Author: Charles de Brosses
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2017-07-26
Genre: Social Science
For more than 250 years, Charles de Brosses’s term “fetishism” has exerted great influence over our most ambitious thinkers. Used as an alternative to “magic,” but nonetheless expressing the material force of magical thought, de Brosses’s term has proved indispensable to thinkers as diverse as Kant, Hegel, Marx, Freud, Lacan, Baudrillard, and Derrida. With this book, Daniel H. Leonard offers the first fully annotated English translation of the text that started it all, On the Worship of Fetish Gods, and Rosalind C. Morris offers incisive commentary that helps modern readers better understand it and its legacy. The product of de Brosses’s autodidactic curiosity and idiosyncratic theories of language, On the Worship of Fetish Gods is an enigmatic text that is often difficult for contemporary audiences to assess. In a thorough introduction to the text, Leonard situates de Brosses’s work within the cultural and intellectual milieu of its time. Then, Morris traces the concept of fetishism through its extraordinary permutations as it was picked up and transformed by the fields of philosophy, comparative religion, political economy, psychoanalysis, and anthropology. Ultimately, she breaks new ground, moving into and beyond recent studies by thinkers such as William Pietz, Hartmut Böhme, and Alfonso Iacono through illuminating new discussions on topics ranging from translation issues to Africanity and the new materialisms.
The philosophical unity so visible in Europe at the time of the Reformation and still perceptible during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries began to disintegrate in the early years of the nineteenth century. The accession of new languages to the status of scientific languages, the rise of nationalistically minded generations of philosophers, the progressive multiplication of the professors of philosophy, many of whom became philosophical writers, created a new historical situation. Descartes wrote his 'Meditations' in Latin, so they were read at once in the whole of civilized Europe; one hundred year later, Condillac could not read Locke in the original, and when Kant published his masterwork in German, it remained for many years a sort of mystery philosophy chiefly known from summaries, interpretations, and even criticisms. It is therefore almost unavoidable to take into account the nationalities of the philsophers in the nineteenth century and, up to a point at least, to order their doctrines accordingly. --from the Preface
This book gives a unique historical and interpretive analysis of a widely pervasive mode of thought that it describes as the legacy of positivism. Viewing Auguste Comte as a pivotal figure, it charts the historical origins of his positivism and follows its later development through John Stuart Mill and Émile Littré. It shows how epistemological shifts in positivism influenced parallel developments in the human and legal sciences, and thereby treats legal positivism and positivism as it is understood in the human sciences within a common framework.
Author: Associate Professor of Philosophy Dean Moyar
Release Date: 2010-04-05
The nineteenth century is a period of stunning philosophical originality, characterised by radical engagement with the emerging human sciences. Often overshadowed by twentieth century philosophy which sought to reject some of its central tenets, the philosophers of the nineteenth century have re-emerged as profoundly important figures. The Routledge Companion to Nineteenth Century Philosophy is an outstanding survey and assessment of the century as a whole. Divided into seven parts and including thirty chapters written by leading international scholars, the Companion examines and assesses the central topics, themes, and philosophers of the nineteenth century, presenting the first comprehensive picture of the period in a single volume: German Idealism philosophy as political action, including young Hegelians, Marx and Tocqueville philosophy and subjectivity, including Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard and Nietzsche scientific naturalism, including Darwinism, philosophy of race, experimental psychology and Neo-Kantianism utilitarianism and British Idealism American Idealism and Pragmatism new directions in Mind and Logic, including Brentano, Frege and Husserl. The Routledge Companion to Nineteenth Century Philosophy is essential reading for students of philosophy, and for anyone interested in this period in related disciplines such as politics, history, literature and religion.
Pluralism on and off Course explains the concept of pluralism as a trend that strives to restrict centralism. The book classifies as pluralistic every trend that opposes uniformity, both in social and political structure and in the sphere of culture, the uniformity that centralism inevitably breeds. Organized into six chapters, this book particularly tackles pluralism in France, Britain, Germany, and United States. This text also describes the pluralistic elements in the socialist reconstruction of society. The rationality of pluralism is lastly discussed.
Author: John Tresch
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2012-02-06
In the years immediately following Napoleon’s defeat, French thinkers in all fields set their minds to the problem of how to recover from the long upheavals that had been set into motion by the French Revolution. Many challenged the Enlightenment’s emphasis on mechanics and questioned the rising power of machines, seeking a return to the organic unity of an earlier age and triggering the artistic and philosophical movement of romanticism. Previous scholars have viewed romanticism and industrialization in opposition, but in this groundbreaking volume John Tresch reveals how thoroughly entwined science and the arts were in early nineteenth-century France and how they worked together to unite a fractured society. Focusing on a set of celebrated technologies, including steam engines, electromagnetic and geophysical instruments, early photography, and mass-scale printing, Tresch looks at how new conceptions of energy, instrumentality, and association fueled such diverse developments as fantastic literature, popular astronomy, grand opera, positivism, utopian socialism, and the Revolution of 1848. He shows that those who attempted to fuse organicism and mechanism in various ways, including Alexander von Humboldt and Auguste Comte, charted a road not taken that resonates today. Essential reading for historians of science, intellectual and cultural historians of Europe, and literary and art historians, The Romantic Machine is poised to profoundly alter our understanding of the scientific and cultural landscape of the early nineteenth century.