The Radical Luhmann

Kobo ebook | November 29, 2011

byHans-Georg Moeller

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In The Radical Luhmann, Hans-Georg Moeller focuses on Luhmann's paradigm shift from philosophy to theory, which introduced new perspectives on the contemporary world. Boldly breaking with the heritage of Western thought, Luhmann denied the central role of humans in social theory, particularly the possibility of autonomous agency. In this way, after Copernicus's cosmological, Darwin's biological, and Freud's psychological deconstructions of anthropocentrism, he added a sociological "fourth insult" to human vanity. A theoretical shift toward complex system-environment relations helped Luhmann "accidentally" solve one of Western philosophy's primary problems: mind-body dualism. By pulling communication into the mix, Luhmann finally rendered the Platonic dualist heritage obsolete. Moeller's clear presentation opens these formulations to a wide audience and directly relates Luhmannian theory to contemporary issues in democracy, art, education, justice, human rights, and mass media.

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In The Radical Luhmann, Hans-Georg Moeller focuses on Luhmann's paradigm shift from philosophy to theory, which introduced new perspectives on the contemporary world. Boldly breaking with the heritage of Western thought, Luhmann denied the central role of humans in social theory, particularly the possibility of autonomous agency. In th...

Hans-Georg Moeller is a senior lecturer in the Philosophy Department at University College Cork in Cork, Ireland. Author and editor of ten books, his works include The Philosophy of the Daodejing, The Moral Fool: A Case for Amorality, both Choice outstanding academic titles, and Luhmann Explained.

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Format:Kobo ebookPublished:November 29, 2011Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231527179

ISBN - 13:9780231527170

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Table of Contents

Preface
I. Introduction
1. The Trojan Horse: Luhmann's (Not So) Hidden Radicalism
2. Why He Wrote Such Bad Books
II. From Philosophy to Theory
3. The Fourth Insult: A Refutation of Humanism
4. From Necessity to Contingency: A Carnivalization of Philosophy
5. The Last Footnote to Plato: A Solution to the Mind-Body Problem
6. Ecological Evolution: A Challenge to Social Creationism
7. Constructivism as Postmodernist Realism: A Teaching of Differences
8. Democracy as a Utopia: A Deconstruction of Politics
9. Conclusion. Nec spe nec metu: Neither Hope nor Fear
Appendix: Niklas Luhmann (1927--1998): A Short Intellectual Biography
Abbreviations
Notes
Index

Editorial Reviews

The fact that Moeller has written such a convincing thesis is a major achievement in itself. It is made more impressive by the fact that he has, through the avoidance of sociological jargon and copious examples to illustrate his points, succeeded in conveying complex, abstract ideas in a way that makes them accessible to readers across a wide range of academic disciplines. The Radical Luhmann is the most comprehensive and ironical reflection on Luhmann as grand theorist to date. Moeller brings welcome clarity to his evolutionary-ecological systems approach to social theory and argues provocatively that Luhmann's epistemological constructivism is sufficiently radical to merit the description of realism. From ontology to ethics, Moeller effectively demonstrates the synoptic breadth and deconstructive vigor of Luhmann's theory across classical and modern philosophy.