1st Global Conference
Persons, Friendship and Modern Life
Monday 19th November - Wednesday 21st November 2007
Call for Papers
Friendship plays a key role in our development as a person. In different stages of life we have different friends and yet we also have life-time friends. Is friendship threatened by modern commercial society? Employment patterns uproot and relocate people; children have to move to new schools and often take time to make new friends. Is friendship threatened by the rise of technology? Advances in telecommunications, e-mail and other forms of communication underlines the fact that we are no longer in a face-to-face society What is happening to friendship as a result of this? Are we too busy to meet each other and see each other except at significant social occasions (for example, christenings, weddings or funerals)? How does friendship work at the level of nations and states? What are international and global friendships?
The conference will try to unpack these issues in contemporary life so much of which puts new strains in human relationships. The following are some of the areas of discussion and there are of course others which participants may like to include:
Changes in marriage, kinship and family and how this affects our experience of friendship
The place of friendship in an impersonal society
Friendship as a social need; implications of the absence of friendships; the loner
Friends, foes and strangers
The influence of the media and technology
Persons, friendship and the over-valuing of work
How neighbours become friends; how neighbours become enemies
Friendship and love. Changing patterns of intimacy. Intimacy overload and disappointment
Friendship as a relation free of constitutional linkage. Friendship versus spheres of claim, e.g. family, peer groups, community and class
Friendship in childhood
The loneliness of suburban wives; modern society as a lonely society. Evidence of surveys, agony columns etc
Analysis of the contemporary language of friendship: ‘partners’ , ‘companions’, ‘significant others’. Does friendship feature in these relationships?
Friendship and various other social forms - cronyism, patronism, gang membership, being a colleague. The loss of collegiality. The factor of keeping boundaries
Is friendship a morally privileged relationship? Nepotism and the obligation to be impartial in the moral life. Distinctions made between amicitia, eros, and agape in different periods of time
Civic friendship and justice
National, international and global friendships
Papers will be considered on any related theme. 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 17th August 2007. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be developed and submitted by Friday 9th November 2007. The draft paper should be of no more than 8 or 9 pages long and ready for a 20 minute (maximum) presentation during the conference.
If you are interested in participating, please send 300 word abstracts (simultaneously) to both Organising Chairs; they may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats, in the following order: author(s), affiliation, email address, title of abstract, body of abstract. We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper or panel proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us within 14 days you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.
Department of Philosophy,
University of Calgary,
The conference is part of the ‘Persons’ research projects, which in turn belong to the ‘Probing the Boundaries’ programmes of ID.Net. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and challenging. All papers accepted for and presented at this conference are eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers will be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume.
For further details about the project please visit:
For further details about the conference please visit:
Dr Rob Fisher
Priory House, Wroslyn Road, Freeland, Oxfordshire. OX29 8HR
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