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After Levinas' Humanism

PART 3 Political Responsibility for a Globalised World There is a famous passage in which Derrida describes Levinas’ style of argumentation with a lyrical image: it “proceeds with the infinite insistence of waves on a beach: return and repetition, always, of the same wave against the same shore, in which, however, as each return recapitulates itself, it also infinitely renews and enriches itself.”1 From the position of a less gifted reader that nonetheless makes every effort to engage in a thoroughly critical examination of the

The Ethics and Politics of Grammatical Subjectivity CHANTAL BAX 1 THE ETHICO-POLITICAL IMPLICATIONS OF RETHINKING SUBJECTIVITY Along with continental thinkers such as Heidegger, Foucault and Derrida, Witt- genstein can be held responsible for the radical reconceptualization of human sub- jectivity that has occupied much of philosophy since the previous century. Taking issue with the traditional or Cartesian view on the nature of man, these thinkers all argued that human being does not come in the form of an ethereal and isolated self; the

Chapter 9 Ricoeur’s contribution to a notion of political responsibility for a globalised world Having in the two previous Chapters first sharpened the contours of the im- plications of Levinas’ notion of responsibility and its political deployment and then outlined the four basic tasks for the further elaboration of a general theory of political responsibility in Levinas’ wake, it is important in a third movement to consider the possible implications of such a fourfold progres- sion in the reflection on post-Levinasian responsibility

Chapter 1 Doing justice to responsibility: The primordial political nature of Levinas’ philosophy 1 ORIENTATION: LEVINAS AS POLITICAL PHILOSOPHER Emmanuel Levinas today enjoys wide recognition as one of the most original and important thinkers of the Western philosophical tradition on the ethical. Through the changes in his manner of thought over the six decades during which he wrote, developed his central concern, namely to argue that, and show how, we are not duped by ethics, rather, it is the ethical that sets the tone for our

Chapter 7 Levinas and Max Weber on being called for politics It is well known that Max Weber’s later work, in particular the essay Politics as a vocation, plays a major role in the historical development of reflection on responsibility and notably of a prospective political notion of responsi- bility. The choice of Weber as the privileged interlocutor of Levinas on political responsibility is not justified by an idea that he would in one way or another bring the desired correctives to the defects of Levinas’ ethics. Rather, it seems

Chapter 3 The range of the political: Decolonisation as a case in point 1 FROM SITUATED THOUGHT TO GLOBAL CONSEQUENCES Levinas’ major concern is then with political events, or the threat thereof, that cause harm to the other. The origins of such events are not the ideas of social scientists or philosophers – neither those of Lévi-Strauss, nor those of Heidegger. It cannot be since – as has been shown from Levinas’ reading of Lévy-Bruhl – the mens and its ideas are brought forth and depend on a more original mentality.1 Mentality

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