Summer School - What Makes Us Human? Philosophical and Religious Perspectives in China and the West, 4 - 15 July 2016, CEU

Central European University (CEU)


Event Date:

July 04, 2016 - July 05, 2016


Opportunity Cover Image - Summer School - What Makes Us Human? Philosophical and Religious Perspectives in China and the West, 4 - 15 July 2016, CEU
Explicitly or implicitly, the question of what makes us human has been a central and ongoing preoccupation among thinkers from antiquity to the present, and in intellectual traditions vastly removed from one another in time and space. That the question seems to be a fixture in the human imagination speaks not only to our need for self-understanding in the context of a broader world, but also to its relevance to issues of practical concern: how one conceptualizes the human has deep normative implications, grounding different moral systems, hierarchies of values, configurations of power and patterns of social interaction. That it has been answered in such diverse ways highlights the great stakes involved in this ongoing conversation. 
 
This course examines the complex and varied trajectory of how thinkers, in China and Europe, have sought to make sense of their humanness. Bringing together specialists in the philosophical and religious traditions of both civilizations, it focuses particularly on the early history of thinking about the human as approached through a diverse range of sources, from ethical and cosmological writings to medical treatises and case studies, to religious and literary texts (such as ancient tragedy). The goal of the course is to explore linkages among the various realms of thought and experience represented by these diverse genres: thus, how emergent conceptions of the cosmos, the spiritual world, and the workings of nature might have shaped the understanding of the human, and conversely, how thinking about what makes humans distinct (for instance, certain cognitive, ethical, creative, spiritual capacities) confronts the place of humans in the world at large. The latter part of the course will focus on later developments in medieval Christian theology and in Renaissance humanism. We will conclude with reflections on the contemporary relevance of the human as a category, and on what examination of past ways of thinking about the human bears upon issues of pressing concern in the present.

Target group

We invite applications from doctoral students, junior faculty and post-doctoral researchers working in relevant fields of either (or both) the Chinese or European intellectual traditions, such as: Philosophy, Intellectual history, Religion, History and Philosophy of Science, and Literature. Advanced M.A. students with a strong background in working with primary sources, and with research experience in topics relevant to the course, will also be considered

Pre-requisites

Advanced graduate training in the reading and analysis of some of the source materials studied in the course, as well as an active interest in the subject matter of the course. Students should come into the course with a substantial paper on a topic related to the course, which they will present during the student workshop sessions.

Language requirement

The language of instruction is English, thus all applicants have to demonstrate a strong command of spoken and written English to be able to participate actively in discussions at seminars and workshops. Some of the shortlisted applicants may be contacted for a telephone interview.

Program Costs

  • Tuition Fee: 550 EUR ("Early Bird" fee: 500 EUR)
  • Accommodation in CEU Residence Center:
    • In Single room: 28 EUR/ night / person - including breakfast
    • In Shared Double room: 17 EUR/ night / person - including breakfast
  • Estimated living costs: 210 - 250 EUR

Financial Aid

As the number of scholarships available is limited, funding offered by institutions or individuals is welcome so that we can invite more well qualified applicants. When choosing the financial aid package, please consider if you or your institution can contribute to the program expenses. Faculty and Ph.D. students are advised to approach their home departments for travel grants; researchers may have research grants available which can cover their participation; professionals may turn to their employers to fund their training at SUN. You can also consult some non-CEU funding opportunities listed in our FAQ sectionWhile selection of applicants will be based on the academic merit of the applications, those willing to bear the participation costs fully or partially will be preferred in case of equally strong applications.

Financial aid is available in the following categories:

  • tuition waiver
  • accommodation grant
  • travel grant (full or partial)
  • Participants from Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union and Mongolia, as well as those coming from emerging countries worldwide can apply for financial aid in all categories listed above.
  • Participants from developed countries are expected to pay tuition fee. However, there are a limited number of tuition waivers available on a competitive basis. Those who wish to apply for a tuition waiver should send a separate cover letter specifying their reasons.
  • Participants are NOT eligible to receive financial aid if they attended two CEU funded Summer University courses within a four-year period.
  • In case an applicant is accepted to two courses, which is only possible if the two courses are run consecutively, financial aid is only available for attending one course.

SUN Packages

All packages will include the following:

  • a minimum of 24 tuition hours per week
  • a certificate of attendance
  • access to course E-learning page (with readings, assignments, etc.)
  • access to CEU facilities (Library, IT services, sports centre including the use of the indoor swimming pool, tennis courts)
  • some social and cultural events depending on the course schedules (e.g. welcome and farewell reception / outings /fieldtrips / film screenings, etc.)

    How to apply


Eligible Countries
Host Country
Opportunities
Publish Date
November 09, 2015
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