Wilson College Humanities Conference: Humanity 2.0?

full name / name of organization: 
Michael G. Cornelius, Ph.D. / Program Director M.A. in Humanities
contact email: 

Wilson College Humanities Conference

Humanity 2.0?

Saturday, February 15, 2014
Held in the Patterson Lounge and Meeting Room
Laird Hall at Wilson College
Chambersburg, PA

sponsored by Wilson's M.A. in Humanities Program

The recent work of scientists, artists, and entrepreneurs is raising profound questions about how we think about human identity. In the eyes of some, the human species increasingly appears akin to other animals, bound as it were by the limits of our physical bodies. Others contend that technology is making it possible to enhance or even control the evolution of our species, raising the question of whether we might soon be able to engineer a new version of humanity—the posthuman—if, indeed, we have not already done so.

The goal of this one-day conference is to raise questions, propound explanations, and interrogate our beliefs and values about ourselves and our future(s). Drawing from a wide variety of humanities perspectives—including the studies of literature, art, theater, popular culture, global studies, philosophy, religious studies, anthropology, history, political science, as well as creative expressions in writing, art, and performance—it is the hope of the conference organizers that all participants will be able to interrogate not only the nature of human existence but ponder where that existence may be headed and the myriad ways we may be headed there. Proposals could include explorations of particular works, authors, ideas, or artists that are pondering this continuing "evolution" of the (post)human, whether it be the development of an individual identity, the species as a unit, or, perhaps, movement in another direction, not progress but regress or, perhaps, another alternative altogether. Works of creative expression appropriate to the format are also welcome.

It is hoped that this conference will bring together humanities faculty, graduate students, and senior-level students from regional colleges and universities in a day-long exploration of these questions. To submit a presentation, please send an abstract of no more than 200 words to the email address below.

Send abstracts to:
Dr. Michael G. Cornelius
Program Director, MA in Humanities

Submit the abstract as either a .doc or .docx file or simply place it into the text of the email itself.

You may submit a presentation of either critical or creative work. Individual presentations should be no more than 15 minutes; panels of up to 3 individuals may be submitted as well. Each conference participant may submit only one abstract. Abstracts are due by JANUARY 10.

Faculty, graduate students, and current college seniors are all invited to submit.

The conference is sponsored by Wilson's M.A. in Humanities program, in conjunction with the Orr Forum 2013-14 Lecture and Performance Series.