By Claire Elise Katz

ISBN-10: 0415310520

ISBN-13: 9780415310529

Emmanuel Levinas (1905-1995) was once one of many finest thinkers of the 20 th century. His paintings influencing quite a lot of intellectuals similar to Maurice Blanchot, Jacques Derrida, Luce Irigaray and Jean-Luc Marion.

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Extra resources for Emmanuel Levinas Critical Assessments V2: Critical Assessments of Leading Philosophers

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That is to say, professional accounts are contingent upon available vocabularies. Professionals may be free THE REFLEXIVE PRACTITIONER AS ‘TRICKSTER’ 23 and purposeful agents, but not in conditions of their own making. Sometimes vocabularies need stirring up a little. Lively talk and lively culture Hyde says of the trickster: [W]hat tricksters quite regularly do is create lively talk where there has been silence, or where speech has been prohibited. Trickster speaks freshly where language has been blocked, gone dead, or lost its charm.

Jan took his blood upstairs. Nurse: He’s annoyed with me. LN: What, why? Nurse: I wouldn’t let him go upstairs and he’s hanging round the office and I’m like there’s confidential stuff here. LN: He’s looking for that Bob Marley tape (laughter). See that’s another difference with upstairs like they let them hang around the nurse station and stuff and with generic poorly kids that’s ok, but with our kids they’re like rooting through the notes. Upstairs they just get ingratiated really. The anorexics do it, don’t they, sit round.

Rorty calls these words a THE REFLEXIVE PRACTITIONER AS ‘TRICKSTER’ 27 person’s ‘final vocabulary’, as beyond them language breaks down – there are no more possibilities. Or, as Wittgenstein (1961:115) puts it, ‘the limits of my language mean the limits of my world’. Professionals, like other human agents, have their final vocabularies. It is worth quoting Rorty (1989: 73–4) at some length here as he explains well the liberating effects of the ironist. I shall define an ironist as someone who fulfils three conditions: (1) She has radical and continuing doubts about the final vocabulary she currently uses, because she has been impressed by other vocabularies taken as final by people or books she has encountered; (2) she realizes that argument phrased in her present vocabulary can neither underwrite nor dissolve these doubts; (3) insofar as she philosophizes about her situation, she does not think her vocabulary is closer to reality than the others, that it is in touch with a power not herself .

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Emmanuel Levinas Critical Assessments V2: Critical Assessments of Leading Philosophers by Claire Elise Katz


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