Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz In Memoriam


Dear Participants of the 33rd International Hegel Congress in Warsaw!

As some of you might know, during the preparations of the Congress, which anyway were connected with many complications because of COVID-19,

on April 14, 2021, our Organising Committee suffered a great and unexpected loss.

Our friend and the Head of the Organising Committee of the 33rd Hegel Congress,

Prof. Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz,

passed away, aged only 45.

Prof. Kloc-Konkołowicz was the Vice-Dean for Research and International Cooperation at the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Warsaw, Head of the Department of Social Philosophy, and formerly a Director of the Institute of Philosophy. He was also a great continuator of the legacy of Prof. Marek J. Siemek.

No words can express our pain. It is very difficult for us to reconcile ourselves with the death of this wonderful person and gifted philosopher, who was a mentor to many of us.

Our deepest sympathy goes to his family and friends.

He played a crucial role in the preparations of the Congress and his death put all our preparations on hold. Notwithstanding the circumstances we - his younger colleagues - decided to continue with the preparations of the Congress and to commemorate him by this event, which was so important to him.

On this page we would like to introduce you to the person and the achievements of our beloved Professor Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz.

On behalf of the 33rd Hegel Congress Organizing Committee,

Natalia Juchniewicz, Michał Dobrzański,

Jan Molina, Filip Gołaszewski, Patrycja Pendrakowska, Denys Kaidalov, Amadeusz Just, Agata Kowalewska, Wojciech Kozyra, Joanna Wysocka-Andrusiewicz


Liebe Teilnehmende am 33. Internationalen Hegel-Kongress in Warschau!

Während der Vorbereitungsarbeiten des Kongresses, die ohnehin mit vielen Problemen wegen der COVID-19-Pandemie verbunden waren, erlitt unser Organisationteam einen großen und unerwarteten Verlust.

Am 14. April 2021 verstarb im Alter von nur 45 Jahren

Prof. Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz,

unser Freund und der Leiter des Organisationskomitees des 33. Hegel-Kongresses.

Prof. Kloc-Konkołowicz war Prodekan für Forschung und internationale Zusammenarbeit, Leiter der Sektion für Sozialphilosophie und ehemaliger Direktor des Instituts für Philosophie. Er war auch ein hochbegabter Fortführer der Tradition von Prof. Marek J. Siemek.

Es gibt keine Worte, die unseren Schmerz ausdrücken könnten. Es ist sehr schwer, uns mit dem Tod dieses wunderbaren Menschen und begabten Philosophen, der für viele von uns ein Mentor war, auszusöhnen.

Unser tiefstes Mitgefühl gilt seiner Familie und seinen Freunden.

Viele von Ihnen wissen bestimmt, spielte er in den Vorbereitungen des Kongresses eine führende Rolle und sein Tod brachte alle unseren Vorbereitungsarbeiten zum Halt. Trotz der Umstände beschlossen wir – seine jüngeren Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeiter –weiterzumachen und mit der Durchführung dieses Kongresses, der ihm so wichtig gewesen wäre, seiner zu gedenken.

Auf dieser Seite möchten wir Ihnen die Person und das Werk unseres lieben Professors Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz vorstellen.

Für das Organistaionsteam des 33. Hegel-Kongresses,

Natalia Juchniewicz, Michał Dobrzański,

Jan Molina, Filip Gołaszewski, Patrycja Pendrakowska, Denys Kaidalov, Amadeusz Just, Agata Kowalewska, Wojciech Kozyra, Joanna Wysocka-Andrusiewicz

Life and Work of Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz (1975-2021)

by Andrzej Maciej Kaniowski, University of Łódź

Translation by Filip Gołaszewski

Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz was a specialist in German philosophy, both classical and contemporary. He conducted his studies in a twofold perspective: from the historical point of view of a researcher oriented both to old and contemporary conceptions, as well as from the systematic perspective of a philosopher searching for the most relevant solution of an important philosophical problem. In his analyses and investigations he was primarily concerned with the topics present in the field of social philosophy such as the concept of justice, the problem of intersubjectivity, the question of «recognition», understanding of freedom, reflection about the state and power, methods of describing «practical reason» and rationality in German social philosophy, as well as many more specific, but very important issues, such as Hegel’s view on Reformation as a process of "making the world ethical".

