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The definitive refutation to the argument of The Bell Curve.
When published in 1981, The Mismeasure of Man was immediately hailed as a masterwork, the ringing answer to those who would classify people, rank them according to their supposed genetic gifts and limits.
Yet the idea of biology as destiny dies hard, as witness the attention devoted to The Bell Curve, whose arguments are here so effectively anticipated and thoroughly undermined. In this edition, Stephen Jay Gould has written a substantial new introduction telling how and why he wrote the book and tracing the subsequent history of the controversy on innateness right through The Bell Curve. Further, he has added five essays on questions of The Bell Curve in particular and on race, racism, and biological determinism in general. These additions strengthen the book's claim to be, as Leo J. Kamin of Princeton University has said, "a major contribution toward deflating pseudo-biological 'explanations' of our present social woes."
"A rare book-at once of great importance and wonderful to read."—Saturday Review
"Unlike Freud, I do not claim that religion is just an illusion and a source of neurosis. The time has come to recognize, without being afraid of 'frightening' either the faithful or the agnostics, that the history of Christianity prepared the world for humanism."
So writes Julia Kristeva in this provocative work, which skillfully upends our entrenched ideas about religion, belief, and the thought and work of a renowned psychoanalyst and critic. With dialogue and essay, Kristeva analyzes our "incredible need to believe"--the inexorable push toward faith that, for Kristeva, lies at the heart of the psyche and the history of society. Examining the lives, theories, and convictions of Saint Teresa of Avila, Sigmund Freud, Donald Winnicott, Hannah Arendt, and other individuals, she investigates the intersection between the desire for God and the shadowy zone in which belief resides.
Kristeva suggests that human beings are formed by their need to believe, beginning with our first attempts at speech and following through to our adolescent search for identity and meaning. Kristeva then applies her insight to contemporary religious clashes and the plight of immigrant populations, especially those of Islamic origin. Even if we no longer have faith in God, Kristeva argues, we must believe in human destiny and creative possibility. Reclaiming Christianity's openness to self-questioning and the search for knowledge, Kristeva urges a "new kind of politics," one that restores the integrity of the human community.
Born of a terrible insomnia--"a dizzying lucidity which would turn
even paradise into hell"--this book presents the youthful Cioran, a
self-described "Nietzsche still complete with his Zarathustra, his
poses, his mystical clown's tricks, a whole circus of the heights."
In Archive Fever, Jacques Derrida deftly guides us through an extended meditation on remembrance, religion, time, and technology--fruitfully occasioned by a deconstructive analysis of the notion of archiving. Intrigued by the evocative relationship between technologies of inscription and psychic processes, Derrida offers for the first time a major statement on the pervasive impact of electronic media, particularly e-mail, which threaten to transform the entire public and private space of humanity. Plying this rich material with characteristic virtuosity, Derrida constructs a synergistic reading of archives and archiving, both provocative and compelling. "Judaic mythos, Freudian psychoanalysis, and e-mail all get fused into another staggeringly dense, brilliant slab of scholarship and suggestion."--The Guardian "[Derrida] convincingly argues that, although the archive is a public entity, it nevertheless is the repository of the private and personal, including even intimate details."--Choice "Beautifully written and clear."--Jeremy Barris, Philosophy in Review "Translator Prenowitz has managed valiantly to bring into English a difficult but inspiring text that relies on Greek, German, and their translations into French."--Library Journal
The Hidden God revisits the origins of American pragmatism and finds a nascent "posthumanist" critique shaping early modern thought. By reaching as far back as the Calvinist arguments of the American Puritans and their struggle to know a "hidden God," this book brings American pragmatism closer to contemporary critical theory. Ryan White reads the writings of key American philosophers, including Jonathan Edwards, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William James, and Charles Sanders Peirce, against modern theoretical works by Niklas Luhmann, Richard Rorty, Jacques Derrida, Sharon Cameron, Cary Wolfe, and Gregory Bateson. This juxtaposition isolates the distinctly posthumanist form of pragmatism that began to arise in these early texts, challenging the accepted genealogy of pragmatic discourse and common definitions of posthumanist critique. Its rigorously theoretical perspective has wide implications for humanities research, enriching investigations into literature, history, politics, and art.
