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Whitehead’s Metaphysics, Nihilism and Existentialism. Grendel Chapters 5 and 6. Metaphysics. Concerned with being and the world Ontology-the categories of being and how they relate to each other Cosmology-the study of the universe – its nature, origin, dynamics, structure. Whitehead.

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Presentation Transcript
metaphysics
Metaphysics
  • Concerned with being and the world
  • Ontology-the categories of being and how they relate to each other
  • Cosmology-the study of the universe – its nature, origin, dynamics, structure
whitehead
Whitehead
  • Alfred North Whitehead-(1861-1947) mathematician/philosopher
    • brought new attention to metaphysics
  • We apply meaning – the “thing” does not
  • “fallacy of misplaced concreteness”-the “real” things are merely abstractions
    • All things change by the second/all things have experience
nihilism
Nihilism
  • Life has no meaning – it’s almost a cruel joke
  • Nothing matters because the world and people have…
    • No purpose
    • No truth
    • No value
nietzsche
Nietzsche
  • Friedrich Nietzsche – (1844-1900) German academic with a fantastic mustache
  • Most famous nihilist
  • “God is dead”
  • Negative connotations when everything is negated
  • Saw Christianity as nihilistic because it focuses on an after-life
the dragon
The Dragon
  • Negates The Shaper’s stories
  • Omniscient – all-knowing
  • Gives Grendel purpose, though he clearly views people’s understanding of the universe as flawed, in that they have no purpose.
  • Materialistic/nihilistic – echoes Nietzsche’s position that God is dead
existentialism
Existentialism
  • Existence precedes essence
    • An individual acts alone
    • Is not influenced by societal labels, stereotypes, etc.
    • Creates his/her own essence
    • Free will… to an extent
existentialism1
Existentialism
  • Life has no meaning … the individual gives it meaning
  • Related to nihilism, but more positive (to me)
  • The Absurd: anything can happen to anyone
  • Facticity: giving meaning to facts of one’s life… letting those facts define him
  • Authenticity, Despair, Angst
jean paul sartre
Jean-Paul Sartre
  • First person to call himself an “existentialist”
  • We are “condemned to be free”
  • “human nature” isn’t a thing – we are responsible
  • Being and Nothingness
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