Riyadh Philosophy Conference: Saudi Soft Power: First Ever Riyadh Philosophy Conference Launched

The Riyadh Philosophy Conference opened on Wednesday and prominent philosophers from around the world discussed topics that demonstrate the important role of philosophy in addressing the challenges facing humanity, under the theme “unpredictability”.

Opening the conference, Dr. Mohammed Hasan Alwan, CEO of the Literature, Publishing and Translation Commission of the Saudi Ministry of Culture, spoke of his “great honor” to host “brilliant speakers” from Saudi Arabia and around the world. Dr Alwan said the event was expected to become annual and mark the “beginning of Riyadh’s emergence as a major world center of philosophy”.

Addressing the first plenary session on Saudi Arabia’s intellectual landscape, Dr. Abdullah Al-Ghathami of King Saud University noted that questions such as “What connects us” are the ones we ask. “in our search for knowledge and an interpretation of the world in which we live”. in.” Abrahim H. Khan of the University of Toronto argued that “the task of philosophy today is to make sense of situations where we are very different but have to live with each other.”

The second panel focused on “Transmitting Philosophy: Inventing New Educational Paradigms for a Changing World”. Dalia Toonsi, a Saudi philosopher and founder of Baseera Educational Consultancy, which runs workshops for children at the conference, argued that children can philosophize and think abstractly. “Children, as philosophers, have so much to tell us and our future will be prosperous and bright,” she said.

UNESCO’s Pedro Monreal explored the “prominence of philosophy in global intercultural exchange”, adding that it was an “important part” of UNESCO’s strategy to “bring peace in the minds of men and women as well as cooperation between education, culture, science and communication.”

Luca Maria Scarantino, president of the International Federation of Philosophical Societies, said philosophy is “so influential” because it helps us “increase our understanding of the world, expand the boundaries of our experience and become more aware of complexities of our world. ” He added that “philosophers are increasingly called upon to think about and understand the pandemic”.

Abdullah Almutairi, associate professor at King Saud University and president of the Saudi Philosophy Association, noted that “philosophy is not new to Saudi society.”

Dr Mohammed Hasan Alwan said: “Today’s conference shows Saudi Arabia’s desire not only to showcase our own culture, but also to forge deep ties with thinkers and academic institutions around the world. whole. By helping to advance humanity’s appreciation for philosophy, today’s speakers contribute to a better world for all.