CFP: Early Modern Laws of Nature

Workshop “Early Modern Laws of Nature: Secular and Divine”
Call for Abstract: deadline 30 April 2016

Ian Ramsey Centre Conference, University of Oxford - Faculty of Philosophy, University of Groningen
7 July 2016
Ian Ramsey Centre, Oxford

This one-day workshop will examine the theological debates that influenced the birth and development of the notion of laws of nature from the sixteenth century until the critical Kant. The laws of nature moved from being essentially tied to the nature of God, to becoming a secular concept by the midst of the eighteenth century. The goal of this event will be to uncover the philosophical and theological concepts at stake both at the birth and later development of the laws of nature, seeking a greater understanding of the transition from being a theological notion to becoming a non-theological notion.

The workshop will host Prof Eric Watkins (University of San Diego) and Prof Sophie Roux (École Normale Supérieure, Paris) as keynote speakers, and offers up-to five slots for shorter presentations. Please send your paper proposal (of not more than 500 words) to Papers should range from issues surrounding the theological underpinnings of the laws of nature in the philosophies of nature of sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Cartesian and Scholastic understandings of the laws of nature, and to secular discourses on the laws of nature by the mid-eighteenth century.
Closing date for abstract submissions: 30 April 2016.

Further information available at the Ian Ramsey Centre website (
For questions on paper submissions, please contact

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