File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0111, message 90

Date: Sun, 18 Nov 2001 16:21:16 +1000
Subject: Re: The Sublime


I think there was some consistency in notions of the sublime expressed by
Kant, Burke, Lyotard which we tried to understand and explain to each other,
a social process.  More interesting than trading names.

Our efforts were, in my mind, the opposite of solipsism.

An endless pursuit of all the names of all those who wrote of the "sublime"
tends to splinter the unity of our social concept.

Following your thought, solipsists would be a community of Crusoe's in
search for new islands, new shipwrecks, new abstractions to be launched in
new bottles.



> hugh:
> I may be misinterpeting you, but a some level you seem to be implying
> that each definition of the sublime is an idea in some philosopher's
> mind.
> Aren't you simply restating what Wittgenstein once referred to as the
> private language argument?
> I don't agree with the notion that language is merely communication
> striving for agreement as a kind of end-point, but I do believe language
> is inherently social.
> Don't these conversations help clarify our concepts in some way even as
> we disagree?
> Are we really only self-contained Robison Crusoes on solipist islands
> forever tossing hopelessly our sublime bottles into the sea?
> eric


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