This volume discusses the importance of Peirce's philosophy and theory of signs to the development of Biosemiotics, the science that studies the deep interrelation between meaning and life. Peirce considered semeiotic as a general logic part of a complex architectonic philosophy that includes mathematics, phenomenology and a theory of reality. The authors are Peirce scholars, biologists, philosophers and semioticians united by an interdisciplinary endeavor to understand the mysteries of the origin of life and its related phenomena such as consciousness, perception, representation and communication.
Melancholia Africana argues that in the African and Afro-diasporic context, melancholy is rooted in collective experiences such as slavery, colonization, and the post-colony. From these experiences a theme of loss resonates-loss of land, of freedom, of language, of culture, of self, and of ideals born from independence. Nathalie Etoke demonstrates that, beyond territorial expropriation and the pain inflicted upon the body and the soul, the violence that seals the encounter with the `other' annihilates an age-old cycle of life. In the wake of this annihilation, continental and diasporic Africans strive to reconcile that which has been destroyed with what has been newly introduced. Their survival depends on their capacity to negotiate the inherent tension of their historical becoming. The book develops a transdisciplinary method encompassing historicism, critical theory, Africana existential thought, and poetics.
Arguing that true Christianity exists only in accordance with free will, Kierkegaard’s stern treatise attacks Hegelianism and the established Church, and breaks ground for existentialism and modern theology.
Essays by a provocative Italian philosopher on memory and oblivion, on what is lost and what remains. The Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben has always been an original reader of texts, understanding their many rich historical, aesthetic, and political meanings and effects. In Profanations, Agamben has assembled for the first time some of his most pivotal essays on photography, the novel, and film. A meditation on memory and oblivion, on what is lost and what remains, Profanations proves yet again that Agamben is one of the most provocative writers of our time. In ten essays, Agamben ponders a series of literary and philosophical problems: the relation among genius, ego, and theories of subjectivity; the problem of messianic time as explicated in both images and lived experience; parody as a literary paradigm; and the potential of magic to provide an ethical canon. The range of topics and themes addressed here attest to the creativity of Agamben's singular mode of thought and his persistent concern with the act of witnessing, sometimes futile, sometimes earth-shattering. "In Praise of Profanity," the central essay of this short but dense book, confronts the question of profanity as the crucial political task of the moment. An act of resistance to every form of separation, the concept of profanation reorients perceptions of how power, consumption, and use interweave to produce an urgent political modality and desire: to profane the unprofanable. Agamben not only provides a new and potent theoretical model but describes it with a writerly style that itself forges inescapable links among literature, politics, and philosophy.
This book by Roberto Esposito - a leading Italian political philosopher - is a highly original exploration of the relationship between human bodies and societies. The original function of law, even before it was codified, was to preserve peaceful cohabitation between people who were exposed to the risk of destructive conflict. Just as the human body's immune system protects the organism from deadly incursions by viruses and other threats, law also ensures the survival of the community in a life-threatening situation. It protects and prolongs life. But the function of law as a form of immunization points to a more disturbing consideration. Like the individual body, the collective body can be immunized from the perceived danger only by allowing a little of what threatens it to enter its protective boundaries. This means that in order to escape the clutches of death, life is forced to incorporate within itself the lethal principle. Starting from this reflection on the nature of immunization, Esposito offers a wide-ranging analysis of contemporary biopolitics. Never more than at present has the demand for immunization come to characterize all aspects of our existence. The more we feel at risk of being infiltrated and infected by foreign elements, the more the life of the individual and society closes off within its protective boundaries, forcing us to choose between a self-destructive outcome and a more radical alternative based on a new conception of community.
