Society for Phenomenology and Media

History

The Society for Phenomenology and Media (SPM) was formed in 1998 and held its first conference in San Diego, February, 1999. The idea for the creation of the Society came from Paul Majkut. Though not a strict phenomenologist, he was friendly to the approach after studying Husserl under V. J. McGill. McGill, along with Dorion Cairns and Marvin Farber, studied with Husserl in the 1920s. McGill, a former President of the American Philosophical Association, did not consider himself a phenomenologist. Majkut 's interests were confined to transcendental phenomenology and the naturalist and dialectical materialism of his teacher.

Although Majkut believed that Husserl's work would remain the central theoretical lens of the society, this was not to be the case. The first SPM conference was decidedly catholic, with papers inspired not only by Husserl, but Merleau-Ponty, Ingarden, Heidegger, and others. Philosophical diversity was encouraged and came from a wide variety of perspectives: analytic and linguistic analysis, feminist, Marxism, pragmatism, post-colonial theory, semiotic, and other contemporary approaches, as well as the range of phenomenological opinion. Only questions of media theory and practice remained constant.

The society has two publications: Glimpse, at first a publication of conference proceedings, but since 2009 a peer-reviewed journal, and Outis, a conference proceedings of the SPM Project on Deception.

At its inception, the society was helped by Professor Lester Embree and the Center for Advanced Research in Phenomenology (CARP).

SPM has a democratic organizational structure that encourages open-mindedness and toleration of divergent philosophical approaches.

In its early years, SPM formed a close relationship with the Circulo Latinoamericano Fenomenologia (CLAFEN), especially in the persons of Prof. Rosemary Rizo-Patron of the Pontical University of Peru and Antonio Zirion of Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, and continued with the invitation of Julia Iribarne of National Academy of Sciences, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

In 2003, SPM became a founding member of the Organization of Phenomenological Organizations (OPO) at its first conference in Prague, the Czech Republic, and was represented by Prof. Majkut, who also represented SPM at the second meeting in Lima, Peru.

At its inception, the directors of the society decided that a number of papers accepted for presentation at its conferences would be reserved for those working towards a doctorate. It was also decided that as an international organization annual conferences would be held in rotation in the European Union, North America (Canada and the United States), and Latin America. SPM is particularly interested in bringing the work of Latin American phenomenologists to the attention of North American and European thinkers.

Past Conferences

2019 Twenty-first International Conference. Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Puebla, Mexico. Host: Marleni Reyes. Keynoter: Rosemary Rizo Patron de Lerner, "Evidence and Truth in the Digital Age: A Husserlian Perspective."

 

2018 Twentieth International Conference. University of Akureyri (Háskólinn á Akureyri)

Host: Lars Lundsten. Keynoter: Nyasha Mboti, "Apartheid Studies."

 

2017 Nineteenth International Conference. Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Host: Yoni van den Eede. Keynoters: Langdon Winner "Media Politicized"; Michel Puech, "Media Epistemology."

 

2016. Eighteenth International Conference Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Mexico Co-Hosts: Alberto Canan Carrillo, May Zindel. Seminar Conference: "Finding Common Media Ground."

 

2015 Seventeenth International Conference National University, San Diego, California Host: Melinda Campbell. Keynoters: Kelly Gates, "Digital Surveillance"; Carl Boggs, "Corporate Media."

 

2014 Sixteenth International Conference University of Freiburg, Germany Host: Miguel A. García. Keynoter: Andreas Ströhl, "Flusser and Media."

 

2013. Fifteenth International Conference Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Puebla, Mexico Co-Hosts: Alberto Canan Carrillo, May Zindel . Keynoter: Allan Casebier, "Phenomenology and Film."

 

2012 Fourteenth International Conference National University, San Diego, California Host: Paul Majkut. Keynoter: Marc van der Bossche, "The (Im-)possibility of Virtual Bodies."

 

2011 Thirteenth International Conference University of Freiburg, Germany. Host: Miguel A. García. Keynoter: Friedrich Uehlein, "Lord Shaftesbury and Edmund Husserl."

 

2010 Twelfth International Conference Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Puebla, Mexico Co-Hosts: Alberto Canan Carrillo, May Zindel. Seminar Conference": "Philosophical Implications of Media Studies."

 

2009 Eleventh International Conference Arlington, Virginia Host: Dennis Skocz. Seminar Conference: "The Role of Phenomenology in Media Studies"

 

2008 Tenth International Conference Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Puebla, Mexico Host: Alberto Canan Carrillo. Seminar Conference: "McLuhan and Beyond."

 

2007 Ninth International Conference National University, San Diego, California Host: Paul Majkut. Seminar Conference: "New and Old Concepts on New and Old Media."

 

2006 Eighth International Conference National University, San Diego, California Host: Paul Majkut. Keynote: Julia Iribarne, National Academy of Sciences, Buenos Aires, Argentina: "We are Subhuman: Responsibility and Media through Sartre’s Nausea."

 

2005 Seventh International Conference Oregon Western University, Monmouth, Oregon. Host: Randall Dana Ulveland. Seminar Conference: "Media and Mediation."

 

2004 Sixth International Conference Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah Host: Kay Egan. Keynote: John Durham Peters, University of Iowa: "The Voice and Modern Media."

 

2003 Fifth International Conference Arcata Polytechnical Institute, Helsinki, Finland Host: Lars Lundsten. Keynote: Barry Smith, University of Buffalo: "Medicine and Phenomenology."

 

2002 Fourth International Conference Universdidad Autonoma de Puebla, Puebla, Mexico Host: Alberto Canan Carrillo. Keynoter: Maricio Beauchot, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico: "Verdad y Otredad en Emmanuel Levinas como Raices de la Communicacion"; Report: Antonio Zirion, Instituto de El Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico: "The Status of Phenomenology in Contemporary Latin America."

 

2001 Third International Conference National University, San Diego, California. Host: Paul Majkut. Keynoters: J. N. Mohanty: "Notes of Husserl"; Bina Gupta, University of Missouri-Columbia: "If Journalists were Vedantins."

 

2000 Second International Conference National University, San Diego, California

Host: Paul Majkut. Keynote: Vivian Sobchack, University of California, Los Angeles: “Nostalgia for a Digital Object: Regrets on the Quickening of QuickTime" Report: Lester Embree: "The Mother of all Phenomenological Websites: Development of the Center for Advanced Research in Phenomenology."

 

1999 First International Conference National University, San Diego, California, and Universidad Iberoamericana, Tijuana, Mexico. Host: Paul Majkut. Keynote: Anna-Teresa-Tymienieska, The World Phenomenology Institute: "Reality and Its Simile"