speaking up at the tribunal of ethics, formulates accusations against Homo Sapiens (see “The Eighth Voyage” from Star Diaries), the Nature itself (see “Pasquinade on Evolution” from Summa Technologiae), and God (see “Non Serviam” from A Perfect Vacuum). As a Holocaust-survivor he was never deluded that the development of civilization can bring about the ultimate solution to the moral problems of humankind. He diagnosed, sadly, the failure of projects aimed at eradicating evil from social reality which were put forward in the spirit of the Enlightenment, and foresaw that any future attempts would also prove fruitless (at best). In his science fiction novels – from The Astronauts to Fiasco, Observation on the Spot, and Peace on Earth – he tried to point to the logic of conflict coming to the fore even when our initial intentions are genuinely peaceful.

The fifth edition of the conference series “Philosophy in the thought of Stanisław Lem” will be devoted to ethics (understood broadly), axiology, and the problem of evil. We are looking for submissions consisting of abstracts (max. 1500 characters) concerning, but not only, the following topics related to the thought and works by Lem:

  • ethics and technology and the development of civilization
  • ethical problems of medicine (transplantology, birth control, etc.)
  • human responsibility for Artificial Intelligence
  • evolution of value systems and the possibility of objective moral assessment
  • is Nature moral?
  • auto-evolution as an ethical problem
  • the problem of evil and the existence of God
  • evil within human nature, within social structures, within the structure of the world – “betrization” and the “ethicosphere”
  • ethical aspects of “phantomatics”
  • the ethos of a scientist

Abstracts should be submitted via email to by March 15th, 2020. Please include your name, contact information, and disciplinary/institutional affiliation in the body of your email.

The conference is organized by:

  • Institute of Philosophy and Sociology at the Pedagogical University of Krakow
  • Polish Philosophical Society – Krakow Branch
  • Krakowskie Biuro Festiwalowe
  • Virtual Reality Research Lab at AGH University of Science and Technology
  • Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna w Krakowie


  • Aleksandra Biegalska (UP)
  • Jakub Gomułka (UP)
  • Jowita Guja (AGH)
  • Filip Kobiela (PTF)
  • Jakub Palm (UP)

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