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An Encyclopedia of Communication Ethics

Goods in Contention

by Ronald C. Arnett (Volume editor) Annette M. Holba (Volume editor) Susan Mancino (Volume editor)
Textbook VIII, 582 Pages

Table Of Content

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author(s)/editor(s)
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Contents
  • Communication Ethics: Goods in Contention (Ronald C. Arnett / Annette M. Holba / Susan Mancino)
  • Notes
  • Chapter 1: Theodor Wiesengrund Adorno: Critical Theory and Ethics (Alain Létourneau)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 2: Kwame Anthony Appiah: Cosmopolitanism (Annette M. Holba)
  • Central Themes
  • Identity
  • Individuality
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 3: Thomas Aquinas: Communication as Virtue (Jeffrey J. Maciejewski)
  • Central Themes
  • Dispositions and Human Capacities
  • Perfection as Virtue
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 4: Hannah Arendt: Story-Laden Action (Ronald C. Arnett)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 5: Aristotle: The Good Life (Kenneth R. Chase)
  • Central Themes
  • Happiness
  • Excellence
  • Character
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 6: Augustine: Forsaking the Lie (Calvin L. Troup)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Chapter 7: Annette Baier: Situated Trust (Deborah Eicher-Catt)
  • Central Themes
  • Communicative Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 8: Mikhail Bakhtin: Mutual Outsidedness (Igor E. Klyukanov / Galina V. Sinekopova)
  • Central Themes
  • Outsidedness
  • “Non-alibi in Being”
  • Answerability
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 9: Simone de Beauvoir: Ambiguity and Ethics (G. L. Ercolini)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 10: Seyla Benhabib: Communicating with the Concrete Other (Johanna Fawkes)
  • Central Themes
  • A Typology of Universalism
  • Claims of Identity
  • Deliberative Democracy and the Public Sphere
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 11: Walter Benjamin: A Performative Communication Ethic (Sarah M. Deiuliis)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 12: Sissela Bok: Truthfulness and Deception (Josina Makau)
  • Central Themes
  • The Principle of Veracity
  • Test of Publicity
  • Self Deception
  • Balancing Resilience with Empathy
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 13: Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Community (Charles E. Thomas Jr.)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 14: Pierre Bourdieu: Fieldwork in Philosophy (Isaac E. Catt)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 15: Martin Buber: Dialogic Ethics (Kenneth N. Cissna / Rob Anderson)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 16: Kenneth Burke: Bodies in Purposeful Motion (Richard H. Thames)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 17: Judith Butler: Giving An Account of Oneself (Lisbeth A. Lipari)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 18: Albert Camus: Absurdity (Brent C. Sleasman)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 19: Noam Chomsky: Otherwise than Convention (Edda Weigand)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 20: Confucius: Harmony, Not Conformity (Guo-Ming Chen)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 21: Dorothy Day: Social Justice (Susan Mancino)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 22: Gilles Deleuze: Philosophical Metaphor (Józef Zaprucki / Susan Mancino)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 23: Jacques Derrida: Hospitality that Haunts (François Cooren)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Chapter 24: René Descartes: Doubt and Ethics (Jeffery L. Bineham)
  • Central Themes
  • The Cartesian Concept of Truth
  • The Cartesian Method
  • Cartesian Foundationalism
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 25: John Dewey: Democratic Sensibility (Lindsay Miller / Omar Swartz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Chapter 26: Wilhelm Dilthey: Artistic Imagination (Algis Mickunas)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Chapter 27: W.E.B. Du Bois: Situated Knowledge in Action (Kaitlyn G. Patia)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 28: John Duns Scotus: Doctor Subtilis (Brian Gilchrist)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 29: Umberto Eco: Ethical Responsibility and Signification (Susan Mancino)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 30: Jacques Ellul: Ontological Realism (Clifford Christians / Calvin L. Troup)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 31: Jean Bethke Elshtain: Accountability and Authority in Communication Ethics (Janie Marie Harden Fritz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 32: Yunus Emre: Conscientious Dissent for Altruism and Love (Cem Zeytinoglu)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 33: Michel Foucault: Truth Telling (Raymie E. Mckerrow)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 34: Paulo Freire: Literacy of Dialogue (Leeanne M. Bell Mcmanus)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 35: Hans-Georg Gadamer: Philosophical Hermeneutics (John Arthos)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 36: Mahatma Gandhi: Ethics, Truth, and Action (Spoma Jovanovic)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 37: Carol Gilligan: Ethic of Care (Deanna D. Sellnow)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 38: Marjorie Grene: Repelling a World without Life (Jessica N. Sturgess)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 39: Jürgen Habermas: Discourse Ethics (Pat Gehrke)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 40: Thich Nhat Hanh: Mindfulness (Ozum Ucok-Sayrak)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 41: Stanley Hauerwas: Character and Narrative (Russell Johnson)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 42: Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel: Spirit of Community (Charles C. Self)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 43: Martin Heidegger: Being, Language, and the Value of Rhetoric (Michael J. Hyde)
  • Central Themes
  • Being-With-Others and the World of Know-How
  • The Practice of Rhetoric
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 44: Agnes Heller: Ethics in Modernity (Clifford Christians)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 45: Thomas Hobbes: Individualism, the Polis, and the Social Contract Revisited (Richard H. Thames / Matthew P. Mancino)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 46: David Hume: Power of Sensations (Ronald C. Arnett)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 47: Edmund Husserl: To the Things Themselves (Algis Mickunas)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Chapter 48: Luce Irigaray: Unmasking Patriarchy (Annette M. Holba)
  • Central Themes
  • Sexed Identity/Sexual Difference
  • Female Genealogy
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 49: Isocrates: Ethics and Oratory (Kenneth R. Chase)
  • Central Themes
  • Honoring Logos
  • Educating Virtue
