April 22, 2014

Conference on Chinese Thought is April 25-26

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The Department of Philosophy at Southern Illinois University Carbondale will host the 10th annual Midwest Conference on Chinese Thought this weekend as Asian American Heritage Month comes to a close. 

Scholars from 12 universities will present papers and participate in discussions at the conference, which is Friday and Saturday, April 25 and 26.  All conference sessions will take place in Lawson Hall, Room 101.  The conference is free and open to the public. 

The event opens at 3 p.m. Friday with sessions that last until 5:30 p.m.  On Saturday, sessions will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with intermittent breaks.  At 4:15 p.m., Kai-wing Chow, a professor in the Department of History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will deliver the Leys Lecture and keynote address: “Ethics and Society: The Revival of Confucianism in Contemporary China.” 

A consortium of five universities including SIU take turns hosting the conference. Other universities involved are: DePaul University, Indiana University at Bloomington, North Central College and the University of Dayton.  

Douglas Berger, associate professor of philosophy and director of graduate studies for department, said the annual meeting is a way for professors and graduate students from the five universities and beyond to share their work in a setting that is layman-friendly and yet provides opportunities for scholarly discourse.  

Topics include Chinese philosophy, history, politics, literature and culture, with sessions focused on Chinese traditions, Confucianism, and the Chinese philosophy Dao.