International Conference “Thinking in crisis”
Vilnius, European Humanities University → 28–30th June 2022
In June 2022, the European Humanities University hosts an international conference on the question: Is there a solution of the current crisis of thought?
Today everyone is talking about a crisis: from ecology, international relations and liberal democracy to the economy and crisis of values and education. The current health crisis may perhaps also be regarded as a symbolic expression of the state of humanity.
All crises stem from something more fundamental than what they explicitly demonstrate. They arise from a crisis of the mind or thinking.
The conference participants will be asked to assess the causes, the depth and the nature of this crisis. The conference organisers suggest that this crisis is absolutely radical. It means that 1) it refers to the vital roots of humanity and raises the question of the existence and survival of humanity, 2) its solution is impossible either because it is yet unknown or not implemented.
The conference participants will be invited to evaluate this hypothesis and reflect on what solution to the current crisis of thinking there could potentially be. In their hypothesis, the conference organisers do not call for succumbing to paralysing pessimism; on the contrary, they rely on the premise that is repeatedly reiterated in human history and states that the impossible can become possible. A radical crisis can be a part of creation of a new world.
In other words, the conference organisers encourage the participants to reflect on the following idea of Friedrich Hölderlin in the context of today’s state of humanity: “But where the danger is, also grows the saving power”. They also invite to think on the words of an unknown author, quoted in the book Crowds and Power of Elias Canetti and dated August 23, 1939: „It’s too late now. If I were a true poet, I should have been able to prevent war.”
In the 20th century, many authors thought about the crisis of thinking in Europe and the world. Their reflections constitute an invaluable trove of ideas. Have we anything new to say? Do we need it? Could it be that we need not more thoughts about life, but rather the life force itself? Where do we find it, and how does it manifest and communicate itself?
Times listed below are Vilnius time
Conference opening speech by Rector of European Humanities University prof. Sergej Ignatov.
Moderator: Jolanta Bieliauskaitė (European Humanities university, Lithuania)
Anatoli Mikhailov (European Humanities University, Lithuania)
Vital criteria in critical times
Frédéric Worms (École Normale Supérieure, France)
Simona Merkinaitė (Vilnius university, Lithuania)
Eugenio Agostino Parati (Maugeri Scientific Clinical Institutes of Milan, Italy), Marta Vassallo (University of Insubria, Italy)
Roger Berkowitz (Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College, USA)
Moderator: Anatoli Mikhailov (European Humanities University, Lithuania)
Friedrich-Wilhelm von Herrmann (Germany)
What is the role of the intellectual today? How do we “go beyond” the Machenschaft in which we are embedded?
Francesco Alfieri (Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Milan, Italy)
Moderator: Simas Čelutka (Vilnius university)
To save the Enlightenment
Chantal Delsol (France Institute, Academy of moral and political sciences, France)
Camille Riquier (Catholic University of Paris, France)
Povilas Aleksandravičius (European Humanities University, Lithuania)
Moderator: Aliaksei Makhnach (European Humanities University, Lithuania)
Povilas AleksandravičiusEuropean Humanities University, Lithuania
Povilas Aleksandravičius is a professor of European Humanities university and an associate professor of Humanities Institute of Mykolas Romeris University. In 2008, he defended a doctoral thesis “Time and Eternity according Saint Thomas Aquinas and Martin Heidegger” at the Catholic University of Paris (Institut Catholique de Paris) and The University of Poitiers (Université de Poitiers) (France). He is an author of several monographies, the most important are “Directions and Future of European Thinking” (2015) and “Europe as way of thinking: foundations of open society” (2019). The research fields of P. Aleksandravičius are philosophical anthropology, social philosophy, European identity, relation between philosophy and theology, philosophical tradition of mysticism, Bergson’s philosophy.
Francesco AlfieriUniversità Vita-Salute San Raffaele, Italy
Francesco Alfieri is Professor of Philosophy at the Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele (Milan). From 2008 to 2014 he held seminars on the phenomenology of Edith Stein and Hedwig Conrad-Martius at the University of Bari and from 2012 to 2019 he was Professor of Phenomenology of Religion at the Pontificia Universitas Lateranensis. In addition, since 2020 he has been appointed Archivist of the legacy of philosopher Emanuele Severino.
Roger BerkowitzHannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College, USA
Roger Berkowitz is Founder and Academic Director of the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities and Professor of Politics, Philosophy, and Human Rights at Bard College. Professor Berkowitz authored The Gift of Science: Leibniz and the Modern Legal Tradition (Harvard, 2005; Fordham, 2010; Chinese Law Press, 2011). Berkowitz is editor of The Perils of Invention: Lying, Technology, and the Human Condition (forthcoming 2020) and co-editor of Thinking in Dark Times: Hannah Arendt on Ethics and Politics (2009), The Intellectual Origins of the Global Financial Crisis (2012) and Artifacts of Thinking: Reading Hannah Arendt's Denktagebuch (2017). His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The American Interest, Bookforum, The Forward, The Paris Review Online, Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, and many other publications. He is the winner of the 2019 Hannah Arendt Prize for Political Thought given by the Heinrich Böll Foundation in Bremen, Germany.
