Expression and Survival: An Aesthetic Approach to the Problem of Suicide
Author: Craig Greenman
Date Of Publication: Jun 2008
Philosophers know suicide primarily as an ethical problem. But in Expression and Survival, Craig Greenman argues that, when it comes to suicide, the standard ethical approach may do more harm than good. He develops instead an aesthetic approach, arguing that art–making it or experiencing it–can help a suicidal person survive.
Drawing on the work of philosophers and artists, as well as his own experiences, Greenman guides the reader through the landscape to which many suicidal people feel condemned. He traces the problem back to antagonism–we harm others and they harm us–and argues that art, broadly construed, can help us survive it. The result will be of interest to ethicists, aestheticians, social and political philosophers, therapists, and anyone who has ever struggled with suicide.
Also included in this volume are two essays, “Writing and Ambivalence” and “What Is Philosophy?”
Craig Greenman is Assistant Professor of Humanities at Colby-Sawyer College in New Hampshire. He has published articles in the Journal of Social Philosophy, Philosophy and Social Criticism, and Writing on the Edge. He received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from Loyola University Chicago.
“This book is difficult, but also necessary: a sober reflection on how and why we cope with contingency, and how some of us cannot cope. It is no exaggeration to say that Greenman engages in a life or death struggle on every page. This is a moving work, and it adds to the possibilities of living on.”
Bill Martin, DePaul University, Author of Avant Rock: Experimental Music from the Beatles to Bjork
“Rejecting a conventional emphasis on the ethics of suicide, Greenman's Expression and Survival insists on an aesthetic approach. This deeply engaging book has a literary richness that cloaks a direct, clear, indeed piercing voice–always original, always interesting, and always challenging.”
Margaret Pabst Battin, University of Utah, Author of Ending Life: Ethics and the Way We Die
Price Uk Gbp: 24.99
Price Us Usd: 37.99
Sample pdf (including Table of Contents)