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Unformatted text preview: Week 5b Sartre "Existentialism is a Humanism" What, then, is this that we call existentialism? Existentialism-Satre: wrote literature, politically involved. This article his version of existentialism. There are two types of existentialists: Christian and atheist *interesting division* What philosophy that are Existentialist have in common is their commitment to a thesis: existence precedes essence. Existence: the fact of something being.-What is difference between imaginary vs real pot of money? You can do something with real pot of money. Differences between real and imaginary friends. Contrast with : Essence: categorization, descriptive characterization-Kind of thing we can think about. It is possible for something that exists to have an essence and something that doesnt exist to have the same essence. So we can think about a pot of money and we can describe it and it would have some attributes with real pot of money. Imaginary things could share same qualities of real things.-Dominant view in western philosophy: essence comes first Existensalism, in contrast, thinks this is wrong. For Existence to come before essence is for the subjectivity of a person to be something that they must recognize as explanatorily prior to the discovery of essences.-So what this means what comes before our understanding of the world is the fact of us the people that can understand itthat is prior to any explination. So if you are trying to figure out why we exist? Why should I be nice to neighbor etc. Whatever question I ask invites some description of the way things are and that would involve essences. In order for that question to be possible I have to exist. I recognize that I am a subject that can ask these sorts of questions. -People often suggest to the people that think they know how things are that they havent taken into account something really important: the selves choosing the explanation. In which case what difference between a person believes in a religious world vs secular world..has a lot to do with what people choose. What this implies is that people have a responsibility for the essences that they attribute to themselves and others. They cannot assume that the world is simply the way it is independently of their way of viewing it, for no matter how they describe the world, it is their decision to do so that accounts for the description.-So existentialist thinks its wrong to take self out of picture when describing the world because while we are not what we are describing, we are the explanation for that description. You made a choice in selecting that explination. You are responsible for that. For example, If I come into a room and think everyone is an idiotthat reflects upon me. When I judge anything, I am concenting something about my pscycology. If I say no they really are idiotsI am fooling myself running away from responsibility.-One major view is that there is a God, created everything and is all powerful. We say God plays -One major view is that there is a God, created everything and is all powerful....
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- Spring '11