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Call for Papers - Thought in Science and Fiction

Type: Call for Papers
Date: --
12th International Conference \"Thought in Science and Fiction\", Ankara 2010 (

The organizers of the 12th conference of ISSEI, to be held at Çankaya University, Ankara, Turkey invite scholars from various disciplines such as History, Politics, Literature, Art, Philosophy, Science, and Religion, to re-examine, redefine and reassess the scope of interdisciplinary dialogue in the past and present.

The conference is divided into five sections:

1. History, Geography, Science

2. Politics, Economics, Law

3. Education, Sociology, Women’s Studies

4. Literature, Art, Music, Theatre, Culture

5. Religion, Philosophy, Anthropology, Psychology, Language

Workshop on the Divine Omnipotence in Medieval European Thought (

Chair: Filip Ivanovic

One of the questions that presented itself with the rise and development of the Christian faith was the problem of divine omnipotence. By resolving the problem of divine power, it became possible to explain many focal problems of mankind and the world, including, for example, the problem of the existence of evil, or of suffering.

Usually, the eleventh-century theologian Peter Damiani is pointed to as a pioneer and originator of the discussion of divine powers. St. Isidor Pelusiot’s considerations were developed five centuries before Damiani wrote his famous treatise De divina omnipotentia. The debate in Scholasticism emerged as a long and lively discussion of different ways of defining the problem. The distinction of potentia absoluta and potentia ordinata contributed greatly to debating the general question of divine omnipotence. However, although it was useful in the theological-philosophical sense, this distinction later on provoked political solutions which sometimes served the interest of only one man (for example, the authority of the pope and the request of Henry VIII regarding the annulment of his marriage).

The aim of this workshop is to reconsider the attribute of the divine power as elaborated during the Middle Ages, in both Western and Byzantine cultural spheres, in theological, philosophical, literary works (papers that deal with Byzantine tradition are particularly encouraged). Papers that point out the contemporary significance of the problem are especially welcome.

The themes suitable for the workshop could include, but are not limited to, the following questions:

1) The divine omnipotence in the West and in Byzantium

2) The anthropological issues – human will, divine will, the problem of will in Christ

3) The problem of evil in relation to the divine power

4) Political issues – popes, kings, emperors, State-Church

5) The creation – relationships creator-creature, divine nature-divine will

6) Ockham on divine omnipotence

7) Contingency of the world

8) The relationship between ancient religion/philosophy/literature and medieval religion/philosophy/literature

9) Divine power in medieval and contemporary perspectives (for example traditional theology vs. process theology)

Abstracts of ca. 300 words should be sent by e-mail to: Filip Ivanovic