Conditions and Problems of Contemporary Philosophy

author: Alenka Zupančič Žerdin, Institute of Philosophy, Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts
produced by: S.TV.A.d.o.o.
published: Aug. 14, 2013,   recorded: June 2013,   views: 3299

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The »Conditions and Problems of Contemporary Philosophy« program is continuing its hitherto research work at the Institute of Philosophy, and thus in the five year period from 2004 to 2008 it will be focused on three main themes:

  1. Investigation of the transformation of traditional philosophical categories (being, truth, subject, object, will, man, life, etc.) in postmodern philosophical thought. The research work will try to situate the conceptual transformation in postmodern philosophical thought and the rise of the new problematic within the wider frame of philosophical, scientific, epistemological, cultural, as well as politico-economic processes in the contemporary world, including Slovenia. The aim of the research work is to elaborate an answer to the question whether and in what way, under the conditions of a globalized world, philosophy as a field of pure thought is still possible today. Special emphasis will be placed on: the conceptual and methodological connections of postmodern philosophy with contemporary social and human sciences, particularly the conditions and results of the encounter with the psychoanalysis of Freud and Lacan, as well as with linguistics, epistemology, jurisprudence, history and anthropology; an analysis of separating the problematics of subject and subjectivization in postmodern philosophy (Badiou, Lyotard, Foucault, Negri, Agamben, Derrida, Habermas, etc.); rethinking of the status of ethics and of ethical discourses in philosophy and the connection of philosophy with the contemporary sciences; a new consideration of the political as a consequence of the breakdown of classic notions of universality, of the social link and of community; rethinking new technologies, cyberspace and the virtualization of space itself; a critical reconsideration of vitalistic and neo-darwinist currents in contemporary philosophy, biophilosophy and biotechnology, ethology, new conceptions of body and life, etc.
  2. An inquiry into the philosophically relevant history of political thought and research on the history of the philosophical and scientific formation of the modern world. In investigating the history of political thought, special emphasis will be placed on the conceptualization of power in the tradition of Western thought, the articulation of the concept of state and hitherto poorly investigated connections between sovereignty, religion, and the rise of trade, economy, and world war. A particular part of the research work consists of the deconstruction of historiographic revisions of the memory of the Nazi and fascist occupation of Slovenia (1941-45), the partisan resistance movement, collaboration activities and post-war mass killings, and an analysis of the interpretation of history as trauma. The aim of the research work is to contribute to a clarification of various problems: historical memory and historical trauma, civil and religious war, the formation of a political space and the rise of representative democracy, European colonial and society-forming projects, and the formation of an interstate system and supranational identities (Empire, Europe). The basic departure point for the investigation of the philosophical and scientific history of the formation of the modern world will be that philosophical and purely scientific viewpoints regarding this process are inseparable, and that medieval philosophy presents an intersection point of the ancient episteme and modern philosophy. Within this framework, special emphasis will be placed on the relationship between philosophy, theology, and science on one hand, and the epistemological, philosophical, and scientific transformations of the high medieval age, renaissance, and early modern age, on the other. The aim of the scientific research work is to expose those epistemological elements which separate modern from pre-modern philosophy and science.
  3. An investigation of philosophical aesthetics and the philosophical problematic of visuality

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