Speech , or the study of it , has some relevance in Levinasian ethics According to Levinas , ethics is the “condition of dialogue , and peace can be pursued through the resulting ethics even if dialogue fails
According to Levinas , speech communication is central to ethics . Ethics is the precedence of the other over the self . We feel the imperative to act when we become aware of the other who is in need . Ethics has speech as part of its foundation . For Levinas , ethics is metaphysical , and is founded in an awareness of other persons . Ethics [banner_entry_middle]
stems from a natural desire to respond to “the other ” person . Ethics is in the demand for response . Ethics transcends dialogue , but ethics requires communication whether in “the hiatus , the response , or the approach
This can be studied by analyzing the instances of ethical behavior during the United States tragedy of September 11 , 2001 and the following days , where many people helped others . A person ‘s natural (ethical desire to respond (the ethical imperative ) is a necessary influence on all instances of communication
Levinas recognizes three main elements of ethics : the face , the saying and the trace . The face is what the other presents to the self before any other from of communication transpires . The face becomes the self ‘s first channel of awareness of the other , and leads to the second element , the “saying . The saying is the self ‘s explicit acknowledgement of the other . And then there is the trace , a difficult-to-rationalize drive in humans that compels us to respond to the needs of others , to focus on others before the self . We are by nature subject to the trace the imperative to respond
The saying is something that transcends language . The saying “is always subject to the threat of betrayal by the said , which operates as a system of nouns to name and constitute things ” Nevertheless , even if the said “betrays ” the saying , the saying is powerful enough to remain as a trace (of the ethical side of man . The trace of the saying is something along the lines of a tendency to lean toward the other without holding back , as a call of conscience . The spontaneous acts of helpfulness during the September 11 tragedy exemplify this call of conscience , the trace . It is when people act out “without thinking or set aside “thought ” to do what they must
The trace is exemplified in Harry Ramos , who chose to stay with a man Victor , who could not go on with the others evacuating the World Trade Center 1 on September 11 , 2001 . Harry Ramos told Victor “Don ‘t worry I ‘m with you ” What exactly compelled Harry to sacrifice his own safety for Victor we can only label as the “trace . This demonstrates Levinas ‘s conception of ethics , as a response to the “call ” of the other . For Levinas this would be evidence of the quest for “the trace however it challenges logic and rationality . The trace “disturbs the of the world ” Although… [banner_entry_footer]
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