Marija Selak, University of Zagreb
Blackfriars Hall, Oxford, Main Aula
This lecture will present research undertaken during my time as a visiting scholar at the University of Oxford in 2018. In this lecture I point out the “unwanted fruit” of the de-substantialisation of evil. Incorporating evil within good itself has enabled its undisturbed dissemination, resulting in the blurring of the difference between good and evil, and thus the de-substantialisation of good. Hence, in the first part of the lecture I will analyse Manichaeistic cosmological dualism, with an emphasis on Augustine’s counter arguments and their philosophical foundations found in Parmenides, Plato, and Plotinus. Following this, in the second part of the lecture, I examine how the perception of evil as a lack of good may have led us astray. In this regard, I will discuss the decomposition of the modern subject as the bearer of moral responsibility, the infantilisation of society, and the establishment of new invisible authorities in its place. Finally, on these foundations, I will critically discuss evil in the present-day, with an emphasis on virtual reality, in which we have a return of the cosmic dualism of good and evil, and the displacement of man beyond morality.
MARIJA SELAK is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb. Besides her academic interests, she is very active in a public sphere; she writes articles for several journals and takes part in a weekly intellectual show on Croatian Public Television HRT. The image shown here is from the cover of her forthcoming book, Zlo i Naopako. Suvremene manifestacije zla i pokušaji njihovih opravdanja, published by Jesenski i Turk, Zagreb, 2019, 229 pages. (ISBN: 978-953-222-871-7). This title roughly translates as Evil and Disorder: Contemporary Manifestations of Evil and Attempts at their Justification.
This event is organised by the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion and the Humane Philosophy project. It is free and open to the public.
Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion
University of Oxford, Gibson Building
Radcliffe Observatory Quarter
Woodstock Road, Oxford OX2 6GG. Tel: +44 (0) 1865 270790