Ernst Cassirer Essay On Man

It is hard not to think, as one reads a book so wealthy as this in historic and scientific erudition, but at the same time so oddly inconclusive, that Cassirer was rather a distinguished reflective scholar than a great speculative philosopher.The learning is not mobilized in the interest of any theory; the book is not so much an essay on man as a series of essays, all suggestive and enlightening, which converge onwhat? Perhaps there is no end, or harmony of ends, toward which all these activities are moving.Some twenty years ago he published a massive work in three volumes on The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms, which has never been translated.

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Ernst Cassirer Essay On Man Researched Argument Essay Example

Technically speaking, he had been for many years and in various countries a refugee. His cosmopolitanism, his gracious-ness, and his rare gift for language made him quickly at home in any land.

The centerpiece of Cassirer's thought is his theory of symbolic forms.

He construed representation, the ground of symbolic form, to be essentially symbolic, fusing perceptual materials with conceptual meanings.

Great learning requires much rapid registry of facts and a mind attentive to detail.

Speculative depth requires much abstraction from detail, much leisurely rumination, the persistent, patient exploration of numberless wandering paths.


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