In this unique and comprehensive book, George McCarthy examines the influence of Greek philosophy, literature, arts, and politics on the development of twentieth-century German social thought. McCarthy demonstrates that the classical spirit vitalized thinkers such as Weber, Heidegger, Freud, Marcuse, Arendt, Gadamer, and Habermas. With the romancing of antiquity, they transformed their understanding of the modern self, political community, and Enlightenment rationality. By viewing contemporary social theory from the framework of the classical world, McCarthy argues, we are capable of thinking beyond the limits of modernity to new possibilities of human reason, science, beauty, and social justice.
George E. McCarthy teaches social theory, ethics, and political economy at Kenyon College. In 1994-95, he was a Senior Fulbright Research Fellow in Germany. Among his many books are Marx and the Ancients: Classical Ethics, Social Justice, and Nineteenth-Century Political Economy, Marx and Aristotle: Nineteenth-Century German Social Theory and Classical Economy, and Dialectics and Decadence: Echoes of Antiquity in Marx and Nietzsche.
Chapter 1 Acknowledgments Chapter 2 Introduction Part 3 Part I: In the Shadow of Ancient Parnassos: the Coming of the Cosmic Night Chapter 4 Children of Oedipus and the Tragedy of Modernity Chapter 5 Ancient Economy and Classical Tragedy Part 6 Part II: Phenomenology and the Greeks: Praxis as Understanding Chapter 7 Classical Antiquity and the Metaphysics of Nihilism Part 8 Part III: The Gods of Greece and the Reenchantment of Reason Chapter 9 Recovering Sensuality and Liberating Reason Chapter 10 Exorcising plato and the Tyranny of Reasons Chapter 11 Twilight of Athens and the Origins of Hermeneutics Part 12 Part IV: Eclipse of Antiquity and the Revaluation of the enlightenment Chapter 13 Reason and Justice After Antiquity Chapter 14 Notes Chapter 15 Index