On the True Sense of Art collects essays by philosophers responding to John Sallis's Transfigurements: On the True Sense of Art as well as his other works on the philosophy of art, including Force of Imagination and Logic of Imagination. Each of the chapters, by some of the leading thinkers in Continental philosophy, engages Sallis's work on both ancient and new senses of aesthetics--a transfiguration of aesthetics--as a beginning that is always beginning again. With a responsive essay by Sallis himself, (...) On the True Sense of Art forms a critical introduction to the thought of this generation's most important aesthetician. (shrink)
Thinkers like Slavoj Žižek and Tim Morton have heralded the end of our ideological constructions of nature, warning that popular “ecology” or the “natural” is just the latest opiate of the masses. Attempting to think what I call Nature after Nature, I turn to the Kamakura period Zen master Dōgen Eihei to explore the possibilities of thinking Nature in its non-ideological self-presentation or what Dōgen called “mountains and rivers.” I bring Dōgen into dialogue with his great champion, the American poet (...) Gary Snyder, as well as with thinkers as diverse as Schelling, Kundera, Žižek, Agamben, and Muir. Beyond Nature being any one thing, what Badiou derides as the “cosmological one,” I argue for the reawakening and sobering up to multiple Nature, beyond its appearance as an object to a discerning subject, as the bioregions which give us our interdependent and dynamic being. (shrink)
This is an appreciative examination of Matthias Fritsch’s significant new book, Taking Turns with the Earth: Phenomenology, Deconstruction, and Intergenerational Justice. After analyzing the temporal axis of Fritsch’s intervention into the question of intergenerational justice in the context of the ecological crisis, I extend it to a complementary spatial analysis by following some of the book’s important cues. I develop this in terms of some recent North American Indigenous philosophy, including Winona LaDuke, Glen Sean Coulthard, and Leanne Simpson.
"Blessed are they who are empty, for in them life finds no restrictions, no barriers."I begin by expressing my heartfelt gratitude to my three astute readers, all of whose own work I admire and esteem. They already inhabit the philosophical universe to which my book aspires, and I am moved that they recognize this. Writing, to borrow Paul Celan's famous simile, often seems like a message in a bottle, tossed out to sea. How rare and wonderful that it washes ashore, (...) and rarer still when received in a heartland!These insightful comments, provocative embellishments and commentaries, and well-posed questions are, to my thinking, the highest honor that a reader can grant a text. I learned much from them. As Maurice... (shrink)
_ Source: _Volume 46, Issue 1, pp 117 - 134 This essay attends to both the critical and poetic work of David Pollard. In so doing, it not only engages the works themselves, but also allows the contours of such an engagement to manifest themselves, both with regards to the works at hand and more broadly. What does reading and thinking with Pollard give us to experience about reading and thinking as such?
The Continental tradition has always placed great emphasis on the Logos. The Gift of Logos: Essays in Continental Philosophy celebrates and situates this emphasis in the genre of the gift and its giving. The process of receiving, or giving, of the gift overcomes the existential alienation and separation that is so present in the human condition. To ritualize giving and its gifting is to provide a syntax of solidarity that bespeaks our desire for cohesion and need for identities beyond our (...) own. To give a gift is to befriend. The gift of logos is more than a gift from the gods and goddesses; it is an act of giving for those friends of wisdom for those philosophers who give to each other and to their worlds and receive the blessings of logos from each other. The increasing objectification of human being has mobilized a regressive narcissism that shows the ego's reassertion in the light of the meaningless quantifying forces from without. By not reflecting deeply enough upon its conditions of existence in the modern world and on its orginary moments, philosophy itself has not been immune from this besotted sense of self. Although not an invective against thinking nor against modern and contemporary philosophy's genuine advances, The Gift of Logos portends to shed the delusion that theoretical re-description is somehow the same as transforming who we are. This transformation is our greatest gift to each other. To give it voice is the gift of Logos and what this collection of essays commemorates. (shrink)
