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Jean-François Lyotard

Edited by Ashley Woodward (Dundee University, Melbourne School of Continental Philosophy)
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Summary Jean-François Lyotard was a French poststructuralist philosopher, best known for his highly influential formulation of the postmodern in The Postmodern Condition. Despite its popularity, however, this book is in fact one of his more minor works. Lyotard’s writings cover a large range of topics in philosophy, politics, and aesthetics, and experiment with a wide variety of styles. The majority of his work, however, is unified by a consistent view that reality consists of singular events which cannot be represented accurately by rational theory. Lyotard’s philosophy exhibits many of the major themes common to poststructuralist and postmodernist thought. He examines the limits of reason, asserts the importance of nonrational forces such as sensations and emotions, rejects the image of the human as the centralizing category, champions heterogeneity and difference, and suggests that the Enlightenment understanding of society in terms of “progress” has been made obsolete by the scientific, technological, political and cultural changes of the Twentieth Century. Lyotard deals with these common themes in a highly original way, and his work exceeds many popular conceptions of the postmodern in its depth, imagination, and rigor. His thought remains highly relevant to contemporary debates in philosophy, politics, social theory, and cultural studies, and has recently been gaining renewed attention, especially around his extensive writings on art and aesthetics.
Key works Lyotard's major philosophy books, in English translation, are Discourse, Figure (Lyotard 1971), Libidinal Economy (Lyotard 1993), and The Differend (Lyotard 1988). Most of his commentaries on artists and many of his works on aesthetics are collected in the six-volume, bi-lingual (English and French) Writings on Contemporary Art and Artists (Lyotard 2009 -).
Introductions Bill Readings, Introducing Lyotard (Readings 1991) Geoffrey Bennington, Lyotard: Writing the Event (Bennington 1988) James Williams, Lyotard: Towards a Postmodern Philosophy (Williams 1998) Simon Malpas, Jean-Francois Lyotard (Malpas 2003)Keith Crome and James Williams (eds.), The Lyotard Reader and Guide 
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  1. J. - (1998). F Lyotard (1924-1998). W obronie jego Kondycji ponowoczesnej. Principia.
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  2. Ross Abbinnett (1998). Truth and Social Science: From Hegel to Deconstruction. Sage Publications.
    The noble aim of sociologists to "tell the truth" has sometimes involved ignoble assumptions about human beings. In this major discussion of truth in the social science, Ross Abbinnett traces the debate on truth from the "objectifying powers" of Kant through more than 200 years of critique and reformulation to the unraveling of truth by Lyotard, Foucault, and Derrida. Truth and Social Science gives students an exciting and accessible guide to the main sociological treatments of truth and can also be (...)
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  3. Ross Abbinnett, The Ethics of Heterogeneity : A Speculative Critique of Jean-François Lyotard's "The Differend".
    The thesis is an attempt to develop a speculative (Hegelian) critique of the ethical and political questions raised by Jean-Francois Lyotard's book The Differend. I have argued that these questions are dependent upon the reading of Kant's three Critiques, and his political essays, which Lyotard develops in The Differend's four `notices' on Kant, and that it is this reading which opens up his concept of difference (`heterogeneity') to the possibility of a speculative critique. Chapter one comprises an examination of Lyotard's (...)
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  4. André Akoun (1999). Hommage À : Jean-François LYOTARD (1924-1998). Hermes 23:349.
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  5. Philippe Fossati Allilaire, Frédérique de Vignemont, Tiziana Zalla, Andrés Posada, Anne Louvegnez, Olivier Koenig, Nicolas Georgieff, Nicolas Franck, Arnaud DÕArgembeau & Martial Van der Linden (2006). Cédric Lemogne, Pascale Piolino, Stéphanie Friszer, Astrid Claret, Nathalie Girault, Roland Jouvent, Jean-François. Consciousness and Cognition 15:232-233.
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  6. Lilian Alweiss (1999). Jean François Lyotard, Postmodern Fables Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 19 (2):118-119.
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  7. Lilian Alweiss (1999). Jean François Lyotard, Postmodern Fables. [REVIEW] Philosophy in Review 19:118-119.
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  8. Richard Appignanesi (2003). The End of Everything Postmodernism and the Vanishing of the Human : Lyotard, Haraway, Plato, Heidegger, Habermas, Mcluhan.
