Read The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity: Twelve Lectures by Jürgen Habermas Frederick G. Lawrence Online


"Destined to be the most widely discussed intervention into the increasingly heated controversy over the apparent transition from modernity to postmodernity, Habermas's lastest major effort is certain to raise the level of the debate several notches." -- Martin Jay These lectures constitute Jü rgen Habermas's response to the challenge posed by the radical critique of reaso"Destined to be the most widely discussed intervention into the increasingly heated controversy over the apparent transition from modernity to postmodernity, Habermas's lastest major effort is certain to raise the level of the debate several notches." -- Martin Jay These lectures constitute Jü rgen Habermas's response to the challenge posed by the radical critique of reason in contemporary French poststructuralism. In tracing the historical turnings that led to our current situation, Habermas tests his ideas about the appropriate form of a postmodern discourse through dialogues with a broad range of past and present critics and theorists. The lectures on Georges Bataille, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, and Cornelius Castoriadis are of particular note, since they are the first fruits of the recent cross-fertilization between French and German thought....

Title : The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity: Twelve Lectures
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ISBN : 9780262581028
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 450 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity: Twelve Lectures Reviews

  • Eric
    2019-04-14 14:03

    The publisher's description of the book is inaccurate and does the book a disservice. This is not a critique of French philosophy, but a critique of the "philosophy of the subject" so en vogue and monolithic in French philosophy. Having said that, it originates in German philosophy, namely Nietzsche and Adorno who also come in from a critique from Habermas. Philosophy, he believes, has been led away from demonstrable conclusions into a morass of reflexive and reductionist rhetoric that ill serves the unprivileged classes from which it draws its raison d'être. Habermas wants to take the philosophical narrative down a different path from Hegel.Whether his case for communicative action is the best solution to the problems of (now not quite) contemporary modernist philosophy, it's a fascinating critique of philosophical texts that have either been enthusiastically accepted or rejected and ridiculed outright out of discomfort or refusal to engage the text directly. Some will reject the narrative that Habermas constructs in his genealogy of the philosophy of the subject, but his contribution to the discussion is invaluable. A couple of decades later, the zeitgeist seems to have largely to have shrugged at this literate attempt at debate (Derrida excepted). It's well worth a close read.

  • Rowan Tepper
    2019-04-14 13:56

    While his commitment to the Enlightenment project is indeed laudable, Habermas refuses to acknowledge the fact that Modernity's characteristic faith in the ineluctable progress of reason has been decisively refuted. Already, in his Theses on the Philosophy of History, Walter Benjamin exposed the ideology of Progress for what it had become: bankrupt and complicit with the ascendance of fascism. The horrors of the second World War were not the result of a regression into barbarism, but were rather the culmination and apotheosis of instrumental reason: genocide was committed systematically and efficiently by functionaries and technocrats (see: Eichmann, Adolf). Likewise, Hiroshima and the subsequent nuclear arms race are the irrational culmination of the progress of Reason: the potential self-annihilation of all life on earth, of reason itself. The project of Modernity ended with the horrors of Auschwitz and Hiroshima.This is not, however, to affirm the premature proclamations of "postmodernity" and "postmodernism" (Lyotard, Baudrillard, Jameson, etc). With regard to this, Habermas is rightly critical - but for the wrong reasons. The epoch into which the world has entered is only POST-modern: it is a period of transition, or one still wracked with growing pains. Whatever the meaning of our age may be, we must await its maturation to recognize it for what it is.Nevertheless, this is not by any means to dismiss or denigrate Habermas' work, reactionary though his thought may well be. His hyper-critical and rather catty attitude toward his colleagues and contemporaries does rub me the wrong way.

  • Pinkyivan
    2019-04-19 07:45

    Unreadable marxist drivel

  • FotisK
    2019-04-14 09:46

    Κυκλοφόρησε στα Ελληνικά, ως "Ο φιλοσοφικός λόγος της νεωτερικότητας", εκδόσεις Αλεξάνδρεια

  • Matt
    2019-04-11 14:50

    One of those books I read in college which is marked up, well-thumbed, and I probably wrote a "B" paper on it ten years ago but I really only remember maybe a sentence's worth- if that- at this point.

  • Jimena
    2019-03-21 11:07

    El tema me gusta, sin embargo detesto a los filósofos que escriben en forma laberíntica, es decir, ellos ponen palabras tras palabras y tu intentas dilucidar que cojones han querido decir para que después de 400 hojas te des cuenta que podría haberse explicado en tan sólo 28.

  • Jamey
    2019-04-05 15:10

    I vaguely remember liking this around 1998, but I cannot remember a god damn thing about it, which means that I am old (39) and maybe that this is not the single greatest book in the world. Got any soup?

