Impressions of the Second Biennial Conference

This part of Philosophy is in the same situation as the public roads,
on which all men travel, and go to and fro,
and some are enjoying a pleasant stroll and others are quarrelling,
but they make no progress
Hobbes, De Cive, epistle dedicatory

From 14-16 May 2018, over 35 researchers from across the world came together in the pedestrian city centre of Amsterdam for the Second Biennial Conference of the European Hobbes Society. It was a joy to see quite a few new faces amidst many familiar ones.

The conference was thematically structured around Hobbes’s De cive. No less than thirteen papers carefully mapped the highlights of that text, drawing our attention to inspiring vistas and at times feuding with extant interpretations blocking the road to greater insight. The conference doubled as a manuscript workshop for the Cambridge Critical Guide to De Cive, edited by Robin Douglass and Johan Olsthoorn. The sharp yet constructive discussions will no doubt bolster the quality of the chapters to that volume. Four new members were sworn in to the executive committee of the society during the general meeting — welcome to the team!

The full program can be found here.

We are exceedingly grateful to the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, King’s College London, and the University of Amsterdam Challenges to Democratic Representation Research Group for their generous financial and infrastructural support. Thanks also goes out to all participants, both for the pleasant intellectual stroll and the interpretive progress made.

The EHS is right now more vibrant than ever. A host of smaller workshops have been organized under the auspices of the society during the last year and more are in the pipeline. We continue to welcome initiatives, including proposals to set up the third biennial conference sometime in 2020. The journey we have jointly embarked on has been incredible so far; long may it carry on!

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Robert P Benedict Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy

The Robert P Benedict Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy at Boston University will be delivered by Kinch Hoekstra. These lectures will take three different approaches to Hobbes as a philosopher of Politics. The first will focus on Hobbes’s engagement with the tradition of ‘politic history’ and his attempt to influence politics via history, especially in his edition of Thucydides. The second lecture will argue that for Hobbes philosophy was not simply a way to understand politics, but was itself political. And the final lecture will ask how Hobbes’s philosophical positions were challenged by the unfolding of history in his own time, with a focus on Behemoth, his history of the English civil war.

Kinch Hoekstra is the Chancellor’s Professor of Political Science and Law and Affiliated Professor of Philosophy and Classics at the University of California, Berkeley. He was previously in the Faculty of Philosophy at the University of Oxford, where he was Fellow and Tutor in Philosophy and Classics at Balliol College. Most of his work has been on the history of classical, renaissance, and early modern philosophy.

See this page for more information.

Benedict Poster 2018 final_11x17

Programme of the International Hobbes Association sessions at the APA

The programme of the International Hobbes Association sessions at the American Philosophical Association is now available. The American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division meetings will take place in Savannah Georgia, on January 3-6, 2018. The Hobbes sessions include presentations by Eleanor Curran, Jan Narveson, Christopher Buckman, Paul Garofalo, Stewart Duncan, Elad Carmel, Shane D. Courtland, and Daniel Collette. The full programme can be found here.

Second EHS Biennial Conference (Amsterdam, May 14-16, 2018)

Provisional programme:

Monday 14th May, 2018

09:30-10:00 Welcome and registration, with coffee and pastries
10:00-10:15 Opening talk by the organisers

Session 1:
10:15-11:15 Deborah Baumgold (Oregon) – ‘Dating On the Citizen’
11:25-12:25 Kinch Hoekstra & Nicholas Gooding (UC Berkeley) – ‘Hobbes’s philosophical anthropology: natural sociability’
12:25-13:45 Lunch, served in the Main Library

Session 2:
13:45-14:45 Susanne Sreedhar (Boston University) – ‘The right of nature and the right to all things’
14:55-15:55 Michael LeBuffe (Otago) – ‘Motivation and the good’

Session 3: 
16:15-17:15 Laurens van Apeldoorn (Leiden) – ‘Rex est Populus’: the sovereign and the state’
17:15-17:45 General meeting of the European Hobbes Society (optional)
19:00 Conference dinner, venue TBA

