28th International Conference of the Simone de Beauvoir Society: Beauvoir and Post-Truth
16–19 August 2023, University of Helsinki, Finland
Wednesday, 16 August 2023

Venue: Porthania (Yliopistonkatu 3), Room P674 

8.30–9.15 Registration opens 

9.15–9.30 Welcoming Words: Erika Ruonakoski (University of Helsinki), President of the International Simone de Beauvoir Society 

9.30–10.45 Keynote: Sara Heinämaa (University of Jyväskylä): “From Facts to Facticity: Principles of Beauvoir’s Theory of Action and Violence” 

Chair: Erika Ruonakoski (University of Helsinki) 

10.45–11.15 Break, refreshments available 

11.15–12.45 Session 1: Beauvoir and Postmodernism 

Chair: Joonas Martikainen (University of Helsinki) 

  • Anne van Leeuwen (James Madison University): “De-realized knowledge: Beauvoir and the Algerian War” 
  • Meryl Altman (DePauw University): “Beauvoir, Foucault, Language, Truth” 
  • Sergei Talanker (Western Galilee College): “The Existential Dualism of Post-Truth and Post-Value”  

12.45–13.45 Lunch break 

13.45–14.45 Session 2: True or False Selves? 

Chair: Minna-Kerttu Kekki (University of Oulu)

  • Ashley Scheu (Eckerd College): “21st-Century Conspiracy and the Desire for Unity in Simone de Beauvoir’s Thought” 
  • Alexander Antonopoulos (Concordia University): “‘True Selves?’ An Existentialist Perspective on Transition, Detransition, Re-transition, beyond the Politics of Truth in Medical and Activist Discourses” 

14.45–15.00 Break 

15.00–15.45 Introduction to the Book Exhibition 

Chair: Claudia Bouliane (University of Ottawa)

15.45–16.15 Break, refreshments available 

16.15–17.45 Session 3: Crises, Politics and Authenticity 

Chair: Jaakko Vuori (University of Helsinki)

  • Johanna Oksala (Loyola University Chicago): “A Critical Phenomenology of Right-Wing Thought” 
  • Joonas Martikainen (University of Helsinki): “Reciprocal Freedom as the Ground for Truth: Solidarity in the Time of a Pandemic”  
  • Maja Touzari Greenwood (Edinburgh University): “Entering an Age of Authenticity” 

18.00– University of Helsinki Reception (preregistration) 

Main Building, Christina Room, 2nd floor, Unioninkatu 34 

Welcoming Words by Kristian Klockars (Head of Discipline of Practical Philosophy, University of Helsinki)  

Thursday, 17 August 2023

Venue: Porthania (Yliopistonkatu 3), Room P674 

9.00–9.30 Registration 

9.30–10.30 Session 4: Education in a Post-Truth Era 

Chair: Joonas Martikainen (University of Helsinki)

  • Minna-Kerttu Kekki (University of Oulu): “Communications in (Social) Media – Place of Learning or Something Else” 
  • Anna E. Mudde (Campion College): “Living Colonial Post-Truth and Situated Subjectivity” 

10.30–11.00 Break, refreshments available  

11.00–12.15 Keynote: Kathleen Lennon (University of Hull): “Is There a ‘Truth’ about Gender?” 

Chair: Meryl Altman (DePauw University) 

12.15–13.45 Lunch break / General Meeting of the Society 

13.45–15.15 Session 5: Complicity and Oppression 

Chair: Irina Poleshchuk (University of Helsinki) 

  • Gül Yaşartürk (Antalya Akdeniz University): “Gender Politics in the Biographical Stories of Women Artists” 
  • Katja Čičigoj (University Klagenfurt): “On Knowing One’s Desires and Why It Does (Not) Matter – Authenticity and Existential Conditions of Pre-Pregnancy” 
  • Sara Cohen Shabot (University of Haifa): “Beauvoir on ‘Making Ourselves into Objects’: Oppression or Complicity with Submission? The Case of Obstetric Violence” 

15.15–15.45 Break, refreshments available 

15.45–17.15 Session 6: Eros and Embodiment 

Chair: Claudia Bouliane (University of Ottawa) 

  • Ellie Anderson (Pomona College) and Dana L. Rognlie (Wabash College): “Erotic Ambivalence in Beauvoir’s Student Diaries” 
  • Thomas Chesworth (University of Birmingham): “Bondage and Dominance – Mythologies of Sex in Beauvoir’s Hegel”  
  • Cécile Gagnon (University of Montreal): “Simone de Beauvoir on Feminine Sympathy: The Body as a Source of Knowledge” 

19:00– Dinner (preregistration) at Restaurant Sunn by the Senate Square, Aleksanterinkatu 26, 2nd floor 


Friday, 18 August 2023

Venue: Porthania (Yliopistonkatu 3), Room P673 

9.30–10.30 Session 7: Question of Fragility: Disabilities and Old Age 

Chair: Irina Poleshchuk (University of Helsinki) 

  • Timothy Allen (University of Cincinnati): “Rescuing Disability Ethics” 
  • Sonia Kruks (Oberlin College): “Old Age and the Question of Bad Faith” 

10.30–11.00 Break, refreshments available 

11.00–12.15 Keynote: Tove Pettersen (University of Oslo): “Old Age – Facts and Myths” 

Chair: Sonia Kruks (Oberlin College) 

12.15–13.45 Lunch break 

13.45–14.45 Session 8: Social Media and Bad Faith 

Chair: Marine Rouch (University of Toulouse Jean Jaurès) 

  • Gwendolyn Dolske (California State Polytechnic University): “Image vs. Self – A Beauvoirian Look at Online Life”  
  • Richa Shukla (Indian Institute of Technology Bhubaneswar): “Simone de Beauvoir and Online Dating: Possibility of an Existentialist Toolbox?” 

14.45–15.15 Break, refreshments available 

15.15–16.45 Session 9: Myths and Temporality 

Chair: Maria Svanström (University of Helsinki) 

  • Adam Kjellgren (Stockholm University): “Mythos, Logos and the Myth of Woman” 
  • JoAnne Myers (Marist College): “Myth of Femininity” 
  • Johanna Sjöstedt: “‘The Future Remains Largely Open’ – Augenblick and Revolution in Pyrrhus and Cinéas, The Ethics of Ambiguity and The Second Sex” 

16.45 Closing Words 

Saturday, 19 August 2023

9.30–12.00 Guided Tour to Suomenlinna Sea Fortress (preregistration).  

Meeting in front of Porthania at 9.30.