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Department of Classical Studies pres.

Soul Matters: Plato and Platonists on the Nature of the Soul

soul matters soul matters
soul matters
Platonist discourses about the soul are incredibly rich and multitiered. That complexity is rooted in Plato's own texts, offering as they do competing views on the nature of the soul. How did the soul (psyche) come to stand in for the interiority of the human person? How did the idea of an incorporeal self come to occupy an unbroken tradition of over one thousand years, pervading cultures around the Mediterranean basin, but rooted in ideas that can be directly traced back to Plato’s texts? Over that millennium, questions arose as to the existence of a world soul or even of an evil soul, the cosmic function of the soul, the way that the soul thinks, how soul governs or enlivens the body, the pre-existence of the soul, its fall into embodiment, etc. How did soul come to have so many disparate functions and configurations in the Platonic tradition?

In celebration of the upcoming 70th birthday of John Finamore, Roger Hornsby Professor of Classics at the University of Iowa, President of the International Society for Neoplatonic Studies, and Editor of the International of the Platonic Tradition.

SCHEDULE

Day One, Friday Dec. 6
Classics Library, 2175 Angell Hall
Conference Opening

First Session: Plotinus and Proclus
2:00 pm
Suzanne Stern-Gillet. University of Bolton and University of Manchester
“The double hamartia of the soul in Enn. IV 8 [6] 5.16-24

3:00 pm John Finamore, University of Iowa
"Proclus interprets Hesiod: The Procline Philosophy of the Soul.”

Coffee Break, adjourn to 3222 Tisch Hall

4:00 pm
Svetla Slaveva-Griffin, Florida State University
“Plato and Plotinus on Healing”

5:00 pm
Danielle Layne, Gonzaga University
“The Queer Soul in Plato and Proclus”

6:00 pm
Light Reception in Classical Studies Library

Day Two, Saturday Dec. 7th
All talks in 3222 Angell Hall.

First Sessions. Skype
Session II. Soul in Plato and Plotinus

9:00 am
Harold Tarrant University of New South Wales, Australia.
“Soul in the earliest multilevel interpretations of the Parmenides”
(skype session)

10:00 am
John Dillon, Trinity University
“Intellect Sober and Intellect Drunk: Some Reflections on the Plotinian Ascent Narrative”
(skype session)

11:00 am
Coffee Break

11:15 am
Van Tu, University of Michigan and Boudin College
"Is the Soul a Form? The Status of the soul in the last argument for immortality in the Phaedo"

12:00 pm
David Morphew, University of Michigan
"Is the rational soul divided?"

Session III
Polytheists and Christians

1:30-2:30
Greg Shaw, Stonehill College
“Neoplatonism: Pagan and Christian”

2:30-3:30
Iliaria Ramelli, University of Durham
"The Soul in Bardaisan, Origen, and Evagrius: Between Unfolding and Subsumption."

3:30-4:00 Break

4:00-5:00
Sarah Wear, Franciscan University Steubenville
“Platonist Terminology and Cyril’s Account of the Rational Soul of Jesus”

5:00-6:00
Crystal Addey, University of Cork and Jay Bregman, University of Maine
“Julian and Sallust on the Ascent of the Soul and Theurgy”

Day Three, Sunday, Dec. 8th
3222 Angell Hall

Coffee 9-9:30

Session IV: Soul and Mind

9:30-10:30
Robert Berchman, FSA Roma, Bard College
“Of Orioles, Owls and Aviaries
Revisiting the Problem of Other Minds in Aristotle and Plotinus”

10:30-11:30
Sara Ahbel-Rappe, University of Michigan
“The Backward Turning Eye. Reversion, Soul, and Intellect in Plotinus and the Chaldean Oracles”

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