Conference "Living, Life, Evolution"
Celebrating the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species (Riga, the University of Latvia, November 27, 2009)
This year we celebrate 200 years since Charles Darwin’s birth and 150 years since the publications of his masterwork Origin of Species on the 24th of November, 1859. Although Darwin is primarily considered a naturalist and biologist whose theory of natural selection still influences biology, ethology, genetics and other natural sciences, the impact of Darwin’s ideas is much wider and they have left their mark on philosophy, literature and art, political thought and ideologies.
The conference Living, Life, Evolution aims to bring in focus philosophical aspects of Darwin’s ideas which quite often are ignored by philosophers, one can remember the well-known claim by Richard Dawkins that „philosophy and the subjects known as ‘humanities’ are still taught almost as if Darwin had never lived”. At the same time, the conference hopes to address more general themes of living nature and „biology” („a study of life”) in philosophy. Therefore, we suggest the following themes for proposals of papers: The philosophical framework of evolutionary theories; History and contemporary developments of the philosophy of nature; Natural history, dialectics and genealogy; Order and teleology in the natural world; Organs, organisms and superorganisms; Human/animal distinction; Evolution of spirit, mind and reason.