THE PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY
St. Stephen’s College
“May the Philosophical Society of St. Stephen’s College always flourish and go from strength to strength.” – S.K Bose (May, 1981)
From its inception, the Philosophical Society has harbored great minds who have given much to the pursuit of Philosophy. The first evidence of our society, being one of the oldest philosophical societies in Delhi University, has been found as a photograph which hangs in ROOM-XA of the college.
The Philosophical Society of St. Stephen’s was found in early years of 1940 by Prof. S K Bose who studied philosophy under the tutelage of Ludwig Wittgenstein. He was an excellent teacher of philosophy as well as a seasoned administrator whose service to the overall life of the College has been outstanding. In mark of posthumously in 1986 the Imperial Avenue in front of the College was renamed Sudhir Bose Marg. His contributions to the Philosophical Society have been recorded in his book titled “Random Incursions into Philosophy”. He died on the 5th of April 1983, and in his memory the society conducts the prestigious S. K. BOSE MEMORIAL LECTURE biennially. In 1985 Prof. Sibajiban Bhattacharya delivered the First S. K Bose Memorial Lecture. Hence then many renowned scholars like Matilal, Naomi Chomsky and others have delivered S K Bose Lectures.
Throughout the years, the Society has held meetings and what attendance has lacked in numbers, it has made up for in quality. The Philosophical Society conducts its discourses and debates on varying viewpoints from ancient to modern philosophy, Eastern to Western Philosophy and other Schools of Thought. Though the society has been fairly active in its discussions, in the form of papers written and presented by way of comments on, or criticisms of, there has been a dearth of evidence with regard to proper written records of such activities. The society has experienced the participation of great minds, with excellent professors to make the discussions conducive and engaging, such as Ernest Geller (London School of Economics, Author of ‘Words and Things’, 1959), Nishi Kanta Sen (Head of Department, Philosophy in 1964 at Shantinikatan), Professor Jit Pal Singh Uberoi (retd., Sociology, Delhi School of Economics) and the like.
The society has always strived to maintain a democratic atmosphere with the student and the professor given equal standing. Students from different courses are always welcome and the content of the discussion is tailored keeping them in mind, and preserving the intellectual tradition of philosophical discourse. With time, the society has broadened its horizons keeping in mind the advancement of technology and the ever growing reach of philosophy- it now holds movie screenings, seminars, presentations, and actively participates in the Departmental Annual Festival Titled “Praśna” and releasing the annual academic Journal titled “Erevna”.
The Philosophical Society being the departmental Society enjoys the backing of the entire philosophical community of the college, present or past. Everyone student of philosophy including the students of BA Program, MA honours and BA honours are the automatic members of the society. All are welcome at 2.00 pm on Thursdays in Room B, to join a free space for productive, thought provoking discussions on a myriad of ideas, be it conventional or unconventional. The Philosophical Society is for the open minded and the brave, after all, it takes courage to accept the fault in our stars.