CONFERENCE – “The Ethics of Deextinction”, Concordia (Canada)

Ronald Sandler (Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy; Director, Ethics Institute Northeastern University) will be giving a talk entitled “The Ethics of Deextinction

Friday, February 7th, 2014
3:30 to 5:30pm
Concordia University – EV Building 1605
1515 Sainte-Catherine West – Montreal, QC – Canada

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CALL FOR PAPERS – The environment and the (post)human in Scotland

francescotlandTHE SFEEc (Société Française d’Études Écossaises), and the Association for Scottish Literary Studies

CALL FOR PAPERS: ‘The environment and the (post)human in Scotland. Representing nature and the living’

Annual International Conference, 17th to 19th October 2013 Université de Franche-Comté, Besançon

This international conference will explore how the environment — the land and nature — has been represented and considered throughout the ages and how the environment has often assumed a key position in Scotland’s artistic, political, social and cultural expression. Our aim is to see how these elements can be understood in their relationship to human beings — to their past and present existence, their future and their evolution: the human or posthuman dimensions.

Nature and the environment lie at the core of our current concerns and scientific paradigms. Political speeches or policies, packed with ecological concerns and considerations, have often advocated a return to nature. Scottish history, civilization, politics, art, literature and cinema will provide us with the means to explore these themes.

Throughout the ages, the environment and the notion of territory have often been considered as necessary to the manifestation of a Scottish identity or to the expression of specifically Scottish traits. It is possible to consider the land in a nationalist light: as a place of belonging and as an illustration of the intimate links that are claimed by some — or the intimate links that some claim to enjoy with the nation and its history. The land has often been used as a means of expression for nationalist and independent rhetoric or politics.

Nature and the environment can also be explored through the prism of Scottish history and the concomitant narratives of Scottishness. For instance the development of the nation can be charted through human transformations of the natural landscape and how these have in their turn impacted upon the perception and self-perception of the Scottish people. Indeed, before its Romantic, post-bellum recuperation as synecdoche of the nation, the Highlands and its inhabitants were long figured and often branded as the mysterious and frightening “Other”. During the nineteenth century, in the name of Improvement, the Highlands were transformed forever as crops and farming methods were altered and glens emptied, while the industrial revolution radically redesigned the Lowlands, modifying lifestyles and living conditions and irrevocably expanding the urban environment.

Today nature often seems entirely absent from the steel and concrete cityscapes of Scotland’s great urban centres. The contemporary metropolis has become a site of never-ending cultural and social change where the relationship between man and machine, be it car or computer, seems to be in a state of constant flux.

Nature and the environment also represent potential threats to the very existence of humanity, through natural or man-made disasters. The awesome power of nature ultimately places it beyond man’s control. The result is a potentially posthuman world, made up of adaptations and mutations, of disintegration and the disappearance of humanity or of cultures, or the birth of a new type of society or species.

Papers are invited from a wide range of approaches and angles which may include the following themes: Scottish literature; Travel writing in Scotland; Science fiction; fantasy; political speeches; propaganda; ideology; nationalism; devolution; Scottish history; ecology; ecocriticism; urbanism; cinema; theatre; painting; museography; new technologies; posthuman; hybridity.

Abstracts (250 words max. / 20mn papers) should be submitted by email before 20 April 2013 to

Please also include a short cv-bibliography of your works. Papers will be published in the conference proceedings.
All rooms will be equipped with a projector and a DVD-drive. Thank you for indicating if you require Internet connection.
UFR SLHS 30-32 rue Mégevand 25000 Besançon

For more information, see: (from April 2013)

The Université of Franche-Comté (with the help of the Region) should normally be able to cover some travel expenses to/from Besançon, accommodation and most catering expenses in Besançon. The registration fee is 30 euros.

CALL FOR PAPERS – Teoria: Rethinking “Nature”

(Italiano qui sotto)

Teoria, 1/2014
Ripensare la ‘natura’/ Rethinking ‘Nature’
Guest Editor: Flavia Monceri

Call for papers:
The notion of nature is one of the most recurring, and perhaps questioned notions, in Western philosophy and the social sciences. Although its definition was never obvious, nature currently seems in need of a more radical rethinking, also due to the increasing relevance of research fields that compel to its revision. This is just the goal of the present issue of «Teoria», by means of collecting contribution coming not only from philosophical but also social, psychological, literary and artistic sciences, at the aim to provide a reconstruction of the state of the art about the current definitions of nature and their implication for the concrete practices, which explicitly or implicitly refer to it. But there is a further goal: to let a number of hints emerge to correct, modify or even replace current definitions and understandings of nature with more adequate ones to constitute an effective reference for the problems of our time.

Contribution may be submitted, among others, on the following issues, which are non-exhaustively listed:
The notion of nature
Representations of nature
Nature and culture, nature/nurture
Nature, environment, human being
Nature and biotechnologies
Nature and human bodies
Nature and cultural context(s)
Nature and transcendence
Nature, power and politics
‘Real’ and ‘virtual’ nature

Alongside with some invited contributions, some others will be selected among the submitted ones. Prospective authors should send an abstract (max 1000 words) to the following e-mail addresses by 31st March (Prof. Adriano Fabris) and (Prof. Flavia Monceri) with the indication “Teoria-Rethinking Nature” in the subject heading. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and the acceptance or refusal of the submission will be notified by 30th April 2013. The editorial board reserves the faculty not to accept the final drafts that do not correspond to submitted abstracts, or do not pass the further selection process to which final drafts will be submitted. Moreover, the editorial board reserves the faculty to ask the authors to revise their contributions to fit them to the referees’ evaluations and/or editorial standards.

