Human Nature and the Construction of the State: Hobbes and Spinoza


Time: 26th August, 9.00 am – 5 pm

Place: Muniment Room, Main Quad, University of Sydney

Organiser: Anik Waldow



9.15-10.30 Duncan Ivison (Sydney): “Hobbesian Liberty”

10.45-12.00 Daniel Garber (Princeton): “Hobbes vs. Spinoza on Human Nature”

12.00-1.15 Moira Gatens (Sydney): “Spinoza on Human Nature … As It Really Is …”

2.15-3.30 Michael LeBuffe (Otago): “Hobbes and Spinoza on the Individual and the State”

3.45-5.00 Beth Lord (Aberdeen): “Debt, Charity, and Redistribution in Spinoza’s State”

This event has been made possible with the support of the Sydney Centre for the Foundations of Science and the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry of the University of Sydney.

Inquiries: anik.waldow@sydney.edu.au

5th North Sea Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy, in conjunction with the St Andrews Institute of Intellectual History




St Andrews, Scotland

10 – 11 October 2014


Invited keynote speakers: Hannah Dawson (New College of the Humanities) & Lena Haldenius (Lund)

Submissions (in the form of either a c. 500 word abstract or a full paper) can be on any theme in early modern political thought, but abstracts/papers on natural rights will be especially welcome. Send abstract or paper prepared for blind review to: jah15@st-and.ac.uk


Graduate students are especially encouraged to submit abstracts/papers. Two paper slots will be reserved for graduate students. The accommodation and subsistence of those two students will be covered, and a contribution will be made to their travel expenses.


For further information, please contact James Harris, Philosophy, St Andrews (jah15@st-and.ac.uk)

Organizing committee: James Harris (St Andrews), Willem Lemmens (Antwerp), Eric Schliesser (Ghent)

Conference at the University of Marburg, 15-16 September 2014.

Please see Conference programme and information in this PDF:  The Dutch Legacy flyer

Contact: Dr. Sonja Lavaert, sonja.lavaert@vub.ac.be

The Bucharest Graduate Conference in Early Modern Philosophy

Fifth Edition: 28-29 November 2014


Keynote speakers:

John Henry (University of Edinburgh)

Arianna Borrelli (Technical University of Berlin)


The Center for Logic and History & Philosophy of Science at the University of Bucharest is organizing its fifth graduate conference for advanced master and PhD students working on early modern philosophy. The event will be held on November 28-29, 2014 at the University of Bucharest, Romania.

We cordially invite graduate students to submit abstracts on any topic related to early modern philosophy at bucharest.graduate.conference@gmail.com by August 20, 2014. Abstracts should not exceed 500 words and should be prepared for blind review. Papers will be given 40 minutes (30 minutes talk, 10 minutes open discussion). The Program Committee will notify authors of its decision by September 10.

Conference fee: € 40.

For any further questions, you can get in touch with us via email or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BucharestGradConference.

Message follows from Jeroen M. M. van de Ven. Please respond to him if interested: J.M.M.vandeVen@uu.nl

“I would like to call upon all Spinoza scholars to send me information of known copies of Spinoza’s work, 1663 up to 1796, preserved in libraries around the world and, more importantly, surviving copies kept in private collections.

This all will contribute to a new descriptive bibliography of Spinoza’s works I am preparing for the Dutch NWO-funded project ‘Spinoza’s Web’ (under supervision of Prof dr P.L.M. Steenbakkers).

Of course, I did a lot of research in locating copies in the greater libraries, but I am also interested in copies preserved in smaller libraries and institutions, museums or private collections.

All information will be dealt with confidentially. Should scholars, particularly bibliographers, be interested in cooperation and willing to provide with information on copies extant, they can send me an email at the following address:


For now, I would like to know in principle only:

  •  the complete text of the title page of a copy, its location and shelf number.

If interested, scholars are invited to act as contributors to the bibliography.


Dr Jeroen M. M. van de Ven
Postdoc researcher (NWO project ‘Spinoza’s Web’)
Utrecht University
Faculty of Humanities
Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies.”

6 September 2014

University of Groningen

Organization: Andrea Sangiacomo

Speakers: Matt Kisner, Keith Green, Ursula Renz, Beth Lord

Spinoza’s philosophy has been both celebrated and reviled for its strict commitment to a kind of naturalism, according to which all aspects of human beings are to be understood in fundamentally the same way that we understand any other natural phenomena. Spinoza takes this to imply, most controversially, that our volitions are determined by prior causes, which leads him to deny that humans possess free will in the sense of a spontaneous power for determining one’s own actions in isolation from external things. Although one might take this to imply that Spinoza rules out the possibility of freedom and autonomy, Spinoza insists on the possibility and importance of freedom, a form of self-determination, which philosophers today would describe as autonomy. This workshop aims to bring together scholars interested in the nature of Spinoza’s relational conception of autonomy and its relevance to present day theorizing about relational autonomy.

Information, programme, and registration here: http://www.ozsw.nl/ai1ec_event/spinoza-and-relational-autonomy/?instance_id

11th-12th October 2014
University of Jyväskylä, Finland

Keynote speaker
Alison Simmons (Harvard): “Mind-Body Union: Descartes and the Limits of Metaphysics”

In a joint effort by philosophers in Finland and Hungary, the Seminar was founded to promote international cooperation among scholars of seventeenth and eighteenth century philosophy. The first meeting was held in 2013 in the Central European University, Budapest. This will be the second annual meeting in a continuous series of seminars.

We invite prospective participants to send an abstract of about 500 words on any topic in early modern philosophy to fhsemp2014@jyu.fi by 1st of July 2014. Completed papers should aim at a reading time of 40 minutes or less.

Please note that FHSEMP cannot provide funding for travel or accommodation.

Organizing and program committee: Vili Lähteenmäki (Jyväskylä), Mike Griffin (CEU), and Valtteri Viljanen (Turku).

For all further information, please contact fhsemp2014@jyu.fi


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