Confirmed speakers: Prof Paul Crowther, National University of Ireland, Galway, Prof Joanna Hodge, Manchester Metropolitan University, Prof Gary Schapiro, University of Richmond.
Phenomenology has always been closely
associated with aesthetics and the arts. Even Husserl, who conceives it as a
'rigorous science', remarks on the close relation between phenomenological
reflection and 'disinterested' aesthetic judgment. The later Heidegger, although
dismissive of aesthetics, describes poetic art as the 'happening of truth' and
the 'opening of the world'. Merleau-Ponty hopes to find in artistic practice
clues for a practice of phenomenology as an embodied alternative to scientistic
and intellectualist models of inquiry. We should remember also the contributions
made to phenomenology, aesthetics, and reflections on the arts by Sartre,
Levinas, Ricoeur, Ingarden, Dufrenne, De Beauvoir, and Hartmann among others.
More generally, hermeneutic and later post-structuralist strands of
phenomenology, with their emphasis on interpretation and textuality over and
against purely logical or causal explanation, often pitch their critiques in
artistic, or literary, modes of engagement.
Artists, in turn, find in
phenomenology a type of philosophical reflection that offers ways of thinking
about the complex embodied and social experiences of their practice. In
particular, phenomenological approaches have been exploited as alternatives to
the earlier conceptual turn in art making. Now it is time to rethink the
relations between phenomenology, aesthetics and the arts in contemporary
contexts of new political, wider social and scientific developments.
British Society for Phenomenology and the newly established Irish
Phenomenological Circle have joined together for this conference in order to
unite international voices from both philosophical and artistic fields for an
open discussion of the potential contributions phenomenology can make to
philosophical and artistic practices and debates.
If you are interested
in reading a paper at the conference, please send an abstract of approx. 1000
words by 15 January, 2012 to email@example.com.