How can we de-colonize critical theory from within, and reimagine the way it grounds its normative claims as well as the way it relates to post- and de-colonial theory? Amy Allen (Philosophy and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Penn State University) takes up this project in her book The End of Progress: Decolonizing the Normative Foundations of Critical Theory (Columbia Univ. Press, 2016). The work challenges the way that the Frankfurt School of critical theory constructs and deploys concepts of normativity, history, and progress, in the process offering rich interpretations of Jürgen Habermas, Axel Honneth, and Rainer Forst. Allen then turns to the work of Theodor Adorno and Michel Foucault in order to articulate a different perspective on these issues, one that enables a radical self-critique and de-colonization of critical theory. She concludes by exploring alternative means for critical theory to justify its normative claims as a way for it to more deeply engage with post- and de-colonial theory.
On this week’s episode Emily, Rachel, and B attempt to crack Max Horkheimer’sEclipse of Reason, written in 1947 in the aftermath of World War II. We focus in particular on chapter 2, “Conflicting Panaceas,” and chapter 3, “The Revolt of Nature.” We begin by discussing his somewhat surprisingFreudian turn in chapter 3, his critique of the scientific method, positivism and neo-Thomism, and his brilliant use of the term “philosophical technocracy” in critiquing the instrumental use of reason. Next, we attempt to unravel whether there is somewhat of a latent philosopher-king in his analysis of the cultural crisis of reason. In our segment on all dreams big and small, “One or Several Wolves,” we keep it brief and sweet–some dreams are just that transparent.
Requests for texts for us to discuss? Dreams for us to interpret? Advice questions for us to answer? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Follow us on Twitter. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 of the episode here. RSS feed here. Thanks to Leah Dion and to B for the music.
In this episode James talks with Doug Lain, publisher of Zero Books and the host of Zero Squared Podcast. The discussion ranges from what it means to be a radical book publisher in the 21st century, to taking Karl Marx seriously, the legacies of the Frankfurt School, as well as speculating about the aspirations and idealism of the Millennial Zeitgeist, everyone’s favorite generation.
Requests for texts for us to discuss? Dreams for us to interpret? Advice questions for us to answer? Ideas for interview? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Follow us onTwitter. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 of the episode here. RSS feed here. This episode’s music by Jordan Cass and by B.