Header

Hans Blumenberg

The Rigorism of Truth - »Moses the Egyptian« and other Texts on Freud and Arendt

Edited, with commentary and an afterword by Ahlrich Meyer
(German title: Rigorismus der Wahrheit)
ca. 192 pages
Paperback
2015
Hans Blumenberg
Foto: Hans Blumenberg
© Peter Zollna

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

Sold to

English world rights (Cornell UP)

»There is no such thing as a love of truth. Perhaps because such a thing cannot exist.«

About

»Moses the Egyptian« is an essay by Hans Blumenberg, in which he engages with two of the defining thinkers of the 20th Century: Sigmund Freud and Hannah Arendt. Written at the end of the 1980s and preserved in a folder marked »Forbidden Fragments«, the essay is one of the most spectacular texts in Blumenberg’s posthumous œuvre.

Blumenberg begins with Freud’s late work, Moses and Monotheism (1939), which he describes as his »last great insult to mankind in the guise of those who have suffered the most«, before proceeding to an incomparably trenchant critique of Arendt and her book, Eichmann in Jerusalem. In both cases Blumenberg identifies a certain rigorism at work, which is employed in the name of the truth but which lapses into ruthlessness due to its blindness to the political and deafness to the incomprehensible. »Just as Freud took Moses away from his people, Hannah Arendt takes Adolf Eichmann away from the State of Israel« – as Blumenberg writes in one of the many remarkable conclusions he draws in this dense text, which also provides a glimpse of the philosopher’s attitudes to Judaism and Zionism.

»Moses the Egyptian« is published here in its entirety for the first time, along with commentary by the editor and other unpublished texts on related topics.

Praise

»The Rigorism of Truth, now published by Suhrkamp, has been edited with great care by Ahlrich Meyer. Which is a good thing, as it covers a sensitive subject and confronts the reader with, in regards to Blumenberg, the unexpected.« der Freitag

»Blumenberg’s text, with his affirmation of the redeeming quality of mythical thinking and acting which humans need in order to ease the burden of the absolutism of reality, is insofar consistent as he proves his thesis of the subjectivity of ›truth‹ brilliantly.« Neue Zürcher Zeitung am Sonntag

Other publications

Die nackte Wahrheit/The Naked Truth (2019)

Sold to:

France (Seuil), Korea (Ghil)

Domestic Rights Sales: German Audiobook (bäng)

Präfiguration/Prefiguration (2014)

Sold to:

Italy (Morcelliana), France (Seuil)

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

Sold to:

Spanish world rights (Fondo de Cultura Economica), Turkey (Ketebe)

Löwen/Lions (2010)

Sold to:

English world rights (Seagull), France (Klincksieck)

Domestic Rights Sales: German Audiobook (bäng)

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

Sold to:

Spanish world rights (Fondo de Cultura Economica), Chinese simplex rights (China Legal Publishing House)

Geistesgeschichte der Technik/Geistesgeschichte der Technik (2009)

Sold to:

Spanish world rights (Pre-Textos), Italy (Mimesis), Korea (Ghil)

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

Sold to:

France (du Cerf), Italy (Laterza)

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

Sold to:

Spanish world rights (Pre-Textos), France (Editions du Felin), Italy (Mimesis)

Theorie der Unbegrifflichkeit/Theorie der Unbegrifflichkeit (2007)

Sold to:

Brazilian Portuguese rights (UFMG), Catalan rights (Papers Amb Accent), France (Editions de l'Eclat), Italy (duepunti Edizioni), Turkey (Ketebe)

Beschreibung des Menschen/Description of Man (2006)

Sold to:

Spanish world rights (Fondo de Cultura Economica), France (du Cerf)

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

Sold to:

English world rights (MIT), Spanish world rights (Pre-Textos), Chinese simplex rights (The Commercial Press), Brazilian Portuguese rights (Via Veritas), Arabic world rights (Arab Network for Research and Publishing), France (Gallimard), Italy (Marietti), Korea (Saemulgyul), Japan (Hosei UP), Serbia (Zoran Stojanovic)

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

Sold to:

Brazilian Portuguese rights (Editora UFMG), France (Cerf), Italy (Il Mulino), Korea (Saemulgyul); previously published in the respective language / territory; rights available again: Spanish world rights (Paidos Iberica), Japan (Hosei UP), Romania (Tact), Ukraine (Libra)

Arbeit am Mythos/Work on Myth (1979)

Sold to:

English world rights (MIT Press), Spanish world rights (Paidos), Chinese simplex rights (Horizon), Japan (Hosei UP), Poland (Oficyna Naukowa), Croatia (Sandorf); previously published in the respective language / territory; rights available again: Italy (Il Mulino)

Schiffbruch mit Zuschauer/Shipwreck with Spectator (1979)

Sold to:

English world rights (MIT Press), France (L'Arche), Sweden (Faethon), Korea (Saemulgyul), Hungary (Atlantisz), Slovenia (Krtina), Turkey (Alfa), Greece (Antipodes), Israel (Shalem Press); previously published in the respective language / territory; rights available again: Spanish world rights (A. Machado Libros), Italy (Il Mulino), Netherlands (Historische Uitgeverij), Japan (Tetsugako Shobo)