After discussing the broad range of possible “modes of cross-cultural encounter” in a historical perspective, the book develops as a preferred option the notion of a deconstructive dialogue or a “hermeneutics of difference” which respects otherness beyond assimilation. This hermeneutics is illustrated in chapters examining several bridge-builders between cultures, primarily the Indian philosophers Radhakrishnan and J. L. Mehta and the Indologist Halbfass. The remaining chapters are devoted to more concrete social-political problems, including issues of modernization, multiculturalism, and the prospects of a globalized democracy which bids farewell to Orientalism and Eurocentrism.
Civilizations and World Order: Geopolitics and Cultural Difference examines the role of civilizations in the context of the existing and possible world order(s) from a cross-cultural and inter-disciplinary perspective. Contributions seek to clarify the meaning of such complex and contested notions as “civilization,” “order,” and “world order”; they do so by taking into account political, economic, cultural, and philosophical dimensions of social life. The book deals with its main theme from three angles or vectors: first, the geopolitical or power-political context of civilizations; secondly, the different roles of civilizations or cultures against the backdrop of “post-coloniality” and “Orientalism”; and thirdly, the importance of ideological and regional differences as factors supporting or obstructing world order(s). All in all, the different contributions demonstrate the impact of competing civilizational trajectories on the functioning or malfunctioning of contemporary world order.
In Freedom and Solidarity, noted political theorist and humanist Fred Dallmayr seeks to bridge the gap between the self and the outside world. Drawing on new scholarship and his work with the World Public Forum Dialogue of Civilizations, a global, nongovernmental organization of distinguished thinkers, he challenges dominant worldviews and heralds new possibilities for political thought and practice. Dallmayr argues that while we need not reject all the values of modernity, it is imperative that we resist the simplifications inherent in dualism and fundamentally reassess the notions of freedom and solidarity.
Engaging a breathtaking array of influential thinkers, including Friedrich Nietzsche, Martin Heidegger, Henry David Thoreau, Gandhi, Albert Camus, John Dewey, and Dimitry Likhachev, Dallmayr explores the possibility of a transition from the modern paradigm -- a mode of life presently in decay -- toward a new beginning in which freedom and solidarity can be reconciled, making it possible for humanity to flourish on a global scale.
In Being in the World, noted political theorist Fred Dallmayr explores the globe's transition from the traditional Westphalian system of states to today's interlocking cosmopolitan network. Drawing upon sacred scriptures as well as the work of ancient philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle and more recent scholars such as Martin Heidegger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, and Raimon Panikkar, this book delves into what Dallmayr calls "being in the world," seen as an aspect of ethical-political engagement. Rather than lamenting current problems, he suggests addressing them through civic education and cosmopolitan citizenship. Dallmayr advocates a politics of the common good, which requires the cultivation of public ethics, open dialogue, and civic responsibility.
In Contemporary Chinese Political Thought: Debates and Perspectives, Fred Dallmayr and Zhao Tingyang bring together leading Chinese intellectuals to debate the main political ideas shaping the rapidly changing nation. Investigating such topics as the popular "China Model", the resurgence of Chinese Confucianism and its applications to the modern world, and liberal socialism, the contributors move beyond usual analytical frameworks toward what Dallmayr and Zhao call "a dismantling of ideological straitjackets." Comprising a broad range of opinions and perspectives, Contemporary Chinese Political Thought is the most up-to-date examination in English of modern Chinese political attitudes and discourse.
Features contributions from Ji Wenshun, Zhou Lian, Zhao Tingyang, Zhang Feng, Liu Shuxian, Chen Ming, He Baogang, Ni Peimin, Ci Jiwei, Cui Zhiyuan, Frank Fang, Wang Shaoguang, and Cheng Guangyun.
The book is intercultural and also inter-disciplinary. Since the aim is holistic - to hold the world together - the book necessarily has to draw on many disciplines: including philosophy, theology, social science, history, and literature. In terms of Western philosophical and intellectual legacies, it draws mainly on the teachings of Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Derrida. It also offers a completely new interpretation of the work of Thomas Hobbes, unearthing in this work an ethical demand to exit from the state of perpetual warfare in the direction of a shared commonwealth. The text also relies on the teachings of Christian theology (both Catholic and Protestant), invoking at crucial junctures the works of Karl Barth, Raimon Panikkar, and others. In terms of non-Western intellectual and spiritual legacies, the book offers new interpretations of leading texts in the Indian and Chinese traditions. Thus, emphasis is placed on the ideas of "world maintenance" (loka-samgraha) in Hinduism and of "All-Under-Heaven" in classical Chinese thought. Although a central thrust of the text is for a new wholeness, the goal is not a uniform synthesis where everything would be swallowed up in a bland unity. Rather the issue is how to preserve diversity of the world in its rightful integrity, by linking all elements in a complex web of interconnections and "relationality".
Dallmayr critically compares integral pluralism against the theories of Carl Schmitt, the Religious Right, international "realism," and so-called political Islam. Drawing on the works of James, Heidegger, Gadamer, and Merleau-Ponty, Integral Pluralism offers sophisticated and carefully researched solutions for the conflicts of the modern world.
Return to Nature? unites learning, intelligence, sensibility, and moral passion to offer a multifaceted history of philosophy with regard to our place in the natural world. Dallmayr's visionary writings provide an informed foundation for environmental policy and represent an impassioned call to reclaim nature in our everyday lives.
In Search of the Good Life does not offer a blueprint but rather invites readers on a cross-cultural quest. Along the way, the author discusses the teachings of Aristotle, Confucius, Nicolaus of Cusa, Leibniz, and Schiller, in addition invoking more recent writings of Gadamer and Ricoeur, as guideposts and sources of hope during our troubled times. Among contemporary themes Dallmayr discusses are the role of the classics in education, proper and improper ways of spreading democracy globally, the possibility of transnational citizenship, the problem of politicized evil, and the role of religion in our predominantly secular culture.
Dallmayr restores the notion of the good life as a hallmark of personal conduct, civic virtue, and political engagement, and as the road map to enduring peace. In Search of the Good Life seeks to arouse complacent and dispirited citizens, guiding them out of the distractions of shallow amusements and perilous resentments in the direction of mutual learning and civic pedagogy -- a direction that will enable them to impose accountability on political leaders who stray from fundamental ethical standards.