Caring for the Soul in a Postmodern Age: Politics and Phenomenology in the Thought of Jan Patocka

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SUNY Press, Aug 29, 2002 - Philosophy - 259 pages
In 1977 the sixty-nine-year-old Czech philosopher Jan Patocūka died from a brain hemorrhage following a series of interrogations by the Czechoslovak secret police. A student of Husserl and Heidegger, he had been arrested, along with young playwright Vįclav Havel, for publicly opposing the hypocrisy of the Czechoslovak Communist regime. Patocūka had dedicated himself as a philosopher to laying the groundwork of what he termed a life in truth.

This book analyzes Patocūka s philosophy and political thought and illuminates the synthesis in his work of Socratic philosophy and its injunction to care for the soul. In bridging the gap, not only between Husserl and Heidegger, but also between postmodern and ancient philosophy, Patocūka presents a model of democratic politics that is ethical without being metaphysical, and transcendental without being foundational.
 

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Contents

A Philosophy of History and a Theory of Politics
83
Politics and Ethics in the Twentieth Century
121
Foundations and Philosophy
161
Patockas Reception in the EnglishLanguage
185
Notes
207
Works Cited
241
Index
251
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About the author (2002)

Edward F. Findlay received a Ph.D. in Political Science from Louisiana State University.

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