[SydPhil] REMIDNER: UWS seminar: James Phillips: Jean-Luc Nancy’s Fraternal First Philosophy of the ‘With’ (Sept 26)

Dimitris Vardoulakis D.Vardoulakis at uws.edu.au
Thu Sep 20 13:45:09 AEST 2012

University if Western Sydney Philosophy Seminars 2012
The Writing and Society Research Centre and Philosophy at UWS present:

James Phillips
Title: Jean-Luc Nancy’s Fraternal First Philosophy of the ‘With’: Rethinking Communion

DATE/TIME: Wednesday, 26 September, 2-4pm
PLACE: University of Western Sydney, Bankstown Campus, Building 3, Room 3.G.55

Abstract: Jean-Luc Nancy’s philosophical writings present an extended meditation on the meaning and possibility of community.  Revisiting ontology’s question of the relationship between the many ways of Being, Nancy defines community by the communication/equivocation of the ways of Being rather than a common substance.  Nancy names this community of Being “with” and resists the traditional pull in ontology, from Aristotle to Heidegger, to uncover the unity of analogy of the different ways of Being.  The different ways of Being are with one another, and it is “with” that preserves the differences in their relations.  Nancy’s community of “with” is a community without a unifying point of indifference, a fraternal community of family resemblances without a father.  First philosophy here is immediately social, and Nancy offers the one critique of both ontology and sociology.  Heidegger’s fundamental ontology and Freud’s speculations on the originary community of the primal horde both conceal and reveal what, for Nancy, is the community without a shared substance.  It is, however, ontology and Nancy’s critical relationship to it that informs his conception of community: objections that Nancy’s position is apolitical and ethically ambiguous take insufficient notice of the different task that he has set himself.

Bio: James Phillips is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of New South Wales.  His research interests lie in the areas of aesthetics, political philosophy, phenomenology and the philosophical dimensions of literary texts.  He is the author of Heidegger’s Volk: Between National Socialism and Poetry (Stanford UP, 2005) and The Equivocation of Reason: Kleist Reading Kant (Stanford UP, 2007).  He has also edited a book on cinema.
 For the entire 2012 program of the Philosophy seminar series at UWS see: http://www.uws.edu.au/philosophy/philosophy@uws/events/research_seminars_2012
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