the young and late Sartre. 6 We will also see the manner in which the concepts of rights, duties, and power that Sartre develops in this chapter are independent of the Polis . As such, Sartre has redefined certain of the fundamental concepts found in
T. Storm Heter
This article presents a novel defense of Sartrean ethics based on the concept of interpersonal recognition. The immediate post-war texts Anti-Semite and Jew, What is Literature? and Notebooks for an Ethics express Sartre's inchoate yet ultimately defensible view of obligations to others. Such obligations are not best understood as Kantian duties, but rather as Hegelian obligations of mutual recognition. The emerging portrait of Sartrean ethics offers a strong reply to the classical criticism that authenticity would license vicious lifestyles like serial killing. In addition to acting with clarity and responsibility, existentially authentic individuals must respect others.
Sartre's play Les Mouches (The Flies), first performed in 1943 under German occupation, has long been controversial. While intended to encourage resistance against the Nazis, its approval by the censor indicates that the regime did not recognize the play as a threat. Further, its apparently violent and solitary themes have been read as irresponsible or apolitical. For these reasons, the play has been characterized as ambiguous or worse. Sartre himself later saw it as overemphasizing individual autonomy, and in the view of one critic, it conveys an “existentialist fascism.” In response to this reading, it is necessary to attend to the elements of the play that already emphasize duty to society. From this perspective, the play can be seen as anticipating the concern with collective responsibility usually associated with the later Sartre of the 1960s. More than this, the play's apparent “ambiguity” can be found to exemplify a didacticism that is much more complex than sometimes attributed to Sartre. It is not only an exhortation about ethical responsibility, but also a performance of the difficulties attendant to that duty.
Dennis A. Gilbert
At a time when a "return to Sartre" is being heralded in France and elsewhere in preparation for the celebration of the centennial of his birth, it seems appropriate to ponder the nature and tenor of this renewal. To which aspects of Sartre's work are we returning as the centennial approaches, and are we doing so with fresh eyes or with the same critical prejudices that have obscured our appreciation of this work in the past? If one looks for answers to Bernard-Henri Lévy (aka BHL), the principal instigator of this current renewal, with specific regard to the genre that interests us in these pages—the theater—one is going to be sorely disappointed. For while Lévy considers Sartre "the first [writer]—the only [writer]—to know how to split himself equally well between being a theoretician and an accomplished storyteller," he lavishes this praise solely on the theory and practice of Sartre's novels: "The concept of engagement is not a political concept stressing the social duties of the writer; it is a philosophical concept highlighting the metaphysical powers of language. … Sartre … has never really written a novel with a [totalizing] thesis or message" (BHL 85, 86).
Edited by David Detmer and John Ireland
Dialectical Reason . On the basis of this interpretation, Bassiri offers an account of Sartre’s ideas on power, rights, duties, moderation, justice, and personal identity, among other topics. Because the last two issues of Sartre Studies International were
A Defense of Lacanian Responsibility
are responsible for both acting according to our duty, as well as responsible for determining what that duty is. 15 He claims that we should also read Lacan’s imperative in a similar way as saying: that not only are we responsible to our desire
Sartrean Ethics in History, 1938–1948 – From Kantian Universalism to Derision
Translator : Ârash Aminian Tabrizi
of the Kantian argument against lying ( le mensonge ). One knows that, for Kant, lying is the most unforgivable violation of human beings’ duties to themselves. If, according to the categorical imperative, the criterion for the morality of action is
A Sartrean Contribution to Resisting Racial Injustice
Justin I. Fugo
opposed to offering appeals or calls for action. Moral obligations are better understood as regulative ideals rather than absolute duties. Such an understanding admits to the dynamic process of morality, in which we need to appeal continually to others to
John Gillespie, Kyle Shuttleworth, Nik Farrell Fox, and Mike Neary
as a virtue because eudaimonia is not a virtue for Aristotle but rather the end which the virtues lead to. Again, on the Kantian account, virtues are ends which are also duties, but it is questionable whether a way of life could be considered
Sarah Horton and Adrian van den Hoven
-enhancing movement of love.” (433-4) Finally, Marguerite Lacaze analyzes the importance of love in Camus's posthumous Le Premier Homme . She notes that Camus stresses “the vanity of our quest for love” (435) but adds that “love is the only positive duty he knows