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Book of the Week: Sartre, by Neil Levy

By July 16, 2012

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Sartre, by Neil Levy
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Jean-Paul Sartre was acclaimed by the people of France in ways normally reserved for rock stars in other countries. When he died in 1980, fifty thousand people lined the streets of Paris to watch his coffin go by. What did he do to merit such respect and attention? Sartre's philosophy may not always be easy, but he did not simply write for the sake of academic and professional philosophers. Sartre developed a philosophy designed to transcend academia and help people live according to authentic, freely chosen values. By aiming some of works at people with little or no philosophical education as well as using novels and plays, he ensured that his philosophy reached the widest possible audience.


Book of the Week: Sartre, by Neil Levy

July 22, 2012 at 5:33 am
(1) PeteLH says:

Hi folks, new here in commenting, though I’ve been reading the blog for years. Sartre has good ideas, but, unfortunately for him and them, we humans are in fact animals, a species of ape, and this does define and limit (almost a tautology, but not quite) our nature and capacities. Not just anything is a good for humans; we have specific needs, interests and capacities (for example, we can’t fly ourselves, nor swim as deep as physeter, no matter how hard we push our ‘free will’). There is no loss here: if we were pure abstract intellect, as Sartre tends to think, we probably wouldn’t have any idea what to do with ourselves and our lives.

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