CFP Deadline: Feb. 1, Conference, The Philosophy and Theology of Immortality, UK

January 25, 2015toFebruary 1, 2015

Paper proposals are invited for an international and interdisciplinary conference on “The Philosophy and Theology of Immortality,” 21-23 May 2015 and a Pre-Conference Workshop: 20 May 2015, at the University of Hull, UK.  A detailed CFP is available here.

The Conference:
Human beings, like other biological organisms, die and their bodies decay. But is death the end of existence or a gateway to an afterlife? The postponement of death or the hope for some form of post-mortem existence remain preoccupations of humanity, despite an overtly materialistic or secular stance in many Western societies. Whether this is understood as merely the temporary, though extreme, elongation of life or as life everlasting, these notions raise profound philosophical and theological questions relating to personal identity, the nature of the human person, the nature of consciousness and its contingency (or otherwise) on the body, the desirability and meaningfulness of indefinite existence, the badness of death and the goodness of life, the relationship between death and meaning, and so forth. Historically, religious traditions have claimed the prerogative of speculation and interpretation in all matters of eternal life and immortality. More recently, however, some people have turned to science and technology (e.g., cryogenics, nanotechnology, regenerative medicine, cybernetics, and mind uploading) for the realisation of what William Godwin once called ‘earthly immortality’.

Funded by a generous research grant from the Immortality Project at the University of California, Riverside (supported by the John Templeton Foundation), this event will focus on philosophical and theological issues pertaining both to traditional conceptions of immortality and contemporary ‘trans-humanist’ notions of radical life extension.

Paper Proposals:
The organizers welcome paper proposals on a broad range of philosophical and theological issues concerning immortality and radical life extension. In particular, the organizers are interested in papers that explore one or more of the following themes( please see website for more details on these themes).

  1. Identity and Immortality
  2. Mind and Immortality
  3. The Psychology and Science of Immortality
  4. Ethics of Immortality
  5. Trans-humanism and Immortality
  6. Theology and Immortality

Abstract Submission & Deadline:
Please submit a 300-400 word abstract and a brief bio including your institutional affiliation no later than 1st February 2015. All submissions will be peer reviewed. Accepted paper presentations should be no longer than 30 minutes. Please note that the abstracts cannot be revised after submission. Paper submissions should be directed to <submissionsAThull.ac.uk>. All other enquiries regarding the call for papers or the conference should be directed to <immortalityAThull.ac.uk>.

Pre-Conference Workshop:
The organizers will be holding a pre-conference workshop 20 May 2015 with invited guest speakers on philosophical and theological issues pertaining to transhumanism and radical life extension/immortality. Attendance at the workshop is free, though participants are asked to register for the workshop. More information about the workshop and the registration link for the workshop can be found online: http://www.hull.ac.uk/immortality.

Conference Funding / Costs / Registration:
Due to the generous grant from the Immortality Project, the organizers are pleased to be able to offer bursaries for speakers/delegates. Bursaries will cover the conference fee, refreshments, conference reception and conference dinner, a bus excursion to Beverley Minster (http://beverleyminster.org.uk/) and a generous subsidy for accommodation for two nights. In the first instance, bursaries shall be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis to speakers whose papers are accepted for presentation. If any bursaries remain, they will then be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis to postgraduate student delegates.

Registration details and registration fees for delegates without a bursary will be announced at the conference website.

 

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