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Home > Archives > Previous years: Seminars > Seminars 2019-2020: archives > Seminar of the Centre CHSPAM 2019–2020

Seminar of the Centre CHSPAM 2019–2020

Science and Philosophy from Ancient to Modern Age

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PROGRAM 2019-2020
Monthly sessions, on Fridays, 9:30am – 5:00pm, at Building Condorcet, University of Paris, campus Diderot*, 4, rue Elsa Morante, 75013 Paris
The details of the sessions (in French, mostly) will be displayed on this page during the year.

Coordination : Silvia Di Donato

All sessions of SPHERE seminars are suspended from March 15 due to covid-19. We hope to be able to provide further updates and to see you soon.
Date Organised by
8 & 9/11 Pierre-Marie Morel
12/12 Mehrnaz Katouzian-Safadi
02/27 Valérie Cordonier et Sabine Rommevaux-Tani
03/12 postponed to December Silvia Di Donato
04/21 Gad Freudenthal & Raimund Leicht
05/28 Cristina Cerami
June Philippe Debroise

Friday 8 & Saturday 9, November 2019

Science and Demonstration
Posterior Analytics, Book I

Gramata-SPHERE (UMR 7219)


University Paris Diderot – Paris 7, Build. Condorcet, Room Mondrian, 646A*

9: 30 Welcome


Chair: Cristina Cerami

  • 9:45am–11:00am Robert Bolton (Rutgers University) : I, 1
  • 11:15am–12:30am Paolo Crivelli (Université de Genève) : I, 1-2


Chair: Annamaria Schiaparelli

  • 14:30pm–15:45pm Francesca Masi (Università Ca‘ Foscari Venezia) : I, 4
  • 16:00pm–17:15pm Yuyao Li (Université Paris) : I, 1-2


University Paris 1 – UFR de philosophie, Sorbonne, Room Cavaillès*


Chair: Carlo Natali

  • 9:45am–11:00am Pedro Mesquite (Universidade de Lisboa : I, 22
  • 11:15am–12:30am Marko Malink (New York University) : I, 1-26


Chair: Pierre Pellegrin

Contact: pierre-marie.morel ( at )

THURSDAY December 12, 2019

!! exceptionnally Room Kandinsky, 631B !!

Place of the strange and the elusive, in the corpus of medieval texts in Arabic, Persian, Latin

Some proposals for the inexplicable

Second Study Day
(1rst: Examination of the attitude of scholars)

University Paris Diderot – Paris 7, Build. Condorcet, Room Mondrian, 646A*

Organised by M. Katouzian-Safadi (SPHERE, CNRS–University Paris DIderot)

In the texts having attraction to natural philosophy, to physics and or to the sciences of life, many questions are approached where the medieval scientists cannot bring explanations to the observed phenomena, according to the current concepts. Some examples can be cited: Poisonings; various healings, whether or not through drug therapy; animal behavior: its reproduction, its moults, its metamorphoses, its adaptations; the existence of phenomena, or strange beings described by travelers or trustworthy people.
During each presentation, we would first like to describe an observed phenomenon (animal behavior, curious observation, plant quality, etc.) and underline the astonishing nature in relation to knowledge or lived experience. Next, we would like to examine the attitude of the scientist towards this phenomenon: how does he describe it? Its position in the face of a possible "causality" to propose? The reactions of scholars could vary between a rejection or an acceptance of the phenomenon. We examine the various attitudes that scientists adopt towards these phenomena. The first day devoted to this study made it possible to identify certain attitudes without making categories of thought. This second day attempts to present some proposals that some scholars are trying to advance in the face of phenomena that are difficult to clarify according to the concepts in progress..

