Instrumental rationality

Instrumental rationality is a mode of thought and action that identifies problems and works directly towards their solution.[1] Instrumental rationality is often studied as a social phenomenon by sociology, social philosophy and critical theory. Its proponents appear to work largely without reference to the school Instrumentalism, with which it is so closely associated linguistically. Perhaps […]

Instrumental rationality is a mode of thought and action that identifies problems and works directly towards their solution.[1]

Instrumental rationality is often studied as a social phenomenon by sociology, social philosophy and critical theory. Its proponents appear to work largely without reference to the school Instrumentalism, with which it is so closely associated linguistically. Perhaps its most famous critic is philosopher Martin Heidegger, who argued that the greatest danger facing modern humans was their own instrumental relationship to the world.


René Girard

René Girard (/ʒiˈrɑrd/; French: [ʒiʁaʁ]; born December 25, 1923) is a French-born, American historian, literary critic, and philosopher of social science whose work belongs to the tradition of anthropological philosophy. Girard is the author of nearly thirty books (seebelow), with his writings spanning many academic domains. Although the reception of his work is different in each of these areas, there is a growing […]

René Girard (/?i?r?rd/French: [?i?a?]; born December 25, 1923) is a French-born, American historianliterary critic, and philosopher of social science whose work belongs to the tradition of anthropological philosophy. Girard is the author of nearly thirty books (seebelow), with his writings spanning many academic domains. Although the reception of his work is different in each of these areas, there is a growing body of secondary literature on his work and his influence on disciplines such as literary criticismcritical theory,anthropologytheologypsychologymythologysociologyeconomicscultural studies, and philosophy.

Girard’s fundamental ideas, which he has developed throughout his career and provide the foundation for his thinking, are that desire is mimetic (all of our desires are borrowed from other people), that all conflict originates in mimetic desire (mimetic rivalry), that thescapegoat mechanism is the origin of sacrifice and the foundation of human culture, and religion was necessary in human evolution to control the violence that can come from mimetic rivalry, and that the Bible reveals these ideas and denounces the scapegoat mechanism.