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Jerry H, Gill

Words, Deeds, Bodies by Jerry H. Gill concentrates on the interrelationships between speech, accomplishing tasks, and human embodiment. Ludwig Wittgenstein, J. L. Austin, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and Michael Polanyi have all highlighted these relationships. This book examines the, as yet, unexplored connections between these authors’ philosophies of language. It focuses on the relationships between their respective key ideas: Wittgenstein’s notion of “language game,” Austin’s concept of “performative utterances,” Merleau-Ponty’s idea of “slackening the threads,” and Polanyi's understanding of “tacit knowing,” noting the similarities and differences between and amongst them.

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Edited by Esmaeil Zeiny

In The Rest Write Back: Discourse and Decolonization, Esmaeil Zeiny brings together a collection of essays that interrogate the colonial legacies, the contemporary power structure and the geopolitics of knowledge production. The scholars in this collection illustrate how the writing-back paradigm engages in a conversation and paves the way for a “dialogical and pluri-versal” world where the Rest is no longer excluded. Among the important features of this book is that it presents ways for “decoloniality” and “epistemic disobedience.” This book will be of interest to scholars and students of all Social Science and Humanities disciplines but it is particularly important for those in the disciplines of sociology, postcolonial studies, cultural studies, literature, and theory and philosophy of Social Sciences and Humanities.

Contributors include: Dustin J. Byrd, Ciarunji Chesaina, Hiba Ghanem, Mladjo Ivanovic, Masumi Hashimoto Odari, Arjuna Parakrama, JM. Persánch, Andrew Ridgeway, Rudolf J. Siebert, and Esmaeil Zeiny.

A Philosophy of the Possible

Modalities in Thought and Culture

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Mikhail Epstein

In this book, Mikhail Epstein offers a systematic theory of modalities (the actual, possible, and necessary), as applied to the discourse of philosophy in its post-Kantian and especially post-Derridean perspectives. He relies on his own experience of living in the USSR and the US, dominated respectively by imperative and possibilist modalities. Possibilism assumes that a thing or event acquires meaning only in the context of its multiple possibilities, inviting counterfactual and conditional modes of description. The author focuses on the creative potentials of possibilistic thinking and its heuristic value. The book demonstrates the range of modal approaches to society, culture, ethics, and language, and outlines potentiology as a new philosophical discipline interacting with ontology and epistemology.

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Valentina Lepri

Knowledge Transfer and the Early Modern University focuses on the teaching and cultural activities of the Akademia Zamojska, one of the most renowned universities of Central-Eastern Europe in the Early Modern Age. The Akademia Zamojska played its own part in the debate on the methodology of politics as a discipline, also offering an original contribution to the development of the concept of ‘political prudence’ which was to become so popular in the universities of Central Europe in this period. The institution embodied a largely successful attempt to knit up closer connections between the world of intellectual culture and that of political praxis.

Philosophie des Geistes im Spätmittelalter

Intellekt, Materie und Intentionalität bei Johannes Buridan

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Martin Klein

Is the human intellect material? Or can we show by appeal to its intentional operations, such as universal cognition and self-knowledge, that it is immaterial? Is there therefore a connection between intentionality and immateriality?
In Philosophie des Geistes im Spätmittelalter, Martin Klein offers a comprehensive account of John Buridan’s philosophy of mind considered in relation to his epistemology, metaphysics and natural philosophy. In light of material that has only recently been edited, Buridan is presented in the context of the late medieval debate about the nature of the human intellect and how this influences its cognitive functioning.

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Edited by Mauro Bonazzi, Angela Ulacco and Filippo Forcignanò

The volume Thinking, Knowing, Acting: Epistemology and Ethics in Plato and Ancient Platonism aims to offer a fresh perspective on the correlation between epistemology and ethics, a topic of central importance in the Platonic tradition which has not yet received the attention it deserves. The first part deals with the social, juridical premises of Plato’s philosophy, with particular regard to the relation between science and practical reason. The second part investigates the reception and development of these problems in Aristotle and the Platonic tradition. Other papers, on Solon and Galen, show that the conflict between knowledge and political action was also a central topic for the other Greek thinkers and contribute by contrast to a better evaluation of the originality of Platonism.

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Rudolf Schuessler

In The Debate on Probable Opinions in the Scholastic Tradition, Rudolf Schuessler portrays scholastic approaches to a qualified disagreement of opinions. The book outlines how scholastic regulations concerning the use of opinions changed in the early modern era, giving rise to an extensive debate on the moral and epistemological foundations of reasonable disagreements. The debate was fueled by probabilism and anti-probabilism in Catholic moral theology and thus also serves as a gateway to these doctrines. All developments are outlined in historical context, while special attention is paid to the evolution of scholastic notions of probability and their importance for the emergence of modern probability.

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Rosa Maria Calcaterra

Richard Rorty’s “neo-pragmatism” launched a powerful challenge to entrenched philosophical certainties of modernity, articulating a powerful picture of normativity as a distinctive activity of human beings. This “contingentism,” with its emphasis on indeterminacy, ambiguity, uncertainty, and chance, depicts normativity as a practical human possibility rather than a metaphysical bottleneck which we must overcome at the cost of repudiating the concrete ways we grant epistemic and ethical meaning to our activities. The book is a critical survey of Rorty’s philosophy, in light of contemporary theoretical debates around language, truth, justification, and naturalism, as well as his own resourceful attempts to renew philosophy from within by using the conceptual tools and argumentative techniques of both analytic philosophy and pragmatism.

Plato’s Timaeus and the Missing Fourth Guest

Finding the Harmony of the Spheres

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Donna M. Altimari Adler

In Plato's Timaeus and the Missing Fourth Guest, Donna M. Altimari Adler proposes a new Timaeus scale structure. She finds the harmonic cosmos in Plato's text, mathematically, regarding it as a number generator. Plato's primary number sequence, she argues, yields a matrix defining a sophisticated harmony of the spheres. She stresses the Decad as the pattern governing both human perception and the generation of all things, in the text, including the World Soul and musical scale symbolizing it. She precisely identifies Plato's "fabric" and its locus of severance and solves other thorny problems of interpretation, e.g., properly naming the sets of three and four bands, born of splitting the band of difference, and explaining their differing motions and speeds.

The School of Doubt

Skepticism, History and Politics in Cicero's Academica

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Orazio Cappello

The School of Doubt conducts a close philological and philosophical reading of Cicero’s Academica, a fragmentary work on sense-perception and Academic history written in the wake of Caesar’s victory in the civil wars (45 BCE). Focusing in turn on the author’s letters discussing the process of composition, the historiographical treatment of the Platonic tradition and the critical exploration of philosophical doubt, this volume presents Cicero as an original and sophisticated historian of philosophy and a radical figure in Western skeptical thought. Widely misconstrued as a technical treatise and a mere chronicle of the Greek debates on which it draws, the Academica here emerges as a key work in the evolution of Ciceronian philosophy and of ancient skepticism – and one that responds directly to the disintegration of Republican Rome.