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Conrad’s Narrative Voice

Stylistic Aspects of His Fiction

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Werner Senn

Werner Senn’s Conrad’s Narrative Voice draws on the methodology of linguistic stylistics and the analysis of narrative discourse to discuss Joseph Conrad’s perception of the role and the limitations of language. Tracing recurrent linguistic patterns allows Senn to demonstrate that Conrad’s view of the radical indeterminacy of the world is conveyed on the most basic levels of the author’s (often criticised) verbal style but permeates his work at all levels of the narrative. Detailed stylistic analysis also reveals the importance, to Conrad, of the spoken word, of oral communication. Senn argues that the narrators’ compulsive efforts to make their readers see and understand reflect Conrad’s ethics of human solidarity in a world he depicts as hostile, enigmatic and often senseless.

Storing, Archiving, Organizing

The Changing Dynamics of Scholarly Information Management in Post-Reformation Zurich

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Anja-Silvia Goeing

Storing, Archiving, Organizing: The Changing Dynamics of Scholarly Information Management in Post-Reformation Zurich is a study of the Lectorium at the Zurich Grossmünster, the earliest of post-Reformation Swiss academies, initiated by the church reformer Huldrych Zwingli in 1523. This institution of higher education was planned in the wake of humanism and according to the demands of the reforming church. Scrutinizing the institutional archival records, Anja-Silvia Goeing shows how the lectorium’s teachers used practices of storing, archiving, and organizing to create an elaborate administrative structure to deal with students and to identify their own didactic and disciplinary methods. She finds techniques developing that we today would consider important to understand the history of information management and knowledge transfer.

The Dark Side of Knowledge

Histories of Ignorance, 1400 to 1800

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Cornel Zwierlein

How can one study the absence of knowledge, the voids, the conscious and unconscious unknowns through history? Investigations into late medieval and early modern practices of measuring, of risk calculation, of ignorance within financial administrations, of conceiving the docta ignorantia as well as the silence of the illiterate are combined with contributions regarding knowledge gaps within identification procedures and political decision-making, with the emergence of consciously delimited blanks on geographical maps, with ignorance as a factor embedded in iconographic programs, in translation processes and the semantic potentials of reading. Based on thorough archival analysis, these selected contributions from conferences at Harvard and Paris are tightly framed by new theoretical elaborations that have implications beyond these cases and epochal focus.

Contributors: Giovanni Ceccarelli, Taylor Cowdery, Lucile Haguet, John T. Hamilton, Lucian Hölscher, Moritz Isenmann, Adam J. Kosto, Marie-Laure Legay, Andrew McKenzie-McHarg, Fabrice Micallef, William T. O´Reilly, Eleonora Rohland, Mathias Schmoeckel, Daniel L. Smail, Govind P. Sreenivasan, and Cornel Zwierlein.

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Christoph Senft

This study offers a comprehensive overview of Indian writing in English in the 21st century. Through ten exemplary analyses in which canonical authors stand next to less well-known and diasporic ones Christoph Senft provides deep insights into India’s complex literary world and develops an argumentative framework in which narrative texts are interpreted as transmodern re-readings of history, historicity and memory. Reconciling different postmodern and postcolonial theoretical approaches to the interpretation and construction of literature and history, Senft substitutes traditional, Eurocentric and universalistic views on past and present by decolonial and pluralistic practices. He thus helps to better understand the entanglements of colonial politics and cultural production, not only on the subcontinent.

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Wouter Goris

Transcendental unity is a figure of thought of the Latin Middle Ages, which is indebted to Avicenna’s renewal of metaphysics and which is wrongly attributed to Aristotle. A specific interpretation of the demonstrable attribute determines the metaphysical reflection on ‘the one’ and turns it into a transcendental attribute of being. Notwithstanding the variety of epistemic constellations, however, this metaphysical relationship of being and unity always turns out to be a fundamental state of affairs. Transcendental unity identifies as a problem constellation, the principles of which are still effective in the critique of scholastic metaphysics in classical German philosophy.

