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Global Enlightenment Conference @Princeton University
Thursday, April 6, 2017 (All day) to Saturday, April 8, 2017 (All day)

Princeton University 

The conference aims to scrutinize unexamined legacies of the Enlightenment from a global perspective. Until recently, the long-eighteenth century (c.1660-1820) was understood as the historical era during which the West became secular in its intellectual, cultural and political institutions. But over the past two decades, scholars have radically redefined Enlightenment both as concept and epoch.

Our Global Enlightenment symposium seeks to advance the terms of this critical intervention by bringing the Middle East, the Asia-Pacific regions, and India into conversation with American and European perspectives. Our goal is to put leading scholars working in different regions of the globe in conversation in order to generate a collaborative, global conversation.

We anticipate addressing such themes as ongoing conflicts within Christianity and other major world religions; and the existence of pluralism both within and as a result of global Enlightenment movements.We focus on understanding both religious conflict and global exchange as defining aspects of how modernity gets constructed during the Enlightenment period and beyond.

Some questions that motivate the conference include:

Once we have eliminated the inaccuracies and limits of former historical narratives of Enlightenment, where do we go? How do we begin to reassemble intellectual history in the face of a conceptual frame that is as complex and fragmented as it is axiomatic? By questioning the legacies of Enlightenment, can we also find insights into the present, particularly the ever-pressing concern of how religious fundamentalism across the globe competes with and interrupts our understanding of enlightened modernity?

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