Introduction : time, film, and the ethical vision of Emmanuel Levinas. American transcendence : Levinas and a short history of an American idea in film -- Frank Capra and James Stewart : time, transcendence, and the other -- The changing face of American redemption : Henry Fonda, Marilyn Monroe, Paul Newman, and Denzel Washington -- Sex, art, and Oedipus : The unbearable lightness of being -- Fellini and La dolce vita : documentary, decadence, and desire -- Antonioni and L'avventura : (...) transcendence, the body, and the feminine. (shrink)
This essay attempts to clarify the distinction between property and sovereignty, and to bring out the importance of that distinction to a liberal nationalism. Beginning with common intuitions about what distinguishes our rights to our possessions from the state's rightful governance over us, it proceeds to explore some historical sources of these intuitions, and the importance of a sharp distinction between ownership and governance to the rise of liberalism. From here, the essay moves into an exploration of group ownership, and (...) the ways in which group ownership can in practice turn into an illiberal kind of sovereignty The point is to shed new light on problems that nationalist states — states purporting to represent or foster a particular group identity — characteristically face. Examples of these problems, from the Israel/Palestine conflict, are put forth in the conclusion. (shrink)
In his philosophy of ethics and time, Emmanuel Levinas highlighted the tension that exists between the "ontological adventure" of immediate experience and the "ethical adventure" of redemptive relationships-associations in which absolute responsibility engenders a transcendence of being and self. In an original commingling of philosophy and cinema study, Sam B. Girgus applies Levinas's ethics to a variety of international films. His efforts point to a transnational pattern he terms the "cinema of redemption" that portrays the struggle to connect to others (...) in redeeming ways. Girgus not only reveals the power of these films to articulate the crisis between ontological identity and ethical subjectivity. He also locates time and ethics within the structure and content of film itself. Drawing on the work of Luce Irigaray, Tina Chanter, Kelly Oliver, and Ewa Ziarek, Girgus reconsiders Levinas and his relationship to film, engaging with a feminist focus on the sexualized female body. Girgus offers fresh readings of films from several decades and cultures, including Frank Capra's _Mr. Smith Goes to Washington_, Federico Fellini's _La dolce vita_, Michelangelo Antonioni's _L'avventura_, John Huston's _The Misfits_, and Philip Kaufman's _The Unbearable Lightness of Being_. (shrink)
This book is an innovative attempt by a leading film theorist to locate cinema--from the earliest experiments, via the work of Federico Fellini, Alfred Hitchcock, Roberto Rossellini, Orson Welles and many others, to contemporary European art cinema-- alongside philosophy, painting, geography and travel in terms of a history of modernism. The focal point of Promised Lands is a vast collection of geographical and ethnographic films and photographs made around the world, The Archives of the Planet . Based in Paris, the (...) collection was amassed by a French banker, Albert Kahn, in the 1900s, and for a time it was run by the Professor of Geography at the College de France, Jean Brunhes. The collection is, for Sam Rohdie, an astonishing instance of French modernism comparable to the philosophical work of Henri Bergson. Promised Lands weaves a narrative of speculative and analytical fragments around the rich resources of the collection. Each chapter is named for a real or imaginary place and the sum is a study that, in its interdisciplinary range and its attempt to integrate personal and cultural history, redefines modernism as a shifting geography of artforms, desires, and practices of understanding. (shrink)
This study contends that folly is of fundamental importance to the implicit philosophical vision of Shakespeare’s drama. The discourse of folly’s wordplay, jubilant ironies, and vertiginous paradoxes furnish Shakespeare with a way of understanding that lays bare the hypocrisies and absurdities of the serious world. Like Erasmus, More, and Montaigne before him, Shakespeare employs folly as a mode of understanding that does not arrogantly insist upon the veracity of its own claims – a fool’s truth, after all, is spoken by (...) a fool. Yet, as this study demonstrates, Shakespearean folly is not the sole preserve of professional jesters and garrulous clowns, for it is also apparent on a thematic, conceptual, and formal level in virtually all of his plays. Examining canonical histories, comedies, and tragedies, this study is the first to either contextualize Shakespearean folly within European humanist thought, or to argue that Shakespeare’s philosophy of folly is part of a subterranean strand of Western philosophy, which itself reflects upon the folly of the wise. This strand runs from the philosopher-fool Socrates through to Montaigne and on to Nietzsche, but finds its most sustained expression in the Critical Theory of the mid to late twentieth-century, when the self-destructive potential latent in rationality became an historical reality. This book makes a substantial contribution to the fields of Shakespeare, Renaissance humanism, Critical Theory, and Literature and Philosophy. It illustrates, moreover, how rediscovering the philosophical potential of folly may enable us to resist the growing dominance of instrumental thought in the cultural sphere. (shrink)
A BELIEF IN FREE WILL touches nearly everything that human beings value. It is difficult to think about law, politics, religion, public policy, intimate relationships, morality—as well as feelings of remorse or personal achievement—without first imagining that every person is the true source of his or her thoughts and actions. And yet the facts tell us that free will is an illusion. In this enlightening book, Sam Harris argues that this truth about the human mind does not undermine morality or (...) diminish the importance of social and political freedom, but it can and should change the way we think about some of the most important questions in life. (shrink)