Praise for Absolutely Postcolonial: "Finally the word we were all secretly waiting for!"-- Slavoj Zizek "This monumental study transforms the terms within which critical understanding of postcolonial culture has been conducted. Lucid, difficult, highly original and sometimes contentious, Hallward's stimulating book provides a new benchmark for all future debate in this field." -- Paul Gilroy Praise for Badiou: A Subject to Truth: "This is an admirable book in every way, and it is hard to imagine how, as an introduction to a contemporary philosopher, it can be surpassed, so amazing are its range and depth." -- Jean-Jacques Lecercle
"Radical Atheism" presents a profound new reading of the
influential French philosopher Jacques Derrida. Against the
prevalent notion that there was an ethical or religious "turn" in
Derrida's thinking, Hagglund argues that a radical atheism informs
Derrida's work from beginning to end. Proceeding from Derrida's
insight into the constitution of time, Hagglund demonstrates how
Derrida rethinks the condition of identity, ethics, religion, and
political emancipation in accordance with the logic of radical
atheism. Hagglund challenges other major interpreters of Derrida's
work and offers a compelling account of Derrida's thinking on life
and death, good and evil, self and other. Furthermore, Hagglund
does not only explicate Derrida's position but also develops his
arguments, fortifies his logic, and pursues its implications. The
result is a groundbreaking deconstruction of the perennial
philosophical themes of time and desire as well as pressing
contemporary issues of sovereignty and democracy.
One of the most important Central European philosophers of this century, Jan Patocka (1907-77) was a student and heir of Masaryk, Husserl, and Heidegger as well as a philosopher and historian of ideas in his own right. Patocka, who was forced to retire prematurely from Charles University in Prague for his political convictions, died of a brain hemorrhage while under Czech police interrogation for having signed the human rights manifesto Charta 77. Although many of his works are available in French and German, in this volume Erazim Kohak has translated Patocka's central philosophical texts into English for the first time. As a student and personal friend of Husserl, Patocka was keenly aware of the focal role of reason in the constitution of experienced reality. Simultaneously, as a student of Heidegger, he was no less aware of the irreducible autonomy of that reality. This double recognition led Patocka on a lifelong philosophical quest for a synthesis that would bridge modernity's split between the freedom of humans and the givenness of the world and, more broadly, between the Enlightenment and romanticism. For the philosophical reader, Patocka's perceptive writings provide the most helpful key to understanding the basic modern dialogue acted out by Husserl and Heidegger. Yet Patocka, widely respected for his writings on culture and the arts as well as for his studies of J. A. Comenius and the history of science, offers much more: a comprehensive attempt to come to terms with our intellectual heritage and our divided present. Kohak, as well as translating the writings, provides a comprehensive introduction, covering the full scope of Patocka's thought, and a complete bibliography of his writings. The result is an intellectually rich volume equally well suited as an introduction to Patocka, an advanced study in phenomenology, and a historical insight into philosophy behind the Iron Curtain since 1938."
This is a new interpretation and analysis of John Rawls's leading theory of distributive justice, which also considers the responding egalitarian theories of scholars such as Richard Arneson, G. A. Cohen, Ronald Dworkin, Martha Nussbaum, John Roemer, and Amartya Sen. Rawls's theory, Kaufman argues, sets out a normative ideal of justice that incorporates an account of the structure and character of relations that are appropriate for members of society viewed as free and equal moral beings. Forging an approach distinct amongst contemporary theories of equality, Rawls offers an alternative to egalitarian justice methodologies that aim primarily to compensate victims for undeserved bad luck. For Rawls, the values that ground the most plausible account of egalitarianism are real equality of economic opportunity combined with the guarantee of a fair distribution of social goods. Kaufman's analysis will be of interest to scholars and advanced students of political theory and political philosophy, particularly those working on justice, and on the work of John Rawls.
