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Richard Rorty is one of the most influential, controversial and widely-read philosophers of the twentieth century. In this GuideBook to Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature Tartaglia analyzes this challenging text and introduces and assesses:
Rorty and the Mirror of Nature is an ideal starting-point for anyone new to Rorty, and essential reading for students in philosophy, cultural studies, literary theory and social science.
This revised second edition of our bestselling Key Guide includes brand new entries on some of the most influential thinkers of the twentieth and twenty-first century:
With a new introduction by the author, sections on phenomenology and the post-human, full cross-referencing and up-to-date guides to major primary and secondary texts, this is an essential resource to contemporary critical thought for undergraduates and the interested reader.
Violence has long been noted to be a fundamental aspect of the human condition. Traditionally, however, philosophical discussions have tended to approach it through the lens of warfare and/or limit it to physical forms. This changed in the twentieth century as the nature and meaning of 'violence' itself became a conceptual problem. Guided by the contention that Walter Benjamin's famous 1921 'Critique of Violence' essay inaugurated this turn to an explicit questioning of violence, this collection brings together an international array of scholars to engage with how subsequent thinkers-Agamben, Arendt, Benjamin, Butler, Castoriadis, Derrida, Fanon, Gramsci, Merleau-Ponty, Sartre, and Schmitt-grappled with the meaning and place of violence. The aim is not to reduce these multiple responses to a singular one, but to highlight the heterogeneous ways in which the concept has been inquired into and the manifold meanings of it that have resulted. To this end, each chapter focuses on a different approach or thinker within twentieth and twenty-first century European philosophy, with many of them tackling the issue through the mediation of other topics and disciplines, including biopolitics, epistemology, ethics, culture, law, politics, and psychoanalysis. As such, the volume will be an invaluable resource for those interested in Critical Theory, Cultural Studies, History of Ideas, Philosophy, Politics, Political Theory, Psychology, and Sociology.
These essays reveal Mikhail Bakhtin (1895-1975)--known in the West largely through his studies of Rabelais and Dostoevsky--as a philosopher of language, a cultural historian, and a major theoretician of the novel. The Dialogic Imagination presents, in superb English translation, four selections from Voprosy literatury i estetiki (Problems of literature and esthetics), published in Moscow in 1975. The volume also contains a lengthy introduction to Bakhtin and his thought and a glossary of terminology.
Bakhtin uses the category "novel" in a highly idiosyncratic way, claiming for it vastly larger territory than has been traditionally accepted. For him, the novel is not so much a genre as it is a force, "novelness," which he discusses in "From the Prehistory of Novelistic Discourse." Two essays, "Epic and Novel" and "Forms of Time and of the Chronotope in the Novel," deal with literary history in Bakhtin's own unorthodox way. In the final essay, he discusses literature and language in general, which he sees as stratified, constantly changing systems of subgenres, dialects, and fragmented "languages" in battle with one another.
'I have come to think that one of the main causes of trouble in the world is dogmatic and fanatical belief in some doctrine for which there is no adequate evidence.' - Bertrand Russell, Portraits from Memory Portraits from Memory is one of Bertrand Russell's most self-reflective and engaging books. Whilst not intended as an autobiography, it is a vivid recollection of some of his celebrated contemporaries, such as George Bernard Shaw, Sidney and Beatrice Webb and D. H. Lawrence. Russell provides some arresting and sometimes amusing insights into writers with whom he corresponded. He was fascinated by Joseph Conrad, with whom he formed a strong emotional bond, writing that his Heart of Darkness was not just a story but an expression of Conrad's 'philosophy of life'. There are also some typically pithy Russellian observations; H. G. Wells 'derived his importance from quantity rather than quality', whilst after a brief and fraught friendship Russell thought D. H. Lawrence 'had no real wish to make the world better, but only to indulge in eloquent soliloquy about how bad it was'. This engaging book also includes some of Russell's customary razor-sharp essays on a rich array of subjects, from his ardent pacifism, liberal politics and morality to the ethics of education, the skills of good writing and how he came to philosophy as a young man. These include 'A Plea for Clear Thinking', 'A Philosophy for Our Time' and 'How I Write'. Portraits from Memory is Russell at his best and will enthrall those new to Russell as well as those already well-acquainted with his work. This Routledge Classics edition includes a new foreword by the Russell scholar Nicholas Griffin, editor of The Selected Letters of Bertrand Russell.
