Date of Publication

12-6-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Philosophy

Subject Categories

Philosophy

College

College of Liberal Arts

Department/Unit

Philosophy

Thesis Adviser

Napoleon Mabaquiao Jr.

Defense Panel Chair

Feorillo Petronillo Demeterio III

Defense Panel Member

Maxwell Felicilda
Lorenz Moises Pestin
Jeane Peracullo
Maxell Aranilla

Abstract/Summary

This dissertation addressed the main problem, “how can Heideggerian philosophy defend the meaningfulness and sense of postmodernism against the critiques of Calle, Chomsky and Sokal,” which has sub-problems: “what are the specific critiques of Calle, Chomsky, and Sokal against the postmodern,” and “what aspects of Heideggerian philosophy can defend postmodernism.” Through the second and the third chapters of this dissertation, the researcher was able to preliminarily lay down the answers for the main problem, and is now ready to conclude the whole project. The first sub-question was answered by the second chapter of this dissertation: namely, 1) concerning the information overload of postmodernity, which contained three sub-critiques, a) concerning the loss of meaning amidst the information overload, b) concerning the destruction of the foundations of moral values due to the loss of meaning, c) concerning the apathy and non-emotionalism of the postmodern individuals due their information over-stimulation; 2) concerning the rebelliousness and incredulity of the postmodern individuals; and 3) concerning the hyperreality of the symbols that otherwise unite societies into action and progress. Secondly, the two critiques of Chomsky were examined: namely, 1) concerning the foundations of postmodern moralities that are shaken to their very core because of postmodernity’s preference for provisionality, instability, performance, and fragmentation; and 2) concerning postmodernity’s deficiency due to its lack of unifying and functional theories. Thirdly, the lone critique of Sokal was concerning the bewildering multidimensionality of the postmodern individual that created negative impact to the modern epistemologies, politics, moralities, etc. The second sub-problem was answered in the second chapter by Heideggerian concepts and systems of thought that are helpful in refuting or neutralizing the critiques formulated by Calle, Chomsky, and Sokal. These are: 1) historicity, 2) the highest Idea: the Good, 3) Sorge, 4) temporality, 5) human work, 6) the nature of Dasein-as-Being-inthe-world, 7) enowning, 8) weaknesses and errors, and 9) diverse levels and categories of truths and essences. For Chomsky’s second critique, that emphasized on postmodernity’s deficiency in terms of theories as his basis in declaring that it is meaningless and senseless, the Heideggerian concepts of historicity and the highest idea: the Good were utilized as the key ideas for two counter-arguments. Heidegger’s philosophy has shown that theories might be necessary for modernity, but not necessarily for postmodernity, and that even without cognitive theories postmodern individuals can still be motivated to search for good from their experiential discovery of what goodness means for them.

For Calle’s first critique that has three sub-critiques asserted that amidst the overload of information, meaning is lost. As a consequence foundations of morality and values are shaken. Likewise, the postmodern individual has become apathetic and unemotional. Heideggerian philosophy teaches the postmodern individual to struggle and find meaning, as well as to experientially capture the idea of goodness and pursue it as a goal in one’s life. Moreover, Heideggerian philosophy gave us the consolation that science and technology have their own ways of giving channels and time to reconnect and celebrate our old bonds together and postmodern individuals can remain sympathetic and emotional in their own postmodern ways. For Calle’s second critique, that highlighted the rebelliousness and incredulity of the postmodern individual that may compromise the modern metaphysical foundations of a given society, Heidegger’s concepts of enowning and the highest idea: the Good were used in re-interpreting her critique. Hence, the same postmodern attributes of rebelliousness and incredulity when properly and sincerely pursued through deconstructive criticism could in fact provide any given society with post-metaphysical and transactional foundations. For Calle’s third critique, that made the tenuous connection between postmodernity’s flare for hyperrealism and the 9/11 terror attacks and counter attacks, Heideggerian philosophy demonstrated that conceptual diversities are things that should be accepted because they are rooted in man’s epistemic bond with his cultural context. American symbols, such as democracy and freedom, may be bordering on the stage of being hyperreal entities and metanarratives, but they remain part of the cognitive awareness of the Americans. People need to accept these cultural differences and learn to tolerate other people’s ways of life. Conversely, the Americans also need to learn from Heidegger’s philosophy to become more accepting and tolerant of other peoples’ ways of life. For Chomsky’s first critique which rendered morality and values as discourses that are devoid of any foundation due to diversities and multiplicities, Heideggerian philosophy demonstrated that postmodern morality and values are different. Postmodern discourses are as viable, functional and effective as their modern counterparts. In fact in some senses, such as in their inclusivity and urgency to address pressing contemporary issues, these postmodern discourses are shown to be better alternatives. Lastly, for Sokal’s lone critique, which dwelt on the multidimensionality of the postmodern self, the Heideggerian notions of diverse categories and levels of truths and essences were able to neutralize such critique. Sokal’s lone critique would actually fizzle out as mere description of the multidimensional entity that dovetailed perfectly with Heideggerian construct of an equally multidimensional Dasein-as-Being-in the world.

Abstract Format

html

Language

English

Format

Electronic

Electronic File Format

MS WORD

Accession Number

CDTG005141

Shelf Location

Archives, The Learning Commons, 12F Henry Sy Sr. Hall

Physical Description

1 computer optical disc. ; 4 3/4 in.

Keywords

Postmodernism

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