By Sarah Bakewell
From the best-selling writer of How to Live, a lively account of 1 of the 20th century’s significant highbrow events and the progressive thinkers who got here to form it
Paris, 1933: 3 contemporaries meet over apricot cocktails on the Bec-de-Gaz bar at the rue Montparnasse. they're the younger Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, and longtime pal Raymond Aron, a fellow thinker who raves to them a few new conceptual framework from Berlin referred to as Phenomenology. “You see,” he says, “if you're a phenomenologist you could discuss this cocktail and make philosophy out of it!”
It used to be this straightforward word that will ignite a flow, inspiring Sartre to combine Phenomenology into his personal French, humanistic sensibility, thereby growing a wholly new philosophical technique encouraged by means of subject matters of radical freedom, genuine being, and political activism. This stream might sweep in the course of the jazz golf equipment and cafés of the Left financial institution earlier than making its manner the world over as Existentialism.
Featuring not just philosophers, but in addition playwrights, anthropologists, convicts, and revolutionaries, At the Existentialist Café follows the existentialists’ tale, from the 1st rebellious spark during the moment international warfare, to its function in postwar liberation activities similar to anticolonialism, feminism, and homosexual rights. Interweaving biography and philosophy, it's the epic account of passionate encounters—fights, amorous affairs, mentorships, rebellions, and lengthy partnerships—and a necessary research into what the existentialists need to supply us at the present time, at a second once we are once more confronting the foremost questions of freedom, worldwide accountability, and human authenticity in a fractious and technology-driven global.
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