Agnes Heller conversó con la Redacción de Areté el 24 de abril de 2003, durante una visita a la Universidad Católica para dictar la Lección Inaugural del Año Académico de la Facultad de Letras y Ciencias Humanas. En la conversación estuvieron presentes los profesores Pepi Patrón, Fidel Tubino y Miguel Giusti.
Although contemporary historical novels share a number of features with the traditional historical novel, as analysed by Lukács (1981), they display a fundamental change in the perception of history, evident in the disappearance of the omniscient narrator, in their choice of significant and representative figures, and scepticism regarding teleology of history or the world-historical role of war and violence. On the one hand, history has become a riddle, and this is reflected in the preference for the form of the detective (...) novel, for which the model is The Name of the Rose (Eco 1983). On the other hand, there is a clear preference for two historical periods: the collapse of the ancient world and the birth of the modern from the Renaissance to the 18th century. (shrink)
In this essay I want to show that while the concept of autonomy can hardly make a meaningful contribution to the understanding of contemporary artworks, the concept of the dignity of artwork can make such a contribution.
The German relationship to the Greeks was central to German self-understanding. It defined German identity culturally through the exclusion of democracy from the idealized image of Greece and through the emphasis on Greek originality that served to devalue the Roman, Latin and Renaissance translations of the Greek heritage. Hostility to the legacy of the Latin spirit, to legal thought and to rationality, reinforced the German rejection of French intellectual and cultural hegemony. These German fictions about the Greeks were closely linked (...) with reflections on modernity, the death of the Christian God and a disenchanted Cartesian universe. They led Nietzsche and Heidegger to more `original' interpretations of the Greeks as the source of German rebirth. (shrink)
This article distinguishes between two constituents of modernity which together stand for the essence of modernity. It also distinguishes between three logics or tendencies in modernity. In pursuit of these aims it concentrates on a single issue, arguing that one cannot understand modernity, particularly not its heterogeneous character, from the viewpoint of the technological imagination (the Heideggerian Gestell) alone. The article interprets modernity as a world that draws on two sources of imagination: the technological and the historical. Most of this (...) article is devoted to discussing these two kinds of imagination, their conflicts, balances, and imbalances within each of the three logics of modernity. The article demonstrates that the balance between the two kinds of imagination is different in each of the three logics, and that the role of the historical imagination is different not only in terms of force and magnitude but also in kind. (shrink)
This essay argues that Popper's work, seen from the vantage point of increasing historical distance, can be viewed as the first attempt to understand the grand narrative as the adjustment of metaphysics to the modern world. When viewed from such a distance enduring questions regarding holism, identity, essentialism, and truth can once again be thrown into relief, together with the pressing issues of the paradox of freedom and sovereignty.
While Shakespeare's historical and political imagination mainly centres on the traditional character of the stranger or exile, The Merchant of Venice and Othello stand out as dramas about a new figure, the absolute stranger. The absolute stranger belongs to a new situation Shakespeare found in cosmopolitan Venice. Through Shylock and Othello, Shakespeare encounters the drama of the outsider's failed assimilation into cosmopolitan life. For Shakespeare, the figure of the absolute stranger is a representative illusion, and these two plays are dramas (...) about the modern world. (shrink)
The author discusses two questions, the relation between liberalism and democracy, and the relation between ethics, morality and law. As to the first question, she argues that neither liberalism nor democracy are merely formal. Roughly spoken, it can be said that liberalism stands for negative liberties, whereas democracy stands for positive ones. She observes a non-contingent tension between the ethos of liberalism (personal freedom) and the ethos of democracy (equality; majority rule). It is the task of morality to maintain and (...) restore the balance between these two kinds of ethos. As to the second question, she is worried about the balance between law (legal regulation), ethics, and morality. On the one hand, abolishing legal regulations would amount to abolishing the freedom of the moderns. On the other hand, the substitution of legal regulations for ethical regulations would lead to a similar result: the end of the freedom of the moderns through the homogenisation of life. In the former case, personal support, charity, magnanimity, and caring would get lost, while in the latter there would be no escape from community pressure towards uniformity. (shrink)