Leviathan Unbound: Hobbes Across the Disciplines

Department: Humanities Center

Date and Time: December 9, 2021 - December 11, 2021 | 10:00 AM-3:00 PM

Event Location: Zoom

Event Details

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Join the UCI Center for Early Cultures for a three-day conference

Leviathan Unbound:
Hobbes Across the Disciplines


This three-day virtual conference on Hobbes’ perennially controversial work, Leviathan, takes advantage of its academic setting, whose disciplinary borders arguably create something like the “silo effect” much lamented in America’s currently divisive politics. This conference occasions an experiment in the permeability of academic borders, since Hobbes’ book is a cynosure for a remarkable number of academic fields.

Each field inevitably understands the text within the framework of its analytical values and methods, with the result that the different constructions academe has placed on his words have produced as many Leviathans as there are fields which claim him for their own.

On Thursday (12/9) and Friday (12/10), UCI Faculty will be joined by several leading Hobbes scholars from numerous institutions:

Kinch Hoekstra, Chancellor’s Professor of Law and Political Science, UC Berkeley

Jayne Lewis, Professor of English, UCI

S.A. Lloyd, Professor of Philosophy and Law, USC

James Martel, Professor of Political Science, San Francisco State

Ted H. Miller, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Alabama

Markku Peltonen, Academy Professor of Philosophy, History and Art Studies, University of Helsinki

Victoria Silver, Professor of English, UCI

Tracy Strong, Professor of Political Theory and Philosophy, University of Southampton and Distinguished Emeritus Professor of Political Science, UC San Diego

Keith Topper, Associate Professor of Political Science, UCI

See the conference schedule here

For questions about Thursday and Friday, please contact the organizers: Keith Topper, Associate Professor of Political Science (ktopper@uci.edu) and Victoria Silver, Professor of English (vasilver@uci.edu)

On Saturday (12/11), UCI graduate students will deliver short papers exploring Hobbes' work as well as disciplinary distinctions and problems in contemporary academic method. They will trace how a given discipline organizes analysis according to its intrinsic assumptions, values, purposes, and modes of engagement with texts.

Graduate student speakers will include:

Juan Carlos “JC” Fermin, English, UC Irvine

Chelsea Lee, English, UC Irvine

Peter Thomas, History, UCLA

Joseph Warren, Political Science, UC  Berkeley

See the grad conference schedule here

For questions about Saturday's grad conference, please contact the organizer: Holly Weaver, Graduate Student, Political Science (hrweaver@uci.edu)

This conference is co-sponsored by the UCI Center for Early Cultures, the UCI Humanities Center, and the UCI Department of Political Science