The Philosophy of Karl Jaspers
Volume IX in the Library of Living Philosophers
Edited by Paul A. Schilpp
Karl Jaspers created a uniquely humanistic existentialism. The depth and breadth of his philosophy is awesome. He was a psychopathologist, a philosophical anthropologist, and a political scientist. During his life he opened new avenues of thought in the philosophy of history, philosophy of religion, and literary criticism.
Hannah Arendt, Walter Kaufmann, Paul Ricoeur, and Jean Wahl are among the 24 scientists and scholars who examine every major aspect of Jaspers' work in this book. It is a tribute to Jaspers that they all address their criticism to him directly--as though he were in the room with them. For the reader this means that Jaspers' thought is transmitted as an animating force.
Death, suffering, chance, guilt, struggle, and the insight that "man is always more than what he knows or can know" are the themes Jaspers handled with scientific dexterity. He transformed philosophy into a systematic exposition of human nature, while creating a viable matrix for future ideas.