On Philosophy and Philosophers is a volume of unpublished philosophical papers by Richard Rorty, a central figure in late-twentieth-century intellectual debates and a primary force behind the resurgence of American pragmatism. The first collection of new work to appear since his death in 2007, these previously unseen papers advance novel views on metaphysics, ethics, epistemology, philosophical semantics and the social role of philosophy, critically engaging canonical and contemporary figures from Plato and Kant to Kripke and Brandom. This book's diverse offerings, which include technical essays written for specialists and popular lectures, refine our understanding of Rorty's perspective and demonstrate the ongoing relevance of the iconoclastic American philosopher's ground-breaking thought. An introduction by the editors highlights the papers' original insights and contributions to contemporary debates.
The perception of what he calls 'aspects' preoccupied Wittgenstein and gave him considerable trouble in his final years. The Wittgensteinian aspect defies any number of traditional philosophical dichotomies: the aspect is neither subjective (inner, metaphysically private) nor objective; it presents perceivable unity and sense that are (arguably) not (yet) conceptual; it is 'subject to the will', but at the same time is normally taken to be genuinely revelatory of the object perceived under it. This Element begins with a grammatical and phenomenological characterization of Wittgensteinian 'aspects'. It then challenges two widespread ideas: that aspects are to be identified with concepts; and that aspect perception has a continuous version that is characteristic of (normal) human perception. It concludes by proposing that aspect perception brings to light the distinction between the world as perceived and the world as objectively construed, and the role we play in the constitution of the former.
'China, by her resources and her population, is capable of being the greatest power in the world after the United States.' Bertrand Russell, The Problem of China In 1920 the philosopher Bertrand Russell spent a year in China as Professor of Philosophy at the University of Beijing (then Peking), where his lectures on mathematical logic enthralled students and listeners, including Mao Tse Tung, who attended some of Russell's talks. Written at a time when China was largely regarded by the West as backward and weak, The Problem of China sees Russell rise above the prejudices of his era and presciently assess China's past, present and future. Russell brings his analytical and insightful eye to bear on some fundamental aspects of China's history and politics, cautioning China against adopting a purely Western model of social and economic development, which he regarded as characterized by a combination of greed and militarism. Beginning with an overview of nineteenth-century Chinese history and considering China's relations with Japan and Russia, Russell then contrasts Chinese civilization with Western. He devotes a fascinating chapter to the character of the Chinese, which he argues is complex but ultimately defined by a 'pacific temper'. With uncanny foresight, Russell predicts China's resurgence, but only if it is able to establish an orderly government, promote industrial development under Chinese control and foster the spread of education. This Routledge Classics edition includes a new introduction by Bernard Linsky.
First published in 2005. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
First published in 2005. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
This book proposes a pragmatist methodological framework for generating practically relevant political philosophy. It draws on John Dewey's social and political philosophy to develop an "experimentalist" method, thus charting a middle course between idealism and realism in political philosophy. Deweyan experimentalism promises to balance civic deliberation, empirical facts, and moral considerations by reconstructing Dewey's pragmatist conceptions of 'philosophy' and 'democracy' from the perspective of social action. While some authors have taken the steps to articulate Dewey's experimentalism, they have focused on institutional rather than methodological implications. This book is original in the ways in which it situates the role of ideas in political practice and contemporary political problems. Additionally, it underlines the similarities between today and the historical context in which Dewey wrote, connects Dewey's social and political philosophy to Greek and Roman mythology, and concludes with a timely case study in which the author's methodological insights are applied. The result is a book that offers a focused reconstruction of Dewey's work and shows its relevance for engaging with contemporary issues in political philosophy and political theory.
