The 11th Next-Generation Global Workshop

The 11th Next-Generation Global Workshop

Theme: Self, Others and Community

Date: November 10, 11, 2018

Venue: Faculty of Letters Main Building, Kyoto University

 

The Purposes of the Next-Generation Global Workshop

The Next-Generation Global Workshop (NGGW) has been held annually since 2008 to provide an opportunity for early-career scholars to present their research and to have feedback from an international audience. It has proved to be a pleasant and effective way for capacity building through mentorship of professors from different universities in different areas of the world. It has also provided invaluable opportunities for all participants to learn from their fellow participants with different perspectives and to deepen the understanding of various social phenomena issues in the world, particularly in Asia. Ultimately, the NGGW has served as a forum for scholars of different generations from various regions to build a common academic foundation by redefining Asia in the global context.

 

Theme: Self, Others and Community

 

The ideas of self, others and community are closely interwoven with each other. Also they may differ from one society to another, and one era to another. In the 11th NEXT GENERATIONS GLOBAL WORKSHOP, we will explore how those ideas are formed and interrelated one another in a given social and historical setting, from the viewpoint of philosophy, sociology, literature and other disciplines in humanities and social sciences. We will also emphasize Asian perspectives on those ideas, though not excluding any others.

Over millennia, philosophers have asked what self is, how we can know the existence of others and what community we ought to build, for instance. Some philosophers advocate an individualistic view, according to which an individual self exists without knowing others, and only after we come to know each other, we go on to form our community. But others tried to overturn such order, claiming that community and knowledge of others are constitutive to formation of our selves. We will raise those and other questions regarding the three key ideas, consulting various philosophical traditions contemporary and classical, and in the East and the West.

In the course of history, cultural practices such as literature and art have transferred the described conditions concerning self, others and community into the realm of imagination. In accordance with the rise of print capitalism in modern society in the West, literary works started to offer ideal examples of self-image of Christian white heterosexual males, while figures of cultural or ethnic others (Jews, Muslims, Orientals, Asians, Africans, so-called barbarians, women, homosexuals etc.) in the same books presented negative counterparts of those ideals. This binary model (self/others), prepared and practiced by activities in small communities such as reading circles and salons, contributed to the formation of larger (imagined) communities such as nations or religious groups. Whether we can find alternatives to this model somewhere (for example in Eastern traditions) or not is an open question which we might well discuss in our workshop.

The three concepts of self, others and community also play key roles in the studies of societies. Some disciplines, such as economics and psychology, are based on a more individualistic view, and others, on a more communitarian view of the society. In the recent decades, the individualistic view is increasingly more dominant in accordance with the expansion of the global market. The transformation of the welfare state in discourse and reality is a most visible example. Interestingly, the Eastern welfare states are said to be less communitarian than their Western counterparts. On the other hand, the search for adequate theories to involve others can be found in various contexts. Care of others has been established as a subject of social studies. Who are “we” to be protected by the community and who are others to be excluded is a serious political issue in the age of globalization.

 

Provisional Program of the Workshop

 

DAY 1: November 10

Opening addresses Keynote speech (TBC)

Sessions: Presentations by students and early-career scholars with comments and discussions by advisors (professors and experts from various universities)

 

DAY 2: November 11

Sessions: Presentations by students and early-career scholars with comments and discussions by advisors (professors and experts from various universities)

Special lectures: By professors and experts from various universities

Wrap-up session

 

Contact:

Organizing Committee of the 11th Next-Generation Global Workshop, KUASU

Yasuo Deguchi, Takashi Kawashima, Emiko Ochiai, Wako Asato, Takuro Onishi, Yurie Hisada (Kyoto University)

Email: kuasu.nextgenerationbun.kyoto-u.ac.jp(★→@)