Critical Theories

March 30, 2012 - March 31, 2012
Department of Philosophy, Villanova University

800 Lancaster Ave.
Villanova 19085
United States

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Nancy Fraser
New School for Social Research


Patricia Grosse
Villanova University
Robert Leib
Villanova University

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As the “Occupy X” movements spread across the United States and resistance movements continue in the Middle East, we recognize the pressing need for continued engagement with critical theory in it myriad forms. Since its inception in the 1920s, critical theory has sought to interrogate oppressive structures and imagine possibilities for human emancipation. During the present age of global capital and neoliberal governance, however, resistance has often appeared futile. But the economic crises of the 21st century have reawakened the call for critique both in theory and practice. As global political conditions radically shift and new modes of oppression and resistance materialize, examining historical iterations of critical theory and various contemporary critical theories appears ever more urgent.

 We are accepting submissions on topics including, but not limited to, the idea, method, and definition of "critique"; ideology; emancipation; discourse and the public sphere; problems and questions of modernity and Enlightenment; dialectics and materialism; redistribution and recognition; politics and the (im)possibility of democracy; and the relationship between critical theory and aesthetics, deconstruction, and other forms of theory (e.g., sociology, postcolonial theory, queer theory, feminism, and race theory). Possible figures include but are not limited to the following: Karl Marx, Herbert Marcuse, Theodor Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Max Horkheimer, Jürgen Habermas, Allison Jaggar, Karl-Otto Apel, Cornelius Castoriadis, Hannah Arendt, Charles Mills, Richard Rorty, Max Weber, Mikhail Bakhtin, Enrique Dussel, Angela Davis, Axel Honneth, Iris Marion Young, Seyla Benhabib, Michel Foucault, Louis Althusser, Jean Baudrillard, Paulo Friere, Pierre Bourdieu, Judith Butler, Erich Fromm, Guy Debord, Giorgio Agamben, Jacques Rancière, Johann Löwenthal, Paul Ricoeur.

We encourage submissions from faculty members, graduate students, and independent scholars of abstracts (300-500 words) or papers (3,000 to 4,000 words). Please format these for blind review, including a cover sheet with name, contact details, institutional affiliation, and paper title.

Please email your submissions or any questions you may have to: [email protected].

The deadline for submission is February 1, 2012.

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