The Bounds of Reason: Habermas, Lyotard and Melanie Klein on Rationality

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Overview

What is the meaning of reason in our postmodern society today? Is reason a weapon of domination, or can it also serve as a means for emancipation? Is it possible for reason to understand its "other"--what it is not? Confronting such questions, Bounds of Reason is a compelling discussion of the limits and meaning of rationality as a tool for understanding the ideas of truth, justice and freedom. Emilia Steuerman explores the modernist and postmodernist controversy between Habermas and Lyotard to highlight the problems encountered both by a defense of reason and by the lack of meaning that haunts a world without it. Using Kleinian theory to examine the debate as it is manifested in the main philosophical themes of this century, Steuerman argues that a rational and ethical theory of justice must take into account that which is not rational, symmetrical or transparent--namely a primitive world of love and hatred which colors and shapes our perceptions.
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