  • Zoonanism
    2019-04-06 15:46

    Painful prose, nice critique of Heidegger, Foucault and Bataille, couldn't care much for the rest of it...

  • Leonardo
    2019-04-19 11:09

    Problemas de Filosofía Contemporánea. Unidad tesis central de Adorno y Horkheimer en Dialéctica de la Ilustración es que fenómenos como el fascismo son «síntomas» de la modernidad, su consecuencia necesaria (por lo que, como señaló Horkheimer en una frase memorable, aquellos que no quieren criticar el capitalismo también deberían guardar silencio sobre el fascismo), mientras que para Habermas los mismos fenómenos indican que la modernidad sigue siendo un «proyecto inacabado», que todavía no ha desarrollado todo su potencial. Esta indecibilidad es en última instancia un caso especial de la indecibilidad más general de la propia «dialéctica de la Ilustración», bien percibida por Habermas: si el «mundo administrado» es la «verdad» del proyecto de la Ilustración, entonces, ¿exactamente cómo puede ser criticado y contrarrestado por medio de la fidelidad a ese mismo proyecto? Viviendo en el Final de los Tiempos Pág.394

  • Corbin
    2019-04-14 15:44

    I read this with a particular focus for my research, and so perhaps was not as attentive as I needed to be for many sections of the book, but this was a slog. Habermas isn't particularly charitable to his subjects, and many of his own suggestions seem to be just more charitable renderings of those figures. (Not always, and it's important to show differences, but it was difficult to trust his renderings of other thinkers when some of the ones I was familiar with seemed treated poorly--particularly Derrida, Wittgenstein, and ordinary language philosophy.) Lecture XI is probably an important read for getting to know Habermas' thought, and if you want to see how he treats specific figures, you could read the relevant parts without reading the whole book. But I don't recommend reading those sections without some familiarity with the relevant subjects, because Habermas does not explain the technical terms very well, and it can be tough going unless you already know what's happening.

  • Phillip
    2019-04-06 14:49

    I only read the first essay of this book, since I am concerned with Habermas' explanation of time in modernity. I am working on a paper about the uses of time in three film versions (one modernist, one postmodernist, and one relatively pre-modernist) of King Lear, and Habermas was one of the sources in David Harvey's The Condition of Postmodernity, which is a key text. So I figured I'd go to Habermas, though he wasn't as specific about the uses and conceptions of time as I had hoped he would be (in his defense, the book isn't primarily about time, but the first essay seemed relevant. I hope to have more luck with "Modernity--An Unfinished Project."

  • Joshua
    2019-04-02 14:00

    Tough read. Nevertheless it is AMAZING. Habermas discusses (continental?) philosophy since Hegel, focusing broadly on the critique of modernity as formulated by Nietzsche and extended through a Nietzsche-Bataille-Foucault path and a Nietzsche-Heidegger-Derrida path. I don't entirely agree with Habermas, but he is an amazing philosopher.

  • Donald Cohen
    2019-03-20 07:58

    Although I don't always agree with Habermas, his works are always challenging and insightful; so is this book. Written in his typical dense, hard-to-follow style, this book offers a treasure trove of insights on different philosophical takes on modernity.

  • Michael
    2019-04-15 13:47

    An overview of the most important philosophical trends in twentieth century continental philosophy, Habermas is judicious and critical of the philosophers and their positions.

  • Melanie Robinson
    2019-03-31 15:58

    Philosophy is apparently not my thing. Confusing! Wordy!

  • Mariela
    2019-04-03 15:09

    Una gran violación intelectual

  • Brad Baranowski
    2019-04-05 11:48

    Worth reading the first two and last three chapters for Habermas's own theory of the subject. His readings of others, however, are often unconvincing and predictable.

  • Corey
    2019-03-21 07:45

    Serious misreading of Foucault and genealogy as a method.

  • Tyler
    2019-04-06 14:58

    not jurgy's best but still good...

  • Andrew
    2019-03-27 08:10

    While I'm not big on Habermas' ideas I loved his understanding of the progression of modern philosophy.

  • William West
    2019-03-23 15:57

    I'm definitely not an Habermas guy. But I allow that he's interesting, if misguided.

  • нєνєℓ¢ανα
    2019-03-25 16:06

    A very excellent work from Jurgen Habermas...

  • Charles Rost
    2019-03-31 11:52

    Habermas offers evidence here that he is more of a politician than a philosopher. His attack on Derrida is especially weak and obviously polemical.

  • sologdin
    2019-03-19 14:10

    solitary second generation frankfurt marxist v. all of postmodernism. (view spoiler)[frankfurt marxist pwns. (hide spoiler)] duh.