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This important new book is the first balanced and sustained evaluation of Jurgen Habermas's major two-volume work The Theory of Communicative Action which has provoked a great deal of debate and controversy. It discusses specific aspects of the work, as well as Habermas's overall contribution to social and political thought. The book's last essay is a lengthy reply from Habermas to his critics, written especially for this volume.
Containing contributions from well-known and highly respected international theorists these essays make an outstanding addition to the available literature. This text will be of great importance in the reception and study of Habermas's work and will be used by students and academics in social theory, politics and philosophy.
Introduction: Axel Honneth and Hans Joas.
1. The Transformation of Critical Theory: Herbert Schnadelback.
2. Language and Society: Charles Taylor.
3. The Two Meanings of `Communicative' Rationality: Martin Seel Habermas and Critical Theory: Beyond the Marxian Dilemma?: Jeffrey Alexander.
4. Communicative Reason and Interest: Gunter Dux.
5. The Unhappy Marriage of Hermeneutics and Functionalism: Hans Joas Complexity and Democracy, or the Seducements of Systems Theory: Thomas McCarthy.
6. Communicative Action or the Mode for Communication for Society as a Whole: Hans-Peter Kruger.
7. The Linguistification of the Sacred and the Delinguistification of the Economy: Johannes Berger.
8. Modernity as Project and as Field of Tension: Johann P. Arnason.
10. A Reply: Jurgen Habermas.