The evidences of his significant scientific competency are the two books which were highly valued by specialists, and also numerous articles that he published not only in main Polish philosophical journals, but also – and in recent years mostly – in the important German serial publications and renowned specialist journals in the field of philosophy, such as “Fichte-Studien” or “Hegel-Jahrbuch”.

His book entitled „Practical reason in Kant’s and Fichte’s philosophies. The primacy of practicality in classical German philosophy” (in original: „Rozum praktyczny w filozofii Kanta i Fichtego. Prymat praktyczności w klasycznej filozofii niemieckiej”) – that was based on his doctoral dissertation, written under the supervision of Prof. Marek J. Siemek – was also highly valued scientifically. It was published in 2007 in the series “Monografie Fundacji na rzecz Nauki Polskiej.” Another work of Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz entitled „Anerkennung als Verpflichtung. Klassische Konzepte der Anerkennung und ihre Bedeutung für aktuelle Debate” was published in 2015 by the German publishing house -Königshausen & Neumann. One of the goals of Kloc-Konkołowicz’s argumentation was pointing out that the issues centered around the problem of «recognition», whose genesis is commonly located in Hegel’s philosophy, was in fact present and important in Fichte’s reflection, and even in the works of Kant. Another goal was to justify that those classical approaches to recognition (Anerkennung) are still of great importance for today's debates in the field of social philosophy and for the concepts developed by the followers of the tradition of critical social theory (mainly Axel Honneth, Rainer Frost but also Jürgen Habermas). In the preface to Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz’s work Axel Honneth, in admiration for the polemical significance of the author's arguments – also in respect to Honneth’s own conception of «recognition» -, expresses gratitude for sharpening the “family debate” that will be still alive between those deliberating on the most appropriate approach to the concept of «recognition». On the one side there are defenders of the option close to Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz’s, who support Kantian individualism and, on the other side, there are supporters of the option favoring Hegel’s holism, a perspective represented by Axel Honneth. “I am deeply grateful to my Polish Colleague” – Axel Honneth writes in the «Preface» “for the opening of this «family debate» around «moral aspects» («Moralität») of recognition.”

During the years 2000/2001, before he was granted the PhD, Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz was a scholarship holder of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) at the Univeristy of Tübingen (where at that time Otfried Höffe was one of the most prominent professors ). A token of appreciation for Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz’s scientific achievements was also his scholarship granted to him by the Foundation for Polish Science in the years 2002/2003. In 2005 he also received the Award of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland for his above-mentioned doctoral dissertation. Undoubtedly, the scholarship granted to him by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the following residence in the years 2006/2007 at the University of J. W. Goethe in Frankfurt am Main, where his research supervisor was Prof. Axel Honneth, played a very important role in Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz’s scientific development. His scholarship residencies in Germany, as well as his active participation in significant conferences and congresses related to the philosophy of Kant, Fichte and Hegel, resulted in an extensive international network of cooperations.. Thanks to these contacts – but as much to his personal qualities and the ability of bringing people together –, Prof. Kloc-Konkołowicz was able to conduct – firstly in cooperation and then as the leader of the German Philosophy Lab – a seminar devoted to German philosophy, which was regularly attended by professors and lecturers from Germany.

Prof. Kloc-Konkołowicz co-directed – together with Prof. Jan C. Joerden (Europa Universität-Viadrina) - Polish-German summer seminars for students and doctoral students organized in years 2013-2017 by the Chair of Ethics of the University of Łódź, which were devoted to the idea of the rule of law and to conceptions of the legal state in the thought of Kant, Hegel and Habermas. He was also the main organizer of the International Hegel Congress of the International Hegel Society, which was supposed to take place last year in Warsaw and which eventually is going to be organized this year, unfortunately without the participation of its main organizer. The fact that this outstanding person and a prominent specialist in German social philosophy passed away is a great loss to the whole Polish philosophical culture, and especially to those researchers who are dealing with classical and contemporary German philosophy.

