Encountering Cavell: <i>The Education of a Grownup</i>

Russell B. Goodman

in Stanley Cavell and the Education of Grownups

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780823234738
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823240753 | DOI:

Series: American Philosophy

Encountering Cavell: The Education of a Grownup

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In this chapter Russell Goodman provides an account of his own “education as a grownup.” Goodman explains the importance of “vantage points” in the work of Cavell for his own passage from Wittgenstein's fertile explanation of “seeing aspects” to Emerson's call for the intellect to yield itself to the will. Goodman admires Cavell's insight in drawing out connections between what Wittgenstein means by ‘‘grammar’’ and what Kant means by “transcendental knowledge,” while a further fruitful congruence or contiguity is found with Freud, implicit in Wittgenstein's philosophy as therapy. All three are connected in their concern with self-knowledge, and this, it turns out, is also at the heart of the motivation of ordinary language philosophy, the procedures of which are intimately bound up with a certain kind of education. Via a consideration of the theme of skepticism, Goodman returns to pragmatism but concludes with a note of regret (whose acceptance of or proximity to Cavell's aversion to calling Emerson a pragmatist remains equivocal): this is to the effect that the term has become so loosely used and burdened that there are times when it is better left behind.

Keywords: Wittgenstein; Emerson; Kant; Freud; philosophy as therapy; ordinary language philosophy; scepticism; pragmatism

Chapter.  5180 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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