Existentialism Is a Humanism


Jean-Paul Sartre

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Intersubjectivity Term Analysis

Sartre argues that all subjectivity is intersubjectivity. Whenever a person comes to understand their own existence, in the process they must see that “the other is essential to my existence, as well as to the knowledge I have of myself.” Everyone’s individuality—the qualities that make them who they are—is only developed in social relationships with others and it’s only meaningful because others can recognize those qualities. Therefore, Sartre argues, grounding existentialist philosophy in self-awareness does not mean ignoring others’ existence. This allows him to answer the Communist objection that existentialism traps people in their individual consciousness and prevents them from realizing others’ roles in their lives or interests in society.

Intersubjectivity Quotes in Existentialism Is a Humanism

The Existentialism Is a Humanism quotes below are all either spoken by Intersubjectivity or refer to Intersubjectivity. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Existence, Essence and the Human Condition Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Yale University Press edition of Existentialism Is a Humanism published in 2007.
Existentialism Is a Humanism Quotes

Contrary to the philosophy of Descartes, or of Kant, when we say “I think,” we each attain ourselves in the presence of the other, and we are just as certain of the other as we are of ourselves. Therefore, the man who becomes aware of himself directly in the cogito also perceives all others, and he does so as the condition of his own existence. He realizes that he cannot be anything (in the sense in which we say someone is spiritual, or cruel, or jealous) unless others acknowledge him as such.

Page Number: 41
Explanation and Analysis:
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Intersubjectivity Term Timeline in Existentialism Is a Humanism

The timeline below shows where the term Intersubjectivity appears in Existentialism Is a Humanism. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Existentialism Is a Humanism
Existence, Essence and the Human Condition Theme Icon
Radical Freedom, Choice, and Responsibility Theme Icon
...audience and therefore acknowledge the existence of the other. Declaring one’s own existence means entering intersubjectivity, a state in which one recognizes that one’s existence is only confirmed by the presence... (full context)