Présenté en 1938, le Der Leviathan de Carl Schmitt clos un ensemble de réflexions que le juriste et politologue allemand a consacré au décisionnisme politique. Au long de son commentaire sur Hobbes, Schmitt aboutit toutefois à un résultat inattendu. Naguère loué comme « le cas classique de la pensée décisionniste », Hobbes s’est métamorphosé à son insu en « ancêtre spirituel » de l’État législateur et libéral-constitutionnel. Schmitt a trouvé chez son allié le plus précieux les germes d’une pensée qu’il (...) n’a cessé d’éreinter sous toutes ses formes, qu’on la décline dans sa version techniciste, positiviste, constitutionnaliste bourgeoise et libérale, individualiste ou pluraliste. C’est en ce sens que le Der Leviathan résume à bien des égards le sens et l’échec du décisionnisme politique. (shrink)
Emmanuel Levinas (1905-1995) is at the center of the renewed debate over the question of the ethical. In the context of the phenomenological tradition, Levinas defines ethics as an originary response to the face of the other. Between 1982 and 1992, Levinas gave numerous interviews, closing a distinguished sixty-year career. Of the twenty interviews collected in this volume, seventeen appear in English for the first time. In the interviews Levinas sets forth the central features of his ethical philosophy. He (...) underlies his dedication to the phenomenological search for the concrete and the nonformal signification of alterity. He also elaborates on issues that do not receive extensive treatment in his formal philosophical works, including the question of pre-philosophical experiences, the ethical signification of money, justice, and the State. The informality of the interviews prompt Levinas to address matters about which he is reticent in his published works. (shrink)
Thomas Sheehan’s attack on my book Heidegger, l’introduction du nazisme dans la philosophie, addressed neither the book’s topic nor its arguments. He instead highlighted a few isolated details in a sophistic and biased fashion. Moreover, his exposition was interspersed with ad personam insults not typically found in philosophical or scientific discussions. Although I had hitherto resolved not to respond to personal attacks, I owe it to the memory of Johannes Fritsche, who was also attacked by Sheehan, to take my turn (...) to speak and to thereby pay intellectual tribute to Professor Fritsche. The article returns to the interpretation of Being and Time and analyzes the meaning and connotations of Heidegger’s use of the German term Bodenlosigkeit. The key methodological issue concerns the need to study the semantic, historical, and political context of concepts instead of hiding these issues by reducing everything to a battle between dogmatic positions. (shrink)
Die Nähe des Anderen, auf die wir uns verlassen, wenn wir "Du" sagen, ist das von Levinas entdeckte, von der Philosophie stets übergangene Thema, das eigentlich und dringend zu Erfragende, zu Begreifende. Denn der Andere ist uns nicht Gegenstand , sondern fremd. Gerade darin liegt die Chance, oder das Rätsel, dessen Lösung möglich sein muß und Hoffnung geben kann; denn die Emanzipation des Subjekts zum Stifter der Einheit von Ich und Welt wurde erkauft um den Preis, daß das Subjekt "frei" (...) wurde, indem es sich als – passive – Einheit, als Resultat der in den intentionalen Akten waltenden transzendentalen Apperzeption begriff.Levinas weist darauf hin, daß dieser Weg der Emanzipation ein Irrweg ist, der das Ich zerstört und das Böse gebiert. (shrink)
Écrite entre 386 et 390 dans l’effervescence de la découverte du néoplatonisme, la correspondance avec Nebridius témoigne, bien avant les Confessions, des questions philosophiques et spirituelles qui passionnaient Augustin au moment de sa conversion à la philosophie et au christianisme. Written between 386 and 390 during the excitement of his discovery of Neoplatonism, Augustine’s correspondence with Nebridius bears witness, well before the Confessions, to the philosophical and spiritual questions that fascinated Augustine at the time of his conversion to philosophy and (...) Christianity. (shrink)
Edith Wyschogrod presents the first full-length study in English of the important contemporary French philosopher Emmanuel Levinas. It is a revision of the author’s earlier study and includes discussions of his recent writings as well as current scholarship. Dr. Wyschogrod’s extensive discussion of Levinas's relation to Judaism, especially his use of literature from the Torah and other religious writings, will be of interest to religious scholars. The author compares Levinas’s thought with that of his contemporaries, most notably Jacques Derrida (...) and Husserl. (shrink)
