A Politics of Understanding: The International Thought of by Reed M. Davis

By Reed M. Davis

Usually hailed as one of many maximum defenders of democratic liberalism in postwar Europe, French thinker, sociologist, and political commentator Raymond Aron (1905-1983) left in the back of a amazing quantity of released paintings on a remarkably wide variety of themes either scholarly and renowned. In A Politics of figuring out, Reed M. Davis assesses the originality and consistency of Aron's physique of labor, drawing a connection among Aron's philosophy of background and 3 of his abiding pursuits: the character of commercial society, diplomacy idea, and strategic concept. Davis starts off with a quick biography of Aron, identified for his skepticism towards political ideologies within the post-World conflict II period and as an highbrow opponent of Jean-Paul Sartre. After spending 3 years in Germany within the early Thirties, Aron, a Jew, back to France in 1933. whilst conflict broke out, he fought for a 12 months within the French military and after the autumn of France, escaped to London, the place he edited the newspaper of the unfastened French, los angeles France Libre. He again to Paris after the warfare and remained there for the remainder of his lifestyles, operating as a professor and journalist. He wrote an influential political column for Le Figaro for thirty years and authored many books, together with The Opium of the Intellectuals (1935), The Algerian Tragedy (1957), and Peace and struggle (1962). From global conflict II onward, Davis exhibits, Aron sought to build a technology of human motion that had as its target charting the way in which of human development in mild of 2 basic realities, industrialization and the lifestyles of nuclear guns. all through his lengthy profession, he constantly requested himself no matter if human lifestyles was once changing into greater because it turned extra technologically rationalized and extra scientifically complicated. In his shut research of Aron's proposal, Davis conscientiously describes how Aron fused Max Weber's neo-Kantianism with Edmund Husserl's phenomenology to create an unique conception of ancient wisdom. The relevant theoretical impulse that lies in all of Aron's works, Davis explains, is that of reconciling freedom and necessity. the way during which Aron tried to reconcile those polarities in his earliest writings had an immediate pertaining to the way during which he sought to reconcile realism and idealism in his foreign idea. through trying to deliver cause and necessity into an identical unfastened orbit, Aron attempted to build a theoretical method of diplomacy and statecraft that may carry the center floor among realism and idealism. Many students have easily deserted efforts to appreciate the extra philosophical dimensions of Aron's considering as a result of its technical trouble. With A Politics of realizing, Davis offers a concise and obviously written clarification of the elemental thoughts at paintings in Aron's philosophy and ties them on to his later considering, specially relating diplomacy.

Show description

Read or Download A Politics of Understanding: The International Thought of Raymond Aron (Political Traditions in Foreign Policy Series) PDF

Best history & theory books

The Democratic Experiment: New Directions in American Political History (Politics and Society in Twentieth-Century America)

In a chain of attention-grabbing essays that discover subject matters in American politics from the nation's founding to the current day , The Democratic scan opens up intriguing new avenues for historic examine whereas delivering daring claims concerning the tensions that experience lively American public lifestyles. Revealing the fierce struggles that experience taken position over the function of the government and the nature of consultant democracy, the authors hint the contested and dynamic evolution of the nationwide polity.

Education and Social Mobility in the Soviet Union 1921-1934

This can be a heritage of Soviet schooling coverage 1921-34 that areas distinctive emphasis upon the subject matter of social mobility via schooling. one of many hitherto untold tales of Soviet background is the making of the 'Brezhnev generation', a cohort of younger employees and Communists despatched to better schooling throughout the First Five-Year Plan (1928-1932) and consequently catapulted into management positions within the wake of the nice Purge of 1937/38.

Theology and the Soul of the Liberal State (Graven Images)

Emerging calls in either the us and out of the country for theologizing nationwide agendas have renewed examinations approximately even if liberal states can accommodate such courses with no both endangering electorate' rights or trivializing non secular matters. traditional knowledge means that theology is inevitably unfriendly to the liberal nation, yet neither philosophical research nor empirical argument has convincingly tested that end.

The Changing Academic Profession: Major Findings of a Comparative Survey

This publication presents an summary at the significant findings of a questionnaire survey of educational career in overseas viewpoint. greater than 25,000 professors and junior employees at universities and different associations of upper schooling at nearly 20 international locations from around the globe offer info on their operating state of affairs, their perspectives and actions.

Additional info for A Politics of Understanding: The International Thought of Raymond Aron (Political Traditions in Foreign Policy Series)

Example text

An historian? A political economist? ” 82 I believe they are. At the center of Aron’s sociopolitical thought there is a relatively simple “categorial framework” that bestows unity and coherence upon his entire life’s work. Categorial frameworks (a term I borrow from Stephen Körner) describes comprehensive interpretations of the human condition that establish the basic distinctions and logical relations that are believed to inhere in reality. To use an older but perhaps more familiar term, a categorial framework is akin to a weltanschauung, or worldview, a quasi-theoretical construct that constitutes that center of thought and concern from which an individual’s subsequent reflections draw their fire and acquire their force.

Aron’s great accomplishment was to join both methods together, to create an approach to concept formation which wove together description and construction into a working, functional philosophy of history. Aron’s interest in Husserl leads to one of the more curious puzzles of Aron’s scholarship. Throughout his life Aron frequently acknowledged his intellectual indebtedness to Weber and Husserl. Much has been written of his “elective affinity” for Weber, yet almost nothing has been said of his interest in Husserl.

There was something of the unpredictable in Aron’s personality as well as in his politics. Although Aron’s unflappable, methodical lucidity was universally recognized as his trademark, his discipline and self-control were sometimes tested by passions that his reason could not always contain. Writing for Le Monde, the Left-leaning Parisian daily, Pierre Vinsson-Ponté offered a fascinating observation: There remains in his character an element of anxiety, almost of agitation. Now aged 62, he has not lost the cold but twinkling look in his blue eyes; he still has the old liveliness of manner, the eager quickness and that mixture of profundity and lightness which softens the slightly stiff dignity of the maître à penser when university life keeps him in permanent contact with the young.

Download PDF sample

Rated 4.97 of 5 – based on 6 votes