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Antebellum American Fiction and the Phenomenology of Possession
What does it mean to own something? How does a thing become mine? Liberal philosophy since John Locke has championed the salutary effects of private property but has avoided the more difficult questions of property’s ontology. Chad Luck argues that antebellum American literature is obsessed with precisely these questions._x000B__x000B_Reading slave narratives, gothic romances, city-mystery novels, and a range of other property narratives, Luck unearths a wide-ranging literary effort to understand the nature of ownership, the phenomenology of possession. In these antebellum texts, ownership is not an abstract legal form but a lived relation, a dynamic of embodiment emerging within specific cultural spaces—a disputed frontier, a city agitated by class conflict._x000B__x000B_Luck challenges accounts that map property practice along a trajectory of abstraction and “virtualization.” The book also reorients recent Americanist work in emotion and affect by detailing a broader phenomenology of ownership, one extending beyond emotion to such sensory experiences as touch, taste, and vision. This productive blend of phenomenology and history uncovers deep-seated anxieties—and enthusiasms—about property across antebellum culture
The Passion of an Endless Quotation
Borges cites innumerable authors in the pages making up his life’s work, and innumerable authors have cited and continue to cite him. More than a figure, then, the quotation is an integral part of the fabric of his writing, a fabric made anew by each reading and each re-citation it undergoes, in the never-ending throes of a work-in-progress. Block de Behar makes of this reading a plea for the very art of communication; a practice that takes community not in the totalized and totalizable soil of pre-established definitions or essences, but on the ineluctable repetitions that constitute language as such, and that guarantee the expansiveness—through etymological coincidences of meaning, through historical contagions, through translinguistic sharings of particular experiences—of a certain index of universality.
Merleau-Ponty's Notion of Flesh
Leading scholars explore the later thought of Merleau-Ponty and its central role in the modernism-postmodernism debate. Some of the best interpretations and evaluations of Merleau-Ponty’s innovative notions of chiasm and flesh are presented here by prominent scholars from the United States and Europe. Divided into three sections, the book first establishes the notion of the flesh as a consistent concept and unfolds the nuances of flesh that make it a compelling idea. The second section adds to the force of this idea by showing how flesh can be extended to phenomena that Merleau-Ponty was not able to treat, such as the internet and virtual reality, and the third offers criticisms of Merleau-Ponty from feminist and Levinasian points of view. All the essays attest to the fecundity of Merleau-Ponty’s later thought for such central philosophical issues as the bonds between self, others, and the world.
On Deconstruction’s Disillusioned Love
A unique feminist approach to the legacy of Jacques Derrida, Chronicle of Separation is a disparate yet beautifully interwoven series of distinct readings, genres, and themes, offering a powerful reflection of love in—and as—deconstruction. Looking especially at relationships between women, Ben-Naftali provides a wide-ranging investigation of interpersonal relationships: the love of a teacher, the anxiety-ridden bond between a mother and daughter as manifested in anorexia, passion between two women, love after separation and in mourning, the tension between one’s self and the internalized other. Traversing each of these investigations, Chronicle of Separation takes up Derrida’s Memoires for Paul de Man and The Post Card, Lillian Hellman’s famed friendship with a woman named Julia, and adaptations of the biblical Book of Ruth. Above all, it is a treatise on the love of theory in the name of poetry, a passionate book on love and friendship.
Companion to Heidegger's Contributions to Philosophy
Edited by Charles E. Scott, Susan Schoenbohm, Daniela Vallega-Neu, and Alejandro Vallega
A key to unlocking one of Heidegger's most difficult and important works.
The publication of the first English translation of Martin Heidegger's Beiträge zur Philosophie (Vom Ereignis) marked a significant event for Heidegger studies. Considered by scholars to be his most important work after Being and Time, Contributions to Philosophy (From Enowning) elaborates what Heidegger calls "being-historical-thinking," a project in which he undertakes to reshape what it means both to think and to be. Contributions is an indispensable book for scholars and students of Heidegger, but it is also one of his most difficult because of its aphoristic style and unusual language. In this Companion 14 eminent Heidegger scholars share strategies for reading and understanding this challenging work. Overall approaches for becoming familiar with Heidegger's unique language and thinking are included, along with detailed readings of key sections of the work. Experienced readers and those coming to the text for the first time will find the Companion an invaluable guide to this pivotal text in Heidegger's philosophical corpus.
Contributors include Walter A. Brogan, David Crownfield, Parvis Emad, Günter Figal, Kenneth Maly, William McNeill, Richard Polt, John Sallis, Susan Schoenbohm, Charles E. Scott, Dennis J. Schmidt, Alejandro Vallega, Daniela Vallega-Neu, and Friedrich-Wilhelm von Herrmann.
Charles E. Scott is Professor of Philosophy at Pennsylvania State University. He is author of The Question of Ethics, On the Advantages and Disadvantages of Ethics and Politics (both Indiana University Press), and The Time of Memory.