Though Kierkegaard never explicitly formulated a theory of religious doctrine, he did have a clear position on the role that Christian doctrine ought to play in the lives of believers. Briefly stated, he maintained that Christianity, as a human activity, involves more than merely believing certain propositions about matters of fact. The doctrines of Christianity take on a true religious significance only when they are given the power to transform the lives of those who accept them; only when they are (...) given expression in the existence of the believer. This was, however, far from evident to Kierkegaard's theological contemporaries who, in the collective absentmindedness of the age, sought to replace the Christian virtue of faith with the philosophical ideal of objective knowledge. (shrink)
Au cours de cet entretien, Emmanuel Renault nous offre un aperçu de la manière dont la thématique de la reconnaissance est traitée en France aujourd’hui, notamment à travers le renouveau des études sur Hegel et Marx. Il explique la façon dont la reconnaissance a pu s’ériger en paradigme (en dépit de ses usages multiples et variés en France comme ailleurs), au cours de la dernière décennie et le rôle joué par Axel Honneth dans ce procès. Finalement, il explicite sa (...) manière d’envisager la pratique de la philosophie politique et son projet d’une critique du capitalisme. Emmanuel Renault nous livre également un commentaire critique mais constructif sur la manière dont Paul Ricœur envisage la reconnaissance et suggère quelques pistes concernant les possibles développements futurs des usages de la reconnaissance. (shrink)
Emmanuel Levinas is one of the most important figures of twentieth-century philosophy. Exerting a profound influence upon such thinkers as Derrida, Lyotard, Blanchot, and Irigaray, Levinas's work bridges several major gaps in the evolution of continental philosophy -- between modern and postmodern, phenomenology and poststructuralism, ethics and ontology. He is credited with having spurred a revitalized interest in ethics-based philosophy throughout Europe and America. Entre Nous is the culmination of Levinas's philosophy. Published in France a few years before his (...) death, it gathers his most important work and reveals the development of his thought over nearly forty years of committed inquiry. Along with several trenchant interviews published here, these essays engage with issues of suffering, love, religion, culture, justice, human rights, and legal theory. Taken together, they constitute a key to Levinas's ideas on the ethical dimensions of otherness. Working from the phenomenological method of Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger, Levinas pushed beyond the limits of their framework to argue that it is ethics, not ontology, that orients philosophy, and that responsibility precedes reasoning. Ethics for Levinas means responsibility in relation to difference. Throughout his work, Levinas returns to the metaphor of the face of the other to discuss how and where responsibility enters our lives and makes philosophy necessary. For Levinas, ethics begins with our face to face interaction with another person -- seeing that person not as a reflection of one's self, nor as a threat, but as different and greater than self. Levinas moves the reader to recognize the implications of this interaction: our abiding responsibility for the other, and our concern with the other's suffering and death. Situated at the crossroads of several philosophical schools and approaches, Levinas's work illuminates a host of critical issues and has found resonances among students and scholars of literature, law, religion, and politics. Entre Nous is at once the apotheosis of his work and an accessible introduction to it. In the end, Levinas's urgent meditations upon the face of the other suggest a new foundation upon which to grasp the nature of good and evil in the tangled skein of our lives. (shrink)
A sequel to Levinas's Totality and Infinity, this work is generally considered Levinas's most important contribution to the contemporary debate surrounding the closure of metaphysical discourse, much commented upon by Jacques Derrida. This work contains a fundamentally original theory of the ethical relationship and describes the face-to-face relationship, sensibility, responsibility and speech. Renowned Levinas scholar Richard A. Cohen has contributed a new foreword to this edition of Otherwise than Being, which is also the first time the work is available in (...) an affordable paperback edition. This foreword, along with Alphonso Lingis's extensive introduction to the work, is a valuable tool for researchers and students of Levinas's philosophy. (shrink)
