Browse Items (45 total)

  • Collection: Curated Research
  • Tags: Disciplines

Nature: Course Notes from the College de France

Merleau-Ponty, one of the greatest 20th Century thinkers of perception, the body, and its operation in the natural world, gives a course on the history of nature and its relationship with human freedom and thinking. These are notes on the course…

LaMettrie's L'Homme Machine

Vartanian establishes the authoritative French text of La Mettrie's L'Homme Machine, and several essays on its background, claims, its materialism, and its place in 18th Century science.

Linnaeus, Natural History, and the Circulation of Knowledge

Contributors examine the various techniques, materials and methods that originated within the ‘Linnaean workshop’: paper technologies, publication strategies, and markets for specimens. Fresh analyses of the reception of Linnaeus’s work in…

Critical Theory: Essays

Collection of Horkhiemer's early essays that define the program of critical theory. Includes seminal essays such as "Traditional and Critical Theory" and "The Latests Attacks on Metaphysics," providing background and context for many of the wartime…

Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments

A landmark text critiquing the universalizing project of the European enlightenment. It argues the so-called promises of the intellectual movement remain unfulfilled, as does the forward-moving, developmental picture of history as a progressive…

Enlightenment and Pathology

Vila's study is now a classic, not only for its revealing interdisciplinary treatment of sensibility but also for its precise methodology and the clarity of its prose.

The Great Cat Massacre

Translated into 18 languages to date, this work is delightful read and also gets one thinking about the many ways in which we impose our own cultural assumptions, inaccurately, on previous eras; very useful as a pedagogical tool to get students out…

“Liberté, Égalité, Sororité: The Regime of the Sister in Graffigny's Lettres
d'une Péruvienne.”

Discusses 18th-century author Françoise de Graffigny's important novel (Lettres d'une Péruvienne), focusing on the form of the letters in the novel, which are constructed first in quipos (a peruvian form of communication involving knotted cords),…

Man and Society in Calamity: the Effects of War, Revolution, Famine, and Pestilence upon the Human Mind, Behavior, Social Organization, and Cultural Life

This is a new edition of a book published originally in 1942 by one of the founders of American sociology, Pitrim Sorokin. At the time the book fell under the radar and it remains little known today, but it is a pioneering work in many ways,…

Gothic Fiction and the Invention of Terrorism: the Politics and Aesthetics of Fear in the Age of the Reign of Terror

Crawford offers a new take on the rise of the Gothic in the late 18th century. Most interpretations see the gothic as a reaction to the upheavals of the revolutionary era. The new realities created by Revolution, so the argument goes, gave rise to…

Death and the Maiden

A play written by the Argentine-Chilean playwrite and activist, Ariel Dorfman. It tells the story of a woman confronting the man who allegedly took part in her torture under the previous, dictatorial regime. The woman's husband is a magistrate who is…

Alimut Elohit: Shnei Hiburim al Elohim ve Asson[Divine Violence: Two Essays on God and Disaster]

Ophir, an Israeli philosopher, examines the connection between God and disasters. From the bible and through much of western history, disasters were seen as caused in some manner by God's will. Ophir examines this tendency and argues that in the…

“The Past is Evil/Evil is Past: On Retrospective Politics, Philosophy of History, and Temporal Manichaeism,”

Bevernage turns to the Enlightenment in order to explain why so much of contemporary politics is focused on rectifying past wrongs. He argues that the 18th century saw the emergence of a modern philosophy of history, which identified the past with…

Between Vengeance and Forgiveness: Facing History after Genocide and Mass Violence

"A fractured meditation on the incompleteness and inadequacy of each possible response to collective atrocities," is how the author of this work describes what she has written, and it is an apt description. It is a beautiful book, written by a…

The Guillotine and the Terror

A very original if somewhat disturbing book on the imaginary of the French Revolution. Arasse, a historian of art, discusses the stories that were created about and around the guillotine. He shows how the machine was invested with the values and…

Machine and Organism

Canguilhem inverts the normal scientific question--what is the mechanism underlying this organic process?--and asks how machines are organic. He traces the history of the relationships between organism and machine from the ancient Greek political…

The Paradox of the Automaton: From Diderot to Cybernetics

A concise and provocative history of the idea of automata from Diderot to the present. She argues that the automaton is the cornerstone of modern knowledge and its powers.

Man a Machine

Julien Offray de La Mettrie was one of the earliest French Enlightenment materialists. Exiled from France after publishing a book (A Natural History of the Soul) arguing that psychical phenomena could be explained by examining bodily processes, he…

Selected Philosophical and Scientific Writings

Brings together a collection of Du Châtelet's writing and shows that she was much more than Voltaire's mistress; she was a philosophe in her own right. This volume not only provides a good introduction to Du Châtelet but shows how ambitious…

Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier (1743-1794) and His Wife (Marie Anne Pierrette Paulze, 1758-1836)

Reveals the gendered division of labor in many scientific households. Antoine, seated, is at work on a chemistry treatise; his wife, Marie-Anne, takes a break from her drawing board to look over his shoulder. Whereas Antoine is famous for his…