Emmanuel Renault

The Phases of the French Reception of Critical Theory

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Keywords: Critical Theory; Reception; Critical Marxism; Habermas; Honneth.

After having explained why the reception of the critical theory was so late in France, this article distinguishes three stages of the reception. In the first one (1974-1986), centered on Adorno and Horkheimer, the discussion is organized by the possibility of a critical Marxism. In the second stage (1986-1997), the main question at issue is that of the discontinuity of Habermas' theory with the very idea of a critical theory of society. The third stage is still going on (1998-). Mainly inspired by Honneth, it gave rise to various research programs (about the history of critical theory, about recognition, about alienation and social experience).

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