ICS Calendar Title: The Politics of Forgiveness

ICS Course Code: ICS 220602 W12

Instructor: Dr. Shannon Hoff  email: shoff@icscanada.edu  416.979.2331 ext. 232

Term and Year: Tuesdays, 1:30pm-4:30pm, Winter 2012

Last Updated: March 1, 2012

Course Description

In the Phenomenology of Spirit, G.W.F. Hegel argues that the practice of forgiveness uniquely fulfils the need of our human condition, invoking it as the proper and ultimate form for human relationships to take. Our action, he argues, is always intersubjective, always “inter-action,” and in our action we are thus always transgressing upon, and being transgressed upon by, others. Addressing this mutual transgression is the fundamental experience, he argues, behind our need for establishing laws and shared systems of communication. Yet the universality of law and language fails to recognize the irreducible singularity of our experience and action, and our mutual recognition must thus ultimately take the form of forgiving each other’s irreducibly transgressive singularity. We will begin the course by exploring Hegel’s discussion of the various elements--mutual recognition, individual action, and universal law--for which forgiveness presents a kind of culminating framework. We will then explore Hannah Arendt’s understanding of forgiveness as necessary for political agency and interaction, and we will conclude by discussing Jacques Derrida’s demonstration of the essential aporias of forgiveness and the related imperative to hospitality.

Course Materials (available at the Bob Miller Book Room, 180 Bloor St. W.)

Hannah Arendt, The Human Condition (Chicago, 1998 (or 1958)) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HM211 .A7 1998]

Jacques Derrida, Margins of Philosophy, tr. Alan Bass (Chicago, 1982) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B53 .D4713]

__________, Of Hospitality, tr. Rachel Bowlby (Stanford, 2000) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B2430 .D483 D6413 2000]

__________, “On Forgiveness,” tr. Michael Hughes, in On Cosmopolitanism and Forgiveness (Routledge, 2001) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: JV6346 .D47 2001]

Jacques Derrida, “To Forgive: the Unforgivable and the Imprescriptible,” in Dooley, Caputo and Scanlon, eds., Questioning God [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BT795 .Q47 2001X]

G.W.F. Hegel, Phenomenology of Spirit, tr. A.V. Miller (Oxford, 1976) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B2928 .E5 M54 1977 c.2]

Course Requirements

Class Participation: 15%

Each course participant is required to do the reading assignment and participate in class discussions. Good participation is mindful of the contributions of others and oriented toward enhancing the experience of the group as a whole.

Presentation: 30%

Each course participant will give one presentation on a course reading, and will present (or submit) the presentation to me between five and seven days in advance. The presentation will focus on a point that we will determine together beforehand.

Research Paper: 55%

A final draft of the research paper is due on May 25th. A 100-500 word abstract of the paper is due on the 26th of March. I would also strongly encourage you to hand in an early draft of the paper, the deadline for such drafts is May 11th.

Recommended Readings

Hannah Arendt, Between Past and Future [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: D16.8 .A65]

__________, Eichmann in Jerusalem [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: DD247 .E5 A7 2006]

Seyla Benhabib, Roy Tsao, Peter Verovsek, eds., Politics in Dark Times: Encounters with Hannah Arendt [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: JC251 .A74 P66 2010]

J.M. Bernstein, “Confession and Forgiveness: Hegel’s Poetics of Action,” in Beyond Representation: Philosophy and Poetic Imagination [Robarts Library: PN49 .B49 1996X]

__________, “Conscience and Transgression: the Persistence of Misrecognition,” in Bulletin of the Hegel Society of Great Britain [McMaster University. Mills Library: B2900 .B85]

__________, “Love and Law: Hegel’s Critique of Morality,” in Social Research [Robarts Library: H1 .S53]

Richard Bernstein, “Derrida: the Aporia of Forgiveness?,” in Constellations [Robarts Library: HX3 .P832]

Hauke Brunkhorst, Solidarity: From Civic Friendship to a Global Legal Community [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HM717 .B7813 2005]

Joseph Butler, Fifteen Sermons [especially Sermon VIII and IX) [Regis Library: BX5133 .B87 F5 1970]

Judith Butler, Giving an Account of Oneself. [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BD450 .B895 2005]

Claudia Card, “Mercy,” in Philosophical Review [ROBA: B1 .P5]

David Ciavatta, Spirit, the Family, and the Unconscious in Hegel’s Philosophy [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B2948 .C54 2009 ; Robarts Library: B2948 .C54 2009X]

William E. Connolly, “Evil and the Imagination of Wholeness,” in Liberal Modernism and Democratic Individuality [VIC-Pratt Library: JC571 .L5294 1996]

Jacques Derrida, On Cosmopolitanism and Forgiveness [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: JV6346 .D47 2001]

P.E. Digeser, Political Forgiveness [Robarts Library: JA79 .D54 2001X]

Robert D. Enright and Joanna North, Exploring Forgiveness [Robarts Library: BF637 .F67 E86 1998X]

Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HV8666 .F6813 1995]

Martin Golding, “Forgiveness and Regret,” in Philosophical Forum [Robarts Library: B1 .P48]

Timothy Gorringe, God’s Just Vengeance [Robarts Library: BT263 .G67 1996X]