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 50: Immanuel Kant: Morality as Universal Law (Scott R. Stroud)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 51: Søren Kierkegaard: Subjectivity, Authenticity, and Christianity (John H. Prellwitz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 52: Martin Luther King, Jr.: Religious Nonviolence (John B. Hatch)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 53: Lawrence Kohlberg: Moral Development (Kristen Lynn Majocha)
  • Central Themes
  • Level 1 “Pre-conventional”
  • Level 2 “Conventional”
  • Level 3 “Post-conventional”
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 54: Laozi: Ethics of Actionless Action (Guo-Ming Chen)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 55: Emmanuel Levinas: The Other (Amit Pinchevski)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 56: John Locke: Communication and Its Spiritual Connection (Frank J. Macke)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 57: Jean François Lyotard: Incommunicability (Andrew R. Smith)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 58: Niccolò Machiavelli: Conflict, Politics, and Ethics (Amanda G. Mckendree)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implication
  • Notes
  • Chapter 59: Alasdair MacIntyre: Communication Ethics—Tradition(s), Narrative(s), Virtue(s) (Janie Marie Harden Fritz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 60: Gabriel Marcel: Human Inter-Personal Experience (Fadoua Loudiy)
  • Central Themes
  • Communicative Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 61: Karl Marx: Historical Materialism, Ethics, and Communication (Fred Evans)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 62: Marshall McLuhan: Awakening Awareness (Anthony M. Wachs)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 63: George Herbert Mead: I and Me (Mark Hickson III)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 64: Maurice Merleau-Ponty: Phenomenology of Ethics (Richard L. Lanigan)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 65: John Stuart Mill: Principle of Utility (Karen E. Whedbee)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 66: Iris Murdoch: Moral Action in Everyday Life (Christina L. Mcdowell Marinchak)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 67: Jean-Luc Nancy: Community, Freedom, Unworking (Ira J. Allen)
  • Central Themes
  • Community
  • Freedom
  • Unworking
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 68: Reinhold Niebuhr: Christian Realism (Craig T. Maier)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 69: Friedrich Nietzsche: From Nihilism to Affirmation (Annette M. Holba)
  • Central Themes
  • Good/Bad and Good/Evil
  • Power
  • Eternal Recurrence and Affirmation
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 70: Nel Noddings: Ethics of Care (Marie H. Baker-Ohler / Annette M. Holba)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 71: Martha C. Nussbaum: Story-Laden Care (Pat Arneson)
  • Central Themes
  • Emotion and Ethics
  • Capabilities Approach
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 72: José Ortega y Gasset: Perspectivalism (Ramsey Eric Ramsey)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 73: Charles Sanders Peirce: Logic and Ethics (Isaac E. Catt)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 74: Stephen Coburn Pepper: Contextualist Ethics in Pragmaticism (Richard L. Lanigan)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 75: Chaïm Perelman: Double Fidélité (David A. Frank)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 76: Josef Pieper: Philosophy of Leisure (Annette M. Holba)
  • Central Themes
  • Happiness
  • Contemplation
  • Leisure
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 77: Marcel Proust: Pursuing a True Self (David Deiuliis)
  • Central Themes
  • Inner World
  • Outer World
  • Communication
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 78: Quintilian: The Perfect Orator (David Fleming)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Reading
  • Notes
  • Chapter 79: John Rawls: Theorizing Justice (Klaus Bruhn Jensen)
  • Central Themes
  • The Original Position
  • The Overlapping Consensus
  • The Law of Peoples
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 80: Thomas Reid: Common Sense (Ronald C. Arnett)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 81: Paul Ricoeur: Interpreting the Otherness of Self (Joshua D. Hill)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 82: Richard Rorty: Ethics and Culture (Omar Swartz / Lindsay Miller)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 83: Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Reaffirming the General Will (Melanie Loehwing)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 84: Jalâluddîn Rumi: Communication as the Search for Union (Fadoua Loudiy)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 85: Jean-Paul Sartre: Bad Faith (Andrew Tinker)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 86: Max Scheler: Lived Experience and Ethical Praxis (Stephen Kriss)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 87: Amartya Sen: Ethics, Justice, and Economics (Arshia Anwer)
  • Central Themes
  • Welfare Economics
  • Theory of Justice
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Readings
  • Chapter 88: Richard Sennett: City in Flux (Melba Vélez Ortiz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 89: Henry Sidgwick: The Last Utilitarian (Robert L. Ballard)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 90: Peter Singer: Reformism and Altruism (Patrick Lee Plaisance)
  • Central Themes
  • Poverty
  • Animals
  • Singer’s “Reformist” Utilitarian Framework
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 91: Adam Smith: Sentiment and Commercial Life (Ronald C. Arnett)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 92: Socrates and Plato: Know Thy Self (Christopher Lyle Johnstone)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 93: Benedict Spinoza: Radical Enlightenment (G. L. Ercolini)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 94: Edith Stein: Empathy and Knowing (Melissa Chastain)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Readings
  • Notes
  • Chapter 95: Charles Taylor: Communication Ethics and Sources of the Self (Janie Marie Harden Fritz)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 96: Stephen Toulmin: Theory and Practice (John J. Rief)
  • Central Themes
  • Liberating Ethics from Logical Paternalism
  • Granting Legitimacy to New Participants in the “Court of Reason”
  • Revaluing Phronesis
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 97: Joan C. Tronto: Ethic of Care Across Boundaries (Deborah Eicher-Catt)
  • Central Themes
  • Communicative Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 98: Max Weber: Responsibility and Absolute Ends (Stephen Kriss)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 99: Simone Weil: The Necessity of Roots (Craig T. Maier)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 100: Victoria Welby: Significs, Sense and Responsibility (Susan Petrilli)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 101: Cornel West: Love as Prophetic Pragmatism (George Yancy)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 102: Ludwig Wittgenstein: Reflexivity and Language (Elyse M. Ferraro / Andrew R. Smith)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Notes
  • Chapter 103: Karol Wojtyła: Human Dignity (Paul A. Soukup, S. J.)
  • Central Themes
  • Communication Ethics Implications
  • Further Readings
  • Notes
  • Contributor Biographies
  • Index

