1st Edition

After Life Recent Philosophy and Death

Edited By Rona Cohen, Ruth Ronen Copyright 2023

    Dreams and fantasies of immorality date back to the first human being who was expelled from the Garden of Eden and fell into time, as Augustine recounts. Falling into time, into mortality, living with the consciousness of death and the decline of the body, bear a terrifying—and yet for some pacifying—burden that comes with the weight of being human. Today, with the advancement of technology, accompanied by the emergence of trends such as posthumanism and transhumanism, the idea of overcoming death is presented as no longer a mere fantasy, but a legitimate discursive stance. While death is often seen as the Muse of philosophy, what would it mean (philosophically and psychically) to live in a world where death is no longer necessary? After Life: Recent Philosophy and Death is a collection of 11 essays addressing the place of death and its denial from a philosophical, psychoanalytic and literary perspectives. This collection offers contemporary and fresh insights on these timely questions. It was originally published as a special issue of Angelaki.

    Introduction—After Life: Recent Philosophy and Death

    Rona Cohen and Ruth Ronen

    Death as a Limit to Philosophical Knowledge

    1. Scandalous Death

    Jean-Luc Nancy

    Challenges to Death: Undying

    2. The Undying

    Galili Shahar

    3. The Second Death

    Alenka Zupančič

    Challenges to the Life/Death Division

    4. Jean-Luc Nancy’s Ethics of Finitude

    Marie-Eve Morin

    5. The Affirmation of Death

    Ruth Ronen

    6. To Live and Die in History

    Joseph Cohen and Raphael Zagury-Orly

    Heidegger: With and Beyond

    7. Being Toward Death (That Has Already Happened)

    Rona Cohen

    8. Making Sense with Death: A Response to Heidegger

    Hagi Kenaan and Yaron Senderowicz

    9. Being, Death, and Machination: Thinking Death with and beyond Heidegger

    Daniela Vallega-Neu

    The Socio-Political Discourse of Death

    10. The Antinomy of Death: Ernst Bloch and Theodor W. Adorno on Utopia and Hope

    Hent de Vries

    11. Dying One’s Own Death: Freud with Rilke

    Étienne Balibar


    Rona Cohen teaches philosophy at Tel Aviv University, Israel. She is the author of many articles on Jean-Luc Nancy, Kant, Lacan, and the problem of the body in philosophy. Her areas of interest include continental philosophy, aesthetics, psychoanalysis, and philosophy of death.

    Ruth Ronen is Professor of Philosophy at Tel Aviv University, Israel, currently head of the School of Philosophy, Linguistics and Science Studies. Her areas of research are the philosophy of art, psychoanalysis and aesthetics, psychoanalytic thought (Freud and Lacan) and possible worlds (as interdisciplinary concept).