Author: Maiatsky Michail
Michail Maiatsky (born in 1960) studied History and Philosophy in Stavropol, Rostov-on-Don and Moscow. He has worked at the universities of Fribourg and Lausanne (Switzerland) and at present is a Lecturer at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He has devoted two of his works to ancient philosophy: Platon penseur du visuel (Paris, 2005) and Controversy over Plato: the Circle of Stefan George and German University (Moscow, 2011). email@example.com
Contingent Labor — Forced Leisure. A Discussion / Logos. 2019. № 1 (128). P. 1-26
annotation: A sociologist and a philosopher conduct a freewheeling dialogue to try out different theoretical approaches (microsociology vs. post-Marxism) for identifying new phenomena within leisure while also seeking a language that properly describes them. What is the difference between idleness and leisure? How do they relate in terms of “permissibility” and social acceptance? What are the temporal characteristics that they have in common or that set them apart? Are temporal parameters a coercive factor, and how will they change with the “end of the factory whistle,” i.e. with a return to a type of social time characterized by thorough interpenetration of work and free time? What kind of temporal coercion will apply to forced leisure, which soon will become an acute problem? What types of individual and collective uses of free time are endorsed by society? How will the “reframing” of leisure time into new types of employment take place? It is likely that there will be further shifts in the relationship between leisure and work and in their opposition as “suppliers of meaning.” The importance of the act of choosing leisure time grows (and responsibility for it will also increase because leisure is clearly chosen more freely than a job, which is subject to a great many external factors). As a consequence, what new forms will coercion and alienation take with regard to leisure, and how will the temporality of this choice be structured (as a combination of many types or in rapid alternation)? Perhaps the logic of the habitus, which has been an integral component of industrial modernity, will be replaced by a different, more flexible and “omnivorous” logic. Many of these topics have already been raised during discussion of basic (or universal) income, but this is not the only relevant perspective. In any case, it is necessary to update the language of description and analysis. A lexicon that is neither purely Marxist nor grounded mainly in economics will be the most fruitful. Such a lexicon would take into account the diversity of temporal regulations, forced synchronizations, the institutional mechanics of temporal coercion, framing signals, and both local and universal temporal orders.
Keywords: idleness; leisure; temporalities; forced leisure; omnivorous leisure.
Long-Awaited Verdict / Logos. 2018. № 3 (124). P. 1-12
annotation: The author takes a personal approach to the debate surrounding the Black Notebooks by giving an account of what he owes to Heidegger and then considering how much of a shadow Heidegger’s Nazism and anti-Semitism have cast on the following legacy: A. Heidegger radically revised the philosophical vocabulary; B. stipulated that one can philosophize only by starting with oneself (Dasein); C. that Dasein must be distinguished from the “human being;” D. that one should start from Dasein to achieve Sein, or Being, in order to be in it (not merely to know it); E. that focus on Being is necessary to avoid entrapment in any sort of mun¬dane being; F. Heidegger tightly integrated his philosophy into the history of philosophy. But each of these features has an associated weakness: a. Heidegger denigrates a Latinate vocabulary (vs. the “authentic” Greek) as conducive to modernist degradation; b. he sacralized his own Dasein so that he refused to acknowledge his errors; c. distinguished Dasein from the human being, but nevertheless identified Dasein with being German; d. and Being with the German people; e. only mildly criticized certain mundane beings, such as Nazism; f. and finally, his version of the history of philosophy amounts to the con¬servative stance that “it was better before.” Heidegger had been an unequivocal and enthusiastic supporter of Nazism, but the reality of Nazism when it (temporarily) came to power did not long suit him. Hei¬degger’s disappointment with Nazism as experienced made him question Being itself: if Nazism and the Führer failed to meet his high expectations, was Being not corrupted by Machenschaft (perhaps by machinations of the Jews)? The author con¬cludes that Heidegger’s impact on philosophy will fade, although his vision of a pre-industrial utopia will increasingly appeal to urban masses exhausted by turmoil.
