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General International Symposium “Toward a world philosophy for the 22nd century”

General International Symposium “Toward a world philosophy for the 22nd century”

On October 10, 2015, the International Research Center for Philosophy held the General (Center-wide) international symposium “Toward a world philosophy for the 22nd century” at the Toyo University Hakusan Campus (Building 8, the 125th Anniversary Hall). The Center, which began in July 2011, marks its fifth and final year this year, and this General symposium was held to mark this auspicious occasion.

Following an opening message from KAWAMOTO Hideo (IRCP Researcher), the symposium began with a keynote lecture from Professor Georg STENGER (University of Vienna), entitled “Intercultural philosophy: A challenge for the entire field of philosophy.” In his lecture, Dr. STENGER explained in detail the following two propositions: “Philosophy must be intercultural not just with regard to external reasons such as sociopolitical issues and refugee issues but also with regard to fundamental internal philosophical reasons, and accordingly it must be based on the foundation of philosophizing.” “It is inconceivable that intercultural thought or philosophy could omit the processes of methodological and systematic elucidation, and the process of self-reflection that connects these.”Stenger

Next, during the symposium SAGARA Tsutomu (IRCP Researcher) presented on the topic “The uniqueness of acceptance of philosophy in Japan: From the perspective of a transformation in the view of nature,” as an overview of the activities of the 1st Unit of IRCP. Actively assessing the role played by translation in acceptance of Western philosophy, he suggested that there might be a need for research on intercultural translation in world philosophy in the future. Next, NAGAI Shin (IRCP Researcher) presented on the topic “The perspective of Iran in world philosophy.” The unique activities of the 3rd Unit of IRCP, intended to carry out “Research on Basis of Thought for the Society of Multicultural Harmonious Co-existence,” involve cultural exchange with Iran that began four years ago. NAGAI pointed out the possibility of building a new world philosophy by breaking down the framework of conflict between East and West through using Iran as a methodological perspective, since that nation could serve in an intermediary role between East and West not just in a geopolitical sense but also in the spheres of culture and thought. This presentation also served as a report on a September visit to Iran (see the separate article in this issue for details).

The general discussion, led by KAWAMOTO, featured a discussion by the three presenters, with YAMAGUCHI Ichiro (IRCP Visiting Researcher) serving as interpreter. Likening the development of a world philosophy for the 22nd century to a 100-meter dash, KAWAMOTO said that in its five years the Center had covered a distance of about two and one-half meters, identifying the need for continued further research. WATANABE Shogo (IRCP Researcher) delivered a closing message, wrapping up this symposium in which roughly 30 attendees discussed its subject topics in depth.