Gregory Fried, Towards a Polemical Ethics: Between Heidegger and Plato, Rowman and Littlefield, 2021, 294pp., $125.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781786610003.
Reviewed by Robert Metcalf, University of Colorado Denver
The title of Gregory Fried’s book led me to expect a study of the polemical character of ethical life, drawing on insights from both Plato and Heidegger—which makes sense, given that both thinkers have much to teach us about polemos and ‘the ethical.’ But in fact, the word, “towards,” in the title, points to something more interesting and more ambitious than what I had expected, for the book intends to lay out what the author describes as a “propaedeutic metaethics” in the precise sense of “establishing the grounds for the possibility of an ethical life, norms, and morality, as well as the customs, laws, and institutions needed to sustain such a life” (4). Such a project entails, among other things, a phenomenological account…
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