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Truth and Singularity

Taking Foucault into Phenomenology. 'Phaenomenologica / P…
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Titel: Truth and Singularity
Autor/en: Rudi Visker

ISBN: 0792363973
EAN: 9780792363972
Taking Foucault into Phenomenology.
'Phaenomenologica / Published Under the Auspices of the Husserl-Archives'.
Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1999.
Sprache: Englisch.
Springer Netherlands

31. Mai 2000 - kartoniert - 428 Seiten

The aim of these essays is to disentangle us from the opposition between universalism and relativism in which so many of the debates in recent contemporary philosophy have found themselves caught. Unsurprisingly so, for, as this volume shows, what is in fact returning in these discussions and manoeuvring them into a pre-set course is the very ambiguity which they seek to repress. The name of that ambiguity is, of course, the subject', but a subject whose finitude seems to have left it with a burden which it did not wait for philosophy to take over. Racism, ethnocentrism and multiculturalism owe their dynamics to a tension at the heart of the subjectivity of a subject which not only lost its place at the centre, but also found its place outside of that centre to be less than comfortable. As the collision between phenomenology (Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Sartre, Levinas) and post-structuralism (Foucault, Lacan, Derrida) enacted in this volume forces one to conclude, such a decentred subject is all but dead. It is attached to 'something' to which it does not find access and from which it cannot rid itself, because it is that to which it owes its singularity. The inflation of particularisms in our contemporary societies betrays an attempt to appropriate that something' and thus to provide man with the roots he misses. But no less one-sided are the attempts of those who in response to this try to locate man's 'deepest essence' (Levinas) in an uprootedness 'beyond' or 'before' any such rootedness. Particularism and its critics are each in their own way recentring a decentred subjectivity characterized for one and the same reason by both 'too many' and 'too few' roots. Such is human dignity: what makes us irreplaceable is at once that from which we suffer and would like to be relieved of. It is that metaphysical unrest in man which obliquely manifests itself in the problem of 'difference' with which our societies find themselves confronted and in which they conspicuously can only recognize an ethical political dimension. What is thus excluded is that part of the subject which does not respond to others because it does not even respond to the subject itself. An exclusion in which one can suspect the legacy of a modernity prone to horizontalize a transcendence which it found unoccupied. Paradoxical as it may seem, something of a verticality in man that refuses to bow to such a horizontalization and to what one calls 'the world' seems to have been preserved in the stubbornness with which relativism, if one is to believe its critics, keeps refuting itself. We propose to call that something 'transdescendence'.
Abbreviations. Introduction.
I: Truth and Finitude. 1. Heidegger's Cave. Being and Time on Disappearing Existentials. 2. From Foucault to Heidegger. A One Way-Ticket? 3. Meaning and Validity. Habermas on Heidegger and Foucault. 4. Raw Being and Violent Discourse. Foucault, Merleau-Ponty and the (Dis-)order of Things.
II: A Silence Which Escapes Intersubjectivity. 5. Dis-possessed. How to Remain Silent `after' Levinas. 6. Uneuropean Desires. Toward a Provincialism without Romanticism. 7. The Untouchable. Merleau-Ponty's Last Subject. 8. A Western Problem? Merleau-Ponty on Intersubjectivity.
III: The Loneliness of a Subject Unable to Disappear. 9. No Privacy? Levinas' Intrigue of the Infinite. 10. Can Only a `Yes' Save Us Now? Anti-Racism's First Word in Derrida and Levinas. 11. The Gaze of the Big Other. Levinas and Sartre on Racism. 12. Losing Face. Richard Rorty's Last Words.
Conclusion. Acknowledgements. Index.
" Truth and Singularity is an outstanding philosophical exercise into the ethics of intersubjectivity that is conducted in a "baroque fashion" (p.20) Visker's manifold interpretations are thought provoking and prone to generate further excursions into ontology and ethics."
(The Review of Metaphysics, November 2002)
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