Against Type is a longer essay at Aeon magazine that argues for a range of contributions that a renewed attention to existentialism can make to the psychology and ethics of stereotyping and implicit bias.
Jonathan Webber will be presenting ideas from Rethinking Existentialism at a weekend course in January 2020 in Oxford. The course will feature talks by Kate Kirkpatrick, author of Becoming Beauvoir, an important new philosophical biography being published in August 2019.
There are audio recordings of the talks by Eva Koumpli on psychodrama, Rebecca Pitt on play, and Katherine Morris and Miles Clapham on the lived body, along with a film of the talk by Lennox Thomas on legacies of colonialism.
A draft of chapter 10 is now available to download.
It reconstructs Beauvoir’s argument for the moral requirement of authenticity in Pyrrhus and Cineas.
The argument begins from a premise that, according to existentialism, everyone must accept: that some ends are valuable. It then argues that this commits one to valuing achieved ends as potential means to further ends, which in turn commits one to valuing the capacity to pursue projects.
If the argument is sound, then it derives the imperative to value the structure of human agency, the capacity to pursue projects, from that very structure itself.
The chapter is devoted to clarifying and detailing Beauvoir’s argument for this Kantian moral conclusion. It concludes that this argument for the imperative of authenticity should be taken seriously as a contribution to contemporary moral philosophy.
Please do let me know what you think of the chapter, either by posting in the Comments thread to this news item or sending me an email.