Ramon Llull (1232-1316), born on Majorca, was one of the most remarkable lay intellectuals of the thirteenth century. He devoted much of his life to promoting missions among unbelievers, the reform of Western Christian society, and personal spiritual perfection. He wrote over 200 philosophical and theological works in Catalan, Latin, and Arabic. Many of these expound on his "Great Universal Art of Finding Truth," an idiosyncratic dialectical system that he thought capable of proving Catholic beliefs to non-believers. This study offers (...) the first full-length analysis of his theories about rhetoric and preaching, which were central to his evangelizing activities. It explains how Llull attempted to synthesize commonplace advice about courtly speech and techniques of popular sermons into a single program for secular and sacred eloquence that would necessarily promote love of God and neighbor. Llull's work is remarkable testimony to the diffusion of clerical culture among educated lay-people of his era, and to their enthusiasm for applying that knowledge in the pursuit of learning and piety. This book should find a place on the shelf of every scholar of medieval history, religion, and rhetoric. (shrink)
Recently there has been a renewed interest in moral inquiry among American scholars in a variety of disciplines. This collection of accessible essays by scholars in philosophy, political theory, psychology, history, literary studies, sociology, religious studies, anthropology, and legal studies affords a view of the current state of moral inquiry in the American academy, and it offers fresh departures for ethically informed, interdisciplinary scholarship. Seeking neither to reduce values to facts nor facts to values, these essays aim to foster (...) discussion about inquiry and moral judgment, and demonstrate that moral inquiry need not be either dispassionate and value-free or moralistic and preachy. (shrink)
The world changes and we are encouraged to change with it, but is all change good? This book asks us to stop and consider whether the higher education we are providing, and engaging in, for ourselves and our societies is what we ought to have, or what commercial interests want us to have. In claiming that there is a place for a higher education of learning, such as the university, amongst our array of tertiary options the book attempts to (...) explore what this might be. Drawing from the existential literature and in particular Heidegger, the book investigates the case for such a form of higher education and settles on existential trust as the ground upon which the community of scholars that ought to be the university can flourish. This book is written for those who are concerned about the trends towards performativity and for those who are not yet so concerned! It offers a controversial and, some might say, idealistic view of what might be but makes no apology for that since the book proposes that higher education is becoming evermore unacceptable for those who value democracy, tolerance and learning. (shrink)
The scholar and his public in the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance.--Thomism and the Italian thought of the Renaissance.--The contribution of religious orders to Renaissance thought and learning.--Bibliography (p. -120).
In the current socio-political climate pedagogies consistent with rationalism are in the ascendancy. One way to challenge the purchase of rationalism within educational discourse and practice is through the body, or by re-thinking the nature of mind-body relations. While the orientation of this paper is ultimately phenomenological, it takes as its point of departure recent feminist scholarship, which is demonstrating that attending to physiology can provide insight into the complexity of mind-body relations. Elizabeth Wilson's account of the role of (...) the gut in psychological processes suggests a far less hierarchical relation between brain and body than rationalism allows. Such insights are also supported by recent phenomenological inquiries into cognition and the body. My question is, what implications do these insights have for how the nature of embodiment is understood, and, by extension, learning? This paper explores how informal, non-cognitive modes of knowing, or of engaging with the world, inform learning in higher education contexts. More specifically, it raises the question of what role non-cognitive modes of engagement, such as sensibility, have in augmenting, enabling or delimiting the learning process. (shrink)
Between 1100 and 1600, the emphasis on reason in the learning and intellectual life of Western Europe became more pervasive and widespread than ever before in the history of human civilization. Of crucial significance was the invention of the university around 1200, within which reason was institutionalized and where it became a deeply embedded, permanent feature of Western thought and culture. It is therefore appropriate to speak of an Age of Reason in the Middle Ages, and to view it (...) as a forerunner and herald of the Age of Reason that was to come in the seventeenth century. The object of this study is twofold: to describe how reason was manifested in the curriculum of medieval universities, especially in the subjects of logic, natural philosophy and theology; and to explain how the Middle Ages acquired an undeserved reputation as an age of superstition, barbarism, and unreason. (shrink)
The field of Philosophy and Education seems to be experiencing a renewed interest in the work of Aristotle. As recently reviewed by Curren (Oxf Rev Educ 36(5):543–559, 2010), most of this attention aligns with the virtue ethics movement where themes like moral development in education, and the inquiry on human flourishing as the aim of education are prevalent. For sources, this scholarship relies heavily and extensively on the Nicomachean Ethics and Politics’ Book VIII where Aristotle develops his single, clearly (...) defined account of education. Among the short list of scholars who include Poetics in their research, their work seems to return to issues of morality and education (Carr in J Aesthet Educ 44(3):1–15, 2010; Gupta in J Aesthet Educ 44(4):60–80, 2010). This paper is an attempt to rediscover Aristotle’s insights on the peculiar type of learning that the arts seem to favor. In order to carry on this investigation, I will first guide my argument towards Aristotle’s remarks on poiesis. Then, I will focus on what constitutes the heart of poiesis, that is, mimesis. I will pay special attention to Aristotle’s consideration of both poiesis and mimesis as ultimately dealing with what he calls “possibility.” I will argue that learning in the arts entails the coming together of these three qualities. This would be a way of learning characterized by seeing human likenesses emerge as such in our interactions with artworks. (shrink)
Jewish learning and thought in Languedoc -- 1250-1300: implications of original philosophic work and the diffusion of philosophic learning in Languedoc -- 1250-1300: Jewish contacts with Christian intellectuals and Jewish thought regarding Christianity -- Meiri's transformation of Talmud study: philosophic spirituality in a halakhic key -- 1300: on the eve of the controversy -- 1300-1304: knowledge and authority in dispute -- 1304-1306: the controversy peaks -- The effects of the expulsion: Jewish philosophic culture in Roussillon and Provence.
