The aim of the conference is to bring together all those interested in discerning the future of the humanities. The conference is intended for a broad constituency: Master’s and doctoral students, PhD holders, university teachers, writers, journalists, etc. An additional aim is to act as a summary of all the many discussions which took place during the Faculty’s four-year International Doctoral Programme (MPD).
We invite you to conduct a simple thought experiment. Imagine for a moment that we live in a world with no humanities. There are no literary studies, no history, no philosophy and no art history. All those disciplines have now disappeared from sight, never to return again. What will the consequences of this disappearance be? What will be lost if we lose the humanities?
Our thought experiment assumes that the humanities are contingent. They appeared on the intellectual scene at a certain point in time, and it is possible that they could disappear at another point in time. Can we predict the consequences of this disappearance?
We would like to treat this thought experiment as a pretext for discussion of the identity of the humanities and the identities of researchers in the humanities. We assume that the question of identity can be posed anew by reflection on what would be lost without the humanities. Most importantly we would like to raise the question of the past, present and future of the humanities.
The following list of themes suggests, but does not exhaust, the framework of our thought experiment:
Humanities and ideology: are the humanities ideologised or do they offer an antidote against ideology?
Recovering the silenced voices: how do we read the official and non-official history of the humanities?
The researcher in the humanities and his role today: what can we learn from critics of the humanities?
No humanities – no gender, no race? What would be the future of gender equality without gender studies? How could racism and colonialism be critically verified without postcolonial studies?
The 'collective' and 'individual' in the research process: in what way could large scale, collaborative research projects reshape both the humanities and researchers in the humanities?
Subjects and objects of research in the humanities: could the absence of the subject (the researcher) of the humanities lead also to the disappearance of their object?
We invite you to give short, dynamic presentations (ca. 10 minutes) on any of these or related topics, which will be followed by a longer panel discussion. The authors of accepted abstracts will be asked to provide extended resumes (ca. 1000 words) of their papers, which will be circulated among all the participants one month prior to the meeting. The language of the conference is English.
After the conference, we plan to publish selected, extended papers in the form of a monograph. All papers submitted for the conference publication will be peer-reviewed by a scientific committee: Prof. Maciej Abramowicz, Prof. Jerzy Axer, Prof. Jan Kieniewicz, Prof. Ewa Łukaszyk, Prof. Joanna Partyka, Prof. Jolanta Sujecka, Prof. Piotr Wilczek.
Unfortunately, we are not able to refund the costs of attendance, however we can help with arranging accommodation in Warsaw during the period of the conference.
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