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101. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Lesław Kawalec A Farewell to Professor Leszek Kołakowski (1927–2009)
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The author presents Leszek Kołakowski from the perspective of his private acquaintanceship, lasting for about 47 years, as a witty man and a workaholic. L. Kołakowski never formed a classic “school”, but there is something all his disciples share: a thesis, key to understanding his ideas, which holds that “THERE IS MORE THAN ONE CORRECT OPINION IN THE HUMANITIES”, i.e. we will ALWAYS have opinions for and against, which goes against any dogmatism, wherever it may appear; this also bears consequences in diagnosing the socio-political reality past and present.
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102. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Zofia Rosińska, Maciej Bańkowski Illuminating Life. Leszek Kołakowski’s Philosophy of Culture
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In his life and work, Leszek Kołakowski traversed many paths, some more and some less well-known. The main focus here is on Kołakowski’s involvement in what one may call an anthropological variant of philosophy of culture. Anthropological philosophy of culture bases on the following assumptions:1. Human conduct is determined by culture. There is neither humanity without culture nor culture without humans.2. Human conduct is by nature referential, in other words, the factual alone is not enough for humans who tend to reach beyond it in their search for the most elemental and ultimate truths.3. Culture is a dynamic phenomenon and a challenge on the path to self-awareness.4. Axiological sensitivity.5. The culture philosopher is immersed in the culture he studies and, by revealing that which it conceals, is a source of reflection on this culture. All these assumptions lie at the core of the philosophy of Leszek Kołakowski.
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103. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Andrzej Walicki Argument for a Balzan Prize for Leszek Kołakowski
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104. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Jarosław Kuisz Treading in Kołakowski’s Footsteps
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105. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Marta Bucholc Annulment
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106. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Janusz Dobieszewski On the Consolation Offered by Leszek Kołakowski’s Metaphysical Horror
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The paper is a critical review of Leszek Kołakowski’s book Metaphysical Horror. According to Kołakowski, the starting-point of metaphysical horror is the awareness of changeability, transience, contingency and fragility of the world and human existence in face of the overwhelming and abysmal face of Nothingness. According to Kołakowski, the inevitable urge to overcome metaphysical horror leads to the idea of the Absolute, which can appear in two forms: God and cogito.What underlies the present paper is disagreement with Kołakowski’s perspective of metaphysical horror that leads to question about reasons for praise for human mortality and human relationship towards Nothingness, reasons for an acceptance of the awaiting existential horror.
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107. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Jakub K. Szamałek My Last Coffee with Professor Kołakowski
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108. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Andrew Targowski Leszek Kołakowski in the West and in Poland
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109. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Marcin Król Intro to What Does Leszek Kołakowski Teach Us?
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110. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Werner Krieglstein Taming the Horror of Time
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111. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 7/8
Marek Siemek, Maciej Bańkowski Laudatio on the Renewal of Leszek Kołakowski’s Ph.D. at the University of Warsaw
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112. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Magdalena Szkwarek, Lesław Kawalec Polish Jews’ Diaspora in Latin America until the Outbreak of World War II
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People of Jewish origin arrived in the American Continent as early as 15th century and (in various times and with varying intensity but incessantly) have participated in shaping the states and societies on the continent. A fact little known in Poland, Jews and their culture are inherent in Latin American reality. The paper attempts to provide an insight into Ashkenazic Diaspora (particularly its section coming from Poland and the partitioned Polish lands before 1918) in its Latin American dimension.
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113. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Eugeniusz Górski, Lesław Kawalec Globalization and Universalism from the Perspective of Latin America and Eastern Europe
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The paper discusses the place occupied by Latin America and Eastern Europe in the contemporary world-system in the era of increasing globalization. It discusses the dominant types of consciousness in both parts of the world, where a tendency to overcome dependence and peripheral position are noticeable as is a desire for democracy and foreign relations based on partnership. What is long raised and very characteristic for thinkers coming from those very different regions of the globe are attempts to create a new universalistic philosophy, more or less utopian, for the whole of mankind.
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114. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Halina Walentowicz, Lesław Kawalec On Two Designs of “brushing history against the grain”: Michael Foucault and the Frankfurt School
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The paper develops and provides rationale for M. Foucault’s proposition of there being far-reaching theoretical convergences between his concept of Genealogy and the Critical Theory by Frankfurt School philosophers. In the author’s view, the similarities are marked in three areas:1. historical discourse, severing the ties with a traditional interpretation of history, i.e. one that makes the perspective of power absolute;2. an ambiguous approach to the Enlightenment as expressed in a rejection of the doctrine while preserving Enlightenment ethos;3. criticism of the anthropology that assumes a primacy of mind over matter on the premise of exposing a self-conscious subject as a product of the harnessing of Nature. Wile emphasizing the spiritual kinship between Foucault and the philosophers of the Frankfurt School, the author does record significant differences, mostly concerning the nature of the historical process, an expression of the issue of power and the relation between power and knowledge.
