Nature and World in the History of German Philosophy

Friday, 11 August 2017 | Macquarie UNiversity| Board Room, Level 5, Australian Hearing Hub

Classical German philosophy chiseled out a set of vocabulary that continues to inform our senses of disciplinary boundaries of modern academic research.  In addition to coining terms like “aesthetics,” “psychology,”  and “teleology,” it is first in the textbooks of German school philosophy that we find the debates in seventeenth-century philosophy philosophy of mind schematised according to a taxonomic distinction between idealists, materialists, and dualists.  Even those who are not familiar with the nuances of the history of eighteenth-century German philosophy, in short, are likely to work within the constraints of some of the concepts it has left behind.  In this workshop, we will investigate more closely how two concepts in particular were articulated in this period: “nature” and “world.”  We will consider both how these concepts were distinguished in the eighteenth century and the legacy of that distinction in the modern world, as well as considering how conceptions of “nature” and “world” changed in the history of German philosophy.


9:00 Raoni Padui (St John's College) and Michael Olson (Macquarie)

"Nature and World in Eighteenth-Century German Philosophy"

10:00 Morning Coffee

10:15 Jennifer Mensch (Western Sydney)

"Songs of Nature: From Philosophy of Language to Philosophical Anthropology in Herder and Humboldt"

11:15 Paul Redding (Sydney)

"Nature, World, and the Whereabouts of Ends: Aristotle, Kant, and Hegel"

12:15 Lunch

1:15 Simon Lumsden (UNSW)

"Sustainable Development is a Dead-End: Hegel, the Logic of the Understanding, and Ecological Crisis"

2:15 Jean-Philippe Deranty (Macquarie)

"Feuerbach on Nature and World"

3:15 Afternoon Coffee

3:30 Dennis Schmidt (Western Sydney)

"Thank Goodness for the Atmosphere: On  the Starry Sky and the Moral Law"


Registration is free and open to the public.  If you'd like to attend, please email michael.olson@mq.edu.au to register your interest.

This workshop is supported by the Faculty of Arts at Macquarie University.