Early proponents of comparative philosophy believed that the dissemination of comparative methods would lead to step forward in human consciousness and contribute to a more peaceful world. Can comparative philosophy today still aspire to such goals? On the one hand, the aims of the field have narrowed, so that comparative philosophy is seen as a method of interpreting particular thinkers and texts or as a tool for addressing specific philosophical problems. On the other hand, critics argue that comparative philosophy is an outmoded enterprise that should give way to more pluralistic forms of inquiry. In this paper, I examine three contemporary views about the social relevance of comparative philosophy. The first sees comparative philosophy as a means of cultivating liberal citizenship; the second as an ally in decolonial struggle; the third as offering resources to promote human flourishing in the modern world. These approaches offer comparative philosophers a wide range of options for thinking about the social relevance of their field.
"The Social Relevance of Comparative Philosophy,"
Comparative Philosophy: Vol. 15:
1, Article 6.
Available at: https://scholarworks.sjsu.edu/comparativephilosophy/vol15/iss1/6