Religion and Realism, The American University of Rome – Nov 28, 2014

 In Call for Papers, Uncategorized

The American University of Rome are pleased to announce a CALL FOR
PAPERS for an International Conference on RELIGION AND REALISM

Date of the conference: November 28, 2014

Deadline for paper proposals: September 1, 2014

Rome, The American University of Rome.

Religion remains one of the most significant social forces and cultural
constituencies. It can be said that religion and religious truths are
becoming increasingly important in the so called “post-secular” times,
when the sphere of the (secular) social/political and the sphere of the
religious have to be re-thought again. The relevancy of religious truths
and the way they structure our understanding of “reality” overcomes the
sphere of theology and particular religious practices. Religion, truth,
and reality, and the way these concepts are approached and understood,
continue to be vital for a broader cultural discourse as well, from
philosophy and science, to politics, mass media and show business.

“Realism,” on the other hand, is usually understood as a position and
method, which is opposite to “idealism” and the “imaginary.” “Realism”
implies a certain way of approaching the reality and truth. Looking from
a positivistic perspective, many would find it difficult to associate
concepts of “realism” or “truth” with phenomena such as religion.
However, the experience of the post-modern times has taught us that
relations between the “reality,” “truth,” “knowledge” and
“interpretation” are far more complex, and that even the purest
“fiction” is sometimes capable of being more effective (and therefore
more “real”) in influencing our lives and in structuring the world in
which we live, than most of the things that are directly exposed to our
sensuous experience and rational reflection. On the other hand, we have
also learned from the experience of modernity that certain metaphysical
narratives, and their claims for “absolute truth” and “absolute reality,”
could be very dangerous in their practical, social and political

The conference seeks to explore philosophical, social, political, and
theological dimensions of religion and realism. The themes and subjects
for paper proposals include (but are not limited to) the following:

Secularism, post-secularism, new religiosity
Religion and reality
Religion and truth
Religion and subversion
Religion and political reality
Religion and economic “realisms”
Absolute “truths” and social/political freedom
Ultimate truth: tyranny or liberation?
Realism as epistemology
Realism – the political dimension
Realism – the aesthetic dimension
Realism – the religious/theological
Realism and the “New Realism”
Understanding metaphysical, physical and social “reality”
Reality and creativity
Reality and religion: the need for interpretation or for a social
Power, reality and knowledge

Submitting proposals: English will be the working language of the
conference. Paper proposals (abstracts) should contain no more than 250

There will be no conference fee for speakers. All presented papers will
be published in the conference proceedings.

Abstracts, together with a short CV (not to exceed 1800 characters)
should be sent no later than September 1, 2014 to:

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