File spoon-archives/habermas.archive/habermas_2000/habermas.0005, message 14


Date: Fri, 5 May 2000 11:28:44 +0300 (EET DST)
Subject: Re: HAB: Habermas and Buber


On 4 May 2000, Bill Hord wrote:

> I have been wondering whether Habermas has engaged with Buber or Buber's 
> writings, and if so where he has commented on Buber's work.
> 
> If I have begun to understand Buber correctly, his conception of 
> dialogue is not confined to language (I can be in an I-thou relation 
> with a tree, for example), which would be in conflict with Habermas's 
> basic insight regarding the primacy of language.
> 
> On the other hand, Buber's critique of objective relations ("I-it") from 
> the perspective of the I-thou, while yet acknowledging the necessity of 
> those relations, appears to me as one that Habermas might acknowledge as 
> fundamentally right.
> 
> Thanks.
> 
> Bill Hord
> Houston, TX, USA

I don't recall that Habermas have any refenrences to Buber, but I have
interpeted Buber's distinction (I-it versus I-thou) in a way that it is
compatible with Habermas's basic distinction (startegical versus
communicative action). They both lean on German idealism but different
lines; Habermas wants to make "rational recostruction" of kantian moral
philosophy. Buber lean on German romanticism, especially so called I-thou
philosophy.


Rauno Huttunen
Jyväskylä
Finland 



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