The Norms of Answerability: Social Theory Between Bakhtin and Habermas

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SUNY Press, Jan 24, 2002 - Social Science - 250 pages
Greg M. Nielsen brings Mikhail Bakhtin s ethics and aesthetics into a dialogue with social theory that responds to the sense of ambivalence and uncertainty at the core of modern societies. Nielsen situates a social theory between Bakhtin s norms of answerability and Jürgen Habermas s sociology, ethics, and discourse theory of democracy in a way that emphasizes the creative dimension in social action without reducing explanation to the emotional and volitional impulse of the individual or collective actor. Some of the classical sources that support this mediated position are traced to Alexander Vvedenskij s and Georg Simmel s critiques of Kant s ethics, Hermann Cohen s philosophy of fellowship, and Max Weber s and George Herbert Mead s theories of action. In the shift from Bakhtin s theory of interpersonal relations to a dialogic theory of societal events that defends the bold claim that law and politics should not be completely separated from the specificity of ethical and cultural communities, a study of citizenship and national identity is developed.
 

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Contents

THEORY ON THE BORDERS OF SOCIOLOGY
1
The State of Bakhtin Studies
4
Creativity and General Sociological Theory
11
The Bridge between Culture and the Political
18
DIVERSITY AND TRANSCULTURAL ETHICS
23
Disciplinary Orientations
27
Decentered Subjects and Critiques of Discourse Ethics
31
The Creative Side of the Normative
36
Influences and Steps
106
ACTION AND EROS KANTWEBERBAKHTIN
109
Duties Toward the Body Concerning the Sexual Impulse
110
Action Ethics and Eros
112
The Fourth Postulate and BodyDialogue
117
Eros and Action Today
122
REFLEXIVE SUBJECTIVITY MEADBAKHTIN
125
Philosophical and Disciplinary Orientations
127

The Normative Side of Creativity
42
Between the Creativity and Normativity of the Act
45
COMMUNICATIVE ACTION OR DIALOGUE?
49
Communicative Action and Moral Development
50
The Limits of Universal Reason
56
Mixing the Word and Style
59
THE WORLD OF OTHERS WORDS
67
Bakhtin and Voloshinov on the Subject of the Utterance
69
Social and Ethical Worlds of Dialogue in Dostoevsky
72
The Frankfurt Tradition
77
Habermass Break
80
Genres of Discourse in Literature and in Theory
81
From Dostoevsky to Calvino
83
Convergence and Difference
86
ON THE SOURCES OF YOUNG BAKHTINS ETHICS KANT VVEDENSKIJ SIMMEL COHEN
89
Kants Three Postulates
93
Vvedenskijs Fourth Postulate
94
Simmels Shadow
96
Bakhtin and the Formal Ought
99
Cohens Discovery of Man as Fellowman
102
The Ambiguity of Experience
129
Murder Confession and Community
133
Why the Subject Is Behind Us
134
Action Inside and Outside the Subject
136
CITIZENSHIP AND NATIONAL IDENTITY
143
On the Dialogue Between Ethnos and Demos
147
Identity
150
For and against the Nation
155
A DIALOGUE ON THE NATION IN POSTNATIONAL TIMES
167
The Quebec Case
172
The Nation as Subjectless Communication
183
The Nation as a Politics of Concession
188
On National Minorities
196
A Fourth Way?
198
CONCLUSION ON CULTURE AND THE POLITICAL
201
NOTES
209
BIBLIOGRAPHY
225
INDEX
241
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About the author (2002)

Greg M. Nielsen is Associate Professor of Sociology at Concordia University and Adjunct Professor in the Graduate Programme in Social and Political Thought at York University. He is also the author of Le Canada de Radio-Canada: Sociologie Critique et Dialogisme Culturel.

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