An Atheism that Is Not Humanist Emerges in French Thought

Author: Stefanos Geroulanos
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804774246
Format: PDF, Mobi
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French philosophy changed dramatically in the second quarter of the twentieth century. In the wake of World War I and, later, the Nazi and Soviet disasters, major philosophers such as Kojève, Levinas, Heidegger, Koyré, Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, and Hyppolite argued that man could no longer fill the void left by the "death of God" without also calling up the worst in human history and denigrating the dignity of the human subject. In response, they contributed to a new belief that man should no longer be viewed as the basis for existence, thought, and ethics; rather, human nature became dependent on other concepts and structures, including Being, language, thought, and culture. This argument, which was to be paramount for existentialism and structuralism, came to dominate postwar thought. This intellectual history of these developments argues that at their heart lay a new atheism that rejected humanism as insufficient and ultimately violent.

The Reject

Author: Irving Goh
Publisher:
ISBN: 0823262685
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book seeks to posit a response commensurate with the radical horizon of Jean-Luc Nancy's question of who comes after the subject? We risk losing sight of that question today, as we witness a certain militant return of the subject. Consequently, we also risk diminishing our commitment to others and their differences, as the resurrection of the subject tends to bring with it a denigrating indifference to differences. Considering that the work to affirm others and differences remains unfinished, there is an urgency to revisit and respond more adequately to Nancy's question today. That is the endeavor of this book, and it responds with the reject. Through close, deconstructive readings of French thinkers such as Bataille, Deleuze, Derrida, Cixous, Clement, Nancy, Balibar, Ranciere, and Badiou, this book shows how the reject has always been nascent in contemporary French thought. Foregrounding the reject in French thought, this book argues, will enable us not only to rethink questions of friendship, love, community, democracy, the post-secular, and posthuman futures beyond anthropocentric limits, but also advance our commitment to others by ensuring that their differences are not acculturated in the process of their affirmation.

Das Zeitalter des Nichts

Author: Peter Watson
Publisher: C. Bertelsmann Verlag
ISBN: 3641148332
Format: PDF
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Fundiert, spannend, pointiert – das hochwertige Standardwerk für Bildungshungrige »Gott ist tot« beschied Friedrich Nietzsche im Jahr 1882. Ein Leben ohne Gott, ohne die Aussicht auf einen höheren Sinn – das gehört zu den größten Denkabenteuern der Menschheitsgeschichte. Der Atheismus mit seinen kühnen, kreativen, nicht selten egozentrischen Protagonisten wird hier von Peter Watson, dem renommierten Ideenhistoriker, als Ganzes und im geschichtlichen Kontext der Moderne erzählt. Er folgt in seiner umfassenden Darstellung jenen Wegen, die das Denken nach dem Ende aller Religion genommen hat, und erläutert, welche Antworten auf die Frage nach dem Sinn menschlicher Existenz gefunden wurden. Dichter wie Paul Valéry, Rainer Maria Rilke, Samuel Beckett, Denker wie Sigmund Freud, Künstler wie Jackson Pollock oder Robert Rauschenberg haben sich der existenziellen Ungesichertheit des Menschen gestellt. Peter Watson erinnert mit diesem Kompendium an eine Freiheit ohne Gott in einer Zeit, in der Religion ungehemmten Machtmissbrauch legitimieren soll.

The Young Derrida and French Philosophy 1945 1968

Author: Edward Baring
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139503235
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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In this powerful study Edward Baring sheds fresh light on Jacques Derrida, one of the most influential yet controversial intellectuals of the twentieth century. Reading Derrida from a historical perspective and drawing on new archival sources, The Young Derrida and French Philosophy shows how Derrida's thought arose in the closely contested space of post-war French intellectual life, developing in response to Sartrian existentialism, religious philosophy and the structuralism that found its base at the École Normale Supérieure. In a history of the philosophical movements and academic institutions of post-war France, Baring paints a portrait of a community caught between humanism and anti-humanism, providing a radically new interpretation of the genesis of deconstruction and of one of the most vibrant intellectual moments of modern times.

Atheists

Author: Nick Spencer
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 147290298X
Format: PDF, ePub
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The clash between atheism and religion has become the defining battle of the 21st century. Books on and about atheism retain high profile and popularity, and atheist movements on both sides of the Atlantic capture headlines with high-profile campaigns and adverts. However, very little has been written on the history of atheism, and this book fills that conspicuous gap. Instead of treating atheism just as a philosophical or scientific idea about the non-existence of God, Atheists: The Origin of the Species places the movement in its proper social and political context. Because atheism in Europe developed in reaction to the Christianity that dominated the continent's intellectual, social and political life, it adopted, adapted and reacted against its institutions as well as its ideas. Accordingly, the history of atheism is as much about social and political movements as it is scientific or philosophical ideas. This is the story not only of Hobbes, Hume, and Darwin, but also of Thomas Aitkenhead hung for blasphemous atheism, Percy Shelley expelled for adolescent atheism, and the Marquis de Sade imprisoned for libertine atheism; of the French revolutionary Terror and the Soviet League of the Militant Godless; of the rise of the US Religious Right and of Islamic terrorism. Looking at atheism in its full sociopolitical context helps explain why it has looked so very different in different countries. It also explains why there has been a recent upsurge in atheism, particularly in Britain and the US, where religion has unexpectedly come to play such a significant role in political affairs. This leads us to a somewhat paradoxical conclusion: we should expect to hear more about atheism in the future for the simple reason that God is back.

