Monday, November 9, 2015

O'Regan: Scotus the Nefarious

The following is a quotation from an article in the Newman-Scotus Reader:

Cyril O'Regan, "Scotus the Nefarious: Uncovering Genealogical Sophistications," p. 637-38.

This Essay has provided a sketch of what amounts to a montage of negative constructions of Scotus which do not evince serious engagement with his thought and in fact discourage it (a) by suggesting that it is fatally flawed from the ground up and (b) implicating it in lines of modern discourse which are either demonstrated or assumed to be pernicious. My aim has not been so much to defend Scotus' actual positions as to protest against the apriorism of each of these individual schemes and their cumulative ideological effect which is to make impossible a hearing of what Scotus has to say.  We are talking here about procedural fairness denied a thinker, but we are also talking about the way in which superficial engagements with a thinker's thought and superficial readings of the history of effects compromises the claims of the discourses being supported and in the process also serve to undermine the very enterprise of genealogy.


Although indirectly, the essay is a form of plea for the unaligned for opening up the plurality of the tradition This was the instinct of Gilson when he wrote his book on Scotus over sixty years ago. The fact that the instinct gets compromised in the performance is hardly unimportant, but it is not constitutive. What is needed is another Gilson in the very new situation, a new century with more derogatory discourses, a new century in which scholarship has considerably changed the textual landscape what belongs to the historical Scotus and what does not, a new century in which while there is much highly technical work done on Scotus, there is no book that takes a comprehensive look at the work of Scotus and shows its comprehensiveness, its seriousness, and its beauty.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Happy Feast of Scotus!

Enjoy the day. Here's a link to some interesting reflections, including a paper on Scotus and reductive physicalism.