Originality is Not the Point: Charles Taylor’s Views on Environment/External Reality (Malaise 5-Audio)

Inspired by Charles Taylor’s Malaise of Modernity, Chapter 8, I discuss Taylor’s points about whether rejection of all authority and previous cultural accretions in the name of authenticity is necessary or whether it entirely misses the point. Is it even possible to be “original?” If we think that it is, are we not susceptible to the worst suggestions for how to achieve our “originality” or authenticity, whether those suggestions come from unscrupulous leaders or purveyors of commercial products?. Taylor’s analysis of how this problem plays out in our relationship to the environment is especially interesting. We treat it as though it is an extension of ourselves to be molded and shaped any way we want, and yet it won’t completely comply–because it is not an extension of ourselves but an actual external reality with (recalling Jakob Hanschu’s treatment of New Materialism and his development of Dark Materialism) its own uncontrollable ramifications?

Hanschu’s thesis on Dark Materialism: https://theoreticalcapriccio.wordpress.com/2020/10/23/dark-materialism-notes-on-a-critical-politics-for-the-new-materialisms/



iTunes podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/political-philosophy-dr-laurie-m-johnson/id1473457784

Here’s the URL to the Political Philosophy Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/608141959786172/about/

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