Dialogue as Moral Paradigm: Paths Toward Intercultural Transformation

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The Council of Europe’s 2008 White Paper on Intercultural Dialogue: ‘living together as equals in dignity’ points to the need for shared values upon which intercultural dialogue might rest. In order, however, to overcome the monologic separateness that threatens community, we must educate ourselves to recognize the dialogism of our humanity and to engage in deep encounters with others with a mature skepticism of all dogmatisms, including our own. In order to aid us in reaching the necessary insight, the author calls upon Bakhtin’s ideas of the dialogism of every utterance and of the unity and heteroglossia of language, Gadamer’s hermeneutical experience that shakes us loose from what we think we know, and Levinas’s description of that transcendent ideal of a dialogue beyond reciprocity. These perspectives break open our certainty that tribalism and individualism are fundamental, placing them instead as secondary phenomena that, though powerful, pronounce neither the initial nor the final word on our life together.
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I and Thou.Buber, Martin
Negative Dialectics.Adorno, Theodor W.

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