Some Lessons in Metaphysics

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Norton, 1969 - 158 pagine
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José Ortega y Gasset was a writer and a thinker in the finest sense of both words. He was also an extraordinary educator who attracted eager students and enthusiasts of all ages. His inexhaustible subject was man and man's problems.Ortega's entry into the writing world came by way of newspaper essays that are still read by generations seeking revelations and interpretations of the world. He wrote on varied subjects: love, bullfighting, hunting, education, and Don Quixote. His incessant search for knowledge led him into political theory and practice and metaphysics as well.This present book represents Ortega's incursions into a field of thought along which anyone curious enough to travel will find leads him into a succession of ideas that extend his vision and his understanding of himself. If generations of men have puzzled over man's role in the universe and have tried to put it into words, Ortega's phrase "I am myself and my circumstances" is so simply and appealingly true that it may come as a great surprise to find it hailed as an important philosophic contribution. In this day of alienation, when the young have difficulty finding out who they are, Ortega's venture into metaphysics is a lit lamp in the first chapter, of the student's role will shed light on the reason for present student disorders.

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Informazioni sull'autore (1969)

Essayist and philosopher, a thinker influential in and out of the Spanish world, Jose Ortega y Gasset was professor of metaphysics at the University of Madrid from 1910 until the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in 1936. The Revolt of the Masses, his most famous work, owes much to post-Kantian schools of thought. Ortega's predominant thesis is the need of an intellectual aristocracy governing in a spirit of enlightened liberalism. Although Franco, after his victory in the civil war, offered to make Ortega Spain's "official philosopher" and to publish a deluxe edition of his works, with certain parts deleted, the philosopher refused. Instead, he chose the life of a voluntary exile in Argentina, and in 1941 he was appointed professor of philosophy at the University of San Marcos in Lima, Peru. He returned to Spain in 1945 and died in Madrid. Ortega's reformulation of the Cartesian cogito displays the fulcrum of his thought. While Rene Descartes declared "Cogito ergo sum" (I think, therefore I am), Ortega maintained "Cogito quia vivo" (I think because I live). He subordinated reason to life, to vitality. Reason becomes the tool of people existing biologically in a given time and place, rather than an overarching sovereign. Ortega's philosophy consequently discloses affinities in its metaphysics to both American pragmatism and European existentialism in spite of its elitism in social philosophy.

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