Dmitri Nikulin

Professor of Philosophy, The New School for Social Research (New York)

Resident at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften:
October 2009; May‒July 2012; August 2015‒January 2016; August‒October 2019

Research topic at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften:
»Responsibility and Hope«

Project outline:
After the publication of Hans Jonas' Das Prinzip Verantwortung forty years ago, the principle of responsibility has become a key concept in moral and political debates. Yet the unconditional responsibility for the possibility of the existence of future generations – not only of humans, but also of other living beings – is invariably accompanied by the ›heuristics of fear‹, which presupposes imagining the worst-case scenario and a pronouncedly bleak future. The dystopian principle of responsibility was introduced as a response to Bloch's Das Prinzip Hoffnung, which envisions the possibility of a utopian future for humanity. The proposed project will discuss these two principles and will argue that they are not mutually exclusive, so that, while still preserving the imperative of responsibility, one can maintain a utopian ideal as a regulative idea for moral and political action. (Dmitri Nikulin)

Research partner:
While at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, Professor Nikulin will be working together with Rainer Forst (Professor of Political Theory and Philosophy at Frankfurt University). His stays are supported by the Gerda and Alfons Kassel Foundation and the Cluster of Excellence »The formation of normative orders«.

Please find more information about Dmitri Nikulin here.

Scholarly profile of Dmitri Nikulin

Main areas of research:
Philosophy and history of science of late antiquity and early modernity (17th century), philosophy of dialogue, philosophy of history

Selected publications:
  1. Neoplatonism in Late Antiquity, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2019.
  2. Memory. A History, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2015.
  3. Comedy. Seriously, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan 2014.
  4. Metaphysik und Ethik. Theoretische und praktische Philosophie in Antike und Neuzeit, München: C. H. Beck 1996.
  5. Matter, Imagination, and Geometry. Ontology, Natural Philosophy, and Mathematics in Plotinus, Proclus, and Descartes, Farnham: Ashgate 2002.
  6. On Dialogue, Lanham: Lexington 2006.
  7. Dialectic and Dialogue, Stanford: Stanford University Press 2010.

Further academic activities:
Dmitri Nikulin is member of the Board of Editors of the Kritische Gesamtausgabe der Werke von Hans Jonas (in affiliation with the Hans Jonas-Zentrum, Berlin).