Inicio > Convocatorias > “Karel Kosík and Dialectics of the Concrete”: Prague, 4– 6 June 2014

“Karel Kosík and Dialectics of the Concrete”: Prague, 4– 6 June 2014

A conference organised by the Department for the Study of Modern Czech Philosophy, Institute of Philosophy, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (FCB).

In 1963 Karel Kosík published his path-breaking book Dialectics of the Concrete. It made an impact on both Marxist and non-Marxist thinkers, in Czechoslovakia and throughout the world. In this work Kosík set for himself an ambitious task – to re-think the basic concepts of the Marxist philosophical tradition and to employ them in the analysis of social reality. In the course of his analysis he touched on a wide array of issues that are still relevant today, including the problem of mystification or the “pseudo-concrete,” the social role of art, the conception of reality as a concrete totality, the conception of the human being as an ontoformative being, the systematic connection between labour and temporality, the relationship between praxis and labour, and the explanatory power of the dialectical method.

Organisers: Ivan Landa, Jan Mervart, Joseph Grim Feinberg

International Organising Committee: Johann P. Arnason, Peter Hudis, Joseph G. Feinberg, Ivan Landa, Michael Löwy, Jan Mervart, Francesco Tava


PDF version

Conference Poster

Keynote lectures: 40 mins. + 20 mins. discussion (held in the large conference room on the ground floor, “G”)

Panel presentations: 30 mins. + 10 mins. discussion per presentation (parallel sections held in the large conference room on the ground floor, “G,” and in the small conference room upstairs, “U”)

Weds. June 4, 2014

8:30 am  Registration
9:00 am Introductory remarks:
Ondřej Ševeček (director of the Philosophy Institute)Josef Zumr (former director of the Institute of Philosophy)
Ivan Landa (chair of the Philosophy Institute’s Department for the Study of Modern Czech Philosophy)
9:30 am Keynote speaker:Johann Pal Arnason, “Kosík’s Marxism: Sources, Significance and Limitations”
10:30 am  Coffee Break
10:45 am Panel 1A. Kosík in Context I: The Reform Years (G) Panel 1B: Kosík and Marx (U)
Tereza Kunešová, “The Reception and Critique of Kosík´s Dialectics of the Concrete in Czechoslovakia between 1963 and 1969” Mehmet Tabak, “Dialectic of Unfolding in Hegel, Marx, and Kosík”
Jan Mervart, “Karel Kosík as a Public Intellectual of the Reform Years” Feng-Yu Zang, “On “Dialectics of the Concrete” in Examining the Academic relationship between Marx and Engels. Analysis Kosik’s Concept of Dialectics and its Contemporary Significance”
Vasil Gluchman, “Kusý and Marxist Humanism in the 1960s”
12:45pm Lunch
2:30 pm Keynote speaker: Michael Löwy, “Spirit of Resistance. Brief notes for an intellectual biography of Karel Kosik”Coffe break
4:00 pm Panel 2A. Cognition and ideology (U) Panel 2B. Kosík and Heideggerian Marxism (G)
Siyaves Azeri, “Dialectics of the Concrete, Abstract Labour, and Criticism of Existentialism” Ian Angus, “Inception of Culture according to Karel Kosík: Appreciation and Critique”
Petr Kužel, “The World of the Pseudoconcrete, Ideology and Theory of the Subject” Jan Černý, “Karel Kosík and Heidegger: From Marxism to Traditionalism”
6:00 pm End for the day
8:00 pm Informal gathering at a nearby pub (Restaurant “Na Slamníku” Wolkerova 566/12, 160 00 Praha 6-Bubeneč)

Thurs. June 5, 2014

 8:30am  Keynote speaker: Anselm Min,“Surviving Postmodernism and Globalization: Kosík’s Dialectics of the Concrete Thirty Years Later”
9:30 am Panel 4A. Kosík in Italy (G) Panel 4B. Dialectics and Epistemology (U)
Laura Boella, “Karel Kosík: Intertwining Philosophy and Life” Tomáš Hříbek, “Marxist Revisionism and Its Critique of ‘Positivism’”
Francesco Tava, “A Red Thread between Milan and Prague: Guido Neri’s Interpretation of Kosík’s Dialectics of the Concrete”
10:50 am Coffee Break
11:00 am Panel 5A. Kosík in the Americas (G) Panel 5B. Dialectics and Ontology I (U)
Diana Fuentes, “Karel Kosik in Mexico: Adolfo Sánchez Vázquez and the Dialectics of the Concrete” Baowen Li, “Dialectics of the concrete: the construction and critique dimension of the conception of reality”
Peter Hudis, “Karel Kosik and American Marxist Humanism”Newton Duarte, “Dialectics of the Concrete and Historical-Critical Pedagogy in Brazil” Attila Güney, “Kosík and Gramsci: An Assessment on Marxist Notions of Totality and Praxis”
1:00 pm Lunch
2:30 pm Keynote speaker: Bertell Ollman, “The Relation of Kosik’s Dialectical Philosophy to Marx’s Dialectical Method: Where to Begin and Why Does that Matter?”
3:30 pm Panel 6A. Kosík and Western Marxism (G) Panel 6B. Dialectics and Ontology II (U)
Tom Rockmore, “Kosik, Lukács and the Thing in Itself” Junya Yuan, “Kosik on Dialectics”
Russell Rockwell, “The Freedom and Necessity Dialectic: Marcuse, Kosík, and Today” Xinruo Zhang and Xiaohan Huang, Ontological Dialectic and A Critique of Modernity: Based on the Interpretation of Kosik’s ‘Concrete Totality’
4:50 pm Coffee break
5:00 pm Panel 7A. Kosík in Context: East-Central Europe from Reform to Revolution (G) Panel 7B. Structure and Concrete Totality (U)
Aviezer Tucker, “From Kosik to Havel: Debating the meaning of 1968” Vít Bartoš, “Kosík’s Concept of ‘Concrete Totality’ and Its Criticism”
Stephan-Immanuel Teichgräber, “How Kosík´s Thinking Changed the Meaning of 1989” Denko Skalovski, “Kosík’s Dialectics of Concrete Totality”
Huang Jifeng, “‘Concrete Totality’ and ‘Structuralist Totality.’ The comparison of Kosik and Althusser’s explanation on the Marx’s Theory of History”
7:00 pm End for the day

Fri. June 6, 2014

9:30 am Panel 8A. The Concept of History (U) Panel 8B. Praxis I (G)
Miloš Havelka, “Kosík’s Conception of the 19th Century” Ivan Landa, “Labour and the Struggle for Recognition: Kosík´s Concept of Praxis”
Tomáš Hermann, “Karel Kosík and His ‘Radical Democrats’ Moving From a Historical to a Systematic Approach to Philosophy” Anita Lunić, “Gramsci’s and Kosik’s Notions of the Philosophy of Praxis Revisited”
10:50 am Coffee Break
11:00 am Panel 9A. On the Political (U) Panel 9B. Praxis II (G)
Joe Grim Feinberg, “The Dialectics of the People” Alessandra Farina, “Praxis and Labour in Kosík’s Dialectics of the Concrete and the Constitutively Needing Nature of the Subject in The Functioning of the Sciences and the Meaning of Man by Enzo Paci”
Dirk Dalberg, ”Europe’s lost centre. Karel Kosik’s conception of Central Europe” Michael Hauser, “Karel Kosík and post-Marxism”
 Ľubomír Dunaj, “Kosík´s Concept of Concreteness, the Everyday, and the Intercultural Dialogue”
1:00 pm End of the conference

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