Who is God? The variety of images of God tends to overwhelm us in the present age. Is 'God' a fiction of human construction, or a reality that makes claims upon how we practice 'faith in God'? How does this quest for an understanding of 'God' illumine who 'we' are? God in Postliberal Perspective presents an introduction to the doctrine and concept of God in contemporary philosophy and theology, exploring how some theologians and philosophers dare to speak of God as "real" in our sceptical, pluralistic, and interfaith age. Robert Cathey tours the "house of realism" as constructed by postliberal Christians (David Burrell, William Placher, Bruce Marshall), in conversation with living communities of faith and critical work in philosophy and theology, and develops a distinctive argument about the relation of realism and non-realism in constructing the doctrine of God in postliberal theology. Offering a reading of postliberal theology which is open to critical discussion with other types of theology, philosophy, and faith traditions, this book proposes a model of theological reflection that may be extended to the reality-claims of a wide range of doctrines and concepts.
The aim of this book is to address the relevance of Wilfrid Sellars' philosophy to understanding topics in Buddhist philosophy. While contemporary scholars of Buddhism often take Sellars as a touchstone for philosophical analysis, and while many take Sellars' corpus as their entree into current philosophical discourse, fewer contemporary philosophers have crossed the bridge in the other direction, using Sellarsian ideas as a way of entering into Buddhist philosophy. The essays in this volume, written by both philosophers and Buddhist Studies scholars, are divided into two sections organized around two of Sellars' essays that have been particularly influential in Buddhist Studies: "Philosophy and the Scientific Image of Man" and "Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind." The chapters in Part I generally address questions concerning the two truths, while those in Part II concern issues in epistemology and philosophy of mind. The volume will be of interest to Sellars scholars, to scholars interested in the contemporary interaction of Buddhist philosophy and Western philosophy and to scholars of Buddhist Studies.
The Intellectual Origins of Modernity explores the long and winding road of modernity from Rousseau to Foucault and its roots, which are not to be found in a desire for enlightenment or in the idea of progress but in the Promethean passion of Western humankind. Modernity is the Promethean passion, the passion of humans to be their own master, to use their insight to make a world different from the one that they found, and to liberate themselves from their immemorial chains. This passion created the political ideologies of the nineteenth century and made its imprint on the totalitarian regimes that arose in their wake in the twentieth. Underlying the Promethean passion there was modernity-humankind's project of self-creation-and enlightenment, the existence of a constant tension between the actual and the desirable, between reality and the ideal. Beneath the weariness, the exhaustion and the skepticism of post-modernist criticism is a refusal to take Promethean horizons into account. This book attests the importance of reason, which remains a powerful critical weapon of humankind against the idols that have come out of modernity: totalitarianism, fundamentalism, the golem of technology, genetic engineering and a boundless will to power. Without it, the new Prometheus is liable to return the fire to the gods.
This volume addresses the issue of freedom in the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari. This is all the more challenging in that Deleuze-Guattari almost never use the term freedom, preferring instead, the concept of the refrain. The essays collected in the volume show that freedom has been understood in a remarkably narrow sense and that in fact freedom operates as the refrain in every realm of thought and creation. The motivating approach in these essays is Deleuze-Guattari's emphasis on the irreality of media and capitalistic sign regimes, which they perceive to have taken over even the practices of philosophy, the arts, and science. By offering a clear and engaging treatment of the underexplored issue of freedom, this volume moves the discussion of Deleuze-Guattari's philosophy forward in ways that will appeal to researchers in Continental philosophy and a wide range of other disciplines.
