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dc.contributor.authorMendelson, Tobyen_US
dc.date.accessioned2014-06-16T15:58:49Z
dc.date.available2014-06-16T15:58:49Z
dc.date.issued2013en_US
dc.identifier.citationMendelson, T. (2013). Nāgārjuna’s philosophy of emptiness and political philosophy: liberty in action. PhD thesis, School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne.en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11343/39771
dc.description© 2013 Dr. Toby Mendelsonen_US
dc.description.abstractAlthough the metaphysical, soteriological, semantic and logical implications of Nāgārjuna’s philosophy of emptiness have been widely studied (and practiced) for nearly two millennia, the moral and political implications have generally been left implicit. This thesis is a study of the political implications of Nāgārjuna’s claim that persons and things are empty of svabhāva (substantial self-existence and own self-identity). The primary question I have asked is: What are the primary political implications from Nāgārjuna’s philosophy of emptiness? My primary contention is: That there are clear political implications from Nāgārjuna’s philosophy of emptiness and that these are productive of a tangible, plausible and important normative political task and orientation. Both the question and the contention are controversial, in the sense that one orthodox reading of Nāgārjuna’s philosophy is that it is not a philosophy at all, but rather, a pragmatic or soteriological endeavour to shift interlocutors out of the basic error of thinking conceptually. If Nāgārjuna is interpreted in such a way, there may be political implications of a certain kind (for example, the privileging of an anarchic, deconstructive or quietist kind of politics), but a normative political orientation is rendered impossible. I have argued the contrary thesis, on the basis of a contrary interpretation – that if Nāgārjuna is interpreted as offering a particular philosophical position, then a normative orientation is impossible to avoid. The primary argument of the thesis is to demonstrate this general point, which leads towards a formal, abstract and general normative political task, that of a collective movement from constraint to freedom. The secondary argument of the thesis is far more particular and contextual. It is that there are particular political values or goods resonant with our contemporary 21st century political context which are coherently connected to that more general normative task. These are values associated with the concepts of political liberty and equality.en_US
dc.languageengen_US
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dc.subjectNāgārjunaen_US
dc.subjectemptinessen_US
dc.subjectBuddhismen_US
dc.subjectpolitical philosophyen_US
dc.titleNāgārjuna’s philosophy of emptiness and political philosophy: liberty in actionen_US
dc.typePhD thesisen_US
melbourne.affiliationThe University of Melbourneen_US
melbourne.affiliation.departmentSchool of Historical and Philosophical Studies, Faculty of Artsen_US
melbourne.affiliation.departmentSchool of Historical and Philosophical Studies
melbourne.affiliation.facultyArts
melbourne.linkedresource.urlhttp://cat.lib.unimelb.edu.au/record=b5590831
melbourne.contributor.authorMendelson, Tobyen_US
melbourne.accessrightsOpen Access


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