PL EN


2006 | 1/2(97/98) | 205-224
Article title

Rousseau, Diderot, and the birth of authenticity

Authors
Title variants
Languages of publication
PL
Abstracts
EN
This essay attempts at analysing the notion or concept of authenticity (approached as a moral postulate) in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's works. The basic subject of analysis includes: the 'Lettre รก d'Alembert sur les Spectacles' (Letter to Alembert on the Theater); 'Les Confessions' (The Confessions); and 'Les Reveries du Promeneur Solitaire' (Reveries of the Solitary Walker). These are treated as parts of a peculiar 'monologue' in which Rousseau endeavours to present himself to the reading audiences, seeks to find his 'self proper', associable with the notion of 'nature'. The tools used include, at first, a critique of theatre and mask, then, a subjective attempt at describing his own life, and, finally, an intimate meditation. Partly inspired by a deconstructionist analysis, the author argues that all three attempts end up in a failure: a triumph of mask (Letter..., The Confessions), a loss of subjectivity and the 'self' getting melted in a mechanistic order of nature (Reveries...). This is indicative of certain aporiae occurring within the very notion of 'authentic self'; in order to emphasise them even stronger, Rousseau's texts are juxtaposed with Diderot's 'Rameau's Nephew', an ironical description of subjectivity to which theatricality and guise is the proper element. The essay is part of a larger work devoted to the history of the notion of authenticity in modern thought.
Year
Issue
Pages
205-224
Physical description
Document type
ARTICLE
Contributors
author
  • M. Warchala, Uniwersytet Warszawski, Instytut Stosowanych Nauk Spolecznych, ul. Nowy Swiat 69, 00-046 Warszawa, Poland
References
Document Type
Publication order reference
Identifiers
CEJSH db identifier
06PLAAAA01383096
YADDA identifier
bwmeta1.element.894eb517-eb33-3550-a5a6-be4d187a67cc
JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.