Habermas ’s Communicative Rationality and Cultural Dialogue: The Case of Babel .

Hamid Masfour


The argument of this paper focuses on the vital role of cultural theory in understanding and
exploring the complexity of the elements that cultural dialogue underlies. Through the
theoretical insights of the German philosopher Jurgen Habermas, this paper aims to exploit a
lifelong intellectual work in dissecting some aspects and formulating some of the controlling
principles that can potentially give rise to cultural dialogue. Proceeding from theoretical pre-
liminaries on cultural dialogue and Habermas’s communicative rationality as a salient phi-
losophical contribution to cultural theory, the following paper studies Babel as a cinematic
case to put to test Habermas’s conception of dialogue. By the conclusion, ample room is left
to critically reflect on the strengths and limitations of communicative rationality and to assess
its scope of enhancing cultural dialogue


Cultural dialogue; communicative rationality; universal pragmatics; discourse ethics; difference.

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