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The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 6, 1998

Contemporary Philosophy

Anthony David
Pages 65-72

Lyotard on the Kantian Sublime

In this essay I explicate J.F. Lyotard's reading of the Kantian sublime as presented in Lessons on the Analytic of the Sublime (1994) and in "Answering the Question: What is Postmodernism" (1984). Lessons articulates the context in which critical thought situates itself as a zone of virtually infinite creative capacity, undetermined by principles but in search of them; "Answering the Question" explores how the virtually infinite creative capacity of thought manifests in the avant-gardes. Essentially, in both works Lyotard understands the Kantian sublime as legitimating deconstructive postmodernism.

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