CASCA/IUAES 2017

Important dates

The keynote speakers for the CASCA/IUAES meeting of May 2017 are Lesley Green, University of Cape Town and Marc Abélès,  École des haute études en sciences sociales (ÉHÉSS, Paris). To read the abstract of their presentation, click below.

1) Lesley Green, University of Cape Town

Moving Knowledge 

The struggle to work with movement in knowledge is as old as the idea of knowledge itself: ancient Greek thinkers posed the knowledge of geometrical forms -- the sphere, the cube, the pyramid -- as the route to grasping the essence of the world. On the other side of the planet, ancient Chinese thinkers were working with the knowledge of the propensity of movement in a substance -- the notion of li -- as the basis of knowledge. What would modern knowledge have become if movement had been central in the debates of the ancient Mediterranean? The question comes to the fore in the Anthropocene, a time in which we begin to recognise changes in molecular flows -- of carbons, of nitrogens -- are altering the planet, yet our legal systems are ill-equipped to address a global commons that does not cooperate with territorial boundaries or with territorial law, or with the timeframes of electoral cycles. Contemporary social sciences, I suggest, demand from us an intellectual mobility across different authorisations of reason that would persuade us that they are the only way to know. Exploring fluidity and sedimentation; territory and flow; life time and geo-time, this paper explores a social science of movement that is itself mobile across disciplines, and across intellectual histories.

2) Marc Abélès,  École des haute études en sciences sociales (ÉHÉSS, Paris) 

For a heraclitean anthropology

How should one think of societies and the world in movement? Undoubtedly, this is one of the essential challenges faced by anthropology in a universe profoundly transformed by the intensification of flows.  Since a quarter of a century, there has been a multiplication of the descriptions and analyses of these mutations. Yet, one cannot stick to a prudent and routine empiricism. This would be as if the position of the observer had not changed since the heroic epoch of the founding fathers of anthropology. The simple fact of thinking the contemporary in terms of circulation, of frictions, and of tensions on the planet leads us to rethink our epistemological basics. In this orientation situated at the junction between anthropology and philosophy, we need to adopt a heraclitean point of view for questioning the issues of the present time. 

 

 

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