Wednesday, March 20, 2013

UNO CenterAustria Hosts International Conference

The University of New Orleans CenterAustria created an all-day conference on The Life and Work of Guenther Anders: Émigré, Iconoclast, Philosopher, Literateur.

The CenterAustria symposium on the philosopher and critic of the nuclear age Guenther Anders held at a downtown hotel last week brought visitors from five countries, said UNO Marshall Plan Professor of History Guenther Bischof. The annual conference took place Thursday and Friday, March 14-15 and included receptions at local eateries and the National World War II Museum. Bischof coordinated the series with Johann Holzner of the University of Austria at Innsbruck and Bernhard Fetz of the Austrian Literature Archives. UNO President Peter J. Fos helped to welcome international guests, Bischof said.

Anders was a Jewish philosopher and journalist focused on the philosophical evolution of the technology age, addressing themes from the effects of mass media on emotions and ethos to the Holocaust and what it means to be a philosopher.

At the conference, UNO Professor of Philosophy Frank Schalow, a scholar of 19th and 20th century German thought, phenomenology and continental philosophy, gave an opening lecture exploring Anders' role as a consummate philosopher. Berthold Molden, a UNO history professor explored Anders' role as a transnational intellectual in the 1960s.

This has been a busy spring for CenterAustria, a research and discourse hub for Austrian and European Studies at UNO and in New Orleans. Earlier in the month, CenterAustria hosted its annual Marshall Plan Lecture, where this year history professor Berthold Molden gave the lecture, "Can Anti-Communism Be Neutral? Austrian Media in the Cold War?" Together with the UNO Department of Film and Theatre, CenterAustria hosted a Central European film series, which brought three Central European films to the Robert E. Nims Theatre.

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Learn about CenterAustria's ongoing spring lecture series >>