Reason's Grief: An Essay on Tragedy and Value

Reason's Grief: An Essay on Tragedy and Value

by George W. Harris
     
 

ISBN-10: 0521863287

ISBN-13: 9780521863285

Pub. Date: 06/30/2006

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Reason's Grief takes W. B. Yeats's comment that we begin to live only when we have conceived life as tragedy as a call for a tragic ethics, something the modern West has yet to produce. Harris argues that we must turn away from religious understandings of tragedy and the human condition and realize that our species will occupy a very brief period of history, at some…  See more details below

Overview

Reason's Grief takes W. B. Yeats's comment that we begin to live only when we have conceived life as tragedy as a call for a tragic ethics, something the modern West has yet to produce. Harris argues that we must turn away from religious understandings of tragedy and the human condition and realize that our species will occupy a very brief period of history, at some point to disappear without a trace. We must accept an ethical perspective that avoids pernicious fantasies about ultimate redemption but that sees tragic loss as a permanent and pervasive aspect of our daily lives, yet finds a way to think, feel and act with both passion and hope. Reason's Grief takes us back through the history of our thinking about value to find our way. The call is for nothing less than a paradigm shift for understanding both tragedy and ethics.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521863285
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
06/30/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
310
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 1.02(d)

Table of Contents

An aesthetic prelude1
1The problem of tragedy18
2The dubious ubiquity of practical reason42
3Nihilism63
4Pessimism86
5Monism : an epitaph110
6Moralism and the inconstancy of value151
7Moralism and the impurity of value174
8Best life pluralism and reason's regret199
9Tragic pluralism and reason's grief231
10Postscript on the future : the idea of progress and the avoidance of despair262

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