Time, Philosophy and Chronopathologies

Parrhesia (15):64-80 (2012)
This essay is an elaboration on some central themes and arguments from my recent book, Chronopathologies: Time and Politics in Deleuze, Derrida, Phenomenology and Analytic Philosophy (Rowman and Littlefield 2012). There is hence an element of generality to this essay that the book itself is better able to justify. But a short programmatic piece has its own virtues, especially for those of us who are time poor (which is pretty much everyone in contemporary academia). Moreover, it adds a dimension to the above book by more explicitly situating it in relation to what is an emerging view in some recent scholarship (such as John McCumber, Len Lawlor, David Hoy, and before this Liz Grosz) that time is central to the identity of continental philosophy, as well as considering some of the work that in different ways contests this kind of interpretation of the identity of continental philosophy (e.g. Simon Glendinning, and, tacitly, Paul Redding). In continuing to side with the former over the latter, I will also develop my argument that time is one of the most significant factors in the divided house that I think contemporary philosophy remains, and I conclude by offering a series of negative prescriptions regarding how we might better avoid particular chronopathologies, or time-sicknesses, that are endemic to these philosophical trajectories, and that are also present (to greater and lesser degrees) in the majority of individual philosophers standardly labelled analytic and continental. To the extent that such sicknesses are at least partly inevitable, akin to a transcendental illusion, this paper consists in a call to be more attentive to this tendency, and to the methodological, metaphilosophical, and ethico-political consequences that follow from them.
Keywords time  continental philosophy  analytic philosophy  ethics  politics  methodology
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