Recognizing the call for critical reflection and multidisciplinary research into the human condition, a group of inspired faculty members representing sociology, psychology, women’s studies, political science, literature and film studies, has founded The Human Condition Series (a title inspired by Hannah Arendt’s classic, The Human Condition)”. A constitution was drafted and signed by the founding members on June 1st, 2007.
The express purpose of the series is to examine the fundamental problems and contradictions in human actions, such as the life-negating consequences of unprecedented economic prosperity—namely war, natural degradation, insecurity, and terror. These objectives are defined by thematic topics that are deeply embedded in the current unfolding realities of our contemporary world. In 2007 we invited critical presentations and research on the question of new forms of Empire. In 2008 we expanded the size of the conference, and examined the complex phenomenon of Terror. In 2010 we set our sights on Eros, and we are already planning for upcoming events on Home, and Exile.
The organizers seek to ensure the utmost academic integrity by designing the conferences with a broad scope and program that will accomplish a transdisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary examination of the series’ selected theme in three ways: roundtable exchanges, disciplinary cross fertilization, and multidisciplinary subtopics.
First, the program plans a series of individual keynote talks and interviews with internationally renowned scholars whose acknowledged expertise resides in diverse disciplines and research. In the program these scholars are also scheduled to come together in a roundtable discussion based on topical questions from the series theme that requires critical interchanges between different disciplines, perspectives, and experiences. All talks, interviews and roundtables are filmed and transcribed for both educational (libraries) and publishing purposes.
The second way in which the conference fosters linkages between appropriate disciplines or fields is by emphasizing thematic topics. The sessions for presenters, panels, and workshops are not divided by discipline and/or field, but are themed to ensure that a variety of scholars and researchers engage in an exchange of scholarship from different disciplines and fields. As well, the conference’s results (keynote lectures, transcribed interviews and roundtables, as well as selected papers from the presenters) provides the basis for a collection of publishable research materials produced by the interchange between presenters of different disciplines and fields.
Third, we enhance transdisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary exchange and research in relation to the series’ designated theme is by ensuring that the sub-themes that designate the concurrent sessions bring together panels and presenters of different scholarly and artistic backgrounds. Sessions under the organizing sub-themes brings together presenters with diverse perspectives who are able to exchange different types and forms of research on a similar topic.
The conference series contributes to progressive research both in Canada and globally by bringing together a variety of international and national scholars and researchers who engage in critical and creative exchanges based on their current projects and work. It is our intention to make The Human Condition Series central Ontario’s premier conference by drawing on the region’s growing academic community, and increasing their visibility within the broader global community; as such, we feature Ontario’s most prominent scholars who are doing research in each of the conference series’ themes. The conference series will also contribute to the region by bringing Canadian scholars and students in direct contact with the work of some of the world’s most internationally renowned experts in their fields related to the series’ topics. These contacts and exchanges between Canadian and international scholars will, in turn, contribute to the ways in which the series’ thematic topics are treated in international debates and research projects.
The Centre for the Study of the Human Condition
And The Human Condition Series
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