This book is a critical exploration of the philosophical underpinnings and implications of Cornelius Castoriadis’ reflections on Being, society and the self. The book introduces the reader to the main concepts of Castoriadis’ work, but goes further to uncover the fundamental philosophical issues addressed by Castoriadis, and to critically examine the issues his work opens up, assessing and, where necessary, offering suggested amendments to the answers Castoriadis himself puts forward. Key conceptual problems addressed include the distinction between autonomy and heteronomy, the nature of the self and self-creation, and the nature of determination in a fundamentally indeterminate universe.
Jeff Klooger, Ph.D (2001) in Sociology/Philosophy, La Trobe University. His previous publications on Castoriadis’ work include “Interpretation And Being,” Thesis Eleven, Number 83, November 2005, pp.15-24.
“The encyclopaedic nature of Castoriadis’s oeuvre makes him a challenging thinker to summarise, however, and it is to Jeff Klooger’s immense credit that he successfully manages to do so here, ably tracing the pathways of Castoriadis’s thought and presenting them in a condensed but coherent form, choosing as his starting point Castoriadis’s theory of self-creation and pursuing its implications first for our understanding of society and history and then for our ideas about identity, the human body and psyche, the nature of Being and beings, and the meaning of meaning.....Undergraduates who’ve paid attention in class, postgraduates under a certain age, and non-academic readers of an inquisitive bent and with an enthusiasm for philosophy will find this book invaluable as a challenging, provocative, and genuinely enjoyable introduction to a thinker whose ideas remain extraordinarily relevant and useful. Before engaging directly with Castoriadis’s own works, which can be intimidating in their intensity and vocabulary, students would do well to read Klooger’s introductory text.”
John Green, Irish Left Review
October 12th, 2009
Those interested in French/Continental and post-Marxist philosophy and social theory; social scientists and philosophers interested in fundamental questions of ontology and epistemology, whether already familiar with Castoriadis' ideas or not.