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date: 24 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Being human and engaging in philosophy are interdependent if not identical. In one direction, to engage in philosophy is to think about what it is to be human. Kant bequeathed this view to his successors when he claimed that philosophy could be reduced to what he called anthropology: the study of what it is to be human. In the other direction, the conviction that being human is to engage in philosophy has been expressed in various ways, from Hegel to Heidegger. The central insight here is that humans share a characteristic and peculiar form of being, one that is both able and constrained to question that being. The deepest expression of this tenet, as it operates in both directions in continental philosophy, is to be found in the writings of Heidegger, and specifically the anthropology of Being and Time and other works of the same period.

Keywords: philosophy, Kant, anthropology, Hegel, Heidegger

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