Virtual Seminar: Identity and Orientation

Organized by Prof. Hans-Georg Moeller and Prof. Paul D’Ambrosio

Weekly meetings take place on Thursdays 8:00 – 10 a.m. (US Central Time), beginning on November 03, 2022. There will be 8 seminar sessions. Apply by October 20, 2022. For joining the seminar after the deadline, please email



Identity is at the heart of political struggles today: identity politics has become a defining feature of the present culture wars between the liberal left and the conservative right. What is more, individuals struggle with their identity existentially: sexual orientation and gender identity have become increasingly fluid and contested, and along with the phenomenal rise of social media, permanent identity curation has become a central task of the daily lives of many. From the perspective of a philosophy of orientation, identity constitutes a “steady foothold’ of orientation. But how is this foothold constructed? This seminar traces different technologies for constructing different types of identity through different forms of orientation: orientation to roles, to originality, and to profiles.
Some Western and non-Western philosophical approaches to identity will be explored in the course of this seminar. Informed by these approaches, contemporary conceptions of identity, especially concerning sexual orientation and gender, will be discussed.

The seminar is discussion-based, so participants are expected to read the respective texts before the meetings. The meeting times will be determined in coordination with everyone before the seminar begins. The seminar is free. Please apply by October 20, 2022, via email to