Irrational Man

Irrational Man

A Study in Existential Philosophy

Book - 1990
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Widely recognized as the finest definition of existentialist philosophy ever written, this book introduced existentialism to America in 1958. Barrett speaks eloquently and directly to concerns of the 1990s: a period when the irrational and the absurd are no better integrated than before and when humankind is in even greater danger of destroying its existence without ever understanding the meaning of its existence.

Irrational Man begins by discussing the roots of existentialism in the art and thinking of Augustine, Aquinas, Pascal, Baudelaire, Blake, Dostoevski, Tolstoy, Hemingway, Picasso, Joyce, and Beckett. The heart of the book explains the views of the foremost existentialists--Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. The result is a marvelously lucid definition of existentialism and a brilliant interpretation of its impact.
Publisher: New York : Anchor Books, Doubleday [1990]
ISBN: 9780385031387
Characteristics: 314 p. ; 21 cm.


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Nov 12, 2017

" Instead of making intellectual speculations about the whole of reality, philosophy must turn, Husserl declared, to a pure description of what is. In taking this position he became the most influential force not only upon Heidegger but upon the whole generation of German philosophers who came to maturity about the time of the First World War. " "Bertrand Russell's language is altered from Plato, but the line of thought is the same. To exist, said Plato, is to be a copy or likeness of the Idea, or essence. Particular things exist to the degree that they fulfill, or SATISFY the archetypal pattern of the Idea...existence is understood as derivitave from essence. Existents exist in virtue of essence." " James' vituperation of rationalism is so passionate that latter-day Pragmatists see their own residual rationalism of scientific method thereby put in question...what remains of their movement tends to think of him as a black sheep." "Alfred Adler, who had read Nietzsche, declared that the Will to Power was basic, Freud maintained that sexuality and Eros were." "Heidegger: 'Thinking only begins at the point where we have come to know that Reason, glorified for centuries, is the most obstinate adversary of thinking.' "


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