Critical Theory After Habermas

Encounters and Departures


The essays in this book engage with the broad range of Jürgen Habermas' work including politics and the public sphere, nature, aesthetics, the linguistic turn and the paradigm of intersubjectivity. Each essay responds to particular difficulties with Habermas' approach to these topics. Each contributor also draws on different theoretical and philosophical traditions in order to explore recent developments in critical theory.


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Biographical Note

Dieter Freundlieb is Senior Lecturer in The School of Arts, Media and Culture at Griffith University, Queensland, Australia. His research interests include theories of interpretation, critical theory, continental and analytic philosophy. He has published widely in these areas, including Dieter Henrich and Contemporary Philosophy: The Return to Subjectivity (Ashgate, 2003). Wayne Hudson is Professor of History and Philosophy in The School of Arts, Media and Culture at Griffith University, Queensland, Australia, and Director of The Asian Governance Program of the Australian Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice and Governance. His research interests include German critical theory and philosophy with particular reference to the work of Ernst Bloch, republicanism and citizenship, aesthetics, and postreligious philosophy. He has published widely in these areas, including The Reform of Utopia (Ashgate, 2003), and Civil Society and Asia (with David Schak, Ashgate, 2003). John Rundell is Senior Lecturer and Director of The Ashworth Program for Social Theory at The University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His research interests include the modernity debate, problems of human self-images in social theory, and contemporary critical theories. He has published widely in these areas and his publications include Classical Readings in Culture and Civilisation (with Stephen Mennell, Routledge, 1998) He is also an editor of the journals Critical Horizons and Thesis Eleven.

Table of contents

1. Reasoning, Language and Intersubjectivity, Dieter Freundlieb, Wayne Hudson, John Rundell 2. Between ‘Objectivism’ and ‘Contextualism’: The Normative Foundations of Social Philosophy, Maeve Cooke 3. The Pluralistic Public Sphere from an Ontological Point of View, Dmitri Ginev 4. Irreconcilable Differences? Habermas and Feminism, Pauline Johnson 5. Postreligious Aesthetics and Critical Theory, Wayne Hudson 6. Habermas, Schelling and Nature, Peter Douglas 7. The Debate About Truth: Pragmatism without Regulative Ideas, Albrecht Wellmer 8. Why Subjectivity Matters: Critical Theory and the Philosophy of the Subject, Dieter Freundlieb 9. Subjectivity as Philosophical Principle, Dieter Henrich 10. Against a priori Intersubjectivism: An Alternative Inspired by Sartre, Manfred Frank 11. The Moral Imaginary of Discourse Ethics, Kenneth MacKendrick 12. Imaginary Turns in Critical Theory: Imagining Subjects in Tension, John Rundell