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  9. Jason Arndt, Bruno G. Bara, Tim Bayne, Cristina Becchio, Cordula Becker, Derek Besner, Mark Blagrove, Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, Stephan G. Boehm & Francesca Marina Bosco (2006). Adenzato, Mauro, 64 Allilaire, Jean-François, 258 Alonso, Diego, 386 Andrade, Jackie, 1, 28. Consciousness and Cognition 15:767-768.
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  10. Natalia Avtonomova & Ghislaine Capogna-Bardet (2005). Traduction et création d'une langue conceptuelle russe. Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 195 (4):547 - 555.
    La traduction peut jouer un rôle fondamental dans la création des concepts philosophiques. C'est ce qui se passe depuis 1990 en Russie, après l'effondrement de l'idéologie soviétique. Mais le fait n'est pas radicalement nouveau. Dès l'époque de Pierre le Grand, Vassili Trediakovski travailla à créer en russe des concepts correspondant à ceux de la philosophie européenne. On rencontre un processus semblable à l'époque postnapoléonienne, ainsi qu'au début du XXe siècle (avec l'importation de la pensée des néo-kantiens, de Husserl, de Freud). (...)
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  11. Gary E. Aylesworth (2002). Lyotard, Gadamer, and the Relation Between Ethics and Aesthetics. In Hugh J. Silverman (ed.), Lyotard: Philosophy, Politics, and the Sublime. Routledge. 8--84.
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  12. Gary E. Aylesworth (2002). Richard Brons. In Hugh J. Silverman (ed.), Lyotard: Philosophy, Politics, and the Sublime. Routledge. 8--281.
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  13. A. Badiou (2003). Guarding the Morning (Philosophy of Lyotard). Filozofski Vestnik 24 (1):81-89.
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  14. Khosrow Bagheri (2008). Globalization, Information Revolution, and Their Relations to Education: Emphasizing J. F. Lyotard's View. JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL INNOVATIONS 22:145-158.
    Globalization is regarded as a process or a project or a process/project which is most rapidly developing. Globalization, in case of occurrence, will put its impacts on all dimensions of human life including knowledge and practice. Particularly, its impact on epistemology and education would be remarkable. Given that the appearance and development of informational revolution is the most important background for globalization, the first challenge of globalization relates to the nature of knowledge. According to the information revolution, the most important (...)
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  15. William Bain (1995). The Loss of Innocence: Lyotard, Foucault, and the Challenge of Postmodern Education. In Michael Peters (ed.), Education and the Postmodern Condition. Bergin & Garvey. 1--20.
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  16. Andrew Christopher Baker (1993). Witness to the Ineffable: The Ethical Sublime and Meta-Levels of Performance. An Investigation of the Sublime in William Wordsworth's "the Prelude", Examined Through the Aesthetics of Jean-Francois Lyotard. Dissertation, Northwestern University
    Sublime experience robs criticism of its object. The sublime is ineffable, indeterminate, unavailable to cognition. This is the case for performance as for literary criticism. Yet, for Lyotard, the sublime presents possibilities for aesthetic criticism to discuss ethics, which is of increasing importance to postmodern critical theory across disciplines, including performance studies, rhetorical theory and communication. ;This dissertation examines the sublime as an aesthetic category in Lyotard's philosophy, and presents the ironies, in language and in form, which develop from sublime (...)
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  17. Gary Banham (1997). The Terror of the Law: Judaism and International Institutions. Angelaki 2 (3):163 – 171.
    This article addresses Jacques Derrida's consideration of Judaism relating it to a need to understand international institutions and the notion of the universal in a new way. It also discusses Lyotard's and Hegel's accounts of Judaism.
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  18. Anne Barron (1992). Lyotard and the Problem of Justice. In Andrew E. Benjamin (ed.), Judging Lyotard. Routledge. 26--42.
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  19. Christine Battersby & Kimberly Hutchings (2008). The Sublime, Terror and Human Difference. Radical Philosophy 148:43.