As Emmanuel Levinas states in the preface to Existence and Existents, "this study is a preparatory one. It examines . . . the problem of the Good, time, and the relationship with the other [person] as a movement toward the Good." First published in 1947, and written mostly during Levinas's imprisonment during World War II, this work provides the first sketch of his mature thought later developed fully in Totality and Infinity and Otherwise than Being, or Beyond Essence. This (...) new edition marks the first time this important work has been made available in an inexpensive paperback edition. Levinas's project in Existence and Existents is to move from anonymous existence to the emergence of subjectivity; to subjectivity's practice, theory and morality; to its encounter with the alterity of the other person. He is concerned here primarily with the time of the solitary subject; time is the inner structure of subjectivity, of the movement of existing. "Levinas's work," says Alphonso Lingis, "contains not only wholly new analyses of the forms of time of the present, the past, the future but also a new conception of the work of time." Beginning with Existence and Existents, then, it is possible to begin tracing the progressive "alterization" of time as it unfolds across the development of Levinas's entire philosophy. As a "preparatory" study, Existence and Existents introduces the major themes and concerns that occupied Levinas throughout his career. This is essential reading for understanding both Levinas's own philosophy and the developments in philosophical thought in the twentieth century. (shrink)
Emmanuel Levinas is one of the most original philosophers in the twentieth century. In this book, continuing his thought on obligation, he investigates the possibility that the word God can be understood now, at the end of the twentieth century, in a meaningful way. The thirteen essays collected in this volume offer an introduction to the wide range of Levinas's thought, addresses philosophical questions concerning politics, language and religion and the philosophies of, amongst others, Heidegger, Kierkegaard, Marx and Derrida. (...) The essays also touch on the Marxist concept of ideology, death, hermeneutics, the concept of evil, the philosophy of dialogue, the relation of language to the Other, and the acts of communication and mutual understanding. Nine of the essays appear in English for the first time. (shrink)
" Dans ce livre je parle de la responsabilité comme de la structure essentielle, première, fondamentale de la subjectivité. Car c'est en termes éthiques que je décris la subjectivité. L'éthique, ici, ne vient pas en supplément à une base existentielle préalable ; c'est dans l'éthique entendue comme responsabilité que se noue le nœud même du subjectif. (...) L'humanité dans l'être historique et objectif, la percée même du subjectif, du psychisme humain dans son originelle vigilance ou dégrisement, c'est l'être qui se (...) défait de sa condition d'être : le dés-intéressement. C'est ce que veut dire le titre du livre : Autrement qu'être. (...) Etre humain cela signifie : vivre comme si l'on n'était pas un être parmi les êtres. " Emmanuel Lévinas. (shrink)
Classical (Bayesian) probability (CP) theory has led to an influential research tradition for modeling cognitive processes. Cognitive scientists have been trained to work with CP principles for so long that it is hard even to imagine alternative ways to formalize probabilities. However, in physics, quantum probability (QP) theory has been the dominant probabilistic approach for nearly 100 years. Could QP theory provide us with any advantages in cognitive modeling as well? Note first that both CP and QP theory share the (...) fundamental assumption that it is possible to model cognition on the basis of formal, probabilistic principles. But why consider a QP approach? The answers are that (1) there are many well-established empirical findings (e.g., from the influential Tversky, Kahneman research tradition) that are hard to reconcile with CP principles; and (2) these same findings have natural and straightforward explanations with quantum principles. In QP theory, probabilistic assessment is often strongly context- and order-dependent, individual states can be superposition states (that are impossible to associate with specific values), and composite systems can be entangled (they cannot be decomposed into their subsystems). All these characteristics appear perplexing from a classical perspective. However, our thesis is that they provide a more accurate and powerful account of certain cognitive processes. We first introduce QP theory and illustrate its application with psychological examples. We then review empirical findings that motivate the use of quantum theory in cognitive theory, but also discuss ways in which QP and CP theories converge. Finally, we consider the implications of a QP theory approach to cognition for human rationality. (shrink)
'The Levinas Reader' collects, often for the first time in English, essays by Levinas encompassing every aspect of his thought: the early phenomenological studies written under the guidance and inspiration of Husserl and Heidegger; the fully developed ethical critique of such totalizing philosophies; the pioneering texts on the moral dimension to aesthetics; the rich and subtle readings of the Talmud which are an exemplary model of an ethical, transcendental philosophy at work; the admirable meditations on current political issues.
