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Feenberg discusses the possibility of a radical reform of industrial society. He challenges the assumption that modern society, with its emphasis on technological reasoning, has condemned its members to mindless work and subservience to the dictates of management. In doing so, he presents a new interpretation of the relationship between technology, rationality, and democracy.
 
Thesis (Ph. D. -- Technische Universität, Berlin). Includes bibliographical references (p. 161-168) and index.
 
Parisi, Luciano. Alberto Caracciolo e gli scrittori italiani del primo Ottocento. Modern Language Notes. 116:1 (2001), pp. 98-129. © The Johns Hopkins University Press. Reprinted with permission of The Johns Hopkins University Press.
 
Seit dem Schwund theonomer Ordnung mit dem Ende des Mittelalters konnte Legitimität nicht mehr ohne weiteres in Bezug auf Gott gedacht werden. Die Neuzeit warf den Menschen auf sich selbst zurück. Von nun an musste er sich gerade gegen einen Willkürgott und gegen eine entfremdete Wirklichkeit behaupten, in der er keine Vorsehung mehr walten sah. Hans Blumenberg erkennt in dieser Selbstbehauptung eine neue Art von Legitimität, die keiner theologischen Rückversicherung mehr bedarf. Er stellt sich damit bewusst gegen die von Carl Schmitt im Zusammenhang seiner Staatslehre formulierte These, alle prägnanten Begriffe der Neuzeit seien säkularisierte theologische Begriffe, und verändert den Sinn der fraglichen Epoche grundsätzlich. Während ihre Neuheit nach Schmitt allein darin besteht, dass sie die von ihr unverändert wiederholten Gedanken als strukturell theologische nicht mehr erkennt, weil sie sich einem Weltbild der Immanenz verschrieben hat, sieht Blumenberg die Neuzeit aus den alten Verbindlichkeiten entlassen. Ein entscheidender Beweiswert kommt in dieser Streitsache naturgemäß denjenigen Denkweisen zu, die als genuin neuzeitliche behauptet werden können. Über die Varianten der gegengöttlichen Selbstvergöttlichung des Menschen hinaus führt Blumenberg ein anderes Denken an, das größere Ansprüche auf Eigenständigkeit erheben darf: Der Fortschritt des Denkens am Beginn der Neuzeit beruht wesentlich darauf, daß man begann, über die Unordnung Aussagen zu machen und ihr ohne das Eingreifen eines transzendenten Faktors eine Gesetzlichkeit der Selbstregulation zuzuschreiben.1 Sich selbst zu erkennen, das heißt für den neuzeitlichen Menschen ganz wesentlich, Einsicht zu nehmen in die geschlossenen Systeme der Selbstregulation, die die Natur bereit hält, auf dass er sich daran heuristisch und gesellschaftlich bilden kann. Begonnen hat die Herausbildung des Konzepts der Regulation nach Georges Canguilhem im frühen achtzehnten Jahrhundert. Einer ihrer Anfänge ist die Auseinandersetzung um die Reguliertheit des Kosmos, die Leibniz mit den Anhängern Newtons führte.2 Leibniz hatte im Schriftwechsel mit Clarke das Bild einer Welt verteidigt, die von Anbeginn vollständig reguliert ist. Dafür stand die mechanizistische Metapher eines vollkommenen Uhrwerks, das, einmal aufgezogen, sich unaufhörlich nach unabänderlichen Gesetzen bewegt: Wie der Uhrmacher sein Werk, so habe Gott am Anfang aller Dinge den Weltenlauf für alle Zeit aufs Beste eingerichtet. Diese Vorstellung einer prästabilierten Harmonie, der im Bereich der Mechanik der Satz von der universellen Erhaltung der Energie entsprach, war durch Newtons Vorstellung eines offenen Universums, in dem durch schöpferische Kräfte Neues bewirkt werden kann, in Frage gestellt worden. Im horologischen Bildfeld konnte Leibniz dieser Kosmologie eine Herabsetzung des göttlichen Uhrmachers vorwerfen.3 Tatsächlich aber sollte seine eigene Vorstellung der Welt als eines vollkommenen Mechanismus, der ohne Eingriffe einer transzendenten Instanz in regelmäßiger Bewegung bleibt, eine atheistische Wissenschaft ermöglichen. Auf Napoleons Frage, welche Rolle Gott in seinem Weltsystem spiele, konnte Laplace ein Jahrhundert später antworten: „Sire, je n’ai pas eu besoin de cette hypothèse“.4 In den unterschiedlichsten Bereichen hatte man gelernt, die Erhaltung oder Wiederherstellung von physiologischen wie politischen, mechanischen wie ökonomischen Gleichgewichtszuständen ohne Bezug auf eine den jeweiligen Funktionszusammenhang transzendierende Instanz zu beschreiben. Über solche Zustandserhaltung hinaus konnte an Organismen oder Mechanismen, die sich durch innere Prozesse selbst stabilisieren, eine dynamische Anpassung an die Kontingenzen einer veränderlichen Umwelt beobachtet werden. Freilich ist der Gedanke der Selbstregulation nicht nur durch die Kosmo-Theologie selbst geprägt worden, sondern auch durch die technischen Artefakte, die ihr als Modell gedient haben. Eindrucksvoll war Selbstregulation im Bereich des Apparativen durch James Watt realisiert worden. Nachdem Leibniz die Welt nur als Uhrwerk vorstellen konnte, stand seit 1788 ein Fliehkraftregler auch für epistemische Zwecke zur Verfügung: Selbsttätig, ohne Eingriffe von außen, konnte der governor die Drehzahl der Boulton-Watt’schen Dampfmaschine konstant halten, die als staunenerregende Sensation europaweite Verbreitung fand. Dass dieser bestimmte Apparat für Selbstregulation überhaupt emblematisch geworden ist, verdankt sich über seine Modellfunktion für unterschiedliche Erkenntnisgegenstände hinaus5 einer 1868 mit Maxwells Artikel „On Governors“6 anhebenden Formalisierung der in ihm realisierten Denkweise. Daran anschließend konnte Norbert Wiener 1948 unter dem Titel „Cybernetics“7 eine Wissenschaft von Prozessen der Regelung und Nachrichtenübertragung im Lebewesen und in der Maschine...
 
