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81. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Howard Ponzer Reconciliation in Hegel’s Speculative Idealism
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In the following, the author argues that Hegel’s speculative idealism attempts to reconcile the competing philosophical positions of idealism and realism.Through an examination, first, of current scholarship and, second, of Hegel’s critique of the “Ideal of Pure Reason” in Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, the author shows that one of Hegel’s main criticisms is that the exclusion of the thing-in-itself denies realism. The author argues that Hegel’s response to the problem of the thing-in-itself is to affirm realism. The author concludes by demonstrating how Hegel’s concept of Geist reconciles idealism and realism.
82. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Walter Brogan Letter from the Editor
83. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Kelly Oliver Strange Kinship: Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty on Animals
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The development of the emerging science of ecology influenced the later work of both Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty. Both use zoology, biology, and ecology intheir attempts to navigate between mechanism and vitalism, but their interpretations and use of the life sciences take them on divergent paths and lead them to radically different conclusions regarding the relationship between man and animal. This essay takes up the problematic of kinship with animals in Heidegger and Merleau-Ponty. Beyond the texts of these two thinkers are the more general stakes of the relationships between humans and animals and the question of whether or not animals can be our kin.
84. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Jessica Wiskus The Universality of the Sensible: On Plato and the Musical Idea according to Merleau-Ponty
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In reassessing the relationship between the ideal and the sensible realms, Merleau-Ponty’s later work (Notes de cours 1958–1959 et 1960–1961 and The Visibleand the Invisible) investigates the “musical idea” of Proust. This idea resembles that of the chora in the Timaeus with respect to its institution of a productive “space” between the ideal and the sensible realms. However, because the musical idea attains its status as an idea through repeated initiation in the sensible world, it transgresses the temporal structures described in the Timaeus. Indeed, the musical idea discloses not a “beginning” of time but a poetic—creative—past.
85. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Silvia Benso Aesth-ethics: Levinas, Plato, and Art
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Levinas’s most important contribution to contemporary philosophy is his continual vindication of the primacy of the ethical. For the contemporary reader, educated in the shadow of the Nietzschean thought that existence as will to power is art, this claim comes as an uneasy surprise. What is the place of the aesthetic within the preeminence of the ethical in Levinas’s philosophy? Or, more specifically, what is, for Levinas, the place of art in relation to the ethical? Through a Levinasian reading of Plato, and a Platonic reading of Levinas, the paper argues in favor of Paul Celan’s statement that there is not “any basic difference . . . between a handshake and a poem.”
86. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Sara Brill Politics and Exorbitant Platonism
87. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Pascal Massie Between Past and Future: Aristotle and the Division of Time
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Time prevents being from forming a totality. Whenever there is time fragmentation and multiplicity occur. Yet, there also ought to be continuity since it is thesame being that was, is and will be. Because of time, being must be both identical and different. This is the key problem that Aristotle attempts to resolve in his discussion of time in Book IV of the Physics. This essay considers three privileged notions: limit, number and ecstasies on which Aristotle relies at crucial moments of his inquiry and shows (1) that limit, number, and ecstasies are actually three ways of approaching the same phenomenon, and (2) how they allow Aristotle to reconcile divisibility and indivisibility.
88. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Suzanne Stern-Gillet Dual Selfhood and Self-Perfection in the Enneads
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Plotinus’s theory of dual selfhood has ethical norms built into it, all of which derive from the ontological superiority of the higher (or undescended) soul in us overthe body-soul compound. The moral life, as it is presented in the Enneads, is a life of self-perfection, devoted to the care of the higher self. Such a conception of morality is prone to strike modern readers as either ‘egoistic’ or unduly austere. If there is no doubt that Plotinus’s ethics is exceptionally austere, it will be argued below that it is not ‘egoistic.’ To that effect, the following questions will be addressed: Are the virtues, civic as well as purificatory, mere means to Plotinus’s metaphysically conceived ethical goal? To what extent must the lower self abnegate itself so as to enable the higher self to ascend to Intellect and beyond? And if self-perfection lies at the centre of the Plotinian moral life, is there any conceptual room left in it for other-regarding norms of conduct? A close reading of selected passages from Plotinus’s tractate I.2[19] On Virtues and tractate VI.8[39] On Free Will and the Will of the One will, it is claimed, bring elements of answer to these questions.
89. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Peter Warnek Plato’s Other (Socratic) Beginning
90. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Dror Post Heraclitus’s Hope for the Unhoped
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The Concept “hope,” (Greek), appears in two of Heraclitus’s fragments. This essay offers an attentive reading of these fragments and examines the role of hope in Heraclitus’s thinking. The essay is divided into two parts. The first part examines the meaning of the Greek notion for hope, (Greek), by looking into archaic and classical sources, particularly the myth about the origin of hope in Hesiod’s Works and Days. Based upon the renewed understanding of the concept, the second part of the essay examines Heraclitus’s use of the concept of hope and demonstrates the central role of hope in Heraclitus’s thinking.
91. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Drew A. Hyland To the Verge: On the Work Of John Sallis
92. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Alessandra Fussi Love of the Good, Love of the Whole: Diotima’s Response to Aristophanes in Plato’s Symposium
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Diotima criticizes, but does not refute, Aristophanes’ thesis that love is desire for completeness. Her argument incorporates that thesis within a more complextheory: eros is desire for the permanent possession of the good, and hence also desire for immortality. Aristophanes cannot account for the aspirations entailed in the desire for fame or in the desire for knowledge. Such aspirations can be understood only with reference to the good. However, the paper shows how time plays a fundamental role in the original pursuit of wholeness at the center of Aristophanes’ myth of the two halves. Diotima appropriates his thesis when she describes the urge to leave behind something similar to what one has been. The desire for immortality is nothing but a desire for completeness pursued by mortal nature against the never-ending destruction of time.
93. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Danielle A. Layne Refutation and Double Ignorance in Proclus
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Regardless of the inconsistencies between Plato and his inheritors, the late neo-Platonist Proclus offers poignant answers to several contemporary debatesimbedded in Socratic scholarship. In the following, we will concentrate on Proclus’s interpretation of the Socratic elenchos and the provocative concept of double ignorance by clarifying their appearance in The Commentary on Plato’s Parmenides and The Commentary on the Alcibiades I. In this endeavor we shall unpack how Proclus characterizes the elenchos as an authentic dialectic purifying its recipients from an evil caused by the conceit to knowledge, a condition which unfortunately almost all men suffer and require treatment.
94. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Russell Winslow On the Life of Thinking in Aristotle’s De Anima
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In “On the Life of thinking in Aristotle’s De Anima,” the author offers an interpretation of the tripartite structure of the unified soul in Aristotle’s text. The principleactivity that unities the nutritive, sensuously perceptive and noetically perceptive parts of the soul into a single, continuous entity is shown by our author to be genesis (or the sexual begetting of offspring). After establishing this observation, the paper provides the textual grounds to understand how both sensuous and noetic perception can be understood as a kind of embodied genesis. A further consequence of this argument will be an interpretation of “thinking,” of noetic perception, as a kind of open and passive reception of the primary forms of other beings. As such, Aristotle’s conception of thinking, qua nous, is a refreshing, if strange, contrast to the more common modern vision of “thinking” as the activity of an agent mentally seizing hold of beings in the service of the mastery of nature.
95. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Phil Hopkins Weaving the Fish Basket: Heraclitus on Riddles and the Relation of Word and World
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Heraclitus stands in opposition to the general systematic tendency of philosophy in that he insisted that the contents of philosophy are such as to requireexpositional strategies whose goal it is to do something with and to the reader rather than merely say something. For him, the questions of philosophy and, indeed, the matters of the world such questions take up are not best approached by means of discursive propositions. His view of the relation of the structures of reality to the structures of language requires procedures for understanding the world and talking about it that recognize and exploit the essentially riddle-like nature of both things and words.
96. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Kalliopi Nikolopoulou Plato and Hegel on an Old Quarrel
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This paper addresses the relationship of ancients to moderns by focusing on the “quarrel” between art and philosophy that has led to two articulations of the endof art—one in antiquity, another in modernity: Plato, who expelled the poets from his city on account of art’s irrationality, and Hegel, for whom art was no more the necessary vehicle for truth. Following Giorgio Agamben’s cue in The Man Without Content, I opt for a symptomatic reading of Plato’s condemnation of art, by foregrounding his ambivalence toward poetry. I conclude that, whereas Hegel found poetry wanting, Plato understood poetry’s truth to be tragically excessive.
97. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
James Risser Discourse, Dialectic, and the Art of Weaving
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This paper explores the way in which the art of weaving, as it is initially presented in Plato’s Statesman, serves to configure both the fundamental character ofdiscourse and the limit experience of discourse for Plato. The problem that arises in relation to this configuration pertains to the possible unity of discourse (and with it the acquisition of knowledge). In relation to the hermeneutics of Hans-Georg Gadamer and his reading of Plato, it is argued that the unity of discourse follows “the arithmos structure of the logos” with its distinctive dialectical character. It is concluded that this character expresses the finitude of knowing in which oppositions remain in tension.
98. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
Walter Brogan Letter from the Editor
99. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
John Sallis Speaking of the Earth: Figures of Transport in the Phaedo
100. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy: Volume > 13 > Issue: 2
M. Ross Romero, S.J. Without the Least Tremor: Ritual Sacrifice as Background in the Phaedo
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Sacrifice haunts the Phaedo. In this article, I argue that the mise-en-scène of the death scene of the Phaedo, as well as other sacrificial elements in the background of the dialogue, creates a nexus that positively integrates the birth, philosophical practice, and death of Socrates into the ritualized rhythm of the life of the city of Athens. A close reading of the death scene presented as a synopsis with Walter Burkert’s well-known analysis of Greek sacrifice reveals convergences and divergences between the Phaedo and Greek sacrificial practice. Socrates appears as a willing victim who accepts the city’s sacrificial practice while remaining on his own terms.