Symposium | Relations and/et Institutions

The Political Implications of Merleau-Ponty’s Work

May 8-10th, 2019 · University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada


Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s multi-faceted body of work has allowed philosophers to explore the human experience of relations as well as the institutions, both formal and informal, that bind them together. By taking on his ideas in new directions and drawing on his concepts and reimagining of political philosophy broadly construed, they have explored notions such as coexistence, freedom, nature, ecology, intercultural relations, colonialism, emotions, and gender. This symposium will gather researchers from North America with expertise in the philosophy of Merleau-Ponty and a research program on contemporary political and social problems, as well as graduate students from their institutions and universities in the Prairies. To focus on exchange and discussion on each other’s work, papers will be exchanged ahead of time and workshopped. They will then be edited for publication in a cohesive multi-authored book.

This symposium will be the third in a series of three events around the political philosophy of Merleau-Ponty. The first two took place in Paris, at the Husserl Archives of the École Normale Supérieure. The first offered readings of political texts by Merleau-Ponty which often neglected and of his unpublished manuscripts, or readings that brought new light to his political ideas, while the second focused on the inspiration other political philosophers have drawn from Merleau-Ponty.



Call for Graduate Student Papers


Graduate students and graduating students considering grad school are invited to submit papers for a workshop dealing with phenomenology and politics. Papers may be historical in nature, dealing with the work of one or more authors, or focused on a topic of contemporary relevance.

The workshop will take place on the afternoon of May 8, 2019 at the University of Regina. It will be followed by a two-day bilingual symposium, “Relations and Institutions. The Political Implications of Merleau-Ponty’s Work.” Students presenting at the workshop will be invited to take part in the symposium and meals organized around it.

Submitted papers should be approximately 8-10 pages long (for a 20 minute presentation). They will be reviewed by the conference organizers. While papers dealing with Merleau-Ponty in some manner are specifically invited, all papers will be evaluated based on their merit and not their topic. Indigenous students and members of other marginalized groups are encouraged to submit their work. Please send your papers and questions to


Deadline for submissions: March 28, 2019

Conference Organizers

Jérôme Melançon, University of Regina

Emmanuel de Saint Aubert, Archives Husserl de Paris, CNRS / École Normale Supérieure


This event is funded by:

University of Regina: Humanities Research Institute; University Conference Fund; Department of Philosophy and Classics; La Cité universitaire francophone

CNRS-ENS : UMR 8547, Archives Husserl de Paris


For information, please contact: Jérôme Melançon,