Existentialism Is a Humanism

by

Jean-Paul Sartre

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When Sartre talks about “a priori morality,” he means a morality that is purely intellectual and could be determined without looking at any concrete evidence or experience from the world. An a priori morality would be unchanging and absolute, set in stone before people’s births, and obligatory regardless of one’s actual circumstances or particular interpretation of the world. This is largely a reference to the German Enlightenment philosopher Immanuel Kant, who spent years searching for such “a priori” rules of morality. Sartre believes such a morality does not and cannot exist.
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