Description - Language and Reason by Maeve Cooke
Readers of Jurgen Habermas's "Theory of Communicative Action" and his later social theory know that the idea of communicative rationality is central to his version of critical theory. This text provides a general introduction to Habermas's programme of formal pragmatics - his reconstruction of the universal principles of possible understanding that, he argues, operate in everyday communicative practices. Philosophers of language should discover connections between Habermas's account of language and validity (especially his theory of meaning) and their own concerns. This work introduces the theory of communicative action as the background against which the programme of formal pragmatics must be understood. It then outlines the idea of communicative rationality as a postmetaphysical yet nondefeatist conception of reason. Two central chapters detail the connections Habermas asserts between language and validity, with particular attention to his theory of validity claims and his pragmatic theory of meaning. A final chapter looks at Habermas's account of the pathologies of modern society and at communicative rationality as a yardstick for measuring these pathologies.
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(226mm x 150mm x 15mm)
Publisher: MIT Press Ltd
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Author Biography - Maeve Cooke
Maeve Cooke is Associate Professor of German Social and Political Thought at University College Dublin. She is the author of Language and Reason: A Study of Habermas's Pragmatics (MIT Press, 1994) and editor of On the Pragmatics of Communication (MIT Press, 1998), a collection of essays by Jurgen Habermas.