This book provides new perspectives on endurance sport and how it contributes to a good and sustainable life in times of climate change, ecological disruption and inconvenient truths. It builds on a continental philosophical tradition, i.e. the philosophy of among others Peter Sloterdijk, but also on "ecosophy" and American pragmatism to explore the idea of sport as a voluntary attempt to overcome unnecessary obstacles. Since ancient times, human beings have been involved in practices of the Self in order to work on themselves and improve themselves, for instance by strengthening their physical condition and performance through sport. In the contemporary world, millions of individuals engage in endurance sports such as running, swimming and cycling, to get or keep themselves in shape. This study focuses on the ethical dimension of long-distance sport, notably cycling, as a way to become better citizens, but also to contribute to a more sustainable society and healthier planet. Dominant world-views are challenged and an alternative vision is presented. Discourse analysis and conceptual analysis are combined with phenomenology and self-observations of a dedicated practitioner of endurance sport. This book is a great source for philosophers, sport philosophers, environmental philosophers, sport scientists, policy makers, sport journalists, and endurance sport practitioners.
This book is no less than a guide to the whole of Western philosophy - the ideas that have undergirded our civilization for two-and-a-half thousand years. Anthony Kenny tells the story of philosophy from ancient Greece through the Middle Ages and the Enlightenment into the modern world. He introduces us to the great thinkers and their ideas, starting with Plato, Aristotle, and the other founders of Western thought. In the second part of the book he takes us through a thousand years of medieval philosophy, and shows us the rich intellectual legacy of Christian thinkers like Augustine, Aquinas, and Ockham. Moving into the early modern period, we explore the great works of Descartes, Hobbes, Locke, Leibniz, Spinoza, Hume, and Kant, which remain essential reading today. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Hegel, Mill, Nietzsche, Freud, and Wittgenstein again transformed the way we see the world. Running though the book are certain themes which have been constant concerns of philosophy since its early beginnings: the fundamental questions of what exists and how we can know about it; the nature of humanity, the mind, truth, and meaning; the place of God in the universe; how we should live and how society should be ordered. Anthony Kenny traces the development of these themes through the centuries: we see how the questions asked and answers offered by the great philosophers of the past remain vividly alive today. Anyone interested in ideas and their history will find this a fascinating and stimulating read
Contemporary conversations about religion and culture are framed by two reductive definitions of secularity. In one, multiple faiths and nonfaiths coexist free from a dominant belief in God. In the other, we deny the sacred altogether and exclude religion from rational thought and behavior. But is there a third way for those who wish to rediscover the sacred in a skeptical society? What kind of faith, if any, can be proclaimed after the ravages of the Holocaust and the many religion-based terrors since? Richard Kearney explores these questions with a host of philosophers known for their inclusive, forward-thinking work on the intersection of secularism, politics, and religion. An interreligious dialogue that refuses to paper over religious difference, these conversations locate the sacred within secular society and affirm a positive role for religion in human reflection and action. Drawing on his own philosophical formulations, literary analysis, and personal interreligious experiences, Kearney develops through these engagements a basic gesture of hospitality for approaching the question of God. His work facilitates a fresh encounter with our best-known voices in continental philosophy and their views on issues of importance to all spiritually minded individuals and skeptics: how to reconcile God's goodness with human evil, how to believe in both God and natural science, how to talk about God without indulging in fundamentalist rhetoric, and how to balance God's sovereignty with God's love.
Quine's set theory, New Foundations, has often been treated as an anomaly in the history and philosophy of set theory. In this book, Sean Morris shows that it is in fact well-motivated, emerging in a natural way from the early development of set theory. Morris introduces and explores the notion of set theory as explication: the view that there is no single correct axiomatization of set theory, but rather that the various axiomatizations all serve to explicate the notion of set and are judged largely according to pragmatic criteria. Morris also brings out the important interplay between New Foundations, Quine's philosophy of set theory, and his philosophy more generally. We see that his early technical work in logic foreshadows his later famed naturalism, with his philosophy of set theory playing a crucial role in his primary philosophical project of clarifying our conceptual scheme and specifically its logical and mathematical components.