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Communication Ethics

Goods in Contention

RONALD C. ARNETT, ANNETTE M. HOLBA, AND SUSAN MANCINO

Communication ethics is perspective laden. Diverse orientations, such as virtue ethics, normative ethics, applied ethics, philosophical ethics, and dialogic ethics to name but a few, frame communication ethics. Scholarly books in communication ethics are numerous.1 The importance of communication ethics in this historical moment warrants an expansive collection. An Encyclopedia of Communication Ethics: Goods in Contention complements existing communication ethics scholarship with an examination of 103 scholars who explicitly and implicitly contributed to our understanding of this crucial subject matter. The purpose of this collection is to overview key figures whose work assists our understanding of the development and influence of communication ethics.

The subject matter of communication ethics necessarily constitutes multiple perspectives; there is no consensus, no one agreed-upon understanding of the good. Communication ethics indicates “weight” and “height” about what matters for and within the human condition from a particular perspective. This volume considers the interdependent relation among self, other, and historical context, which calls forth human responsibility. Communication ethics does not render “a straight and narrow path” about the good and the right action but instead explicates and guides from a unique standpoint as one navigates a world of narrative and virtue contention. Communication ethics perspectives respond to the demands and questions of specific historical moments, which situate the contributions of our ← 1 | 2 → selected communication ethics philosophers/practitioners. This volume is organized alphabetically by ethicists’ surnames; the selection offers the reader a wide range of philosophical and practical perspectives on goods in dispute.

Each contribution begins by situating a historical moment that framed an emerging question asked by the ethicist. Two headings structure each entry: the first, “Central Themes,” identifies communication ethics coordinates within the ethicist’s work that respond to the historically-situated question; and the second heading, “Communication Ethics Implications,” emphasizes the ongoing necessity of acknowledging ethical goods in dispute. Strong philosophical insight grounds this volume, which includes various ethical approaches attentive to the application of communication ethics engagement in private and public domains.

We selected voices on communication ethics after considering an individual author’s contribution to the following coordinates: (1) dialectical and dialogical engagement with other scholars and perspectives; (2) the performative praxis of ethics in the interplay of theory and the public domain; and (3) examination of the connection between history and questions with a constitutive ethical theory offering a connecting response. These coordinates or criteria are central to four of our privileged ethicists: Seyla Benhabib, Judith Butler, Alasdair MacIntyre, and Charles Taylor.

Dialogical and dialectical engagement undergirds the work of Seyla Benhabib (b. 1950), the Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Philosophy at Yale University. Her depiction of discourse ethics emphasizes a dialectical meeting of the universal and the communal. Benhabib states, “With this reformulation, universalizability is defined as an intersubjective procedure of argumentation, geared to attain communicative agreement.”2 Benhabib embraces an interactional view of public discourse, assuming that individuals must engage moral respect for others, exhibit egalitarian reciprocity, and attend to the general and concrete other.3 Her assumptions welcome a communicative space for dialogical and dialectical meeting. Benhabib explores ethics and communication within a spirit of moral inquiry attentive to diversity and difference involving voices and perspectives historically and currently responsive to communication ethics.

