Ironism

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Ironist (n. Ironism) (from Greek: eiron, eironeia), a term coined by Richard Rorty, describes someone who fulfills three conditions:

  1. He has radical and continuing doubts about the final vocabulary he currently uses, because he has been impressed by other vocabularies, vocabularies taken as final by people or books he has encountered;
  2. He realizes that argument phrased in his present vocabulary can neither underwrite nor dissolve these doubts;
  3. Insofar as he philosophizes about his situation, he does not think that his vocabulary is closer to reality than others, that it is in touch with a power not himself.
    — Richard Rorty, Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989, p.73

In Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity, Rorty argues that Proust, Nietzsche, Foucault, Heidegger, Derrida, and Nabokov, among others, all exemplify Ironism to different extents.

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