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Continental Realism and Its Discontents

Edited by Marie-Eve Morin

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10 critical essays challenge speculative realism from perspectives from German idealism to phenomenology and deconstruction

Speculative realism challenges philosophical approaches and traditions for supposedly failing to do justice to the real world. Taking this realist challenge seriously, Continental Realism and Its Discontents refuses to discard the philosophical contributions of Kant, Schelling, Merleau-Ponty, Derrida and Nancy without closer scrutiny. Instead, the contributors turn to these thinkers to meet the challenge of realism in contemporary philosophy.

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Introduction: Continental Realism – Picking Up the Pieces
Vladimir Dukić and Marie-Eve Morin

Part I: Responses and Interventions
1. Empirical Realism and the Great Outdoors: A Critique of Meillassoux
G. Anthony Bruno

2. The Ecstatic Realism of the Late Schelling
Sean J. McGrath

3. Before Infinitude: A Levinasian Response to Meillassoux’s Speculative Realism
Lee Braver

Part II: Convergences and Correctives
4. Kantian Realisms: The Noumenal, Causation, and Grounding
Allison Assiter

5. Pessimism or the Importance of Indifference, Time, and Violence in Realist Ontologies
Rick Elmore

6. Being (with) Objects
Anna Mudde

Part III: Challenges and Prospects
7. Merleau-Ponty and the Challenge of Realism, or How (Not) To Go Beyond Phenomenology
Marie-Eve Morin

8. The Radical Contingency of Temporality, Correlation, and Philosophy: Merleau-Ponty’s Indirect Ontology Contra Meillassoux’s Hyper-Anthropocentric Idealism
David Morris

9. The Realist Challenge: Thinking the Reality of Language after Deconstruction
Peter Gratton

Notes on Contributors

About the Author

Marie-Eve Morin is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Alberta.


How refreshing to read a volume that seeks to bring opposing philosophies into dialogue without the usual tribalism and self-justification. By all means read this book for its penetrating and exceptionally wide-ranging critique of Speculative Realism, but savour it also as that rarest of dishes: genuine philosophical encounter.

- Christopher Watkin, Monash University

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