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Political Demonology: The Logic of Evil in Contemporary Literature and Theology

This conference brings philosophers of religion, political theorists and literary scholars together to frame approaches to the problem of political evil–a project one might call ‘political demonology’–for our contemporary political and cultural crisis.

What or who is the political enemy? What is political evil or sin? If we are living in the age of ‘the complete triumph of the individual’ (Gilles Chatelet), then the status of ‘individuality,’ ‘subjectivity,’ and ‘soul’ must be attended to within this context. But if individuality is coming to some kind of end (post-modern, post-capitalist, post-material, or otherwise), what moral-political regime is, or should be, appearing on the horizon? And what, then, is the meaning, place, and aesthetic of evil as a political phenomenon? Would the transformation of the individual mean liberation, oblivion, or even new forms of violence? And what is the role of statehood or the social? Through this interdisciplinary dialogue we seek to reformulate our own definitions, even as various contemporary crises violently reformulate them for us.

# Episode Title Description People Date
1 Creative Commons Shakespeare and Machiavellian Politics of Violence, Closing Keynote Closing Keynote: Elizabeth Frazer (University of Oxford) gives the closing keynote for the Political Demonologies conference, held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Elizabeth Frazer 13 Sep 2016
2 Creative Commons The pessimistic anthropology of liberalism vs. the Good Adrian Pabst (University of Kent) gives a talk for Session 3: Demonologies of the Soul – Beyond Evil, part of the Political Demonologies conference, held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Adrian Pabst 13 Sep 2016
3 Creative Commons Going Beyond Evil in Theory, Politics and Practice Max Muir (University of Oxford) gives a talk in session 3 Demonologies of the Soul – Beyond Evil, part of the Political Demonology conference, held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Max Muir 13 Sep 2016
4 Creative Commons ‘“Political Theology” or “Occasional Decisionism”? On the Formal Character of Carl Schmitt’s Political Theology’ Bruno Godefroy (Universities of Erlangen and Lyon) gives a talk in Session 2: Political (Dis-) Orders, part of the Political Demonologies conference held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Bruno Godefroy 13 Sep 2016
5 Creative Commons The Dialectics of Individualism and Totalitarianism in Charles de Koninck, David Foster Wallace, and Michel Houellebecq Edmund Waldstein, O.Cist. (Heiligenstift, Austria), gives the first talk in Session 2: Political (Dis-) Orders, part of the Political Demonology conference, held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Edmund Waldstein 13 Sep 2016
6 Creative Commons Modernist Myths of the Fall Henry Mead (Teesside University) gives the third talk in Session 1, (Demono-) Logics, at the Political Demonology conference, held at Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Henry Mead 13 Sep 2016
7 Creative Commons The Two Deaths of Osama Bin Laden –Demonic Repetition in Contemporary Culture Tom Grimwood (University of Cumbria) gives the second talk for Session 1; (Demono-) Logics Political Demonology conference, held in Worcester College on 20th May 2016. Tom Grimwood 13 Sep 2016
8 Creative Commons The Nightmare that Dreams: The Soul and Nihilism - Opening Keynote Conor Cunningham (University of Nottingham) gives the opening keynote in the Political Demonology conference, held at Worcester College Oxford on 20the May 2016. Conor Cunningham 13 Sep 2016