Tuesday 15th May

Session 4:
10:00-11:00 Sophie Smith (Oxford) – ‘Hobbes’s theory of the state: civitas, respublica, and On the Citizen’
11:10-12:10 Michael J. Green (Pomona) – ‘Personation, authorization, and group agency in On the Citizen’
12:10-13:30 Lunch, served in the Main Library

Session 5:
13:30-14:30 Johann P. Sommerville (Wisconsin-Madison) – ‘On the Citizen’s views on religion and church-state relations in historical context’
14:40-15:40 A.P. Martinich (Texas) – ‘Sovereign-making and biblical covenants’

Session 6:
16:00-17:00 Thomas Holden (USCB) – ‘Religious passions’
17:10-18:10 Alison McQueen (Stanford) – ‘Hobbes’s scriptural arguments in On the Citizen’
19:00 Informal dinner, venue TBA

Wednesday 16th May

Session 7:
9:30-10:30 Rosemarie Wagner (UC Berkeley) – ‘Legal obligation and punishment in On the Citizen’
10:40-11:40 Ioannis Evrigenis (Tufts) – ‘The political economy of On the Citizen’
11:50-12:50 S.A. Lloyd (USC) – ‘Sociability and motivation in On the Citizen’
13:00 Concluding lunch; venue TBA

The conference is generously supported by the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Amsterdam Centre for Political Thought (ACPT) and the Challenges to Democratic Representation Research Group at the University of Amsterdam.

For further information or queries please contact the conference convenors:

Johan Olsthoorn (Amsterdam/Leuven): j.c.a.olsthoorn@uva.nl

Eva Odzuck (Erlangen-Nürnberg): eva.odzuck@fau.de

Robin Douglass (King’s College London) robin.douglass@kcl.ac.uk

CFP: Hobbes after Leviathan: Beyond Leviathan? (Padova, Feb 15-16, 2018)

Papers are invited on Thomas Hobbes’s later writings (after 1651, with particular attention to Dialogue, Behemoth, and the Latin version of Leviathan), especially (but not exclusively) on the following topics:

– Political Theory
– Legal Theory and Legal History
– Images of History
– Theology

The papers will be discussed at a workshop to be held 15-16 February 2018 at the University of Padova, by the Department of Political Science, Law and International Relationships (SPGI), the Department of Historical and Geographic Sciences and the Ancient World (DiSSGeA), and the Departement of Philosophy, Sociology, Pedagogy and Applied Psychology (FISPPA), under the auspices of the European Hobbes Society.

Keynote lectures:

PATRICIA SPRINGBORG (Humboldt Universität zu Berlin)
LUC FOISNEAU (EHESS-CNRS, Paris)

Format of the workshop:
Papers will be pre-circulated. There is an hour for the discussion of each, divided as follows:
• Five minutes for the author to introduce their paper. It is assumed that those attend-ing have read the paper in advance.
• A short (five-ten minutes) response from an allocated respondent.
• Brief opportunity for the author to reply.
• Questions.
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PRESENT A PAPER, PLEASE SEND A TITLE AND A SHORT ABSTRACT (NO MORE THAN 250 WORDS) BY FRIDAY 8TH DECEMBER 2017 TO MAURO.FARNESICAMELLONE@UNIPD.IT

We ask that papers are ready for circulation by Wednesday 31th January 2018 to enable at-tendees to read them in advance.
The attendance at the conference is completely free for everybody (no conference fee).
The Conference Committee:
Mauro Farnesi Camellone, Giovanni Fiaschi, Maurizio Merlo, Mario Piccinini

Call for Abstracts: International Hobbes Association at the APA Eastern 2018

The International Hobbes Association will be sponsoring two sessions at the American Philosophical Association 2018 EASTERN Division meetings, January 3-6 in Savannah, Georgia. You are invited to submit an abstract for a paper presentation. Papers selected for presentation will also be considered for publication in Hobbes Studies.

By August 1, 2017, please electronically submit your abstract (400 word maximum) to, IHA Sovereign (Presiding Officer), Rosamond Rhodes, (rosamond.rhodes@mssm.edu).

Workshop at the University of Edinburgh

From 8-9 June 2017, the Edinburgh Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities hosted a workshop on “Thomas Hobbes and Peace”, which was organised in cooperation with the European Hobbes Society.

