Exemplarity and Singularity: Thinking through Particulars in Philosophy, Literature, and Law, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Exemplarity and Singularity

Thinking through Particulars in Philosophy, Literature, and Law, 1st Edition

Edited by Michele Lowrie, Susanne Lüdemann


266 pages

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Paperback: 9781138241749
pub: 2017-06-07
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pub: 2015-05-05
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This book pursues a strand in the history of thought – ranging from codified statutes to looser social expectations – that uses particulars, more specifically examples, to produce norms. Much intellectual history takes ancient Greece as a point of departure. But the practice of exemplarity is historically rooted firmly in ancient Roman rhetoric, oratory, literature, and law – genres that also secured its transmission. Their pragmatic approach results in a conceptualization of politics, social organization, philosophy, and law that is derived from the concrete. It is commonly supposed that, with the shift from pre-modern to modern ways of thinking – as modern knowledge came to privilege abstraction over exempla, the general over the particular – exemplarity lost its way. This book reveals the limits of this understanding. Tracing the role of exemplarity from Rome through to its influence on the fields of literature, politics, philosophy, psychoanalysis and law, it shows how Roman exemplarity has subsisted, not only as a figure of thought, but also as an alternative way to organize and to transmit knowledge.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Michèle Lowrie and Susanne Lüdemann, I. The Practice of Theory: A Historical Reminder, 2. Hans Lipps, Instance, Example, Case, and the Relationship of the Legal Case to the Law, 3. Bernhard Waldenfels, For Example, 4. Anselm Haverkamp, Equivalence Unbalanced – Metaphor, Case, and Example – from Aristotle to Derrida, 5. Eva Geulen, Without Example: Adorno, II. The Roman Practice of Exemplarity, 6. Rebecca Langlands, Roman Exemplarity: Mediating between General and Particular, 7. Matthew Roller, Between Unique and Typical: Senecan Exempla in a List, 8. Melanie Möller, Exemplum and Exceptio: Building Blocks for a Rhetorical Theory of the Exceptional Case, 9. Clifford Ando, Exemplum, Analogy, and Precedent in Roman Law, 10. John P. McCormick, Machiavelli’s Agathocles: From Criminal Example to Princely Exemplum, III. Exemplarity / Singularity, 11. Peter Goodrich, The Exampleless Example: Of the Infinite Particularities of Early Modern Common Law, 12. Christiane Frey, Bacon’s Bee: the Physiognomy of the Singular, 13. David Martyn, The Temper of Exemplarity: Werther’s Horse, 14. Robert Morrissey, Stendhal: Julien Sorel in the Footsteps of Napoleon, 15. Paul Fleming, Beside Oneself: Parapraxis as a Paradigm of Everyday Life (Freud)

About the Editors

Michèle Lowrie is Professor of Classics at the University of Chicago; Susanne Lüdemann is Professor of Languages and Literatures at the Ludwig-Maximilians University, Munich;

About the Series

Discourses of Law

This successful and exciting series seeks to publish the most innovative scholarship at the intersection of law, philosophy and social theory. The books published in the series are distinctive by virtue of exploring the boundaries of legal thought. The work that this series seeks to promote is marked most strongly by the drive to open up new perspectives on the relation between law and other disciplines. The series has also been unique in its commitment to international and comparative perspectives upon an increasingly global legal order. Of particular interest in a contemporary context, the series has concentrated upon the introduction and translation of continental traditions of theory and law.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Ancient / Rome
LAW / General
LAW / Jurisprudence
LAW / Legal History
LITERARY CRITICISM / Ancient & Classical
LITERARY CRITICISM / Semiotics & Theory
PHILOSOPHY / Movements / Phenomenology