Metaphysics after Auschwitz: Suffering and Hope in Adorno’s Negative Dialectics.

Zuidervaart, Lambert. “Metaphysics After Auschwitz: Suffering and Hope in Adorno’s Negative Dialectics.” In Adorno and the Need in Thinking: New Critical Essays, pp. 133-62. Ed. Donald Burke et al. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2007.

Adorno’s Negative Dialectics challenges the assumption that contemporary philosophy needs to be “postmetaphysical.” Philosophy must incorporate “metaphysical experience,” he argues. Otherwise it cannot engage in thorough social critique, remain unswervingly self-critical, and hold open historical possibilities for a different society. Revising Adorno’s famous claim about poetry after Auschwitz, I suggest that to write suffering and hope out of philosophy is barbaric. Contemporary philosophy cannot afford self-imposed silence in an age of global destruction. Much of this essay appears, lightly revised, in Chapters 1 and 2 of  Social Philosophy after Adorno (Cambridge UP, 2007).

In the Phrygian Mode: Neo-Calvinism, Antiquity and the Lamentations of Reformed Philosophy

Sweetman, Robert, ed., In the Phrygian Mode: Neo-Calvinism, Antiquity and the Lamentations of Reformed Philosophy. Lanham MD: University Press of America, 2007.

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This volume of essays emerges out of a small conference exploring the relationship between Christianity and Greco-Roman civilization, above all that civilization’s characteristic patterns of philosophical thought. All the essays take as their field of investigation the neo-Calvinist current within Dutch Protestantism and the elaboration in the 1920s and 1930s of “Calvinistic” philosophy as one of its most distinctive effects. Opening and closing chapters, penned by the volume editor, frame the essays that make up the body of the volume in terms of the intellectual and spiritual orientation of Protestantism and its scholarly efforts at the birth of neo-Calvinism and “Calvinistic” philosophy, on the one hand, and during that philosophy’s development in the decades between its foundation and the end of the last millennium, on the other.

Social Philosophy after Adorno

Zuidervaart, Lambert. Social Philosophy after Adorno. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

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This book examines what is living and what is dead in the social philosophy of Theodor W. Adorno, the most important philosopher and social critic in Germany after World War II. When he died in 1969, Adorno’s successors abandoned his critical-utopian passions. Habermas, in particular, rejected or ignored Adorno’s central insights on the negative effects of capitalism and new technologies upon nature and human life. In this book, Lambert Zuidervaart reclaims Adorno’s insights from Habermasian neglect, while taking up legitimate Habermasian criticisms. He also addresses the prospects for radical and democratic transformations of an increasingly globalized world. The book proposes a provocative social philosophy “after Adorno.”

Wisdom and Curriculum: Christian Schooling After Postmodernity

Blomberg, Douglas Gordon. Wisdom and curriculum: Christian schooling after postmodernity. Sioux Center, IA: Dordt Press, 2007.

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Wisdom and Curriculum explores a biblical view of wisdom as a basis for a Christian approach to schooling, proposing an alternative to the conventional model grounded in the theory into practice paradigm of Classical philosophy. The comparison of pre-modern biblical notions with those characterised as ‘postmodern’ is of particular interest, as there are perhaps surprising resonances with – and of course, quite significant differences from – the latter. The book is informed by theological and philosophical insights and is firmly contextualised in the scholarly literature. In style and substance, however, it seeks to address teachers first and foremost, with a focus on supporting them in their professional calling. Indeed, the book has a noticeable biographical tenor, as Blomberg often references his own experience as a teacher and curriculum developer at Mount Evelyn Christian School and elsewhere.

This book is under contract for publication in Korean.