Ten scholars talk about life and death
Ten scholars talk about life and death
  • Lee Yoon-soo
  • 승인 2015.03.13 16:07
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The Foundation Academia Platonica  and Ewha jointly organized weekly public humanities lecture series that takes place from March 3 to May 5 in the Welch-Ryang Auditorium.
Established in 2010, Academia Platonica is the first domestic foundation to support studies and scholars of humanities. Under the theme “Beautiful life,” the lecture deals with some of the most important aspects of human experiences including meanings of life and death. Open to people of all ages and cultures, these lectures seek to deepen our understanding of humanity by addressing those key issues of our lives which includes “Who we are,” “How should we live” and “What is a beautiful life.” People interested can register for the upcoming lectures via the Web site (http://platonacademy.org/).
The program brings together guest speakers who are renowned in their professional fields, ranging from poetry and religion to biology, architecture and artificial intelligence.
The first lecture began with a welcoming speech by Ewha president Choi Kyung-hee.
“The philosophy of humanities set the groundwork for women’s education at Ewha; this tradition continues through all our education programs,” Choi said. “Through these lectures, I hope all of us can find some answers to our quest for beautiful life and death.”
Professor Choe Jae-chun (EcoScience), director of National Institute of Ecology, was the first speaker of the two month-long program. In his lecture entitled “the Beauty of Life,” Choe stressed the importance of interdisciplinary approach in talking about humanities and science.
“The word ‘life’ can be mentioned in various contexts,” Choe said. “It can be viewed from the perspective of religion, social welfare and biology.”
He also included death as an intrinsic part of all living organisms, which highlights the sense of ephemerality installed in them.
Some of the audience attended the lecture out of curiosity for humanities.
“I have always thought that I lack understanding in liberal arts and the humanities because my major is natural science,” Choi Hyo-sun (Scranton, 2) said.
Besides students, many of the elderly registered for the lecture as the topic dealt with their current concerns.
“Being in mid-sixties, I think I need a time to refresh my ideas on life and death,” Jang Hong-young said. “My wife and I also went to previous lectures held by the foundation. And I find the series of lectures a good approach in tackling serious topics such as life and death.”
Since its establishment in 2010, the foundation felt the need for a place where citizens can share their ideas on the humanities.
“We have arranged the lecture series in order to create a space where universities and the public can gather,” said professor Kim Sang-keun (Yonsei University), a research director of the foundation.
This lecture series marks the end of the foundation’s humanities public lecture project.

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