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Humanities, Volume 2, Issue 3 (September 2013), Pages 328-438

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Research

Open AccessArticle Tales of Two Cities: Architecture, Print and Early Guidebooks to Paris and London
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 328-350; doi:10.3390/h2030328
Received: 19 April 2013 / Revised: 26 June 2013 / Accepted: 26 June 2013 / Published: 5 July 2013
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Abstract
This pioneering paper is the first to consider the contribution of a new type of urban literature to perceptions and portrayals of the city in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. It focuses on London and Parisian guidebooks, a genre that has
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This pioneering paper is the first to consider the contribution of a new type of urban literature to perceptions and portrayals of the city in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. It focuses on London and Parisian guidebooks, a genre that has been little studied to date, particularly those of: Germaine Brice, Description nouvelle de ce qui’il ya de plus remarquable dans la Ville de Paris (1684); F. Colsoni, Le Guide de Londres (1693); and Edward Hatton, A New View of London (1708). The article is the first to establish the significance of language primers as source for tourist guidebooks and the prevalence of lexicographers among those producing them. It examines the modern type of non-antiquarian urban guidebook as part of the new urban consumer culture. It also explores the genre’s contribution to a novel form in the writing and understanding of the city in the period focussed on the contemporary and the experiential, rather than the traditional orientation towards the historical and the monumental. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Art and Words)
Open AccessArticle Rorty, Williams, and Davidson: Skepticism and Metaepistemology
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 351-368; doi:10.3390/h2030351
Received: 12 June 2013 / Revised: 21 June 2013 / Accepted: 25 June 2013 / Published: 8 July 2013
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Abstract
We revisit an important exchange on the problem of radical skepticism between Richard Rorty and Michael Williams. In his contribution to this exchange, Rorty defended the kind of transcendental approach to radical skepticism that is offered by Donald Davidson, in contrast to Williams’s
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We revisit an important exchange on the problem of radical skepticism between Richard Rorty and Michael Williams. In his contribution to this exchange, Rorty defended the kind of transcendental approach to radical skepticism that is offered by Donald Davidson, in contrast to Williams’s Wittgenstein-inspired view. It is argued that the key to evaluating this debate is to understand the particular conception of the radical skeptical problem that is offered in influential work by Barry Stroud, a conception of the skeptical problem which generates metaepistemological ramifications for anti-skeptical theories. In particular, we argue that, contra Williams, Rorty’s view that Davidson was offering a theoretical diagnosis of radical skepticism can be consistently maintained with his transcendental approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Legacy of Richard Rorty)
Open AccessArticle Rorty, Pragmatism, and Analytic Philosophy
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 369-383; doi:10.3390/h2030369
Received: 12 June 2013 / Revised: 28 June 2013 / Accepted: 9 July 2013 / Published: 10 July 2013
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Abstract
One of Richard Rorty's legacies is to have put a Jamesian version of pragmatism on the contemporary philosophical map. Part of his argument has been that pragmatism and analytic philosophy are set against each other, with pragmatism almost having been killed off by
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One of Richard Rorty's legacies is to have put a Jamesian version of pragmatism on the contemporary philosophical map. Part of his argument has been that pragmatism and analytic philosophy are set against each other, with pragmatism almost having been killed off by the reigning analytic philosophy. The argument of this paper is that there is a better and more interesting reading of both the history of pragmatism and the history of analytic philosophy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Legacy of Richard Rorty)
Open AccessArticle Double Visions: Autobiography and the Ends of Philosophy
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 384-403; doi:10.3390/h2030384
Received: 23 May 2013 / Revised: 19 June 2013 / Accepted: 9 July 2013 / Published: 10 July 2013
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Abstract
In Contingency, irony and solidarity Rorty attempts to solve what Robert Pippin calls the ‘Modernity Problem’ by outlining a new self-understanding for the intellectuals of the ideal liberal society. The so-called liberal ironists of this post-philosophical milieu are no longer characterized by the
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In Contingency, irony and solidarity Rorty attempts to solve what Robert Pippin calls the ‘Modernity Problem’ by outlining a new self-understanding for the intellectuals of the ideal liberal society. The so-called liberal ironists of this post-philosophical milieu are no longer characterized by the quest for what Rorty describes as ‘a single vision’. This paper evaluates Rorty’s attempt to conceptualize the self-image of post-philosophical intellectuals in the light of two similar endeavors; namely, Nietzsche’s and the ancient Sceptics’. The preliminary conclusion is that although Rorty’s attempt fails, it points to an alternative way of interpreting the desire for a single vision; namely, as a form of autobiography. Drawing on Nietzsche, Nagel and Mill, the paper proceeds to argue that Rorty’s own autobiographical fragment exemplifies the way in which the narration of a failed attempt to find a ‘single vision’ can itself be seen as the achievement of such a vision. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Legacy of Richard Rorty)
Open AccessArticle Richard Rorty in Context
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 404-420; doi:10.3390/h2030404
Received: 7 May 2013 / Revised: 17 July 2013 / Accepted: 24 July 2013 / Published: 2 August 2013
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Abstract
Richard Rorty was a strong contextualist in his approach to philosophical and political ideas, yet his own most characteristic arguments are typically evaluated without much reference to the historical circumstances that provoked them. A key participant in the post-1980 revival of pragmatism within
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Richard Rorty was a strong contextualist in his approach to philosophical and political ideas, yet his own most characteristic arguments are typically evaluated without much reference to the historical circumstances that provoked them. A key participant in the post-1980 revival of pragmatism within North American and European intellectual circles, Rorty reaffirmed the strong connections between American pragmatism and German idealism. This move placed him at odds with scholars who forged the unity of pragmatism—united John Dewey and William James—under the banner of radical empiricism. Those engaged most enthusiastically in celebrating Rorty’s achievements, in short, defend a conception of pragmatism that Rorty sharply criticized and ideas about the history of philosophy that he did not share. His distinctive intellectual agenda is best appreciated after setting it in the context of the history of the American Left and, more specifically, the reckoning with the tumultuous 1960s that animates so many ongoing debates—inside and outside the academy—about cultural and political affairs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Legacy of Richard Rorty)
Open AccessArticle Rorty, Addams, and Social Hope
Humanities 2013, 2(3), 421-438; doi:10.3390/h2030421
Received: 28 June 2013 / Revised: 18 July 2013 / Accepted: 14 August 2013 / Published: 15 August 2013
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Abstract
This paper takes up the practice and ideas of Richard Rorty and Jane Addams, considering their work at the intersection of pragmatism and social action. It argues that both Richard Rorty and Jane Addams, each in their own way, were thinking through the
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This paper takes up the practice and ideas of Richard Rorty and Jane Addams, considering their work at the intersection of pragmatism and social action. It argues that both Richard Rorty and Jane Addams, each in their own way, were thinking through the significant challenges that confront individuals in their everyday lives: How do we adjudicate between the competing values of individual accountability and helping others in our community? This is our social test, and the way we each answer the question matters for the future of democracy and our degree of social hope. Rorty was a champion of engagement with the community, and believed that out of this experience comes our capacity to creatively weave the fabric of liberal democracy. The paper argues that Addams’s work at Hull-House in Chicago offers concrete examples of the potential of reciprocal social relations, providing practical substance to Rorty’s ideas and showing how we can create social hope through action. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Legacy of Richard Rorty)

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