Lessons of philosophy for a cultural revolution
1978 • 141 pages • Price : 15 €

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Summary

This is an initial essay inspired by Julien Benda and Jacques Monod: the world is disorder and entropy as predicted by the 19th century version of the second principle of thermodynamic which is being eclipsed by the school of Prigogine. In that pessimistic view, only Man is rational, hence his estrangement in the world. As to cultural revolution, it puts on trial those who consider past thinkers as museum specimens and regard philosophy as their private domain.
The book consists of four lessons inspired by Parmenides. Negligence is not the negation of reality but man's capability to oversee it and switch off his intelligence. Squalor is mere deception considering that nothingness cannot be attractive since it has no existence whatsoever. According to the Imaginary, only the extant can be pictured and imagination consists only to rearrange real elements within a different framework. Human nature as described in Le hasard et la nécessité (Chance and necessity) is an order that maintains itself and develops in a world globally inclining towards disorder.
These lessons also try to classify the different philosophies according to whether they accept or not the notion of human nature. But at the end of the book the author comes up against The new alliance of Prigogine and realizes that determinism is not strict and the world has a history and it can evolve from disorder to order so that man is not a stranger moving against the current of history.

Excerpts / Classified by themes


Humour, contestation, provocation…

A philosophical bigot: portrait of a prig
Xanthippe or inverted maieutics ... or philosophical abortion
Portrait of a Pupil (a pastiche of Plotinus)

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