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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter November 9, 2021

The Exemplarity of Particulars: Arendt on Validity

Martin Blumenthal-Barby
From the journal arcadia

Abstract

When Hannah Arendt delivered her Lectures on Kant’s Political Philosophy at the New School for Social Research in 1970, she held a seminar on Kant’s Critique of Judgment to explore aspects of her lecture course in greater detail. This essay probes Arendt’s seminar notes with an eye to the concept of ‘exemplary validity,’ which is at the core of her theory of judgment. Notably, her analysis repeatedly draws on the force of examples, that is, the force of ‘exemplary validity.’ Her theorization of judgment, itself inevitably subject to her own judgment, can be understood as an enactment of and commentary on the very matter she discusses. It is not by chance but rather symptomatic that her argumentation is permeated by strategically placed examples that seek to persuade us by dint of their exemplary validity.

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Published Online: 2021-11-09
Published in Print: 2021-11-30

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