Cambridge University Press veröffentlicht Lexikon zu Jürgen Habermas
Ceremonial presentation of the »Cambridge Habermas Lexicon« at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften

A great honor for Jürgen Habermas: In the year of his 90th birthday, Cambridge University Press has published a comprehensive lexicon on the philosopher and sociologist who was a professor at the Institute of Philosophy at Goethe University Frankfurt until 1994. It was written by an international team of authors, including scholars from Goethe University. The lexicon was unveiled on May 27, 2019 at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften in Bad Homburg and presented to Jürgen Habermas personally by the lexicon’s editors, Amy Allen and Eduardo Mendieta.

Jürgen Habermas with the editors Amy Allen and Eduardo Mendieta (Photo Stefanie Wetzel)

The basic concepts, categories and themes of Habermas’ work are explained in over 200 entries and technical and intellectual contexts are elaborated. The range of over 120 terms extends from »Aesthetics« to »World Disclosure«, the list of important Habermas-related thinkers begins with Theodor W. Adorno and ends with Iris Marion Young. The Frankfurt philosophers Axel Honneth and Rainer Forst are also discussed in the chapter »Names Associated«. The work is characterized by a system that cross-references the individual entries with further literature on the respective topic. It also contains an overview of Jürgen Habermas' academic career, a catalogue of his works, and a comprehensive bibliography. The editors hope that the lexicon will become a reference work for all scholars, students and interested readers who are interested in Habermas' work and its reception in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Photo Stefanie Wetzel

Matthias Lutz-Bachmann, professor of philosophy at Goethe University and director of the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften, emphasized that the »Cambridge Habermas Lexicon« illustrates Habermas' outstanding importance: »Yes, I would like to go so far as to say that Jürgen Habermas is the most important philosopher worldwide among philosophers living today. And we can be proud and grateful that he is a member of the Institute of Philosophy at Goethe University and a frequent guest at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften and the Frankfurt Cluster of Excellence ›The Formation of Normative Orders‹. We have all learned an infinite amount from him.«

Jürgen Habermas with the authors who presented him with the lexicon on May 27, 2019. (Photo Stefanie Wetzel)

Lutz-Bachmann also pointed out that Habermas is expected to publish of work of his own before the end of this year: »In the fall of this year, at the age of almost 90, this great philosopher and important intellect will be publishing a two-volume, more than 1,700-page work on the ›Discourse on Faith and Knowledge‹ with Suhrkamp. During a retreat two years ago at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften, we had the honor of discussing preliminary passages of this work with the author in a small working group. This publication will give us the opportunity to get to know Habermas’ intellectual brilliance from a completely new angle.«

Amy Allen, Eduardo Mendieta (eds.): The Cambridge Habermas Lexicon. Cambridge University Press 2019.

Interview with the editors
You can download the podcast of the show Kulturcafé (28.05.2019, HR2 Kultur) here (in english).

Autor Dirk Frank, Goethe-Universität
(FKH - 28.05.2019)