    Christine Battersby is a leading thinker in the field of philosophy, gender studies and visual and literary aesthetics. In this important new work, she undertakes an exploration of the nature of the sublime, one of the most important topics in contemporary debates about modernity, politics and art. Through a compelling examination of terror, transcendence and the ‘other’ in key European philosophers and writers, Battersby articulates a radical ‘female sublime’. A central feature of The Sublime, Terror and Human Difference is its (...)
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  20. Jean Baudrillard (2004). Fragments: Conversations with François L'yvonnet. Routledge.
    Fragments presents a set of brilliantly intriguing interviews with Jean Baudrillard whose work today occupies center stage in the analysis of consumerism, terrorism, and contemporary culture. In these frank discussions with François L'Yvonnet, Baudrillard reveals for the first time in detail the thinkers who have been the dominant influences on his work during his career. Instead of examining his work as a project of intellectual accumulation, he challenges all the major interpretations of his work by suggesting he has always adopted (...)
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  21. Richard Beardsworth (2006). Modernity in French Thought: Excess in Jacques Derrida, Emmanuel Levinas, and Jean-François Lyotard. Telos 2006 (137):67-95.
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  22. Richard Beardsworth (1992). On the Critical'post': Lyotard's Agitated Judgement. In Andrew E. Benjamin (ed.), Judging Lyotard. Routledge. 43--80.
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  23. Olivier Beaud (2012). Remarques sur le livre de Jean-François Kervégan. Philosophiques 39 (2):463.
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  24. Jocelyn R. Beausoleil (1985). Jean Morange, Libertés Publiques Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 5 (10):467-469.
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  25. F. De Beer (1990). L'augustinisme de St François d'Assise. Revista Agustiniana 31 (95):417-504.
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  26. Michel Bellefeuille (1994). Jean-François Malherbe, Pour Une Éthique de la Médecine, Bruxelles, Éditions Ciaco, 1990, 207 P.Jean-François Malherbe, Pour Une Éthique de la Médecine, Bruxelles, Éditions Ciaco, 1990, 207 P. [REVIEW] Horizons Philosophiques 4 (2):154-156.
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  27. Pierre Bellemare (1986). François Fédier, Interprétations Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 6 (3):104-106.
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  28. Michael Ben-Naftali (1997). The Crying Game : Lyotard, Derrida, Levinas and Thought After Auschwitz.
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  29. Marc Benamou, Todd Berliner, Margaret A. Boden, Shahar Bram, Jean Francois Lyotard, Max Paddison, Irene Deliege, Joel Rudinow & Cain Todd (2011). ANKER, STEVE, GERITZ, KATHY and SEID, STEVE (Eds). Radical Light: Alternative Film and Video in the San Francisco Bay Area, 1945-2000.(Berkeley: University of California Press). 2010. Pp. 351.£ 20.95 (Pbk). [REVIEW] British Journal of Aesthetics 51 (1):115.
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  30. Seyla Benhabib (1994). Democracy and Difference: Reflections on the Metapolitics of Lyotard and Derrida. Journal of Political Philosophy 2 (1):1–23.
  31. Andrew Benjamin (2010). Colouring Philosophy: Appel, Lyotard and Art's Work. Critical Horizons 11 (3):379-395.
    Colour plays a fundamental role in the philosophical treatments of painting. Colour while it is an essential part of the work of art cannot be divorced from the account of painting within which it is articulated. This paper begins with a discussion of the role of colour in Schelling's conception of art. Nonetheless its primary concern is to develop a critical encounter with Jean-François Lyotard's analysis of the Dutch painter Karel Appel. The limits of Lyotard's writings on painting, which this (...)
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  32. Andrew Benjamin (ed.) (1991). The Lyotard Reader. Wiley-Blackwell.
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  33. Andrew E. Benjamin (ed.) (1992). Judging Lyotard. Routledge.
    Best known for his book The Postmodern Condition , Jean-Francois Lyotard is one of the leading figures in contemporary French philosophy. This is the first collection of articles to offer an estimation and critique of his work, with particular focus on the importance to Lyotard of the question of judgement. Lyotard's interest in judgement is evident in his continuing engagement with the work of Kant. Lyotard's own essay, Sensus Communis , which opens the volume, investigates through Kant the presuppositions of (...)
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  34. Geoffrey Bennington (2001). Time After Time (Jean-Francois Lyotard). Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology 32 (3):300-311.