MLN 118.3 (2003) 670-687 As a direct effect of the omnipresence of the new media, attention has become a central focus of interest. Since the spectrum of visual stimuli and entertainment has become so broad, curiosity, pleasure and admiration are no longer regarded as virtues and passions to be stimulated and satisfied. The problem is rather how to acquire and manage more and more information in shorter and shorter periods of time. In this situation, attention is so precious and expensive, because it cannot be increased at one's discretion and it is a target for anyone who wants to "sell" goods, ideas, knowledge, or ideology. Authors such as Georg Franck speak of an "economy of attention" and regard it as a currency that makes it necessary to decide how to invest one's own attention and how to evoke the attention of others. Consequently Franck argues for a new "ethics of attention." The length of TV-spots has regulated our visual attention; the permanent threat of cell-phones has affected our capacity for concentration in various social situations; and the use of computers inevitably trains us to bring our own attention and speed of response into correspondence with the commands and functions of the machine. Attention today is inseparably linked to the conditions of information technology and media that surround us. However, attention is not an epiphenomenon of these media and technologies. In his comprehensive history of attention in modernity, Jonathan Crary argues that current patterns and mechanisms of attention are to be understood as a consequence of modern transformations of perception and of attention in the nineteenth century. According to Crary, the goal was either to control the observer's subjective experience (e.g. with the tachistoscope and reaction time experiments), or to use attention as a dynamic system in order to enhance the capitalist world of goods, spectacle and consumption. While Crary's analysis of this historical oscillation of attention between free-flow and control, (self)-disciplinary technologies and distraction is comprehensive and persuasive, he is silent about the history of attention in the first half of the nineteenth century. Assuming a radical rupture and discontinuity in the 1870s, Crary is remarkably inattentive to the importance of the practical construction of attention in the years around 1800 for the philosophical and cultural status of subjectivity in modern societies. As I want to argue in this essay, attention was displayed, defined and redefined in a historical situation, when self-experience, self-observation and self-experiment became important tools for the self-understanding of a remarkable number of academics, scholars, scientists, intellectuals, and artists. Scientific experiences with the own self, interest in pathological phenomena, observation and even evocation of physical and mental boundary states were part and parcel of this process. Attention was an object of these scientific experiences, but at the same time it was also used for calibrating and interpreting them. Attention filled the gap between the sometimes odd experiences and and their philosophical implications. I want to build my argument on two historical examples, namely on late eighteenth-century experiential psychology ("Erfahrungsseelenkunde"), and on mid nineteenth-century psychophysics. These two events are not only accepted as major contributions to the history of psychology; more recent literature has also pointed to the crucial role of at least experiential psychology and psychiatry in the constitution of the modern bourgeois self. In trying to push these constraints further, I want to argue that changing experiences, definitions and classifications of attention were core elements of this process. Any approach to a history of attention has first of all to be aware of the various meanings of attention, circulating even at one and the same time. A glance at the "Historical Dictionary of Philosophy" suffices to bring the range of meanings applied to this term up to date. The author of the dictionary first differentiates between a motor-skills oriented, or physical, and an intellectual concept of attention, and then goes further to differentiate between attention as a virtue, as a process of perception, and as a voluntary act. Nearly all aspects of the concept of attention are found in this list—the aspect of...
 
