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Becoming Who We ArePolitics and Practical Philosophy in the Work of Stanley Cavell$
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Andrew Norris

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190673949

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190673949.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Becoming Who We Are

Andrew Norris

Oxford University Press

The introduction examines why Cavell’s contribution to our understanding of politics and practical philosophy has not yet received extensive examination in book form and why it merits such examination and such a book. It then briefly reviews Cavell’s unique approach to philosophy in general and to practical philosophy in particular. It concludes by summarizing the five chapters of the book, and their accounts of Cavell’s understanding of, in turn, ordinary language, skepticism, the nature of political claims, Thoreau’s achievement in Walden, and the manner in which what he terms Emersonian perfectionism represents a radical reworking of Kant’s theory of autonomy.

Keywords:   J. L. Austin, autonomy, claim to community, citizenship, democracy, Ralph Waldo Emerson, ordinary language philosophy, perfectionism, skepticism, Ludwig Wittgenstein

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