Conference: Self-understanding and Self-alienation
It is a central insight in philosophical hermeneutics that understanding belongs to human existence. If this is so, how should we then ‘understand understanding’? What does understanding mean in understanding others and in understanding a more or less shared world? How does self-understanding play into understanding? How is the ‘self’ implied in self-understanding?
Self-understanding is an ongoing meaning-making process where we situate ourselves and are situated in the world. It is inherent to self-understanding that we can also misunderstand or fail to come to an understanding, which can lead to experiences of self-alienation, confusion and frustration. How is this tension a part of the human condition? What is the relationship between existential experiences of self-alienation and situations where such experiences become overwhelming, as we see it in psychopathology or after severe traumatization? Are the experiences of the same kind only different in intensity, or are they fundamentally distinct? Moreover, how is the self-world relationship implicated in different kinds of self-alienation?
If we take the two insights together that understanding belongs to human existence, and that self-alienation is in question in ways of human relatedness, what is the relation of self-understanding and self-alienation?
Time and place:
September 24th – 25th, 2015
Venue: Faculty of Theology, University of Copenhagen, Købmagergade 46, Aud. 7
Organized by the VELUX project: “Existential Hermeneutics and Psychopathology: Self-understanding and Self-alienation.
Thursday, September 24
10:00-10:15: Words of Welcome
10:15-11:00 Emil Angehrn (Basel): “Self-Understanding and Self-Deception”
11:30-12:00 Cathrine Bjørnholt Michaelsen: “The solitude of not being able to be alone – or, living through others”
12:15-13:30 Lunch Break
13:30-14:15 Günter Figal (Freiburg): “The Decentered-ness of Understanding Oneself”
14:45-15:00 Coffee / Tea Break
15:00-15:45 Ingolf U. Dalferth (Claremont): “Self, Finitude and Estrangement”
16:15-16:45 Morten Sørensen Thaning: “Responsibility and the Breakdown in Self-understanding”
Friday, September 25
09:15-10:00 Shaun Gallager (Memphis): “Somatic alienation: Body disownership in the context of torture”
10:30-10:45 Coffee / Tea Break
10:45-11:30 Lisa Guenther (Vanderbilt): “Isolation, Self-alienation, and Resistance in a California Prison”
12:00-13:00 Lunch Break
13:00-13:45 Thomas Fuchs (Heidelberg): “Transparency, opacity and alienation: The self as medium of perception and cognition”
14:15-14:45 Arne Grøn (Copenhagen): “Self-understanding and self-alienation”
15:00-16:00 Open discussion