To the surprise of many readers, Jurgen Habermas has recently made religion a major theme of his work. Emphasizing both religion's prominence in the contemporary public sphere and its potential contributions to critical thought, Habermas's engagement with religion has been controversial and exciting, putting much of his own work in fresh perspective and engaging key themes in philosophy, politics and social theory. Habermas argues that the once widely accepted hypothesis of progressive secularization fails to account for the multiple trajectories of modernization in the contemporary world. He calls attention to the contemporary significance of "postmetaphysical" thought and "postsecular" consciousness - even in Western societies that have embraced a rationalistic understanding of public reason. "Habermas and Religion "presents a series of original and sustained engagements with Habermas's writing on religion in the public sphere, featuring new work and critical reflections from leading philosophers, social and political theorists, and anthropologists. Contributors to the volume respond both to Habermas's ambitious and well-developed philosophical project and to his most recent work on religion. The book closes with an extended response from Habermas - itself a major statement from one of today's most important thinkers.
In 1996 Jacques Derrida gave a lecture at the Museum of Modern Art in New York on the occasion of Antonin Artaud: Works on Paper, one of the first major international exhibitions to present the avant-garde dramatist and poet's paintings and drawings. Derrida's original title, "Artaud the Moma," is a characteristic play on words. It alludes to Artaud's calling himself Momo, Marseilles slang for "fool," upon his return to Paris in 1946 after nine years in various asylums while playing off of the museum's nickname, MoMA. But the title was not deemed "presentable or decent," in Derrida's words, by the very institution that chose to exhibit Artaud's work. Instead, the lecture was advertised as "Jacques Derrida ...will present a lecture about Artaud's drawings." For Derrida, what was at stake was what it meant for the museum to exhibit Artaud's drawings and for him to lecture on Artaud in that institutional context. Thinking over the performative force of Artaud's work and the relation between writing and drawing, Derrida addresses the multiplicity of Artaud's identities to confront the modernist museum's valorizing of originality. He channels Artaud's specter, speech, and struggle against representation to attempt to hold the museum accountable for trying to confine Artaud within its categories. Artaud the Moma, as lecture and text, reveals the challenge that Artaud posed to Derrida-and to art and its institutional history. A powerful interjection into the museum halls, this work is a crucial moment in Derrida's thought and an insightful, unsparing reading of a challenging writer and artist.
This book is the first comprehensive critical study of the work of Paul Feyerabend, one of the foremost twentieth-century philosophers of science.
The book traces the evolution of Feyerabend's thought, beginning
with his early attempt to graft insights from Wittgenstein's
conception of meaning onto Popper's falsificationist philosophy.
The key elements of Feyerabend's model of the acquisition of
knowledge are identified and critically evaluated. Feyerabend's
early work emerges as a continuation of Popper's philosophy of
science, rather than as a contribution to the historical approach
to science with which he is usually associated.
Throughout the book, Preston discusses the influence of Feyerabend's thought on contemporary philosophers and traces his stimulating but divided legacy. The book will be of interest to students of philosophy, methodology, and the social sciences.
The question of the existence and the properties of time has been
subject to debate for thousands of years. This considered and
complete study offers a contrastive analysis of phenomenologies of
time from the perspective of the problematics of the visibility of
time. Is time perceptible only through the veil of change? Or is
there a naked presence of "time itself"? Or has time always effaced
A History of Modern Aesthetics narrates the history of philosophical aesthetics from the beginning of the eighteenth century through the twentieth century. Aesthetics began with Aristotle's defense of the cognitive value of tragedy in response to Plato's famous attack on the arts in The Republic, and cognitivist accounts of aesthetic experience have been central to the field ever since. But in the eighteenth century, two new ideas were introduced: that aesthetic experience is important because of emotional impact - precisely what Plato criticized - and because it is a pleasurable free play of many or all of our mental powers. This set tells how these ideas have been synthesized or separated by aestheticians of modern times. This third volume shows how philosophers of art in Germany, Britain, and the United States continued the debate over cognitivist versus alternative approaches to aesthetic experience that was at the heart of the discipline in the previous two centuries, while responding to the intellectual challenges of their own times as well.