The performative praxis of ethics between theory and the public domain sustains the work of Judith Butler (b. 1956), the Hannah Arendt Chair and Professor of Philosophy at The European Graduate School (EGS) and the Maxine Elliott Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature and the Program of Critical Theory at the University of California, Berkeley. Butler’s ethics actualize within performativity. Butler contends that identity finds constitution through performativity, manifesting a situated and embedded “I.”4 Butler’s depiction of the “I” is relational, tied to story and community. Subject and the other form a ← 2 | 3 → dynamic moral discourse in the public domain.5 Interdependence, situatedness, and the performative praxis of ethics frame Butler’s insights on the relational development of moral discourse.

Examination of history and questions driving ethical theory is central to the work of both Charles Taylor (b. 1931), a Canadian philosopher and professor emeritus from McGill University, and Alasdair MacIntyre, a Scottish philosopher and professor of philosophy emeritus from University of Notre Dame. Taylor announces the place and role of history in our understanding of the world and human identity within the West. He explicates changes in successive historical moments, which shift our understanding of the good and our conception of the self.6 Taylor explores historical frameworks that give birth to particular questions, requiring us to respond within the “inescapable” limits of a given historical epoch.7

Additionally, MacIntyre emphasizes the interplay between history and ethics. MacIntyre acknowledges the multiplicity of philosophical standpoints that shape our understanding of the lifeworld and contour our judgments. MacIntyre provides a textured history of ethics that reveals the evolution of an “unhappy consciousness” that yields emotivism (decision making by personal preference), and a fascination with an abstract conception of the self.8 Emotivism ruptures communal and social ties and connections, lending a performative picture of why communication ethics is now an essential part of communication study. Dialogical and dialectical engagement, performative praxis of ethics, and the intimate relationship between historical moments and ethical reflection provide a background for understanding author selection for this volume, An Encyclopedia of Communication Ethics: Goods in Contention.

Notes

1. For example, see Pat Arneson, Communicative Engagement and Social Liberation: Justice Will Be Made (Madison, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2014); Pat Arneson, Exploring Communication Ethics: Interviews with Influential Scholars in the Field (New York: Peter Lang, 2007); Ronald C. Arnett, Communication Ethics in Dark Times: Hannah Arendt’s Rhetoric of Warning and Hope (Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 2012); Ronald C. Arnett, Levinas’s Rhetorical Demand: The Unending Obligation of Communication Ethics (Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 2017); Ronald C. Arnett and Pat Arneson, Dialogic Civility in a Cynical Age: Community, Hope, and Interpersonal Relationships (Albany, NY: State University of New York, 1999); Ronald C. Arnett, Janie M. Harden Fritz, and Leeanne Bell, Communication Ethics Literacy: Dialogue and Difference (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2009); Ronald C. Arnett and Pat Arneson (Eds.), Philosophy of Communication Ethics: Alterity and the Other (Madison, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson ← 3 | 4 → University Press, 2014); Marie Baker-Ohler and Annette M. Holba, The Communicative Relationship Between Dialogue and Care (Amherst, NY: Cambria Press, 2009); George Cheney, Steve May, and Debashish Munshi, The Handbook of Communication Ethics (New York, NY: Routledge, 2011); Clifford G. Christians and Michael Traber (Eds.), Communication Ethics and Universal Values (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 1997); Gary Comstock, Research Ethics: A Philosophical Guide to the Responsible Conduct of Research (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2012); Nick Couldry, Mirca Madianou, and Amit Pinchevski (Eds.), Ethics of Media (New York, NY: Springer, 2013); Stephen Darwall, Philosophical Ethics: An Historical and Contemporary Introduction (New York: Westview Press, 1997); G. L. Ercolini, Kant’s Philosophy of Communication (Pittsburgh, PA: Duquesne University Press, 2016); James Fieser, Metaethics, Normative Ethics, and Applied Ethics: Historical and Contemporary Readings (Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing, 1999); Janie M. Harden Fritz, Professional Civility: Communicative Virtue at Work (New York: Peter Lang, 2013); Pat J. Gehrke, The Ethics and Politics of Speech: Communication and Rhetoric in the Twentieth Century (Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 2009); Annette M. Holba, Philosophical Leisure: Recuperative Praxis for Human Communication (Milwaukee, WI: Marquette University Press, 2007); Annette M. Holba, Transformative Leisure: A Philosophy of Communication (Milwaukee, WI: Marquette University Press, 2013); Michael J. Hyde, Perfection: Coming to Terms with Being Human (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2010); Michael J. Hyde, The Life-Giving Gift of Acknowledgment (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2005); Michael J. Hyde, The Call of Conscience: Heidegger and Levinas, Rhetoric and the Euthanasia Debate (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 2001); James A. Jaksa and Michael S. Pritchard, Communication Ethics: Methods of Analysis (New York, NY: Hampton Press, 1996); J. Vernon Jensen, Ethical Issues in the Communication Process (Abington, UK: Routledge, 2009); Richard Johannesen, Ethics in Human Communication (Columbus, OH: Merrill, 1975); Lisbeth Lipari, Listening, Thinking, Being: Toward an Ethics of Attunement (University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2014); James A. Mackin, Community over Chaos: An Ecological Perspective on Communication Ethics (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1997); Josina Makau and Debian L. Marty, Cooperative Argumentation: A Model for Deliberative Community (Long Grove, IL: Waveland Press, 2001); Josina Makau and Ronald C. Arnett (Eds.), Communication Ethics in an Age of Diversity (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1997); Rita Manning and Scott R. Stroud, A Practical Guide to Ethics: Living and Leading with Integrity (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2008); William Neher and Paul Sandin, Communicating Ethically: Character, Duties, Consequences, and Relationships (New York: Routledge, 2017); Scott R. Stroud, Kant and the Promise of Rhetoric (University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2014); Scott R. Stroud, John Dewey and the Artful Life: Pragmatism, Aesthetics, and Morality (University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2011); Paula Tompkins, Practicing Communication Ethics: Development, Discernment, and Decision-Making (New York: Routledge, 2010).

