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Making a Difference in Cultural Politics: Rorty’s Interventions

Making a Difference in Cultural Politics: Rorty’s Interventions Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 1 (June 2011), 85­95 Editions Rodopi © 2011 This article examines some general features of what Richard Rorty called "cultural politics." It attempts to explain why Rorty thought it both possible and desirable to give politics priority over ontology. He set aside traditional philosophical questions concerning what there is, while making those worth retaining subservient to cultural negotiation. Rorty's conception of cultural politics can perhaps avoid the complaint that by failing to deliver a substantial version of objectivity, he falls hostage to dangerous relativism. All attempts to name an authority which is superior to that of society are disguised moves in the game of cultural politics. Richard Rorty1 Many of those who have announced the end of the quest for the hidden, standard-setting reality have merely continued it under other names. Roberto Unger2 1. Introduction Richard Rorty exerted an enlivening effect on many different areas of culture. But in this paper, I am not going to discuss his influence on a case by case basis. This is something I attempt to do, if only rather sketchily, in the final chapter of a recent book.3 There, I focus mainly on literature, law, feminism, continental http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Pragmatism Brill

Making a Difference in Cultural Politics: Rorty’s Interventions

Contemporary Pragmatism , Volume 8 (1): 85 – Apr 21, 2011

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Copyright 2011 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1572-3429
eISSN
1875-8185
DOI
10.1163/18758185-90000184
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 1 (June 2011), 85­95 Editions Rodopi © 2011 This article examines some general features of what Richard Rorty called "cultural politics." It attempts to explain why Rorty thought it both possible and desirable to give politics priority over ontology. He set aside traditional philosophical questions concerning what there is, while making those worth retaining subservient to cultural negotiation. Rorty's conception of cultural politics can perhaps avoid the complaint that by failing to deliver a substantial version of objectivity, he falls hostage to dangerous relativism. All attempts to name an authority which is superior to that of society are disguised moves in the game of cultural politics. Richard Rorty1 Many of those who have announced the end of the quest for the hidden, standard-setting reality have merely continued it under other names. Roberto Unger2 1. Introduction Richard Rorty exerted an enlivening effect on many different areas of culture. But in this paper, I am not going to discuss his influence on a case by case basis. This is something I attempt to do, if only rather sketchily, in the final chapter of a recent book.3 There, I focus mainly on literature, law, feminism, continental

Journal

Contemporary PragmatismBrill

Published: Apr 21, 2011

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