Praying to a French God

Author: Dr Kenneth Jason Wardley
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN: 147242865X
Format: PDF
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Beginning from the proposition that prayer is a theme that occurs throughout Lacoste’s writing, and using this proposition as a heuristic through which to view, interpret and critique his thought, this book examines Lacoste’s place amid both the recent “theological turn” in French thought and the post war emergence of la nouvelle théologie. Drawing upon unpublished and out of print material previously only available in French, Romanian or German, this will be of interest to scholars of philosophy, phenomenology and theology.

The Far Reaches

Author: Michael D. Gubser
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 0804792607
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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When future historians chronicle the twentieth century, they will see phenomenology as one of the preeminent social and ethical philosophies of its age. The phenomenological movement not only produced systematic reflection on common moral concerns such as distinguishing right from wrong and explaining the status of values; it also called on philosophy to renew European societies facing crisis, an aim that inspired thinkers in interwar Europe as well as later communist bloc dissidents. Despite this legacy, phenomenology continues to be largely discounted as esoteric and solipsistic, the last gasp of a Cartesian dream to base knowledge on the isolated rational mind. Intellectual histories tend to cite Husserl's epistemological influence on philosophies like existentialism and deconstruction without considering his social or ethical imprint. And while a few recent scholars have begun to note phenomenology's wider ethical resonance, especially in French social thought, its image as stubbornly academic continues to hold sway. The Far Reaches challenges that image by tracing the first history of phenomenological ethics and social thought in Central Europe, from its founders Franz Brentano and Edmund Husserl through its reception in East Central Europe by dissident thinkers such as Jan Patočka, Karol Wojtyła (Pope John Paul II), and Václav Havel.

Adventures of the Symbolic

Author: Warren Breckman
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231512899
Format: PDF
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Marxism's collapse in the twentieth century profoundly altered the style and substance of Western European radical thought. To build a more robust form of democratic theory and action, prominent theorists moved to reject revolution, abandon class for more fragmented models of social action, and elevate the political over the social. Acknowledging the constructedness of society and politics, they chose the "symbolic" as a concept powerful enough to reinvent leftist thought outside a Marxist framework. Following Maurice Merleau-Ponty's Adventures of the Dialectic, which reassessed philosophical Marxism at mid century, Warren Breckman critically revisits these thrilling experiments in the aftermath of Marxism. The post-Marxist idea of the symbolic is dynamic and complex, uncannily echoing the early German Romantics, who first advanced a modern conception of symbolism and the symbolic. Hegel and Marx denounced the Romantics for their otherworldly and nebulous posture, yet post-Marxist thinkers appreciated the rich potential of the ambiguities and paradoxes the Romantics first recognized. Mapping different ideas of the symbolic among contemporary thinkers, Breckman traces a fascinating reflection of Romantic themes and resonances, and he explores in depth the effort to reconcile a radical and democratic political agenda with a politics that does not privilege materialist understandings of the social. Engaging with the work of Claude Lévi-Strauss, Cornelius Castoriadis, Claude Lefort, Marcel Gauchet, Ernesto Laclau, Chantal Mouffe, and Slavoj i ek, Breckman uniquely situates these important theorists within two hundred years of European thought and extends their profound relevance to today's political activism.

Encountering Religion

Author: Tyler Roberts
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 023153549X
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Tyler Roberts encourages scholars to abandon rigid conceptual oppositions between "secular" and "religious" to better understand how human beings actively and thoughtfully engage with their worlds and make meaning. The artificial distinction between a self-conscious and critical "academic study of religion" and an ideological and authoritarian "religion," he argues, only obscures the phenomenon. Instead, Roberts calls on intellectuals to approach the field as a site of "encounter" and "response," illuminating the agency, creativity, and critical awareness of religious actors. To respond to religion is to ask what religious behaviors and representations mean to us in our individual worlds, and scholars must confront questions of possibility and becoming that arise from testing their beliefs, imperatives, and practices. Roberts refers to the work of Hent de Vries, Eric Santner, and Stanley Cavell, each of whom exemplifies encounter and response in their writings as they traverse philosophy and religion to expose secular thinking to religious thought and practice. This approach highlights the resources religious discourse can offer to a fundamental reorientation of critical thought. In humanistic criticism after secularism, the lines separating the creative, the pious, and the critical themselves become the subject of question and experimentation.

Blood

Author: Gil Anidjar
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231537255
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Blood, according to Gil Anidjar, maps the singular history of Christianity. As a category for historical analysis, blood can be seen through its literal and metaphorical uses as determining, sometimes even defining Western culture, politics, and social practices and their wide-ranging incarnations in nationalism, capitalism, and law. Engaging with a variety of sources, Anidjar explores the presence and the absence, the making and unmaking of blood in philosophy and medicine, law and literature, and economic and political thought from ancient Greece to medieval Spain, from the Bible to Shakespeare and Melville. The prevalence of blood in the social, juridical, and political organization of the modern West signals that we do not live in a secular age into which religion could return. Flowing across multiple boundaries, infusing them with violent precepts that we must address, blood undoes the presumed oppositions between religion and politics, economy and theology, and kinship and race. It demonstrates that what we think of as modern is in fact imbued with Christianity. Christianity, Blood fiercely argues, must be reconsidered beyond the boundaries of religion alone.