Vote on New Fee Structure

21 09 2009

Vote on the following issue: New fee structure

The executive board would like to reduce our membership fees significantly.  We currently charge between $30 and $45 USD.  Our fees are necessary to support our events, administration costs, and publication schemes, but we are in the process of exploring alternative avenues for publication and society administration at this time.  For a more inclusive society, we move that regular membership be reduced to $5 USD per year.  We will offer a graduated fee structure for those who interested in becoming supporting members at $20 USD/ year, and, as a non-profit organization, we can accept donations as well.

We are asking members to vote YES or NO to “new fee structure” by email, since not everyone will be at SPEP for our annual business meeting. Please vote by 29 October, 2009 from the institutional address we have on file for you:


CFP: Politics of Hope/Politics of Fear

21 09 2009


The Eastern APA (American Philosophical Association) in 2010

The SSPP invites papers for two conference panels. We are seeking papers that address issues pertaining to:

Politics of Hope / Politics of Fear

Hobbes famously wrote, “The passion to be reckoned upon is fear.” The connection thus established between the state and fear has been the basis not only of various political regimes, but of political theory by philosophers such as Spinoza, Hegel, Arendt and Massumi. In an age of color-coded warning systems, terrorism, and pandemic disease, the essential link between fear and politics seems beyond dispute, and demands investigation: How does fear work? Does it always reinforce authority, as Hobbes imagined? Can there be a revolt of fear? What is the connection between the fear that the masses fear and the fear they evoke in the corridors of power? More importantly, what remains of fear’s opposite, hope, in this Hobbesian world? How can hope function in a world overrun by fear? Does hope require a vision of a better world? Is there anything beyond the relation of hope and fear, a politics beyond the vacillation of these affects? For this panel we invite papers that examine either the “politics of fear” or the “politics of hope” in terms of both broad theoretical discussions (including examinations of the politics of the affects and imagination) and specific investigations into regimes of fear and hope.

Complete papers of 3000-5000 words (that can be summarized and presented in 20-30 minutes) should be submitted for consideration for the 2010 meeting (deadline: March 1, 2010). The APA Conference scheduled for December 27-30, 2010, in Boston, MA.

Authors should include their name(s) and contact information on the cover page ONLY.

Papers should be emailed as attachments in Word or RTF format to:

CFP: Politics and Ontology

21 09 2009


SPEP (Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy) in 2010

The SSPP invites papers for two conference panels. We are seeking papers that address issues pertaining to:

Politics and Ontology

We seek to explore and challenge the hypothesis that all political theory presupposes an ontology. From the presumption of universal rationality, to the potency of class consciousness, to the privileges shaped by the social existence of race, gender and sexuality, political order always is or implies an ontological order. In many respects, the ontological question is the political question. Struggles for political change are as much about the expansion (or contraction) of shared ontological categories as they are about the rewriting of legislation or the redistribution of power and resources . The traditional allocation of rights, for instance, has been determined almost entirely on the basis of who, or what, one is presumed to be. While ontology and politics share a long, interconnected history, for much of modern history the connection between them has been downplayed or denied, since liberalism is premised on bracketing such supposedly insoluble and inherently conflictual metaphysical questions. In recent decades, however, this has changed. The explicit investigation of political ontology has taken center stage and, as a consequence, what we understand to be political or ontological has changed as well. Politics is no longer limited to the state, but permeates all of social existence to include the terrain of imagination, emotions, and representation. Ontology is no longer an ultimate foundation, but is constituted through relations of power and affects. In the works of such authors as Gilles Deleuze, Elizabeth Grosz, Giorgio Agamben, William Connolly, Alain Badiou, Jacques Rancière, Jean-Luc Nancy, Antonio Negri, and many others, the subject of political ontology has surfaced in an array of new formulations. For this panel, we invite papers that extend this investigation or that challenge this resurgence, both within the context of work that has already been done and in anticipation of work yet to be conceived.

Complete papers of 3000-5000 words (that can be summarized and presented in 20-30 minutes) should be submitted for consideration for the 2010 meeting (deadline: March 1, 2010). The SPEP Conference is scheduled for October 2010, in Montreal, Canada.

 Authors should include their name(s) and contact information on the cover page ONLY.

 Papers should be emailed as attachments in Word or RTF format to:

Upcoming SSPP Events

21 09 2009

1.  2009 Meeting at SPEP: Thursday, 29 October, 2009

General information about the SPEP annual meeting can be found at

PANEL: Anarchism & Philosophy

Time: 9 am – Noon

Location: Lincoln Room

Moderator: Cory Wimberly, University of Texas – Pan American

  • “This Time I’m Serious: Critchley, Anarchism, and the Question of Violence,” Peter Gratton, University of San Diego
  • “Demanding Impossible Justice: Thoughts on Post-Foundationalist Anarchism,” Michael Larsen, Point Park University
  • “Anarchist Philosophy and Working Class Struggle: A Brief History and Commentary,” Nathan Jun, Midwestern State University
  • “Anarchist Meditations,” Alejandro de Acosta, Southwestern University


2.  Meeting at APA Eastern: Wednesday, 30 December, 2000

General information about the APA Eastern Division meeting can be found at:

