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Subjectivity and Truth

Author: Michel Foucault
Publisher: Springer
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“The working hypothesis is this: it is true that sexuality as experience is obviously not independent of codes and systems of prohibitions, but it needs to be recalled straightaway that these codes are astonishingly stable, continuous, and slow to change. It needs to be recalled also that the way in which they are observed or transgressed also seems to be very stable and very repetitive. On the other hand, the point of historical mobility, what no doubt change most often, what are most fragile, are modalities of experience.” - Michel Foucault In 1981 Foucault delivered a course of lectures which marked a decisive reorientation in his thought and of the project of a History of Sexuality outlined in 1976. It was in these lectures that arts of living became the focal point around which he developed a new way of thinking about subjectivity. It was also the moment when Foucault problematized a conception of ethics understood as the patient elaboration of a relationship of self to self. It was the study of the sexual experience of the Ancients that made these new conceptual developments possible. Within this framework, Foucault examined medical writings, tracts on marriage, the philosophy of love, or the prognostic value of erotic dreams, for evidence of a structuration of the subject in his relationship to pleasures (aphrodisia) which is prior to the modern construction of a science of sexuality as well as to the Christian fearful obsession with the flesh. What was actually at stake was establishing that the imposition of a scrupulous and interminable hermeneutics of desire was the invention of Christianity. But to do this it was necessary to establish the irreducible specificity of ancient techniques of self. In these lectures, which clearly foreshadow The Use of Pleasures and The Care of Self, Foucault examines the Greek subordination of gender differences to the primacy of an opposition between active and passive, as well as the development by Imperial stoicism of a model of the conjugal bond which advocates unwavering fidelity and shared feelings and which leads to the disqualification of homosexuality.


Subjectivity and Perspective in Truth Theoretic Semantics

Author: Peter Lasersohn
Publisher: Oxford University Press
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This book explores linguistic and philosophical issues presented by sentences expressing personal taste, such as Roller coasters are fun, or Licorice is tasty. Standard semantic theories explain the meanings of sentences by specifying the conditions under which they are true; here, Peter Lasersohn asks how we can account for sentences that are concerned with matters of opinion rather than matters of fact. He argues that a truth-theoretic semantic theory is appropriate even for sentences like these, but that for such sentences, truth and falsity must be assigned relative to perspectives, rather than absolutely. The book provides a detailed and explicit formal grammar, working out the implications of this conception of truth both for simple sentences and for reports of mental attitude. The semantic analysis is paired with a pragmatic theory explaining what it means to assert a sentence which is true or false only relativistically, and with a speculative account of the functional motivation for a relativized notion of truth.


Questioning Foundations

Author: Hugh J. Silverman
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First published in 1993. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor and Francis, an informa company.


Subjectivity within Cultural Historical Approach

Author: Fernando González Rey
Publisher: Springer
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This book offers a theoretical and epistemological-methodological framework as an alternative approach to the instrumental-descriptive methodology that has prevailed in psychology to date. It discusses the differences between the proposed approach and other theoretical and methodological positions, such as discourse analysis, phenomenology and hermeneutics. Further, it puts forward a proposal that allows the demands of studying subjectivity to be addressed from a cultural-historical standpoint. The book mainly highlights case studies that have been conducted in various countries, and which employ or depart from the theoretical, epistemological and methodological proposals that guide this book. The research discussed here introduces readers to new discussions on theoretical and methodological issues in subjectivity that have increasingly attracted interest.


Foucault and the Modern International

Author: Philippe Bonditti
Publisher: Springer
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This book addresses the possibilities of analyzing the modern international through the thought of Michel Foucault. The broad range of authors brought together in this volume question four of the most self-evident characteristics of our contemporary world-'international', 'neoliberal', 'biopolitical' and 'global'- and thus fill significant gaps in both international and Foucault studies. The chapters discuss what a Foucauldian perspective does or does not offer for understanding international phenomena while also questioning many appropriations of Foucault's work. This transdisciplinary volume will serve as a reference for both scholars and students of international relations, international political sociology, international political economy, political theory/philosophy and critical theory more generally.


Deleuze and the Schizoanalysis of Feminism

Author: Cheri Carr
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
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The schizoanalytic method and the lines of flight that it has inspired align with contemporary feminist concerns and practices in productive and revealing ways in this ground-breaking collection. To address the relevance of schizoanalysis for contemporary developments in new materialism, affect theory, transnational feminism, political ontology, feminist critiques of globalization and capitalism, feminist pedagogy, and ethics, the overarching questions explored are: What can schizoanalysis do for feminist theory? What would a feminist schizoanalysis look like? Is it possible to perform a schizoanalysis of feminism? How do schizoanalytic-feminist alliances create new ways of understanding the future, sexuality and bodily transformation, political resistance, new subjectivities, and ethical relationships? Highlighting the strength, richness, and diversity of feminist perspectives this collection shows how issues of re-conceiving desire, theorizing embodiment and materiality, interrogating the status of sexuality and difference, decentring feminist practice to be inclusive of transnational and de-colonial concerns, critiques of binary logic and gender, transversal politics, and the need for new political visions in light of advanced capitalism are all enhanced by this alliance.