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  35. Geoffrey Bennington (1992). Ces Petits Differends': Lyotard and Horace. In Andrew E. Benjamin (ed.), Judging Lyotard. Routledge.
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  36. Geoffrey Bennington (1988). Lyotard: Writing the Event. Columbia University Press.
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  37. Steven Benson (1996). What's the Problem?: Jean-François Lyotard and Politics. Res Publica 2 (1):129-146.
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  38. Debra B. Bergoffen (2002). Gary E. Ayle8worth. In Hugh J. Silverman (ed.), Lyotard: Philosophy, Politics, and the Sublime. Routledge. 8--281.
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  39. Philippa Berry & Andrew Wernick (eds.) (1992). Shadow of Spirit: Postmodernism and Religion. Routledge.
    By illuminating the striking affinity between the most innovative aspects of postmodern thought and religious mystical discourse, Shadow of Spirit challenges the long established assumption that western thought is committed to nihilism. This collection of essays by internationally recognized scholars explores the implications of the fascination with the "sacred," "divine" or "infinite" which characterizes much contemporary thought. It shows how these concerns have surfaced in the work of Derrida, Baudrillard, Lyotard, Kristeva, Irigaray and others. Examining the connection between this postmodern (...)
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  40. Han Bertens (2002). Jean-Francois Lyotard. In Johannes Willem Bertens & Joseph P. Natoli (eds.), Postmodernism: The Key Figures. Blackwell Publishers. 244--248.
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  41. Tilman Beyrich (2002). Zeichen aus Asche. Lyotard und Derrida zum Holocaust. Neue Zeitschrift Für Systematische Theologie Und Religionsphilosophie 44 (2):218-236.
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  42. Heidi Bickis & Rob Shields (eds.) (2013). Rereading Jean-François Lyotard: Essays on His Later Work,. Ashgate.
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  43. Ermenegildo Bidese, L'estetica Della Temporalità: In Dialogo Con J.-F. Lyotard.
    In the contemporary anthropological discourse, the general subjects of temporality and aesthetics, as form of cognition, turn out to be the neuralgic points through which the question of the human existence is considered in many approaches to human being (cognitive, ethical, on-tological or theological). In the philosophical system of the French post-modern thinker Jean-François Lyotard (1924-1998) these two issues are deeply interlaced leading to new and original solutions of the above-mentioned question. The aim of the contribution is to reconstruct the (...)
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  44. I. Birchall (2007). On Jean-Francois Fayet's Karl Radek (1885-1939). Historical Materialism 14 (3):259.
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  45. Lieven Boeve (1997). Critical Consciousness in the Postmodern Condition. Philosophy and Theology 10 (2):449-468.
    In an attempt to clarify our present-day postmodern context and to ascertain the critical consciousness of our time, I study a number of main lines of thought in the work of the postmodernist thinkers Wolfgang Welsch, Jean-François Lyotard and Richard Rorty. Afterwards, I elaborate on the position of Jürgen Habermas in the postmodern debate. In the second section I present a schematic overview of this postmodern panorama, pointing out the main similarities and differences of the theorists under consideration. A critical (...)
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  46. Lieven Boeve (1994). Theologie na het christelijke Grote verhaal: In het spoor Van Jean-François Lyotard. Bijdragen 55 (3):269-295.
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  47. G. Bohme (1998). Lyotard's Reading of the Sublime. Kant-Studien 89 (2):205-218.
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  48. Gernot Böhme (1998). Lyotards Lektüre des Erhabenen. Kant-Studien 2 (2):198-214.
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  49. Barbara Bolt (ed.) (2007). Sensorium: Aesthetics, Art, Life. Cambridge Scholars Pub..
    This book presents a timely reconfiguration of the relations between art, philosophy, ethics, and aesthetics. Through connection with a range of contemporary social and philosophical issues and movements, this collection of essays highlights the imperative of sensorial aesthetics. The book focuses on the radical philosophical approach to aesthetics enabled by the works of Jean-François Lyotard and Gilles Deleuze. From these philosophers an older meaning of aesthetic has been recalled. Before it indicated primarily the theory of art and beauty, “aesthetic” referred (...)
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  50. Susan Bordo (1992). Postmodern Subjects, Postmodern Bodies. Feminist Studies 18 (1):159.
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