CFA: “The Politics of German Idealism” (Coimbra, 6-8 September 2023)

We are glad to give notice that the Call for abstracts for the international conference “The Politics of German Idealism”, which will take place at the Universidade de Coimbra (Institute for Philosophical Studies, IEF) on September 6th-8th 2023, is now opened.

The conference is organized by Bernardo Ferro (IEF, Universidade de Coimbra) and Marta Amaral (IEF, Universidade de Coimbra).

Confirmed keynote speakers are David James (University of Warwick), Esther Neuhann (Universität Hamburg), Günter Zöller (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München), Mário Jorge de Carvalho (Universidade Nova de Lisboa), Velimir Stojkovski (University of Michigan-Dearborn).

Please find below the text of the call.


In most Philosophy textbooks, German Idealism is equated with the theoretical revolution initiated by Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason and developed in different ways by Fichte, Schelling and Hegel. As its very name suggests, this movement is traditionally defined by its contribution to the modern epistemological debate about the nature and the limits of human cognition. The upcoming conference The Politics of German Idealism, to be held in person at the University of Coimbra, will depart from this standard approach and focus on a less explored but no less important side of this well-known philosophical movement: its contribution to the history of legal, social and political philosophy. By revisiting the practical thought of its proponents, the debates they engaged in and the main criticisms elicited by their writings, we aim to highlight the depth and the originality of their political views and to identify their main similarities and differences. In doing so, we will seek to determine whether there is, in fact, a political philosophy of German Idealism, as opposed to a mere collection of historically related doctrines.

The conference will have a wide thematic scope. We welcome presentations both on Idealism’s leading names (Kant, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel) and on its lesser-known representatives (Reinhold, Jacobi, Maimon), as well on other figures of classical German philosophy who are directly connected with the movement (Schiller, Herder, Hölderlin, Humboldt, Dalberg, Wieland, Forster, Reimarus, Pistorius, Erhard, Rehberg, Schlegel, Novalis or Schopenhauer, among others). Moreover, potential speakers are free to focus on a wide array of issues, including: the relationship between right, morality and politics; the origin, legitimacy and scope of political authority; the national and international dimensions of right and political power; the concept of human rights; the right to revolution; theories of political participation and representation; the virtues and limitations of political and economic liberalism; the nature and scope of property rights; etc.

Submission guidelines. 

We welcome the participation of PhD students, early career researchers and established scholars.
To participate, please submit an anonymized abstract of 300 to 500 words, in English, by 1 June 2023.
The abstract should be sent to, attached to an-email with the subject “PGI Abstract”, along with your name and affiliation and a brief biographical note.

Successful applicants will be notified by 31 July 2021 and will be offered up to 30 minutes to present their paper, followed by 10 minutes of discussion. The presentations will be in English.

Shortly after the conference, selected speakers will be invited to submit the final version of their papers for publication in an edited volume by an international press.

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