Eco-Emergenc(i)es and the Limits of Darwinian Thought (due 1 Nov 2014; U of Ottawa 30 May - 2 Jun 2015)

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Evolutionary thinker Daniel Dennett compares Darwin's "dangerous idea" to a "universal acid: it eats through just about every traditional concept, and leaves in its wake a revolutionized world-view, with most of the old landmarks still recognizable" (63). And, yet, this alchemical ideological dissolution and transformation seems itself bound to its own evolutionary process; after more than a century and a half, Darwin's idea seems to have left some ideological apparatuses almost unscathed, while others, still, are only very recently feeling the burn of evolutionary thought: compare, for instance, the 'old landmark' of organized religion with the recent advent of eco-politics, eco-poetics, eco-criticism, even eco-psychology, and any number of other eco-hyphenates emerging in the humanities. New philosophical and environmental discourses, such as Cary Wolf's posthumanism and Bill Mollison's permaculture, currently extend the whole-systems thinking of computational, and then ecological sciences to arrive at novel ethical paradigms serving to correct Renaissance and Enlightenment models for evolution; David Abram, too, combines ecology and phenomenology in an attempt to revitalize the immediate intercourse between sensuous bodies and their perceptual environments.

This interdisciplinary panel considers some of the antacid properties, inherent to more resistant fields of discourse, that make them palatable, still, to a post-Darwinian society. Similarly, this panel takes interest in novel hybridisms of evolutionary biology with disciplines traditionally considered outside the scope of the natural sciences, to arrive at a litmus test for the universality of Darwinism in contemporary thought. So, too, might papers treat the topic of the interdisciplinarity essential to the ecologies; question the integrity of (post-)Darwinism as a metanarrative displacing more traditional modes of thought; or speculate on what, if anything, remains after the acid has neutralized, or resides beyond the purview of its reaction.

Please send a file containing a 300-500 word proposal, without personal identifying marks; a file containing a 100 word abstract and a 50 word biographical statement; and the 2015 Proposal Submissions Information Sheet available on the ACCUTE website (, to by 1 November 2014.