21st Century Evils 17th Global Conference: The Evil Project

Robert Fisher's picture
March 17, 2016 to March 19, 2016
Subject Fields: 
Anthropology, Contemporary History, Philosophy, Sociology, Social Sciences

21st Century Evils
17th Global Conference: The Evil Project


Call for Participation 2016


Thursday 17th March – Saturday 19th March 2016
Budapest, Hungary


It has been said that those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it. Yet, evil remains a constant fixture of the human condition, in spite of all of the monuments, memorials, speeches and books designed to keep the ills of the past ever in our thoughts. Knowledge of the Holocaust and Rwandan genocide has not saved the global community from enduring new humanitarian catastrophes, such as those in Syria and Darfur. Geopolitical power struggles resulting in poverty, violence and devastation for affected communities continue to leave a legacy of suffering in many parts of the world. Despite understanding the impact of the Great Depression on the global community, the world’s industrial powers embraced an agenda of deregulation, which precipitated a global financial crisis that devastated individuals, families, businesses, communities and states. The scrutiny aimed at understanding the reasons behind crimes perpetrated by the likes of Ted Kaczynski, Ted Bundy, Mira Hindley and others has not enabled us to prevent horrific acts of violence in our communities. Indeed, the wickedness of men and women continues to leave an enduring mark on life in the 21st century despite our collective awareness of historical evils.

Thus, rather than consider evil in a general or historical context, the 21st Century Evils conference adopts a more concrete, forward-looking perspective to explore questions such as: What does evil look like in the 21st century? How is it different from evil in previous centuries? What are the causes of evil in 21st century? How do globalisation and interconnectedness shape the way evil is perpetrated and experienced? What is the future of evil and our capacity to manage, contain and overcome it? As questions about the nature of evil are often taken up in philosophical, theological, political, sociological, historical and anthropological discussions, this is a fundamentally inter-disciplinary concept. However, the 21st Century Evils conference aims to push those inter-disciplinary boundaries even further by creating a platform for professionals across the disciplinary spectrum to identify the multi-faceted nature of modern evil, assess its causes and effects and, perhaps most importantly, identify the ways in which communities can respond more effectively to evil and human wickedness now and in the future.

In wrestling with evil(s) we are confronted with a multi-layered phenomenon, which invites people from all disciplines, professions and vocations to come together in dialogue and wrestle with questions that cross the boundaries of the intellectual, the emotional and the personal. Underlying these efforts there is the sense that in grappling with evil we are in fact grappling with questions and issues of our own humanity. The conference organisers therefore welcome participants whose personal or professional experiences equip them to contribute to the dialogue, including clergy/spiritual advisors, legal experts, NGO representatives and charity workers, lawmakers, civil servants, social workers, business people, medical professionals (clinicians, therapists, etc.), scientists, engineers, tech professionals, educators, academic researchers, artists, journalists, writers, tradespeople, activists and others with an interest in the topic.

Proposals are invited for for presentations, panels, workshops, readings, performances, screenings and art installations on any aspect of 21st Century Evils, including but not limited to:


Identifying 21st Century Evils

    Sources and catalysts for current evils
    Comparative assessments of how current evils differ from or revisit previous forms of evil (e.g. individual responsibility, corporate responsibility, following orders, insanity, etc.)
    Whose Evil?: Considering the status and responses to actions considered justified by some groups and evil by others
    Evil by name or evil by nature: Considering the use and implications of the rhetoric of evil in relation to social, political and cultural issues
    The uses, benefits and disadvantages of using the ‘evil’ label


Aspects of Evil in:

    Law and order (including immigration, asylum, human rights)
    Geopolitical issues, including war
    Politics and public policy
    Cultural and social customs, practices, traditions
    Domestic and international terrorist movements
    Business and corporate environments
    Religion and religious movements
    Health, medicine and mental health
    Technology and big data
    Labour and human resources
    Animals and non-human entities
    Families and other human relationships


Showing Evils
How are 21st century evils portrayed in fictional and non-fictional contexts and why do those types of representation impact our understanding of evil? Issues to be explored include evil in:

    film, television and theatre
    news media
    social media
    art and sculpture


Protesting, Confronting and Preventing Evil

How do we deal with evil? How do we respond to its occurrence? What are best ways of confronting and preventing evil? Issues to be explored here include:

    the role of education and research
    activist and NGO-driven responses
    corporate and philanthropic responses
    responses by local, national and international governments
    ethical choices and lifestyles/personal development responses
    professional protocols/best practice

Further details and information can be found on the project web site:

Call for Cross-Over Presentations
The Perspectives on Evil project will be meeting at the same time as a project on Responsibility and another project on Experiencing Prison. We welcome submissions which cross the divide between both project areas. If you would like to be considered for a cross project session, please mark your submission “Crossover Submission”. 

What to Send
300 word abstracts, proposals and other forms of contribution should be submitted by Friday 9th October 2015.
All submissions be minimally double reviewed, under anonymous (blind) conditions, by a global panel drawn from members of the Project Team and the Advisory Board. In practice our procedures usually entail that by the time a proposal is accepted, it will have been triple and quadruple reviewed.


You will be notified of the panel’s decision by Monday 19th October 2015.
If your submission is accepted for the conference, a full draft of your contribution should be submitted by Friday 5th February 2016.

Abstracts may be in Word, RTF or Notepad formats with the following information and in this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) body of proposal, f) up to 10 keywords.
E-mails should be entitled: 21st Century Evils Abstract Submission

Where to Send
Abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to both Organising Chairs:

Organising Chairs:
Natalia Kaloh Vid: nkv@inter-disciplinary.net
Rob Fisher: evil17@inter-disciplinary.net

This event is an inclusive interdisciplinary research and publishing project. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting.

All papers accepted for and presented at the conference must be in English and will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook.  Selected papers may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s). All publications from the conference will require editors, to be chosen from interested delegates from the conference.

To date, 44 eBooks and 28 paperback books have emerged from the work of the project.

Inter-Disciplinary.Net believes it is a mark of personal courtesy and professional respect to your colleagues that all delegates should attend for the full duration of the meeting. If you are unable to make this commitment, please do not submit an abstract for presentation. Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.


Contact Info: 

Dr. Rob Fisher

Priory House

149B Wroslyn Road

Freeland, Oxfordshire OX29 8HR

United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1993 882087

Fax: +44 (0)870 4601132