PANEL: Environmental Philosophy as Political Philosophy

Time: 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Location: TBA

Moderator: Trent Hamann, St. John’s University

  • “Creative Evolution, Today: Bergson and Contemporary Biology,” Michael Vaughan, University of Warwick-United Kingdom
  • “Between Walzer and Levinas: Political Viability as a Regulative Constraint for Environmental Philosophy,” J. Aaron Simmons, Hendrix College
  • “Reviving a Global Ecological Feminism: An Ecopolitics of Homeplace,” Jennifer Scuro, College of New Rochelle
  • “Environmental Political Philosophy: On the Future of the Nation State,” Julie Kuhlken (Misericordia University)

CFP: Political Realism in Comparative Perspective

12 09 2009

MARCH 31 ­ APRIL 4, 2010

The International Society for the Comparative Study of Chinese and Western Philosophy (ISCWP) is seeking presentations on Hobbes, Machiavelli, or any major Western political thinker committed to developing political principles within constraints set by realistic accounts of human behavior and motivation. Topics might include (but are not limited to) Hobbesian views of human nature, moral or psychological egoism, or realist accounts of state legitimacy.

The chosen presenters will share a panel with experts in Chinese political philosophy, whose papers will focus on an influential school of political realists in China. All presenters must be open to giving comments and criticisms to the other panelists during the discussion period. However, no familiarity with Chinese philosophy is required or even expected.

Submission Deadline: September 30, 2009.

1. To submit a paper proposal, please provide a 250-300 word abstract. Submissions need to include presenter’s name, institutional affiliation, paper title, and email address.

2. Announcement of papers and/or panels selected for presentation will be made in mid-October.

3. Address all submissions and inquires to: Professor Steve Angle, email:

CFP: Hegel After Spinoza

20 08 2009


Hegel After Spinoza: A Volume of Critical Essays  

Edited by Hasana Sharp and Jason Smith

Call for Papers


The names Hegel and Spinoza have come to represent two irreconcilable paths in contemporary philosophy.  This opposition has taken different forms, but has its roots in mid- to late-20th century French philosophy.  Althusser announced that he required a “detour” away from Hegel and through Spinoza in order to arrive at a genuinely materialist Marxism.  Pierre Macherey staged a careful deconstruction of Hegel’s claim to have superseded Spinoza’s system in Hegel ou Spinoza, which concomitantly served as a defence of Spinozism against the Hegelianism dominant in France in the 1960s and ‘70s.  Among the most influential articulations of this antagonism are the polemics of Deleuze celebrating the immanent and vitalist thinking of a materialist tradition beginning with Lucretius and passing through Spinoza to the present, to which he opposes the logic of totality, negativity, and contradiction found in Hegel.  Spinoza, for Deleuze and others, stands for a rejection of negativity and lack as the foundation of philosophical and political thought, and as a salutary alternative to the negativity (in both the logical and existential senses) associated not only with Hegel, but with Hobbes, Freud, Sartre, Heidegger, and Lévinas as well.  Feminists have likewise celebrated Spinoza as providing a joyful alternative to a tradition that emphasizes anxiety, mortality, and combat.  This opposition, in its various expressions, underscores that reading Hegel has always been and remains a political act. 


We are seeking essays to contribute to an anthology on the relationship between Spinoza and Hegel that move beyond the stalemate of current debates in continental philosophy.  The title we have proposed for this collection points toward a horizon that no longer opposes a “bad” Hegel to a “good” Spinoza; we seek essays that indicate how contemporary readings of Spinoza—no longer the thinker of absolute substance, but of immanent causality, singular connections, transindividuality, and the multitude—might illuminate otherwise less visible threads in Hegel’s thought, and open the way to a re-reading of Hegel, beyond the institutionalized figure we take for granted.  How might a productive and mutually enlightening encounter be produced between these two great systematic thinkers?  What political possibilities are opened up by reading Hegel and Spinoza as useful contrasts rather than moral alternatives?  The anthology will be published in a series that treats historical topics in light of contemporary continental thought.  We are open to a broad range of topics within this rubric, but are especially interested in new readings that avoid simply recapitulating either the pantheism controversy in 19th century Germany or the French polemics of the 20th century.


Please send papers of 7,500-10,000 words to:

 Hasana Sharp ( or Jason Smith ( by 15 June, 2010

The purpose, functions, and uses of this blog

20 08 2009

The primary purpose of our new blog is to augment the haphazard and idiosyncratic modes of communication that currently link the SSPP e-board and membership – basically, our panels, newsletter, and e-mail – by creating a platform for ongoing and many-sided conversation about almost anything pertinent to the Society.

To fulfill this purpose, the blog will function in three essential ways:

  1. it will allow the e-board to publicize Society events (panels, roundtables, elections, etc.);
  2. it will allow the membership to contribute to the Society by proposing CFP topics, weighing in on certain e-board decisions, and voting in elections;
  3. it will allow the membership to communicate with one another about the publication of books and articles, related and member blogs, CFPs and conferences, meeting coordination, etc.

In order to take advantage of this new platform, members may either

a) comment on any post, or

b) e-mail the administrator ( a matter for a new post.