Reading philosopher Simon Critchley is always stimulating, so I was unable to resist buying his contribution to the OUP Short Introductions series: Continental Philosophy. In reading the introductory chapter I was immediately struck by the parallels with Gabriel Josipovici’s central thesis is What Ever Happened to Modernism?
[…] the problem for us moderns is clear: in the face of the disenchantment of nature brought about by the scientific revolution, we experience a gap between knowledge and wisdom that has the consequence of divesting our lives of meaning. The question is: can nature or indeed human selves become re-enchanted in such a way that reduces or even eliminates the meaning gap and produces some plausible conception of a good life? The dilemma seems to be intractable: on the one hand, the philosophical cost of scientific truth seems to be scientism, in which case we become beasts. On the other hand, the rejection of scientism through a new humanization of the cosmos seems to lead to obscurantism, in which case we become lunatics. Neither side of this alternative is particularly attractive. Towards the end of this book, I will try and suggest a middle path.