David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
International Journal of Philosophical Studies 10 (2):151 – 169 (2002)
Many of Hannah Arendt's readers argue that differences between her earlier and later work on judgment are significant enough to constitute an actual break or rupture. Of Arendt's completed works, the 'Postscriptum' to Thinking , the first volume of The Life of the Mind , and her Lectures on Kant's Political Philosophy are widely considered to be her definitive remarks on judgment. These texts are privileged for two primary reasons. First, they were written after Arendt's controversial text, Eichmann in Jerusalem . It was Arendt's recognition of the role that Eichmann's inability to think played in his war crimes which motivated her to analyse more fully not only the 'mental activity' of thinking, but those of willing, and judging as well. Second, in The Life of the Mind and the Kant Lectures , Arendt treats judgment as a distinct mental activity; in her earlier work judgment is connected to both politics and thought. In this essay I argue that while Arendt does indeed reformulate her notion of judgment, she does not depoliticize it. I begin by calling into question Ronald Beiner's claim that Arendt's later work on judgment can stand in for the unwritten third volume of The Life of the Mind . I then consider two more specific claims, the first of which is that judgment is relevant only in 'rare' times of 'crisis'. I argue that a crisis as Arendt understands it is not necessarily and merely a 'rare' and short-lived phenomenon. The effects of what Arendt refers to as 'dark times' are long-term and pervasive and, moreover, the function of making judgments within such an expanded context is politically germane. Second, I problematize the idea that conceiving of judgment as a distinct mental faculty necessarily disconnects it from politics. I examine the nature of Arendt's relationship to Kant and argue that she appropriates and reconceptualizes his work in such a way that judgment, while a distinct faculty, nonetheless retains its political relevance. I conclude by suggesting that the impulse to systematize Arendt's unsystematic treatment of judgment ought to be resisted.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Melissa A. Orlie (1997). Living Ethically, Acting Politically. Cornell University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Steve Buckler (2007). Political Theory and Political Ethics in the Work of Hannah Arendt. Contemporary Political Theory 6 (4):461.
Steve Buckler (2007). Political Theory and Political Ethics in the Work of Hannah Arendt. Contemporary Political Theory 6 (4):461-483.
Similar books and articles
Hannah Arendt (2003). Responsibility and Judgment. Schocken Books.
Garrath Williams (2007). Ethics and Human Relationality: Between Arendt's Accounts of Morality. HannahArendt.Net 3.
Phillip Birger Hansen (1993). Hannah Arendt: Politics, History and Citizenship. Stanford University Press.
Roger Berkowitz (ed.) (2010). Thinking in Dark Times: Hannah Arendt on Ethics and Politics. Fordham University Press.
Ronald Beiner (1997). Rereading Hannah Arendt's Kant Lectures. Philosophy and Social Criticism 23 (1):21-32.
Simon Swift (2009). Hannah Arendt. Routledge.
Avery Goldman (2010). An Antinomy of Political Judgment: Kant, Arendt, and the Role of Purposiveness in Reflective Judgment. Continental Philosophy Review 43 (3):331-352.
Shai Lavi (2010). Crimes of Action, Crimes of Thought : Arendt on Reconciliation, Forgiveness, and Judgment. In Roger Berkowitz, Jeffrey Katz & Thomas Keenan (eds.), Thinking in Dark Times: Hannah Arendt on Ethics and Politics. Fordham University Press
Linda M. G. Zerilli (2005). "We Feel Our Freedom": Imagination and Judgment in the Thought of Hannah Arendt. Political Theory 33 (2):158 - 188.
A. Degryse (2011). Sensus Communis as a Foundation for Men as Political Beings: Arendt's Reading of Kant's Critique of Judgment. Philosophy and Social Criticism 37 (3):345-358.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads44 ( #94,270 of 1,902,050 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #167,851 of 1,902,050 )
How can I increase my downloads?