April 24-26, 2020

Second International Conference
 Why Still Education?

2nd International Conference

 Why Still Education?

Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory

University of Belgrade


Emancipation and/or Education: Challenges and Frictions

Sremski Karlovci, Serbia

24 – 26 April 2020


The relation between emancipation and education is fraught with tensions. Even though we are the inheritors of the emancipatory potential of the Enlightenment, never before have these potentials come under rigorous critical scrutiny from various intellectual traditions of the second half of 20th century such as postcolonial studies, poststructuralist thought, feminist critique, etc. But precisely because the classic emancipatory ideal becomes outdated, the idea of emancipation is in need of rethinking and rearticulating. We want to question whether, and to what extent, in rethinking emancipation, the role and the aim of education must be rethought as well.

Given the polysemy and heteroglossia of the relation between emancipation and education, we aim for contributions that thematize the emancipatory potential of education as well as those that problematize it. Some of the still insufficiently considered issues are immediately imposed: Who is the subject of emancipation? And emancipation from what? What does emancipatory education look like at all? Does the education that emancipates today differs from the one before? How can we criticize ideological, normalizing, conformist functions of education and still argue for its emancipatory role? Finally, is emancipation a desirable goal of education at all, or do we by asking this question already assume an instrumentalization of education?

The relation between the two depends much on the practical use. School teachers, university professors, other practitioners of education, and policy makers have their own, often opposed visions of this relation. How are these visions to be realized through particular teaching methods and contents we find in the curriculum? How is the emancipatory potential of education facilitated or encumbered by legal requirements of particular education systems? What kind of change is needed in this respect, and how can it be achieved by reinventing schooling, informal education, teaching, learning, and grading methods, textbooks, curricula? We welcome specific examples and case studies that explore the relation between goals of education and means for their realization.

In sum, this conference will be concerned with rethinking different forms of relation between education and emancipation. It aims to bring together leading academics, researchers, teachers, educational managers and organizers, education counselors to discuss the most recent developments, trends and concerns, as well as practical challenges in rethinking this relation. The overall ambition is to present both empirical studies and theoretical inquiries that could contribute to the ongoing discussion of the role of education and emancipation in 21st century.

The organizers invite panel suggestions with their own topics, but we will also aim to accommodate submissions by assigning accepted papers to thematic sessions such as:

  • Thinking relation between education and emancipation: emancipation from or emancipation of education?
  • Are/Must/Should education goals be related to social ones?
  • Emancipation through tradition or from its hegemony?
  • Can theoretical knowledge ever be emancipatory?
  • How can education go beyond contemporaneity and be future oriented?
  • Emancipatory theory and educational practice: Can emancipation be learned?
  • Social media, digital media and technologies: emancipatory vehicles or new slavery?
  • Visions of emancipation and forms of education: who and how should one decide on the purpose of education?
  • Can learning emancipate? If so, what knowledge and skills are required and how to teach them?

The above titles of thematic sessions are guidelines and should not be considered as either restrictive or definitive. Definitive titles will be determined after the acceptance of selected abstracts.

Organization of the Conference

The Conference is organized by EduLab – the Laboratory for Educational Strategies of the Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade.

Application Procedure

Conference applications should be sent via e-mail to the following address: wse@instifdt.bg.ac.rs no later than January 15, 2020.

The official languages of the conference are English and Serbian.

Possible presentation formats include individual presentations and thematic discussions.

Individual presentations should not exceed 20 minutes. Thematic discussions should not exceed 90 minutes. Dynamic, engaging and innovative discussion proposals are especially welcome.

We kindly ask you to put the following title in your email subject: ‘APP Last name of the applicant’. The complete proposal in .doc, .docx or .pdf format (Times New Roman, 12, double), needs to contain:

  • Abstract (up to 500 words), including title, key words and type of presentation (individual or panel discussion)
  • Short bio (up to 200 words), including name and surname, affiliation and contact email of author(s).


Abstract and bio should be sent as separate documents, and abstracts should be prepared for double-blind review.

There is no registration fee. The Program Committee of the conference will select the presenters based on the submitted abstracts. A book of abstracts will be published and distributed during the conference. The organizers aim subsequently to publish an edited volume comprising the conference presentations.

Refreshments during the conference will be provided.


Important Dates

Application deadline: January 15, 2020

Notification of acceptance: February 1, 2020

Conference dates: 24-26 April, 2020


Accommodation and Travel

We’ve made it possible for conference participants to book accommodation at a discounted rate at the hotel Dunav. The price of accommodation is 2000 RSD (approximately 17EUR) per person, per night for a double room, and 3000 RSD (approximately 25EUR) for a single room. The price includes breakfast. The rooms are available on a first come, first served basis, due to a limited number. Please state in your application whether you would like to book a room at the hotel and whether you would prefer a single or double room. Payment is made upon arrival at the hotel.

Hotel Dunav website: http://www.hoteldunav.co.rs/

Other accommodation options include Hotel Prezident (http://premierprezidenthotel.com/sr-yu/), private accommodation, and AirBnB.

Sremski Karlovci is 1h30min bus ride from Belgrade and 30min from Novi Sad. There is regular bus service operating between Belgrade, Novi Sad and Sremski Karlovci (lines 61, 62 from Novi Sad and multiple operators from Belgrade).


Program Committee:

Igor Cvejić, Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade

Ana Dimiškovska, Faculty of Philosophy, SS. Cyril and Metodius University in Skopje

Paula Garret Rucks, College of Education & Human Development, Georgia State University

Predrag Krstić, Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade

Nataša Lacković, Educational Research, Lancaster University

Boris Jokić, Institute for Social Research in Zagreb

Olga Nikolić, Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade

Đurđa Trajković, Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade


About Sremski Karlovci

Built on the remains of an ancient Roman and a medieval Hungarian fortress, Sremski Karlovci is steeped in history. The town, which was the spiritual, political and cultural center of the Serbs in the Habsburg Monarchy, is home to the first Serbian institution of higher learning (founded in 1791), including a seminary, Grande École of Saint Arsenije (founded in 1794). Sremski Karlovci is known for its historic monuments, great natural beauty and excellent wineries.

Useful Links

Interactive Guide to Sremski Karlovci: http://www.doziviavanturu.com/sremskikarlovci/patrijarsijskidvorulica.html

Tourist Organization of Sremski Karlovci: https://www.karlovci.org.rs/eng/

Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sremski_Karlovci

Bus Timetables:

From Belgrade: http://www.bas.rs/basweb_eng/RedVoznje.aspx?lng=en

From Novi Sad: http://www.gspns.co.rs/timetable/city


From Belgrade Airport:


Material from the previous Why Still Education? conference (Kovačica, 2014)

Conference program: http://www.instifdt.bg.ac.rs/cemu-jos-obrazovanje/

Conference Proceedings: Table of Contents and Introduction

If you have any questions, please write to us at wse@instifdt.bg.ac.rs and edulaboratorija@gmail.com

Posted in Uncategorized