Seyla Benhabib

Seyla Benhabib is Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Philosophy at Yale University and author of The Claims of Culture: Equality and Diversity in the Global Era and other books.

  • Pragmatism, Critique, Judgment

    Pragmatism, Critique, Judgment

    Essays for Richard J. Bernstein

    Seyla Benhabib and Nancy Fraser

    The work of Richard J. Bernstein has achieved a groundbreaking synthesis of the analytical and continental modes of thought. Countering the highly technical metaphysical and epistemological puzzles of analytic philosophy in the early 1960s, Bernstein offered a model of philosophy in a democratic society as the work of the engaged public intellectual. Working within the tradition of American pragmatism, he also changed that tradition by opening it to the international intellectual currents of phenomenology, deconstructionism, and critical theory. These essays by leading philosophers and social thinkers pay tribute to Bernstein and reflect the themes that have engaged him throughout his career. Pragmatism, Critique, Judgment opens with a group of essays that examine the place of philosophy in a democratic society; included in this section are Richard Rorty's exploration of the legacy of American pragmatism and Jürgen Habermas's reconsideration of ethics in philosophy. The essays in the second section examine postpositivist social critique and include Jacques Derrida's consideration of the philosophical paradoxes of the death penalty. The third group of essays considers the theme of radical evil, and includes discussions of Bernstein's nuanced reading of Hannah Arendt. The book ends with a biographical essay based in part on a series of conversations with Bernstein himself.

    • Hardcover $17.75
    • Paperback $35.00
  • On Max Horkheimer

    On Max Horkheimer

    New Perspectives

    Seyla Benhabib, Wolfgang Bonss, and John McCole

    This collection of essays by German and American scholars will help familiarize English-speaking readers with the most important results of this recent work and, in conjunction with a companion volume of Horkheimer's essays, Between Philosophy and Social Science, should provide a much fuller and deeper picture of his role in the history of modern social theory.

    Max Horkheimer (1895-1973), one of the founders of critical theory and a sometime colleague of Herbert Marcuse, Theodor Adorno, and Walter Benjamin, has become a subject of renewed attention and appreciation in Germany in the last decade. This collection of essays by German and American scholars will help familiarize English-speaking readers with the most important results of this recent work and, in conjunction with a companion volume of Horkheimer's essays, Between Philosophy and Social Science, should provide a much fuller and deeper picture of his role in the history of modern social theory.

    • Hardcover $44.00
    • Paperback $8.75
  • The Communicative Ethics Controversy

    The Communicative Ethics Controversy

    Seyla Benhabib and Fred R. Dallmayr

    This timely reader in moral philosophy addresses a controversy that strongly affected recent European reflections on the relevance of ethics for theories of democratic institutions and democratic legitimacy. The debate centers around the idea of a communicative ethics as articulated by Jürgen Habermas and Karl-Otto Apel, and it is representative both of recent attempts to bridge the gap between Continental and Anglo-American philosophy and of the turn to language that has characterized much of recent philosophy.The Communicative Ethics Controversy illustrates philosophical dialogue in action, moving from theses to counterarguments to rejoinders. Theoretical statements by Habermas, Apel, and two of their leading students, Dietrich Böhler and Robert Alexy, are followed by a series of five arguments by their leading critics, who represent viewpoints ranging from Kantian idealism to Wittgensteinian ordinary-language theory. Fred Dallmayr's introduction and Seyla Benhabib's incisive conclusion place the debate in perspective, bringing it up to date and relating it to the Anglo-American context.

    Contributors Robert Alexy, Karl-Otto Apel, Seyla Benhabib, Dietrich Bohler, Jurgen Habermas, Otfried Hoffe, Karl Heinz Ilting, Hermann Lubbe, Herbert Schnadelbach, Albrecht Wellmer

    • Hardcover $37.50
    • Paperback $35.00

Contributor

  • Critical Theory and Interaction Design

    Critical Theory and Interaction Design

    Jeffrey Bardzell, Shaowen Bardzell, and Mark Blythe

    Classic texts by thinkers from Althusser to Žižek alongside essays by leaders in interaction design and HCI show the relevance of critical theory to interaction design.

    Why should interaction designers read critical theory? Critical theory is proving unexpectedly relevant to media and technology studies. The editors of this volume argue that reading critical theory—understood in the broadest sense, including but not limited to the Frankfurt School—can help designers do what they want to do; can teach wisdom itself; can provoke; and can introduce new ways of seeing. They illustrate their argument by presenting classic texts by thinkers in critical theory from Althusser to Žižek alongside essays in which leaders in interaction design and HCI describe the influence of the text on their work. For example, one contributor considers the relevance Umberto Eco's “Openness, Information, Communication” to digital content; another reads Walter Benjamin's “The Author as Producer” in terms of interface designers; and another reflects on the implications of Judith Butler's Gender Trouble for interaction design. The editors offer a substantive introduction that traces the various strands of critical theory.

    Taken together, the essays show how critical theory and interaction design can inform each other, and how interaction design, drawing on critical theory, might contribute to our deepest needs for connection, competency, self-esteem, and wellbeing.

    Contributors Jeffrey Bardzell, Shaowen Bardzell, Olav W. Bertelsen, Alan F. Blackwell, Mark Blythe, Kirsten Boehner, John Bowers, Gilbert Cockton, Carl DiSalvo, Paul Dourish, Melanie Feinberg, Beki Grinter, Hrönn Brynjarsdóttir Holmer, Jofish Kaye, Ann Light, John McCarthy, Søren Bro Pold, Phoebe Sengers, Erik Stolterman, Kaiton Williams., Peter Wright

    Classic texts Louis Althusser, Aristotle, Roland Barthes, Seyla Benhabib, Walter Benjamin, Judith Butler, Arthur Danto, Terry Eagleton, Umberto Eco, Michel Foucault, Wolfgang Iser, Alan Kaprow, Søren Kierkegaard, Bruno Latour, Herbert Marcuse, Edward Said, James C. Scott, Slavoj Žižek

    • Hardcover $90.00
  • Hegel's Ontology and the Theory of Historicity

    Herbert Marcuse

    This was Herbert Marcuse's first book on Hegel, written in the early 1930s when he was under the strong influence of Martin Heidegger. It provides a still unequaled Heideggerian reading of Hegel's thought that seeks the defining characteristics of "historicity" - what it means to say that a historical event happens. These ideas were foundational for Marcuse; they express a tradition known as "phenomenological Marxism," subsequently represented by Jean-Paul Sartre and Maurice Merleau-Ponty and by some members of the Praxis group in Yugoslavia.The book is in two parts. The first analyzes Hegel's Logic in order to identify its ontological problematic or theory of being; by focusing on Hegel's Early Theological Writings and the Phenomenology of Spirit, the second part argues that the concept of Life in its historicity was in fact the original foundation of Hegelian ontology. Clearly this is a "purer" form of philosophizing than Marcuse was to pursue after he joined the Institut für Sozialforschung, discovered Freud, and distanced himself from Heidegger's philosophy. But there is a definite connection between his analysis of historicity in this important early work and his later attempts to understand the underlying dynamic of contemporary history and society in such books as One-Dimensional Man and Eros and Civilization.Hegel's Ontology and the Theory of Historicity is included in the series Studies in Contemporary German Social Thought, edited by Thomas McCarthy,

    • Hardcover $37.50
    • Paperback $15.95