Fragments: Essays in Subjectivity, Individuality, and Autonomy

Overview

The possibilities for philosophy have never been greater and more fruitful than now - and never more tragically squandered. Philosophy can become relevant once again, suggests Pedro Blas González, if we drop the pointless analytical hair-splitting and self-referential word play, and the game of using it in an intellectual refutation of reality. No amount or degree of fashionable "theory" can succeed in negating reality... rather, philosophy's gifts shine through when we ask it to offer insight into questions of ...
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Overview

The possibilities for philosophy have never been greater and more fruitful than now - and never more tragically squandered. Philosophy can become relevant once again, suggests Pedro Blas González, if we drop the pointless analytical hair-splitting and self-referential word play, and the game of using it in an intellectual refutation of reality. No amount or degree of fashionable "theory" can succeed in negating reality... rather, philosophy's gifts shine through when we ask it to offer insight into questions of vital concerns for individuals. Despite the efforts of positivist thinkers to apply the methods of science to human consciousness, science and the humanities are not the same. Technical problems are closed-ended in scope, that is, they are solvable, whereas existential questions are open-ended and are to be re-discovered by everyone on their own terms. Technical questions are often easier to address and correct than human questions. And today, we look to science not so much for Truth as for an ever-expanding realm of technology. It is philosophy that can contribute to our understanding of our existence. Every human life - human existence, when viewed from the inside out - is a fragment of reality, but a central fragment nonetheless. The nobility of the philosophical vocation is best appreciated when it is viewed as a tool in the service of life. What is at stake, then, is nothing less than the soul of man, not as an empty caricature set up by "theory" and its creators, but as a vital possibility. In a series of essays González takes a fresh look at the notion of subjectivity and the nature of the self, through the lenses of Phenomenology, Existentialism, and philosophicalaspects of literature. With references to the Sumerian legend of Gilgamesh, Socrates' attempts to ground all knowledge in self-knowledge, Gabriel Marcel's The Mystery of Being, Eric Ambler, and Camus and Sartre, he ponders mankind's efforts to address the existential problems that still confront every thoughtful person. This is a nuanced consideration of the wisdom to be found through literature, a call for "independence within interdependence," and an invitation to explore deeper levels of existence. * Pedro Blas González is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Barry University in Miami. His areas of specialization include Continental philosophy, specifically: Phenomenology, Existentialism, and philosophical aspects of literature. His latest book, Human Existence as Radical Reality: Ortega's Philosophy of Subjectivity, was published by Paragon House, 2005.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780875863719
  • Publisher: Algora Publishing
  • Publication date: 6/28/2005
  • Pages: 200
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.63 (d)

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