Richard A. Cohen, Professor of Philosophy, Chair of the Department of Jewish Thought, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York. Professor Cohen is one of the world’s preeminent Levinas scholars, author of several books on Levinas, the most recent of which is "Out of Control: Confrontations between Spinoza and Levinas" (2016), translator into English of four books by Levinas, and author of numerous articles in modern and contemporary continental philosophy.
The Richard S. Dinner Center for Jewish Studies, Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California
GTU Library Building (3rd floor)
Dinner Center for Jewish Studies Seminar Room
2400 Ridge Road
Berkeley, California 84709
For Levinas freedom is neither absolutely free, a “pure freedom,” as in Kant and Sartre, nor is it the philosopher’s knowledge of necessity, as in Spinoza and Hegel. Rather freedom is “difficult” because it is bound to morality in all the concreteness of responsibility to and for the other person. In this seminar we will examine several texts by Levinas on freedom in its relation to moral, social and political obligations, but especially in relation to the “free speech” that liberal governments are meant to respect and protect as a universal right of human beings and citizens.
- Mosado Goda, Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan. Thirty two years ago, Prof. Goda, in Paris studying the philosophy of Merleau-Ponty, discovered Emmanuel Levinas, and since then has devoted his life to research on Levinas and modern French Philosophy (also especially Vladimir Jankelevitch). He has published three monographs on Levinas: La pensée de Levinas: Berceau de l’espérence, 1989; Lire Levinas: Quotidiennté extraordinaire, 1999; and Levinas Vers une révolution de l’Etre, 2000; and translated his major works into Japanese, such as Totality and infinite, Otherwise than Being or Beyond Essence, and Difficult Freedom. Prof. Goda also attended the Levinas Decade (ten day) congress at Cerisy-la-Salle in 1986, at which Levinas himself participated.
- James M. McLachlan, Professor, Department of Philosophy and Religion, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA He has assisted at all four LPSS meetings; is author of The Desire to be God: Freedom and the Other in Sartre and Berdeyev (1992), a specialist in contemporary French thought, Personalism, as well as in Mormon theology.
- Viktoras Bachmetjevas, PhD; Teaching Assistant, Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania
- Batsheva Bertman, PhD candidate, Jewish Philosophy, Bar Ilan University, Israel
- Lorenza Bottacin Cantoni, PhD candidate, Department of Philosophy, Sociology, Educational Sciences and Applied Psychology, University of Padova, Italy
- Mosado Goda, Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan.
- Irina Poleshchuk, Post-Doctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland; Associate Professor, European Humanities University, Vilnius, Lithuania
- Carla Schriever, Lecturer, University of Oldenburg; PhD candidate, Institute of Philosophy, Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany
- Devorah Wainer, PhD; Honorary Associate, Department of Sociology & Social Policy, School of Social and Political Sciences Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of Sydney
- Feng-Wei Wu, Associate Professor, Philosophy Department, Chinese Culture University; President; Taiwan Philosophical Education Development Organization, Taipei, Taiwan
- Merridawn Duckler, artist/scholar, Portland, Oregon, USA
- Tomohiro Inukai, PhD candidate, Graduate School of Arts and Letters, Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan
- Jolanta Saldukaitytė, Phd, Philosophy, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Vilnius, Lithuania
- Richard A. Cohen, Professor of Philosophy, Chair of the Department of Jewish Thought, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York