14/12/2021

Exploring the Underground Writings of Jan Patočka: War and the Fate of Europe

This is the sixth lecture of the series. In his sixth and final essay, Patočka asks, what was “that awesome will which for years drove millions of humans into a fiery furnace”? He is referring to the First World War, a “monumental auto-da-fé” which led, nightmarishly, to a Second World War – and ultimately, to what he calls “the definitive collapse of Europe.” His basic conclusion is that Europe has failed to grasp “the will to war,” because it is not a phenomenon of what he calls the “day.” European philosophy must face the reality of the human “night.” It is rational to honour the limits of the rational in human life, and Patočka is unconvinced that postwar Europeans had so honoured them – or could, since they held a progressive philosophy of history that his Heretical Essays seek to correct.

Danube Institute present

Exploring the Underground Writings
of

Jan Patočka:
War and the Fate of Europe

David L. Dusenbury pic..jpg

Lecture by Dr. David L. Dusenbury, Visiting Fellow at Danube Institute,
Respondent Dimitry Kochenov, Central European University
Introduced by John O’Sullivan, President of Danube Institute

Date: December 14, 2021
 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.


Venue: Scruton DOWNTOWN (1054 Budapest, Zoltán utca 10.)

Dr. David L. Dusenbury:

David is a Visiting Fellow at the Danube Institute. He obtained his doctorate in philosophy from the University of Leuven and held, most recently, a research fellowship at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His books include Platonic Legislations and The Innocence of Pontius Pilate. He has lectured widely in Europe on topics in philosophy, religion, law, and the history of ideas. His essays and criticism have appeared in The Times Literary Supplement, Corriere della Serra, American Affairs, and other cultural and political reviews.

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