Socrates and Dionysus: Philosophy and Art in Dialogue by Cambridge Scholars Publishing (Hardback, 2013)
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- DescriptionSocrates and Dionysus engages and seeks to redraw the boundaries between philosophy and poetry, science and art. Friedrich Nietzsche argues in his work The Birth of Tragedy that science conquers art, especially the tragic art of the Dionysian poet of ancient Greece. Appealing to the natural, primeval self that is suppressed but t extinguished by the kwledge of culture, Dionysian tragedy establishes contact with our bodies and their deepest longings. Science and philosophy, associated with the 'Socratism' of the theoretical man, celebrate the human mind in particular and the mind or rationality of the universe more generally. According to Nietzsche, it is Euripides who destroys the Dionysian entirely. Euripides celebrated the unadorned individual because only the individual, separated from their god, is intelligible or accessible to human reason; he insisted that art be comprehended by mind or that it be rationally understood. Euripides was possessed of such a rationalizing drive, Nietzsche claims, because his primary audience was Socrates. It is Socrates, therefore, who is the true opponent of Dionysus. Following Nietzsche's bifurcation between philosophy and art, postmodern political philosopher Richard Rorty rejects the tendency of philosophy to posit absolute, universal truths and turns to the concept of 'redescription' which he associates with the 'wisdom of the vel'. The vel is wise because it posits the relative truths and perspectives of the various individuals, societies and cultures that it represents. As an art form, it can therefore include every possible perspective of every particular situation, event or person. New interdisciplinary fields in politics, literature and film are giving rise to an expanding community of scholars who disagree with the approaches taken by Nietzsche and Rorty. These scholars are shedding light on the ways in which philosophy and art are friends rather than enemies. They seek to bridge the theoretical and ethical gaps between the world of 'fiction' and the world of 'fact', of art and science. There appears to be a fundamental tension between literary-artistic and scientific projects. Whereas the artist seeks to recreate human experience, thereby evoking basic ethical issues, the scientist apparently seeks ethically-neutral, evidence-based facts as the constituents of our kwledge of reality. Chapters in this volume, however, will reconsider how artists, philosophers and film-makers have addressed and attempted to reconcile the artist's language of rmativity and the scientist's language of facticity.
- Author BiographyAnn Ward is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Political Science at Campion College, University of Regina. She is also the author of Herodotus and the Philosophy of Empire, and has edited Matter and Form: From Natural Science to Political Philosophy, and Socrates: Reason or Unreason as the Foundation of European Identity. She has also co-edited (with Lee Ward) Natural Right and Political Philosophy: Essays in Honor of Catherine Zuckert and Michael Zuckert, and The Ashgate Research Companion to Federalism.
- PublisherCambridge Scholars Publishing
- Date of Publication01/07/2013
- Place of PublicationNewcastle upon Tyne
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintCambridge Scholars Publishing
- Weight517 g
- Width148 mm
- Height212 mm
- Spine25 mm
- Edited byAnn Ward
- Format DetailsWith dust jacket
- Edition Statement1st Unabridged
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