The Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center is dedicating its 24th annual symposium to the late philosopher Paul Ricoeur’s life and thought. Paul Ricoeur and Phenomenology will be held Friday, March 17 and Saturday, March 18 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Room 214 of Hanley Hall on campus.While many philosophers take a dim world view, Ricoeur spoke of hope. He looked at humans holistically, despite losing his father as a toddler and being taken prisoner in World War II. To Ricoeur, humans could not be reduced simply to subconscious drives or biochemical brain reactions, but needed to be studied for the entire depth of expression. His works cover topics including freedom and evil, individual action and will, and the essence of language. He was known in academic circles for being well versed in American and European philosophies, having taught at universities abroad and in the United States.
Ricoeur played a critical role in assisting Duquesne as it established its center for phenomenological thought.
“Duquesne’s international reputation as a center for phenomenology was established in part because of its close relationship with Dr. Ricoeur,” said Dr. Dan Martino, director of the Silverman Center. “To acknowledge his critical support and to propel his work into the 21st century, we are proud to dedicate our annual symposium to addressing the important role Dr. Ricoeur has played in the phenomenological movement.”
Free and open to the public, the symposium will feature panel discussions and presentations from scholars including Dr. Morny Joy, professor of religious studies at the University of Calgary; Dr. Peter Kemp, chair of philosophy of education at the Danish University of Education; Dr. Lenore Langsdorf, professor of speech communication at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale; and Dr. David Pallauer, professor of philosophy at DePaul University in Chicago.