Peter Sloterdijk’s reputation as one of the most original thinkers of our time has grown steadily since the early 1980s. This volume of over thirty conversations and interviews spanning two decades illuminates the multiple interconnections of his life and work.
In these wide-ranging dialogues Sloterdijk gives his views on a variety of topics, from doping to doxa, design to dogma, media to mobility and the financial crisis to football. Here we encounter Sloterdijk from every angle: as he expounds his ideas on the philosophical tradition and the latest strands of contemporary thought, as he analyses the problems of our age and as he provides a new and startling perspective on everyday events. Through exaggeration, Sloterdijk draws our attention to crucial issues and controversies and makes us aware of their implications for society and the individual. Always eager to share his knowledge and erudition, he reveals himself equally at home in ancient Babylon, in the channels of the mass media and on the ethical and moral terrain of religion, education or genetic engineering.
Appealing both to the seasoned reader of Sloterdijk and to the curious newcomer, these dialogues offer fresh insight into the intellectual and political events of recent decades. They also give us glimpses of Sloterdijk’s own life story, from his early passionate love of reading and writing to his journeys in East and West, his commitment to Europe and his acceptance and enjoyment of the role of a public intellectual and philosopher in the twenty-first century.
1. In Place of a Preface
2. The Half-Moon Man
3. Why are People Media?
4. World Estrangement and Diagnosis of our Times
5. Uterus on Wheels
6. Fire your Shrink!
7. Philosophical Retuning
8. We're Always Riding Down Maternity Drive
9. Tackling the Unspoken Things in Culture
10. On Wealth and Self-Respect
11. Learning Is Joyful Anticipation of Oneself
12. Postmen and Fallen Towers
13. Raising our Heads: Pampering Spaces and Time Drifts
14. Good Theory Doesn’t Complain
15. There Are No Individuals
16. Confused People Spread Confusion
17. Germans Want to Be Compelled: Theory for the Year's End
18. Comparatists of Happiness
19. Image and Perspective. An Experiment in Atmospheric Seeing
20. On Progress. The Holy Fire of Dissatisfaction
21. A Team of Hermaphrodites
22. Under a Brighter Sky
23. Making the Effort: The Reader
24. Thus Spoke Sloterdijk
25. Fathers Should Be Kept Away from Brothels and Pubs
26. The Athletics of Dying
27. Do Your Duty to Enjoy!
28. Even a God Can’t Save Us
29. A Plug for Higher Energies
30. Mortgaging the Air: The Financial Crisis
31. Is There a Way Out of the Crisis of Western Culture?
32. Questions of Fate: A Novel About Thought
33. Humans in Repetition / The 21st Century will be Acrobatic
34. With the Babble of Babylon in the Background
'Selected Exaggerations' presents a blow-by-blow chronicle of an intellectual journey, one of the most remarkable of our time. In it, we follow Sloterdijk as he comments on his work in progress and current affairs over a twenty-year period. Often mischievous, sometimes maddening, always thought-provoking, Sloterdijk is a force to be reckoned with. With this publication, the English-speaking world finally has a one-volume introduction to this extraordinary thinker.
Brian Massumi, University of Montréal