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Original Forgiveness

Nicolas de Warren (author)

ISBN: 9780810142787

Publication Date: Dec 2020

Format: Paperback

Also available as: Hardback  

Challenges the assumption that forgiveness is always a response to something that has incited it. Rather than considering forgiveness in terms of an encounter after injury, Nicolas de Warren argues that availability for the possibility of forgiveness represents an "original forgiveness", an essential condition for the prospect of human relations.
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  • Table of Contents
  • Author Biography
  • Customer Reviews
In Original Forgiveness, Nicolas de Warren challenges the widespread assumption that forgiveness is always a response to something that has incited it. Rather than considering forgiveness exclusively in terms of an encounter between individuals or groups after injury, he argues that availability for the possibility of forgiveness represents an original forgiveness, an essential condition for the prospect of human relations. De Warren develops this notion of original forgiveness through a reflection on the indispensability of trust for human existence, as well as an examination of the refusal or unavailability to forgive in the aftermath of moral harms.

De Warren engages in a critical discussion of philosophical figures, including Martin Heidegger, Hannah Arendt, Mikhail Bakhtin, Edmund Husserl, Gabriel Marcel, Emmanuel Levinas, and Jean AmÉry, and of literary works by William Shakespeare, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Heinrich von Kleist, Simon Wiesenthal, Herman Melville, and Maurice Sendak. He uses this discussion to show that in trusting another person, we must trust in ourselves to remain available to the possibility of forgiveness for those occasions when the other person betrays a trust, without thereby forgiving anything in advance. Original forgiveness is to remain the other person's keeper - even when the other has caused harm. Likewise, being another's keeper calls upon an original beseeching for forgiveness, given the inevitable possibility of blemish or betrayal.

Reviews

Original Forgiveness is a rich intellectual feast, its pages filled with equally adept and illuminating readings of texts philosophical and literary. Its argument about the nature of 'forgiveness' prior to injury or resentment is truly original, in every sense, as is its discussion of the deep relationship between forgiveness and trust. This is a remarkable and wise book that reveals how, why, and when we forgive and trust." - Ashraf H. A. Rushdy, author of After Injury: A Historical Anatomy of Forgiveness, Resentment, and Apology
Pages 304
Dimensions 229 x 152
Date Published 30 Dec 2020
Publisher Northwestern University Press
Series Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy
Subject/s Philosophy   Phenomenology & Existentialism  
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • 1. Upon Trust We Stand, Upon Trust We Fall
  • 2. Forgiveness and the Human Condition
  • 3. The Unforgivable and Forgiving Without Forgiveness
  • 4. The Unforgivable and the Inhuman Condition
  • 5. 'I wonder men dare trust themselves with men': The Forked Significance of Trust
  • 6. 'No cause, no cause': Breakages of Trust and the Availability of Forgiveness
  • 7. The Death of the Other as Murder
  • 8. The Trauma of the Good and the Anarchy of Forgiveness
  • Afterword
  • Notes
  • Index
Nicolas De Warren is an associate professor of philosophy at Penn State University. He is the author of Husserl and the Promise of Time.

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