Irrational Man by William Barrett

Irrational Man by William BarrettNow this is more like it: an attempt from 1962 to explain to his American readership just what all the existentialist hoo-ha over there in Europe is all about. This book is considered to be “the finest definition of existentialist philosophy ever written”. And it certainly does sum up for the reader of today why existentialism was such a big deal, why it captured the imaginations of so many people, why it came to sum up the intellectual reaction to such a tumultuous period in history, and why it frames such important questions, in such compelling ways. In this book existentialism is explained, it is analyzed, and it is given to us as though we were there in that time, a time when these ideas were just emerging and beginning to change the world and how we see it, as well as how we see ourselves and our part in the world. Existentialism is, in many ways, a revolution in Western philosophy, one which has contributed massively to how we see ourselves, and it would be impossible to understand the latter half of the twentieth century without an appreciation of its significance. A very important book.

 

Mr A

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