"Beauty will save the world," writes Dostoevsky, yet beauty is seen by many as a weak and expendable arrow in the metaphysical quiver that includes the more robust good and true. Many think of beauty as a mere decoration of human life, a luxury rather than a spiritual necessity. There is indeed a great deal of Kitsch that masquerades as art, and it is not surprising if such "beauty" is not taken seriously. But authentic beauty can have the transformative, even salvific, effects that Dostoevesky ascribes to it.
We invite papers that do justice to the particular power of beauty to renew both individual persons and also entire communities. We invite our participants to go beyond a formal defense of the existence of beauty, to glimpse not just the most general traits of beauty, but to capture its power to impart new life, its deep affinity with love, its power to awaken deep aspirations in the human heart. In other words, we invite papers that explore beauty not only metaphysically but also concretely and phenomenologically. We also welcome papers that explore the reasons for the hostility to beauty that some have expressed. We look forward to papers that make heard again the voices of Western philosophy on beauty, voices from Plato to St. Thomas Aquinas to Hegel, including contemporary voices such as Maritain, Ingarden, and von Hildebrand. Artists in philosophical reflection on art are also welcome to submit.
Send paper title and 400-word abstract by September 1, 2014 to firstname.lastname@example.org. Inquiries to email@example.com.
This contest seeks to support scholarship on the part of graduate students with a strong interest in the role of aesthetics.
Three winners will receive all-expenses-paid trips to Steubenville to present their paper at the conference.
To be considered for the contest, submissions may address any topic under the general guidelines, but should also engage substantially with the philosophy of Dietrich von Hildebrand
Graduates students are free to apply under the general application guidelines stated above. However, to participate in the essay contest and to be considered for one of the three prizes, contestants must submit not just an abstract but the full text of their paper (3,000 words or less) no later than September 15th, 2014.
Submit paper to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Hildebrand Project is the world’s leading organization dedicated to the presentation and exploration of the thought and witness of Dietrich von Hildebrand. An original philosopher, ardent Christian, fierce foe of Nazism, and fervent champion of beauty, von Hildebrand defends the timeless truths of our Western patrimony while at the same time eagerly receiving and enriching the insights of modernity.
View the Power of Beauty conference schedule.
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