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Concentric Space as a Life Principle Beyond Schopenhauer, Nietzsche and Ricoeur


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Table of Contents

1. Introduction. 2. Features of the Spatial Proto-Language of Concentric and Diametric Space. 3. Compassion and Space. 4. Rapture and Space. 5. The Spatial Background between Dionysian and Apollonian Myths. 6. Power and Space. 7. Space as Freedom in Experience. 8. Space as Movement: Eternal Recurrence beyond Homogenous Time. 9. Space Prior to Metaphor. 10. Space and Internalisation of the Other.

About the Author

Paul Downes is Associate Professor of Psychology, School of Human Development, Institute of Education, Dublin City University, Ireland. He has over 100 international peer-reviewed publications across areas of philosophy, psychology, education, law, anthropology and social policy and has given keynotes and invited presentations in 29 countries.


"Paul Downes' book is a rich meditation on how the question of being is at one level the question of well-being, and he explores this in an original and engaging way by investigating the interplay of what he calls the 'diametric' and 'concentric' space-time that structures our existence. He contends that it is 'concentric space' in particular that has been increasingly closed off in the contemporary world, and his aim is to open up this space again so that we may breathe more deeply--or in Heidegger's language, so that we may dwell more fully as mortals upon the earth under the sky in the presence of others, the divinities, and all beings and things." Richard Capobianco, Professor of Philosophy, Stonehill College, and author of Engaging Heidegger and Heidegger's Way of Being."Downes offers an excitingly nontraditional study in dialogue with mainstream authors, reading Heidegger -- Downes contends that the concentric 'is' the authentic -- along with an inventive account of space, tackling Nietzschean mountains along the way." Professor Babette Babich, Professor of Philosophy, Fordham University, New York, USA "Many scholars have examined the numerous, fascinating connections between Schopenhauer and Nietzsche on points of art, ethics, and metaphysics. Many, too, have done so with the aim of locating both figures in their shared intellectual and historical milieu. Paul Downes's Concentric Space as a Life Principle Beyond Schopenhauer, Nietzsche and Ricoeur: Inclusion of the Other, does both of these things, with an eye to philosophical ambitions of its own that make the work remarkably original. Downes is not interested only in telling us what these three key post-Kantian European figures think, but, more vitally, in getting us to identify and think about the important subtleties they themselves have left unthought, or at least unsaid.. Through a series of close and constructive readings of Schopenhauer and Nietzsche and Ricoeur too (among others like Kant, Levi-Strauss, and Heidegger to name a few), Downes undertakes a comprehensive analysis of the relation between oneself and the other, a spatial alterity ethics, as it were... Downes's book [is] enjoyably challenging. In a time when the space of discourse is increasingly less a space of reasons, a work as this, sensitive and subtle and deeply humane, is a thoughtful refuge from the shrill and shallow..."Steven DeLay, Christ Church, Oxford, Phenomenological Reviews 2020

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