Sussex Philosophy Society Seminar: Dr. Minna-Kerttu Kekki (8 December)

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In-Person at the University of Sussex at Arts A 108 on the University of Sussex campus, Falmer, Brighton. All welcome.

Sussex Philosophy Society Seminar: Dr. Minna-Kerttu Kekki (8 December)

On Friday 8 December at 3:30-5 (London time), the University of Sussex Philosophy Society will host Dr. Minna-Kerttu Kekki (University of Oulu/University of Helsinki) for an in-person Research Seminar entitled “Edith Stein’s Political Phenomenology.” There is no Zoom component for this event in the Philosophy Society series. The talk will be held in Arts A 108 on the University of Sussex campus, Falmer, Brighton BN1 9RH. All are welcome to attend and share the event information.

Edith Stein’s Political Phenomenology

How to get from philosophy of emotions to political ontology and vice versa? In this talk, I will present Edith Stein’s phenomenological method for doing political philosophy, that is, political phenomenology. As I will demonstrate, this method combines philosophy of mind and political philosophy in a way that provides another alternative to traditional theories in political philosophy. I will argue that Stein’s political-phenomenological method and work are interesting both historically and philosophically: On the one hand, it provides a window into the political thinking in the inter-war period in Europe. On the other hand, it provides a philosophical method and examples of what to do with this method in political philosophy. While we might not want to use the method for the exactly the same topics as Stein did, her work presents analyses of social and political experiences that can be used in composing contemporary arguments.
Since Edmund Husserl introduced modern phenomenology, there has always been some interest in political topics among phenomenologists. However, especially after the classical French phenomenologists such as Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Simone de Beauvoir, political topics have turned relatively marginal within phenomenology. Recently, the interest towards political phenomenology has grown again, sometimes also called “critical phenomenology.” This field investigates experiences about politics, minority experiences, and political ontology based on phenomenological theories. Stein is still quite rarely mentioned within this field, and we can only speculate on the reasons for this, as her work could easily be considered classical political phenomenology.

Dr. Minna-Kerttu Kekki is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Oulu in Finland and a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Sussex. In January 2024, Dr. Kekki will be a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Helsinki. You can find out more about the speaker’s research here: