In this article, I criticize Véronique Zanetti on the topic of moral compromise. As I understand Zanetti, a compromise could only be called a “moral compromise” if (i) it does not originate under coercive conditions, (ii) it involves conflict whose subject matter is moral, and (iii) “the parties support the solution found for what they take to be moral reasons rather than strategic interests.” I offer three criticisms of Zanetti. First, Zanetti ignores how some parties may not have reason (...) to seek social peace at all. Zanetti’s claim that there is consensus on the aim of social peace can involve idealising away from disagreement in a manner that Zanetti accuses Rawls of. Second, even if there is consensus on the aim of seeking social peace, this leaves open the possibility of disagreement about which society different people should belong to. This idealises away from real world conflict concerning borders. Indeed, Zanetti does not mention that her ‘central example’ of moral disagreement, the German Abortion compromise, was enacted in the wake of German reunification. Third, there are at least two things that can be called the ‘German Abortion compromise.’ The compromise that Zanetti speaks of was imposed by the German Federal Constitutional Court. The court declared unconstitutional a law passed in 1992 that had been negotiated in parliament. Zanetti does not dwell on this lack of democratic credentials. Even the substance of the court-imposed solution is itself a dubious example of a moral compromise between parties based on what is acceptable to their reason. -/- (penultimate version - If you would like the .pdf of the final version for personal scholarly use, please contact me through the email address on my profile or my CV.). (shrink)
This is a review essay on Véronique Fóti’s Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty. It attempts to display the pattern that constitutes “the in filigree tracings” of Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty. In other words, it reconstructs the conceptual features that go into the “unthought” of expression that Véronique Fóti has given us. The reconstruction takes place in two steps. The first reconstructs the concept of expression itself as Fóti sees it in Merleau-Ponty’s thought. Here, we follow Fóti’s analysis and resolution (...) of what Merleau-Ponty himself called “the paradox of expression.” Fóti’s “resolution” of the paradox takes us then to a second step, in which we determine Fóti’s “radicalization” of the paradox. The radicalization of the paradox takes place through specific criticisms that Fóti levels against Merleau-Ponty’s writings on painting. These criticisms allow us to see that the unthought of expression lies in nascency. Fóti’s new concept of expression revolves around the idea of nascency. Nascency allows Fóti not only to envision a metaphysics of expression but also and especially an ethics. However, Fóti’s stress of nascency raises a difficult question that she does not pose. While the word “nascency” appears countless times in Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty, the word “death,” as far as I can tell, appears only twice in the entire book. I argue that the absence of death in Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty conjoined with the stress of nascency opens out onto the question of memory, hence the title of my presentation, “Nascency and Memory.” Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty exhibits a compelling combination of modesty and ambition. Undoubtedly, the modesty results from Fóti’s long-standing devotion to Merleau-Ponty’s thought. This devotion, however, did not stop her from recognizing the “failures” of Merleau-Ponty’s thinking. The ability to see beyond the thinking to which one is most devoted is truly one of the marks of a great philosopher. (shrink)
Véronique Fóti’s Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty demonstrates how the problem of expression motivates and unifies Merleau-Ponty’s investigations of art, life, nature, and ontology, culminating in a timely conception of nature as a differential expressive matrix. The key to this expressive ontology is diacritical difference. We raise three questions for this diacritical ontology: how it embodies the memory of the world, how it is interrupted by transcendence, and how it dissolves into elementality. Our inquiry points towards a diacritics of the (...) inexpressible. (shrink)
:This article has a dual purpose. On the one hand, I propose a Gnostic reading of Krzysztof Kieślowski's The Double Life of Véronique. In this interpretation, the figure of the puppeteer, who is eventually revealed to be the maker of the film's story, stands for the Gnostic demiurge. He creates puppet-people only to discard and sacrifice them when he is done performing. On the other hand, I use the film as a springboard for launching a broader philosophical conversation, existentialist in (...) nature, on the notion of world as farce. Participants in this conversation are figures such as Schopenhauer, Dostoevsky and Cioran. Weronika's sacrifice is discussed from these two complementary standpoints. (shrink)
Voilà un petit livre (140 pages), vif, stimulant, bouillonnant d'idées, présentées parfois de manière un peu touffue, qu'il serait important de lire et de discuter ! V. Nahoum-Grappe pose une question difficile, celle du contenu de la catégorie du féminin dans notre société. Au point de départ de son interrogation, une question de sociologue : quelle est la signification des comportements spécifiquement féminins dans notre société, tels qu'ils sont identifiés et mesurés, par exemple, p..
