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Looking for Rousseau

International conference celebrating the 300th anniversary of Jean-Jacques Rousseau

2012.09.17 | Knud Holt Nielsen

Date Fri 09 Nov Sat 10 Nov
Time 13:00    17:00
Location Department of Education (DPU), Aarhus University Campus Emdrup, A 220, Celebration Hall (Festsalen), Tuborgvej 164, Copenhagen
Registration has closed

For many years Rousseau was indeed a lonely wanderer in the outskirts of the history of philosophy – never really out, and never really in. Du contrat social has always been a standard work of political philosophy and contractualist theory, but the rest of his oeuvre, even his main claim to fame, Émile ou de l’éducation, has led a somewhat obscure existence in the scholarly world of academic philosophy. His ideas have inspired thinkers, writers, and artists, but they still remain elusive.

Recent years’ growing focus on education, the allegedly universal remedy for every ill of man and society, has highlighted the position of Rousseau in philosophy of education, political and social theory, history and critique of civilization etc. What is his contribution, his lesson to us? His thinking refuses a fixed place within the system of academic disciplines, it resists non-contradictory interpretations. Maybe we are wise to leave him out of the textbook and go looking for him instead. Join us!

Invited guest speakers:

  • Roland Reichenbach, Basel
  • Andreas Gruschka, Frankfurt
  • Peter Wivel, Berlin
  • Henrik Palsmar, Copenhagen

And from DPU, Aarhus University:

  • Anne-Marie Eggert Olsen,
  • Carsten Fogh Nielsen,
  • Hans Siggaard Jensen,
  • Kirsten Klercke,
  • Lars-Henrik Schmidt,
  • Ove Korsgaard

See presentation of speakers and papers here


Conference Fee: 450 DKK (300 DKK for members Society of Philosophy of Education)

 Conference Dinner: 160 DKK

Fee includes refreshments all through the conference and a sandwich lunch on Saturday

Electronic registration with online payment click here


Friday, 9. November

13: Welcome

13.30 Roland Reichenbach: Jean-Jacques Rousseau and the Regulative Idea of Authenticity

14.30 Andreas Gruschka: Negative Erziehung und die Negation der Erziehung

15.30 Coffee/refreshments

16.00-17.30 Plenary discussion

18.00 Henrik Palsmar: Bartering love in Arcadia -  music by Rousseau

19.15 Conference dinner


Saturday, 10. November

09.30 Get-together with coffee/tee/croissant

10.00 – 13.00: Parallel sessions: Rousseau at DPU

Session 1

Anne-Marie Eggert Olsen: Rousseau juge de Platon

Lars-Henrik Schmidt: The Nature of Rousseau's Narcissism

Kirsten Klercke: The Exclusion of Feeling and Fantasy in Rousseau’s Émile


Session 2

Carsten Fogh Nielsen: The Origin of Evil? Morality, immorality and sociality in Rousseau and Kant

Hans Siggaard Jensen: David Gauthier and Rousseau viewed in a totalizing perspective

Ove Korsgaard: From Rousseau's Advice to Poland to Habermas' advice to the European Union 

13.00-14.00 Lunch

14.00 Peter Wivel: Rousseau on History

15.00-17.00: Discussion and end of conference.

17.15-18.15 General meeting 2012 in the Society of Philosophy of Education.

Conference, Arts