Very Little ... Almost Nothing: Death, Philosophy and Literature / Edition 2

Very Little ... Almost Nothing: Death, Philosophy and Literature / Edition 2

by Simon Critchley
     
 

ISBN-10: 0415340497

ISBN-13: 9780415340496

Pub. Date: 07/01/2004

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

Very Little ... Almost Nothing puts the question of the meaning of life back at the centre of intellectual debate. Its central concern is how we can find a meaning to human finitude without recourse to anything that transcends that finitude. A profound but secular meditation on the theme of death, Critchley traces the idea of nihilism through Blanchot,

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Overview

Very Little ... Almost Nothing puts the question of the meaning of life back at the centre of intellectual debate. Its central concern is how we can find a meaning to human finitude without recourse to anything that transcends that finitude. A profound but secular meditation on the theme of death, Critchley traces the idea of nihilism through Blanchot, Levinas, Jena Romanticism and Cavell, culminating in a reading of Beckett, in many ways the hero of the book.
In this second edition, Simon Critchley has added a revealing and extended new preface, and a new chapter on Wallace Stevens which reflects on the idea of poetry as philosophy.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415340496
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
07/01/2004
Series:
Warwick Studies in European Philosophy Series
Edition description:
REV
Pages:
308
Sales rank:
1,305,462
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.64(d)

Table of Contents

Abbreviationsxi
Preface to Second Edition: As my father, I have already diedxv
Preamble: Travels in Nihilon1
(a)Philosophy begins in disappointment2
(b)Pre-Nietzschean nihilism4
(c)Nietzschean nihilism8
(d)Responding to nihilism: five possibilities11
(e)Heidegger's transformation of Nietzschean nihilism15
(f)Heidegger contra Junger18
(g)Impossible redemption: Adorno on nihilism21
(h)Learning how to die--the argument29
Lecture 1Il y a35
(a)Reading Blanchot35
(b)How is literature possible?40
(c)Orpheus, or the law of desire48
(d)Blanchot's genealogy of morals: exteriority as desire, exteriority as law52
(e)Il y a--the origin of the artwork56
(i)first slope--Hegel avec Sade57
(ii)second slope--a fate worse than death63
(iii)ambiguity--Blanchot's secret71
(f)The (im)possibility of death--or, how would Blanchot read Blanchot if he were not Blanchot?77
(g)Holding Levinas's hand to Blanchot's fire85
(i)a dying future85
(ii)atheist transcendence89
Lecture 2Unworking romanticism99
(a)Our naivete99
(i)Kantian fragmentation102
(ii)deepest naivete--political romanticism105
(iii)Hegel, Schlegel110
(iv)romantic modernity113
(b)Digression I: Imagination as resistance (Wallace Stevens)114
(c)Romantic ambiguity123
(i)the fragment125
(ii)wit and irony131
(iii)the non-romantic essence of romanticism135
(d)Cavell's 'romanticism'138
(i)the romanticization of everyday life138
(ii)Emerson as the literary absolute141
(e)Digression II: Why Stanley loves America and why we should too147
(f)Cavell's romanticism154
(i)I live my scepticism155
(ii)Cavell's tragic wisdom157
(iii)finiteness, limitedness161
Lecture 3Know happiness--on Beckett165
(a)Beckett and philosophical interpretation165
(b)The dredging machine (Derrida)169
(c)The meaning of meaninglessness and the paradoxical task of interpretation (Adorno I)172
(d)Hope against hope--the elevation of social criticism to the level of form (Adorno II)181
(e)Nothing is funnier than unhappiness--Beckett's laughter (Adorno III)184
(f)Storytime, time of death (Molloy, Malone Dies)188
(g)My old aporetics--the syntax of weakness (The Unnameable)195
(h)Who speaks? Not I (Blanchot)202
(i)No happiness? (Cavell)207
Lecture 4The philosophical significance of a poem--on Wallace Stevens215
Notes237
Acknowledgments270
Index273

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