Response to Jeff Malpas and Nick Malpas
“When it comes to political deliberation, as Richard Rorty used to say, “philosophy is a good servant but a bad master.” But how can philosophy stop being a master or guide? Isn’t this inevitable when it comes to ethical or religious deliberations? One of the great lessons of the late American thinker was that if you took care of solidarity, contingency, and freedom, “truth will take care of itself.” In sum, truth should not come first, but rather second or even last among our philosophical concerns. But as the epigraph by George Orwell in Jeff and Nick Malpas’ contribution indicates (“In a time of universal deceit – telling the truth is a revolutionary act”) truth for them is vital. It should not simply come first; it must also be a core concept without which hermeneutics cannot operate. This is why from the start they ask whether “a politics animated by a hermeneutic sensibility [can] really do without truth as Vattimo and Zabala claim?” In the limited space we have we will recall why truth must be overcome and comment on two other issues they raise: the significance of dialogue and Wikileaks revelations.