Continental philosophy, beginning with Kant, has found itself exposed to the abyss of reason. This crisis makes it a more ready dialogue partner with some of the Zen tradition. I explore this opening by bringing Eihei Dōgen into an encounter with Continental thought, broadly construed. Rather than demonstrate how Dōgen already fits within Continental thought or re-engineering the latter so that he can fit, I argue that this encounter, already precipitated by Continental philosophy’s own acknowledgement of the felix culpa of (...) Western philosophy’s otherwise indefensible overreach, transforms and expands the manners in which thinking counts as philosophical. This is no less than to recover a sense of philosophy as genetic and creative, rather than a shopworn tool kit of universal insights. (shrink)
As is well known, the renowned Hegel scholar, Franz Rosenzweig, had a dramatic break with Hegel in particular and German Idealism more broadly, as strikingly evidenced in his magnum opus, The Star of Redemption. In the third or 1815 draft of Die Weltalter, Schelling writes that while “all thinking must begin the dialectic, it cannot end in the dialectic.” Schelling continued his turn toward what he called “positive philosophy,” which emerges “toto caelo” differently than from the “universality” and “indeterminacy” of (...) negative thought. What is this new mode of thought, born—both for Schelling and for his unexpected admirer Rosenzweig—from the limitations of negative thought? How does one characterize this rupture within Idealism itself? (shrink)
John McCumber’s new book takes up the current professional crisis in the discipline of philosophy and traces it back to a series of fateful philosophical distinctions that have resulted in an oppressively substantialist disposition and, in so doing, have rendered philosophy pernicious. When humankind thrives, philosophy wanes, but when philosophy thrives, humankind generally wanes. In reviewing McCumber’s timely and important work, I also reflect on philosophy’s current crisis of relevance, both in itself and with reference to this journal.
This essay is devoted to an examination of the relationship between truth and laughter in the works of Nietzsche. My central text shall be the much malignedbook four of Zarathustra, with special attention paid to the braying of the ass. Laughter has been traditionally considered irrelevent to serious philosophical content and, at best, a stylistic quirk. I argue that this stems from a basic predjudice that is constitutive of a large part of the Western tradition, namely, the confusion of working (...) hard with taking oneself seriously. I then analyze laughter in Nietzsche’s works as the voice of truth itself. Laughter is the affirmation of a register of truth as the other beginning that has been lost in every thing that begins. Such an analysis involves a discussion of the nature of both truth and laughter. In so doing, I also distinguish Nietzschean laughter from three representative and seminal accounts of laughter provided by Hobbes, Bergson, and Kant. (shrink)
This essay is devoted to an examination of the relationship between truth and laughter in the works of Nietzsche. My central text shall be the much malignedbook four of Zarathustra, with special attention paid to the braying of the ass. Laughter has been traditionally considered irrelevent to serious philosophical content and, at best, a stylistic quirk. I argue that this stems from a basic predjudice that is constitutive of a large part of the Western tradition, namely, the confusion of working (...) hard (a sine qua non for philosophy) with taking oneself seriously. I then analyze laughter in Nietzsche’s works as the voice of truth itself. Laughter is the affirmation of a register of truth as the other beginning that has been lost in every thing that begins. Such an analysis involves a discussion of the nature of both truth and laughter. In so doing, I also distinguish Nietzschean laughter from three representative and seminal accounts of laughter provided by Hobbes, Bergson, and Kant. (shrink)
In this essay I hope to make some new contributions to the philosophical opening occasioned by John Sallis’ articulation of an “elementology” more broadly and by his turn to Guo Xi’s exquisite Song Dynasty shan-shui scroll painting, Early Spring more particularly. I do so by bringing the remarkable writings by the American poet and thinker Gary Snyder, especially in relationship to his reading of the great Kamakura Zen Master Eihei Dōgen, directly into the fray of contemporary Continental discourses on the (...) elemental and the ecological. At the heart of this project is Snyder’s development of Dōgen’s elemental discourse of “mountains, rivers, and the great earth.” Like Sallis’ own efforts to recast language into a more elemental discourse, this essay will also focus on the manners of speaking specific to the philosophical and poetic self-presentation of the elements, including the relationship between the philosophical and the artistic as such. (shrink)