Ethics of Writing

By Carlo Sini
Translated by Silvia Benso & Brian Schroeder

Subjects: Phenomenology, Pragmatism, Heidegger, Analytical Philosophy
Series: SUNY series in Contemporary Italian Philosophy
Paperback : 9781438428529, 186 pages, July 2010
Hardcover : 9781438428512, 186 pages, October 2009

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Table of contents

Introduction by Silvia Benso
PART I. Logic and Writing: The Content of the Form
1. The Question
2. Writing
3. Archewriting
4. The Content of the Form
PART II. The Tradition of Thought
5. The Tradition of Philosophy
6. The Task of Thinking Practices
7. The Ethics of Thinking

First English translation of Sini’s important work on the influence of writing and the alphabet on Western rationality.


In this groundbreaking work, Carlo Sini, one of Italy's leading contemporary philosophers, brings American pragmatism to the Milan school of phenomenology. Appearing in English for the first time, this book explores the constitutive role of alphabetic writing in the emergence of dominant forms of knowledge in the Western world (philosophy, mathematics, science, and historiography). Taking stock of the contingent nature of what are held as logical truths, he offers an ethical framework for considering different ways of thinking about writing, focusing on possibilities involving "practice" as a basis for a renewal of theoretical philosophy. Such a framework, Sini argues, opens the door for more productive and ethical communication with non-Western cultures, and indeed for a reconsideration of forms of knowledge beyond mere writing.

Carlo Sini is Professor of Philosophy at Milan State University and the author of many books, including Images of Truth: From Sign to Symbol. Silvia Benso is Professor of Philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. She is the author of The Face of Things: A Different Side of Ethics and translator and coeditor (with Brian Schroeder) of Contemporary Italian Philosophy: Crossing the Borders of Ethics, Politics, and Religion, both also published by SUNY Press. Brian Schroeder is Professor of Philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. He is the coeditor (with Lissa McCullough) of Thinking through the Death of God: A Critical Companion to Thomas J. J. Altizer, also published by SUNY Press.