Roger-Pol Droit

The Company of Contemporaries Publication date : April 1, 2002

In The Company of Philosophers, Roger-Pol Droit reviewed some of the major philosophers in the history of thought, from Antiquity to the twentieth century. The book ended with Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze, since he had decided not to include any living writers: these would be the subject of a later volume. The Company of Contemporaries is that volume. Continuing the task begun in the earlier book, Droit reviews the works of some major contemporary thinkers: Bourdieu, Castoriadis, Eco, Foucault, Girard, Habermas, Lévi-Strauss, Ricœur, Serres, Thom, and Vernant, among others. But since he can talk to these living writers, ask questions and seek clarification, he does not relate to them in the same way as to the writers in the earlier volume. The interviews included here, recorded and published between 1972 and 2002, allow the reader to encounter biologists and sociologists, as well as anthropologists and psychoanalysts. Philosophers are well represented, but all the humanities have been included, and practically all major contemporary issues are considered, from bio-ethics to the end of history, from the construction of Europe to the rise of violence, from globalisation to the environment, from the development of science to political and religious extremism. Each interview is introduced by a short bio-bibliography, to help place the speaker in context. The book includes two indices, one listing proper names and the other subjects. The book opens with a short essay in which Roger-Pol Droit takes a look at what makes a conversation with a thinker so unique.

Roger-Pol Droit is a philosopher and researcher at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. His articles are published regularly in the French daily newspaper Le Monde. He is the author of The Company of Philosophers and 101 Experiences of Daily Philosophy.