Pietro Pomponazzis Erkenntnistheorie

Naturalisierung des menschlichen Geistes im Spätaristotelismus

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Paolo Rubini

The Renaissance philosopher Pietro Pomponazzi (1462-1525) is mostly known for denying the human mind’s immateriality (and immortality) in accordance with his radical understanding of Aristotelianism. Pomponazzis Erkenntnistheorie attempts to reconstruct his theory of cognition. The author, Paolo Rubini, focuses on Pomponazzi’s scattered views about the mind’s ontological status and cognitive capacities, puts them into the context of Aristotelian-Scholastic psychology, and interprets them by reference to Pomponazzi’s ‘naturalistic’ approach to the human soul. Particular interest is devoted to the role of representations in cognitive acts, the functional link between intellect and imagination, and the process of abstraction. The study is based on Pomponazzi’s published writings about immortality as well as on unpublished records of his lectures about Aristotle’s De anima.

'Anonymus Aurelianensis III' in Aristotelis Analytica priora

Critical edition, Introduction, Notes, and Indexes

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Christina Thomsen Thörnqvist

This is the first critical edition of the earliest known Latin commentary on Aristotle’s Prior Analytics, the Anonymus Aurelianensis III. In addition to the critical text, Christina Thomsen Thörnqvist’s edition contains a comparative analysis of the anonymous commentary and the extant Greek commentaries as well as a full comparison between Boethius’ translation and the translation used by the commentator. The edition provides a solid foundation for further study on the earliest medieval exegesis on the Prior Analytics and is an essential resource for any scholar who wants to learn more about the development of logic in general and the medieval reception of Aristotelian syllogistic in particular.

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Thomas M. Ward

In John Duns Scotus on Parts, Wholes, and Hylomorphism, Thomas M. Ward examines Scotus's arguments for his distinctive version of hylomorphism, the view that at least some material objects are composites of matter and form. It considers Scotus's reasons for adopting hylomorphism, and his accounts of how matter and form compose a substance, how extended parts, such as the organs of an organism, compose a substance, and how other sorts of things, such as the four chemical elements (earth, air, fire, and water) and all the things in the world, fail to compose a substance. It highlights the extent to which Scotus draws on his metaphysics of essential order to explain why some things can compose substance and why others cannot. Throughout the book, contemporary versions of hylomorphism are discussed in ways that both illumine Scotus's own views and suggest ways to advance contemporary debates.

Ockham's Assumption of Mental Speech

Thinking in a World of Particulars

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Sonja Schierbaum

In Ockham’s Assumption of Mental Speech: Thinking in a World of Particulars, Sonja Schierbaum advances a detailed philosophical reconstruction of William Ockham’s (1287-1349) conception of mental speech. Ockham’s conception provides a rich account of cognition and semantics that binds together various philosophical issues and forms a point of departure for many later and even contemporary debates. The book analyses the role of mental speech for the semantics and the use of linguistic expressions as well as its function within Ockham’s cognitive theory and epistemology. Carefully balancing Ockham’s position against contemporary appropriations in the light of Fodor’s LOTH, it allows us to understand better Ockham’s view on human thought and its relation to language.

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Temenuga Trifonova

The Image in French Philosophy challenges dominant interpretations of Bergson, Sartre, Lyotard, Baudrillard and Deleuze by arguing that their philosophy was not a critique but a revival of metaphysics as a thinking pertaining to impersonal forces and distinguished by an aversion to subjectivity and an aversion of the philosophical gaze away from the discourse of vision, and thus away from the image. Insofar as the image was part of the discourse of subjectivity/representation, getting rid of the subject involved smuggling the concept of the image out of the discourse of subjectivity/representation into a newly revived and ethically flavored metaphysical discourse—a metaphysics of immanence, which was more interested in consciousness rather than subjectivity, in the inhuman rather than the human, in the virtual rather than the real, in Time rather than temporalization, in Memory rather than memory-images, in Imagination rather than images, in sum, in impersonal forces, de-personalizing experiences, states of dis-embodiment characterized by the breaking down of sensory-motor schemata (Bergson’s pure memory, Sartre’s image-consciousness, Deleuze’s time-image) or, more generally, in that which remains beyond representation i.e. beyond subjectivity (Lyotard’s sublime, Baudrillard’s fatal object). The book would be of interest to scholars and students of philosophy, aesthetics, and film theory.