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An Ethics for Today: Finding Common Ground…

An Ethics for Today: Finding Common Ground Between Philosophy and Religion (edition 2010)

by Richard Rorty, Gianni Vattimo (Introduction), Jeffrey W. Robbins (Foreword), G. Elijah Dann (Contributor)

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Title:An Ethics for Today: Finding Common Ground Between Philosophy and Religion
Authors:Richard Rorty
Other authors:Gianni Vattimo (Introduction), Jeffrey W. Robbins (Foreword), G. Elijah Dann (Contributor)
Info:Columbia University Press (2010), Hardcover, 104 pages
Collections:Your library, printbooks
Tags:printbook, owned, currently reading

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An Ethics for Today: Finding Common Ground Between Philosophy and Religion by Richard Rorty



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So far, I have not been impressed with the collaborative publications featuring Rorty and other contributors. This is a very short book. The first bit (which I read after reading the main section by Rorty himself) largely rehashes Rorty's essay. The concluding essay by G. Elijah Dann is quite unsatisfying as a reading of Rorty or an analysis of religion. There is clearly a need for treatments of religion that are pitched between the militant atheists (Dawkins, etc.) and true believers, but what I have seen so far of these Rorty collaborations do not fill the bill. There seems to be a too large dualism and gap between discourse in the fully public square and the private pursuit of perfection. Most of life is lived very much between these extremes. For example, is the song God bless America a religious hymn or a patriotic song? Clearly it is both. Are Star Trek conventions actions in the public square or exercises in private perfections? (The Rorty analogy might have been clubs organized for the study and appreciation of orchids.) I am beginning to feel about the term Religion like Rorty speaks of God (in Consequences of Pragmatism, I believe); it is not so much that I believe or disbelieve in the value of religion, but rather I wish we did not need to talk about it so much. But in fact we do. Humanity is no where near pragmatic, secular society. There are an enormous number of religious constructs competing in our world. They still need to be studied and understood: 1) as profoundly interesting works of imagination, 2) to keep them from getting in the way of better techniques and futures. ( )
  Darrol | Feb 3, 2011 |
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Richard Rortyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Dann, G. ElijahContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0231150563, Hardcover)

Richard Rorty is famous, maybe even infamous, for his philosophical nonchalance. His groundbreaking work not only rejects all theories of truth but also dismisses modern epistemology and its preoccupation with knowledge and representation. At the same time, the celebrated pragmatist believed there could be no universally valid answers to moral questions, which led him to a complex view of religion rarely expressed in his writings.

In this posthumous publication, Rorty, a strict secularist, finds in the pragmatic thought of John Dewey, John Stuart Mill, William James, and George Santayana, among others, a political imagination shared by religious traditions. His intent is not to promote belief over nonbelief or to blur the distinction between religious and public domains. Rorty seeks only to locate patterns of similarity and difference so an ethics of decency and a politics of solidarity can rise. He particularly responds to Pope Benedict XVI and his campaign against the relativist vision. Whether holding theologians, metaphysicians, or political ideologues to account, Rorty remains steadfast in his opposition to absolute uniformity and its exploitation of political strength.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:40 -0400)

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