  • 10:00–10:45
    Ğāḥiẓ et Avicenne, lecture du Livre des Animaux d’Aristote, entre restitution et observation
    Ahmed Aarab (University of Tangiers)
  • 10:45–11:30
    Le cas des animaux marins, dans Kitāb al-Ḥayawān chez al- Ğāḥiẓ (776-868)
    Meyssa Bensaad (associated researcher, SPHERE)
  • 11:30–11:45 break
  • 11:45–12:15
    L’indétermination du genre humain et ses complexités selon Rāzī :
    Particularités humaines : Mohammad Sadr (Encyclopedia of Islam, Teheran)
    Particularités animales : Mehrnaz Katouzian-Safadi (SPHERE, CNRS-University Paris Diderot)

  • 14:30–15:15
    Encounter with unknown, unfamiliar and unexplainable:
    Attempts to reconstructing Ibn Sina’s Research Method and Program

    Professeur Masoud Sadeghi (Faculté d’Histoire des Sciences et des philosophies, University of Teheran)
  • 15:15–16:00
    Que reste-t-il des phénomènes réputés ’merveilleux’ une fois qu’on les a ’expliqués’ ?
    Réflexions sur les théories de la magie à la fin du Moyen Age

    Jean-Marc Mandosio (Ecole pratique des hautes études –PSL, Section des sciences historiques et philologiques)
  • 16:00–16:30
    Quelques exemples en neuroscience, de Descartes au milieu du XXe siècle
    Lecture du texte proposé par
    Jean-Gaël Barbara (Sorbonne Universités, UPMC Univ. Paris 06, Neurosciences Paris Seine - Institut de Biologie Paris Seine NPS – IBPS, CNRS UMR 8246 & chercheur associé SPHERE)
  • 16:30 : general discussion

THURSDAY February 27, 2020, 10:00–18:00

University de Paris (Diderot), Building Condorcet *

Methodologies for the critical edition of mathematical and philosophical texts from Antiquity

Organisation: Valérie Cordonier & Sabine Rommevaux-Tani, (CNRS, SPHERE)

Certain important mathematical and philosophical texts of Antiquity, by their status as scientific authority, had a particularly dense and complex manuscript tradition, which made them difficult to edit. By bringing together specialists preparing the edition of major works of Euclid and Aristotle, it will be a question of reflecting on the specific problems posed by these files which, without rendering null and void all the principles inherited from classical philology, invite to reassess or adapt some.
  • 9:30–12:30, with a break at 11:00
    Les principes de la philologie classique sont-ils pertinents pour l’édition des textes mathématiques grecs anciens : préalables à une nouvelle édition critique des Éléments d’Euclide (1. État de la question — 2. Réflexions méthodologiques)
    Bernard Vitrac (CNRS, ANHIMA)
  • 14:00–15:30
    Editer le traité aristotélicien Du ciel
    Mai-Lan Boureau (University Paris 1)
  • 16:00–17:00
    Round table led by V. Cordonier et S. Rommevaux-Tani, with Iacopo Costa (CNRS, LEM), Aurora Panzica (UNIL)

THURSDAY March 12 !! !! postponed to December in view of the health situation in Europe

University of Paris –site Diderot, Build. Condorcet *

Prophecy and revelation in Arab-Islamic and Jewish philosophical traditions

Organisation: S. Di Donato

  • Silvia Di Donato (CNRS, UMR 7219)
    Introduction à la journée. La Scène du mont Sinaï dans le discours sur la prophétie chez Maïmonide, d’après les autographes du Guide des égarés


  • Olga Lizzini (University of Amsterdam & University of Geneva)
    Intellect et imagination : autour de la conception de la prophétie dans la falsafa



  • Meryem Sebti (CNRS, UMR 8230)
    L’angélologie comme fondement de l’expérience prophétique chez Avicenne



  • Peter Adamson (University of Munich)
    Averroes’ Decisive Treatise (Faṣl al-maqāl) and Exposition(Kashf) as Dialectical Works


  • David Lemler (University of Strasbourg)
    Tradition et philosophie dans l’établissement du sens des textes prophétiques chez Maïmonide et Albalag

* University Paris Diderot, Building Condorcet, 10 rue Alice Domon et Léonie Duquet, 75013 Paris. Campus Map.
Plan your itinerary with the Parisian Public Transport
Metro : Line 14 and RER C, stop : Bibliothèque François Mitterrand or line 6, stop : Quai de la gare. Buses: 62 and 89 (stop: Bibliothèque rue Mann), 325 (stop: Watt), 64 (stop: Tolbiac-Bibliothèque François Mitterrand)