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Helio-Hero

J.E. McGuire, 1 June 1989

The Genesis of the Copernican World 
by Hans Blumenberg, translated by Robert Wallace.
MIT, 772 pp., £35.95, November 1987, 0 262 02267 2
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... motion to be reconciled with Scripture, experience and tradition? It is this dramatic shift that Hans Blumenberg seeks to explain. To this end he sets himself the task of tracing the origin, significance and consequences of Copernicus’s treatise. For Blumenberg the impact of Copernicus cannot be reduced to an ...

Against Belatedness

Richard Rorty, 16 June 1983

The Legitimacy of the Modern Age 
by Hans Blumenberg, translated by Robert Wallace.
MIT, 786 pp., £28.10, June 1983, 0 262 02184 6
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... the more technological mastery we acquire has almost vanished, even from the popular press. But Blumenberg’s book makes all the things that Heidegger made look bad look good again. He turns Heidegger’s story on its head, but does not fall back into the totalising metaphysics which backed up Hegel’s story. He gives us good old-fashioned ...

The Catastrophist

Malcolm Bull: The Apostasies of John Gray, 1 November 2007

Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia 
by John Gray.
Allen Lane, 243 pp., £18.99, July 2007, 978 0 7139 9915 0
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... form of religion ‘derived from the Christian faith in a future goal’. But he was challenged by Hans Blumenberg, who argued that the idea of progress, which extrapolates from the present towards an increasingly stable and reliable future, could not have been derived from Christian theology, which posited ‘an event breaking into ...

All Curls and Pearls

Lorraine Daston: Why are we so curious?, 23 June 2005

The Uses of Curiosity in Early Modern France and Germany 
by Neil Kenny.
Oxford, 484 pp., £68, July 2004, 0 19 927136 4
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... suggests that by the late 17th century they were on the defensive. Historians, most notably Hans Blumenberg, Carlo Ginzburg, Jean Céard, Krzysztof Pomian and William Eamon, have noted the remarkable rise of curiosity and its transvaluation from vice to virtue. They have argued, with varying emphases, that this episode is key to understanding the ...

The Contingency of Language

Richard Rorty, 17 April 1986

... I should like to go over some ground which has been traversed by intellectual historians like Hans Blumenberg, historians who have tried to trace the similarities and dissimilarities between the Age of Faith and the Age of Reason. These historians have made the point which I mentioned earlier, the point that the very idea that the world or the self ...

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