Finding the Concept of Joy in Existential Philosophy and Literature (Paperback)

Finding the Concept of Joy in Existential Philosophy and Literature By III Hamm, Richard F. Cover Image

Finding the Concept of Joy in Existential Philosophy and Literature (Paperback)

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Current readings of existentialism are overly negative. It is not without reason

that existentialism has a reputation of pessimism preceding it, to the point that the

uninitiated cannot help but picture beatnik poets chain-smoking by the first syllable of the

name "Sartre." Existentialism, while a movement over one hundred and fifty years old,

is often characterized in the light of the media popularity it was given in the decade

following the Second World War-although much of the spirit of what is supposedly

existentialism came more as a response to the First. The Great War brought with it

devastation across Europe that it instilled a sense of malaise in an entire generation of

survivors. In the face of such violence, one of the common responses was to wonder if

there could truly be any sense of meaning or purpose to life. This movement,

philosophically, was existentialism.

Existentialism as a movement is not a denial of meaning. That is the role of

nihilism. Existentialism simply says there is no sense of predetermined meaning, and

that, in a particular formation, we are verbs before nouns: "to be" rather than a being

thing in any real sense. Of course, there is an obvious pessimistic reading of any text that

bases its thought on the foundation that humans are existent before their essence-if there

is no predetermined meaning in the world, there certainly is a possibility that there does

not have to be meaning in the world at all.

The future of the study of existential philosophy in part depends on its continuing

attractiveness to a new generation of scholars. One of the things holding existentialism

back is the alienating effect it can have on people-in large part because of its perceived

concurrence with negativity. The aforementioned lack of a predetermined essence can

cause anxiety, angst or anguish depending on whether you ask S ren Kierkegaard, Martin

Heidegger or Jean-Paul Sartre.

Product Details ISBN: 9781835205754
ISBN-10: 1835205755
Publisher: Hbnisha
Publication Date: August 31st, 2023
Pages: 152
Language: English