2. Seyla Benhabib, Situating the Self: Gender, Community and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics (New York: Routledge, 1992), 28.

3. Ibid. Also see Ronald C. Arnett and Annette M. Holba, An Overture to Philosophy of Communication (New York: Peter Lang Publishing, 2012), 227. ← 4 | 5 →

4. Arnett and Holba, An Overture to Philosophy of Communication.

5. Judith Butler, Giving an Account of Oneself (New York: Fordham University Press, 2005).

6. Charles Taylor, Sources of the Self: The Making of Modern Identity (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1989).

7. Ibid., 17.

8. See Alasdair MacIntyre, A Short History of Ethics (New York: Collier, 1966), 202 and After Virtue: A Study of Moral Theory (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1981).

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Theodor Wiesengrund Adorno

Critical Theory and Ethics

ALAIN LÉTOURNEAU

Born in Frankfurt (Germany), Theodor Wiesengrund Adorno (1903–1969) was educated by his mother and sister who were both musicians; he was an accomplished pianist, a composer, and art critic while still in his Frankfurt formative years. It took him many years to choose philosophy over music. From a philosophical perspective, he published numerous articles, the Philosophy of the New Music, culminating with his Aesthetic Theory even if that book is larger in breadth. In philosophy, he discovered Kant as a teenager with his lifelong friend Siegfried Kracauer,1 and continued referring to Kant all his life; he historicizes Kant, both in terms of knowledge and of moral philosophy issues. He was stricken by Kierkegaard and became very close with Walter Benjamin, not to forget the importance of Ernst Bloch’s influence, especially at the time of The Spirit of Utopia. These names hint at the fact that some “inverse theology” is implied in his thinking. Related to utopia as desire, it allows to counter balance the negative whole of this false—but very real—social totality, in which we live a life that is mutilated, damaged. It reverses hope’s point of entry: acknowledging the human suffering itself is the reference point, not positive ideas, first principles and other “grounds”. It is also “inverse” because any picture of utopia or of the divine is forcibly indeterminate.2 Marx comes along for him and is integrated in a philosophical perspective that has much to do with culture and sensibility, materialism infused with the conscience of hope and humanism3—a kind of hope that deprives us of an obvious ← 6 | 7 → “solution” that could readily be implemented. Negative dialectic, the key concept in Adorno’s thinking, has no Hegelian “solution” on some other side of society’s contradictions.

Adorno, along with Max Horkheimer, is the principal thinker of the Frankfurt School, an appellation dating from the return of the two philosophers to Germany, originally the Institute for Social Research (Institute für Sozialforschung). It was created by the German government as a private research institution in 1923, funded with money coming from the father of Adorno’s friend, Felix Weil. At the beginning, this institution understood itself in a classical Marxist perspective (under the heading of its first director, Carl Grünberg); this version of the Institute was quite sympathetic to the USSR’s leadership at the time. But it became, under Horkheimer’s direction, an interdisciplinary research endeavor, evolving into what could be called a humanistic, non-dogmatic version of a Marxist critique of society and culture, independent of any communist party as such. A good example of Adorno’s critique of Marxist orthodoxy can be found in his reading of Gyorgy Lukacs.4

Adorno was well known, of course, for the famous book Dialectic of Enlightenment, co-written with Horkheimer, which, most of the time, leaves an impression of pessimism: reason and domination seem to have the same destiny. But then again, criticism should not be confused here with ontological statements—that would be too simple a position. Saying that science in its critique of mythology, tends to be infused with the same force that was retired to the myths does not mean that they have the same value, or that we should devalue science as mythology. The Enlightenment is not to be limited to the period between Descartes and Herder; its ideas can also be found in Empedocles. We have to enlighten the Enlightenment by criticizing identity-thinking, a fixation on concepts that ends up in irrationality.

