Myths of the Self: Narrative Identity and Postmodern Metaphysics

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9780739108437: Myths of the Self: Narrative Identity and Postmodern Metaphysics

According to Olav Bryant Smith, Kant's "critical philosophy," precisely his defense of necessary knowledge, inadvertantly opened the door to discussions of interpretive philosophy and ultimately postmodernity. This unique opening to a discussion of postmodern thought framesMyths of the Self: Narrative Identity and Postmodern Metaphysics. Author Olav Smith uses process philosophy, specifically the constructive postmodern metaphysics of Alfred North Whitehead, to move away from the skepticism of modernity. This maneuver, along with an invigorating discussion of not often paired philosophers: Kant, Heidegger, Whitehead, and Ricoeur, leads readers into a discussion of the self that is a synthesis of a narrative theory of identity and a constructive "postmodern" metaphysics. Smith's original approach to Kant'sCritique of Reason, his unique pairing of Heidegger and Whitehead as well as Whitehead and Ricoeur makes this book essential reading for philisophers working in the Continental and especially the Analytic American tradition.

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About the Author:

Olav Bryant Smith is Lecturer at California State University, Chico.

Review:

I believe that Myths of the Self is an important work that could make an important contribution to the current discussion in many respects. Perhaps most novel is Bryant's interpretation of Kant. It has the potential to move Kant studies out of their dogmatic slumbers. (David Griffin, Professor of Philosophy of Religion and Theology; Professor of Religion, Claremont Graduate University)

Smith's exciting retrieval of Whitehead and Ricouer out of the Kantian background gives new relevance to the mythic component of our "construction" of self. Not to be missed. (Bruce Wilshire, Senior Professor of Philosophy, Rutgers University)

This intriguing journey across the landscape of modern philosophy builds a pervasive case for seeing Whitehead's metaphysics as providing the theoretical resources for understanding human lives in the narrative terms of everyday experience. It thereby provides a distinctive vantage point for combining the key insights of some major twentieth century philosophers in a way that mediates between important trends in Continental and Anglo-American thought. (Nicholas Rescher)

Smith's theory of the nature and identity of the self is original, important, and beautifully grounded in the history of philosophy. His nuanced interpretation, critique, and development of relevant ideas in Kant, Heidegger, Whitehead, and Ricoeur lays the foundation for an impressive synthesis of metaphysical and phenomenological ontologies in terms of which self and nature are both understood as essentially involving creative processes of interpretation and expression. (Jorge L. Nobo, Professor of Philosophy, Washburn University)

It is remarkable how comparatively little intradisciplinary discourse occurs among practitioners in the various fields in philosophy. Olav Bryant Smith is an exception. He brings together two groups that should have much in common: process thinkers (in both philosophy and religious studies) and continental thinkers. He argues convincingly that Kant, the quintessential modern thinker, is also in a way the father of postmodernism. He also shows how Heidegger's phenomenological genius left him a bit short when it came to ontology. Further, Smith is to be thanked for bringing together in a clear and insightful way two thinkers who make real philosophical advances over Kant and Heidegger: Alfred North Whitehead and Paul Ricoeur. Whithead's ontology and Ricoeur's narrative theory need each other, Smith argues. The result is a thought-provoking and readable theory of the postmodern self that is indeed constructive. (Daniel A. Dombrowski, Seattle University)

This is a very intelligent and engaging essay in constructive postmodern metaphysics. Olav Smith brings Whitehead into provocative and fruitful dialogue with the philosophies of Kant, Heidegger, and Ricoeur. The diverse discussions are marked by many illuminating and surprising connections. (William Desmond, David Cook Chair in Philosophy, Villanova University, USA)

Through careful, informed examination of Kant, Heidegger, Whitehead and Ricoeur, Olav Smith dissects myths, understood as narratives about the self, in relating narrative identity and postmodern metaphysics. Smith makes an intelligent, original and certainly intriguing contribution to the task of rethinking the self against the background of an ontology based on modern science. (Tom Rockmore, Duquesne University)

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Book Description Lexington Books, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. Myths of the Self is a departure from the standard fare of postmodern thought. In a unique and brilliant turn, Smith argues that the best way of dealing with the topic of the self is a synthesis of a narrative theory of identity, using Ricoeur as a source, along with the constructive postmodern metaphysics of Alfred North Whitehead. The resulting synthesis is a new and potentially invigorating spin on the genesis of postmodern thought. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780739108437

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Book Description Lexington Books, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. Myths of the Self is a departure from the standard fare of postmodern thought. In a unique and brilliant turn, Smith argues that the best way of dealing with the topic of the self is a synthesis of a narrative theory of identity, using Ricoeur as a source, along with the constructive postmodern metaphysics of Alfred North Whitehead. The resulting synthesis is a new and potentially invigorating spin on the genesis of postmodern thought. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780739108437

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Book Description Lexington Books. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 176 pages. Dimensions: 8.9in. x 6.0in. x 0.9in.According to Olav Bryant Smith, Kants critical philosophy, precisely his defense of necessary knowledge, inadvertantly opened the door to discussions of interpretive philosophy and ultimately postmodernity. This unique opening to a discussion of postmodern thought framesMyths of the Self: Narrative Identity and Postmodern Metaphysics. Author Olav Smith uses process philosophy, specifically the constructive postmodern metaphysics of Alfred North Whitehead, to move away from the skepticism of modernity. This maneuver, along with an invigorating discussion of not often paired philosophers: Kant, Heidegger, Whitehead, and Ricoeur, leads readers into a discussion of the self that is a synthesis of a narrative theory of identity and a constructive postmodern metaphysics. Smiths original approach to KantsCritique of Reason, his unique pairing of Heidegger and Whitehead as well as Whitehead and Ricoeur makes this book essential reading for philisophers working in the Continental and especially the Analytic American tradition. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Hardcover. Bookseller Inventory # 9780739108437

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