Includes bibliographical references. College of Arts & Science Department of Spanish and Portuguese
 
MLN 111.3 (1996) 441-462 When I was invited to write this essay and submit it for this issue, I was both surprised and flattered. I had no idea, at the time, that I had anything to say about language. But the editor insisted I had, and so I looked back at older work and found he was right. I had, indeed, written quite a lot in this area. With my memory jolted, I rethought my research threads for a research seminar at the University of Portsmouth and came to the surprising conclusion that representation and communication were central themes. (This should not have surprised me, for I had just rediscovered that my old work was deeply imbedded in these concerns.) Writing this essay, then, seemed a natural development, and I was glad of the opportunity to refocus my concerns. Yet I am no linguist, and do not pretend to be one, nor am I concerned with literary criticism. I know only what a layman might know, and not a very well-informed layman at that. So it is with some trepidation that I present this work. However, I am (again) fortified by the editor. He told me my job was to write about cybernetics (systems theory) and language, and that the job of finding it useful, of making the connections, was to be left to the (informed) reader. With that rider (and excuse!) in mind, I venture to present this essay. It may be that this essay is misnamed. To a linguist, it may not be about language at all, I leave that to the reader to decide. What it is about is that most cybernetic of matters: how it might be that we may communicate. It assumes that we do, that our experience is to be trusted, and it sets out a scheme in which communication is possible (based on certain presumptions), then pursues various consequences of this model. If this has a validity that linguists and critics recognize, so much the better. The purpose of this essay, then, is, using cybernetics, to build an account of a means for communication to take place, without coding and without the need for meanings to be in the utterances of representation. It is taken as given that meaning does not lie in utterances, pictures, behaviour, or any other such devices of communication, or in representation or the units of representation (whatever they may be, but including behaviours), or even in objects or entities (and behaviours), but is constructed by each individual involved in an act of communication. In this, the insight of de Saussure is seen as fundamental. Thus, in acts of communication, it is not the meanings that are communicated: meanings are not transferred, translated, or encoded (the usual means ascribed to the transference of meanings). The act of communication, nevertheless, is assumed to have constituents which may usefully be named here. These are: The representer establishes, in the (sometimes virtual) presence of the representee, the relationship (or temporary equality/identity) between the represented and the representing that somehow captures the meaning he has in mind, such that the representee, being faced with the represented and the representing, may construct his own meaning from the representation (the pair represented/representing.) The roles representer and representee are, of course, relative: they switch. Thus, if there is to be communication between A and B, and A is representer at first to representee B, then, naturally enough, when B replies, B is the representer to representee A. Equally, represented and representing are roles: there is no reason why they should not change. While we often use a word (representing) to refer to an object (represented), when we do not know the meaning of a word we will often use some object, for instance, to help us create our own meanings (e.g., ostensive definition). The word "tree" may be explained (represented) by the object tree just as well as the object tree may be explained (represented) by the word "tree." Meanings lie with the representer...
 
