Download An Introduction to Existentialism by Robert G. Olson PDF

By Robert G. Olson

Vital consultant to 1 of the main influential idea structures of our century. Stressing the paintings of Heidegger and Sartre, it bargains a cautious and aim exam of the existentialist place and values — freedom of selection, person dignity, own love, inventive attempt — and solutions to the everlasting questions of the human situation.

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Additional info for An Introduction to Existentialism

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None of these precursors of existentialism, however, insisted so urgently as the existentialists upon the impossibility of attaining happiness or developed with anything like the completeness of the existentialists a picture of the values which follow upon a clear-sighted appreciation of the human tragedy. Moreover, in one way or another the mainstream of traditional philosophizing invariably pulled them along with it. By a judicious selection of texts a Catholic has little difficulty in reconciling St.

The same points could be illustrated by detailing existentialist arguments against the ordinary man’s values, against Stoicism, and against the Platonic tradition. For the most part, however, these arguments presuppose an analysis of the human condition which will be the subject matter of the following chapter and from which they follow so naturally that it will hardly be necessary to spell them out. The important problem at this point has to do with the manner in which the existentialists hope to establish their dual claim that happiness is impossible and that intensity is the chief of human values.

Genuine knowledge, according to members of this movement, is always knowledge of particular beings and the relationships which obtain between them. Put slightly differently and somewhat more precisely, genuine knowledge is invariably a knowledge of a recurrent type of relationship between two or more kinds of particular beings under similar circumstances. Regardless of how this theory is stated, it is clear that being itself, or the totality of particular beings, cannot be an object of knowledge.

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