CFP: “The Concrete Universal: Relevance, Meanings and Perspectives” (2024), ed. by Giovanna Miolli and Pablo Pulgar Moya

14 Dicembre 2023

‘Concrete universal’ is a notion originated in Hegel’s philosophy, which provocatively questions possible modes of relationship between the abstract and the concrete. Contrary to the traditional hypothesis that universals are necessarily abstract, Hegel notably maintains the possibility for the universal to be both abstract and concrete. These two apparently contradictory features must not be understood as static properties, but rather as dynamic and changing conditions that can integrate in complex ways.

Through this challenging and apparently paradoxical view, Hegel invites us to think of the concrete universal as being able to overcome the dichotomy between mere abstraction and mere particularity, in order to think universality together with concreteness.

Via critical transformations and resignifications, the notion of concrete universal has resurfaced in contemporary discussion thanks to philosophers such as Croce, Bradley, Adorno, Butler, Fraser, Žižek, Malabou. It has also acquired a theoretical and practical role in the development of subaltern theories and resistant knowledge projects, as it allows the models of universality proposed by the Western philosophical tradition to be challenged, showing their partiality and exclusionary nature.

This special issue of Verifiche aims to discuss different perspectives on this notion in various philosophical traditions and contemporary debates, in order to illuminate its generative and critical potential.

The following is a list of topics and perspectives that could be addressed by contributions:

  • Prefigurations of the notion of concrete universal in the history of philosophy
  • The concrete universal in the context of classical German philosophy
  • Readings and discussions of the notion of concrete universal in Hegel’s philosophy
  • Reception and elaboration of the notion of concrete universal in contemporary philosophies (e.g., British Idealism, critical theory, subaltern theories, etc.)
  • Implications and functions of the notion of concrete universal in different philosophical areas: metaphysics, epistemology, ontology, logic, philosophy of art, moral philosophy, philosophy of religion, philosophy of history, metaphilosophy, etc.
  • The concrete universal in question:
    • The notion of concrete universal within the debates on universalism
    • Political values and potentiality of the concrete universal
    • Uses, resignifications and transformation of the concrete universal in anti-oppressive theories
    • Paradoxes and heuristics of the notion of concrete universal
    • The relationship between reality and the concrete universal
    • The realizability of the concrete universal
    • The relation between abstraction and concreteness in universality


Submission Guidelines

Manuscripts must be fully anonymized and should be no longer than 50.000 characters. Papers should be in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, or Spanish. Before sending your contribution, please consider the Guidelines for authors and this sample.

Full papers should be received by April 15th, 2024.

Received texts will be evaluated according to the peer review process. Notifications regarding acceptance will be made via email.

Email a copy of your paper, as an attachment, in Microsoft Word (.doc), Rich Text Format (.rtf), or Adobe Portable Document Format (.pdf) to the editors: Giovanna Miolli ( and Pablo Pulgar Moya ( Please include the following information:

(1) Paper’s title

(2) Author’s name

(3) Short biography (affiliation, research interests, recent publications, etc.)

(4) Author’s email address


This special issue is part of the project InRatio (researcher: Giovanna Miolli), that has received funding by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 101025620.