The later Wittgenstein is notoriously hard to understand. His novel philosophical approach is the key to understanding his perplexing work. This volume assembles leading Wittgenstein scholars to come to grips with its least well understood aspect: the unfamiliar aims and method that shape Wittgenstein's approach. Wittgenstein at Work investigates Wittgenstein's aims, rationale and method in two steps. The first seven chapters analyse how he proceeds in core parts of the Philosophical Investigations: the discussion of the Augustinian picture of language, ostensive definition, philosophical method, understanding, rule-following, and private language. The final five chapters examine his most striking methodological remarks: his repudiation of theory and non-trivial theses, and some core notions of his methodology: his notions of clarification, synoptic representation, nonsense, and philosophical pictures. The volume considerably advances discussion of the therapeutic aspects of his approach that are currently a focus of debate. This volume is an indispensable methodological companion to the Philosophical Investigations, useful to both specialists and students alike. Fischer, Erich Ammereller, Severin Schroder, Anthony Kenny, Oswald Hanfling, Cora Diamond, Hans-Johann Glock, Stuart Shanker.
Theodor W. Adorno and Jurgen Habermas both champion the goal of a rational society. However, they differ significantly about what this society should look like and how best to achieve it. Exploring the premises shared by both critical theorists, along with their profound disagreements about social conditions today, this book defends Adorno against Habermas' influential criticisms of his account of Western society and prospects for achieving reasonable conditions of human life. The book begins with an overview of these critical theories of Western society. Both Adorno and Habermas follow Georg Lukacs when they argue that domination consists in the reifying extension of a calculating, rationalizing form of thought to all areas of human life. Their views about reification are discussed in the second chapter. In chapter three the author explores their conflicting accounts of the historical emergence and development of the type of rationality now prevalent in the West. Since Adorno and Habermas claim to have a critical purchase on reified social life, the critical leverage of their theories is assessed in chapter four. The final chapter deals with their opposing views about what a rational society would look like, as well as their claims about the prospects for establishing such a society. Adorno, Habermas and the Search for a Rational Society will be essential reading for students and researchers of critical theory, political theory and the work of Adorno and Habermas.
The most significant philosopher of Being, Martin Heidegger has nevertheless largely been ignored within communications studies. This book sets the record straight by demonstrating the profound implications of his unique philosophical project for our understanding of today s mediascape. The full range of Heidegger s writing from Being and Time to his later essays is drawn upon. Topics covered include: - an analysis of Heidegger's theory of language and its relevance to communications studies - a critical interpretation of mass media and digital culture that draws upon Heidegger's key concept of Dasein - a discussion of mediated being and its objectifying tendencies - an assessment of Heidegger's legacy for future developments in media theory Clear explanations and accessible commentary are used to guide the reader through the work of a thinker whose notorious reputation belies the highly topical nature of his key insights. In a world full of digital networks and new social media, but little critical insight, Heidegger and the Mediashows how a true understanding of the media requires familiarity with Heidegger s unique brand of thinking.
Impossible God introduces Derrida's theology for a new generation interested in Derrida's writings and in the future of theology, and clarifies Derrida's theology for those already familiar with his writings. Derrida's theological concerns are now widely recognised but Impossible God shows how Derrida's theology takes its shape from his earliest writings on Edmund Husserl and from explorations into Husserl's unpublished manuscripts on time and theology. Rayment-Pickard argues that Derrida goes beyond both the nihilism of the 'death of God' and the denials of negative theology to affirm a theology of God's 'impossibility'. Derrida's 'impossible God' is not another God of the philosophers but a powerful deity capable of wakening us into faith, ethical responsibility and love. Showing how central theology has been to Derrida's philosophy since the beginning of his career, Impossible God presents an accessible study of a neglected area of Derrida's writing which students of philosophy and theology will find invaluable.
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