The Idea of Continental Philosophy

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Continental Philosophy: An Introduction, 2nd Edition. Selected type: Paperback. Added to Your Shopping Cart. Out of stock.

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This is a dummy description. This book is a fully updated and expanded new edition of An Introduction to Continental Philosophy , first published in It provides a clear, concise and readable introduction to philosophy in the continental tradition. At the same time, it situates their thought within a coherent overall account of the development of continental philosophy since the Enlightenment. Table of contents Preface to the Second Edition.

Preface to the First Edition.

From Modernity to Enlightenment. The Critical Philosophy of Immanuel Kant. Continental Critics of Enlightenment. The Hegelian Synthesis. Feuerbach, Marx and Marxism. Is there a single language and style of philosophy? The geography of philosophy : Dialogues and misunderstandings between Western and non-Western traditions. Is there a difference between Western and non-Western conceptions and modes of philosophising? What are the reciprocal influences?

What is non-Western philosophy? Is there a defining feature of Western philosophy? What are the boundaries and intersections between philosophy and these other disciplines?

Continental Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

The histories of philosophy : Different conceptions and practises of philosophy in Antiquity, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and Modernity. What are the differences and similarities across epochs and traditions? What can past conceptions tell us? Like this: Like Loading Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:.

Email required Address never made public. Name required. Structuralism gave way to post-structuralism and, with Jacques Derrida, to deconstructionism.

Foucault examined issues of government control, madness and sexuality; Baudrillard raised questions on hyper-reality and simulacra, and Vattimo resurrected nihilism. The meta-narratives of German Idealism come sharply under scrutiny in postmodernism, for these overarching systems of meaning have, in the postmodern view, only left their hopefuls sadly disappointed. Postmodernism can now be seen as a main terminus within continental philosophy for continuing many of its classical traditions. In the late twentieth century philosophy of mind became one of the main concerns of analytic philosophy.

Hilary Putnam, one of the great pioneers of modern philosophy of mind, introduced ideas that he thought would solve the problem of how the mind and the brain relate.


He became one of the founders of functionalism , a theory which analyses mental states in terms of their function. David Chalmers, director of the Center for Consciousness at Australian National University, has argued that the mind cannot be reducible to the physical brain because of various hypothetical arguments, including the possibility of zombies.

All of these theories are within the tradition of analytic philosophy. Wittgenstein enters the philosophical scene with his analysis of language, fueling the anti-metaphysical fire of the Vienna Circle by postulating the criteria that language must mirror observable nature and nature alone, if it is to be considered meaningful. Over on the Continent, existentialism adopted many of the teachings of the phenomenologists and added issues of existence, freedom, angst and absurdity.

Ayer constructed various theories of knowledge and methods of logical analysis. In recent times postmodernism has emerged as a dominant strand of continental philosophy. On the analytic side, modern philosophy of mind has emerged as a strong movement which incorporates analytic thinking with biology, neuroscience, and physics.

Thus, continental philosophy started with German idealism, which was translated into phenomenology, reconstructed in existentialism, and is currently still in postmodernist mode. What are we to do with analytic and continental philosophy, then?

Analytic versus Continental Philosophy

If we are to keep a balance, we must understand that both camps have methods, trajectories, and emphasis that can be honored and incorporated into a synthesis. This is not to mean that we must believe everything. Rather, we should realize that there are correct and incorrect starting points, methods and answers in both analytic and continental philosophy.

Yet philosophy can also be done interchangeably? Although it may be possible to use both camps to construct a balanced philosophy of life, it becomes quite difficult once one gets into specialized fields. When anyone enters the philosophy of mind, for instance, they necessarily find themselves using the methods of analytic philosophy. Each camp has something unique to contribute to philosophy.

Analytic philosophy should be able to enter into phenomenology, existentialism, literature, and politics with the same enthusiasm as continental philosophy. It should also realize that philosophy is not without a history; philosophy is a historical movement which tackles social and political questions as well as more technical problems of logic and epistemology. To assume that analytic philosophy is above the social and historical currents of its time is to canonize a golden calf and ignore the wider reality. Similarly, the average person may not care about answering the Problem of Induction or the Liar Paradox, but may wonder what life, existence, and history means to her.

Continental philosophy may have some things to learn as well.

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

It might need to realize that all reasoning must assume that logic is meaningful and necessary; that language is intricately connected with our ability to convey meaning, and that epistemology is one of the most crucial areas to investigate: whenever we are making assertions or expounding propositions we act as if our ability to know is correct and justified.

It seems obvious that existence and Being are vital to philosophy, yet analytic philosophers might ask how we know that to be true. Continental philosophy may be forgetting those basics necessary for intelligible experience.

Analytic-Continental Split

Science, logic, and the analysis of language are not the only things that matter, but neither are literature, art, and history. What is the difference between a philosopher and a philanthropist?

The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy
The Idea of Continental Philosophy The Idea of Continental Philosophy

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