3.82 (34 ratings by Goodreads)
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This is the first English-language translation of Michel Henry's compelling philosophical critique of capitalism, technology and education. "Barbarism" represents a critique, from the perspective of Michel Henry's unique philosophy of life, of the increasing potential of science and technology to destroy the roots of culture and the value of the individual human being. For Henry, barbarism is the result of a devaluation of human life and culture that can be traced back to the spread of quantification, the scientific method and technology over all aspects of modern life. The book develops a compelling critique of capitalism, technology and education and provides a powerful insight into the political implications of Henry's work. It also opens up a new dialogue with other influential cultural critics, such as Marx, Heidegger and Husserl. First published in French in 1987, "Barbarism" aroused great interest as well as virulent criticism. Today the book reveals what for Henry is a cruel reality: the tragic feeling of powerlessness experienced by the cultured person.
Above all he argues for the importance of returning to philosophy in order to analyse the root causes of barbarism in our world. "The Continuum Impacts" are seminal works by the finest minds in contemporary thought, including Adorno, Badiou, Derrida, Heidegger and Deleuze. They are works of such power that they changed the philosophical and cultural landscape when they were first published and continue to resonate today. They represent landmark texts in the fields of philosophy, popular culture, politics and theology.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 168 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 7.62mm | 206g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1441132651
  • 9781441132659
  • 566,693

Table of contents

Preface to the Second Edition; Translator's Introduction: What Has Never Been Seen; 1. Culture and Barbarism; 2. Science Judged by the Criteria of Art; 3. Science Alone: Technology; 4. The Sickness of Life; 5. Ideologies of Barbarism; 6. Practices of Barbarism; 7. The Destruction of the University; Index.
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Review quote

'Henry is one of the most exciting and radical thinkers of the last half-century. In this excellent translation of Barbarism, we get a sense of this radicalism is his critique of the "Galilean" principle - especially with regard to politics but also in his approach to art, ideology, technology, and education. It will be an invaluable addition to his other works already in English.' -- Professor John Mullarkey, Kingston University, UK. 'Scott Davidson delivers a much welcome translation of Michel Henry's provocative work on culture and critique. Barbarism is Henry's subtle radicalization of E. Husserl's analysis of the lifeworld and the crisis of the sciences. For Henry, the crisis is nothing short of barbarism: a reversal of culture which is revealed in the social, political, and epistemic practices that inhibit the self-movement of absolute Life. Yet the work itself, Barbarism, functions as a timely call to reverse this reversal, and to renew the dynamic intimacy of Self-knowledge.' -- Anthony Steinbock, Professor of Philosophy at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, USA
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About Michel Henry

Scott Davidson is Associate Professor and Chair of the Philosophy Department at Oklahoma City University. He is the translator of Michel Henry's works: Material Phenomenology (Fordham, 2008) and Seeing the Invisible (Continuum, 2009). He recently edited a double-issue devoted to Ricoeur in the Journal of French Philosophy. Michel Henry (1922-2002) was a leading French philosopher and novelist. He was Professor of Philosophy at the University of Montpellier, France and author of five novels and numerous philosophical works.
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Rating details

34 ratings
3.82 out of 5 stars
5 21% (7)
4 53% (18)
3 21% (7)
2 0% (0)
1 6% (2)
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