MLN 120.5 (2005) 1168-1191 On April 6, 1922, Henri Bergson and Albert Einstein met at the Société française de philosophie in Paris to discuss the meaning of relativity. In the years that followed, the philosopher and the physicist became engaged in a bitter dispute. It is commonly asserted that during their confrontation Bergson lost to the young physicist; as subsequent commentators have insisted, Bergson made an essential mistake because he did not understand the physics of relativity. Their debate exemplified the victory of "rationality" against "intuition." It was a key moment which demonstrated that intellectuals (like Bergson) were unable to keep up with revolutions in science. For the physicists Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont, the "historical origins" of the "Science Wars" lay in Einstein's and Bergson's fateful meeting. Since then, they have seen the malaise of le bergsonisme continuing to spread—recently reaching "Deleuze, after passing through Jankélévitch and Merleau-Ponty." Bergson, however, never acknowledged any such defeat. In his view, it was Einstein and his interlocutors who did not understand him. He attempted to clarify his views in no less than three appendices to his famous book Durée et Simultanéité, in a separate article "Les temps fictifs et les temps réel" (May 1924), and in a long footnote to La Pensée et le mouvant (1934). Despite these attempts, many of his previous followers abandoned him. Gaston Bachelard, for example, referred to him as the philosopher who had lost against Einstein. But others, like Maurice Merleau-Ponty, persisted in defending him. This small group resigned themselves to being categorized by Einstein's defenders as retrograde, irrational, and ignorant. Among the most important thinkers who have since followed this debate we can list: Gaston Bachelard, Léon Brunschvicg, Gilles Deleuze, Emile Meyerson, Martin Heidegger, Jacques Maritain, Karl Popper, Bertrand Russell, Paul Valéry, and Alfred North Whitehead. In what follows I will give an account of the Einstein-Bergson debate about science by paying particular attention to its effect on a political debate that occurred at the same time. The context involves an institution founded on the hope that if intellectuals could learn to cooperate then nations might follow: the International Commission for Intellectual Cooperation (CIC) of the League of Nations, a forerunner of UNESCO. Disagreements between Bergson and Einstein plagued the Commission until it was informally dissolved in 1939, in the face of a second world war. The political views of Bergson and Einstein and the history of scientific internationalism have been amply studied before. Yet the scientific Bergson-Einstein debate and the political Bergson-Einstein debate, taking place simultaneously, have been considered to be independent from each other. It is evident, however, that both Bergson and Einstein (as well as those around them) often drew connections between the two. This article explores these connections symmetrically to expose the ways in which boundaries between nature, science, and politics shifted during this period. It is pertinent to study these shifts first to understand the ancillary debates in science and politics that have thus far dominated historiography. This episode marks an important change in the place of science and philosophy in history. Einstein and Bergson's debate covered much more than the nature of time and simultaneity. At stake in their debate was the status of philosophy vis à vis physics. It was, in essence, a controversy about who could speak for nature and about which of these two disciplines would have the last word. At the time of their debate, Einstein was a growing star in science. Arthur Eddington's 1919 eclipse expedition had brought him international fame. Partly because of his vocal pacifist and anti-nationalist stance, Einstein was the one German-born scientist to whom many members of the international community gladly turned. He received the Nobel Prize in Physics for 1921...
 
Bibliogr. na konci kapitol
 
Parisi, Luciano. Borgese e Manzoni. Modern Language Notes. 112:1 (1997), pp. 38-56. © The Johns Hopkins University Press. Reprinted with permission of The Johns Hopkins University Press.
 
