Stanley Cavell's work is distinctive not only in its importance to philosophy but also for its remarkable interdisciplinary range. Cavell is read avidly by students of film, photography, painting, and music, but especially by students of literature, for whom Cavell offers major readings of Thoreau, Emerson, Shakespeare, and others. In this first book-length study of Cavell's writings, Michael Fischer examines Cavell's relevance to the controversies surrounding poststructuralist literary theory, particularly works by Jacques Derrida, J. Hillis Miller, Paul de Man, and (...) Stanley Fish. Throughout his study, Fischer focuses on skepticism, a central concern of Cavell's multifaceted work. Cavell, following J. L. Austin and Wittgenstein, does not refute the radical epistemological questioning of Descartes, Hume, and others, but rather characterizes skepticism as a significant human possibility or temptation. As presented by Fischer, Cavell's accounts of both external-world and other-minds skepticism share significant affinities with deconstruction, a connection overlooked by contemporary literary theorists. Fischer follows Cavell's lead in examining how different genres address the problems raised by skepticism and goes on to show how Cavell draws on American and English romanticism in fashioning a response to it. He concludes by analyzing Cavell's remarks about current critical theory, focusing on Cavell's uneasiness with some of the conclusions reached by its practitioners. Fischer shows that Cavell's insights, grounded in powerful analyses of Descartes, Hume, and Wittgenstein, permit a fresh view of Derrida, Miller, de Man, and Fish. The result is not only a revealing characterization of deconstruction but a much-needed and insightful introduction to Cavell's rich but difficult oeuvre. (shrink)
Many humanities professors feel anxious about the future of their subject. Declining enrollments, shrinking budgets, a depressed academic job market, and widely publicized gibes by governors and editorialists about the uselessness of the humanities are prompting some humanities scholars—myself included—to wonder occasionally whether anyone is going to carry on the work we care so much about. In her contribution to one of several recent books that I will be examining here on the plight of the humanities, Judith Butler admits, “I (...) even sometimes think maybe I will be lucky enough to leave the earth before I have to see the full destruction of the humanities.”1 Although pressures to demonstrate the... (shrink)
Even in a journal with the welcoming title Philosophy and Literature, contributors rightly feel obliged to explain why they are relating philosophical and literary texts to one another. Seeing literature as an engagingly vivid, "speaking picture" "figuring forth" the difficult abstractions of philosophy was once a default way of linking the two. But such a connection shortchanges the thinking at work in literature, reducing it to a popularizing tool, and overlooks the stories, examples, and metaphors that inform some powerful works (...) of philosophy. The most thoughtful work on philosophy and literature now sees them contributing in distinctive, equally... (shrink)
Double-entry accounting, with its method for the objective calculation of profits and system of capital accounting, is often seen as closely linked with our modern-day system of capitalism. Questions regarding the role of profits are at the center of many debates on "business ethics." Luca Pacioli, a 15th century Franciscan friar, is recognized as the "father of accounting" because he published the first description of the double-entry system. However, Pacioli's "ethical" views have not been as broadly recognized. The main purpose (...) of this paper is to present and discuss Pacioli's views on the conduct of business enterprise and the pursuit of business profits. (shrink)
Lippenbekenntnisse und Zitatenversatzstücke zur antiken Philosophie gibt es in der rechts- und sozialwissenschaftlichen Literatur zur Genüge. So wird aber oft der wesentliche Gehalt und die andauernde wirkungsgeschichtliche Bedeutung dieses Denkens verstellt. Eine elementare Einsicht ist die, dass jeweils unsere Herkunft mitbestimmt, zu welcher Gegenwart und Zukunft wir fähig sind. Dabei ist die antike Philosophie die Plattform einer gemeinsamen intellektuellen Herkunft von seither sich kontinuierlich wiederholenden Frage- und Problemstellungen.
Papers presented at a meeting organized by the èOsterreichische Sektion of the International Association for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy and the Institut fèur Rechtsphilosophie, Methodologie der Rechtswissenschaften und Allgemeine Staatslehre, Universitèat Salzburg, and held May 18-20, 1983 at the Bildungshaus Virgil, Salzburg.
