World Congress 2016 – Philosophy of Aristotle
Author: Olivera Z. Mijuskovic, philosopher, CEO, Founding Director and Editor-in-Chief "Philosophical Views", President "World Philosophy Network", Project Leader of Hellenic Center (HEC) Project "Philosophers of the Ancient Greek World", member "International Association of Greek Philosophy - University of Athens
Under the auspices of H.E. President of the Hellenic Republic Mr. Prokopios Pavlopoulos and of H.E. the President of the Republic of Cyprus Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, the World Philosophical congress on Aristotle, on the ocation of the 2.400 years from his birth was held from 9 to 15 July, at the Philosophical faculty of Athens. Congress organizers were The International Association of Greek Philosophy, the Greek Philosophical Society, the Philosophical Society of Cyprus and other Scientific Societies, Associations and Educational Institutions. At the Organizing Committee were: The President of the Hellenic Parliament Mr. Nikolaos Voutsis, The Minister of Education, Research and Religious Affairs Mr. Nikos Filis, The Head of the Region of Attica Ms. Rena Dourou, The Rector of the University of Athens Professor A.M. Dimopoulos, The Rector of the National Technical University of Athens Professor Ioannis Golias, The Mayor of the Municipality of Aristotle Mr. Georgios Zoubas.
It was expected the participation of the most famous philosophers of the world, of which some had their lectures the next few congress days. They discussed the theme of the entire oeuvre of Aristotle's philosophy.
According to Mrs Mpabaliouta Eleni-Vasiliki, press manager of "International Association of Greek Philosophy" the number of participants overcame the 550 scolars and researchers on philosophy of Aristotle. What was very characteristic for the present Congress was the large participation from China, Russia and Iran, a long the participation of Western scholars, mostly from Europe and USA.
In addition to the philosophical expected special sessions and culture events such as the Official Openinig Ceremony which took place at the Odeum of Herodes Atticus at the first day of the congress. One interesting thing was that, on Wednesday, July 13, 2016 at 19:00 took place a particularly symbolic session at AULA, the theater of philosophy of Athens, the theatrical performance for the life of the philosopher Aristotle. Author and performer: Theodosis Pelegrinis, Deputy Minister of Education and former Rector of the University of Athens. As part of the celebrations throughout the world for the «Aristotle Anniversary Year» and the World Congress “The Philosophy of Aristotle”, which took place in Athens, Theodossis Pelegrinis’s play «Aristotle» was performed, under the direction of Nikos Paroikos. The play was staged with the support of the Cultural Organization of the Municipality of Athens (PODAN/ΠΟΔΑΝ).
The play was performed on July 13 in the School of Philosophy of the University of Athens (AULA Amphitheater), for all Congress participants, as well as the public. The play will also be performed during a walk on July 22 and 23 in Athens; on both days, the walk will start at 7.30 p.m. at the entrance of the pedestrian way at Loumbardiaris Church (Philopappos Hill).
Finally, the play will be performed during the closing ceremony of the celebrations for the «Aristotle Anniversary Year» at UNESCO premisses in Paris on November 18, 2016.
The play concerns the philosophy of Aristotle. A troupe is rehearsing a play. During the rehearsal and at a moment of tension, a discussion starts between the director and his actors, on the role of the author and his play; this discussion is quickly extended to a very interesting and intense discussion on the basic issues of the Aristotelian philosophy. In this way, through the questions posed by the actors (a man and a woman), who ignore this philosophy or have wrong views about Aristotle, concepts such as catharsis, virtue, eudaimonia, morality, and many more, are touched upon and presented in a clear and comprehensible way and with the use of examples. The director teaches and guides the dialogical discussion with such a distinctive skill and power of persuasion that, at the end, the two actors realize their errors and get so troubled that they do not wish the rehearsal for the play they are preparing to be continued. Then the director proposes to them to go on a walk and to continue their discussion on Aristotle; the actors accept this proposal enthusiastically and this is how the play «Aristotle» comes to its completion.
