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Call for Papers: Comenius and Pansophia – Search for System, Method and Harmony of All Things (Naarden / Amsterdam, 12-15 November 2020)

2020-02-14 00:16 | ESSWE admin (Administrator)

International conference to commemorate
loannes Amos Comenius (1592-1670)
and the 350th anniversary of his death

Naarden / Amsterdam The Netherlands
12-15 November 2020

Pansophia was one of the lead ing principles - if not the most important one - in the work of loannes Amos Comenius 1592-1670). However, the idea of pansophia represented much broader intellectual current in the early modern thought. The conference will address the pansophia phenomenon as interpreted by Comenius, his forerunners, followers and critics. For Comenius, pansophia means the system of universal knowledge, which represents harmony of all things. As a theologian, he grounded this idea metaphysically as the divine order of all things. As a pedagogue, he wanted to teach "everything to everyone". As a universal reformer, he proposed an emendation of human affairs: philosophy (or knowledge), religion and politics.˙

The topics of papers may include, but are not limited to:

  • The sources of Comenius' pansophism.
  • The interpretations of pansophism by Comenius and his contemporaries.
  • The relation of pansophism to other elements of Comenian thought such as encyclopaedism, educational theory, theology, sciences, millenarianism, prophecy, irenicism, politics and universal reform.
  • The connection of pansophism to other intellectual and philosophical systems and systems of worldview, such as established traditions like Aristotelianism, Neo-Platonism, Neo-Stoicism, Art of Memory, Renaissance Philosophy in general, mainstream Calvinism, Lutheranism, Roman Catholicism, Judaism, or alternative traditions like Lullism, Hermeticism, Rosicrucianism and Esotericism.
  • Comenius' contemporaries and their ideas, interpretations and criticism of pansophism and related questions. The reception of early modern pansophism in later times and other contexts.

The conference is held at the occasion of the 350-year commemoration of loannes Amos Comenius' death (1592-1670), and it is organized by the Comenius Museum and Mausoleum in Naarden, the Netherlands, in cooperation with LEARN ! research institute on learning and education, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Museum of Jan Amos Comenius, Uhersky Brod, the lnstitute of Philosophy at the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, the Deutsche Comenius Gesellschaft, Berlin, the Comenius Forschungsstelle, Alfter by Bonn, and the Embassy ofthe Free Mind, Amsterdam.

Presenters are asked to send an abstract (100-300 words, in English or German) and a short academic biography (including name, degree, and current affiliation) by 1 March 2020 to

The conference committee will make the final selections by 15 April 2020.

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