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“Humanity and the challenges of the contemporary world: Man and catastrophes”
full name / name of organization:
University Charles de Gaulle, Lille 3, France
April 16-17, 2014
Over the last few decades our increasingly complex and globalized world has witnessed a constant increase of disasters, cataclysms and natural or provoked catastrophes. Even if it is sometimes possible to anticipate them thanks to technological progress, they often greatly increase the mortality rate, devastate the natural environment, adversely affect ecosystems.
What has man been doing and what can he do, when confronted with catastrophes for which he is responsible and with which he has to deal ?
The aim of our conference is to focus on the relationship between catastrophes and humanity, on the different ways in which catastrophes impact upon humanity . .
Our focus will be on man’s actions and reactions when facing catastrophes. The questions of responsability and conscience are particularly relevant in an interconnected world which is characterized by an unprecedented acceleration in time and space.
The participants at the conference will have the opportunity to choose to have their paper included in one of the three main parts as well as in one or several subdivisions as indicated below.
Possible subdivisions (a few proposals are given as examples)
- Predicted catastrophes (the idea of Apocalypse, demographic catastrophes, etc.)
If it is possible to agree sometimes with Dostoevsky’s provocative and premonitory idea for the XXth century that « man…passionately loves destruction and chaos », we prefer to adhere to his vision of the human being as an « essentially constructive animal ». Let us replace the term « animal » by that of « man » and let us ask the question : shall we be able to respond to the challenges which have been evoked in the conference and to transform the destructions, catastrophes or various upheavals into the premise of a new civilisation which it wil be up to us to build for the humanity to come ?
Please submit your proposals (the title, a short abstract -300 to 500 words maximum, and short CV by July 15th , 2013 to the following address:
Please try to relate your proposal as closely as possible to one of the conference themes, as outline above.