The French philosopher Renaud Barbaras remarked that late in Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s career, “The phenomenology of perception fulfills itself as a philosophy of expression.” In _Tracing Expression in Merleau-Ponty: Aesthetics, Philosophy of Biology, and Ontology, _Véronique M. Fóti_ _addresses the guiding yet neglected theme of expression in Merleau-Ponty’s thought. She traces Merleau-Ponty’s ideas about how individuals express creative or artistic impulses through his three essays on aesthetics, his engagement with animality and the “new biology” in the second of his lecture courses (...) on nature of 1957–58, and in his late ontology, articulated in 1964 in the fragmentary text of _Le visible et l’invisible _. With the exception of a discussion of Merleau-Ponty’s 1945 essay “Cezanne’s Doubt,” Fóti engages with Merleau-Ponty’s late and final thought, with close attention to both his scientific and philosophical interlocutors, especially the continental rationalists. Expression shows itself, in Merleau-Ponty’s thought, to be primordial, and this innate and fundamental nature of expression has implications for his understanding of artistic creation, science, and philosophy. (shrink)
The Pinocchio paradox, devised by Veronique Eldridge-Smith in February 2001, is a counter-example to solutions to the Liar that restrict the use or definition of semantic predicates. Pinocchio’s nose grows if and only if what he is stating is false, and Pinocchio says ‘My nose is growing’. In this statement, ‘is growing’ has its normal meaning and is not a semantic predicate. If Pinocchio’s nose is growing it is because he is saying something false; otherwise, it is not growing. ‘Because’ (...) stands here for a non-semantic relation; it might be supposed to be causal or of some other nature, but it is not semantic. The paradox is discussed in relation to Tarski’s and Kripke’s theories of truth. Although the paradox is not necessarily a counter-example to a theory of a truth predicate, it is a problem for a theory of truth of the kind preserved by validity. (shrink)
[ Samuel Scheffler] Some egalitarian liberals have proposed a division of moral labour between social institutions and individual agents, but the division-of-labour metaphor has been understood in different ways. This paper aims to disentangle some of these different understandings, with an eye to clarifying the appeal of the egalitarian-liberal project and the challenges that it faces. The idea of a division of moral labour is best understood as the expression of a strategy for accommodating diverse values. It is not an (...) apology for economic self-interest or a device for justifying personal acquisitiveness. /// [Véronique Munoz-Dardé] Are there distinctively political values? Certain egalitarians seem to think that equality is one such value. Scheffler's contribution to the symposium seeks to articulate a division of moral labour between norms of personal morality and the principles of justice that regulate social institutions, and using this suggests that the egalitarian critique of Rawls can be deflected. In this paper, instead, I question the status of equality as an intrinsic value. I argue that an egalitarianism which focuses on the status of equality as valuable in itself embraces a theory of value with the worst elements of utilitarianism while leaving behind any of the intuitive appeal that utilitarianism has. In its place I press that we need a political conception of egalitarianism which stresses the role we engage beyond those found in the norms of personal morality. (shrink)
Veronique Foti delves into the full range of Heideggerian texts to elaborate the problematics of historicity, language, and the structure of disclosure or "manifestation" in connection with the Herman poets whom Heidegger invoked along his path of thinking. Foti's reading of these ports is a probing inquiry into the aesthetic, ethical, and political implications of Heidegger's thought. She knows how technicity and poetizing are opposed yet brought together in Heidegger's hermeneutic phenomenology, how they are both politicized and linked with ethical (...) praxis, and how technicity, poetizing, and praxis cannot be dissevered from Heidegger's essential thinking. (shrink)
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