by Ronald C. Arnett
foreword by Algis Mickunas
Southern Illinois University Press, 2017
eISBN: 978-0-8093-3570-1 | Paper: 978-0-8093-3569-5
Library of Congress Classification B2430.L484A76 2017
Dewey Decimal Classification 194


Distinguished Book Award, Philosophy of Communication Division, National Communication Association, 2017

Top Book Award, Communication Ethics Division, National Communication Association, 2017

Philosopher Emmanuel Levinas’s ethics as first philosophy explicates a human obligation and responsibility to and for the Other that is an unending and imperfect commitment. In Levinas’s Rhetorical Demand: The Unending Obligation of Communication Ethics, Ronald C. Arnett underscores the profundity of Levinas’s insights for communication ethics.

Arnett outlines communication ethics as a primordial call of responsibility central to Levinas’s writing and mission, analyzing it through a Levinasian lens with examination of social artifacts ranging from the Heidegger-Cassirer debate to Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World story concerning illicit possession of information.

Levinas’s Rhetorical Demand offers an account of Levinas’s project and the pragmatic implications of attending to a call of responsibility to and for the Other. This book yields a rich and nuanced understanding of Levinas’s work, revealing the practical importance of his insights, and including a discussion of related theorists and thinkers.