Jean-Paul Sartre in 1967

NASS 26th Annual Meeting

Join us on Zoom for an
Online Conference
Oct. 29-30, 2021

Link to the program: 

Theme: Existentialism and Embodiment


Keynote Speaker: LaRose T. Parris, Associate Professor of Africana Studies at Lehman College/CUNY and author of Being Apart: Theoretical and Existential Resistance in Africana Literature (2015).


The North American Sartre Society invites proposals for its twenty-sixth meeting. Embodiment is a central theme in existential thought. We invite participants to reflect on the human body and the ontological, psychological, ethical, political, sociological, and phenomenological implications of Sartre’s view that the body is part of the facticity of the “for-itself.” We invite papers and panels on such questions as: Was Sartre a philosopher of the flesh? What tools does existential phenomenology provide for understanding the many modes of human embodiment, including gendered, racialized, able-bodied, and disabled embodiment?  What is the role of the body in perception, sensation, imagination, inter-subjectivity, and concrete relations with others?  In what sense do we choose our bodies?  How does existentialism theorize body dysmorphia and the idea of a “normal” or “abnormal” human body?  What does it mean to exist in a cis-gender or trans-gender body?  Am I a body, or do I “have” a body?


We invite proposals from any area of Sartre studies and from any disciplinary background. In the spirit of Sartre’s eclectic thinking, we encourage proposals that address philosophy, literature, theater, aesthetics, psychology, politics, intellectual history, art, music, and other disciplines. Aiming to foster diverse and pluralistic approaches, we understand Sartre Studies broadly to indicate work in the existentialist tradition, including work emerging from thinkers like Simone de Beauvoir, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Frantz Fanon, Richard Wright, Angela Davis, Albert Camus, Anna Julia Cooper, Harriet Ann Jacobs, Lewis R. Gordon, Frederick Douglass, Kathryn Sophia Belle, Steve Biko, Naomi Zack, Chabani Manganyi, Emilio Uranga, Jorge Portilla, W.E.B. Du Bois, Aimé Césaire, Keiji Nishitani, Azzedine Haddour, Martin Buber, Hannah Arendt, Martin Heidegger, Gabriel Marcel, Emmanuel Levinas, Sara Ahmed, danielle davis, bell hooks, Kamau Brathwaite, Nathalie Etoke, Achille Mbembe, Suzanne Césaire, James Baldwin and others.


Note on our keynote speaker: LaRose T. Parris, Being Apart: Theoretical and Existential Resistance in Africana Literature (University of Virginia Press, 2015). Being Apart articulates the multidimensional project of an Africana existential philosophy.  The book relates the rich history of Black existential thought to the Eurocentric existential canon. Parris shows how Africana existentialism is an interdisciplinary approach to being and freedom that is rooted in the lived experiences of colonized and racialized subjects.


The submission process:

  • The submission deadline is August 31st.

  • We are accepting abstracts of 300-500 words. Reading time for papers is 15 minutes.

  • English or French is acceptable.

  • Please submit your abstract (or any questions) by email to NASS President, Kimberly Engels,

  • Regarding those who had an abstract accepted for the canceled 2020 conference, we are asking you to resubmit.

  • Graduate students are encouraged to submit.

  • All proposals will be forwarded to the program committee for review.