Some Views On Sartre Essay, Research Paper
1. Existence Precedes Essence/ Subjectivity is the Starting Point
o Freedom for Self
o You are the center of your own value system
o As a free agent, you spin your web
o You are thrown in to the world, then you create yourself, your nature, your essence
o Atheistic view of self and how we exist: it gives no explanation for who we are as because of a higher power
o There is no soul that existed before one is born and will live on after one dies; there is just humans as matter
o We are created as matter/ nature, just like any other animals: only then after we exist do we distinguish ourselves apart from other creatures, and that makes us human.
2. Complete Responsibility over Self
o Because we are free agents and we make ourselves who we are, we therefore have a responsibility for ourselves.
o If we have total freedom for who we become, then we are completely responsible for every action we do
o This total responsibility for self can cause anguish or forlorness
o This anguish is due to the anxiety one feels when he/she realizes there are no absolute values or absolute right and wrong when every person is responsible for themselves, and no one else is responsible for them
o Everything you are is completely on your shoulders, so when one does something, it is their responsibility and consequence to face, it is no one else’s doing
o In response to the feeling of anguish or forlorness, sometimes it can cause bad faith
o Bad faith is when there are no absolute values, one can do whatever they want, and only they are responsible, no one judge or say it is wrong
3. Responsibility for Humanity
o If you are responsible for self, you are also responsible for all human people
o When you choose for self, it automatically chooses for all persons
o This adds to anguish or forlorness and creates a very pessimistic view: human is condemned to be free.
o The decisions that you make create a value system for all humanity
o If you want to be a generous person, then you are affirming generosity for all humanity to live up to.
o This responsibility for humanity shows that one does have consequences for their actions because it affects all other people
o It is a standard image of value: if one makes a decision, then they are making the decision for everyone else
4. Because ones existence precedes their essence, one is completely responsible for him or herself, and in turn is also completely responsible for humanity