I was recently invited to participate in a conference at the University of Cologne from November 6–9, which organized a conference on the “Cologne Constellation” of Philosophical Anthropology, critically assessing the relevance of the works of Max Scheler, Helmuth Plessner, and Nicolai Hartmann for our understanding of the human being and the methodology of an interdisciplinary anthropology today.

My paper brought some of Hartmann’s ontological and anthropological ideas to bear on models of the human in environmental philosophy, and argued that Hartmann’s stratified model of the human allows us to avoid reductionism and appreciate the ecological asymmetrical dependence of humans on nonhuman nature.

Philosophische Anthropologie als interdisziplinäre Praxis: Scheler, Plessner, Hartmann und die Kölner Konstellation – historische und systematische Perspektiven


I was recently part of a panel discussion concerning the role of the arts in relation to the issue of climate change, hosted by The Lunder Institute for American Art at Colby College. This panel was meant to accompany the Colby Museum exhibition organized by Lunder Institute Fellow Phong Bui, Occupy Colby: Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy, Year 2.

The transcript of this discussion will be published in The River Rail: Occupy Colby, a special edition of The Brooklyn Rail co-published by the Lunder Institute and the Colby Museum.