In profiles of six leading twentieth-century thinkers—Martin Heidegger, Carl Schmitt, Walter Benjamin, Alexandre Kojève, Michel Foucault, and Jacques Derrida—Mark Lilla explores the psychology of political commitment. As continental Europe gave birth to two great ideological systems in the twentieth century, communism and fascism, it also gave birth to a new social type, the philotyrannical intellectual. Lilla shows how these thinkers were not only grappling with enduring philosophical questions, they were also writing out of their own experiences and passions. These profiles demonstrate how intellectuals can be driven into a political sphere they scarcely understand, with momentous results.
In a new afterword, Lilla traces how the intellectual world has changed since the end of the cold war. The ideological passions of the past have been replaced in the West, he argues, by a dogma of individual autonomy and freedom that both obscures the historical forces at work in the present and sanctions ignorance about them, leaving us ill-equipped to understand those who are inflamed by the new global ideologies of our time.
|Publisher:||New York Review Books|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.60(d)|
About the Author
Table of Contents
Chapter I Martin Heidegger Hannah Arendt Karl Jaspers 1
Chapter II Carl Schmitt 47
Chapter III Walter Benjamin 77
Chapter IV Alexandre Kojève 113
Chapter V Michel Foucault 137
Chapter VI Jacques Derrida 159
Epilogue: The Lure of Syracuse 191
Afterword: Sola Fide 217