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Forms of Experience and the System of the Arts | Call for Abstracts

A philosophy conference on ‘Forms of Experience and the System of the Arts’ will be held at the Università di Genova, 22-24 May 2024

The arts have often been studied in relation to ‘aesthetic experience’, however, it is possible that an over-reliance on the notion of ‘aesthetic’ obscures the myriad ways in which different types of art relate to different types of experience. By analysing and connecting the concept of art and the concept of experience this conference aims to produce a revised and reconsidered account of ‘the system of the arts’. Its working hypothesis is that the variety of the forms of experience can help us to understand how different arts can be unified in a system as well as their specificities within that system.

Research questions for papers may include but are not limited to:

•    What notion of experience is best suited to explain our responses to art?
•    Do we really need ‘the aesthetic’ to characterise experiential responses to art?
•    Can we classify forms of art on the basis of the experiences they elicit?
•    What role do non-perceptual experiences –such as agentive phenomenology, cognitive phenomenology, or mental imagery– play in our appreciation and classification of artworks? 
• Can the traditional distinction between arts of space and arts of time be elucidated by thinking about temporal and spatial experience? 
•    How can recent work in philosophy of experience allow us to modify/augment the idea of a ‘system of the arts’ so that it can better accommodate more contemporary forms of art (e.g. conceptual art, mass art)?
•    Can a focus on experience help us to determine the similarities and differences between works of art and technical artifacts? 
•    How can reflection on the sorts of experience generated by a form of art aid us in situating that art form within the system of the arts?
•    Is the notion of the system of the arts still relevant to aesthetics? Given the varieties of forms of art, can the notion of experience shed light on the possibility of such a system?

Invited Speakers:

Chris Bartel (Appalachian State University)
Tim Crane (Central European University, Vienna)
John Kulvicki (Dartmouth College)
Keren Gorodeisky (Auburn University)
Antonia Peacocke (Stanford University)
Enrico Terrone (Università di Genova) 

Call for Abstracts:

Please submit proposals by writing to: pea@unige.it. Submissions should be done as PDF files prepared for blind review. Please submit abstracts between 500 and 1000 words (references excluded) together with a title and 3 keywords.

The deadline for receipt is Sunday, March 3, 2024.
Speakers will be notified of decisions by Wednesday, March 14, 2024. 

There will be no conference fees and it will be possible to apply for bursaries for early-career researchers.