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Critical Theory and FeelingThe Affective Politics of the Early Frankfurt School$
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Simon Mussell

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781526105707

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526105707.001.0001

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Introduction: once more, with feeling

Introduction: once more, with feeling

(p.1) Introduction: once more, with feeling
Critical Theory and Feeling

Simon Mussell

Manchester University Press

The introduction sets out the book’s aims and objectives in relation to the predominant legacies of political philosophy. The author shows how rationalist principles have formed the backbone of Western philosophical thought, invariably in opposition to affect, emotion, feeling, and passion, since the latter are seen to be detrimental to or obstructive of the procedural functionality of reason. In contrast to this, taking Dialectic of Enlightenment as a starting point, it is suggested that early critical theory provides an important corrective to the excesses of formalized, rationalist, and anti-emotional modes of argumentation. The point is that reason in and of itself is not sufficient as a foundation for political theory.

Keywords:   Critical theory, Affect, Dialectic of Enlightenment, Feeling, Emotion, Reason, Rationalism

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