Unity in Plurality July 24-29, 2006, University of Hanover First Circular

Leibniz’s historical position in philosophy and in the sciences as well as his importance for the present are the central themes of the congress. Since the previous congress six volumes of the Leibniz Academy Edition have been published; three further volumes will appear before the congress takes place. In addition numerous hitherto unpublished texts have been made available in advance on the internet by the editors. Furthermore, fundamentally new interpretations of known texts have been presented in recent years. Thus the possible need for a multi-faceted, multi-disciplinary and less exclusively deduction-orientated approach to Leibniz’s rationalism – as the project for the characteristica universalis appears to require – is being discussed at the present time. Besides, the hitherto usual identification of monad and individual concept has been questioned; the temporal development of Leibniz’s thought is apparently less clear than was believed just a while ago. All this provides a setting for bringing together in mutual confrontation previous investigations, establishing what has been achieved and allowing the identification of possible gaps in research.

The theme “Unity in Plurality” is to be a focal point of the congress. Leibniz’s fundamental considerations – as he states himself – revolve around unity and plurality, monads and bodies. Just as perception is the expression of plurality in unity, perfection and harmony are established as identity in variety (identitas in varietate). In the perspectivity of the monads, the exchange with other cultures (in particular Chinese) and the painstaking work on confessional reunion, Leibniz developed a conception of unity and plurality, whose relevance should be examined in the context of the current discussion of tolerance and its limits. If Leibniz was able to draw on a bundle of concepts of rationality – as recent research might suggest – the issue as to their unity becomes indispensable.

The Gottfried-Wilhelm-Leibniz-Society invites all interested researchers, experts in the field, and friends to participate. We request admissions of intended contributions by December 1, 2005. A file or reproducible paper submission (camera ready, maximum 8 pages) of those contributions which have been accepted is requested by March 1, 2006, the texts will then be distributed at the conference as a bound volume.

Detailed information on the congress procedures and precise directions for the presentation of contributions will be provided in further circulars; queries should be directed to the Gottfried-Wilhelm-Leibniz-Gesellschaft, Waterloostr. 8, D-30169 Hannover, e-mail [email protected], Telephone +49 511 1267 331 or 327, Telefax +49 511 1267 202.