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Some books are well worth reading and Stephen Toulmin’s books, ‘Cosmopolis’ and ‘Return to Reason’ are certainly two of these. They are. In Cosmopolis, Stephen Toulmin initially gives a series of proposed dates for the origin of modernity (see p. 5). Proposed dates: Gutenberg and the. An attempt to reevaluate the intellectual beginnings and basis of modernism and, in so doing, to provide the next century with a more.

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They are all based on events like the Protestant Reformation, and European philosophers responding to the Reformation, and so cosjopolis is ridiculous to apply them to China.

He goes on, “age-old traditions are sometimes conjured into existence long after the event, and the circumstances of their creation throw as much light on the times in which they were invented and accepted as they do on the times to which they ostensibly refer.

Mies van der Rohep. So, they might ask, What is really new here? This entry has no external links. The American Revolution Toulmin makes much of his thesis that modernism had two intellectual origins.

Brian O’C Leggett

Sincephilosophers have returned from raptures of logic to these human, contextual concerns. Whatever else such a law might modernoty, it is, in virtue of being a principle of reason, universally valid. From on, Toulmin discovers, the second group hidfen among intellectuals who, amidst a background of religious strife, sought to erase the earlier emphasis on human ambiguity and comprehensive rational theories of society.

Much of Toulmin’s claim to originality depends on his convincing the reader that the 17th century has until recently been widely perceived as the source of intellectual modernism. May 24, Homo rated it it was amazing.


Books by Stephen Toulmin. Toulmin on the emergance of the nation state: Toulmin’s argument evokes the classical dispute between rhetoric and philosophy.

My respect for such a law is thus not qualified: Toulmin questions why these assumptions carried weight when and for whom they did. The importance of historical context.

The Rational and the Reasonable. Toulmin wants to take the best aspects of modernity and counteract them with a return to the Renaissance humanism of thinkers like Michel de Montaigne. Specifically, Toulmin maps a shift from pre fascination with rhetoric to a post obsession with logic, from case law and case ethics to universal moral theology, from ethnographic accounts of the local to abstract model of how societies ought to run, from timely application to the matter at hand to a timeless truths.

Facing the Future Again.

Thus for him the Renaissance was the end of the Medieval period, not the beginning of the modern. Toulmin rightly wonders which parts we should erase from the whiteboard as even the French Revolution left some institutions and traditions in place.

He was a former student of Wittgenstein who made his name with the influential “anti-logic book” as Strawson called it “The Uses Of Arguments”, which first drew kf to how real debates function in dimensions beyond simple battles between alternative sets of propositions and their formal entailments.

Ronald de Sousa, Stephen Toulmin, Cosmopolis: The Hidden Agenda of Modernity – PhilPapers

The Toulmin Method Exploration and Controversy: Then we have an idea oc a duty that we cannot rationally opt out of. Stephen Toulmin confronts that agenda—its illusions and its consequences for our present and future world. The years after the Second World War saw the dominance of discrete nation-states dying into transnational realities. It opened my eyes to seeing philosophical, cultural and scientific theories in context -i.


STEPHEN TOULMIN: Cosmopolis: The Hidden Agenda of Modernity

Faced with abstract, universal, timeless theoretical propositions, they saw no sufficient basis in experience, either for asserting, or denying them. Toulmin suggests that the 17th century actually witnessed a restriction of rationality, from an Aristotelian interest in practical, instantiated science to a Platonic devotion to abstracted theory.

The globalizing world may require a brand new theory of the state and a renewed theory of freedom and democracy in a situation in which the nation-state, although has not disappeared and surely will not disappear, but nevertheless becomes weaker and weaker in its confrontation with new global political entities such as e.

At the Creation, God combined natural objects into stable systems. Macintyre – – Scm Press.


Viewed together, these moves may be described as a counter- revolution, undoing the gains of Renaissance humanism. Immanuel Kant and the universality of reason. In a society where the expert is dominant, Stephen Toulmin raises the interesting question of how issues can be dealt with in the public domain for all our benefits in a world where issues have become more and more complex.