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Title: Perché un’antropologia filosofica: le motivazioni di Helmuth Plessner
Authors: Vallori, Rasini
Keywords: DualismPlessnerHeidegger
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Vallori Rasini, "Perché un’antropologia filosofica: le motivazioni di Helmuth Plessner", in: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics, XII (2010) 2, pp. 164-177.
Series/Report no.: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics
XII (2010) 2
Philosophical anthropology flourished in Germany in the early 20th century and seeked to
recover the unity of human nature, thus opposing dualistic tendencies in philosophy and
science. Helmuth Plessner was one of the most important exponents of this line of
thought. In the development of western thought, from Descartes to Heidegger, Plessner
finds the maturity for a new philosophical study of the human being. According to Plessner,
Heidegger’s in-depth analyses of human nature are not sufficient. Life is not only “existence”
(in Heidegger’s sense). Due to his overriding interest in the ontology of Dasein,
Heidegger takes no account of concrete life, which is always mingled with a body. Existence
can be defined only once life has been defined. Life anticipates and contains existence,
thus linking human beings with any other organism. Accordingly, life is the best
ground in which the principle of human specificity can be rooted. Nevertheless, it is true
that a new, respectable anthropology shouldn’t be dogmatist and shouldn’t frame absolute
concepts. Rather, it has to reflect openly upon human sciences, without claiming for
supermacy. In Plessner’s opinion, the human being remained essentially inscrutable.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1825-5167
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2010) XII/2

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