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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter January 19, 2022

Forgiveness as an Approach to the History of Philosophy

Yael Gazit

Abstract

In the past, Robert Brandom’s philosophy has provided fruitful grounds for the development of an approach to the history of philosophy. In A Spirit of Trust (2019), however, this approach takes a new form; one that corresponds to a shift of focus in Brandom’s philosophy, from his earlier inferentialism to its later developments in the thesis of rational recollection. This article aims to elucidate and explicate this new approach, which Brandom refers to as forgiveness. By looking into the thesis of rational recollection, the article examines the back-looking attitude that Brandom argues for and how it can be applied to past philosophy. To better understand the novelty of this approach as forgiveness, the article considers other names that Brandom ascribes to this process, which interestingly correspond to different genres in the historiography of philosophy. Lastly, the article discusses whether such a forgiving approach leaves room for criticism and mistakes.


Corresponding author: Yael Gazit, Humboldt University of Berlin, Berlin, Germany, E-mail:

Funding source: Minerva Foundation

Acknowledgment

I am very grateful to Michael Beaney, the participants of his HU colloquium, and Menachem Fisch, for their helpful comments and suggestions. I am also deeply thankful to Jeremy Wanderer, Willem deVries, Steven Levine, Ronald Loeffler, Elisa Magri, Mark Okrent, Joseph Rouse, Carl Sachs, Sally Sedgwick, Allen Speight, and Preston Stovall, for insightful discussions on A Spirit of Trust. Finally, I owe my sincere gratitude to the Minerva Stiftung for their support.

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Published Online: 2022-01-19
Published in Print: 2022-04-26

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