Monday, August 12, 2013

Third Earl of Shaftesbury's Rhetoric, Education & Politics

From the two quotes below it becomes obvious that Shaftesbury's influence on the Scots-Irish in general and Witherspoon in particular was immense. The emphasis on eloquence could mean that Witherspoon's understanding of Scottish philosophy was actually the closest to Shaftesbury's. It

On Shaftesbury's emphasis on Rhetoric and literary persuasion:
'Those trained in analytic philosophy continue to have trouble reading Shaftesbury, largely because he self-consciously rejects systematic philosophy and focuses more on rhetoric and literary persuasion than providing numbered premises.'
 On education (new link) in a blogpost by James Harriman-Smith:
“His work aimed at nothing other than returning philosophy to the world”: thus Lawrence Klein describes Shaftesbury’s Characteristics of Men, Manners, Opinions, Times, before going on to identify three aspects of this “philosophical worldliness”. These are: that philosophy should make people effective participants in the world, that philosophy was embedded in culture and history, and that this worldliness should have a political resonance.'

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