- Hello folks, I am writing to introduce myself to this forum, which I have just joined. Unfortunately I have not read much Habermas. I tried to purchase TheoryMessage 1 of 2 , Jan 2, 2003View SourceHello folks,
I am writing to introduce myself to this forum, which I have just joined.
Unfortunately I have not read much Habermas. I tried to purchase Theory of
Communicative Action from Amazon but, although they allowed me to add it
to my order, three weeks later they emailed to say it was unavailable. So my
first request to the group is to let me know if there is anywhere I can purchase
this book from and if there are any online resources featuring Habermas texts.
Secondly, I am inviting anyone to come along to the group at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Communicationalism is an attempt
to create a basis for ethics appropriate to western modes of thinking that
doesn't require survivalism as its main plank. It is our observation at
communicationalism that all major ethical systems developed in the west in
the last 200 years have had survivalism - the doctrine that the chief good is
enhanced survival of Self (and, by extension, close Other) - at their core; but
that these ethical systems cannot be universalised because they require, as
per humanism, a clear distinction between those who are "in" such an ethical
system (in this case humans) and those who are "out", eg. animals. More
extreme forms of survivalist ethics distinguish between classes of human
being eg. by their colour or race.
Communicationalism aims to develop a universalisable system of ethics that
insists that communication is a prior good to survival. We wish to do this
without recourse to textual authority other than, of course, to clarify the
terminology being used.
I am very interested to discover if communicationalism is a position Habermas
would have endorsed and if any Habermasians are able/willing to contribute
to the development of this new ethical discipline.
Other than that, I look forward to reading the discussions on this board and
learning more about Habermas.
Oh, one last thing: I am the moderator of email@example.com. Any
Habermasians are of course welcome to join our discussions there...
Happy New Year 2003!
- Gary, Thanks for your very interesting reply. I think I may remember you from months spent on the Heidegger group. Wasn t it you who always signed offMessage 2 of 2 , Jan 2, 2003View SourceGary,
Thanks for your very interesting reply. I think I may remember you
from months spent on the Heidegger group. Wasn't it you who always
signed off "sincerely" (your quotes)? Anyway, I will certainly check
out your recommendations.
>Thanks for your interest in Habermas!Mmm. You are possibly correct that the major ethical systems don't
>My exam of Amazon.com shows that the vol. 1 paperback of
>TCA is available ("Ships in 2 - 3 days") and 2 copies of
>vol. 2 are available. Buy Now! The 140+ page "Introduction"
>in vol. 1 is a masterpiece of overview of his thinking.
>Also, it would be available through Barnes & Noble or via
>any local bookstore by special order--or a local college
>But another good choice would be _Philosophical Discourse
>of Modernity_ paperback, which has a couple of long
>chapters toward the end which give a good, succinct
>overview of his approach to communicative action. Best,
>though-- theoretically speaking-- would be: _On the
>Pragmatics of Communication_, also available in paperback.
>Again: _OPC_ would be the best choice, if you want to
>understand his approach to *communication* in bredth and
>depth (though your interest seems to be more in ethics).
>_TCA_ is excellent, but it's geared toward a revision of
>social theory, in light his approach to communication,
>while _OPC_ includes the relevant features from _TCA_, as
>well as his most fundamental essays on communication
>--- "Tommy Beavitt <tommy@...>" <tommy@...>
>> It is our observation at
>> communicationalism that all major ethical systems
>> developed in the west in
>> the last 200 years have had survivalism - the doctrine
>> that the chief good is
>> enhanced survival of Self (and, by extension, close
>> Other) - at their core;
>My experience in philosophy has been contrary to this. The
>"major ethical systems" include Kant, utilitarianism, and
>virtue ethics, none of which "have...survivalism...at their
>core," so I don't understand your observation. _Cambridge
>Companion to Ethics_ overviews tens of approaches to
>ethics, but I don't recall that any are basically involved
explicitly put survivalism at their core. So it perhaps isn't the
case that there is anything wrong with them per se. Although I do
detect, particularly in the writings of JS Mill, certain lemmas of
which the assumption of the "good" of survival is one.
My point is that the current interpretation of western ethical
systems appears to be concerned with survivalism. Because ethics is a
practical field of enquiry it is very hard to refute this assumption
that survival of Self is the chief good and survival of Other follows
automatically from this. It is with this in mind that I am bent on
deconstructing ethical systems that have emerged from the Anglo
tradition since the 18th century.
>Anmyway, Habermas's approach to ethics is neo-Kantian, butExcellent. I will certainly be looking deeper into Habermas.
>basically in light of his social pragmatics of
>communication (It can't be grasped from a strictly Kantian,
>self-legislative perspective). The best statement of
>Habermas's approach to ethics specifically (distinguished
>from "moral" theory, understood in his social pragmatic,
>neo-Kantian way) is his the wonderful book _Justification
>and Application_ (paperback, MIT Press). Chapter 1 of this
>paperback is worth the price of the book: "On the Ethical,
>Moral and Pragmatic Employments of Practical Reason." I
>highly recommend this book. The long middle chapter
>"Remarks on Discourse Ethics" is outstanding.
> > Communicationalism aims to develop a universalisableYou are right, of course. All that I meant was that I didn't wish to
>> system of ethics that
>> insists that communication is a prior good to survival.
>Habermas would certainly agree to this.
>> We wish to do this
> > without recourse to textual authority other than, of
> > course, to clarify the
> > terminology being used.
>Yet philosophy provides lots of good textual authority on
>understanding the use of terminology, as well of course as
>good theoretical perspectives worth consideration in their
>own right. Texts allow for extended arguments to be clear,
>shareable in a specific sense (the shared text) and
>manageable for commentary and critique by others.
replace survivalism with an approach that finds its natural
expression solely through exegesis of a specific text such as the
Koran, which is what Islam, clearly a non-survivalist ethical system,
> > I am very interested to discover if communicationalism isHooray!
>> a position Habermas
>> would have endorsed and if any Habermasians are
>> able/willing to contribute
>> to the development of this new ethical discipline.
>Habermas's thought is very well-developed---challenging in
>its complexity, but profoundly insightful in its
>understanding of ethical universalism based in
>communicative life. His work has much to offer any interest
>in communicative ethics. For example, he has quite an
>elaborate position on the dispute between universalists
>(neo-Kantians) and communitarians (neo-Aristotelians) which
>he explicates in one chapter of _Justification &
>Application_ on "the neo-Aristotelians."
> >That appears to be the unfortunate tendency of all such online
>> Other than that, I look forward to reading the
>> discussions on this board and
>> learning more about Habermas.
>I've been lately taking a very applied perspective to
>issues, not focusing as much on Habermas's work as I prefer
>(since other subscribers have had some special interest in
>current events). But my intent is to get back soon to
>focusing on specifics of Habermas's work, early this year.
forums. It is the same at Sartre I can assure you. I am at this
present time becoming embroiled in yet another attempt at refereeing
a discussion of the Holocaust. Everyone has good intentions I am
sure, but no one can resist the temptation of controversialism vs.
Looking forward to more Habermas insights.
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