The Role of the Intellectual

The Role of the Intellectual

The intellectual is a modern phenomenon. I do not mean that there was no intellectual work before the modern era; rather, in other times intellectual work was not undertaken so self-consciously or as a task justifying one’s existence. Now it is a distinctive calling that revolves about a critical stance toward ideas. “Critical stance” means—and there is little or no disagreement in the discourse about intellectuals— an analytical or intensive examination of the structure...


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