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Title: Un’etica dell’aggressività: considerazioni sul pensiero di Arnold Gehlen
Authors: Rasini, Vallori
Keywords: GehlenLorenzEibl-Eibensfeld
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Vallori Rasini, "Un’etica dell’aggressività: considerazioni sul pensiero di Arnold Gehlen", in: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics, XI (2009) 2, pp. 399-411.
Series/Report no.: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics
XI (2009) 2
Arnold Gehlen, one of the major representatives of contemporary Philosophical Anthropology
in Germany, was a staunch conservative and a supporter of the Nazi Regime. In accordance
with recent ethological studies carried out between the 50s and the 60s, particularly
by Konrad Lorenz and Irenäus Eibl-Eibensfeld, Gehlen gave a new value of instinct in human
behaviour. A decisive role was attributed especially to aggressive impulses. Human beings
are biologically defective and they can survive only with a particular strategy: they
have to act to change the conditions of their natural life, and aggressive impulses, translated
into work and self-assertion, are a warranty of good outcome. According to Gehlen, aggressiveness
is necessary, but also problematic, because it needs to be expressed. Contemporary
Western societies are characterized by high comfort and little hard work; democracy does
not need violent fights, and aggressiveness is repressed. Ultimately, concludes Gehlen, these
Societies are founded on principles that produce a decadent culture which, in its turn, leads
to non stabilized situations. Therefore he forebode the return of the virtues of war and
those of strong States based on hierarchical organizations. What he seems to propose, then,
is an aggressive government for an aggressive nature.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1825-5167
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2009) XI /2

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