CFA: The Second Kantian Foundations of Democracy Conference: “Progressivism and Conservatism in Kantian Political Philosophy” (Oslo, 31 August – 1 September 2023))

We are glad to give notice of the Call for Abstracts for The Second Kantian Foundations of Democracy (KanDem) Conference, on Progressivism and Conservatism in Kantian Political Philosophy, which will be held at the IFIKK University of Oslo, on August 31st – September 1st, 2023.

The Conference is organized by Michael Kryluk, Reidar Maliks, Elisabeth Widmer.

Keynote Speakers will be Howard Williams (Cardiff University) and Frederick Beiser (Syracuse University).


Theme of the Conference:

Kant has often been called a “moderate” political thinker. On the one hand, he builds his political philosophy on the innate right of humanity that pertains to all human beings. This provides an egalitarian foundation on which he condemns the permissibility of slavery, colonialism, and hereditary privileges. On the other hand, Kant seems to envision a patriarchal, classist society in which women and laborers are not considered full citizens and therefore have no say in legislation. These two aspects of Kant’s political thought are also reflected in his immediate followers, who were both progressives and conservatives. While some used the Kantian framework for reactionary theories (see, e. g., August Wilhelm Rehberg, Freidrich von Gentz..), others thought that Kant’s views were not egalitarian enough, thereby aiming to correct his political theory by placing it on more egalitarian Kantian grounds (e. g., Johann, Adam Bergk, Johann Benjamin Erhard,…).

The Second KanDem-Conference seeks to explore the theme of progressivism and conservatism in Kant’s political philosophy and his immediate followers. The conference focuses on themes including, but not limited to:

· Kant and his immediate successors on revolution

· Kant and his immediate successors on active citizenship

· Kant and his immediate successors on women’s and worker’s rights

· Kant and his immediate successors on colonialism

· Kant and his immediate successors on hereditary privileges

· Kant and his immediate successors on political autonomy

· Kant and his immediate successors on political progress

· Kant and his immediate successors on economic and property rights

· Kant and his immediate successors on political legitimacy (of states, governments, etc.)

Although we welcome contributions that focus exclusively on Kant, we are particularly interested in presentations that approach Kant’s or Kantian political philosophy through the lens of lesser-known Kantian figures, such as Johann Heinrich Abicht, Jakob Sigismund Beck, Johann Adam Bergk, Friedrich Bouterwek, Johann Gottlieb Buhle, Johann Benjamin Erhard, Paul Johann Anselm von Feuerbach, Johann Gotlieb Fichte, Georg Forster, Friedrich Gentz, Georg Friedrich Goess, Karl Heinrich Heydenreich, Johann Christoph Hoffbauer, Ludwig Julius Friedrich Höpfner, Gotlieb Hufeland, Gustav Hugo, Wilhelm von Humboldt, Ludwig Heinrich von Jakob, Christoph Gottlob Jähne, G. F. Kellner, Karl Salomo Zachariä von Lingenthal, Rtn. Gthlf Löbel, Friedrich von Manger, Johann Gebhard Ehrenreich Maass, Salomon Maimon, Georg Samuel Albert Mellin, Johann Heinrich Meyer, Christian Friedrich Michaelis, Johann Georg Nehr, Christoph Friedrich Nicolai, Johann Wilhelm Petersen /Jo Wilhelm Placidus, Heinrich Ludwig Pölitz, Karl Ludwig Pörschke, Elise Reimarus, Karl Leonhard Reinhold, J. C. C. Rüdiger, Johann Christian Gottlieb Schaumann, Augustin Schelle, Friedrich Schelling, Friedrich Schlegel, Theodor Schmalz, Carl Christian Erhard Schmid, Konrad Stang, Heinrich Stephani, Wilhelm Gottlieb Tafinger, Johann Heinrich Tieftrunk, K. J. Wedekind, Ferdinand Christoph Weise, and I. D.Westphal.

Call for Abstracts:

We invite submissions of abstracts of around 300-400 words, excluding references and footnotes. Abstracts must be prepared for blind review, but include personal information (affiliation, contact info) in the submission email. Please send your email to Elisabeth Widmer (

Deadline: February 28th, 2023.

Notification: March 31st, 2023.

For further information and updating, please visit the website of the event.

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