2018-03Thematic Section
Cassirer: The Coming of a New Humanism


The various efforts to put the idea of humanity on a secure ethical, political, and social base have not succeeded. The various post-humanist and transhumanist programs are inadequate. Our deep-seated suspicion of our deepest selves and motives is understandable in light of the barbarity of the twentieth century, but humanism is not to blame. The thought of Ernst Cassirer holds a framework for a new humanism, once it is rid of certain colonialist, triumphalist, and Eurocentric ideas that distorted Cassirer’s understanding of the European role in creating the problems of civilization, especially its mistake of thinking that science was a progressive symbolic form of culture. I set out the basis of a new humanism based upon not the problem of knowledge, but the problem of genuine self-situating socialty, a personalist point of view.


Cassirer, post-humanism, humanism, culture, symbolic form, genocide, science, pragmatism, personalism

How to cite:

Auxier, Randall E. “Cassirer: The Coming of a New Humanism.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 2, no. 3(5) (2018): 7–26. https://doi.org/10.26319/5812.


Randall E. Auxier
Department of Philosophy, Department of Communication Studies, Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Faner Hall, Mail Code 4505, 980 Faner Drive, Carbondale, IL 62901, USA


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