YSPG1 : Young Scholars Pragmatism Conference 1
January 18/19 2018 - Paris

Young Scholars Pragmatism Conference


   Charles S. Peirce              William James             John Dewey                  Jane Addams              Mary Parker Follett      Geroge Herbert Mead 

Young Scholars Pragmatism Conference
January 18/19 2018, Paris

From Interactions to Institutions:
Pragmatism and Collective Experience


Keynote speakers:
Prof. Rosa Maria Calcaterra (University of Roma-III)
Commentator: Prof. Pierre Steiner (Université de Technologie de Compiègne)

Prof. Hans Joas (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin / University of Chicago)
Commentator: Prof. Roberto Frega (CNRS/CMB Berlin)

For the past twenty years, pragmatism has been at the center of many scholarly events in Europe and worldwide: conferences, seminars, summer schools, symposiums ; publications of articles, monographs and book translations. One of the common features of these events is their willingness to study pragmatism from an interdisciplinary point of view. Social and political scientists as well as psychologists are joining philosophers in their efforts to understand what pragmatism is and what it means to be a pragmatist today. This interdisciplinary approach can be found among the most recent events organized. Since 2012, the European Pragmatism Conference gathers more than one hundred researchers from various disciplines every other year ; in the US, the Summer Institute of American Philosophy focuses each year on one or several pragmatist authors and also welcomes presentations from sociologists or historians, the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy sets every year a theme that encourages many different points of view to converge.
      On a smaller scale, many events are organized locally to promote the discussion between pragmatists from different disciplines: in 2014 Tallinn University of Technology hosted a conference on the application of Peirce's philosophy at different levels, from cognitive and computive sciences to psychology and anthropology; in 2015, a conference was held between philosophers and political theorists at the EHESS on “Pragmatism and the Political”; in 2017, neuroscientists and philosophers gathered to study embodied cognition in pragmatism at Università di Parma. Many other ongoing events study the thoughts of contemporary pragmatists – e.g. Pierre Steiner, Cheryl Misak, Russel Goodman, Richard Shusterman, etc.
      Inspired by such events, we would like to create new events favoring discussion between young researchers studying pragmatism. The aim of such events is to create an international web of young scholars working on various aspects of pragmatism. We intend to make the Young Scholars Pragmatism Conference a yearly event, that will not necessarily take place in France.

A conference for young researchers

Conference attendance is open to all members of the profession. Presenters will be young scholars, typically early-career philosophers (graduate students, post-docs, untenured faculty, independent scholars, etc.), but also young researchers in social sciences. Each presentation will be followed by a brief commentary made by one of the attendees, consisting of remarks and questions about the argument presented. Although commentators and audience members will be encouraged to present objections to papers, the conference theme will be "constructive engagement", where the primary intent is to help authors to improve their work (viz. by not only raising objections, but offering and discussing possible solutions) to make it suitable for publication. The main idea of the sessions is to promote a prolific interaction between participants and speakers.

An international conference

The conference's purpose is to attract young researchers from all over the world. Our organizing and scientific committee is composed of young researchers from four different countries – France, Canada, Spain and Italy. The official language of the conference is English. The presentations will reflect the diversity of the current worldwide research in pragmatism, from applied ethics to political theory, from the history of pragmatism to the more “analytical” branch of pragmatism. Proposals have been selected for the quality of their argument as well as their methodology, in order to include a plurality of topics and subjects.

A theme

We would like the discussions to be beneficial to every attendee and to include all participants in the exchanges. One theme will be at the center of every session; the theme will be restricted enough to give the opportunity for everyone to engage in the conversations, and it will be broad enough to have a variety of points of views that confront each other. The theme “From Interactions to Institutions: Pragmatism and Collective Experience” is not only open to political philosophers but also welcome political and social scientists to join the discussion, without excluding researchers working specifically on concepts such as collective action or interaction and those who are studying pragmatism from a non-political point of view. 

Two keynote speakers

Professors Hans Joas (Humboldt University, Berlin) and Rosa Maria Calcaterra (Roma Tre University) will join the conference to present their most recent research. We thus aim to give young researchers the opportunity to discuss their work with more experienced researchers to create an intergenerational web of pragmatism studies.

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