The dream is a fragment

An appreciation and practice of the fragment is a feature of all European Romanticism, but it was in early German (or ‘Jena’) Romanticism, and most of all in the work of Friedrich Schlegel, that the concept of ‘the fragment’ was philosophically determined. Indeed, the fragment has been called ‘the central philosophical concept of early German […]

193 reviews

REViEWS Beneath the soviets the beach McKenzie Wark, Molecular Red: Theory for the Anthropocene. Verso, London, 2015. xxii + 280 pp., £16.99 hb., 978 1 78168 827 4. Geological time is long; the lifespan of critical terms is decidedly shorter. The sedimentary record of buzz words logs the granulated residue of terms that were snuffed […]

Spontaneous generation

Spontaneous generation The fantasy of the birth of concepts in Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason Stella sandford In the second edition of the Critique of Pure Reason, at the end of the transcendental deduction of the categories, Kant distinguishes the doctrine of transcendental idealism from competing theories of knowledge – or, more specifically, theories of […]

176 Reviews

Reviews Grande biogBenoît Peeters, Derrida: A Biography, trans. Andrew Brown, Polity Press, Cambridge and Malden MA, 2012. 603 pp., £25.00 hb., 978 0 74565 615 1.‘What matter who’s speaking, someone said, what matter who’s speaking?’ Despite post-structuralist philosophies’ association with Beckettian questions such as these, they remain surprisingly bound to what Foucault called that ‘singular […]

Shulamith Firestone, 1945–2012

Shulamith Firestone, 1945–2012Shulamith Firestone was perhaps the most infamous radical feminist theorist of the twentieth century. As a student at the Art Institute of Chicago, she became an early activist in the women’s movement, founding (with Jo Freeman) the Westside Group in 1967, in large part in response to the patronizing sexism of left politics […]

80 Reviews

REVIEWS A paradigm too far? Axel Honneth, The Struggle for Recognition: The Moral Grammar of Social Conflicts, translated by Joel Anderson, Polity Press, Cambridge, 1995. xxi + 215 pp., £39.95 hb., 0 7456 1160 5. Axel Honneth, The Fragmented World of the Social: Essays in Social and Political Philosophy, edited by Charles W. Wright, State […]

81 Reviews

REVIEWS Capital futures István Mészáros, Beyond Capital, The Merlin Press, London, 1995. xxvi + 994 pp., £45.00 hb., £14.95 pb., 0 85036 454 X hb., 0 85036 432 9 pb. It is now a quarter of a century since István Mészáros had his first big success in Britain with Marxʼs Theory of Alienation. In the […]

Writing as a man

In the philosophical works of Emmanuel Levinasʼs early career, it is in a phenomenology of Eros that he claims to have uncovered the site of what he calls ʻtranscendenceʼ. This is no small claim. According to the argument of the later Totality and Infinity (1961),1 the history of Western philosophy is to be thought as […]

87 Reviews

Philosophy of Mind is presently regarded as one of the most productive areas of comtemporary analytic philosophy. A number of recent introductory works (here those by Jackson and Braddon Mitchell, Crane, Kim and Rey) give us a chance to reflect on the dominant paradigms in terms of which the subject is taught. These texts display […]

Going Australian: Reconfiguring Feminism and Philosophy, 6–8 February 1998, University of Warwick, UK

News Affectivity British Society for Phenomenology Conference, 3–5 April 1998, OxfordWebbʼs critical questioning focused on the issue of whether Heidegger is able to think radically enough the differentiation – which occurs in and through the saying of language – between a thing and its horizon of givenness, which is thereby the dimension of the thingʼs […]

95 Reviews

Reviews Drawing the colour lineK. Anthony Appiah and Amy Gutmann, Color Conscious: The Political Morality of Race, Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ, 1996. 191 pp., £23.00 hb., £11.95 pb., 0 691 02661 0 hb., 0 691 05909 8 pb. Suppose that you subscribe to the view that only a racist society could generate a belief […]

Contingent ontologies

Contingent ontologies Sex, gender and ‘woman’ in Simone de Beauvoir and Judith Butler Stella sandford a concerted critique of the sex/gender distinction has not mitigated this sense of historical importance, or even historical necessity. But developments in feminist theory – in particular the claims being made on behalf of various feminisms of difference – and […]

102 Reviews

If the Encyclopédie project of Diderot et al. is remembered today, it is not because it is much consulted, but for the tremendous Enlightenment optimism that made its conception (if not its completion) possible. In historical terms, it is the idea of the Encyclopédie that is most important, not what is contained within the volumes […]

103 Reviews

To see clearly requires distance, but during the last century Western intellectuals were too close to psychoanalysis to get a good view. Insider accounts, both friendly and antagonistic, predominated. The decline in analytic fortunes since the 1960s, along with the general shift in the Zeitgeist, has opened a path for historical perspective. Cassandraʼs Daughter is […]

Feminism against ‘the feminine’

Whilst the distinction between French and AngloAmerican feminism was always rather dubious (failing to be accurate, consistent or inclusive at the level of either national origin, language of choice or theoretical commitment; seeming to parcel feminist theory – or at least the feminist theory that mattered – out into two Western blocks from which the […]

113 Reviews

The thingRudi Visker, Truth and Singularity: Taking Foucault into Phenomenology, Kluwer Academic, Dordrecht/Boston/ London, hb. 1999; pb. 2001. 399 pp., £110.00 hb., £29.00 pb., 0 7923 5985 2 hb., 0 7923 6397 3 pb.by some “thing” that refuses to become part of the order of meaning (signification).ʼ My ʻthingʼ is thus something to which I […]

114 Reviews

Reviews In 1971, Bryan Magee published a book of conversations with British philosophers under the title Modern British Philosophy. Originating in a series of radio broadcasts and appearing under the imprint of Secker & Warburg, it was intended as a ʻlively introductionʼ to the philosophy of the day. The list of contributors included most of […]

118 Reviews

Reviews Revenge or revival? Daniel Bensaïd, Marx for Our Times: Adventures and Misadventures of a Critique, trans. Gregory Elliott, Verso, London and New York, 2002. xvii + 392 pp., £20.00 hb., 1 85984 712 9. ^ The translation of Marx for Our Times presents to an Anglophone readership one of the more ambitious and, in […]