Trudy Govier, Forgiveness and Revenge [Robarts Library: BJ1476 .G685 2002]

Joram Graf Haber, Forgiveness [Robarts Library: BJ1476 .H33 1991]

Jean Hampton and Jeffrie Murphy, Forgiveness and Mercy [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BJ1476 .M87 1988]

H.S. Harris, Hegel’s Ladder [Robarts Library: B2929 .H34 1997 v.1-2]

Stanley Hauerwas, “Constancy and Forgiveness: the Novel as a School for Virtue,” in Notre Dame English Journal [Robarts Library: PN49 .A1 N67]

G.W.F. Hegel, “The Spirit of Christianity and Its Fate,” in Early Theological Writings [Robarts Library: B2908 .K513 1971 ; and book chapter on ICS Library Reserve Shelf]

Martin Heidegger, Being and Time (especially §§54-60) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B3279 .H48 S413 1996]

Virginia Held, Rights and Goods: Justifying Social Action [Robarts Library: JA79 .H44 1984]

Shannon Hoff, “On Law, Transgression, and Forgiveness,” in Philosophical Forum [Online through UTL Library Catalogue]

Richard Holloway, On Forgiveness [Robarts Library: BF637 .F67 H64 2002]

Stephen Houlgate and Michael Baur, eds., A Companion to Hegel [Online through UTL Library Catalogue]

Vladimir Jankélévitch, Forgiveness, tr. Andrew Kelley (Chicago, 2005) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BT795 .J313 2005X]

__________, “Should We Pardon Them? Critical Inquiry, 22 (3), 1996: 552-576 [UTL electronic journal]

Aurel Kolnai, “Forgiveness,” Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society [Trinity College Library: PER]

Christopher D. Marshall, Beyond Retribution: a New Testament Vision for Justice, Crime, and Punishment [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HV7419 .M36 2001]

Marilyn McCord-Adams, “Forgiveness: a Christian Model,” in Faith and Philosophy [ICS Library: PER]

Martha Minow, Between Vengeance and Forgiveness [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HV6322.7 .M56 1998]

Jeffrie Murphy, Getting Even: Forgiveness and Its Limits [Robarts Library: BF637 .F67 M87 2004X]

Martha Nussbaum, “Equity and Mercy,” in Philosophy and Public Affairs [Robarts Library: BJ1 .P5]

Mark Osiel, Mass Atrocity, Collective Memory, and the Law [Robarts Library: JX5433 .O83 1997X]

Paul Ricoeur, Memory, History, Forgetting, tr. Kathleen Blamey and David Pellauer [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BD 181.7 .R5313 2006]

John Russon, Reading Hegel’s Phenomenology [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: B2929 .R86 2004 ; Trinity College Library: B2929 .R86 2004]

Mark Tunick, Punishment: Theory and Practice [Robarts Library: K5103 .T86 1992]

Desmond Tutu, No Future Without Forgiveness (Random House, 1999) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BR1450 .T88 1999]

Miroslav Volf, Exclusion and Embrace: a Theological Exploration of Identity, Otherness, and Reconciliation [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BV4509.5 .V65 1996]

__________, Free of Charge: Give and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BV4647 .G45 V65 2005]

Nicholas Wolterstorff, “Does Forgiveness Undermine Justice?,” in God and the Ethics of Belief [Robarts Library: BR100 .G62 2005]

Elisabeth Young-Bruehl, Hannah Arendt: For Love of the World [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: JC251 .A74 Y68 2004]

Course Schedule

January 10           Introduction

January 17           Hegel, Phenomenology, Independence and Dependence of Self-Consciousness. The need for recognition, and its inadequate forms, §§178-196

January 24           Hegel, Phenomenology, Independence and Dependence of Self-Consciousness. Equal recognition and the conditions of its enactment, §§178-196

January 31           Hegel, Phenomenology, The True Spirit: the Ethical Order. The need for law; the limits of law, §§436-476

February 7           Hegel, Phenomenology, Conscience. The ‘beautiful soul’, evil and its forgiveness. The need for conscience; its importance and its problems, §§632-658

February 14         Hegel, Phenomenology, Conscience. The ‘beautiful soul’, evil and its forgiveness. The role of forgiveness and the fulfilment of recognition, §§659-671

February 21         READING BREAK: NO CLASS

February 28         Arendt, The Human Condition, Chapters I and II. The human condition; the public, private, and social, pp. 7-13, 22-28, 38-73

March 6               Arendt, The Human Condition, Chapter V. The nature of action, pp. 175-220

March 13             Arendt, The Human Condition, Chapter V. Forgiving and promising, pp. 220-247

March 20             Derrida, “Différance,” “Signature Event Context,” in Margins of Philosophy. Meaning as différance and iteration; deconstruction

March 27             Derrida, “To Forgive,” in Questioning God. The aporias of forgiveness

April 3                  Derrida, “On Forgiveness,” in On Cosmopolitanism and Forgiveness. Instituting forgiveness. Paper Abstract Due

April 10                Derrida, Of Hospitality. Instituting hospitality

May 11                 First Draft of Paper Due (optional)

May 15                 Final Paper Due