Going Virtual

The 2020 Cornell Summer Colloquium in Medieval Philosophy

is going virtual — June 3-5 on Zoom

  1. Three sessions each day between 10:30 and 16:30 (New York time: UTC/GMT -4 hours)

    • this will allow participation across a significant range of time zones, from the west coast of the US (PDT, UTC/GMT -7) to Central Europe (CEST, UTC/GMT +2)
    • length of sessions will vary, depending on format (see 2 below)
  2. Sessions may take one of these forms:

    • full presentation + discussion: 75 minutes in length (roughly 45 minutes for presentation + 30 minutes discussion); this replicates the typical form of in-person sessions in recent years
    • short presentation (distribute paper in advance) + discussion: 60 minutes in length (20 minutes for summary presentation + 40 minutes discussion)
  3. Informal conversations during breaks

    • we’ll try to leverage Zoom functionality to replicate the opportunities to converse informally with other participants that are a highlight of the analogue colloquium
    • unfortunately, you’ll have to provide your own refreshments

I hope that you’ll be willing to bring your usual intelligence, energy, and generosity to this year’s colloquium in its unusual 2020 format.

If you’re interested in taking part, please let me know.

Preserving the culture of the analogue colloquium

The colloquium has been meeting in-person for over twenty years, and feedback from participants suggests that it has a particular culture with particular virtues. Going virtual requires some modification of the tried-and-true analogue format. But I’m eager to preserve as many of the analogue virtues as possible. The analogue colloquium:

  • has reliably high quality presentations and lively, stimulating, illuminating discussions — Zoom should present no obstacle to continuing this tradition
  • offers flexibility to presenters who are welcome to present polished papers or less formal work-in-progress — the two session options (see item 2 above) should provide similar flexibility while being sensitive to the amount of time we spend in front of a screen
  • places no burdensome requirements regarding preparation ahead of time — the virtual format introduces the option of distributing papers in advance (see 2 above) which represents a small concession to the rigors of being screen-bound
  • offers plenty of unstructured time (breaks between papers, and lunch and dinner gatherings) for rich, informal discussion and conversation — this will be the hardest virtue to replicate on Zoom but we’ll see what we can do within the limits of the technology