Matthias Vogel challenges the belief, dominant in contemporary philosophy, that reason is determined solely by our discursive, linguistic abilities as communicative beings. In his view, the medium of language is not the only force of reason. Music, art, and other nonlinguistic forms of communication and understanding are also significant. Introducing an expansive theory of mind that accounts for highly sophisticated, penetrative media, Vogel advances a novel conception of rationality while freeing philosophy from its exclusive attachment to linguistics.
Vogel's media of reason treats all kinds of understanding and thought, propositional and nonpropositional, as important to the processes and production of knowledge and thinking. By developing an account of rationality grounded in a new conception of media, he raises the profile of the prelinguistic and nonlinguistic dimensions of rationality and advances the Enlightenment project, buffering it against the postmodern critique that the movement fails to appreciate aesthetic experience.
Guided by the work of J?rgen Habermas, Donald Davidson, and a range of media theorists, including Marshall McLuhan, Vogel rebuilds, if he does not remake, the relationship among various forms of media -- books, movies, newspapers, the Internet, and television -- while offering an original and exciting contribution to media theory.
Walter Benjamin's magnum opus was a book he did not live to write. In The Dialectics of Seeing, Susan Buck-Morss offers an inventive reconstruction of the Passagen Werk, or Arcades Project, as it might have taken form.Working with Benjamin's vast files of citations and commentary which contain a myriad of historical details from the dawn of consumer culture, Buck-Morss makes visible the conceptual structure that gives these fragments philosophical coherence. She uses images throughout the book to demonstrate that Benjamin took the debris of mass culture seriously as the source of philosophical truth.The Paris Arcades that so fascinated Benjamin (as they did the Surrealists whose "materialist metaphysics" he admired) were the prototype, the 19th century "ur-form" of the modern shopping mall. Benjamin's dialectics of seeing demonstrate how to read these consumer dream houses and so many other material objects of the time - from air balloons to women's fashions, from Baudelaire's poetry to Grandville's cartoons - as anticipations of social utopia and, simultaneously, as clues for a radical political critique.Buck-Morss plots Benjamin's intellectual orientation on axes running east and west, north and south - Moscow Paris, Berlin-Naples - and shows how such thinking in coordinates can explain his understanding of "dialectics at a standstill." She argues for the continuing relevance of Benjamin's insights but then allows a set of "afterimages" to have the last word.Susan Buck-Morss is Professor of Political Philosophy and Social Theory at Cornell University. The Dialectics of Seeing is included in the series Studies in Contemporary German Social Thought, edited by Thomas McCarthy.
Existentialism was one of the leading philosophical movements of the twentieth century. Focusing on its seven leading figures, Sartre, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Kierkegaard, de Beauvoir, Merleau-Ponty and Camus, this Very Short Introduction provides a clear account of the key themes of the movement which emphasized individuality, free will, and personal responsibility in the modern world. Drawing in the movement's varied relationships with the arts, humanism, and politics, this book clarifies the philosophy and original meaning of 'existentialism' - which has tended to be obscured by misappropriation. Placing it in its historical context, Thomas Flynn also highlights how existentialism is still relevant to us today. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Addresses a surprisingly overlooked Foucauldian conundrum: what is the logical relationship between modern law and power? Jacopo Martire investigates the development of modern law in conjunction with what Foucault termed biopolitical forms of power. He gives you a much-needed genealogical analysis of the modern legal phenomenon opening new avenues for Foucauldian approaches to law.
This volume, Grice's first book, includes the long-delayed publication of his enormously influential 1967 William James Lectures. But there is much, much more in this work. Paul Grice himself has carefully arranged and framed the sequence of essays to emphasize not a certain set of ideas but a habit of mind, a style of philosophizing.
Grice has, to be sure, provided philosophy with crucial ideas. His account of speaker-meaning is the standard that others use to define their own minor divergences or future elaborations. His discussion of conversational implicatures has given philosophers an important tool for the investigation of all sorts of problems; it has also laid the foundation for a great deal of work by other philosophers and linguists about presupposition. His metaphysical defense of absolute values is starting to be considered the beginning of a new phase in philosophy. This is a vital book for all who are interested in Anglo-American philosophy.
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