This paper is a reply to D. Kralechkin’s review of my book “Political Logic of Plato and Overcoming of Platonism by the Post-Nietzschean wave” (2014). Against the reviewer’s opinion, my reason to discuss Plato’s legacy was not that I wanted to rehabilitate his name in the history of philosophy. I aimed at overcoming the dogmatism of the two dominant schools in the contemporary philosophy, i.e. the continental (‘post-Nietzschean’) and the analytical ones. My typological method of approaching the history of philosophy allows to see the implicit possibilities and the limits of the post-Nietzschean intellectual wave – its obsession with the problem of freedom and its ignorance of the problem of justice. Unlike the reviewer, I consider the shift in the key terminology from the notion of freedom to the notion of difference not as an independent development within the poststructuralism. It is rather a part of the global philosophic trend, whereby any exceptional speech of positive freedom is bound to inflate the old vocabulary and give incentives to the emergence of fresh metaphors. My interpretation of Plato’s political philosophy is not the same as my argument about the invariant problem of the political reality, which is the problem of the mutual untranslatability between the language of the anomic freedom and the language of the communal justice. As we focus of the latter issue, this problem has become invisible today due to the dominance of the two philosophical schools. This diagnosis of the contemporary situation in the philosophy is independent from my historical studies. Limiting the ramifications to Russia, it is safe to say that it would be nonsense for us to await salvation from a direct import of either continental or analytical political theories. Local constant distortion in favor of the continental thought proves the absolute compatibility of those allegedly radical ideas with the preservation of status-quo. The reason for that, as well as for the impossibility of any direct import of the normative political recipes, is the absence of what we may call the common language of thought in the local political community.
There are three phases in the research about authorship and free speech that have been essential to Foucault throughout his life. They can be associated with such texts as the three reports “What is an Author?” (the first phase), “What is Critique?,” and “What is revolution?” (the second phase), and the two lecture courses, “Fearless Speech,” and “The Courage of the Truth” (the third phase). Initially, Foucault merely describes “founders of discursivity” (hence, the “superauthors”), among whom he reckoned only Marx and Freud, as an exclusive alternative to his own conceptualization of “the author function,” which is a mass feature of the contemporary society. Then, he modifies his views on the “superauthorship.” Kant becomes his paradigm, and Foucault associates his concept of free speech with a critical attitude. However, Foucault claims only a half of the Kantian philosophical legacy that is related to the research into the “ontology of ourselves.” My hypothesis is that a sovereign use of free speech, which can be associated with the names of Marx and Heidegger and in general with the concept of “superauthorship,” becomes unacceptable for Foucault. During the third phase, danger of a tyrannical use of free speech compels Foucault to undertake a number of fruitful but questionable research decisions. He focuses on a single aspect of free speech, where a speaker is in a weaker position and therefore has to tell the truth despite fear of sanctions. Foucault associates this kind of free speech with the Ancient Greek notion of parrhesia, which according to his interpretation means “fearless speech;” however, this reading is not always supported by Ancient Greek sources. In the end of his research Foucault comes to a radical conclusion that free speech transforms into performative “aesthetics of existence.” For Foucault, the main motive behind this lifelong research was investigation into his own abilities and powers as an author.
This article focuses on hip-hop as a movement of popular culture. e arti- cle has two main aims. First, observa- tion and discourse analysis, which will identify the principal tropes and com- monalities through which researchers and critics of popular culture construct the unity of their analytical narration and subjects of research. It is argued that the achieved discursive unity (the unity of concepts, subjects or themes) does not allow researchers to capture hip-hop as movement in popular cul- ture in all its diversity and heterogeneity. It is argued that academic researchers and critics of hip-hop culture are trapped in representations of the fun- damental di erences between “mainstream” and “underground.” e article shows that research on this topic is dominated by a kind of narrative sce- nario shaped in the post-war decades that depicts subculture as growing into a cultural movement with potential for progressive liberation.
The second task of the article is pragmatic: to show why hip-hop is interesting in the current political cir- cumstances. is questioning allows the author to formulate the following theses: 1) the eclecticism of values and style in mainstream and under- ground music renders the di erence between them irrelevant; 2) the culture of hip-hop, with its aura of the local or the regional, is one of the manifesta- tions of the antimodernization momen- tum; 3) the masculinity of hip-hop, its racial identity pathos and romanticizing gangsterism are manifestations of young peoples’ conservative reaction to rapid transformations of their social milieu; 4) the protest culture of hip-hop di ers radically from youth protests against capitalism and bureaucracy of the 1960– 1970s, with its pathos of gender and race equality, preaching of love and non-vio- lence.
In this article, the author addresses the topic of bad cinema, referring to the basic concepts of aesthetic theory: the power and grounds of judgment. He comments on the need for researchers to investigate alternative cinema, beyond mainstream and art-house. The author aims to attract the attention of young humanitarians to bad cinema. The text discusses the following questions: When and how did discourse on alternative (bad) cinema appear in the Western public and academic spaces, within which themes in cinema studies are “bad films” typically studied, the grounds on which the subject makes a judgment of taste, according to which a particular film is good or bad. Borrowing the concept of “heterotopia” from Michel Foucault, the author points out that although “heterotopias of bad taste” supposedly let “utopia of good taste” to remain “a measure of quality,” in fact they they imply that good taste is impossible.
The article is a contribution to the ethical discussion of autonomous lethal weapons. The emergence of military robots acting independently on the battlefield is seen as an inevitable stage in the development of modern warfare because they will provide a critical advantage to an army. Even though there are already some social movements calling for a ban on “killer robots,” ethical arguments in favor of developing those technologies also exist. In particular, the utilitarian tradition may find that military robots are ethically permissible if “non-human combat” would minimize the number of human victims. A deontological analysis for its part might suggest that ethics is impossible without an ethical subject. Immanuel Kant’s ethical philosophy would accommodate the intuition that there is a significant difference between a situation in which a person makes a decision to kill another person and a situation in which a machine makes such a decision. Like animals, robots become borderline agents on the edges of “moral communities.” Using the discussion of animal rights, we see how Kant’s ethics operates with non-human agents. The key problem in the use of autonomous weapons is the transformation of war and the unpredictable risks associated with blurring the distinction between war and police work. The hypothesis of the article is that robots would not need to kill anyone to defeat the enemy. If no one dies in a war, then there is no reason not to extend its operations to non-combatants or to sue for peace. The analysis presented by utilitarianism overlooks the possibility of such consequences. The main problem of autonomous lethal weapons is their autonomy and not their potential to be lethal