Sartre's Existentialism

“Existentialism is a Humanism” is based on a lecture that Sartre gave in Paris on Monday, October 29, 1945. This short exposition is the perfect student’s guide to existential thought in philosophy. For Sartre, existentialism is primarily defined by the idea that “existence precedes essence (22).” At the start of his lecture, he discusses how objects are manufactured with a pre-determined purpose or “essence” in mind thus, their essence precedes their existence. He states that many people’s conceptions of God is like that of an artesian, producing man with an inherent essence. Sartre claims the reverse is true for humans, first they are created and then determine their essence through their actions. “We mean that man first exists: he materializes

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