Hermes I: Communication

Hermes I: Communication

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Author: Michel Serres

Translator: Louise Burchill

Publisher: University of Minnesota Press (2023)

Michel Serres is recognized as one of the giants of postwar French philosophy of knowledge, along with Gilles Deleuze, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, and Gilbert Simondon. His early five-volume series Hermes, which appeared in the 1960s and 1970s, was an intellectual supernova in its proposition that culture and science shared the same mythic and narrative structures. Hermes I: Communication marks the start of a major publishing endeavor to introduce this foundational series into English. 

Building on the figure of the Greek god Hermes, who presides over the realms of communication and interpretation, Hermes I embarks on a reflection concerning the history of mathematics via Descartes and Leibniz and culminates by way of a Bachelardian logoanalytic reading of Homer, Dumas, Molière, Verne, and the story of Cinderella. We observe a singular poetic philosopher seeking to bridge the gap between the liberal arts and the sciences through a profound mathematical and poetic fable regarding information theory, history, and art, establishing a new way to think about the production of knowledge during the late twentieth century. In these pages, students and scholars of philosophy will discover an extraordinary project of thought as vital to critical reflection today as it was fifty years ago.