Sense and Finitude: Encounters at the Limits of Language, Art, and the Political

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Sense and Finitude interrogates one of continental philosophy's central insights: the temporality or finitude of philosophical thought. Juxtaposing the views of such philosophers as Plato, Heidegger, Walter Benjamin, Gadamer, and Derrida on art, poetry, and non-Western cultures with the insights of those very artists, poets, and cultures interpreted by them, Alejandro A. Vallega elucidates a certain sensibility fundamental to philosophical thought once it has come face-to-face with its concrete finitude-in the sense that philosophical ideas are always exposed to interpretation, transformation, and loss. By addressing philosophy's exposure to experience beyond its own delimitations, Vallega shows how such investigations can enrich the philosophical enterprise.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Alejandro A. Vallega is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Latin American Studies at California State University Stanislaus. He is the author of Heidegger and the Issue of Space: Thinking on Exilic Grounds.

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Table of Contents

Illustrations ix

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction 1

Part I Unbounded Thoughts: Fecund Overflowing in Philosophy's Finitude

1 Four Meditations on Heidegger's Undergoing of Thought's Finitude 9

First Meditation: Abandonment: A Violent Encounter with Thought's Finitude 12

2 Second Meditation: The Decomposition of an Illusion and the Fecundity of Thinking 19

3 Third Meditation: Thought's Sensibility in its Finitude and its Exposed Word 27

4 Fourth Meditation: Thought's Ambiguous Finitude: Between Abyssal Fecund Thought and the Historical Destiny of the West 39

5 Exposed Memories: Towards Reading the History of Philosophy Beyond its Historical Destiny in the West 51

Part II Unbounded Words: Language in its Ephemeral and Concrete Finitude

6 Ephemeral Concrete Words: On the Translucence of the Philosophical Logos in Plato's Phaidros 65

7 The Tactility of Words (from Silent Gestures): Gadamer's Reading of Paul Celan's Atemkristall 81

8 Quand un Corps se met en OEuvre: The Word in the Flesh, at the Limit of Derrida's Reading of Antonin Artaud 103

Part III Unbounded Finitudes: Thought's Sensibility in Art and the Political

9 The Sensibility of Art in its Finitude: Undergoing the Disaster Through Benjamin's "Politics of Art" 123

10 Unbounded Spirits: From Solitude to Ethical Words in Hegel, Fanon, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez 139

11 Towards a Politics of Lightness 159

Notes 171

Index 207

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