“Literature and the Problem of Evil” The Polish Journal of Aesthetics No. 56 (1/2020)
CALL FOR PAPERS
“Literature and the Problem of Evil”
The Polish Journal of Aesthetics No. 56 (1/2020)
Fiona Ellis (University of Roehampton, London)
Marek Drwięga (Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland)
Adriana Warmbier (Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland)
Submission deadline: August 31, 2019
The problem of evil in its classical form refers to the question whether one may reconcile the existence of evil with the existence of God who is a perfectly benevolent omnipotent being. In The City of God, St. Augustine confronts a central problem: How did evil come into the world if human beings were created good? A wide range of responses to this question has been given not only in philosophy and theology but also in literature and film. 'Literature is not innocent' stated Georges Bataille persuading that only by acknowledging its complicity with the knowledge of evil can literature communicate fully and intensely. Literature affords various accounts of manifestation of evil (its nature, origins and consequences in human life). Numerous writers have delved deeply into the psychological and metaphysical dimensions of evil, among them there is a Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky. Not only has he provided a detailed insight as to how is psychology tied to the metaphysical aspect of human existence, but also he addressed the question of whether crime and transgression can be a privileged avenue of access into the human interior. The earliest accounts of evil in texts including the Bible and Greek myth and in philosophy (Plato, Plotinus, St. Augustine, G.W. Leibniz, I. Kant, F. Nietzsche, H. Arendt) have been related to the major attempts to square God's justice with the presence of evil.
We would like to explore the intersections between literary modes of representations of evil and philosophical thought. Thus we invite authors to contribute to the current reflections on the problem of evil in literature. A critical look at the classical or recent literary manifestation of this issue will be most appreciated.
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