In this provocative philosophical analysis, Sartre refutes the idea that existentialism drains meaning from human life, by claiming that the philosophy instead gives man total freedom to achieve his own significance. Sartre’s Existentialism and Human Emotions is a stirring defense of existentialist thought, which argues that “existence precedes essence.” While attacks on existentialism claim that the philosophy leads to a kind of nihilistic gloom, Sartre contends that instead existentialism is the only path toward giving man meaning. Sartre ultimately argues that by the very absence of “a priori meaning,” an individual can discover and shape his or her own significance and place in the world.
©1957 Philosophical Library (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
It needs to be annotated and should come with a pdf glossary of terms. Sartre created several terms of art, such as Being for itself and Being in itself, facticity, and "the nothingness of Being" in his prior works.Without any reintroduction of the concepts, this work starts discussing "the for itself" and "the in itself." It's been 20 years since I last read any Sartre, so I had to look up all of these terms online just to understand the sentences.
It probably cannot be enjoyed in an audio format. Existentialism isn't actually meant to be enjoyed, though. It's just a different way of looking at the world. I only chose to read it on audio because I have a disability that makes it hard to read text.
My MP3 player lets me play books on a slower-than recorded speed, and I had to use the slow speed for the entire book. I don't think the narrator or the producer comprehended the prose. The words that needed to be emphasized or read more slowly were lost amid all the other monotonal words. I had to rewind and re-listen to many sentences multiple times, especially in chapter two.
Because of my disability, this audiobook was a better alternative than a digital text-to-speech version of the book. This audiobook is only something I would recommend to people well-versed in existentialism.
If you are a lay reader, this book will sound like gibberish to you. A better book for you is "Man's Search for Meaning," by Victor Frankl.
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