Keywords: Heidegger controversy; ontology; gnoseologism; Nazism; antisemitism; anti-Semitism
New Clarity in the “Heidegger Case”: A Round Table / Logos. 2018. № 3 (124). P. 205-231
annotation: The release of the Russian language translation of the first volume of Heidegger’s Black Notebooks was the occasion of a round table discussion held in Moscow at the Muzeon Park of Arts with Alexei Gloukhov, Dmitriy Kralechkin, Vitaly Kurennoy, Michail Maiatsky, and Igor Chubarov as guest speakers moderated by Valery Anashvili. In addition to the central topics of the volume, various aspects of Heidegger’s thought that now need reappraisal in light of the Black Notebooks (which are currently being translated into various languages) were also considered. Some of those aspects are purely biographical, such as the question of Heidegger’s so-called “error” and his “turn” or Kehre. Other aspects have ramifications beyond Heidegger’s views on such issues as what the “received opinons” (e.g. on anti-Semitism) at the time were and how they were dealt with by philosophers, anti-modernism, the similarities and differences in the critique of modernity from the “left” and the “right,” and the relationships between philosophy and politics or authority, anti-Semitism, etc.
Keywords: Martin Heidegger; Heidegger’s reception; anti-modernism; philosophy and power; anti-Semitism
As Long as They Call It University / Logos. 2017. № 7 (0). P. 3-16
annotation: The author considers the pointlessness of choosing between historical models of university. Instead, he proposes to find what is happening to knowledge today and whether this is relevant for higher education. Obviously, the internet and modern commu¬nication technologies affect the character of knowledge and atti¬tudes towards it. The decline of the nation-state means a change of the principal partner and client of science. Now it is the indi¬vidual customer who determines user-friendly content and form of knowledge. University bureaucracy does its best to satisfy his desires. It is this bureaucracy, not scholars-professors, who embody university now. Current trends in knowledge and uni-versity are similar in Russia and in the West (the Bologna reform as a realization of the managerial turn), despite the high degree of corruption and plagiarism in the former.
Keywords: knowledge; university; customer; managerial turn; social construction of ignorance
...sed magis amica phænomenologia / Logos. 2016. № 1 (110). P. 2-4
Husserl or Phenomenology: Fink’s Dilemma / Logos. 2016. № 1 (110). P. 104-107
Remarks / Logos. 2016. № 1 (110). P. 118-128
Towards an Archaeology of Current and Future Appropriation Practices of Philosophical Texts: Ancient Commentary / Logos. 2015. № 6 (108). P. 1-21
annotation: In the history of philosophy, it is common to disregard how one philosopher works on another philosopher’s text. “Commentary” in the broadest sense is currently considered to be any activity the reader and / or interpreter conducts with regard to the “text-object”— from marginal work to a scholarly work. The predecessors to “commentaries” were Greek hupomnêmata, or notes on the margins of scrolls. This genre evolved from serving as an explanation of the most complex passages to being a continuous, line-byline commentary. Unlike monographs and other “secondary” works dedicated to analysing primary literature, commentaries focus on the text itself instead of its meaning (from here stems the centuries-old debate between philological and philosophical commentary). The commentary also aims to limit itself to the role of serving the text, leaving out all rhetoric. To become an object of commentary, a text should be difficult and unclear enough, but also authoritative. Commentary is thus both an effect and a cause of authority. Plato and Aristotle engaged in producing commentary, and this heightened the prestige of this genre. Philosophizing and philosophical teaching centered around their commentaries for many centuries. Aristotle’s “Poetics” became a methodological roadmap for scholars in Alexandria. While it is possible that the commentary is not in fact a universal genre or an eternal genre, the transition from paper texts to online texts has resulted in new opportunities for the enrichment and differentiation of the commentary. This, in turn, forces us to reconsider the aims, principles, and methods of commenting.
Keywords: text appropriation; commentary; marginalia; teaching of philosophy; Platonism; Peripatetic tradition; Alexandrian philology
Оtium for Nobody? / Logos. 2015. № 3 (105). P. 46-50
Liberation from Work, Unconditional Income and Foolish Will / Logos. 2015. № 3 (105). P. 72-87
annotation: The article approaches the issue of the Unconditional Basic Income ) from the point of view of the phenomenon of akrasia (or incontinentia in the Latin translation). Since at least the time of the Sophists, akrasia has attracted great attention from moral thinkers. We are dealing with an akratic behaviour when one knows of the fact that one particular action is preferable in a certain situation, and nevertheless one undertakes the opposite (or simply an alternative) action. Since antiquity, this situation has changed; e. g. the good is now understood in a greater variety of ways. In this article, the author tries to question the sociо-psychologically. How would a beneficiary conceive of this particular form of income? How would (s)he interpret the expectations of society in compensation for it? There are two essential theoretical versions of the: 1) something positive and constructive will be explicitly expected; 2) nothing will be expected, and the unconditional character will be stressed: the is neither a reward, nor an advance payment for future work or for readiness to accept any work. In the first case, the temptation of an akratic reaction will be great. In the second case, there is one condition that makes the whole thing look like a utopia—that is, the condition that your activity should not be based on the expectation or goal of a salary (André Gorz). The author supposes that for millions of people, work is still a “source of meaning.” An abrupt transition from “work” to “activity” could result simply in a confirmation of their immaturity.