Neither art criticism nor a scholar’s monograph on an artist, Jean-François Lyotard’s Sam Francis: Lesson of Darkness: ‘like the paintings of a blind man’ is a reflection that engages both the painter and 43 of his works into a conversation alternating painting and aphoristic writing. Their order follows neither the chronology of the works nor a linear argument in the prose. And yet, the work generates the strongest feeling of there being a continuity in this peculiar dialogue of pictures and (...) poeticism, a continuity not clearly presented by logic, but one concerning what remains unpresented in presentation. The conversation is revelatory of their shared concerns with the energetic force of absence and is fascinating. (shrink)
This volume addresses the impact of human movement on the aesthetic practices that make up the fabric of culture. The essays explore the ways in which cultural activities—ranging from the habitual gestures of the body to the production of specific artworks—register the impact of migration, from the forced transportation of slaves to the New World and of Jews to the death camps to the economic migration of peoples between the West and its erstwhile colonies; from the internal and external exile (...) of Palestinians to the free movement of cosmopolitan intellectuals. Rather than focusing exclusively on art produced by those identified as migrant subjects, this collection opens up the question of how aesthetics itself migrates, transforming not only its own practices and traditions, but also the very nature of our being in the world, as subjects producing, as well as produced by, the cultures in which we live. The transformative potential of cultures on the move is both affirmed and critiqued throughout the collection, as part of an exploration of the ways in which globalisation implicates us ever more tightly in the unequal relations of production that characterise late modernity. This collection brings academic scholars from a variety of disciplines into conversation with practising visual and verbal artists; indeed, many of the essays break down the distinction between artist and academic, suggesting a dynamic interchange between critical reflection and creativity. (shrink)
This collection of Charles Mills’ writings includes his famous “White Ignorance” and “Kant’s Untermenschen,” along with his most extensive engagement with the writings of John Rawls. Fleischacker’s review endorses and expands Mills’ critique of what Rawls calls “ideal theory,” while disputing Mills’ characterization of Kant’s moral theory as intrinsically racist. It proposes a different way of understanding how Kant and other philosophers have been able to maintain egalitarian principles while still being racist.
I urge here that Kant’s essay “What is Enlightenment?” be read in the context of debates at the time over the public critique of religion, and together with elements of his other writings, especially a short piece on orientation in thinking that he wrote two years later. After laying out the main themes of the essay in some detail, I argue that, read in context, Kant’s call to “think for ourselves” is not meant to rule out a legitimate role for (...) relying on the testimony of others, that it is directed instead against a kind of blind religious faith, in which one either refuses to question one’s clerical authorities or relies on a mystical intuition that cannot be assessed by reason. Both of these ways of abandoning reason can be fended off if we always submit our private thoughts to the test of public scrutiny: which is why enlightenment, for Kant, requires _both_ free thinking, by each individual for him or herself, _and_ a realm of free public expression in which individuals can discuss the results of their thinking. (shrink)
Juxtaposing theological inquiry with the philosophical movement of new materialism, Sam Mickey reflects on questions of human embodiment, nonhuman agency, technological innovation, and possible futures for humankind. New Materialism and Theology opens several pathways for thinking about what really matters.
The curriculum design, faculty characteristics, and experience of implementing masters' level international research ethics training programs supported by the Fogarty International Center was investigated. Multiple pedagogical approaches were employed to adapt to the learning needs of the trainees. While no generally agreed set of core competencies exists for advanced research ethics training, more than 75% of the curricula examined included international issues in research ethics, responsible conduct of research, human rights, philosophical foundations of research ethics, and research regulation and ethical (...) review process. Common skills taught included critical thinking, research methodology and statistics, writing, and presentation proficiency. Curricula also addressed the cultural, social, and religious context of the trainees related to research ethics. Programs surveyed noted trainee interest in Western concepts of research ethics and the value of the transnational exchange of ideas. Similar faculty expertise profiles existed in all programs. Approximately 40% of faculty were female. Collaboration between faculty from low- and middleincome countries (LMICs) and high-income countries (HICs) occurred in most programs and at least 50% of HIC faculty had previous LMIC experience. This paper is part of a collection of papers analyzing the Fogarty International Research Ethics Education and Curriculum Development program. (shrink)
_Martin Buber: His Intellectual and Scholarly Legacy_ is a unique volume on one of the most pivotal figures of modern Jewish thought. These essays by leading scholars explore Buber’s influential dialogues with Christianity, politics, philosophy, and Jewish sources.