Réinventer l'humanisme. Retrouver le sens de l'humain. Et pour y parvenir, redéfinir des notions simples l'Autre, l'amour, la liberté, la responsabilité... Humanisme de l'autre homme éclaire les grands thèmes de la pensée d'Emmanuel Lévinas. Texte intégral.
Reality and its shadow -- Freedom and command -- The ego and the totality -- Philosophy and the idea of infinity -- Phenomenon and enigma -- Meaning and sense -- Language and proximity -- Humanism and an-archy -- No identity -- God and philosophy -- Transcendence and evil.
Deux cours. Les deux derniers professés par Emmanuel Lévinas en Sorbonne, durant l'année universitaire 1975-7976. Deux cours qui sont comme une glose méditative autour de quelques mots : Dieu, la mort, le temps. En ouverture, la mort et le temps. Pour la première fois, ces deux notions qui parcourent l'œuvre entière du philosophe sont longuement explicitées. Parallèlement, Lévinas renoue avec sa recherche sur le mot Dieu, inversant les termes du diagnostic heideggerien : lorsque la philosophie a confondu, dès son (...) origine, Dieu et l'être, ce n'est pas tant le second qui a été oublié, c'est d'abord le premier qui a été éclipsé. La tâche de la pensée revient alors à libérer Dieu de l'emprise métaphysique. Au final, ces deux textes éclairent sous un autre jour et à partir d'un angle nouveau trois des thèmes majeurs de la réflexion d'Emmanuel Lévinas. Mais ils reviennent aussi, au gré d'une parole vagabonde, sur d'autres notions fondamentales de l'œuvre : la responsabilité, Autrui, la patience, le Dire, la transendance, le témoignage... (shrink)
Emanuel Levinas and the Limits to Ethics highlights how radically different Jewish ethics is from Christian ethics, and the profound affinities that subsist between Jewish ethics and philosophical and political liberalism. The philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas has captured the imagination of a global constituency who take his absolutizing of ethical demands and his assigning primacy to ethics over all other branches of inquiry in his mapping of Western philosophy to be indicative of a major re-ordering of both personal and (...) cultural identity. It is this re-ordering, they believe, that would restore greater wholeness and value to human life. In this book, Aryeh Botwinick takes issue with both the theoretical analysis that Levinas engages in, and the practical ethical import that he draws from it. Arguing that what Levinas has to say about both skepticism and negative theology can be used to re-route his argument away from the avowed aims of his thought, this book will be of great interest to students and scholars of Jewish Studies, Ethics and Philosophy. (shrink)
Contemporary philosophers are increasingly turning to the work of Emmanuel Levinas to bring a consideration of ethics into their own thinking. As an exponent of the phenomenological tradition, Levinas ranks with Heidegger and Sartre; as a disciple of Husserl, he was one of the most independent and original interpreters, testifying to the fruitfulness of Husserl's phenomenology. In collecting almost all of Levinas's articles on Husserlian phenomenology, this volume gathers together a wealth of thoughtful exposition and interpretation by one of (...) the most important European philosophers of the twentieth century. Levinas's thought is relevant to a broad variety of disciplines and concerns. This volume serves as a reliable introduction for the beginning student, as well as satisfying the expert's more demanding and critical desire for insight into the complexities of Levinas's thought. (shrink)
" A la notion des droits de l'homme appartiennent désormais - inséparables et en nombre toujours croissant - toutes les règles légales qui conditionnent l'exercice effectif de ces droits. Voici, derrière les droits à la vie et à la sécurité, à la libre disposition de ses biens et à l'égalité de tous les hommes devant la loi, à la liberté de la pensée et de son expression, à l'éducation et à la participation au pouvoir politique - tous les autres qui (...) les prolongent ou les rendent concrètement possibles : les droits à la santé, au bonheur, au travail et au repos, à la demeure et à la livre circulation, etc. " Emmanuel Lévinas. Avec " Hors sujet ", Emmanuel Lévinas revient et approfondit sa réflexion sur le noyau dur de sa philosophie : la relation à l'Autre. Méditation superbe qui entraîne vers l'analyse des " Droits de l'homme et droits d'autrui ", une approche singulière du " Langage quotidien et de la rhétorique sans éloquence ", ou encore de " La transcendance des mots. En chemin, le philosophe retrouve la trace de ceux auprès desquels il a fortifié sa propre pensée - Merleau-Ponty, Jankélévitch, Leiris, mais aussi Martin Buber, Franz Rosenzweig ou Jean Walh. Une magistrale leçon de philosophie. (shrink)
