Weakness: A Literary and Philosophical History

Weakness: A Literary and Philosophical History

by Michael O'Sullivan
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Overview

Weakness: A Literary and Philosophical History by Michael O'Sullivan

Examining the nature of weakness has inspired some of the most influential aesthetic and philosophical portraits of the human condition. By reading a selection of canonical literary and philosophical texts, Michael O'Sullivan charts a history of responses to the experience and exploration of weakness.

Beginning with Plato and Aristotle, this first book-length study of the concept explores weakness as it is interpreted by Lao Tzu, Nietzsche, Derrida, the Romantics, Dickens and the Modernists. It examines what feminist writers Simone de Beauvoir and Luce Irigaray have made of the gendered biomythology constructed around the figure of the "weaker vessel" and it considers related notions such as im-potentiality, a "syntax of weakness" and human vulnerability in the work of Agamben, Beckett and Coetzee.

Through analysis of these differing versions of weakness, O'Sullivan's study challenges the popular myth that aligns masculine identity with strength and force and presents a humane weakness as a guiding motif for debates in ethics.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781472568359
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Publication date: 04/10/2014
Series: Continuum Literary Studies Series
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Michael O'Sullivan is Assistant Professor in English at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He is author of Michel Henry: Incarnation, Barbarism and Belief (Peter Lang, 2006).

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Weakness: A Literary and Philosophical History 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"No, Miss plsse come here."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She gets up shakily wearing jeans and a hoodie despite the humidity.