The UK government intends to regulate mental health care professions by enforcing title protection of the terms “counsellor” and “psychotherapist.” The operational definition they have adopted for “counsellor”— a specialist in psychological therapy—is not recorded in any authoritative source as an exclusive,predominant or fundamental meaning of the term. In fact, there is no evidence that it is an independent sense in its own right, unlike the professional titles “psychotherapist,” “doctor,” and “psychologist.”It is only in recent decades that the term “counsellor” (...) has been interpreted as the title of a psychological profession. It was first used within the context of psychological therapy in 1940 by Carl Rogers to denote a therapist directing a non-programmatic “client-centred” session, and was eventually absorbedinto the occupational dialect of psychology as a descriptor, but did not constitute the title of a separate profession. It also continued to have applications outside the context of psychotherapy. However, various linguistic tropes have contributed to a widespread misconception that it is primarily a professional title for psychological therapists who eschew programmatic therapies. The term was progressively adopted by non-therapists who offered vocational talking-and-listening services.A careful semantic analysis reveals that the PLG’s interpretation of the term rests on a confusion of sense and reference, a widespread but erroneous assumption about the role of counsellors, a failure to acknowledge the limits of an occupational dialect, biased categorical heuristics, and ignorance of modifyingterms. There is a more constructive approach, which accords with the observation that counselling is an activity rather than a profession and is more faithful to the original semantics of the key terms. (shrink)
Abelian Logic is a paraconsistent logic discovered independently by Meyer and Slaney  and Casari . This logic is also referred to as Abelian Group Logic (AGL)  since its set of theorems is sound and complete with respect to the class of Abelian groups. In this paper we investigate the pure implication fragment A→ of Abelian logic. This is an extension of the implication fragment of linear logic, BCI. A Hilbert style axiomatic system for A→ can obtained by adding (...) the axiom A (dubbed the ‘axiom of relativity’ by Meyer and Slaney) to BCI, as follows: B (α → β) → ((γ → α) → (γ → β)) C (α → (β → γ)) → ((β → (α → γ)) I α → α A ((α → β) → β) → α MP α, α → β ⇒ β. (shrink)
This paper continues a conversation about Wittgenstein’s picture of language and meaning and its potential applications for educational theorising. It takes the form of a response to Wolff-Michael Roth’s earlier paper “Heeding Wittgenstein on “understanding” and “meaning”: A pragmatist and concrete human psychological approach in/for education,” in which Roth problematizes the use of the terms “understanding” and “meaning” in education discourse and proposes their abandonment. Whilst we agree with Roth about a series of central points, at the same time we (...) maintain that he has taken his argument in directions antithetical to our reading of Wittgenstein’s work. We offer four points of departure, exploring themes of: appropriate questioning; eliminativism; language-games and grammar; and productivity, explanation, and a science of learning. We conclude by discussing ways consistent with Wittgenstein’s thought to go on in thinking about education. (shrink)
Sam Kean: The disappearing spoon: and other true tales of madness, love, and the history of the world from the periodic table of the elements Content Type Journal Article Pages 77-77 DOI 10.1007/s10698-010-9101-x Authors Michael Laing, School of Pure and Applied Chemistry, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, 4041 South Africa Journal Foundations of Chemistry Online ISSN 1572-8463 Print ISSN 1386-4238 Journal Volume Volume 13 Journal Issue Volume 13, Number 1.
"This book is about the way shifting conceptions of ecology, biology and technology significantly alter what it means to write poetry about nature in a time of environmental crisis. It offers a radical re-reading of three major British poets, Ted Hughes, Derek Mahon and JH Prynne, and their aesthetic strategies for negotiating the complex feedbacks between organisms and their environments in a technological world. Their poetry not only provides ways of thinking and communicating about ecology and biology, but shows how (...) the unpredictable processes of thought and communication impact on organic life in the Anthropocene, providing a substantial challenge to aesthetics, ethics and politics" --. (shrink)
What exactly are comics? Can they be art, literature, or even pornography? How should we understand the characters, stories, and genres that shape them? Thinking about comics raises a bewildering range of questions about representation, narrative, and value. Philosophy of Comics is an introduction to these philosophical questions. In exploring the history and variety of the comics medium, Sam Cowling and Wesley D. Cray chart a path through the emerging field of the philosophy of comics. Drawing from a diverse range (...) of forms and genres and informed by case studies of classic comics such as Watchmen, Tales from the Crypt, and Fun Home, Cowling and Cray explore ethical, aesthetic, and ontological puzzles, including: -/- - What does it take to create-or destroy-a fictional character like Superman? - Can all comics be adapted into films, or are some comics impossible to adapt? - Is there really a genre of “superhero comics”? - When are comics obscene, pornographic, and why does it matter? -/- At a time of rapidly growing interest in graphic storytelling, this is an ideal introduction to the philosophy of comics and some of its most central and puzzling questions. (shrink)