In this paper, we present an especially effective tool for helping students to learn and apply the skills of critical reasoning. Our Writing Portfolio Project is a set of nine progressively staged writing assignments that guide students through the formulation and development of an argumentative paper. The set of assignments are designed to reinforce, reintroduce, and repeat critical reasoning skills. In this paper, we articulate the potential uses for the Writing Portfolio Project, give a brief explanation of the reasoning behind (...) the format of the project, and indicate ways one might implement the Writing Portfolio Project into one's curriculum. (shrink)
Ex-Jew, eternal Jew: early representations of the Jewish Spinoza -- Refining Spinoza: Moses Mendelssohn's response to the Amsterdam heretic -- The first modern Jew: Berthold Auerbach's Spinoza and the beginnings of an image -- A rebel against the past, a revealer of secrets: Salomon Rubin and the east European Maskilic Spinoza -- From the heights of Mount Scopus: Yosef Klausner and the Zionist rehabilitation of Spinoza -- Farewell, Spinoza: I. B. Singer and the tragicomedy of the Jewish Spinozist.
1. The Place of Intellectual Life: The University -- The University as an Institutional Solution to the Problem of Knowledge -- The Alienability of Knowledge in Our So-called Knowledge Society -- The Knowledge Society as Capitalism of the Third Order -- Will the University Survive the Era of Knowledge Management? -- Postmodernism as an Anti-university Movement -- Regaining the University's Critical Edge by Historicizing the Curriculum -- Affirmative Action as a Strategy for Redressing the Balance Between Research and Teaching -- (...) Academics Rediscover Their Soul: The Rebirth of Academic Freedom' -- 2. The Stuff of Intellectual Life: Philosophy -- Epistemology as 'Always Already' Social Epistemology -- From Social Epistemology to the Sociology of Philosophy: The Codification of Professional Prejudices? -- Interlude: Seeds of an Alternative Sociology of Philosophy -- Prolegomena to a Critical Sociology of Twentieth-century Anglophone Philosophy -- Analytic Philosophy's Ambivalence Toward the Empirical Sciences -- Professionalism as Differentiating American and British Philosophy -- Conclusion: Anglophone Philosophy as a Victim of Its Own Success -- 3. The People of Intellectual Life: Intellectuals -- Can Intellectuals Survive if the Academy Is a No-fool Zone? -- How Intellectuals Became an Endangered Species in Our Times: The Trail of Psychologism -- A Genealogy of Anti-intellectualism: From Invisible Hand to Social Contagion -- Re-defining the Intellectual as an Agent of Distributive Justice -- The Critique of Intellectuals in a Time of Pragmatist Captivity -- Pierre Bourdieu: The Academic Sociologist as Public Intellectual -- 4. The Improvisational Nature of Intellectual Life -- Academics Caught Between Plagiarism and Bullshit -- Bullshit: A Disease Whose Cure Is Always Worse -- The Scientific Method as a Search for the (Piled) Higher (and Deeper) Bullshit -- Conclusion: How to Improvize on the World-historic Stage -- Summary of the Argument. (shrink)
This volume brings historians of science and social historians together to consider the role of "little tools"--such as tables, reports, questionnaires, dossiers, index cards--in establishing academic and bureaucratic claims to authority and objectivity. From at least the eighteenth century onward, our science and society have been planned, surveyed, examined, and judged according to particular techniques of collecting and storing knowledge. Recently, the seemingly self-evident nature of these mundane epistemic and administrative tools, as well as the prose in which they are (...) cast, has demanded historical examination. The essays gathered here, arranged in chronological order by subject from the late seventeenth to the late twentieth century, involve close readings of primary texts and analyses of academic and bureaucratic practices as parts of material culture. The first few essays, on the early modern period, largely point to the existence of a "juridico-theological" framework for establishing authority. Later essays demonstrate the eclipse of the role of authority per se in the modern period and the emergence of the notion of "objectivity." Most of the essays here concern the German cultural space as among the best exemplars of the academic and bureaucratic practices described above. The introduction to the volume, however, is framed at a general level the closing essays also extend the analyses beyond Germany to broader considerations on authority and objectivity in historical practice. The volume will interest scholars of European history and German studies as well as historians of science. Peter Becker is Professor of Central European History, European University Institute. William Clark is Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science, Cambridge University. (shrink)
Beginning in the Southern Sung, one Confucian sect gradually came to dominate literati culture and, by the Ming dynasty, was canonized as state orthodoxy. This book is a historical and textual critique of the process by which claims to exclusive possession of the truth came to serve power. The author analyzes the formation of the Confucian canon and its role in the civil service examinations, the enshrinement of worthies in the Confucian temple, and the emergence of the Confucian anthology, activities (...) that canonized one conception of the Confucian tradition as orthodox by selecting among persons who shaped the tradition. This lineage became 'the genealogy of the way'. The author draws on contemporary cultural and literary theory to help situate Confucian anthologies in ritual, institutional, sectarian, and ideological contexts. (shrink)
Power is everywhere. But what is it and how does it infuse personal and institutional relationships in higher education? Power, Knowledge and the Academy: The Institutional is Political takes a close-up and critical look at both the elusive and blatant workings and consequences of power in a range of everyday sites in universities. Chapters focus on specific locations in which power shapes personal and institutional knowledge including student-supervisor relationships, research teams, networking, the Research Assessment Exercise in the UK, and literature (...) reviews. (shrink)