Habermas pp 219-283 | Cite as

A Reply to my Critics

  • Jürgen Habermas
Part of the Contemporary Social Theory book series


That so many competent and distinguished colleagues have dealt so seriously with publications which, as I know only too well, are at best stimulating but by no means present finished thoughts is a source of both embarrassment and pleasure. For all the ambivalence, satisfaction is, to be sure, predominant. There has never been any need to complain about lack of attention among the scholarly and political public; however, this resonance often enough brings me to the painful awareness that I have apparently been unable to present my theoretical approach in a comprehensible manner or, perhaps, to awaken the hermeneutic willingness requisite for its reception. This situation has recently changed. Especially in Anglo-Saxon countries, and also in Scandinavia and Holland, for instance, I am encountering a critique that over-indulges me with careful argumentation, that unsettles me with interesting objections, and that involves me in very instructive discussions. The contributions to the present volume are an impressive case in point. I suspect that this well-informed interest could not have developed if Thomas McCarthy had not subjected my work to a penetrating analysis which, for all its criticism, represents a co-operative effort to advance the argument. I could not have wished for a fairer and more productive partner in dialogue.


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© Macmillan Publishers Limited 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jürgen Habermas

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