Other Works Cited 1. Key Themes of Existentialism Although a highly diverse tradition of thought, seven themes can be identified that provide some sense of overall unity. Here, these themes will be briefly introduced; they can then provide us with an intellectual framework within which to discuss exemplary figures within the history of existentialism. Philosophy as a Way of Life Philosophy should not be thought of primarily either as an attempt to investigate and understand the self or the world, or as a special occupation that concerns only a few.
Existence precedes essence Sartre claimed that a central proposition of Existentialism is that Existentialism and the absurd in camus precedes essencewhich means that the most important consideration for individuals is that they are individuals—independently acting and responsible, conscious beings "existence" —rather than what labels, roles, stereotypes, definitions, or other preconceived categories the individuals fit "essence".
The actual life of the individuals is what constitutes what could be called their "true essence" instead of there being an arbitrarily attributed essence others use to define them. Thus, human beings, through their own consciousnesscreate their own values and determine a meaning to their life.
His form must be just as manifold as are the opposites that he holds together. The systematic eins, zwei, drei is an abstract form that also must inevitably run into trouble whenever it is to be applied to the concrete. To the same degree as the subjective thinker is concrete, to the same degree his form must also be concretely dialectical.
But just as he himself is not a poet, not an ethicist, not a dialectician, so also his form is none of these directly. His form must first and last be related to existence, and in this regard he must have at his disposal the poetic, the ethical, the dialectical, the religious.
Subordinate character, setting, etc. The setting is not the fairyland of the imagination, where poetry produces consummation, nor is the setting laid in England, and historical accuracy is not a concern.
The setting is inwardness in existing as a human being; the concretion is the relation of the existence-categories to one another. Historical accuracy and historical actuality are breadth. Instead, the phrase should be taken to say that people are 1 defined only insofar as they act and 2 that they are responsible for their actions.
For example, someone who acts cruelly towards other people is, by that act, defined as a cruel person. Furthermore, by this action of cruelty, such persons are themselves responsible for their new identity cruel persons.
This is as opposed to their genes, or human nature, bearing the blame. As Sartre says in his lecture Existentialism is a Humanism: The more positive, therapeutic aspect of this is also implied: A person can choose to act in a different way, and to be a good person instead of a cruel person.
In a set of letters, Heidegger implies that Sartre misunderstood him for his own purposes of subjectivism, and that he did not mean that actions take precedence over being so long as those actions were not reflected upon. This way of living, Heidegger called "average everydayness".
Absurdism The notion of the Absurd contains the idea that there is no meaning in the world beyond what meaning we give it. This meaninglessness also encompasses the amorality or "unfairness" of the world.
According to Albert Camus, the world or the human being is not in itself absurd. The concept only emerges through the juxtaposition of the two, where life becomes absurd due to the incompatibility between human beings and the world they inhabit.
These are considered absurd since they issue from human freedom, undermining their foundation outside of themselves. The notion of the Absurd has been prominent in literature throughout history. It is in relation to the concept of the devastating awareness of meaninglessness that Albert Camus claimed that "there is only one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide" in his The Myth of Sisyphus.
The possibility of having everything meaningful break down poses a threat of quietismwhich is inherently against the existentialist philosophy.
The ultimate hero of absurdism lives without meaning and faces suicide without succumbing to it. Facticity Facticity is a concept defined by Sartre in Being and Nothingness as the in-itselfwhich delineates for humans the modalities of being and not being.
This can be more easily understood when considering facticity in relation to the temporal dimension of our past: As an example, consider two men, one of whom has no memory of his past and the other who remembers everything.
They both have committed many crimes, but the first man, knowing nothing about this, leads a rather normal life while the second man, feeling trapped by his own past, continues a life of crime, blaming his own past for "trapping" him in this life.
There is nothing essential about his committing crimes, but he ascribes this meaning to his past. Another aspect of facticity is that it entails angstboth in the sense that freedom "produces" angst when limited by facticity, and in the sense that the lack of the possibility of having facticity to "step in" for one to take responsibility for something one has done, also produces angst.
The idea of the absurd is a common theme in many existentialist works, particularly in torosgazete.comity is the notion of contrast between two things. As Camus explains it in The Myth of Sisyphus. The absurd is born out of this confrontation between the human need and the unreasonable silence of the world. Existentialism is a movement in philosophy and literature that emphasizes individual existence, freedom and torosgazete.com began in the mid-to-late 19th Century, but reached its peak in midth Century France. It is based on the view that humans define their own meaning in life, and try to make rational decisions despite existing in an irrational torosgazete.com focuses on the question of human. Understand Existentialism (Teach Yourself) [Mel Thompson, Nigel Rodgers] on torosgazete.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Is this the right book for me? Understand Existentialism breaks down a complex mode of thought into more manageable sections.
Authenticity Many noted existentialist writers consider the theme of authentic existence important. Authentic existence involves the idea that one has to "create oneself" and then live in accordance with this self. This can take many forms, from pretending choices are meaningless or random, through convincing oneself that some form of determinism is true, to a sort of "mimicry" where one acts as "one should".
How "one should" act is often determined by an image one has, of how one such as oneself say, a bank manager, lion tamer, prostitute, etc. In Being and NothingnessSartre relates an example of a " waiter " in bad faith: The Other and the Look[ edit ] Main article:Albert Camus THE STRANGER was in place, but the screws had been given only a few turns and their nickeled heads stuck out above the wood, which was stained dark walnut.
At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face. It happens that the stage sets collapse. Rising, streetcar, four hours in the office or the factory, meal, streetcar, four hours of work, meal, sleep and Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday according to the same rhythm — this path is easily followed most of the time.
Albert Camus (—) Albert Camus was a French-Algerian journalist, playwright, novelist, philosophical essayist, and Nobel laureate.
Though he was neither by advanced training nor profession a philosopher, he nevertheless made important, forceful contributions to a wide range of issues in moral philosophy in his novels, reviews, articles, essays, and speeches—from terrorism and.
Existentialism. WOODY ALLEN: That's quite a lovely Jackson Pollock, isn't it?
GIRL IN MUSEUM: Yes it is. WOODY ALLEN: What does it say to you? GIRL IN MUSEUM: It restates the negativeness of the universe, the hideous lonely emptiness of existence, nothingness, the predicament of man forced to live in a barren, godless eternity, like a tiny flame flickering in an immense void, with nothing but.
Existentialism Here and Now. By Alfie Kohn.
TWENTY-FIVE YEARS ago, existentialism was a hot piece of intellectual property. A wide reading public was buying up such new books as William Barrett’s Irrational Man: A Study in Existential Philosophy and Viktor Frankl’s From Death Camp to Existentialism (later republished under the title Man’s Search for Meaning).
Existentialism (/ ˌ ɛ ɡ z ɪ ˈ s t ɛ n ʃ əl ɪ z əm /) is a tradition of philosophical inquiry associated mainly with certain 19th and 20th-century European philosophers who, despite profound doctrinal differences, shared the belief that philosophical thinking begins with the human subject—not merely the thinking subject, but the acting, feeling, living human individual.