There will be some deep thinking coming to Niagara this week.From Thursday through Saturday, a prestigious international conference taking place at Brock University’s Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts will draw up to 60 of the world’s leading philosophers to downtown St. Catharines.The 41st edition of the annual Merleau-Ponty Circle, considered one of the most significant gatherings in Continental European thought, is being hosted by Brock’s Department of Philosophy. The conference director is associate professor Rajiv Kaushik, whose research on conference namesake Maurice Merleau-Ponty includes the 2011 book Art and Institution: Aesthetics in the Late Works of Merleau-Ponty and the 2013 book Art, Language and Figure in Merleau-Ponty: Excursions in Hyper-Dialectic.Brock had presented a proposal to host the annual conference when the 2014 event was held in Geneva. This week, scholars from as far away as China and Australia will be in Niagara for the 2016 Merleau-Ponty Circle.The conference theme this year is “Merleau-Ponty: Doing Philosophy from the Outside,” and seeks to open up the meaning of philosophy to other disciplines. The theme is a play on a series of 1948 radio lectures given by Merleau-Ponty titled “Man Seen from the Outside.” Merleau-Ponty was deeply engaged with a variety of fields apart from philosophy, and the conference aims to continue this approach to philosophy by encouraging connections between philosophy and other academic disciplines.The conference is scheduled in a way that allows all participants to attend all presentations. This, says Kaushik, gives scholars “the rare opportunity to engage in a deep and sustained way with the research of other presenters, who are generally internationally well-regarded scholars.”This year’s keynote speakers include:Rudolf Bernet, from the University of Leuven, Belgium, who has published hundreds of articles in psychoanalysis and phenomenology, and authored a number of widely-acclaimed books.Veronique Foti, a Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at Penn State University. She is a leading researcher in Merleau-Ponty scholarship and works in the areas of European, Continental and Ancient philosophies, as well as philosophy of art and literary theory.Edward S. Casey, from Stony Brook University in New York, was the president of the American Philosophical Association (Easter Division) 2009-2010 and works in the areas of phenomenology, aesthetics, philosophy of space and time, ethic, perception and psychoanalytic theory. His research investigates place and space, including landscape paintings and maps.The entire conference takes place at the Marilyn I. Walker School for Fine and Performing Arts and First Ontario Performing Arts Centre.More information can be found on the conference website.The public is welcome to view the conference art work in the MIWSFPA Visual Art Gallery during regular gallery hours.
TORONTO — Kyle Lowry refuses to entertain suggestions that playing two-time defending champions Golden State means more than any other game.The Toronto Raptors’ all-star guard, who can sound grumpy on a good day, was particularly ornery when asked about the game after Thursday morning’s shootaround.“Just another regular-season game. Next question,” Lowry said, his black hoodie pulled up over his head.“Why?” a reporter asked, thus prompting a playful exchange.“What is it though? What are we in right now?” Lowry asked.“Regular season.”“There you go,” said Lowry.Playing the best in the league doesn’t happen every day though, the reporter replied.“What are we at, where are we at?” Lowry asked.“Game 23”“Of what?”“Of 82.”“Of what?”“The regular season.”“There you go. Good answer. Next question,” Lowry said.Lowry spoke prior to Thursday night’s much-anticipated tipoff against the Warriors at Scotiabank Arena. The Raptors (18-4) boast the best record in the league and will put their six-game win streak on the line against Golden State. The Warriors (15-7) have won three straight, despite missing sharpshooter Steph Curry.Raptors coach Nick Nurse planned to approach the game much the same as Lowry.“One of the things that I kind of reflect on today is the games just keep on coming so fast. Like, I can’t believe we’re on Game 23, right?” Nurse said. “You don’t really get to enjoy much, and you don’t have time to feel sorry for yourself because it’s just one after another. We’re going to play tonight, we’re going to get on a plane and go to Cleveland tomorrow, it just keeps on coming.“You’ve just got to kind of treat ’em like they’re a win over anyone equals one win over everyone else. That’s really all that matters this time of year.”Lori Ewing, The Canadian Press