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115. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Krystyna Najder-Stefaniak The Pitfalls of Provisionality
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The article outlines two possible human “responses” to the general situation of today’s world. One, here named “provisional culture”, abandons continuity for momentariness, the other—ecological culture—underscores the benefits of duration. The first derives from the modern thought paradigm, the second from the paradigm of ecological thought.The author points to these two culture models’ relation to different time concepts. She notes that by resigning continuity between the past, present and future, humanity risks losing its sense of responsibility and access to ethics—that what “ought to be”. Also, lost in this case are creative thought and creative activity. Paradoxically, the provisional culture trap, in which there is no room for creativity, can only be escaped by means of the creative updating of time in its entirety. Such updating takes effect in ecological culture grown from thought ordained by the eco-system metaphor.
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116. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Tadeusz Pieńkowski The Katyń Massacre. Katyń—a Crime that Continues
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117. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 20 > Issue: 9/10
Paweł Pasieka, Michael Hamerski Dialogue and Persuasion
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The article is an analysis of the different types of rationality forming the basis of “rational dialogue”. It presents the positions of Plato and the sophists as well as modern attempts to revive this tradition. The Platonic model (ideal) of philosophy as that which is objectively confronted with the strategies of a rational debate taking place within conditions of uncertainty (probable knowledge) and risk.
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118. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 14 > Issue: 10/12
Andrew Targowski The Civilization Index
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Before one can speculate about a new world order and “a clash of civilizations”, or “the end of history”, it is necessary to develop an appropriate set of measures to compare human competition in world politics and economy. Components and the generic model of an autonomous civilization is defined for eight civilizations recognized at the beginning of the 21st century. Each component of contemporary civilizations is numerically estimated in order to construct the civilization index. A comparative analysis of 8 civilizations’ indexes is provided in order to define strategies for the civilization development within 3 zones of encounters: clashes, modernization, and westernization. Two layers of world civilizations are defined and the dynamics of world civilization at the beginning of the 3rd Millennium is modeled. Based on that dynamics, the challenges for civilizations and peoples conclude the paper.
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119. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 14 > Issue: 10/12
Władysław Stróżewski Rev. Wacław Hryniewicz: Hope Teaches Differently
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These are reflections on Rev. Professor Hryniewicz’s substantial essay presented by an eminent historian of philosophy.
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120. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 14 > Issue: 10/12
Wacław Hryniewicz Hope for Man and the Universe. On Some Forgotten Aspects of Christian Universalism
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The paper attempts to show that Christian hope is not a product of religious fantasy. It finds today an ally in the dialogue with the natural sciences which started in recent years on the topic of the ultimate destiny of the world. The natural sciences have confirmed that the universe is doomed to physical annihilation. Humanity with its cultural riches, scientists say, is only an episode in universal history and doomed to perish. Hence, if the Earth is nothing more than an island of rationality in a cosmic void, then the only thing we can do is to keep up a heroic attitude worthy of human beings towards our own fragile existence. Contemporary science’s visions of the future are pessimistic: abundant, though short-lived, evolution culminating in a sense of final futility and the ultimate destruction of all life in the universe. Such forecasts question religion’s claims for the eschatological transformation of all creation. Christian eschatology does not accept, however, reductionist presuppositions about the very nature of reality. The universe contains levels of meaning far richer than what we have been able to discover sofar. Theology’s task is not to provide easy consolation, or generate false hopes. It has a good reason to avoid catastrophism, and maintain calm in its strivings to keep up our faith in God’s concern for the destiny of all His creatures. Theologians have to take a serious stand on the very concept of finitude, furthered by natural and social sciences. This, in turn, will require critical review of such concepts as the world’s future in God, hope and new creation. This effort must be undertaken in dialogue with the scientific views of the world’s finitude. Both sides are prone to stereotype judgements and shallow answers which must be corrected in consideration of the complexity of the issue at hand. Christian theology has to justify its claim to truth, but certainly not by launching battles with science. Christian hope shows the new creation not as annihilation and destruction of the old but as its ultimate transfiguration and salvific transformation. It speaks about the paradox of continuity/discontinuity in this new universe’s emergence. Special attention is paid in the paper to the “logical” structure of matter. If the world ofultimate events is, in fact, to be a new world of the resurrection, created by transition into new reality, then certain scientific suggestions and data on the present world’s processes could prove helpful in grasping the truly cosmic dimensions of Christian hope. Crucial here will not so much be particular data but rather a sort of meta-science allowing the deduction of general concepts from the detailed achievements of scientific research. Such generalized insights include today the following elements: 1) the dynamic concept of physical reality, 2) the relationality of its processes and, 3) a deeper understanding of the complexity of matter/energy as carriers of a specific information-bearing pattern. It appears that there are some similarities in science’s and theology’s strivings for a deeper understanding of the truth of reality, which continues to evade our theories and teaches us modesty. Neither method nor concept has yet managed to explaineverything. There exists no universal key to a comprehensive interpretation. The postulate to avoid reductionism in approaching the manifold richness of reality is addressed to scientists and theologians alike.
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