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Conference "The Pleasure of Doubt in Art, Aesthetics, and Everyday Life"

International Research Training Group "Interart Studies" at Freie Universität Berlin from June 19 to 21, 2014

№ 180/2014 from May 21, 2014

Doubt as a transformative force in art, aesthetics, and everyday life is the theme of a conference being held by the International Research Training Group "InterArt" of Freie Universität Berlin from June 19 to 21, 2014. In contrast to modern philosophy and the humanities, where doubt is largely negative, the participants of this conference have a positive understanding of it. They view moments of doubt as possibilities for a creative transgression of one's intellectual and experiential horizon. The opening lecture will be given by Dieter Mersch from the Zurich University of the Arts. The topic will be "Doubt, Skepticism and Desperation. The Arrows of Paradox." All the lectures will be given in English. The conference is open to the public, and there is no charge.

In order to capture the transformative power of doubt, one has to look beyond purely intellectual changes, since doubt is not merely a state of mind, but rather a complex experience with an aesthetic-emotional dimension, as stated by the conference organizers. The conference papers will deal, on the one hand, with the aesthetic quality and the frame of doubt. On the other hand,  Zweifel. On the other hand, they will address the status of doubt in artistic practices and the idea of doubt as the core of an aethetics of existence.

The conference is being supported by the German Research Foundation. It is being in cooperation with the Institute for Cultural Inquiry (ICI Berlin).

Time and Location

  • Thursday, June 19, to Saturday, June 21, 2014
  • ICI Berlin, Institute for Cultural Inquiry, Christinestraße 18/19, Haus 8-D, 10119 Berlin; subway station: Senefelderplatz (U2)

Further Information

  • Dr. Jörg Volbers, Institute of Philosophy, Freie Universität Berlin, Tel: +49 30 838-55883, Email:
  • Dr. Mark Halawa-Sarholz, Postdoc, International Research Training Group "Interart Studies," Freie Universität Berlin, Tel.: +49 30 838-54102, Email

Link to the Conference Schedule