Like many others, Adorno fled Germany during the rise of the Nazis. Obviously, in and around 1933, under Hitler these leftist and Jewish philosophers and thinkers were not at home anymore; he first went to England. At the moment he was organizing to live with his wife in London, he moved to America because of an opportunity to do empirical research on communication and media with Paul Lazarsfeld, a scientist living in the United States, at the Princeton Radio Project.5 Lazarsfeld would be a challenging colleague for Adorno. This practice of research was not easy for a European philosopher, but he learned a great deal in it, notably about the limits of quantitative methods. This prolonged stay included many years on the West Coast near Hollywood. Horkheimer and Adorno returned to Germany only after the war. Adorno would officially take the direction of the Institute in the late 1950s. Back in Germany, Adorno became one of the greatest sociologists of his time as the chair of the German Society of Sociology. ← 7 | 8 →

Central Themes

It would be hard to find an explicit teaching in Adorno’s writing about what is sometimes called communication ethics. The misunderstanding would be total if we were to embark on such an enterprise as if to arrive at specific rules, values or norms that would be in a position to guide human action directly. We are living in a false world, a damaged life (beschädigten Leben, a mutilated life); we cannot minimize the importance of this. To communicate clearly and unambiguously does not prevent us from being complicit with reification and domination. Involvement and a choice in favor of an abrasive, hermetic style rejoin each other in Adorno’s paratactic, or musical and aphoristic writing.6 For him, the ideal of communication is and remains an ideal of manipulation—because forcibly things at a systemic level will not give to transparency and clarity what is expected of them. In his writing, he eludes clarity and definitions, because too much transparency would be complacent to a systemic whole that is defined by domination. Contrary to Habermas, who aimed at argumentative clarity and looked for verification in intersubjective discussions, this remains an illusion for Adorno. Critical thinking confronts those impasses explicitly—and not with the ideal of surpassing by consensus building such dead ends.

Communication ethics can be discussed (1) at the mass media level, (2) at the interpersonal level, and more recently (3) at the organizational and (4) foundational level.7 Habermas has tried to show that Adorno’s remarks on the failures of communication, notably the stultifying effects of mass communication,8 imply nonetheless an ideal of communicative understanding; but such an understanding remains of a utopian nature for Adorno. It is elusive, not something onto which you can build or an end that can actually be pursued. If it were to be taken as a normative ideal, (taking its place in definite speech acts, aiming at mutual understanding), such a perspective would certainly transform itself into an ideology, becoming a part of a system that has power and that we sustain.

If we consider the interpersonal level, again the critical stance involves avoiding complacency. Notably, the I−Thou relationship considered in Adorno’s point of view is part of the “jargon of authenticity”, along with Heidegger’s and Jasper’s catchwords, constituting the German ideology of his time9. With the Buberian approach we see a double sagging of the theological in immanence and of the metaphysical into the interpersonal. Buber recognizes the double contingency of human relations, but pleads authenticity (uprightness), and for Adorno, he ignores the necessity of institutional support for human interactions.10 God’s word can hardly be found in interpersonal relationships, since after the Holocaust, nothing was left undamaged. To paraphrase, we could say ← 8 | 9 → that divinizing the relational and humanizing the divine might not be the way to realize one or the other.

I forego the organizational level, because there is not much to say outside the general critique of bureaucracy when you understand Weber and Kafka. But for the foundational issue, let us look at Habermas as Adorno’s critique. In The Theory of Communicative Action, Vol. I, Habermas recalls the Frankfurt School’s reprisal of the reification theory developed first by Marx, then by Lukacs; his main reference is to the Dialectic of Enlightenment. The hypothesis is that Negative Dialectics, which radicalizes and enlarges from a historical point of view the critique of reification understood as rationalization and identity thinking, is stuck into a philosophy of consciousness, as it is stuck into a contradiction with itself. On one side, philosophy continues to consider the whole of the human historical situation. It seeks the origins before domination and keeps the contemplative character of philosophy; but on the other side, all of this tentative work is considered ideology. As he explains in the chapter “Horkheimer and Adorno” (Philosophical discourse of modernity), total critique and total demystification of domination in power still require at least one rational criteria that would count as valid—an element not assumed by Adorno. He specifies how the School’s critique stays caught into subject-object relationships. For him all of this is instrumental reason, nothing else; but he misses the utopian character of thought according to Adorno, along with his radical critique of subjective idealism.

