Workshop “Hope and Trust”

We will organize a workshop on “Hope and Trust”, 14-15 January 2016 in Frankfurt/Main, Goethe University, Campus Westend, Eisenhower-room . Attendance is free, but please register: Julia Gründel,

Hope and trust are attitudes that are not only central to our lives, but also rise difficult philosophical questions: What is their relation to the emotions, to rational agency and to knowledge? When is it rational to hope or trust? Why can it be valuable to do so? Are the two phenomena intertwined?
In this conference, we want to pursue those and related themes in order to investigate structural similarities and differences of hope and trust. Both hope and trust might seem to stand in a tension with requirements of rationality. Theoretical rationality demands that we guide our attitudes in accordance with what the evidence supports. However, we hope in the light of uncertainty. Similarly, is seems not only rational to trust where one has sufficient evidence of trustworthiness, trust rather often requires us to go beyond such evidence. The rationality of both hope and trust, therefore, cannot be understood by reference to theoretical reason alone. We have to explore what kind of practical reasons guide us in hoping or trusting. Furthermore, a so far largely unexplored question is whether trust involves hope or vice versa. When we trust people, do we hope they will be trustworthy, or do we entertain a normative expectation based on sufficient evidence? In this workshop, these issues will be discussed by international scholars working on either (or both) of the two phenomena, in order to compare insights from the philosophy of hope and trust.

Confirmed speakers: Claudia Blöser (Frankfurt), Boudewijn de Bruin (Groningen), Paul Faulkner (Sheffield), Martin Hartmann (Luzern), Adrienne Martin (Claremont), Berislav Marušić (Waltham/Boston), Thomas Simpson (Oxford), Christopher Thompson (Cambridge).

Kickoff-event in Frankfurt

On Wednesday, 8th July 2015, we’ll present and discuss the outlines of our project in the Goethe University Frankfurt. Everybody who is interested is invited to join!

One central question of our project concerns the rationality of hope. We pursue the thesis that there is a kind of hope, “fundamental hope”, which plays a constitutive role for the practical identity of the agent. A person therefore has reason to keep up hope, because this hope is valuable for his or her practical identity. We would like to spell out this idea for individual persons, but also for groups and collectives.

A further question concerns the role of hope for intersubjective relationships. In order to determine this role, we investigate structural similarities and differences of hope and trust.

We are looking forward to discussing the beginnings of our project with colleagues and consider their criticism, questions and suggestions in the further course of our work.

Time: 8th July 2015, 15:30-17:30.

Place: Goethe University, SH (Seminarhaus) 1.102

Norbert Wollheim Platz 1
60629 Frankfurt am Main

For further questions please contact