David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Ethics, Place and Environment 10 (1):107 – 119 (2007)
This article sketches a theory of time-binding communication, which is to say communication that unifies widely separated times much as space-binding communication unifies widely separated places. Drawing from the work of Harold Innis, it first describes the function and character of time-binding communication as a means to social continuity. Then, following Alasdair MacIntyre and Michael Oakshott, it explains the nature and necessary circumstances of this sort of time-binding communication, or tradition. It discusses the character, consequences, and causes of decadence - radical discontinuity - as these have been described by Richard Weaver, C. E. M. Joad, and Jacques Barzun. Finally, it turns to David Lowenthal's notion of the past as a 'foreign country' in an effort to explain the relations between modernity and both tradition and decadence, as well as the geography of tradition and decadence in the modern world.
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