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In his native Italy Augusto Del Noce is regarded as one of the preeminent political thinkers and philosophers of the period after the Second World War. The Crisis of Modernity makes available for the first time in English a selection of Del Noce's essays and lectures on the cultural history of the twentieth century. Del Noce maintained that twentieth-century history must b In his native Italy Augusto Del Noce is regarded as one of the preeminent political thinkers and philosophers of the period after the Second World War. The Crisis of Modernity makes available for the first time in English a selection of Del Noce's essays and lectures on the cultural history of the twentieth century. Del Noce maintained that twentieth-century history must be understood specifically as a philosophical history, because Western culture was profoundly affected by the major philosophies of the previous century such as idealism, Marxism, and positivism. Such philosophies became the secular, neo-gnostic surrogate of Christianity for the European educated classes after the French Revolution, and the next century put them to the practical test, bringing to light their ultimate and necessary consequences. One of the first thinkers to recognize the failure of Marxism, Del Noce posited that this failure set the stage for a new secular, technocratic society that had taken up Marx’s historical materialism and atheism while rejecting his revolutionary doctrine. Displaying Del Noce's rare ability to reconstruct intellectual genealogies and to expose the deep metaphysical premises of social and political movements, The Crisis of Modernity presents an original reading of secularization, scientism, the sexual revolution, and the history of modern Western culture.


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In his native Italy Augusto Del Noce is regarded as one of the preeminent political thinkers and philosophers of the period after the Second World War. The Crisis of Modernity makes available for the first time in English a selection of Del Noce's essays and lectures on the cultural history of the twentieth century. Del Noce maintained that twentieth-century history must b In his native Italy Augusto Del Noce is regarded as one of the preeminent political thinkers and philosophers of the period after the Second World War. The Crisis of Modernity makes available for the first time in English a selection of Del Noce's essays and lectures on the cultural history of the twentieth century. Del Noce maintained that twentieth-century history must be understood specifically as a philosophical history, because Western culture was profoundly affected by the major philosophies of the previous century such as idealism, Marxism, and positivism. Such philosophies became the secular, neo-gnostic surrogate of Christianity for the European educated classes after the French Revolution, and the next century put them to the practical test, bringing to light their ultimate and necessary consequences. One of the first thinkers to recognize the failure of Marxism, Del Noce posited that this failure set the stage for a new secular, technocratic society that had taken up Marx’s historical materialism and atheism while rejecting his revolutionary doctrine. Displaying Del Noce's rare ability to reconstruct intellectual genealogies and to expose the deep metaphysical premises of social and political movements, The Crisis of Modernity presents an original reading of secularization, scientism, the sexual revolution, and the history of modern Western culture.

30 review for The Crisis of Modernity

  1. 5 out of 5

    Fabrício Tavares De Moraes

    Meus ensaios sobre esta e outras obras de Del Noce: https://cultura.estadao.com.br/blogs/... https://cultura.estadao.com.br/blogs/... Meus ensaios sobre esta e outras obras de Del Noce: https://cultura.estadao.com.br/blogs/... https://cultura.estadao.com.br/blogs/...

  2. 4 out of 5

    Eric

    Del Noce says nothing radically new, but speaks with great clarity as to the philosophical assumptions and goals of modernity, scientism, and "revolution." The book is a series of reprinted essays, causing the chapters to be somewhat repetitive. But this allows his arguments to be more readily absorbed and retained. Most of the essays date from late sixties to 1970 and would reflect the European (Italian) outlook from that time (soon after the student riots of 1968, Student Riots, May 1968). Tho Del Noce says nothing radically new, but speaks with great clarity as to the philosophical assumptions and goals of modernity, scientism, and "revolution." The book is a series of reprinted essays, causing the chapters to be somewhat repetitive. But this allows his arguments to be more readily absorbed and retained. Most of the essays date from late sixties to 1970 and would reflect the European (Italian) outlook from that time (soon after the student riots of 1968, Student Riots, May 1968). Though now dated in Europe, his arguments have current relevancy in the U.S. Of most significance is his view that the advocates of modernity, or scientism, or revolution, (also called progressivism, “affluent” or “technological” or “permissive” society by Del Noce), (1) advocate a "new man" cut off from all prior tradition, morality, cultural and philosophical restraints, (2) that science has the only true knowledge, and (3) that Christians can believe what they want, but are not permitted to challenge the scientistic world view in the public forum. Del Noce makes clear the actual dichotomy between the scientistic world view and the Christian world view. Though terminology of these competing views is similar, the presuppositions and goals of the two views are opposed in fact. Del Noce speaks as a cultural Catholic, Thomist, Platonist, and accepts transcendental moral norms. Interestingly, he also classifies Puritans as a new form of Gnostics. But, his main value is in making it easy to understand how profound the change has been in the views of the academic elites towards the notions of tradition, morals, and truth.