Communication Ethics Implications

The project to separate knowledge and power is purist, necessarily happening when radical critique, in its project of an “ultimate demystification,” shows these power aspects leading to the point of knowledge’s own extinction. Therefore Adorno circulates between a Negative Dialectic and an Aesthetic theory, which are not sufficient for overcoming the difficulties. The dialectic denounces identity thinking because concepts always subsume a plurality of elements under a unity, is reductive until it sees its own limits. Also, in the good philosophical tradition, since omni determinatio est negatio, necessarily we come to negate the characteristic of the object of thought if we want to overcome it; the fact that this negation of the negation does not lead us to a positive is crucial—we have to get things from a different side. In response to these limits of identity thinking, Adorno calls for a “constellation” approach, an element not discussed in Habermas’ critique. A plurality of models are to be constructed, as historical approaches of what is to grasp and understand. In Aesthetic Theory, he develops a truth content of avant-garde art creations, in the process of mimesis; for Adorno the separation of art from science was a mistake. ← 9 | 10 → To understand the knowledge value of mimesis in art, we need to let go of the philosophy of conscience. Since Adorno died before Habermas could fully develop his thinking, it is impossible to know what he would have answered. But if all the difficulties raised with reason can also be given with communication, we might have to keep a reservation towards what would resemble the aufhebung of universal reason in universal communication—and that might also have some ethical dimension to it.

Notes

1. Simon Jarvis, Adorno: A Critical Introduction (New York: Polity Press, 1998).

2. Martin Shuster, “Adorno and Negative Theology,” Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 37, no. 1 (August 2016): 119.

3. Marie-Andrée Ricard, Adorno l’humaniste: Essai sur sa pensée morale et politique (Paris: Éditions de la Maison des sciences de l’homme, 2012).

4. Theodor W. Adorno, Notes on Literature, Vol. 1 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1991), 216f.

5. Stefan Müller-Doohm, Adorno: A Biography (New York: Polity Press, 2009), 230.

6. Frédéric Vandengerghe, Une histoire critique de la sociologie allemande: II: Horkheimer, Adorno, Marcuse, Habermas (Paris: La découverte/M.A.U.S.S., 1998), 59.

7. Jürgen Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action: Reason and the Rationalization of Society, Vol. 1, trans. Thomas McCarthy (Boston: Beacon Press, 1987).

8. Matthew G. Specter, Habermas: An Intellectual Biography (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 27.

9. Theodor W. Adorno, The Jargon of Authenticity (Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 1973), 16−17.

10. M. Brumlik, “Theology without Thorns? Adorno’s critique of Buber,” in New Perspectives on Martin Buber, ed. M. Zank (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2006), 247–53.

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Kwame Anthony Appiah

Cosmopolitanism

ANNETTE M. HOLBA

Kwame Anthony Akroma-Ampin Kusi Appiah (1954–) was born in London and is a Ghanaian-American philosopher interested in political and moral theory, critically analyzing culture, and writing novels. Appiah’s father, Joseph Emmanuel Appiah, was a Ghanaian law school student in London when he met Appiah’s mother, Enid Margaret Cripps (“Peggy”), a British citizen living in London. Joseph Appiah worked as a lawyer, politician, and member of Parliament; Peggy Appiah was a children’s writer and novelist. Appiah’s parents married in 1953 and, according to his personal website (appiah.net), it was one of the first interracial society weddings in Britain.

Kwame Anthony Appiah was educated at the University Primary School at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi; Ullenwood Manor, in Gloucestershire; and Port Regis and Bryanston Schools, in Dorset. He also attended Clare College, Cambridge University, in England, where he earned a B.A. and Ph.D. degree in philosophy. He has taught at Yale, Cornell, Duke, and Harvard Universities in the United States and has lectured for universities in Germany, Ghana, South Africa, and France. He held a faculty position at Princeton University from 2002−2013 as member of the philosophy department and the University Center for Human Values. He was also affiliated with the Center for African American Studies and the African Studies and Translation Studies programs, as well as the Departments of Comparative Literature and Politics. ← 11 | 12 → He holds the title of distinction, Laurance Rockefeller University Professor of Philosophy and the University Center for Human Values Emeritus, Princeton University, and is an Honorary Fellow, Clare College, Cambridge University. Appiah is currently Professor of Philosophy and Law at NYU with research interests including ethics, political philosophy, philosophy of mind, philosophy of race, probability, and decision theory. Appiah has developed a noteworthy body of scholarship in African and African-American cultural studies. His award-winning book, In My Father’s House, considers the influence and impact of African and African-American intellectuals in shaping African cultural life today.1

Appiah’s work explores the social and psychological presuppositions of democracy, interrogates methods in how human beings know and understand values, and advocates praxis related to living a moral life. As an engaged philosopher and ethicist, summarizing Appiah’s philosophy is a monumental task because it is contained within nineteen non-fiction single-authored books, twenty edited books, three novels, poetry, public reports, over two hundred scholarly articles, over seventy book reviews, over fifty published discussions and interviews, over seven hundred public lectures and papers, nine encyclopedia articles, seven films, and one podcast. General themes can be identified as ethics and culture, ethics and identity, ethics and cosmopolitanism, and ethics and the humanities. Topics within these themes include citizenship, leadership, human rights, honor, and philosophy of language. He has also infused African philosophy and ethical systems into mainstream western philosophy.