The play’s cast is: Theodossis Pelegrinis (director), Spyros Xenos (1st actor), Ilektra Paroikou (2nd actor).
This was the part of the rich cultural program:
Sunday 10/7, 20:00
Visit of the Congress participants at the Megaron Plus Art Exhibitions
Address: Vass.Sophias & Kokkali, Athens 115 21
1. “In Defense to Aristotle”
2. “Ancient Suppliant – Contemporary Refugee
Musical - Theatrical perfomance “Angel of Wisdom”
Monday 11/7 19:00-21:00
Special Session The Pnyx
Speaker George Katrougalos(Greece), Minister of Labour and Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Athens
Aristotle and Europe today
Constantine Sandis (UK)
Aristotelian Virtue Theory and Particularism in the Global Era
Wednesday 13/7, 19: 00-21: 00
Theatrical Performance, Aula of the philosophical Faculty
Play entitled “Aristotle”
Author and performer:
Theodosis Pelegrinis , Deputy Minister of Education and former Rector of the University of Athens
Thursday 14/7, 18: 00-20: 00
Special Session Aristotle’s Lyceum
Adresses by the presidents of the Organizing Societies
Gerhard Seel (Switzerland)
Why Democracy? Aristotle’s answer in contrast to modern
Friday 15/7, 18:00
Official Closing Ceremony of The World Congress in Philosophy The Philosophy of Aristotle
The official Closing Ceremony took place in the main Aula and the main yard of the School of Philosophy, Univerisity of Athens, on 15th of July, 2016.
Dance companies “Kleigenis of the Cultural Centre of Ierissos” and “Mikto Chalkidikis – Folklore Centre of Polygyros”, under the direction of Ms. Ephi Keliaphanou will organize a party-celebration of Stagira and Chalkidiki. The companies performed, for the Congress participants, Invited speakers, Congress Guests, Congress Attendees, a representative sample of dance and music tradition of their area.
The music orchestra “Ιχνηλάτες της παράδοσης” (The Trackers of Tradition) followed with their music performance.
The reception organized and hosted by the Mayor of the Municipality of Aristotle Mr. George Zoubas for all Congress participants, Invited speakers, Congress Guests, Congress Attendees, will offer buffet meals from the Mount Athos, cooked by the famous monk Iosaf.
The Mayor addressed the participants, providing them in his speech a unique picture of Chalkidiki as Aristotle’s homeland and land of Mount Athos.
This year was declared as the year of Aristotle by UNESCO. The main initiative was submitted by a number of professors from universities in Greece, and also this initiative is supported by the president of the European Parliament Martin Schultz and by the state institutions of the Hellenic Republic.
The first in a series of marking the anniversary of the birth of the famous philosopher took place in Thessaloniki under the name "World Congress Aristotle 2400 Years" at the initiative of the "Interdisciplinary Centre for Aristotle Studies" of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, as well as in his native place Ancient Staegira (Στάγειρα) in Halkidiki. The Congress was held from 23 to 28 May.
Invited speakers were the most important researchers in the field of Aristotle's philosophy in the world, and one of them is supposed to be recently deceased Hilary Whitehall Putnam. Congress was full of great presentations and lectures on the theme of almost all aspects of Aristotle's philosophy beginning of political philosophy until bioethical learning of him. The cultural part of the Congress was marked with exclusive news about the discovery of Aristotle's grave on the Halkidiki peninsula. Aristotle was born in Stagira in 384 BC and died in Chalcis, Evia, at 322 BC. Greetings at the opening of the Congress was given by officials of the European and Hellenic Republic institutions.
Photos: International Association of Greek Philosophy
Special thanks to Mrs Mpabaliouta Eleni-Vasiliki, press manager of "International Association of Greek Philosophy"
Author of the text was press accredited journalist on both world events.