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The Philosophers' Gift – Reexamining Reciprocity - Fordham Scholarship Online
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The Philosophers' Gift: Reexamining Reciprocity

Marcel Hénaff


When it comes to giving, philosophers love to be the most generous. For them, every form of reciprocity is tainted by commercial exchange. In recent decades, such thinkers as Derrida, Levinas, Henry, Marion, Ricoeur, Lefort, and Descombes, have made the gift central to their work, haunted by the requirement of disinterestedness. As an anthropologist as well as a philosopher, the author of this book worries that philosophy has failed to distinguish among various types of giving. This book returns to Mauss to reexamine these thinkers through the anthropological tradition. Reciprocity, rather tha ... More

Keywords: gift giving, commercial exchange, anthropological tradition, alliance, reciprocity, disinterestedness, ceremonial giving, symbolism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780823286478
Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2020 DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823286478.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Marcel Hénaff, author