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Hans Blumenberg

Description of Man

(German title: Beschreibung des Menschen)
ca. 656 pages
Clothbound
2006
Hans Blumenberg
Foto: Hans Blumenberg
© Peter Zollna

Hans Blumenberg (1920-1996) was professor for Philosophy at the University of Münster.

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About

In Blumenberg’s new standard work, reflection takes human visibility as its starting point and thus enables a focus on the body and on consciousness. In this »description of man«, phenomenology also clarifies the conditions for its own existence as a discipline.

Hans Blumenberg’s anthropology is a prime philosophical discovery. For many years now, many have expected and urged publication of an edited version from the papers found in his estate. And it starts with a simple hypothesis, but one that has major consequences: The human being is visible. That is the key sentence in Hans Blumenberg’s phenomenological anthropology. Among the primates, it is only homo sapiens that stands enduringly erect and walks; which is why homo sapiens is particularly good at two things: seeing and being seen. The relationship between man and world derived from the fact that the human being is exposed in this way, and this also means: Humans are forever staging themselves, to the point of opacity – for others and for themselves. Visibility provokes self-reference. And thus leads to reflection. The theoretical red thread running through Hans Blumenberg’s anthropology, which draws on a wealth of material, is its phenomenological thrust. Here, Blumenberg is constantly siding in philosophically with Husserl against Heidegger, prioritizing ‘theory’ against ‘concern’.

Other publications

Die nackte Wahrheit/The Naked Truth (2019)

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Rigorismus der Wahrheit/The Rigorism of Truth (2015)

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Präfiguration/Prefiguration (2014)

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Italy (Morcelliana), France (Seuil)

Quellen, Ströme, Eisberge/Sources, Streams, Icebergs (2012)

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Löwen/Lions (2010)

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Theorie der Lebenswelt/Theory of the Life-World (2010)

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Geistesgeschichte der Technik/Geistesgeschichte der Technik (2009)

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Briefwechsel 1971-1978/Correspondence and other materials (2007)

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Der Mann vom Mond/The Man from the Moon (2007)

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Theorie der Unbegrifflichkeit/Theorie der Unbegrifflichkeit (2007)

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Die Legitimität der Neuzeit/The Legitimacy of the Modern Age (1996)

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Die Lesbarkeit der Welt/The Legibility of the World (1986)

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Arbeit am Mythos/Work on Myth (1979)

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Schiffbruch mit Zuschauer/Shipwreck with Spectator (1979)

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