Hans Blumenberg's 100th Birthday

Wednesday | 06/01/21 | 06:00 pm

Hans Blumenberg's 100th Birthday

Discussion with Dr. Rüdiger Zill | 

Author of the book Der absolute Leser: Hans Blumenberg. Eine intellektuelle Biographie (Suhrkamp, 2020)

This year we mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Hans Blumenberg (1920–1996). The many conferences and events planned in honor of one of the most important German philosophers of the second half of the twentieth century were replaced by a series of virtual events. The Spinoza Center at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute is following suit with a conversation between Prof. Pini Ifergan and Dr. Rüdiger Zill, a senior scholar at the Einstein Forum in Potsdam, a well-known scholar of Blumenberg, and the author of the intellectual biography Der absolute Leser: Hans Blumenberg. Eine intellektuelle Biographie (Suhrkamp, 2020).

The theses Blumenberg put forward include metaphorology—his proposal for understanding metaphor through an examination of non-conceptuality—and the fundamental insight that the understanding of myth depends on its reception history. Some of these ideas have already become part of the theoretical body of knowledge in the human sciences. His wide-ranging oeuvre is also known in Israel: His critique of the category of secularization and his interpretation of modernity are an integral part of the local discussion of secularization and secularism. Even if his systematic attempt to develop philosophical anthropology has not yet established a foothold in Israel, it makes him, in the view of many, the articulator of one of the most important philosophical alternatives of our time. But who was the man himself? What is his life story and what is the context in which his philosophy developed? Zill’s book answers these questions well and in so doing enables us to draw a fuller picture of Blumenberg the man and his philosophy—but also to achieve a deeper understanding of his remarkable philosophical oeuvre.


Dr. Rüdiger Zill, Einstein Forum, Potsdam

Hosted by:

Prof. Pini Ifergan, Spinoza Center, the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute; Philosophy Department, Bar-Ilan University

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