Parisi, Luciano. Moravia e la borghesia: le ragioni di un equivoco. Modern Language Notes. 123:1 (2008), pp. 77-95. © The Johns Hopkins University Press. Reprinted with permission of The Johns Hopkins University Press. I question a wide-spread assumption (Moravia as a critic of the bourgeoisie) by asking: What social class does Moravia actually criticize in his work? Is his criticism convincing? If it is not, and if it does not meet the objective set out, what are the reasons for this shortcoming? My answers are: the class criticized is made up of government officials, bureaucrats, and people who have inherited their wealth; the criticism is unconvincing also because it is one-sided; the shortcoming depends on a lack of artistic concern for this topic. Exposing its mistaken relevance encourages new interpretations of Moravia's work.
 
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Johns Hopkins University, 1964. Typescript (carbon copy). Vita. "Bibliografia della critica": l. 294-312.
 
Vanderbilt University. College of Arts and Science Vanderbilt University. Dept. of French and Italian
 
A pioneer in the field, Christian Metz applies insights of structural linguistics to the language of film. "The semiology of film . . . can be held to date from the publication in 1964 of the famous essay by Christian Metz, 'Le cinéma: langue ou langage?'"—Geoffrey Nowell-Smith, Times Literary Supplement "Modern film theory begins with Metz."—Constance Penley, coeditor of Camera Obscura "Any consideration of semiology in relation to the particular field signifying practice of film passes inevitably through a reference to the work of Christian Metz. . . . The first book to be written in this field, [Film Language] is important not merely because of this primacy but also because of the issues it raises . . . issues that have become crucial to the contemporary argument."—Stephen Heath, Screen
 
A cognitive network is a type of semantic model developed for simulating natural language on digital computers. A concept is a node in the network while connections between nodes represent relations between concepts. One generates a text by tracing a path through the network and rendering the successive concepts and relations into language according to the appropriate conventions. Elementary concepts are grounded in sensor-motor schemas while abstract concepts are grounded in patterns of network relationship. The semantic structure for Shakespeare's "Th' expense of spirit" (Sonnet 129) is given by an abstract pattern for the Fortunate Fall, which is linked to a pattern specifying a fragment of the conceptual basis for faculty psychology.
 
Naturalmente, quando si va a visitare un paese nuovo, si hanno già dei progetti d'interpretazione. E ogni scoperta è una lotta contro questi progetti, che piano piano cadono, e vengono sostituiti da altri, quelli reali. Perciò scoprire è sempre molto faticoso, in qualche modo disgustoso. In December 1960, joined by Alberto Moravia and later by Elsa Morante, Pier Paolo Pasolini left for India. The pretext was an international conference on the Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore in Bombay, but the three writers took the time to visit other Indian sites: New Delhi, Agra, Benares, Calcutta, Tanjore and Cochin. On their way back to Europe, they stopped in Kenya and Zanzibar for several days. Pasolini recorded his impressions in articles written weekly for Il Giorno (published between February 26 and March 26, 1961), later the same year gathered in a book, L'odore dell'India (Milano: Longanesi, 1961). Moravia, too, wrote several chronicles of India, published in the Corriere della sera (beginning February 19, 1961), and then gathered in Un'idea dell'India in 1962.2 In this essay I examine Pasolini's first trip to India through the written traces he left of it in his published travelogue. I analyze L'odore dell'India in the light of Pasolini's growing interest in the "Third World." This journey, as it has been pointed out, represented his first venture into non-Western countries, and indeed it was not by chance that his stay in India was coupled with a short visit to other "underdeveloped" countries with which he would become more familiar in the following years.3 There is a widespread agreement among Pasolini scholars on the "toni espressionistici—per non dire semplicistici" (Caminati 60) of L'odore dell'India, and, for many, of his entire tiermondiste production: Sam Rohdie, conflating Pasolini's experiences of the developing world in one gesture, writes that "Pasolini knew Africa, India, the Middle East, Calabria, the Rome borgate only poetically, not actually" (96) and argues that Pasolini was "fundamentally uninterested" in the Third World (252). Massimo Riva, in his analysis of Il padre selvaggio, the "neo-colonial" script written immediately after L'odore dell'India in 1962, describes this text in words that apply to L'odore as well: "Il testo di Pasolini si accende di toni e tonalità (stilemi) che, se non se ne sottolineasse l'ingenuità provocatoria, il calcolato candore, sarebbero forse (e sono) imbarazzanti, dal punto di vista di un'analisi in chiave 'postcoloniale'" (253). Specifically concerning L'odore dell'India, Patrick Rumble writes that Pasolini's representation of India is a "self-subverting, non-positive figuration of difference" (199), and Chris Bongie deems it a "banal piece of journalism" (242, n. 23).4 Conversely, attention has also been given to the cracks and changes occurring in Pasolini's tiersmondisme between 1961 and 1975: Alessia Ricciardi outlines the ideological "dissonanza controllata" (already identified by Robert Gordon in Pasolini's cinema at large) that constitutes the internal, formal critique in Appunti per un'Orestiade africana (1968). She also contrasts the ideological failure ("esotismo regressivo") of such works to that of the stage drama Pilade, which is "molto più maturo da un punto di vista critico-ideologico" (514). Sergio Parussa, in an article co-written with Massimo Riva, outlines the illuminating reflections on (and the pessimism about) the encounter between cultures elaborated by Pasolini in several fragments of Petrolio. Additionally, in his recent excellent analysis of Pasolini's Third World cinema, Luca Caminati has contrasted L'odore dell'India, in which "l'Oriente" is "combattuto da subito e mai completamente accettato" (23), with Pasolini's later work Appunti per un film sull'India (1968), in which the critic finds a "rinnovata tensione verso il reale" (59); that is, an effective commitment to "know" the other.5 A full consideration of all these encounters is beyond the scope of this essay: my aim is to problematize the understanding of L'odore dell'India by explaining its defensive techniques and by outlining its ideological dissonances. I begin by interrogating the literary status of a text often dismissed as a journalistic piece in order to argue that L'odore dell'India is the...
 
