Kantian Courage:Advancing the Enlightenment in Contemporary Political Theory
Advancing the Enlightenment in Contemporary Political Theory
Publication Year: 2012
Published by: Fordham University Press
Series: Just Ideas
Title Page, Copyright
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The Enlightenment was an intellectual and political movement committed to charting a new course for Europe and North America after the religious wars of the seventeenth century. The Enlightenment continues to shape academia and progressive politics by supplying ideas, conceptual toolkits, and an ethos celebrating the construction of timely political theories. ...
Introduction: Advancing the Enlightenment
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On January 27, 2009, US President Barack Obama announced that the War on Terror was over. Appearing on the Al Arabiya news network for his first official interview as president, Obama explained, “The language we use matters.” The language of war on terror perpetuates a Manichaean dualism between good and evil, ...
1. Kantian Courage
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In 1932, shortly before the Nazis exiled him from Germany, Ernst Cassirer defended the Enlightenment against its opponents. “Instead of assuming a derogatory air, we must take courage and measure our powers against those of the age of the Enlightenment.”1 Cassirer’s call for courage resonates today when the Enlightenment is again under attack from several angles. ...
2. Formulating Problems
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Giovanna Borradori opens her book, Philosophy in a Time of Terror, by speculating on philosophy’s relationship to history. According to the classical tradition of Plato and Aristotle, philosophy aims to grasp universal principles whereas history seeks knowledge of singular events. ...
3. Constructing Theories
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In a recent book titled Is Critique Secular?, Talal Asad and Judith Butler debate whether Kant, or the Enlightenment more broadly, may still serve as a resource to critical political theory. Asad argues that Michel Foucault is wrong to valorize Kant, the Enlightenment, secular reason, or the modern West. ...
4. Engaging Islam
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One of the most common—and still-illuminating—observations about Kant’s practical philosophy is that it attempts to secularize Christianity. 1 Kant clearly wanted his philosophy to resonate with the predominantly Christian audience that his work addressed. ...
Conclusion: The Battle for Autonomy
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In Kant and the Limits of Autonomy Susan Meld Shell explains why she—and many other political philosophers and theorists—treat Kant’s legacy so seriously. Kant’s practical philosophy has inspired liberal democrats for over two centuries. The concept of autonomy, in particular, has served as the foundation for (American) progressive political thought ...
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Page Count: 256
Publication Year: 2012
Series Title: Just Ideas