Theology and Philosophy

Simone Weil Lecture on Human Value

Democracy as Human Value: On the Idea of Ethical Citizenship

Professor Lenart Škof

Lecture details

Monday 26 June 2017
6pm for 6.30pm
ACU Leadership Centre
Level 3, Cathedral House
229 Elizabeth Street, Brisbane
Thursday 29 June 2017
6pm for 6.30pm 

Mercy Lecture Theatre
ACU Melbourne Campus
115 Victoria Parade, Fitzroy

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Lecture overview

Throughout the world we are facing the demise of democratic hope. The great American intellectual Richard Rorty has referred to this hope by quoting from Walt Whitman's Democratic Vistas, taking democracy in his own way as an eschatological event. We also know that for John Dewey, in a similarly idiosyncratic manner, the idea of democracy was linked to great ideals of a religious life. In this lecture I reflect on the ethical and spiritual foundations of the idea of democracy, defending democracy as a moral ideal and human value that is in urgent need of nurturing in these turbulent times.

About Professor Lenart Škof

Lenart Škof is Professor of Philosophy and Head of the Institute for Philosophical Studies at the Science and Research Centre of Koper, Slovenia. His main research interests lie in ethics, new cosmology, intercultural and Indian philosophy (he has translated Yajurvedic Upanishads from the Sanskrit), the philosophy of American pragmatism, and the philosophy of Luce Irigaray. He is an author of several books, including Pragmatist Variations on Ethical and Intercultural Life (2012) and Breath of Proximity: Intersubjectivity, Ethics and Peace (2015), and has co-edited Breathing with Luce Irigaray (2013) and Poesis of Peace: Narratives, Cultures and Philosophies (2017; forthcoming).

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About the Simone Weil Lecture on Human Value

The Simone Weil Lecture on Human Value was first held in 2000, an initiative of Professor Raimond Gaita. It is a public lecture held annually in Brisbane and Melbourne.

Each year, a distinguished international scholar is invited to give a public lecture and academic seminar at ACU. The lectures are not intended to be a forum for engaging specifically with the work of Simone Weil, but are inspired by Weil's commitment to recognising the full humanity of our fellow human being, by her moral idealism and by her commitment to social justice issues.

An archive of past Simone Weil lectures is available via the menu on the left-hand side of this page.