University of Calgary

Faculties host leading hermeneutic philosopher John Caputo

UToday HomeMay 3, 2013

Visiting with John Caputo (centre), professor emeritus at Syracuse and Villanova universities, are (from left) Graham McCaffrey, nursing; Nancy Moules, nursing; Jim Fields, education; and Shelagh McConnell, nursing.Visiting with John Caputo (centre), professor emeritus at Syracuse and Villanova universities, are (from left) Graham McCaffrey, nursing; Nancy Moules, nursing; Jim Fields, education; and Shelagh McConnell, nursing. Photo by Shane MorissySixty academics, graduate students and guests gathered this week for a two-day seminar, sponsored by the faculties of nursing and education, with John Caputo, the American philosopher internationally lauded for his work in continental philosophy and hermeneutics.

Caputo specializes in the area of postmodern theory with a particular interest in contemporary phenomenology, hermeneutics and deconstruction, having forged a notion of what he calls “radical hermeneutics” which focuses on the idea of the “event.”

“These two days have been inspiring in terms of learning from, and with, a leading hermeneutic philosopher,” says Faculty of Nursing professor Nancy Moules, organizer of the seminar and editor of the University of Calgary-based Journal of Applied Hermeneutics and co-founder of the Canadian Hermeneutic Institute. “Dr. Caputo graciously and broad-mindedly engaged with scholars from practice professions like nursing, education, social work and psychology.”

Associate professor Jim Field sits on the editorial board of the journal and is a follower of Caputo’s. “These two days have been a remarkable experience in the presence of an eloquent scholar brimming with wisdom and kindness," he says.

Caputo is also inspired by his two days at the university. “It is wonderful to work with people who have a very strong philosophical understanding of hermeneutics and know how to translate philosophy into practice in professions,” he says.

Caputo is the Thomas J. Watson Professor Emeritus of Religion at Syracuse University, where he taught from 2004-2011, and the David R. Cook Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Villanova, where he taught the previous 36 years.

 

Follow UToday on Twitter.
Check the UToday website for news about events, people and trends at University of Calgary.
Follow what’s happening on campus using our interactive calendar.