Die Einordnung der Rechtsphilosophie als akademische Disziplin reicht vom reinen Grundlagenfach mit «Service-Funktion» für die praktischen Rechtswissenschaften über ein interdisziplinäres Verständnis, das die Bezüge zu anderen ...
Stets war der Begriff «Fortschritt» von Glücksverheissungen begleitet. In der Renaissance, vollends dann in der Aufklärung wandelt er sich zum wissenschaftlichen Fortschritt. Die Rechtswissenschaften und die frühen Formen der Sozialwissenschaften stehen ganz im Bann dieser Utopie der Vernunft. Die Geheimbünde versuchen erstmals, wissenschaftlichen Fortschritt zu «institutionalisieren», Utopismus und Aufklärung sind um eine «Kodifikation des Fortschritts» bemüht. De Sade unternimmt erste ideologiekritische Schritte, indem er die Vernunft als beliebig einsetzbares Rechtfertigungsinstrument entlarvt. Die Traditionszusammenhänge des 19. Jahrhunderts ebnen den Weg für das (...) Verständnis aktueller Probleme. Dabei ergibt sich folgender Befund: Die «Neuzeit» scheint insofern ein Ende zu haben, wie der Fortschrittsglauben, der sie einst hervorgebracht hat. Die automatische Verbindung des Fortschritts mit Glück und Freiheit hat sich zusehends als Illusion erwiesen. (shrink)
In "Stanley Cavell and the Limits of Appreciation," Ted Cohen restates his hatred of Richard Wagner's music. Cohen hears something "very nasty" in Wagner's music, "an element of Nazism," to borrow Thomas Mann's phrase for what Mann, too, found disturbing in Wagner.1 Whereas Mann was still able to value Wagner's music, Cohen despises listening to it. Cohen realizes that his revulsion sets him apart not only from Mann but also from W. H. Auden, who praised Wagner's "consummate skill" in creating (...) heroes and heroines who exhibit the irrationality and self-destructiveness of human nature "in all its formidable enchantment."2 Cohen notes how another eminent listener, Arturo Toscanini, also thought Wagner's music worth... (shrink)
Like many readers, I sympathize with Charles Altieri's attempt in "Presence and Reference in a Literary Text"1 to correct Derrida's assimilation of poetry to linguistic "freeplay without origin." But Altieri's "middle ground" solution is at best a stopgap measure, delaying the deconstructionist project but not finally answering it. Altieri agrees with Derrida that "language is not primarily a set of pictures ideally mirroring a world" . But he resists the conclusion that for Derrida follows from this premise, namely, that poems (...) are consequently self-referential and antimimetic. Instead Altieri adopts a position between these two extremes, seeing in art the representation not of reality but of the "stances" we take toward our world. Poems reveal "the qualities of human actions" . In "This is Just to Say," for example, Williams constructs a "simple drama" which brings to light a speaker's "honesty, self-knowledge, and faith in his wife's understanding" . · 1. Charles Altieri, "Presence and Reference in a Literary Text: The Example of Williams' 'This is Just to Say,'" Critical Inquiry 5 : 489-510; all further references to this article will be included in this text. Michael Fischer is an assistant professor of English at the University of New Mexico. He has written on nineteenth- and twentieth-century modern critical theory and on the defense of poetry in modern criticism. (shrink)
The archive is the place for the storage of documents and records. With the emergence of the modern state, it became the storehouse for the material from which national memories were constructed. Archives also housed the proliferation of files and case histories as populations were subjected to disciplinary power and surveillance. Behind all scholarly research stands the archive. The ultimate plausibility of a piece of research depends on the grounds, the sources, from which the account is extracted and compiled. An (...) expanding and unstable globalizing archive presents particular problems for classifying and legitimating knowledge. Increasingly the boundaries between the archive and everyday life become blurred through digital recording and storage technologies. Not only does the volume of recordable archive material increase dramatically, but the volume of material seen worthy of archiving increases too, as the criteria of what can, or should be, archived expands. Life increasingly becomes lived in the shadow of the archive. (shrink)