Seminar: The Greeks and Modernity, hosted by Michael McGettigan, ABD
Reading recommendation: Review! This is a seminar after all! I sense that the complex strands of Schmitt’s argument are unraveling in our common understanding, so before we proceed to Plato and Aristotle, we must remember (anamnesis!) and make what is absent (past readings) present to the new reading that is coming.
So let’s talk about the following pages as a way to rehearse Schmitt’s epistemological critique of perception as basis and object of knowledge:
Pp. 20-22, 23 bottom-25 top, 28 bottom-32 top, 38 bottom-40 top, 40 bottom-50, 52-57.
I want YOU all to lead this review, so be ready to explain to the best of your ability some or all of these passages. We will focus on getting Schmitt’s point so whether you agree or disagree will take a back seat for a while.
A satisfying outcome will be a general understanding that no empirical statement whatsoever has any relevance to what we are doing, either as confirmation or as disconfirmation of Schmitt’s level of thought.
If you want out of the cave you will have to lose your attachment to shadows.
For a copy of the reading or if you have questions, please email Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This group will explore the relation to Greek thought and the modern era by looking at texts that view Greek thought as a corrective to the ills of modernity, as well as texts that view modernity as representing true progress over Greek thought. We will first look more closely at Greek thought to distinguish it from popular and widespread misconceptions, thereby comprehending why philosophy exists and what it is supposed to be. Afterwards we will look at authors such as Nietzsche, Heidegger, Foucault, Auerbach, Arendt, Strauss, Macintyre and others whose diagnosis of modernity’s shortcomings and virtues are nourished by their respective return to Greek origins.