As much as Marek J. Siemek was an outstanding philosophical personality and a continuator of his master’s achievements – namely Bronisław Baczko – as was Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz a person of such format and a great continuator of the achievements of his teacher, that is Marek J. Siemek. This significant and admirable style of intergenerational way of conducting historical and systematic cultivation of philosophy was now unfortunately disrupted. However, the high-quality work of reflection exemplified by subsequent teachers and their disciples – Bronisław Baczko, Marek J. Siemek and Jakub Kloc-Konkołowiecz – will find, or even has already found, its faithful followers.

This philosophical work is indispensable for everything that Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz believed in – as much as his great Teacher did – and that is the defense of reason in the confrontation with naked force, its eternal adversary.

During his speech at the 12th Kantian Congress in Vienna, in 2015, in a section devoted to circular paths slowly approaching the Kantian thinking by the minds of Vienna, Austria end Eastern Europe, Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz quoted words that he once – at times of his previous stays in Vienna – read on a slab in one of Vienna’s parks, a slab that was honoring Sigmund Freud. This researcher, doctor of a human soul and marvelous diagnostician of culture has once claimed that “the voice of the intellect sounds low, but it does not go silent until it is heard, what eventually happens after countless dismissals.” Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz has shared this Freudian faith and with his achievements he allowed the voice of the intellect to be heard. Let us praise Him for this and we can only believe that He will also find his faithful and fortunate followers.

Book of Condolences / Kondolenzbuch

Lieber Jakub,

Worte werden nie genug sein, um Deiner zu würdigen.

Auch Wochen nachdem Du so unerwartet von uns gegangen bist, bleibt es unfassbar, unbegreiflich. Du hast so viel bewegt, geschaffen, hervorgebracht und so viele Menschen berührt mit Deinem klaren, hellen Verstand, Deinem Humor und Deiner Liebenswürdigkeit.

Hegel schrieb einst: „Das Hervorgebrachte ist wahr, das Wahre ist ewig.“ (GWV 6: 109)

Nun ist es die traurige Aufgabe der Hinterbliebenen, das von Dir Hervorgebrachte zu bewahren und in Deinem Sinne fortzuführen.

In dankbarer Erinnerung,

Myriam Gerhard

Die Internationale Hegel-Gesellschaft trauert um

Prof. Dr. habil. Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz

Der plötzliche Tod unseres hoch geschätzten Kollegen und Freundes Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz hat tiefe Betroffenheit und große Trauer ausgelöst. Es ist ein nicht zu bemessener Verlust für die polnische Philosophie, die internationale Hegel-Forschung und die gesamte Forschungsgemeinschaft zur Klassischen Deutschen Philosophie.

Mit Jacub Kloc-Konkołowicz verlieren wir nicht nur eine herausragende Forscherpersönlichkeit, einen leidenschaftlichen Wissenschaftler, einen einflussreichen Hochschullehrer und fördernden, unterstützenden Mentor junger NachwuchswissenschaftlerInnen, sondern vor allem auch einen wunderbaren Menschen. Sein Geist, sein Humor und seine liebenswürdige Art werden in unvergessener Erinnerung bleiben.

Der XXXIII. Internationale Hegel-Kongress lag Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz sehr am Herzen. Mit unermüdlichen Elan und Einfallsreichtum hat er sich der nicht einfachen Aufgabe gestellt, den Kongress trotz der schwierigen Situation der Pandemie zu organisieren. Wir wollen diesen Kongress zu Ehren und in dankbarer Erinnerung an Jakub Kloc-Konkołowicz mit Leben erfüllen.

Der Vorstand der Internationalen Hegel-Gesellschaft

Brady Bowman

Myriam Gerhard

Jure Zovko