Keywords: akrasia; unconditional existential income; unemployment; labor work; free activity
Storytelling: from Scheherazade to Freud’s Nephew / Logos. 2015. № 3 (105). P. 177-178
God Loves Digits / Logos. 2015. № 2 (104). P. 12-13
Keywords: Digital Humanities
How to Study Humans, and to Remain One (Guy Thuillier. Introduction au métier de l’historien) / Logos. 2015. № 1 (103). P. 298-310
On the History of the Plato’s Denazifi cation in Germany / Logos. 2012. № 6 (90). P. 29-41
annotation: Th e article deals with various types of post-Nazi Plato reception in Germany. The author argues that Plato’s ‘denazifi cation’ was perturbed and complicated by K. Popper’s book ‘The Spell of Plato’, 1st volume of his famous ‘The Open Society and Its Enemies’. His liberal interpetation of Plato coincides, ex negativo, with the Nazist one. The article analyses diff erent denazifi cation
programms: the total refutation of any Nazi/totalitarian reading of Plato; the interpretation of Plato’s criticism of democracy as an endeavour to improve it; the comparison of ‘Politeia’ with totalitarian regimes of the 20th century (in favour of the former); charge against liberal criticism for, under Plato’s name, attacking the contemporary meritocratic (= aristocratic) society. The currently dominant interpretation of Plato commits a hermeneutical violence inverse to that of totalitarian reading: Plato is presented as the pleader of dialogue and persuasion, the forerunner of parliamentary democracy.
Keywords: reception, denazifi cation, hermeneutical violence, utopy, rehabilitation.
Real and imaginary untranslatabilities. Thumbing through the “Vocabulary of European Philosophies: A Dictionary of Untranslatables” (Ed. by Barbara Cassin, 2004) / Logos. 2011. № 5-6 (84). P. 13-21
annotation: Considering the unique and fairly useful “European Vocabulary of Philosophies: Lexicon of Untranslatabilities” (ed. by B. Cassin), the author points out some theoretical flaws of this ambitious philosophical and lexicographical study. Several phenomena that are analyzed in it (like misunderstanding, re-interpretation, productive misinterpretation) are not specific for translation only, but are widespread also in philosophical practice within one (national) language. Furthermore, the author scrutinizes the Russian philosophy articles and reveals some of its hidden myths and clichés.
Keywords: untranslatability, interpretation, misinterpretation, cultural relations
Real and imaginary untranslatabilities. Thumbing through the “Vocabulary of European Philosophies: A Dictionary of Untranslatables” (Ed. by Barbara Cassin, 2004)./ Logos. 2011. № 5-6 (84).
annotation: Considering the unique and fairly useful “European Vocabulary of Philosophies: Lexicon of Untranslatabilities” (ed. by B. Cassin), the author points out some theoretical fl aws of this ambitious philosophical and lexicographical study. Several phenomena that are analyzed in it (like misunderstanding, re-interpretation, productive misinterpretation) are not specifi c for translation only, but are widespread also in philosophical practice within one (national) language. Furthermore, the author scrutinizes the Russian philosophy articles and reveals some of its hidden myths and clichés.
Keywords: untranslatability, interpretation, misinterpretation, cultural relations.
Socrates the economist, or Towards a political economy of friendship / Logos. 2011. № 4 (83). P. 120-130
annotation: The article is devoted to Socrates’ economical views, a theme that has rarely been
touched upon. The author bases himself on Xenophon’s (rather than Plato’s)
works mentioning Socrates. Socrates believes it is useless to separate the question
of benefi t from the question of utility, which is, in turn, linked to the idea of the
Good. Contrary to the common depiction of a poor and self-denying Socrates,
this article portrays Socrates’ philosophical teaching and friendship in the
context of an exchange of services, without which sociality does not exist.
Keywords: Plato; Socrates; Xenophon; economy; friendship; exchange; community; idea of the Good
Akrasia in Greek Philosophy / Logos. 2011. № 4 (83). P. 193-199
Европа и ее мыслительная мускулатура: вопрос упражнения? / Logos. 2012. № 4 (88). P. 109-120