CfA: Metaphysics after the 'Scientific Revolution'

Metaphysics after the ‘Scientific Revolution’ (1687-1781)
October 2-3, 2017
University of Bucharest, Institute for Research in the Humanities and the Faculty of Philosophy
Submission deadline: August 1, 2017

Confirmed keynote speakers:
Paola Basso (University of Bucharest)
Andrew Janiak (Duke University)
Anne-Lise Rey (University of Lille)
(further speakers to be announced shortly)
Organized by:
Tinca Prunea-Bretonnet (University of Bucharest) and Grigore Vida (University of Bucharest)
The purpose of this conference is to investigate the redefinition of metaphysics in the period from Newton’s Principia, marking the apex of the so-called ‘Scientific Revolution’, to Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason. During this time metaphysics underwent significant transformations in response to the radical challenges posed by the new physics and empiricism. The Newtonian paradigm became dominant, but there was growing dissatisfaction with what was regarded as its lack of metaphysical foundation. The German Enlightenment continued to promote a strong speculative metaphysics; elsewhere in Europe, the ‘aversion to Metaphysics’, as it was once called, was gradually counterbalanced by renewed interest in metaphysics. New attempts were made to ‘save’ metaphysics and reconcile Newton and Leibniz (for example) and, more broadly, to accomplish a new philosophical synthesis, which would address both the rejection of traditional metaphysics (understood as metaphysica generalis and metaphysica specialis, the latter comprising three disciplines) and the aspiration to provide a firm and universal foundation for morals and physics.
We welcome proposals on the European Enlightenment in general on any topic related to the conference theme. Proposals may address (but are not limited to) the following questions:
How did Newtonian physics influence the German speculative metaphysics? Were several metaphysical doctrines in competition in the first half of the 18th century? Can we talk about an epistemological turn in metaphysics during this period? Can we talk about ‘scientific metaphysics’ in the 18th century? Does metaphysics still have an object after the ‘Scientific Revolution’? Is there a specific method for metaphysics ? How does it relate to mathematics and experience ? Can metaphysical truths be certain ? Does natural philosophy need first principles?
Presentation time will be 30 minutes + 15 minutes for discussion.
Languages: English and French.
Please send an abstract (of no more than 500 words) in doc(x)word as attachment to:
Abstracts should be prepared for double-blind review by removing any identification details. The author’s name, institutional position and affiliation, and the paper title, as well as contact information, should be included in the body of the e-mail.
Notification of acceptance by August 18, 2017.
Registration fee: 20 euros. The conference does not provide funding for speakers’ travel or accommodation.
Please contact one of the organisers for further questions: Tinca Prunea-Bretonnet (; Grigore Vida (