Jean-Paul Sartre biography
Jean-Paul Sartre was a French philosopher, playwright, and writer. Sartre was one of the most famous and influential thinkers of his time. The works of Sartre combine literary and philosophical views. In his early philosophical writings, he focuses on emotions, imagination and the nature of personality. His works also influenced and continue to influence sociology, critical theory, postcolonial theory and literary criticism.
Jean-Paul Sartre was born in 1905 in Paris, France. The boy's father, Jean Baptiste Sartre, was an officer of the French Navy. Mother, Anne-Marie Schweitzer, came from a family of famous scientists. After the death of the head of the family, Anne-Marie took her young son to the house of his grandfather, Charles Schweitzer. This authoritative Calvinist not only replaced Jean-Paul the deceased father but also saw the giftedness of the boy hidden deep inside. Grandfather took his grandson from a school and hired him the best teachers. For several years, the boy lived in seclusion, devoting all his time to studying. His life changed in 1917 with the new mother's marriage, after which Jean-Paul left for La Rochelle.
Sartre received education at the lycées of La Rochelle, graduated from the École normale supérieur) in Paris with a Ph.D. in philosophy. Then he served in the army, taught (1931-1933) in the gymnasium, during the year studied the phenomenology of Husserl at the Institut français d'Allemagne in Berlin, and from 1934 to 1939, was again a gymnasium teacher. At this time, Sartre began work on his own works, which he began to publish in 1936. In 1937, his work The Transcendence of the Ego appeared. It anticipated most of the ideas of further Sartre's philosophy. Since 1944, he devoted himself entirely to literary work. Sartre's literary activity began with the novel Nausea (La Nausée, 1938).
By many critics, this novel is considered the best work of Sartre. In it he rises to the deepest ideas of the Gospel, but from atheistic positions. During the Second World War, Sartre spent nine months in a prisoner of war camp. He became an active participant in the resistance, wrote for underground publications. During the occupation, he published his main philosophical work - Being and Nothingness (L'Être et le néant, 1943). The main purpose of the book was to prove that the existence of a person is primary in relation to its essence.
During his student years he met Simone de Beauvoir, who became not just a companion of his life, but also a like-minded person. Together with Simone de Beauvoir and Maurice Merleau-Ponty, he founded the magazine Modern Times (Les Temps Modernes). He was a peace advocate at the Vienna Congress of The Peoples for Peace in 1952, in 1953 he was elected a member of the World Peace Council.
Sartre showed a keen interest in Marxism, although after careful study of Marxist philosophy he came to the conclusion that this is not a truly scientific theory, but only a revolutionary myth. Sartre sometimes criticized the Soviet regime. As a voluntarist he was much closer to the Maoist version of communism. He admired the Chinese "cultural revolution", hoping that it will make a revolution in the human mind. In 1964, Jean-Paul Sartre was awarded the Nobel Prize. The writer refused to accept the prize, explaining this by the fact that this award had political meaning and included him in the bourgeois elite, while he always opposed the bourgeoisie. In the late 1960s, during the Vietnam War, Sartre became chairman of the anti-war tribunal created by another prominent Western left-wing representative Bertrand Russell.
Among the later works of Sartre were The Condemned of Altona (1960), the philosophical work Critique of Dialectical Reason (1960), The Words (1964), his autobiography. In the last years of his life, he was blinded by glaucoma and could no longer write. His wife read him, and he willingly gave numerous interviews. Jean-Paul Sartre died on April 15, 1980.