The Ways of Power: Hermeneutics, Ethics and Social Criticism

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Paul Fairfield is assistant adjunct professor of philosophy at Queen's College in Ontario, Canada and, editor of Symposium, the journal of the Canadian Society for Hermeneutics and Postmodern Thought. He has also taught at McMaster University, the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. He is the author of Moral Selfhood in the Liberal Tradition (2000) and Theorizing Praxis: Studies in Hermeneutical Pragmatism ...

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Pittsburgh, PA 2004 Paperback First Paperback Edition New 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. This work advances a hermeneutical conception of ethics, one oriented particularly toward ... questions of power and the critique of power in the aftermath of foundationalism. Bringing into mutual interrogation such disparate traditions as hermeneutics, liberalism, critical theory and postmodernism, and such figures as Gadamer, Ricoeur, Habermas, Foucault, Nietzsche and Artistotle, Fairfield argues that the principal question of ethics is no longer how to ground practices and judgments on a secure epistemological foundation. Rather, what is of importance is how normative discourses rooted in tradition and invested with power may adopt a critical posture toward these same conditions without generating an impossible circularity. Fairfield asserts that the practice of social criticism is ultimately inseparable from that of hermeneutic interpretation; critique is a matter of perceiving and understanding contexts of moral action in ligh Read more Show Less

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Overview

About the Author

Paul Fairfield is assistant adjunct professor of philosophy at Queen's College in Ontario, Canada and, editor of Symposium, the journal of the Canadian Society for Hermeneutics and Postmodern Thought. He has also taught at McMaster University, the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. He is the author of Moral Selfhood in the Liberal Tradition (2000) and Theorizing Praxis: Studies in Hermeneutical Pragmatism (2000).

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What People Are Saying

Charles E. Scott
The Ways of Power is thought-provoking and contains an innovative argument for a "universal theory of justice.
— Charles E. Scott, Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Philosophy, Pennsylvania State University
David F. Gruber
This book is indeed thought provoking and ambitious in that it attempts to being together voices that speak to each other only with some difficulty.
— David F. Gruber, Professor of Philosophy, Truman State University
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780820703602
  • Publisher: Duquesne University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2004
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Ways of Power and the Question of Critique 1
1 The Will to Power and the Politics of Ressentiment 15
2 Power/Knowledge 43
3 The Critique of Ideology 67
4 The Practice of Criticism 97
5 Hermeneutical Ethical Theory 131
6 Conclusion 165
Notes 171
Bibliography 187
Index 203
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