The Givenness of Desire

Author: Randall S. Rosenberg
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
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In The Givenness of Desire, Randall S. Rosenberg examines the human desire for God through the lens of Lonergan’s "concrete subjectivity." Rosenberg engages and integrates two major scholarly developments: the tension between Neo-Thomists and scholars of Henri de Lubac over our natural desire to see God and the theological appropriation of the mimetic theory of René Girard, with an emphasis on the saints as models of desire. With Lonergan as an integrating thread, the author engages a variety of thinkers, including Hans Urs von Balthasar, Jean-Luc Marion, René Girard, James Alison, Lawrence Feingold, and John Milbank, among others. The theme of concrete subjectivity helps to resist the tendency of equating too easily the natural desire for being with the natural desire for God without at the same time acknowledging the widespread distortion of desire found in the consumer culture that infects contemporary life. The Givenness of Desire investigates our paradoxical desire for God that is rooted in both the natural and supernatural.


Mythology Madness and Laughter

Author: Markus Gabriel
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
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Mythology, Madness and Laughter: Subjectivity in German Idealism explores some long neglected but crucial themes in German idealism. Markus Gabriel, one of the most exciting young voices in contemporary philosophy, and Slavoj Žižek, the celebrated contemporary philosopher and cultural critic, show how these themes impact on the problematic relations between being and appearance, reflection and the absolute, insight and ideology, contingency and necessity, subjectivity, truth, habit and freedom. Engaging with three central figures of the German idealist movement, Hegel, Schelling, and Fichte, Gabriel, and Žižek, who here shows himself to be one of the most erudite and important scholars of German idealism, ask how is it possible for Being to appear in reflection without falling back into traditional metaphysics. By applying idealistic theories of reflection and concrete subjectivity, including the problem of madness and everydayness in Hegel, this hugely important book aims to reinvigorate a philosophy of finitude and contingency, topics at the forefront of contemporary European philosophy. MARKUS GABRIEL is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the New School for Social Research, NY. He has published a number of books and journal articles in German, including Der Mensch im Mythos (De Gruyter, 2006), and Das Absolute und die Welt in Schellings Freiheitsschrift (Bonn University Press, 2006).


Adopted Women and Biological Fathers

Author: Elizabeth Hughes
Publisher: Routledge
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Adopted Women and Biological Fathers offers a critical and deconstructive challenge to the dominant notions of adoptive identity. The author explores adoptive women’s experiences of meeting their biological fathers and reflects on personal narratives to give an authoritative overview of both the field of adoption and the specific history of adoption reunion. This book takes as its focus the narratives of 14 adopted women, as well as the partly fictionalised story of the author and examines their experiences of birth father reunion in an attempt to dissect the ways in which we understand adoptive female subjectivity through a psychosocial lens. Opening a space for thinking about the role of the discursively neglected biological father, this book exposes the enigmatic dimensions of this figure and how telling the relational story of 'reconciliation' might be used to complicate wider categories of subjective completeness, belonging, and truth. This book attempts to subvert the culturally normative unifying system of the mother-child bond, and prompts the reader to think about what the biological father might represent and how his role in relation to adoptive female subjects may be understood. This book will be essential reading for those in critical psychology, gender studies, narrative work, sociology and psychosocial studies, as well as appealing to anyone interested in adoption issues and female subjectivity.


Closer to the Truth Than Any Fact

Author: Jennifer Jensen Wallach
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
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Although historians frequently use memoirs as source material, too often they confine such usage to the anecdotal, and there is little methodological literature regarding the genre’s possibilities and limitations. This study articulates an approach to using memoirs as instruments of historical understanding. Jennifer Jensen Wallach applies these principles to a body of memoirs about life in the American South during Jim Crow segregation, including works by Zora Neale Hurston, Willie Morris, Lillian Smith, Henry Louis Gates Jr., William Alexander Percy, and Richard Wright. Wallach argues that the field of autobiography studies, which is currently dominated by literary critics, needs a new theoretical framework that allows historians, too, to benefit from the interpretation of life writing. Her most provocative claim is that, due to the aesthetic power of literary language, skilled creative writers are uniquely positioned to capture the complexities of another time and another place. Through techniques such as metaphor and irony, memoirists collectively give their readers an empathetic understanding of life during the era of segregation. Although these reminiscences bear certain similarities, it becomes clear that the South as it was remembered by each is hardly the same place.