Study "Philosophy / Logic / Reason" Essays 991-1000

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Dialectic of the Enlightenment Essay

… Our preoccupation with what he calls metanarratives has to be replaced by a conception of political discourse as a dual of local narratives and language games and not toward "final" resolutions, but a continuing dialogue. But toward creative and novel. Habermas, wishes to preserve his and other scholars epistemological and modernist search for a universal and impartial theory of justice. He calls Lyotard an irrationalist and conservative, betraying an intellectual poverty of the resources needed to carry out a systematic critique of present practices and in the detection in ideological distortions in discourse. Perhaps this is why one can not separate the concerns of modernity and postmodernity from each other. It is a bit like the chicken and the egg. Both perspectives have validity and it is hard to say other is wrong. Both have seeming beginnings and ends that look similar. The two discourses form each other because they are part of a dialectical paradigm that can not be separated. Like permanently joined Siamese twins, they die without each other. The paradigm can not be "localized" to one discipline. Instead, it is one that spans disciplines (Fairfield 994)


In this short essay, we examined Lyotard and Habermas's stance on the issue on the issues of postmodernity and modernity and their relationship to the enlightenment. Lyotard believed that we have to transcend the historical narratives to comprehend the implications of the phase from modernism to postmodernism. We saw how Habermas saw postmodernism as simply a deconstruction of modernism. Certainly, both positions have merit. Perhaps the argument is like the chicken and the egg and postmodernism really can not be disconnected in any real way from modernism or the enlightenment before that.


Fairfield, P.. (1994). Habermas, Lyotard and Political Discours. Available:

http://www.*****/pdf/19/rp_19_5.pdf. Last accessed 20 Feb 2012.
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Ferraris, M., & Taraboletti Segre, A.. (1988). Postmodernism and the Deconstruction…… [read more]

Neo-Aristotelian Criticism Essay

… Neo-Aristotelian Criticism

In September 2005, Jane Fonda gave the keynote speech, entitled "The New Feminism: Reuniting the Head, the Heart & the Body," at Women & Power, a three-day conference hosted by the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, an organization… [read more]

Dialogues of Plato Book Report

… Therefore, they must have knowledge of the topic in which they speak, such as virtue. If a man tries to teach of virtue, then he too will likely become more virtuous.

2. Critically discuss any one argument for the immortality of the soul (from Phaedo) b. Critically discuss what Socrates means when he says the philosopher spends his life practicing dying.

In the dialogue entitled "Phaedo," Plato writes a dialogue as if Socrates were speaking to a group of listeners during his last hours on Earth. In the piece, he expresses his beliefs on the immortality of the soul. Through the piece, Socrates makes four arguments which are designed to support his theory. First there is the "cyclical argument" which is that since the human body is mortal and can perish, then the soul must be a formal opposite. Just like matter cannot be either created or destroyed, only changed, so too the human soul cannot either begin or end; it simply changes forms. The second argument is the "theory of recollection" which states that at the moment of birth, people already have some knowledge, such as how to breath and how to cry and how to relate to mother and father. The only logical reason for this prenatal knowledge, according to Socrates, is if the soul is older than the physical body and has already been through a life before. Thirdly, Socrates argues that there are two types of things which exist: the tangible and seeable components of the world and the more ethereal, invisible aspects. Just because they are not visible, does not mean that these things do not exist. The final argument in favor of the presence of the soul is that it participates in the life process. Since to exist, something must be temporary and something infinite, it is only logical that the soul not only exists, but it also eternal.

The life of Socrates was ended by a glass of poison. However, long before his death, Socrates was quoted as saying that philosophers spend their lives practicing dying. By this, it is likely that he meant that for a philosopher, life is but a short-term in a longer process. The soul cannot die. Therefore, man cannot really die. His body may perish, but the soul continues on into the next plane of existence. Through "Phaedo," Socrates proved his belief that the soul was within each human being and that this soul was invisible and infinite. If the soul is immortal, then this part of man is also immortal. Philosophers, being perhaps more insightful than other members of the society, will understand this immortality and will celebrate the death of their body as the potential for rebirthing of the soul.

Works Cited:

Plato. Great Dialogues of Plato. Perfection…… [read more]

Modest Proposal Jonathan Swift's Satirical Essay

… The narrator does not provide any evidence for the claim that a child only takes two shillings to raise until it is a year old, other than to state that he has thought about it for many years, as if… [read more]

Descartes Rene and Baruch Term Paper

… Descartes

Rene and Baruch

There can be little doubt that Rene Descartes' role in the emergence of modern science was instrumental in the perception of a definition of psychology being at variance with that which was existent during the time of St. Thomas Aquinas and Aristotle. Largely due to the methodology employed by the French philosopher, he was able to provide a foundation for all sciences -- including psychology, which is the science of how the mind works and various other aspects of cognition -- to truly begin in a manner that can consistently be demonstrated and proven. Descartes' analytic style of presentations on the subject of science and knowledge examines the root causes of what is known within a specific field of study, and attributes those causes to some necessary source that provides the foundation for them. Doing so allowed Descartes to not only provide new definitions and aspects of various scientific processes and fields of studies, but also to surmount many of the conceptions that applied to those fields before, as the following quotation sufficiently demonstrates. "In establishing the ground for science, Descartes was at the same time overthrowing a system of natural philosophy that had been established for centuries" (Smith, 2010).

