European Academy of Religion: Panel "Determination of Life"

Dr. Valerie Fickert
Chair of the Panel “Determination of Life” at the
European Academy of Religion
Via San Vitale 114
40125 Bologna (IT)


Dear colleagues,

it is with great delight that I invite you to contribute to our panel “Determination of Life” at the European Academy of Religion in Bologna, June 22–25, 2020 under the high patronage of the European Parliament.

Referring directly to “Determination of Death” (i.e. “Controversies in the Determination of Death”. A White Paper of the President’s Council on Bioethics, Washington DC, December 2008), the reformulation “Determination of Life” hints at a basic issue which is fundamental for all the definitions we find in the classical universitarian disciplines – theology, law and medicine: The fact, that life actually cannot be termined in any way objectively or neutrally. Vivere viventibus est esse, says Aristotle (De anima, II, 4, 415 b 13). Conceptions of life including all definitions of its beginning and end such as the neurological determination of death in the United States in 1968 (“brain deathˮ) may be considered as normative constructions embedded in their respective cultural, historical and contemporary contexts (Bourdieu), i.e. as expressions of societies how they currently realize themselves as human beings living in a spatio-temporal continuum (Einstein).

It would be a great honour for us to listen to your arguments, respecting each other, creating spaces for an open, interdisciplinary dialogue considering exemplarily the definition of brain death – underlying moral, ethical and cultural dimensions. At the end we will have to talk about an adequate publication strategy.

You will find all relevant information under the following link:

Call for Papers is open till Friday, January 17th 2020

Please send your paper submissions directly to my eMail-address
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With warm regards
Dr. Valerie Fickert