Philosophy..a heavy French industry | Gulf newspaper

Sharjah: Aladdin Mahmoud
When we talk about French philosophy, great names such as: Descartes, Henri Bergson, Auguste Comte, Jean-Paul Sartre, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Paul Ricoeur, Michel Foucault, Roland Barthes, Pierre Bourdieu, Jacques Derrida, Gilles Deleuze, Castoriadis and Edgar Morin crowd into the imagination. Gaston Bachelard, Alain Badiou, Lacan, and other stars shining in the sky of global thought; So that the painting of philosophy in the world would not be complete without them.

In the book “A View of French Philosophy,” the philosopher Jean Waal draws a painting full of different and different colors and lines on French thought and its poles and its impact on the past and contemporary life. On a fun and exciting journey packed with elegance and beauty in the worlds of French philosophy to get acquainted in a different way, or a panoramic way, as it was called, to that philosophy, and it includes the early beginnings until the middle of the twentieth century.

But is it possible that there is a “French philosophy”; What is special about that great country that astonished the world in the fields of literature and the arts? Isn’t philosophy universal in its idea?

The author acknowledges this, and believes that philosophy is not separated from the rest of human activities, just as France is also inseparable from the rest of the nations. more than they are philosophers; This matter gave an indication and feeling, in which there is a kind of truth, that philosophy itself is not restricted to specialists; Therefore, any history of French philosophy must take into account great writers like Montaigne and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and the writer concludes from this that the history of French philosophy cannot be separated from the history of science.

But despite the author’s talk about the public space and the universal nature of philosophy, at the same time he sees that there are strong and influential national and cultural peculiarities, which the writer calls “the moments of philosophy”, which are manifested in the appropriate space and time. Cosmic for the mind, it has at the same time its own and unique moment, and the book gives us two examples to demonstrate and clarify this matter by referring, in the first example, to the special moment of Greek philosophy between the fifth and third centuries BC, and the second example, which refers to the moment of idealism. German between Kant, Hegel, Fichte and Schelling, describing them as exceptional, unique, and creative, spanning from the late eighteenth century to the early nineteenth century.

The book also follows the impact of other philosophies in French, especially German, through the dialogues conducted by French thought with the greatest symbols of German philosophy such as Hegel, Feuerbach, Nietzsche, Kant and others. intellectually on the modern era; Indeed, in earlier times, the French filled the world and occupied people since Descartes and his great contributions in the seventeenth century. If Shakespeare said through one of his heroes: “To be or not to be that is the question,” Descartes decided that issue when he put answers that completely settled the development of modern philosophy. .

France’s intellectual energies exploded with existentialism; That is, with Sartre and Simon de Beauvoir and others who developed from the German Kierkegaard’s vision, and presented a unique, special and perhaps different thesis about him. The book follows in particular Sartre’s emergence in the French philosophical scene, explaining that existentialism has taken Sartre a different situation and closer to pessimism.

Once again, the French amazed the world with the emergence of great philosophers in the modern era, especially with Michel Foucault, founder of archaeological drilling, Gilles Deleuze and his great conquests, Lévi Strauss, the author of structuralism, Paul Ricoeur with his contributions and deep research, and Jacques Derrida and his deconstructive philosophy. These thinkers had a major role in making conquests significant across the concepts, terminology, and insights they produced.

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