Category: Conferences, Latest News

CFP Annual Spring Conference of the IPS: “Philosophy in Ireland: Past actualities – present challenges – future potentialities?” 22nd – 24th June 2012

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of the Irish Philosophical Society. In order to celebrate this anniversary, the theme of this year’s IPS spring conference will be devoted to ‘Philosophy in Ireland: Past Actualities, Present Challenges, and Future Potentialities’.

It will take place from the 22nd to 24th June 2012,

at the National University of Ireland / St. Patricks’ College, Maynooth.

Papers that shed light on the contribution of philosophy and, more broadly, of Irish thought, to ethical, spiritual, and political choices in the Irish past are invited. Papers discussing current developments in Irish philosophy, including the work of influential contemporary Irish philosophers and Irish writers of strong philosophical interest, are welcome. Finally, papers which are concerned with possible future developments in Irish philosophy, in particular in ethics and its contribution to social life, aesthetics, metaphysics and the philosophy of language are also invited.

The aim of the conference is not only to celebrate and show how Irish philosophers have in the past influenced philosophical movements and the connections to the present but also to explore links between philosophy and art, especially literature, in which Irish writers have made such a strong contribution internationally, as well as the connection between Ireland and major philosophical thinkers such as Wittgenstein. Postgraduate students are particularly encouraged to submit papers for a special postgraduate research session.

Topics of interest for this Conference include, but are not limited to the following:

1.    History of Irish Philosophy and Irish Thought:

§       The Philosophy of John Scottus Eriugena, Richard FitzRalph, and Peter of Ireland

§       Observation of Nature and Irish Thought: Robert Boyle

§       Irish Enlightenment and its counter movements: John Toland, Edmund Burke, and George Berkeley

§       Wittgenstein in Ireland


2.    Contemporary Developments in Irish Philosophy and in Irish Thought:

§       The Philosophy of William Desmond, Richard Kearney

§       General developments in fields of ethics, metaphysics, philosophy of language

§       Philosophy and literature (Beckett and Existentialism, Joyce and Deconstruction, Heaney and Heidegger)

§       Philosophy and Film (Neil Jordan; …)

§       Philosophical traditions in Ireland (phenomenology, analytic…)


The sessions on individual topics will be followed by a Round Table Discussion on Sunday (24th June), addressing questions pertaining to the present state and challenges of philosophy in Ireland as well as possible contributions not only to philosophical scholarship but also to the wider sense of engaging with current issues and future challenges by contributing to new visions needed to respond to what President Michael D. Higgins has called the “intellectual crisis in society”.

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

Prof. David Berman, Trinity College Dublin

Prof. William Desmond, Catholic University Leuven


A detailed schedule will follow in due course, after selection process for received abstracts has been completed.



Abstracts & Selection Criteria

Authors are invited to send abstracts (maximum 1 page) of their papers (approximately 30 minutes presentation time, 20 minutes for postgraduates) on topics indicated above, or on themes of their own choosing relevant to the Conference’s topic.


The Editorial Board welcome abstracts from academics in the relevant disciplines and departments as well as independent researchers working on topics relevant to the conference.


Schedule for Submissions:

-       Abstracts: One page (c. 600 words maximum) and CVs (maximum of 2 pages,

including any personal statement and/or listing of publications) to be received by 6th April 2012.

-       Abstracts to be short-listed by the Editorial Board and papers invited by 30th April 2012.

Please send abstracts (and any queries) to Conference Co-ordinators:


Susan Gottlöber, Philosophy Department, National University of Ireland Maynooth


Cyril McDonnell, Philosophy Department, National University of Ireland Maynooth



Cost & Accommodation

Registration Cost: 25 EUR

Concession (Student, Senior): 15 EUR

IPS Member: 15 EUR



There is reasonably priced On-Campus Accommodation available; we would strongly advise that you book early. See:

All speakers and participants at the Round Table Discussion are invited to the Conference Dinner on Sat, June 23rd 2012.


Publication of Proceedings:

Within 12 months of the event, a special edition of the Yearbook of the Irish Philosophical Society will be published, according to normal academic process of double-blind peer review, comprising selected papers presented at the conference and/ or received.


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