File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0109, message 101

Subject: Re: Mystify me!
Date: Fri, 21 Sep 2001 15:39:52 -0500

Maybe philosophy just prevents us from doing something more dangerous with
our intellects?
----- Original Message -----
From: Steve Devos <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, September 21, 2001 3:01 PM
Subject: Re: Mystify me!

> Julie
> The reason I believe that even the most arcane and ifficult philosophy is
> is for two reasons - both of point towards why your heartfelt quote, which
is often
> necessary in that it reminds us of the importance of addressing everyday
life -
> which recently intruded into the G8 countries in an horrible way.
> The first reason is that alone of the western discourses philsophy took on
> burden of the appalling acts of Auschwitz, Belson and other places and
decided it
> was guilty. None of the other discourses-science, the military,
> historians and so on all walk forward into the abyss knowing that they are
> Philosophy uniquely accepted the social/political crimes of the century
and said yes
> this is a problem for philosophy and felt guilty. (Rightly or wrongly is
not the
> issue and of course I mean western philosophy...)
> The second reason relates to the importance that the invention of (new)
concepts has
> for us as we wander down the increasingly chaotic and unstable streets of
our PM
> everyday life (both of which are new and outrageuosly difficult concepts
> understand). I say this not because I am hopelessly lost in a halcyon
dream of
> earlier days but rather because post the first reason I think that iot is
> to continue the philosophical process of analysing and struggling with the
> and slavery of a society that has extended its dominion over the whole
planet - that
> is to say the 'control society', the 'development society', the 'society
of the
> spectecle', in which we live...
> This note may appear superfically to be indifferent to mothers and
children but I'd
> take my direction in this instance from Irigaray and Kristeva (whose work
> strangers and love seems very appropriate at the moment)... who argues for
> and enhanced secular values' as necessary above all else if we are to
achieve a
> humane society.
> regards
> sdv
> > Perhaps I am unscholarly and hopelessly old-fashioned.  But when
philosophy and
> > politics becomes numb to mothers and children and families, then what
good does
> > it do anyone?
> >
> > I am struck by Hugh's comments:  a saying of names, a performance of
> > Indeed.  May our rituals and sayings and grief not echo into silence.
> > Sisyphus overcome.


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