Philosophy & Social Criticism, Ahead of Print. This article discusses Jürgen Habermas’s latest book Auch eine Geschichte der Philosophie from the specific angle of what the section on Rawls indicates about the overall philosophical project pursued by Habermas. This tiny element within the imposing architecture reveals a structural problem that affects Habermas’s program for a detranscendentalization of reason. After a general premise, Habermas’s appraisal of Rawls’s work is reconstructed and critically examined. Then, in the guise of a Rawlsian rejoinder, a problematic understanding of pluralism is shown to undergird Habermas’s overlooking of the ground-breaking potential of the normativity of ‘the reasonable’ and ‘the most reasonable’. Finally, this neglect is argued to be indicative of a deeper lacuna: namely, a missing confrontation with Wittgenstein’s rival path to a postmetaphysical, intersubjective, detranscentendalized reason. That lacuna, finally, invites a closer scrutiny of the overall genealogical picture and its central opposition between two pathways to the postmetaphysicization of reason.
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DOI 10.1177/01914537211034907
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