Monday, January 28, 2008

CFP: "Politics and Metaphysics in Kant," 5th Conference, European Consortium for Political Research, Potsdam, September 10-12, 2009.

The past three decades have witnessed the emergence, at the forefront of political thought, of several Kantian theories. Both the critical reaction to consequentialism inspired by Rawlsian constructivism and the universalism of more recent theories informed by Habermasian discourse ethics trace their main sources of inspiration back to Kant’s writings. Yet, much of what is Kantian in contemporary theory is formulated with more or less strict caveats concerning Kant’s metaphysics. These range from radical claims that theories of justice must be political, not metaphysical, to more cautious calls for replacing Kant’s metaphysics with a more modest ontology, for instance, one informed by the relatively recent linguistic turn in philosophy. Given the current “legitimation crisis” of modern liberal democracies, the purpose of this section is to explore the relationship between politics and metaphysics in Kant and Kantian political philosophy, in order to revisit the question concerning the role of metaphysics in political theory. We welcome papers on these and related issues, whether their primary focus is on Kant’s philosophy or on the relevance of Kant’s philosophy for contemporary political philosophy and theories of justice. After the success of last year’s section on ‘Politics and Metaphysics in Kant’ at the 4th ECPR Conference in Pisa, we are planning to put forward again a section proposal on the same theme for the 5th ECPR Conference in Postdam 10-12 September 2009. We would like to know whether anyone would like to express at this stage an interest in suggesting a panel title, chairing a panel or giving a paper. The section proposal has to be submitted by the15th of April 2008, and the more details we can give on the number and content of potential panels, the better our chances might be to be awarded a high number of panel slots for the conference. The previous section outline is copied below to give you some more information about the problems and questions which this section hopes to address, although at this stage we are also open to further suggestions. Please email Kerstin at if you think you might be interested to chair a panel, suggest a panel title or present a paper.

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