  3. 4 out of 5

    The American Conservative

    Few of us have time to read serious books these days. Fewer still have the patience—or the discipline—to engage in the kind of rigorous philosophical analysis needed to understand the roots of the modern crisis. Rare indeed is the individual who can penetrate into deeper truths and reveal the underlying assumptions and conceptual distortions that obscure our view of social and political reality. The Italian philosopher Augusto Del Noce (1910-89) was just such an individual. Considered one of the Few of us have time to read serious books these days. Fewer still have the patience—or the discipline—to engage in the kind of rigorous philosophical analysis needed to understand the roots of the modern crisis. Rare indeed is the individual who can penetrate into deeper truths and reveal the underlying assumptions and conceptual distortions that obscure our view of social and political reality. The Italian philosopher Augusto Del Noce (1910-89) was just such an individual. Considered one of the most important political thinkers of postwar Italy, his works have escaped the attention of most non-Italian-speaking scholars. But in The Crisis of Modernity, Carlo Lancellotti, a mathematics professor at City University of New York, has carefully selected and translated 12 essays and lectures by Del Noce. For those interested in rigorous conservative critiques of modernity, this collection offers something exotic and new. http://www.theamericanconservative.co...

  4. 5 out of 5

    JP McLane

    A heavy philosophical read. Del Noce is a master at taking ideas to their logical end. This collection of his work is so relevant for today as many of the ideas he explores are currently of full display. If one wants a deeper insight into Marxism, neo Gnosticism and why our society is in the state it is, this is the book for you.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nathan Duffy

    Wrote a review of 'The Crisis of Modernity' for Thermidor magazine here: http://thermidormag.com/augusto-del-n... Wrote a review of 'The Crisis of Modernity' for Thermidor magazine here: http://thermidormag.com/augusto-del-n...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Joel Zartman

    There are a lot of insights in this book, many things explained in fundamental ways. The most fundamental argument is that we generally believe we are trapped in our moment, cut off from any metaphysical permanence and guidance. The greatest problems we face are rooted in that false belief, and del Noce's essays endeavor to demonstrate how. That is the crisis of modernity. In his own way, by addressing related topics, del Noce is arguing what Richard Weaver did a few decades earlier. There are th There are a lot of insights in this book, many things explained in fundamental ways. The most fundamental argument is that we generally believe we are trapped in our moment, cut off from any metaphysical permanence and guidance. The greatest problems we face are rooted in that false belief, and del Noce's essays endeavor to demonstrate how. That is the crisis of modernity. In his own way, by addressing related topics, del Noce is arguing what Richard Weaver did a few decades earlier. There are those to whom Weaver doesn't appeal who will perhaps listen to del Noce instead. He is very illuminating on anything he assays in his essays.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mark O'mara

    A challenging read but not difficult. Rewards slow read & reflection. Genuinely thought provoking and refreshing to take in the philosophical perspective on modernity & political thought from an Italian professor of the close post war European era. I took my time in order for the ideas to sink in and found it a very stimulating read. Among other things it elegantly rips apart the cancer that is Marxism.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Ted Newell

    Eye opening historical assessments of the ground motives of modern European and Western society. Fascism is inverted Marxism, for instance. Read what he means. Why social justice movements are what they are, Del Noce helps one to see; part of the currently operative religious drive of the West. An indispensable supplement to Voegelin and George Grant (d. 1989).

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gerald F. Rauch

  10. 4 out of 5

    S.C. Hickman

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ken W

  12. 5 out of 5

    Marie Shuzhen

  13. 4 out of 5

    He Li

  14. 4 out of 5

    Joseph

  15. 5 out of 5

    Bill

  16. 5 out of 5

    Neha

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lee Wakeman

  18. 5 out of 5

    Will

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mliccione

  20. 4 out of 5

    Bryan Baise

  21. 5 out of 5

    Caiogl

  22. 5 out of 5

    John Schneider

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rob

  24. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Beck

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

  26. 4 out of 5

    Johan Erlandsson

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dan Yingst

  28. 4 out of 5

    Francis X. Maier

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

  30. 5 out of 5

    Philippe Deblois

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