Before the voice of reason : echoes of responsibility in by David Michael Kleinberg-Levin

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By David Michael Kleinberg-Levin

Sooner than the Voice of cause is a phenomenological critique of cause grounded in our event of the voices that already deal with us and summon us sooner than the emergence of the voice of cause. partially one, David Michael Kleinberg-Levin explores the voices of nature and attracts on Merleau-Ponty's phenomenology to supply a brand new mind set approximately environmental accountability. partly , he appears on the voice of the ethical legislations and the voices of different people, advances a extra nuanced account of Levinas's contrast among "Saying" and "Said," and proposes a brand new argument for our accountability to the opposite.

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Hardcover: 315 pages
Publisher: Nijhoff, 1976 (Photomechanical reprint of: 3rd printing, 1971 [first: 1964])
Language: English
ISBN-10: 9024702488
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Sample text

There is, in this historical hour, affected so acutely by the traumas of rational disenchantment, a disavowed remembrance of nature that summons us, urgently demanding our thought and action. Thus, what will be offered here is a phenomenology that, in working with subjectivity, attentive to the echoes of nature persisting in the human voice, recalls our eco-logical responsibility and guides our thinking into the realm of objective spirit. It is in this realm that nature is now revealing its suffering.

Can nature again become normative for us—as it was, we surmise, for the ancients? What reconciliation can spirit, realizing its guilt and responsibility, now hope for, since, even in its dying, or rather, precisely in and because of its dying, nature is still powerful enough to make its moral claim and compel a responsivity befitting the plight? There is, in this historical hour, affected so acutely by the traumas of rational disenchantment, a disavowed remembrance of nature that summons us, urgently demanding our thought and action.

The universality that this voice claims to defend is powerless and worthless unless it acknowledges the ethical significance of the voices that come before it—acknowledges the fact of a responsibility already avowed long before its rational institution. We need to oppose the reduction of the “logos” to Reason—and, a fortiori, the reduction of the ordinary human voice to the voice of Reason. Despite Plato’s argument for privileging the voice and its speech, the history of philosophy, as I am reading it, tells a story of the dire forgetfulness into which, within this discourse, the experience of the human voice and the voices of nature have silently faded away.

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