Susan Schoenbohm has taught philosophy at Vanderbilt University, The University of the South, and Pennsylvania State University. She has published several articles on Heidegger, contemporary Continental thought, ancient Greek thought, and ancient Asian thought.
Daniela Vallega-Neu teaches philosophy at California State University, Stanislaus. She is author of Die Notwendigkeit der Grundung in Zeitalter der Deconstruction.
Alejandro Vallega teaches philosophy at California State University, Stanislaus.
Studies in Continental Thought --
John Sallis, general editor
288 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
cloth 0-253-33946-4 $44.95 L /
Elements of a Philosophical Theology
What does it mean to have a distinctively religious orientation toward reality? Martin J. De Nys offers a philosophy of religion grounded within the phenomenological tradition as a way to understand religious life. Focusing on the key concepts of sacred transcendence, religious discourse, and radical self-transcendence, De Nys contends that a phenomenological view of religion allows considerable diversity in regard to the possibility of religious truth. Phenomenology also helps to account for the dizzying variety of religious expressions and religious lifeways. Ultimately, De Nys reaches a universal and complete method of describing a philosophical approach to religious life. This compelling book plays a valuable role in describing human engagement with religion.
Of the Event
Martin Heidegger's Contributions to Philosophy reflects his famous philosophical "turning." In this work, Heidegger returns to the question of being from its inception in Being and Time to a new questioning of being as event. Heidegger opens up the essential dimensions of his thinking on the historicality of being that underlies all of his later writings. Contributions was composed as a series of private ponderings that were not originally intended for publication. They are nonlinear and radically at odds with the traditional understanding of thinking. This translation presents Heidegger in plain and straightforward terms, allowing surer access to this new turn in Heidegger's conception of being.
An ardent admirer and student of Emmanuel Levinas during the last decade of the philosopher's life, Michaël de Saint Cheron sat down with his mentor for these interviews, conducted in 1983, 1992, and 1994. Throughout, their conversations provide further insight into the key concepts of responsibility, transcendence, holiness, and the hostage for understanding Levinas’s notion of ethics as first philosophy.
As Levinas and Saint Cheron discuss a variety of topics — death and time in the philosophies of Heidegger and Bergson, eros and the feminine, the Judeo-Christian dialogue, Levinas’s differences of thought with Paul Ricœur, reflections on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and the “end of history” with the fall of Western Communism — we can clearly see Levinas’s ceaseless engagement with the justification for living after such horrors as those of Auschwitz, Hiroshima, Stalinism, Cambodia, or Rwanda.
Included here as well, following the interviews, are several essays in which Saint Cheron presents his own further considerations of their conversations and Levinas’s ideas. He writes of the relation of the epiphany of the face to the idea of holiness; of Sartre and, in particular, that existentialist thinker’s “revision” of Jews and Judaism in his final controversial dialogues with Benny Lévy; of the epiphanies of death in André Malraux’s writings; and of the radical breach effected in the Western philosophical tradition by Levinas’s “otherwise-than-thinking." Finally, Saint Cheron pays homage to Levinas’s talmudic readings in an analysis of forgiveness and the unforgivable in Jewish tradition and liturgy, culminating in an inevitable confrontation with the Shoah from the perspective of Simon Wiesenthal’s harrowing The Sunflower and some of the contemporary reactions to it.
Jacques Derrida and the Question of the University
This book provides a definitive account of Jacques Derrida's involvement in debates about the university. Derrida was a founding member of the Research Group on the Teaching of Philosophy (GREPH), an activist group that mobilized opposition to the Giscard government's proposals to rationalizethe French educational system in 1975. He also helped to convene the Estates General of Philosophy, a vast gathering in 1979 of educators from across France. Furthermore, he was closely associated with the founding of the International College of Philosophy in Paris, and his connection with the International Parliament of Writers during the 1990s also illustrates his continuing interest in the possibility of launching an array of literary and philosophical projects while experimenting with new kinds of institutions in which they might take their specific shape and direction. Derrida argues that the place of philosophy in the university should be explored as both a historical question and a philosophical problem in its own right. He argues that philosophy simultaneously belongs and does not belong to the university. In its founding role, it must come from outsidethe institution in which, nevertheless, it comes to define itself. The author asks whether this irresolvable tension between belongingand not belongingmight not also form the basis of Derrida's political thinking and activism where wider issues of contemporary significance are concerned. Key questions today concerning citizenship, rights, the nation-state and Europe, asylum, immigration, terror, and the returnof religion all involve assumptions and ideas about belonging; and they entail constitutional, legal, institutional and material constraints that take shape precisely on the basis of such ideas. This project will therefore open up a key question: Can deconstruction's insight into the paradoxical institutional standing of philosophy form the basis of a meaningful political response by theoryto a number of contemporary international issues?