Given World and Time

Temporalities in Context
$95.00 / €85.00 / £75.00
Publication date: 
376 pages

The interconnections of time with historical thought and knowledge have come powerfully to the fore since the 1970s. An international group of scholars, from a range of fields including literary theory, history of ideas, cultural anthropology, philosophy, intellectual history and theology, philology, and musicology, address the matter of time and temporalities.

The volume’s essays, divided into four main topical groups question critically the key problem of context, connecting it to the problem of time. Contexts, the essays suggest, are not timeless. Time and its contexts are only partly “given” to us: to the primordial donations of time and world correspond our epistemic, moral, and practical modes of receiving what has been granted. The notion of context may have radically different parameters in different historical, cultural, and disciplinary situations.

Topics include the deep antiquity, and the timeless time of eternity, as well as formal philosophies of history and the forms of histories implicit in individual and community experience. The medium specific use of time and history are examined with regard to song, image, film, oral narration, and legal discourse.

Preface and Acknowledgments

Sorin Antohi, Tyrus Miller Foreword

I. Temporal Figures: Citatations, Images, Narratives

1. Stefan M. Maul Walking Backwards into the Future: The Conception of Time in the Ancient Near East
2. Karen Bassi Epic Remains: Seeing and Time in the Odyssey
3. Ruth HaCohen Intricate Temporalities: The Transfiguration of Proper and ‘Improper’ Sounds from Christian to Jewish Environments
4. Lászlo Kontler Time and Progress – Time as Progress. Enlightenment Perceptions

II. History and Cosmos

5. Aziz Al-Azmeh God’s Chronography and Dissipative Time: Vaticinium ex eventu in Classical and Medieval Muslim Apocalyptic Traditions
6. Moshe Idel Kabbalistic Interpretations of the Concept of Jubilee
7. Jonathan Beecher Fourier and the Saint-Simonians on the Shape of History
8. Wai-Chee Dimock Off-Center Periodization: Emerson in Islamic Time
9. Sorin Antohi Cosmos vs. History: Time in Ethnic Ontologies
10. Tyrus Miller Eternity No More: Benjamin and the Eternal Return
11. Karl Clausberg A Microscope for Time: What Benjamin and Klages, Einstein and the Movies Owe to Distant Stars

III. Time, Culture and Politics

12. Richard Terdiman Taking Time: Temporal Representations and Cultural Politics
13. Friedrich Jaeger The Concept of Modern Times
14. Maria Todorova The Trap of Backwardness: Modernity, Temporality, and the Study of Eastern European Nationalism
15. Costica Bradatan A Time of Crisis, A Crisis of (the Sense of) Time: The Political production of Time in Communism and its relevance for the Postcommunist Debate
16. Lisa Rofel Hetero-Temporalities of Post-Socialism

IV. Life/Times

17. Harald Welzer The Social Genesis of Time in Early Ontogeny
18. Britta Duelke Quoting from the Past or Dealing with Temporality
19. Catalin Partenie Searching for Answers You Are Never Going to Get: Platonic Immortality Revisited
20. David Hoy The Time of Our Lives

V. Afterword

21. Jörn Rusen Making Sense of Time. Towards a Universal Typology of Conceptual Foundations of Historical Consciousness