Simas ČelutkaVilnius University, Lithuania
Dr. Simas Čelutka is a philosopher and lecturer at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University. He wrote a PhD on the relationship between politics and morality and is currently developing this theme further, mainly focusing on Hannah Arendt‘s political thought. Simas studied philosophy at Vilnius University, intellectual history and history of political thought at UCL, Queen Mary universities (London, UK). His scholarly interests include political and moral philosophy, political phenomenology and intellectual history.
Chantal DelsolFrance Institute, Academy of moral and politics sciences, France
Chantal Delsol is professor in political philosophy in the Paris-Est University 1990-2015, she created the Center of research Hannah Arendt and a program of cooperation with mid-Eastern countries (Poland, Hungary, Romania and others).
Writer (works of philosophy, essays, novels, translated in fifteen languages). Regular columnist (Le Figaro and others). Director of collection at the Table Ronde Editions (1992-2003) and Le Cerf Editions (2005 -). Member of the Institute of France (Academy of moral and political Sciences) since 2007.
Friedrich-Wilhelm von HerrmannGermany
Friedrich-Wilhelm von Herrmann is a German philosopher, known as a major figure in phenomenological and hermeneutics research and an expert on Heidegger's thought. Von Hermanns hermeneutics and reflection represents the most fundamental and critical reflection of the concept of phenomenology as it was used byHeidegger and Husserl.
Simona MerkinaiteVilnius university, Lithuania
Ph.D. at Institute of International Relations and Political Science/Vilnius University focused on Hannah Arendt’s notion of the political, specifically the relationship between political action and moral judgment. Research interests include the theory of contemporary democracy, totalitarianism, political action, and moral considerations. Co-contributor to New Eastern Europe, Bernardinai.lt, and other publications.
Latest academic publication: Evil and Politics: The Possibility of Response to Evil and Its Limits. The Case of Eichmann.
Anatoli MikhailovEuropean Humanities University, Lithuania
Anatoli Mikhailov is a professor the Department of Humanities and Arts of
European Humanity University in Vilnius. He defended his doctoral dissertation on
the philosophy of Martin Heidegger in Jena.
His recently published articles are: The Language of Art: A Savings Power. (Yale, 2016); Being and Language. (Vilnius, 2020); European Heritage as a Source of Crisis and as a Hope (in Russian). (Vilnius, 2022); Human Being in the world. (In Russian). (Riga, 2022)
The research fields of Anatoli Mikhailov are: German intellectual tradition,
hermeneutics, philosophy of language, M. Heidegger's philosophy.
Eugenio Agostino ParatiMaugeri Scientific Clinical Institutes of Milan, Italy
Eugenio Agostino Parati is Italian neurologist and researcher, appointed member Italian National Commission on Stem Cell Research Ministry of Health, 2001. Doctor of Medicine, University Milan, 1978. Specialization in neurology, University Milan, 1982.
Eugenio Agostino Parati has been listed as a noteworthy neurologist, researcher by Marquis Who's Who.
Camille RiquierCatholic University of Paris, France
Camille Riquier is a professor and dean of Faculty of Philosophy of Catholic University of Paris. In 2007, he defended a doctoral thesis on Bergson’s philosophy at University Paris IV (Sorbonne).
He is an author of several monographies, the most important are “Archeology of Bergson” (2009), “Philosophy of Péguy” (2009), “We no longer know how to believe” (2020).
The research fields of C. Riquier are metaphysics, phenomenology, spiritualism, philosophy of the person, Bergson’s philosophy.
Marta VassalloUniversity of Insubria, Italy
Marta Vassallo is a PhD candidate in Clinical and Experimental Medicine and Medical Humanities at the University of Insubria in Varese, Italy. She is a member of the Research Centre for Clinical Ethics (CREC). She is also also a research collaborator at IRCCS Maugeri in Milan. Previously she achieved a MA in language and Mind, linguistics and cognitive studies at the University of Siena and before that she achieved a MA in Anthropology also at the University of Siena; her BA is in Philosophy. Her research revolves around cognitive philosophy and philosophy of science: in particular, she is focusing on updating the theoretical and experimental frames of Connectionism.
Moreover, she is currently teaching in a cycle of seminars in Neurolinguistics and translation and the University of Insubria, and she is carrying on her empirical research at the IRCCS Maugeri in Milan.
Frédéric WormsÉcole normale supérieure, France
Frédéric Worms is Professor of Philosophy at the superior teachers’ training college (Ecole Normale Supérieure) where he manages the Center for the Study of Contemporary French philosophy (CIEPFC).
The work of Frédéric Worms is centered on the history of philosophy, where he is a recognized specialist of Bergson and has also developed a general hypothesis of the history of philosophy as applied to diverse aspects of 20th century French philosophy.
Moreover, Worms has worked on general, moral and political philosophy.
Grand Prix Moron de Philosophie de l’Institut de France, 2019.
Professorship Habilitation (2002, Université de Clermont-Ferrand)