Parisi, Luciano. Il tema della Provvidenza in Manzoni. Modern Language Notes. 114:1 (1999), pp. 83-105. © The Johns Hopkins University Press. Reprinted with permission of The Johns Hopkins University Press.
 
Thesis--Columbia University. Copyright statement added: 1968. Bibliography, leaves 241-247. Microfilm.
 
Typescript (duplicated). Subsequently published: Banbury : Voltaire Foundation, 1973. (Studies on Voltaire and the eighteenth century ; 104). Thesis (Ph. D.)--Yale University, 1970. Bibliography: leaves [312]-318.
 
Auch im Buchh. als: Acta Universitatis Stockholmiensis. Stockholmer germanistische Forschungen. 4 Zugl.: Stockholm, Humanistische F., Diss.
 
Typescript. Thesis (Ph. D.)--Stanford University, 1983. Includes bibliographical references (leaves 221-241).
 
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Johns Hopkins University, 1981. Vita. Bibliography: leaves 257-261. Microfilm.
 
Thesis (Ph. D.)--State University of New York at Buffalo, 1972. Includes bibliographical references (leaves 291-301). C.1. Typescript.
 
"An exciting, entertaining exploration of films. . . . [Braudy] attempts to understand rather than promulgate rules and categories, and somehow to keep the criteria of enjoyment in some meaningful connection with the criteria of judgment."—Robert Kirsch, Los Angeles Times
 
Parisi, Luciano. Manzoni, il Seicento francese e il giansenismo. Modern Language Notes. 118:1 (2003), pp. 85-115. © The Johns Hopkins University Press. Reprinted with permission of The Johns Hopkins University Press. This article focusses on Alessandro Manzoni's interest for the French Catholic authors of the late 17th century (Bossuet, Bourdaloue, Massillon, Nicole, and Pascal). Some of these writers were Jansenists. The long debate on whether Manzoni was influenced by Jansenism or not has been weakened by the different, sometimes opposite, and often inappropriate definitions of Jansenism that some scholars gave, and other took for granted. This article re-examines these definitions closely. It concludes that Jansenism, as a set of doctrinal and political ideas, did not play a significant role in Manzoni. Jansenism as a word, moreover, became a misleading abstraction in Manzonian studies, and should be avoided when possible.
 
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