The workshop featured pre-circulated papers by Deborah Baumgold, Glen Newey, Gabriella Slomp, Patricia Springborg, and Luca Tenneriello, along with parts of a book manuscript by Maximilian Jaede.

The event was aimed at reconsidering Hobbes’s conception of peace, its place in the history of political thought, and its reception today. While all participants highlighted Hobbes’s commitment to peace, there was debate on what precisely Hobbes means by being at peace, and on the interpretation of his ideas in relation to other thinkers. The programme is available here.

We would like to thank all workshop participants for their contributions. The Institute for Advanced Studies, the Global Justice and Global Development Academies at the University of Edinburgh, and the British International Studies Association generously supported the event.

Workshop at the European University Institute

From April 27-28 2017, 20 scholars, based in several different countries, came together at the European University Institute, just outside Florence.  This was our first workshop south of the Alps, and the first  to include an open call for papers.

Alan Cromartie (Reading) delivered a wonderful and wide-ranging keynote speech on Hobbes’s early intellectual development. The eleven other pre-circulated papers covered a range of subjects, from natural religion to conceptions of multitude and obligation. The workshop stood out for having a few very interesting papers on Hobbes’s metaphysics and philosophy of science.

The full program can be downloaded here.

We are very grateful to the EUI’s Max Weber Programme and Department for History and Civilization for having made possible this conference financially. Thanks also go out to all participants and attendees. The next European Hobbes Society workshop will take place in the very near future: June 8-9 in Edinburgh.

 

Firenze workshop 2

Registration: Hobbes workshop 27-28 April, EUI, Florence

This two-day workshop is organised under the aegis of the European Hobbes Society and supported by the European University Institute’s Max Weber Programme and the Department of History and Civilization. Papers will be pre-circulated to registered participants.

On the first day there will be a keynote lecture from Prof. Alan Cromartie (University of Reading) on ‘The Hobbesian project: science, politics, and worship’.

To register, click here.

The programme is available here.

Conference announcement: Thomas Hobbes and Peace (Edinburgh, 8/9 June)

Thomas Hobbes and Peace
Event date:
Thursday 8 June to Friday 9 June
Location:
Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, 2 Hope Park Square, EH8 9NW
An IASH/Susan Manning Workshop organised in cooperation with the European Hobbes Society

The programme will begin at 9.30am on the first day and finish no later than 3pm on the second day. Speakers and discussants will be invited for dinner at a nearby restaurant in the evening of the first day.

Thomas Hobbes is sometimes deemed to be a “philosopher of peace” and remains an important reference point in debates on this subject. His name is invoked in discussions about peace across political theory, international relations theory, peace and conflict studies, and the literature on transitional justice. Hobbes is often seen as a standard bearer of the idea of a coercively induced “negative peace”, which consists of the mere absence of war. Such a condition is contrasted with a “positive peace”, which is realised in a just society. Hobbes is also associated with a misleading dichotomy between conditions of war and peace, which may obscure practices of violence during times of “peace”. Moreover, scholars continue to attribute to him the view that there could be no lasting international peace, because states remain in a “state of war” towards one another. The objective of this interdisciplinary workshop is to question standard interpretations of Hobbes’s political thought by reassessing his ideas on peace from a variety of perspectives.

The workshop features papers by Deborah Baumgold (Oregon), Signy Gutnick Allen (York), Glen Newey (Leiden), Johan Olsthoorn (Leuven), Gabriella Slomp (St Andrews), and Patricia Springborg (HU Berlin). In addition, Maximilian Jaede (Edinburgh) will present parts of his book manuscript titled Thomas Hobbes’s Proto-Liberal Conception of Peace.

The workshop format has been chosen in order to facilitate an intensive discussion among scholars with interests in Hobbes’s conception of peace, its place in the history of political thought, and its reception today. Speakers are encouraged to circulate their papers by 1st June among the registered attendants. In this way, papers do not need to be presented at length at the workshop, maximising the time for an in-depth discussion of each contribution. An allocated respondent will provide comments on each paper, followed by questions and discussion.

Attendance is free of charge but advance registration is required, as refreshments will be served throughout the day. If you wish to attend please email Max Jaede at maximilian.jaede@ed.ac.uk