Call for Papers

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Volume 4: no. 4 (14)/2020 Methods of Philosophy of Culture [Extended Deadline – August 16th, 2020]

This issue of our journal will be devoted specifically to the methodological considerations of the current status of philosophy of culture, its relation to other philosophical disciplines as well as to the humanities in general. But above all, we wish to pose the question about methods and perspectives which seem to be the most adequate (if this adjective has not lost its whole relevance) and comprehensive in our efforts of understanding culture.
Culture, as can be seen from the philosophical perspective, is not only the realm of objectified meanings, but its very notion indicates also different modes of dynamic apprehension and recognition of these meanings, as well as their denial, resistance or misrecognition. In other words, to the “essence” of culture belongs a fundamental contradiction between what is objectively posited (facticity) and the processes of self-questioning, the reflective movement beyond all factual determinations. One can say that this contradiction can be expressed by a whole series of unsurpassable tensions between facts and a possible a priori, objective determinations and the ever-present space of indeterminacy, alienation and recognition (and self-recognition), facts and values, the human and the inhuman, the real and the imaginary, cultural arche and telos, etc. It seems that all these tensions become more and more visible in contemporary culture marked by an unprecedented level of complexity and dynamics; by a “liquid” or even aporetic character.

From this perspective, it is difficult not to underestimate the role of philosophy of culture. And yet, it is just as difficult to correctly identify this role. Should it be a kind of reflective synopsis of all positive sciences concerning human reality? A kind of philosophical foundation for cultural studies/humanities (as there is a philosophy of natural sciences)? Or, quite on the contrary, should it be a relentless and normative effort of going beyond all factual determinations, a movement toward the indeterminable and unknown, but still somehow experienceable? What are/should be the distinctive methodological features of philosophy of culture? Are the philosophical currents traditionally associated with philosophy of culture (e.g. the neo-Kantian critical philosophy, phenomenology, hermeneutics, poststructuralism etc.) still able to fulfill their role? Are there, within contemporary philosophy, any new methodological perspectives which could offer valuable tools for the analysis of contemporary cultural phenomena?

We welcome all insightful papers which will address these and similar questions.

Extended Deadline: Papers can be submitted by August 16th, 2020 to: eidos.ed@uw.edu.pl

They have to be previously unpublished and they cannot be under consideration for publication elsewhere. They should be prepared for a double-blind review process.

Please, make sure that your paper complies with our submission standards which are posted here.

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Volume 5: no. 1/2021 Philosophy as a Way of Life in a Time of Crisis

This issue of our journal will be devoted specifically to the meaning and purpose of writing works of philosophy as a way of life (PWL) in times of cultural upheaval, uncertainty, pain, and new suffering. When the world finds itself in the middle of a pandemic with its consequent confinement and social isolation, a related economic crisis, the unmasking of ongoing systematic racism, the global rise of far right politics, and the spread of violence, what role can the work of philosophers have in helping individuals and communities strive for a wise, just, and meaningful life?

From Marcus Aurelius’ meditations written in the midst of war and plague, and Montaigne’s Essais penned amidst civil strife, to Martin Luther King Jr.’s sermons which incited a movement rooted in non-violence to fight systematic racism in the United States, those committed to the philosophical life have used a variety of literary genres to affect, exhort, enlighten and console their readers. Today we find ourselves in a profound crisis of civilization, as the Covid-19 pandemic unleashes a pandora’s box of suffering that was underneath the “old normal”: global inequality driven by late capitalism, the unsustainable amount of waste produced by rich countries, the rapid loss of biodiversity, climate change, systematic racism and white supremacy rooted in the colonial history and the rise of today’s nation-states, and anti-democratic populism driven by a digital reality that has no boundaries.

The idea of PWL is pre-eminently associated with French philosopher and philologist Pierre Hadot. According to this idea, the goal of philosophy is to transform its practitioners’ lives. Ancient Western philosophy, as Hadot asked us to see it, was abidingly oriented by Socrates’ question of “how is it best to live?” It included in its purview prescriptions of “spiritual exercises” or what Michel Foucault called “technologies of the self” to actively transform how people perceive the world and live their lives: exercises like the view from above, heightened attention to the present moment, the examination of conscience, or the premeditation of death and misfortunes. These older practices of philosophy were also tied to, and expressed within, different literary genres than those we recognize today, from dialogues to consolations, meditations, discourses, handbooks, aphorisms, even poems and prayers. Ancient philosophers aimed to do more, or different things with words, than perhaps we do today.

The study of PWL in historical thinkers hence invites philosophers today to reconsider the ends and means of their work, their relations to others, to the university, to the city, and to the global community. Our present situation makes such reflection more urgent than ever.

This edition of Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture calls for papers examining the role or roles of philosophy in times of crisis. Can philosophy any longer be therapeutic or consolatory, as it was for the ancients? What different genres can and should philosophers write and with what aims? Can philosophy provide new visions of human community when community seems fraught or broken? During such times as these, what should the philosopher write and for whom? Should we write consolations for ourselves in a world we cannot control? Should we catalyze others to transform society through fiery manifestos? Do we pen dialogues, fictional works, and artistic essays to incite necessary thought and reflection? Ought philosophers, driven by the new necessities, to aim only to accumulate high end journal articles and manuscripts with leading publishers that few will read but our colleagues? Or ought we to challenge what Frodeman and Briggle calls “disciplinary capture”? Should we instead be writing for broader audiences with tabletop books that support others on the quest for the good life, or does that oversimplify and perhaps cheapen the depth of our work and PWL? What is the role for the professional philosopher today? In view of the current pandemic, should we shift our priorities toward online publications, presentations, seminars and conferences? Should this change in priorities persist even after the return to “normal”?

We welcome insightful, previously-unpublished papers which will address these and similar questions.

Papers, which will be double-blind peer-reviewed, can be submitted by November 15th, 2020 to: eidos.ed@uw.edu.pl.

Please, make sure that your paper complies with our submission standards which are posted here.

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General CFP

Apart from Calls for Papers to thematic sections, Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture invites, on a continuous basis, all high-quality papers which address topics relevant for philosophy of culture. Contemporary culture can be characterized as highly complex, dynamic if not aporetic: as a realm of ever changing conceptual and axiological frameworks, and of plural or even competing meanings. In this perspective, what is needed is constantly renewed philosophical reflection, which not only addresses but also interprets and makes sense of different cultural processes. For philosophy of culture itself demands (perhaps, more than ever before) a form of deepened meta-reflection, which confront the problems of its essence, methods, and a role it should play. Therefore, we welcome both: original analyses of contemporary cultural phenomena and methodological considerations on the current status of philosophy of culture and its relations to other philosophical disciplines as well as to the humanities in general.

The essays should be submitted as an e-mail attachment to: eidos.ed@uw.edu.pl.

The essays have to be previously unpublished and they cannot be under consideration for publication elsewhere. They should be prepared for a double-blind review process. Please, make sure that your paper complies with our submission standards which are posted here.

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