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Perspectives on Evil

From Banality to Genocide

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Edited by Kanta Dihal

The question of evil is one of the oldest and most intensely studied topics in intellectual history. In fiction, legend and mythology the boundary between good and evil is often depicted as clear-cut, at least to the reader or listener, who is supposed to understand such tales as lessons and warnings. Evil is something that must be avoided by the hero in some cases and vanquished in others; it is either the exact opposite of the expected good behaviour, or its complete absence. Even so, for the characters in these didactic fictions, it turns out to be deceptively easy to fall to the infernal, ‘dark’ side. This volume draws on the expertise of an interdisciplinary group of contributors to chart events and deeds of an ‘evil’ nature that have been lived in the (recent) past and have become part of history, from individual to institutionalised evil.

The Veiled God

Friedrich Schleiermacher’s Theology of Finitude

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Ruth Jackson Ravenscroft

In The Veiled God, Ruth Jackson Ravenscroft offers a detailed portrait of Friedrich Schleiermacher’s early life, ethics, and theology in its historical and social context. She also critically reflects on the enduring relevance of his work for the study of religion.
The book analyses major texts from Schleiermacher’s early work. It argues that his experiments with literary form convey his understanding that human knowledge is inherently social, and that religion is thoroughly linguistic and historical. The book contends that by making finitude (and not freedom) a universal aspect to human life, Schleiermacher offers rich conceptual resources for considering what it means to be human in this world, both in relations of difference to others, and in relation to the infinite.

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Paul F. Grendler

Paul F. Grendler, noted historian of European education, surveys Jesuit schools and universities throughout Europe from the first school founded in 1548 to the suppression of the Society of Jesus in 1773. The Jesuits were noted educators who founded and operated an international network of schools and universities that enrolled students from the age of ten through doctoral studies. The essay analyzes the organization, curriculum, pedagogy, culture, financing, relations with civil authorities, enrollments, and social composition of students in Jesuit pre-university schools. Grendler then explains Jesuit universities. The Jesuits governed and did all the teaching in small collegiate universities. In large civic-Jesuit universities the Jesuits taught the humanities, philosophy, and theology, while lay professors taught law and medicine. The article provides examples ranging from the first Jesuit school in Messina, Sicily, to universities across Europe. It features a complete list of Jesuit schools in France.

Landscapes, Sources and Intellectual Projects of the West African Past

Essays in Honour of Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias

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Edited by Toby Green and Benedetta Rossi

Landscapes, Sources and Intellectual Projects of the West African Past offers a comprehensive assessment of new directions in the historiography of West Africa. With twenty-four chapters by leading researchers in the study of West African history and cultures, the volume examines the main trends in multiple fields including the critical interpretation of Arabic sources; new archaeological surveys of trans-Saharan trade; the discovery of sources in Latin America relating to pan-Atlantic histories; and the continuing analysis of oral histories. The volume is dedicated to Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias, whose work inspired the intellectual reorientations discussed in its chapters and stands as the clearest formulation of the book’s central focus on the relationship between political conjunctures and the production of sources.

Contributors are: Benjamin Acloque, Karin Barber, Seydou Camara, Mamadou Diawara, Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias, François-Xavier Fauvelle, Nikolas Gestrich, Toby Green, Bruce Hall, Jan Jansen, Shamil Jeppie, Daouda Keita, Murray Last, Robin Law, Camille Lefebvre, Paul Lovejoy, Ghislaine Lydon, Carlos Magnavita, Sonja Magnavita, Kevin MacDonald, Thomas McCaskie, Ann McDougall, Daniela Moreau, Mauro Nobili, Insa Nolte, Abel-Wedoud Ould-Cheikh, Benedetta Rossi, Charles Stewart.

Machiavelliana

The Living Machiavelli in Modern Mythologies

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Michael Jackson and Damian Grace

In Machiavelliana Michael Jackson and Damian Grace offer a comprehensive study of the uses and abuses of Niccolò Machiavelli’s name in society generally and in academic fields distant from his intellectual origins. It assesses the appropriation of Machiavelli in didactic works in management, social psychology, and primatology, scholarly texts in leaderships studies, as well as novels, plays, commercial enterprises, television dramas, operas, rap music, Mach IV scales, children’s books, and more. The book audits, surveys, examines, and evaluates this Machiavelliana against wider claims about Machiavelli. It explains the origins of Machiavelli’s reputation and the spread of his fame as the foundation for the many uses and misuses of his name. They conclude by redressing the most persistent distortions of Machiavelli.