However, it should be noted that Descartes' distinction between the mind and the body does not necessarily apply to Baruch Spinoza's views in regards to intellect. Descartes traditionally contended that the mind and the body were wholly separate entities, and that the processes and applications of one were entirely inconsequential to that of the other. This duality of existence of these two entities is underscored by the following quotation, in which Descartes "reaches this conclusion by arguing that the nature of the mind (that is, a thinking, non-extended thing) is completely different from that of the body (that is, an extended, non-thinking thing), and therefore it is possible for one to exist without the other" (Skirry, 2006). Spinoza, on the other hand, primarily viewed the mind and the body as different aspects of a unified…… [read more]

Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream Essay


Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his infamous I Have a Dream speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington on August 28, 1963. That speech was, in… [read more]

Socrates: Offering Legal Counsel Essay

… Some of your students have had spotted histories, such as Critias, who strove to overthrow the democratic government, and succeeded briefly. However, you must point out that you have never advocated outright sedition. Although you may have spoke of an ideal, philosophical kingdom, you did not say that people should overthrow our current system of government to attain it. You have always enjoyed the freedom of speech offered by Athens, and had Critias had his way, you could not have sustained yourself as a philosopher, given that you would likely have fallen afoul of his antidemocratic principles.

Make it seem as though your speculation about an ideal philosopher's kingdom was an intellectual exercise, like all of your other debate about philosophy, rather than something to be put into real practice. Only by making an argument based upon the principles of free speech do you have a hope of leaving the courtroom a free man. Secondly, you must stress that the actions of some of your former pupils was not based upon your teachings or your urgings, but was rather rooted in their own base nature.

Because of the fears stoked by the recent overthrow and restitution of the democracy, it is possible that these arguments will not succeed, and you will still find yourself condemned through guilt-by-association. Athenian courts are decided by democratic means, and the majority of the population is still fearful about what transpired in the recent past. Also, your manner of questioning people often provokes ire, rather than affection or tolerance.

You must disassociate yourself from the actions of your former students and make every effort not to seem arrogant or boastful. Create a common bond between your ideas and the ideas of the jurors by stressing how your work was supported by the freedom of Athens. Appeal to their higher sensibilities and stress your service to the state.

Work Cited

Linder, Doug. "The trial of Socrates." [13 Jan 2012]… [read more]

Nozick Matrix Questions on Cinema and Reality Term Paper

… Nozick Matrix

Questions on Cinema and Reality

Robert Nozick proposes the following thought experiment. Suppose that you were hooked up to an "experience machine." Once hooked up to the machine, you would forget that you were attached to the machine,… [read more]

Theoretical Approach Critic on a Chosen Media Object Term Paper

… Media Critical Analysis


Hamlet: The struggle of being and the power of passion

Hamlet: The struggle of being and the power of passion

Media critical analysis

The Struggle of Being and Power of the Passions attempts to show the… [read more]

Aristotle Ethics in Book X Essay

… States and households both should encourage this type of training in virtue, though, which leads Aristotle into his discussion of Politics.

As Aristotle explains in Chapter 7, the happiness associated with the contemplative life is by far superior to that associated with the civil or political life, no matter how virtuous. In fact, he even refers to the superhuman quality of this type of life, which might be beyond the capabilities or ordinary mortals. He also explains that this type of life requires more leisure than the life of politics or military service, but it is still the best life and brings the greatest happiness. Since the nous of humanity is also divine, it has a natural longing for transcendence to the spiritual level, which is the greatest good. Aristotle seems to be saying, however, that in order to fully live in this way, the individual will have to withdraw from the day-to-day concerns of politics, public service or civic duties. Certainly the base and animal-like majority who spend all their time dwelling on food, sex and physical desires can have no part of this higher spiritual happiness. Perhaps the true contemplatives would have to live secluded lives as monks, nuns or hermits, away from all the cares and temptations of the world. In this area, later Christian theologians and philosophers found much in Aristotle's Ethics that was congenial, especially his contempt for the life of hedonism and physical pleasure and the deliberate cultivation of virtues. In their case, though, the main goal was salvation of the soul rather than happiness.

Despite all the great scientific and technological advances over 2,500 years, much or Aristotle's analysis of humanity and society still holds true in the modern world. Fundamentally, most people do exist on the rather low level as consumers of pleasures and avoiders of pain. Indeed, mass consumer society treats this type of mindless hedonism as a virtue and even a necessity to stimulate the economy. Mass media and culture encourage this type of immersion in pleasure and self-indulgence that Aristotle would have despised as animal-like. Certainly modern society also places very high value on money-making and idealizes the wealthy in ways that Aristotle would have found repugnant. He probably would have viewed contemporary American society as a kind of oligarchy rather than a republic or aristocracy, which could only survive if middle class citizens and nobles had a high degree of civil virtue and considered the needs of society over their personal pleasures and desires. Aristotle would also have found a definite lack of civic virtues in the politicians and leadership class, who definitely do not regard virtue as its own reward and view high office as a means of obtaining power and wealth. By Aristotle's standards, then, it is neither a very virtuous nor a happy society, and the young are being trained to turn out base rather than noble. Even in religion and spiritual life, all too often those lacking in virtue use this as a path… [read more]

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