Monday, November 07, 2011

New book on Habermas's Political Philosophy

Mimesis and Reason
Habermas's Political Philosophy

by Gregg Daniel Miller

(State University of New York Press, 2011)

199 pages


Complicating the standard interpretation of Habermas as a proceduralist, Mimesis and Reason uncovers the role that mimesis, or imitation, plays as a genuinely political force in communicative action. Through a penetrating examination of Habermas’s use of themes and concepts from Plato, George Herbert Mead, and Walter Benjamin, Gregg Daniel Miller reconstructs Habermas’s theory to reveal a new, postmetaphysical articulation of reason that lays the groundwork for new directions in political theory.



1. Reason and Mimesis [pdf]
2. Mimesis in Communicative Action: Habermas and Plato
3. The Subject in Communicative Action: Habermas and George Herbert Mead
4. The Experience of Mimesis: Habermas and Walter Benjamin

Coda: Habermas and the Affective Bond of Understanding


"Moving beyond the impasse of mimesis versus communicative rationality, an alternative that pitted Adorno against Habermas, Gregg Daniel Miller opens up a new vista in the continuing effort to develop a viable Critical Theory for the twenty-first century. Drawing on the insights of Mead and Benjamin, he imaginatively and persuasively etablishes a point d'appui for rational critique that entents well beyond wan proceduralism without regressing to a discredited metaphisics."
- Martin Jay, University of California, Berkeley

Gregg Daniel Miller is Lecturer at the University of Washington. In 2006, Gregg David Miller was awarded the Western Political Science Association's Best Dissertation Award for "Mimesis in Communicative Action: Habermas and the Affective Bond of Understanding."

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