Icarus Fallen: The Search for Meaning in an Uncertain World

Icarus Fallen: The Search for Meaning in an Uncertain World

by Chantal Delsol
     
 

ISBN-10: 1935191691

ISBN-13: 9781935191698

Pub. Date: 03/15/2010

Publisher: ISI Books

It would be difficult to find a more perceptive description of Western man and the world he now inhabits than that provided by Chantal Delsol in Icarus Fallen: The Search for Meaning in an Uncertain World. With style and lucidity, Delsol likens contemporary Western man to the mythical figure Icarus, fallen back to earth after trying to reach the sun,

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Overview

It would be difficult to find a more perceptive description of Western man and the world he now inhabits than that provided by Chantal Delsol in Icarus Fallen: The Search for Meaning in an Uncertain World. With style and lucidity, Delsol likens contemporary Western man to the mythical figure Icarus, fallen back to earth after trying to reach the sun, alive but badly shaken and confused. During the twentieth century, Delsol argues, man flew too closely to the sun of utopian ideology. Having been burned, he is now groping for a way to orient himself. But the ideas he once held so dear—inevitable progress, the possibility of limitless social and self-transformation—are no longer believable, and he has, for the most part, long since rejected the religious tradition that might now have provided an anchor.

Delsol's portrait is engrossing. She explains how we have come simultaneously to embrace the "good" but reject the "true"; how we have sacralized rights and democracy; and how we have lost our sense of the tragic and embraced the idea of "zero risk." Already a well-known political thinker in her native France, this is Delsol's first book to appear in English. Icarus Fallen should establish her as one of the most insightful social and cultural writers working on either side of the Atlantic.

"This is simply the best book about the problems of modern man since Christopher Lasch's Culture of Narcissism. It is so crammed with truth and insight that, as someone once said of Chesterton, every line deserves a review."
The American Conservative

"An extensive evaluation of the pitfalls of modern times and the strict limits on human virtues, Icarus Fallen, is strongly recommended reading for students of 20th Century Philosophy, Politics, and History."
Wisconsin Bookwatch 
 

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781935191698
Publisher:
ISI Books
Publication date:
03/15/2010
Series:
Crosscurrents Series
Edition description:
2nd Edition
Pages:
282
Sales rank:
1,444,477
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword
Translator's Preface
Author's Preface to the English Edition
Introduction
Pt. 1A Condition Deprived of Meaning
Ch. 1Existence as Sign3
Ch. 2The Rejection of the Figures of Existence15
Ch. 3Black Markets25
Ch. 4The Danger of a Return to Essentialism33
Pt. 2The Revelations of the Devil
Ch. 5The Good without the True45
Ch. 6The Morality of Complacency65
Ch. 7A Morality of Emotion and Indignation73
Ch. 8The Clandestine Ideology of Our Time83
Pt. 3The Urgent Need for a New Anthropology
Ch. 9Is Democracy Unsurpassable?93
Ch. 10The Rejection of Worldviews103
Ch. 11The Fear of Decision-Making113
Ch. 12The Sacralization of Rights121
Ch. 13Utopian Equality139
Ch. 14Production and Care-Giving149
Pt. 4Mastering the World in a Different Way
Ch. 15Fallen from the Heights161
Ch. 16Fragmented Existence171
Ch. 17God in Exile187
Ch. 18The Return of an Uncertain World203
Ch. 19On Vigilance219
Conclusion237
Notes243
Index247

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