Call for contributions: Earthly Engagements: Reading Sartre after the Holocene

Call for contributions


Edited by Matthew C. Ally  (City University of New York/BMCC) & Damon Boria (Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University)

We are soliciting contributions for a volume that will help rectify the to-date rare confluence between Sartre scholarship and the planetary socioecological crisis that is bringing about the end of the Holocene Epoch and ushering in a new epoch that geologists and earth system scientists have named the Anthropocene. Given a growing number of journal articles on the environmental dimensions and implications of Sartre’s philosophy, the publication of Matthew Ally’s Ecology and Existence: Bringing Sartre to the Water’s Edge, and a notable resurgence of interest in Sartre’s thought outside the Sartre scholarship community, the time is ripe for such a volume.

The central aim of the volume is to show how Sartre’s thought, within the multiple domains of his interest—philosophy, ethics, literature, psychology, politics, history, biography—provides uniquely valuable methodological and substantive resources, tools both heuristic and critical, to aid us in theorizing the Holocene-Anthropocene transition, and in developing our practical responses to the intermingled crises of planetary ecological degradation (climate disruption, biodiversity loss, deforestation, land-use change, ocean acidification, etc.) and global social disarray (wealth inequality, resource-driven conflict, population displacements and other environmental injustices, etc.). In keeping with Sartre’s orientation toward both intelligibility and engagement, contributions should aim, ideally, to advance both our understanding of and interventions in the great socioecological crisis of our time, and in ways that only insightful readers of Sartre are able to do.

The editors have secured ten contributions, from both established and emerging Sartre scholars. The first chapter of the volume will be a reprint of William L. McBride’s little-known 1991 essay, “Sartre and Problems in the Philosophy of Ecology,” with a “thirty-year update” written by McBride. Ronald Aronson will write a Forward. We are seeking roughly ten more contributions.

We encourage articles in connection to any and all dimensions of Sartre’s oeuvre and to Sartrean thought more generally, and are especially interested in connections to phenomenology, dialectics, literature and literary criticism, existential psychology, black existentialism, feminism, and post-colonial theory.

To submit for consideration, please send a working title and abstract (300-500 words), including an institutional affiliation (if any) and a brief author bio (50-75 words), to mally [at] and damon.boria [at]

The deadline for abstracts is 15 October 2018. Completed drafts (3,000-7,000 words) for accepted contributions will be due in spring/summer of 2019.


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