27 Mar 2003 - 29 Mar 2003 All day Clare College, Cambridge


Clare College, Cambridge

A Conference of the British Society for the History of Philosophy in association with The Institut Français, The Mind Association, CRASSH (University of Cambridge), Taylor and Francis Ltd, Middlesex University, Foundation for Intellectual History, The Theoria and Theory Fund

'Platonism at the Origins of Modernity' will examine the role of the Platonic tradition in the developments associated with the beginnings of modern philosophy. The importance of Platonism in the philosophy of the Renaissance is well attested by historians of philosophy, but the contribution of Platonism to post-Renaissance developments in philosophy has been largely overlooked. And, indeed, Platonism has come to be regarded as not having made any significant contribution to the rise of modern philosophy. By challenging this picture, the conference aims to fill a gap in the history of philosophy, and thereby to change the received account of the rise of modern philosophy.

The focus of the conference will be the philosophy of Platonic tradition in the post-Renaissance, and its relationship to 'modern' philosophy. For the purposes of the conference, Platonism will be understood to include not just the philosophy of Plato but also the other philosophers of the Platonic tradition. Likewise, the conference will adopt the consensus view of the key importance of the seventeenth century for the origins of modern philosophy. The conference will therefore aim to provide an overview of the state of Platonic philosophy at this time, giving prominence to the contribution of Platonism to the philosophy of the seventeenth century. Broadly there will be two aspects to the programme: on the one hand papers on the nature and extent of Platonic philosophy at this time, and, on the other hand, papers on the relevance of Platonism to the canonical philosophers of the seventeenth century. Discussions of particular philosophers and relevant philosophical themes are also invited, as are papers on Platonic interpreters and commentators, on the availability and editions of philosophical texts and papers on the regional diversity of Platonic philosophy. There will be an opportunity for graduate papers.

Keynote speakers will include: Michael Allen ; Jean Louis Bretau ; Stuart Brown; Stephen Clark; James Hankins; Douglas Hedley; Sarah Hutton; Laurent Jaffro; Christia Mercer; Dermot Moran; Wilhelm Schmidt Biggeman; Alain Segonds.

Dr Sarah Hutton, Middlesex University
Dr Douglas Hedley, Clare College, Cambridge



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