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Antonie Vos

In this volume, Antonie Vos offers a comprehensive analysis of the philosophy and theological thought of John Duns Scotus. First, a summary is given of the life and times of John Duns Scotus: his background and years in Oxford (12-80-1301), his time in Paris and Cologne (1308-1309) and his year in exile in Oxford and Cambridge (1303-1304). From there on, Scotus' Trinitarian theology and Christology are introduced. Duns not only embraced the doctrine of the Trinity, he also proved that God must be Trinitarian by connecting the first Person with knowledge to the second One with will. Further insights of Scotus' are discussed, such as the theory of Creation, ethics, justification and predestination, and the sacraments. The volume concludes with an overview of historical dilemmas in Scotus' theological thought.




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Edited by Charles Padrón and Krzysztof Piotr Skowroński

With The Life of Reason in an Age of Terrorism, Charles Padrón and Kris Skowroński (editors) gather together a broad assortment of contributions that address the germaneness of George Santayana’s (1863-1952) social and political thought to the world of the early twenty-first century in general, and specifically to the phenomenon of terrorism.

The essays treat a broad range of philosophical and historical concerns: the life of reason, the philosophy of the everyday, fanaticism, liberalism, barbarism, egoism, and relativism. The essays reflect a wide range of viewpoints and perspectives, but all coalesce around discussions of how Santayana’s thought fits in with and enhances an understanding of both our challenging times, and our uncertain future.

Contributors are: Cayetano Estébanez, Matthew Caleb Flamm, Nóra Horváth, Jacquelyn Ann Kegley, Till Kinzel, Katarzyna Kremplewska, John Lachs, José Beltrán Llavador, Eduardo Mendieta, Daniel Moreno Moreno, Luka Nikolic, Charles Padrón, Giuseppe Patella, Daniel Pinkas, Herman Saatkamp, Jr., Matteo Santarelli, Krzysztof Piotr Skowroński and Andrés Tutor.

Subjects Barbarian, Monstrous, and Wild

Encounters in the Arts and Contemporary Politics

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Edited by Maria Boletsi and Tyler Sage

Subjects Barbarian, Monstrous, and Wild responds to a contemporary political climate in which historically invested figures of otherness—barbarians, savages, monsters—have become common discursive currency. Through questionable historical comparisons, politicians and journalists evoke barbaric or primitive forces threatening civilization in order to exacerbate the fear of others, diagnose civilizational decline, or feed nostalgic restorative projects. These evocations often demand that forms of oppression, discrimination, and violence be continued or renewed.
In this context, the collected essays explore the dispossessing effects of these figures but also their capacities for reimagining subjectivity, agency, and resistance to contemporary forms of power. Emphasizing intersections of the aesthetic and the political, these essays read canonical works alongside contemporary literature, film, art, music, and protest cultures. They interrogate the violent histories but also the subversive potentials of figures barbarous, monstrous, or wild, while illustrating the risks in affirmative resignifications or new mobilizations.

Contributors: Sophie van den Bergh, Maria Boletsi, Siebe Bluijs, Giulia Champion, Cui Chen, Tom Curran, Andries Hiskes, Tyler Sage, Cansu Soyupak, Ruby de Vos, Mareen Will

Shifts of Power

Modern Chinese Thought and Society

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Zhitian Luo

In Shifts of Power: Modern Chinese Thought and Society, Luo Zhitian brings together nine essays to explore the causes and consequences of various shifts of power in modern Chinese society, including the shift from scholars to intellectuals, from the traditional state to the modern state, and from the people to society. Adopting a microhistorical approach, Luo situates these shifts at the intersection of social change and intellectual evolution in the midst of modern China’s culture wars with the West. Those culture wars produced new problems for China, but also provided some new intellectual resources as Chinese scholars and intellectuals grappled with the collisions and convergences of old and new in late Qing and early Republican China.

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Edited by Benjamin A. Elman and Chao-Hui Jenny Liu

The “Global” and the “Local” in Early Modern and Modern East Asia presents a unique set of historical perspectives by scholars from two
important universities in the East Asian region—The University of Tokyo (Tōdai) and Fudan University, along with East Asian Studies scholars from Princeton University. Two of the essays address the international leanings in the histories of their respective departments in Todai and Fudan. The rest of the essays showcase how such thinking about the global and local histories have borne fruit, as the scholars of the three institutions contributed essays, arguing about the philosophies, methodologies, and/or perspectives of global history and how it relates to local stories. Authors include Benjamin Elman, Haneda Masashi, and Ge Zhaoguang.