Abstracts and contributions can be submitted both in Italian and in English. The final draft must be submitted by 30th October 2013, to undergo the further selection process: the definitive answer on acceptance and eventual requested revisions will be given by 15th November 2013. The accepted contribution, including the eventual revisions,must be submitted by 30th November 2013. Authors are requested to follow the style guidelines of «Teoria», which are available on its website (; contributions should be between 7000-8000 words long.


«Teoria», 1/2014
Ripensare la ‘natura’/ Rethinking ‘Nature’
Guest Editor: Flavia Monceri

Call for papers:
Il concetto di natura è uno dei più presenti, e forse anche più dibattuti, nella filosofia e nelle scienze sociali occidentali. Sebbene la sua definizione non sia stata mai pacifica, attualmente esso sembra aver bisogno di un ripensamento più radicale, dovuto anche alla sempre maggiore rilevanza di ambiti di ricerca che impongono una sua revisione. Proprio tale revisione è lo scopo che questo fascicolo di «Teoria» si prefigge, raccogliendo contributi provenienti non solo dalle scienze filosofiche, ma anche da quelle sociali, psicologiche, letterarie e artistiche, allo scopo di fornire una ricostruzione dello stato dell’arte sulle definizioni correnti di natura e sulle implicazioni di tali definizioni per le concrete pratiche nelle quali il riferimento alla natura è esplicitamente o implicitamente presente.  Ma vi è anche un ulteriore scopo: quello di far emergere una serie di spunti di riflessione per correggere, modificare ovvero anche sostituire le definizioni  e le concezioni correnti di natura con altre più adeguate a costituire un riferimento efficace per i problemi del presente .

Fra i temi sui quali si accetta la proposizione di contributi, si possono menzionare non esaustivamente i seguenti:
Il concetto di natura
Rappresentazioni della natura
Natura e cultura, natura/cultura
Natura, ambiente, essere umano
Natura e biotecnologie
Natura e corpi umani
Natura e contesti culturali
Natura e trascendenza
Natura, potere e politica
Natura ‘reale’ e natura ‘virtuale’

Accanto ad alcuni contributi a invito, ne verranno inseriti altri liberamente sottoposti. Chi fosse interessato a sottoporre un contributo dovrà inviare, entro il 31 marzo 2013, un abstract di massimo 1000 parole via mail, agli indirizzi: (Prof. Adriano Fabris) e (Prof. Flavia Monceri), con l’indicazione “Teoria-Ripensare la natura” nella riga dell’oggetto. Gli abstract saranno sottoposti a un processo di peer-review e la risposta relativa all’accettazione o meno della proposta verrà inviata entro il 30 aprile 2013. La redazione si riserva comunque la facoltà di non accettare i contributi definitivi che non corrispondessero agli abstract accettati, o che non superassero l’ulteriore procedura di selezione che verrà compiuta sui contributi definitivi. Si riserva inoltre di chiedere agli autori la revisione dei propri contributi per adeguarli alle valutazioni dei referee e/o agli standard editoriali.

Gli abstract e i contributi potranno essere sottoposti lingua italiana e in lingua inglese. La versione definitiva dovrà pervenire entro il 30/10/2013, per essere sottoposta all’ulteriore processo di revisione: la risposta definitiva sull’accettazione, e sulle eventuali modificazioni richieste, sarà fornita entro il 15/11/2013. I contributi accettati, eventualmente modificati, dovranno essere consegnati entro il 30/11/2013 I contributi dovranno seguire le norme editoriali previste da «Teoria» e reperibili sul suo sito ( e avere una lunghezza compresa frale 7000 e le 8000 parole.

CALL FOR PAPERS – Philosophy and Nature, 7th Duquesne Graduate Conference

Date: February 23, 2013Duquesne University
Location: Duquesne University

Keynote: Adrian Johnston, University of New Mexico & Emory Psychoanalytic Institute

The relation between nomos and physis has occupied a central place in the history of philosophy,  from Aristotelian Physics to contemporary analytic debates on the philosophy of mind.  Moreover, nature, as both an object of knowledge and a public resource, has taken on increasingly urgent  social and political import: the distribution of resources and the impact of climate change have  become central issues in public policy; and, as in the cases of race, sexual difference, and sexual  orientation, legal and social status is often determined in accordance with an appeal to their supposedly biological bases, or, that is, to a commonplace conception of “the natural.”  Thus the  very identity of the human itself is intimately connected to the ways in which nature operates either  on or for us.  This conference invites submissions from all areas of philosophy that are concerned to investigate the ontological, ethical, political, and epistemological status of nature.
To help facilitate this discussion, possible topics include, but are not limited to: nomos & physis in  Ancient philosophy; the relation between God & nature; human freedom & natural determinism; consciousness & cognitive science; the social construction of nature; chaos & vitalism; the necessity or impossibility of causation; the constitutive relationship between humans and nature (realist, idealist, materialist, and/or hybrid positions); phenomenology of/and nature; social constructivist vs. essentialist figurations of identity; politics & the state of nature; the ethical status of animals & the environment; and the biological or social origins of race, sexual difference, and/or sexual orientation.
Submission Procedure
Please prepare submissions for blind review and send to  by Saturday, December 15, 2012.  Submissions should not  exceed 3000 words.  Cover sheets should include name, submission title, email address, and  institutional affiliation.