University of Geneva, September 12-13, 2012. Uni Bastions, Room B112. Everybody is welcome!
Wednesday, 12 September 2012
9:15-9:30 Opening Remarks by the Organizers
Session 1 Chair: Marcel Weber
9:30-10:30 Margaret Gilbert (Irvine): Two Central Aspects of Association
10:30-11:00 Coffee10:30-11:00 Coffee
11:00-12:00 Anita Konzelmann Ziv (Geneva): Free and Bound Association – "We-mode" from a Rousseauian Perspective
12:00-13:00 Christopher Bertram (Bristol): Rousseau's Two Conceptions of the General Will
Session 2 Chair: Annabelle Lever
14:30-15:30 Hans-Bernhard Schmid (Vienna): We and the Collective "I"
16:00-17:00 David Schweikard (Münster): Incorporation and Autonomy
17:00-18:00 Laurence Kaufmann (Lausanne): Collective Attentionality: A Parsimonious Way of Doing Being Collective?
Thursday, 13 September 2012
Session 3 Chair: Anita Konzelmannn Ziv
9:30-10:30 Luc Bovens (London): Factions in Rousseau's Du contrat social
11:00-12:00 Fabienne Peter (Warwick): The Epistemic Circumstances of Democracy
12:00-13:00 Robin Celikates (Amsterdam): Rousseau, Philosophical Anarchist? The Social Contract and the Problem of Political Obligation
Rousseau's conception of the social contract has attracted renewed attention in the context of recent attempts to understand what it means for people to think and act jointly, as a body. The difficulties facing any attempt to analyze group attitudes as aggregations of individual attitudes makes Rousseau's central idea of a "remarkable change in man" through which people come to adopt a we-perspective particularly attractive. This international workshop celebrates Rousseau's tricentennial by exploring and evaluating this Rousseauean perspective in the theory of judgment aggregation, collective intentionality, and group agency in an interdisciplinary context. Rousseau's ideas thus enter into a dialogue with contemporary social philosophy and social theory.
Rousseau's conception of the social contract and the formation of a general will is most famous for providing a vivid example for the (few) strengths and (many) dangers of a positive conception of liberty. Recent developments in social and political philosophy, however, suggest a new perspective. Rousseau's basic idea is that it is not possible simply to aggregate individual preferences or judgments to a group preference or judgment; rather, some form of "association" is needed which precedes any aggregation procedure. Association involves a "remarkable change in man" through which people come to adopt a we-perspective, which leads to the general will. This basic idea is congenial to recent attempts to understand what it means for a group of people to reason and act together, as a body, and to constitute a group agent. Most obviously and most influentially, Plural Subject Theory, as developed by Margaret Gilbert, is deeply Rousseauean in its basic features. Gilbert conceives of group attitudes as commitments of a Plural or Group Subject, rather than of the participating individuals, and she describes the Plural Subject as emerging from a "pooling of wills" which binds the participants together "as a body". Gilberts Plural Subject Theory is one of the most influential accounts in current political and social philosophy, and the conceptual tools which it provides have been applied to such diverse areas as Political Science, Economics, and Developmental Psychology. Gilbert often mentions Rousseau in her writings, and commends him for his conception; the title of the first draft of her influential paper "Walking together" was "Footnotes on Rousseau". With Rousseau's 300th anniversary, the time has come to put Rousseau on the map of the current discussion on the basic structure of group attitudes. Just as the current debate sheds new light on Rousseau, Rousseau might still have to teach us some important lessons on collective agency. In particular, the workshop “Walking with Rousseau” hopes to shed some light on the questions: What is the basic structure of Association, and how does Aggregation come into the picture? How does this conception relate to the widely shared intuition that intentional control works at the individual level, rather than at some point over and above the heads of the individuals? How much self-alienation is involved in this conception of participation in a general will? Rousseau scholars and experts on group agency and collective intentionality as well as scholars from neighboring fields will join their competences in the attempt to reassess Rousseau’s seminal idea.
For further information please contact Marcel Weber.
Dernière mise à jour: 08 Jun 2011 17:06:58.
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