Some theories assume that sentences like (i) with a presupposition trigger in the scope of a quantifier carry an existential presupposition, as in (ii); others assume that they carry a universal presupposition, as in (iii). No student knows that he is lucky. Existential presupposition: At least one student is lucky.Universal presupposition: Every student is lucky. This work is an experimental investigation of this issue in French. Native speakers were recruited to evaluate the robustness of the inference from (i) to (iii). (...) The main result is that presuppositions triggered from the scope of the quantifier aucun‘no’ are in fact universal. But the present results also suggest that the presuppositions triggered from the scope of other quantifiers depend on the quantifier. This calls for important changes in the main theories of presupposition projection. (shrink)
Although Emmanuel Levinas is widely respected as one of the classic thinkers of our century, the debate about his place within Continental philosophy continues. In _Beyond: The Philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas,_ Adriaan Theodoor Peperzak shows Levinas's thought to be a persistent attempt to point beyond the borders of an economy where orderly interests and ways of reasoning make us feel at home--beyond the world of needs, beyond the self, beyond politics and administration, beyond logic and ontology, even beyond (...) freedom and autonomy. Peperzak's examination begins with a general overview of Levinas's life and thought, and shows how issues of ethics, politics, and religion are intertwined in Levinas's philosophy. Peperzak also discusses the development of Levinas's relations with Husserl and Heidegger, demonstrating thematically the evolution of both Levinas's anti-Heideggerian view of technology and his critical attitude toward nature. (shrink)
Reproduit quatre conférences faites en 1946 et 1947 sous ce titre au Collège de philosophie, et interroge la notion de temps comme limitation même de l'être fini ou comme relation de l'être fini à Dieu (Electre).
Images have always stirred ambivalent reactions. Yet whether eliciting fascinated gazes or iconoclastic repulsion from their beholders, they have hardly ever been seen as true sources of knowledge. They were long viewed as mere appearances, placeholders for the things themselves or deceptive illusions. Today, the traditional critique of the spectacle has given way to an unconditional embrace of the visual. However, we still lack a persuasive theoretical account of how images work. -/- Emmanuel Alloa retraces the history of Western (...) attitudes toward the visual to propose a major rethinking of images as irreplaceable agents of our everyday engagement with the world. He examines how ideas of images and their powers have been constructed in Western humanities, art theory, and philosophy, developing a novel genealogy of both visual studies and the concept of the medium. Alloa reconstructs the earliest Western media theory—Aristotle’s concept of the diaphanous milieu of vision—and the significance of its subsequent erasure in the history of science. Ultimately, he argues for a historically informed phenomenology of images and visual media that explains why images are not simply referential depictions, windows onto the world. Instead, images constantly reactivate the power of appearing. As media of visualization, they allow things to appear that could not be visible except in and through these very material devices. (shrink)
Levinas on the possibility and need for humanist ethics In Humanism of the Other, Emmanuel Levinas argues that it is not only possible but of the highest exigency to understand one's humanity through the humanity of others. In paperback for the first time, Levinas's work here is based in a new appreciation for ethics and takes new distances from phenomenology, idealism, and skepticism to rehabilitate humanism and restore its promises. Painfully aware of the long history of dehumanization that reached (...) its apotheosis in Hitler and Nazism, Levinas does not underestimate the difficulty of reconciling oneself with another. The humanity of the human, Levinas argues, is not discoverable through mathematics, rational metaphysics, or introspection. Rather, it is found in the recognition that the other person comes first, that the suffering and mortality of others are the obligations and morality of the self. (shrink)