By virtue of the originality and depth of its thought, Emmanuel Levinas's masterpiece, Totality and Infinity: An Essay on Exteriority, is destined to endure as one of the great works of philosophy. It is an essential text for understanding Levinas's discussion of ""the Other,"" yet it is known as a ""difficult"" book.Modeled after Norman Kemp Smith's commentary on Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, Levinas's Existential Analytic guides both new and experienced readers through Levinas's text. James R. Mensch explicates Levinas's arguments and shows their historical referents, particularly with regard to Heidegger, Husserl, and Derrida. Students using this book alongside Totality and Infinity will be able to follow its arguments and grasp the subtle phenomenological analyses that fill it.
James R. Mensch is a professor of philosophy at Charles University in the Czech Republic and at Saint Francis Xavier University in Canada. His books include, most recently, Husserl's Account of our Consciousness of Time (2010) and Embodiments: From the Body to the Body Politic (Northwestern, 2009).