Caputo’s notion of insistence as an instance of existence

Neue Zeitschrift für Systematicsche Theologie Und Religionsphilosophie 63 (3):299-315 (2021)
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Abstract

SummaryIn a relational epistemology and ontology, we are allowed to speak freely about the existence of atoms, chairs, love, and God, on the condition that we are prepared to give an account of the relations we have to them. At first sight, Caputo seems to endorse such a relational view. When it comes to concepts like democracy, hospitability, justice, and God, though, Caputo argues that the relations we have to the realities to which these concepts refer inhibit us to speak of their existence. They are events which insist, but do not exist. In this article, it is argued that the differences between the relations of human beings to existing X’s and the relations of human beings to insisting X’s are not as fundamental as to make a distinction in principle between insistence and existence. In our relational view, insistence is a particular instance of existence.

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