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Reason and Commitment Class 5

laslett 1956 death of political philosophy berlin

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Unformatted text preview: nciple:“the meaning of statement is the method of its verification”. Thus only two kinds of statement genuinely meaningful:  ­  ­ logical, i.e. tautological (“a = a”) empirical (“Gadhafi is dead”, “litmus paper changes colour in acid”) ! The statements of political philosophy, being neither formal (logical) nor empirical, are thus regarded as meaningless ! ! Laslett (1956): death of political philosophy Berlin (1960): “Does political theory still exist?” High politics and “the cult of fact” Lewis Namier Geoffrey Elton (1888 ­1960) (1921 ­1994) The Namierite approach to history  ­ “Thecultoffact”  ­ “High politics”  ­ Contempt for political philosophy, distrust of “ideologies” (i.e. non ­factual statements)  ­ Suspicion of published texts (e.g. intentionally public, accessible doctrines): the historian’s task to comb the archives for the “secret springs of public actions” R.G. Collingwood (1889 ­1943) ! “The history of political theory is not the history of different answe...
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