Trim: 6 x 9
978-1-4985-1920-5 • Hardback • December 2015 • $116.00 • (£89.00)
978-1-4985-1922-9 • Paperback • July 2017 • $54.99 • (£42.00)
978-1-4985-1921-2 • eBook • December 2015 • $52.00 • (£40.00)
Jae-seong Lee is professor of English specializing in critical theory at Pusan National University.
CHAPTER I Postmodernism through Levinasian Ethics to Buddhist Philosophy
CHAPTER II Levinasian Ethics and Other Postmodern Ethical Theories
CHAPTER III Positivity toward Infinity: Levinas, Buddhism, and Literature
CHAPTER IV Searching for a Breakthrough to the No Self or Real I: Ch’an/Seon/Zen, Levinasian Ethics, and Literary Reading
CHAPTER V A Process of Awakening in a Religious Narrative: The Book of Job
CHAPTER VI Gothic Excess as the Trace of the Other or the Real I: A Levinasian and Buddhist Approach to the Terror Mood of Dracula
CHAPTER VII Desire for the Infinity of the Other and the Excess of the Terror Mood in Frankenstein
Conclusion: Time for the True Encounter between East and West
Lee diligently and methodically surveys the major views in postmodern ethics against the background of traditional Western philosophy, i.e., modern metaphysics of presence. This involves an erudite and informed exposition of the main French postmodern views of Levinas, Derrida, Lyotard, Deleuze and Nancy, as well as their German predecessors such as Kant, Hegel, Husserl and Heidegger…. As should be clear from our discussion so far, we can find much that is of interest in this well-executed monograph. Its arguments are of a high standard and its content is rich. It is a fitting contribution to an interdisciplinary perspective on philosophy, religion and literature...This books explores a fascinating topic on a fundamentally sound project and I recommend it to whoever is interested in comparative philosophy, Asian philosophy, East-West dialogues as well as literary critics. I also look forward to a sequel to this book in the future.
— Journal of World Philosophies
The true encounters between East and West have been missing due to the West’s miscomprehension of the most profound fundamentality of humanity, which has comprised Eastern philosophy and culture. Lee proposes, explores exquisitely in detail, and proves that the missed encounters can be corrected through our understanding of genuine transcendence, which lies beyond, and also constitutes, phenomena and ontologicality of life—through the notion of Infinity in postmodern ethics in the West and the true self or Emptiness in Buddhism (and Tao in Taoism).... Lee’s study of human suffering in the Book of Job and of the Gothic sublime in Dracula and Frankenstein surpasses by far other critical writings on those and other texts of these kinds. Of all the books I’ve read, this is absolutely the most thorough study of both Eastern and Western thoughts, and one can predict that at least for years to come, we would not be able to find a book that explores the encounter between East and West in this depth in the light of the merging of postmodern ethics, Mahāyāna Buddhism, and literature.
— Criticism and Theory
This impressive book will appeal to all those interested in comparative philosophy, postmodernism, Buddhist philosophy, metaphysics, literary criticism, and ethical issues. The book is very ambitious because the author wants to expand postmodern critical theory by using for the most part the Zen Buddhist understanding of emptiness to accomplish his goal. With the philosophy of Levinas influencing the discussion, a focus on the role of the other plays a major role in the work, an emphasis that is insightfully and creatively presented with discussions of Job, Dracula, and Frankenstein in chapters 5 through 7. The book is worth reading just for these chapters. In short, Lee’s admirable book is a welcome addition to comparative philosophy and ethics.
— Carl Olson
• Winner, 7th Wonhyo Buddhist Academic Award