Appiah has received many awards for his scholarship. In 2012, Appiah received the 2012 National Humanities Award and in 2015 Appiah was identified as #95 on a Global Thought Leader list by the World Post. Most noteworthy, the Spinoza Prize Foundation honored Appiah as the 2016 Spinozalens Laureate, an award that pairs a living thinker with a dead thinker, both of whom focus their work on ethics and society; Appiah was paired with Hannah Arendt. Appiah has served as president of various scholarly associations and currently serves on various non-profit boards.

A major thesis in Appiah’s philosophy involves questions of ethics and identity in personal and political lives. He interrogates the claims of individuality, the task of making a life for oneself, and the way we define ourselves through claims of identity. He also interrogates cosmopolitanism through a moral lens and begins with the idea that who we are must necessarily be linked to what we are.

In Appiah’s early work he focused on probabilistic semantics and theories of meaning. Appiah’s interest evolved to philosophical problems of race, racism, identity, and moral theory. Tied to his interest in identity and culture, Appiah ← 12 | 13 → asks the question, what is the relationship between identities and individuality? His specific questions are “Do identities represent a curb on autonomy, or do they provide its contours? What claims, if any, can identity groups as such justly make upon the state?”2

Appiah responds to these questions by engaging conversations across disciplines and inviting others into the broader discussion. Starting from the position that identities make ethical claims, Appiah navigates these questions in conversation with John Stuart Mill’s notion of individuality; though not in complete agreement with Mill’s analysis, he presents questions of autonomy, debates involving citizenship and identity, the role of the state in the individual’s ethical flourishing, and the negotiations and tensions between partiality and morality.3

Appiah does not provide final answers to his questions. He refers to himself as a poor physician; one who is only interested in diagnosing but not curing. Appiah engages these questions in the spirit of exploration and admits that philosophy is better at framing questions than writing policies. It is his main task to “make sense of the relations between identity and individuality—between the what and the who—…”4 Appiah opens the conversation through these questions and, through the lens of cosmopolitanism, he asserts that, as human beings, we are good at being responsible for those closest to us, especially through face-to-face encounters. However, within our global contexts, we must be responsible for our fellow citizens around the world. The question he poses within this framework is, can we actually figure out how to do this? In other words, can we figure out how to be responsible for our fellow citizens around the world with whom we do not have face-to-face encounters? His questions are interconnected and can be explored further through the coordinates of identity, individuality, and cosmopolitanism.

Central Themes

Identity

Appiah suggests that identity can serve as an instrument of subordination, a constraint on autonomy, or a proxy for misfortune.5 Identity also provides contexts for decisions, defines the shape of our lives, and provides a basis for community and positive forms of solidarity. Appiah states the contours of identity can divide and cause disharmony but it can also unify across identities. These are the insights that shape his claim that identity makes ethical claims; depending upon contexts, individual identity and identifying with a group are decisions we make or are made upon us, both of which have the potential to impact others. ← 13 | 14 →

Individuality

Individuality can be a double-edged sword according to Appiah. He suggests that individuality is ultimately the responsibility for the person whose life it is that is making a decision. Appiah believed that it is every individual’s responsibility to be in the business of making their own life—that is our task as individual human beings. At the same time, Appiah rejected any form of humanism that would ignore differences with other people, societies, and cultures. Instead, honoring differences and bringing them into the conversation and engagement with others would make the meeting more rewarding and the interaction more authentic. This is what Appiah suggested would cultivate a rooted cosmopolitanism.

Details

Pages
VIII, 582
ISBN (PDF)
9781433152450
ISBN (ePUB)
9781433152467
ISBN (MOBI)
9781433152474
ISBN (Book)
9781433152443
Language
English
Publication date
2018 (June)
Published
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, VIII, 582 pp. 1 b/w ill., 7 tables

Biographical notes

Ronald C. Arnett (Volume editor) Annette M. Holba (Volume editor) Susan Mancino (Volume editor)

RONALD C. ARNETT (Ph.D., Ohio University, 1978) is Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication & Rhetorical Studies and the Patricia Doherty Yoder and Ronald Wolfe Endowed Chair in Communication Ethics at Duquesne University. He is the author/coauthor of eleven books and the recipient of six book awards. ANNETTE M. HOLBA (Ph.D., Duquesne University, 2005) is Professor of Rhetoric at Plymouth State University. Her books include Transformative Leisure: A Philosophy of Communication (2013); An Overture to Philosophy of Communication: The Carrier of Meaning (coauthor, Ronald C. Arnett); and Philosophical Leisure: Recuperative Praxis for Human Communication (2007). SUSAN MANCINO (Ph.D., Duquesne University, 2018) is the author of four journal articles and four book chapters. Her works have appeared in Review of Communication, The Atlantic Journal of Communication, and Empedocles: European Journal for the Philosophy of Communication.

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Title: An Encyclopedia of Communication Ethics