Evil: Interdisciplinary Explorations

Hell by Bosch


Proposals are invited for the conference ‘Evil: Interdisciplinary Explorations’ to be held in Oxford on 27 June 2014

Evil is a recurrent theme across diverse accounts of human experience. But despite its ubiquity – and, in fact, sometimes precisely because of its ubiquity – human beings perpetually struggle to come to terms with it, whether individually or collectively. In academia, the idea of evil has provoked widespread reflection in the humanities and beyond. Whether the medium is philosophical treatise, theological doctrine, historical analysis, literary expression or something else besides, examining the theme of evil is a necessary aspect of exploring representations of humanity.

This conference is intended to bring together thinkers from a variety of disciplines and traditions, in order to illuminate this shared feature of human experience and academic reflection. It seeks to provoke dialogue between heterogeneous approaches to the issue, from attempts at definition in moral philosophy to those modern philosophers who seek to go beyond evil, to literary, theological, and historical approaches.

Keynote Speakers:

  • Terry Eagleton (University of Lancaster): ‘On Evil’
  • Pamela Sue Anderson (University of Oxford): ‘A Hermeneutic Phenomenology of Evil’

Papers will be 30 minutes plus 15 minutes for discussion. Postgraduate students are invited to present 20 minute papers to be presented in joint panels followed by discussion. In addition to individual papers, suggestions for panel topics are welcome. Possible themes and subjects include (but are not limited to): moral philosophy, perceptions and representations of evil across history, evil as a cultural phenomenon, the problem of evil, theodicy, the banality of evil, evil in art and literature.

The deadline for submissions is 30 March 2014. Please E-MAIL an abstract (max 300 words) as an attachment to Kate Kirkpatrick and Marieke Mueller at EvilinOxford@gmail.com. For panel submissions, please submit both an abstract for the whole panel and abstracts for each individual paper.

Presented papers will be considered for publication. The conference fee is to be confirmed but will not exceed £15. To request further information or to register as a delegate, please email EvilinOxford@gmail.com.

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