At a moment when many suggest that the end of an era has been reached, and when struggles against climate change, exploitation, neocolonialism, patriarchy, and racism proliferate, what role can Arendts account of political beginnings play in the conceptualization of a new time? Arendt has been celebrated as a key theorist of politics, freedom, and judgement. Yet she has also been questioned when it comes to her understanding of the social question, the public-private divide, or the persistence of structures of systemic injustice. Is her work then still timely for understanding how to begin anew?

This conference will test the wide influence and perseverance, the attraction but also the criticism, of Arendts thought by recentering her approach to political beginnings. Arendts attempts to understand political beginnings animate her work. From her doctoral dissertation on Augustine to her posthumous book, The Life of the Mind, beginnings are omnipresent in her oeuvre. Conceiving Arendts attempts as an open legacy, digging up the plurality and worldliness, the tragic and agonistic character of beginnings, the conference aims to investigate how and why political beginnings are set off ‘not by the strength of one architect but by the combined power of the many.

In English

14:00 Welcome and Introduction by Facundo Vega

14:00 Panel I

Samuel Moyn:
Hannah Arendt among the Cold War Liberals

Rahel Jaeggi:
Arendt on Revolution

Eva Geulen:
Revolution between Beginning and Founding

moderated by Robin Celikates

15:45 Coffee break

16:00 Panel II

Fina Birulés:
The World at Stake. Hannah Arendt

Thomas Meyer:
A New Beginning? Experiences with Hannah Arendt

Anne Eusterschulte:
The Politics of ‘Willing’: Hannah Arendt’s Critique of Fatalism

moderated by Ross Shields

16:30 Panel III

Thomas Khurana:
The First Right. Arendt on the Naturalization and Politicization of Subjective Rights

Diego Rossello:
From Animal Labor to Animal Citizenship in Arendt and Critical Animal Studies

moderated by Anne Eusterschulte

18:00 Coffee break

18:30 Panel IV

Bonnie Honig:
‘Constant Mutual Release?’ Toward an Arendtian Politics of Forgiveness

Rodolphe Gasché:
The Vulgate of Philosophy, and its Prospects

Adriana Cavarero:
Hannah Arendt: Interacting Pluralities and Political Emotions

moderated by Barbara Hahn


Fina Birulés
Adriana Cavarero
Anne Eusterschulte
Rodolphe Gasché
Eva Geulen
Bonnie Honig
Rahel Jaeggi
Thomas Khurana
Thomas Meyer
Samuel Moyn
Diego Rossello

Organized by

Facundo Vega

An ICI event in cooperation with the Center for Post-Kantian Philosophy (University of Potsdam)

KV The Politics of Beginnings

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