By Rahel Jaeggi, Frederick Neuhouser, Frederick Neuhouser, Alan E. Smith
The Hegelian-Marxist suggestion of alienation fell out of fashion after the postmetaphysical rejection of humanism and essentialist perspectives of human nature. during this ebook Rahel Jaeggi attracts at the Hegelian philosophical culture, phenomenological analyses grounded in sleek conceptions of organisation, and up to date paintings within the analytical culture to reconceive alienation because the absence of a significant dating to oneself and others, which manifests in emotions of helplessness and the despondent reputation of ossified social roles and expectations.
A revived method of alienation is helping serious social concept have interaction with phenomena equivalent to meaninglessness, isolation, and indifference. by way of severing alienation's hyperlink to a troublesome notion of human essence whereas maintaining its social-philosophical content material, Jaeggi presents assets for a renewed critique of social pathologies, a much-neglected main issue in modern liberal political philosophy. Her paintings revisits the arguments of Rousseau, Hegel, Kierkegaard, and Heidegger, putting them in discussion with Thomas Nagel, Bernard Williams, and Charles Taylor.
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Additional resources for Alienation
The world that emerges in this way is made up of meaningful relations: only in the context of this world does the hammer exist as something “for hammering,” and only in that context is it comprehensible as such. Heidegger’s distinction between the present-at-hand and the ready-tohand—which is crucial for the problems of objectiﬁcation and alienation— can be understood as a distinction between two ways of relating to the world. Things as they confront us in the context of a world exist for us as ready-tohand (in the previously described sense of their function and signiﬁcance) in the performance of actions.
Loosely formulated, someone who does not relate to herself as to someone who has her own life to lead reiﬁes herself insofar as she denies the character of her life activities as praxis, as activities that she must decide on. This failure of apprehension—the “systematic blinding of inauthenticity”23—rests, in turn, on the ﬂattening out of a conceptual distinction that is of crucial importance for existential philosophy: the distinction between existence (Existenz) and being present-at-hand or, as Sartre puts it, between essence and existence.
Put differently, the product of her speciﬁc labor—her speciﬁc contribution to the production of the pin—does not ﬁt for her into a meaningful whole, a unity with signiﬁcance. The same pairing of powerlessness and loss of meaning (or impoverishment) marks the worker’s alienation from her own activity. Alienated labor is, on the one hand, unfree activity, labor in which and into which one is forced. In her labor the alienated worker is not the master of what she does. Standing under foreign command, her labor is determined by an other, or heteronomous.