World Congress of Philosophy, Rome, 1-8 August 2024

Call for Submissions

Philosophy and Psychoanalysis

Call for Submissions

World Congress of Philosophy, Rome, 1-8 August 2024

From: Chairpersons of Section 50: Philosophy and Psychoanalysis

Currently both psychoanalysis and philosophy are fragmented into a multitude of different approaches. This fragmentation indicates a richness of thought, and also serves as an occasion to reflect on connections, differences and possible links – thematic, interdisciplinary and interprofessional. 

Submissions are welcome on any topic relevant to philosophy and psychoanalysis or psychodynamic psychotherapy, from any theoretical orientation, and from the perspective of any discipline or profession, including from current or past patients/analysands. Purely clinical papers with no philosophical dimension should not be submitted. However, our aim is to organize those submissions accepted for presentation at the World Congress as far as possible into multidisciplinary thematic panels and thereby to intensify a dialogue between philosophy and psychoanalysis. We therefore especially welcome submissions on the following (or related) questions:

  • Philosophy has sometimes been conceived not as the pursuit of theoretical knowledge but as a life practice. What does psychoanalytic practice – the talking cure – have in common with philosophy so conceived? Can we say that they have common goals or ethics? What are the similarities and differences between their visions of living well? Where (if anywhere) are the boundaries between these visions? 
  • Psychoanalysis is concerned with the whole person, understood as the totality of human beings’ relational capacities. Does this bring psychoanalysis into conflict with the sciences of the brain? Is the conflict surmountable?
  • What is the unconscious? Is a meeting between philosophy and psychoanalysis possible on this crucial topic?
  • What, if anything, do psychoanalysis and psychiatry have to learn from one another? Does psychoanalysis still have anything to contribute to a philosophical and/or psychiatric understanding of psychosis? How should we think about the fact that psychoanalysis occupies a very different place in psychiatric training in different national traditions?
  • The differences between ‘schools’ of psychoanalytic thought: are they deep differences, and if so what are they? Or are they just differences in training, loyalties, style…?
  • Is Freud still relevant today, and if so, why?
  • Is it time for a rapprochement between psychoanalytic and phenomenological approaches to the mind, and to mental conditions such as anxiety, and (post-traumatic) stress disorder? Can philosophy enrich this discussion? 
  • Is it time for a reassessment of illness, including a more gender-sensitive understand of affects, anxiety and depression?
  • It is time to re-establish the main roles played by women (for example, von Salomé, Spielrein, Bonaparte, Klein, Aulagnier, Irigaray and many others) in the development of psychoanalysis?
  • How can we pursue a dialogue between philosophy and psychoanalysis? Which philosophers and which psychoanalysts are most useful here, and why?
  • The ‘voice’ of the psychoanalytic patient: How can people’s special needs and concerns – including age, class, disability, gender, ethnicity, language, migrations, etc. – be heard so that they can gain access to professional help? How can we foster knowledge production for recipients of psychoanalytic treatments so as to improve their treatment? 
  • How can the historically silenced roles of the body and of gender lead to a more complex understanding of health and well-being?
  • How do we develop a complex understanding of mental health that is duly sensitive to medical, gender and cultural considerations?
  • How can we gain a better understanding of the  phenomena of violence, racism, anti-Semitism, misogyny, hate-speech, gender-based killings, genocides, etc.?
  • Should philosophy pay more attention to the psychoanalysis of children?
  • How do we understand subjectivity in the context of alterity? Is subjectivity always ‘relational’?
  • What is the ideal future for psychoanalysis? What would (or should) psychoanalysis look like beyond the rich world?

Please see for instructions on how and where to submit your paper. The deadline for submissions is 10 November 2023, though papers received after that deadline but before 1 February 2024 may be accepted, depending on availability. For general information about the 2024 World Congress of Philosophy, please see . Please do not submit papers or abstracts directly to us.

Prof Felice Cimatti, Department of Political and Social Sciences, University of Calabria (Italy)

Prof Edward Harcourt, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Oxford (UK)

Dr Brigitta Keintzel, Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Philosophy and Education, University of Vienna (Austria)

Professor Romano Màdera, Department of Philosophy, University of Milan Bicocca; psychoanalyst (Italy)