Pub. Date:
Columbia University Press
Zoographies: The Question of the Animal from Heidegger to Derrida

Zoographies: The Question of the Animal from Heidegger to Derrida

by Matthew Calarco
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Zoographies challenges the anthropocentrism of the Continental philosophical tradition and advances the position that, while some distinctions are valid, humans and animals are best viewed as part of an ontological whole. Matthew Calarco draws on ethological and evolutionary evidence and the work of Heidegger, who called for a radicalized responsibility toward all forms of life. He also turns to Levinas, who raised questions about the nature and scope of ethics; Agamben, who held the "anthropological machine" responsible for the horrors of the twentieth century; and Derrida, who initiated a nonanthropocentric ethics. Calarco concludes with a call for the abolition of classical versions of the human-animal distinction and asks that we devise new ways of thinking about and living with animals.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780231140232
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication date: 07/08/2008
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 184
Sales rank: 1,025,836
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Matthew Calarco is assistant professor of philosophy at California State University, Fullerton. His books include On Levinas; Animal Philosophy: Essential Readings in Continental Thought; and The Continental Ethics Reader.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Question of the Animal
1. Metaphysical Anthropocentrism: Heidegger
2. Facing the Other Animal: Levinas
3. Jamming the Anthropological Machine: Agamben
4. The Passion of the Animal: Derrida

What People are Saying About This

Carol J. Adams

A remarkable achievement. Matthew Calarco liberates Continental philosophy from its anthropocentrism and in doing so points both to the importance of Continental philosophy in thinking about animals and in eliminating the human-animal distinction for future philosophical investigations.

Carol J. Adams, author of The Feminist Care Tradition in Animal Ethics: A Reader

Cary Wolfe

Matthew Calarco's Zoographies is that rare breed of book that manages to provide both a critical overview and incisive intervention on the terrain of what is now called 'the question of the animal.' Lucidly written and judiciously argued, this book is required reading for those interested in exploring the most searching and innovative attempts in contemporary thought to confront our moral obligations to nonhuman beings. That confrontation, as Calarco demonstrates, cannot leave the very nature of 'humanity' itself unchanged.

Cary Wolfe, Bruce and Elizabeth Dunlevie Professor of English, Rice University

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