Martin Shuster's Autonomy after Auschwitz: Adorno, German Idealism, and PDF

By Martin Shuster

Ever given that Kant and Hegel, the idea of autonomy—the concept that we're beholden to no legislations other than one we impose upon ourselves—has been thought of the truest philosophical expression of human freedom. yet may perhaps our dedication to autonomy, as Theodor Adorno requested, be regarding the intense evils that we've got witnessed in modernity? In Autonomy after Auschwitz, Martin Shuster explores this tough query with extraordinary theoretical acumen, studying the appropriate methods autonomy can lead us down a direction of evil and the way it would be avoided from doing so.

Shuster uncovers risks within the proposal of autonomy because it used to be initially conceived through Kant. placing Adorno into discussion with a number eu philosophers, significantly Kant, Hegel, Horkheimer, and Habermas—as good as with various modern Anglo-American thinkers equivalent to Richard Rorty, Stanley Cavell, John McDowell, and Robert Pippin—he illuminates Adorno’s very important revisions to this fraught suggestion and the way his diverse knowing of self sustaining corporation, totally articulated, may perhaps open up new and optimistic social and political probabilities. Altogether, Autonomy after Auschwitz is a meditation on smooth evil and human service provider, one who demonstrates the super moral stakes on the center of philosophy. 

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Additional info for Autonomy after Auschwitz: Adorno, German Idealism, and Modernity

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Enlightenment,” then, designates an outlook that spans temporal and spatial boundaries. As Adorno will later write, “As far back as we can trace it, the history of thought has been a dialectic of enlightenment” (ND 118/6:124; emphasis added). ” This revision is important and gives us two clues for reading the text. 28 Revisions that do not serve this goal, then, should be 26. Cf. Hent de Vries, Minimal Theologies: Critiques of Secular Reason in Adorno and Levinas, trans. Geoffrey Hale (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005), 191.

How might we justify them? As already suggested, to count as autonomous, such ends cannot be imposed externally, whether in the form of religion, as mere submission to the forces of nature, or as any other form of heteronomy. Such external aims would make reason instrumental, serving a merely technical purpose. 63 Such ideas thereby can guide inquiry into various areas of life, but they cannot be taken to constitute that reality (1C A642–­68 = B670–­96). 64 9. The Necessity of the Dialectic of Enlightenment Returning to Horkheimer and Adorno’s dialectic, we can begin to understand its necessity when we realize that the dialectic of enlightenment is formally analogous to Kant’s dialectic.

James Schmidt, “Genocide and the Limits of Enlightenment: Horkheimer and Adorno Revisited,” in Enlightenment and Genocide, Contradictions of Modernity, ed. Bo Strath (Brussels: Peter Lang, 2000), 86. 32. Jürgen Habermas, Philosophical Political Profiles, trans. Frederick G. Lawrence (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1983), 100. Cf. Habermas, Philosophical Discourse of Modernity, 111–­12. 33. Especially Max Horkheimer, Eclipse of Reason (New York: Oxford University Press, 1947). 34. Cf. Hammer, Adorno and the Political, 43; Jameson, Late Marxism, 15–­17.

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