“Roundtable on David Mazella’s The Making of Modern Cynicism”
Maureen Harkin, Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd Portland OR 97202; Tel: (503) 517-7939; Fax: (503) 777-7769;
The proposed roundtable on David Mazella’s important new book
The Making of Modern Cynicism (2007) is designed to initiate an interdisciplinary discussion of the concept of cynicism in eighteenth-century French and English writings. In tracing the evolution of cynicism from Diogenes to seventeenth- and eighteenth-century incarnations (Hobbes, La Rochefoucauld, Chesterfield, Rousseau) and beyond, Professor Mazella’s cultural and literary history shows how the cynic develops from ascetic philosopher to a misanthropic figure “whose faded belief or curdled trust had left him unfit for attachments to others.” This book connects works (and approaches) across traditional national and disciplinary lines. Hence the format proposed is five participants, one each from the disciplines of French, English, Political Science, History, and Philosophy, each giving a ten-minute paper/discussion dealing with an aspect of the book and developing its propositions in relation to work in the different disciplines.
By the way, ASECS is planning a few other sessions too: click here for the CFP.
[links fixed by Dave]