At the Existentialist Café - Chapter 2 Summary & Analysis

Sarah Bakewell
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Summary

Though Sartre went to Berlin, phenomenology actually began in Freiburg-im-Bresgua, a German college town. It was a religious city, with a university containing a flourishing philosophy department. The chair of the department was Edmund Husserl. As a child, Husserl seemed quiet and unstudious. Later, however, he embraced mathematics and philosophy under the guidance of Franz Clemens Brentano, an ex-priest who studied experimental psychology.

At the university, Husserl escaped his depression through obsessive writing and teaching, and gained quite a following. He had a very unique way of gesticulating as he spoke, as if an idea were being held in his palm and he was turning it in every which way so that he and whoever he was speaking to could perceive the idea from every possible angle. This movement was almost a compulsion. Husserl loved to focus on whatever felt the most confusing and...

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This section contains 1,028 words
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Buy the At the Existentialist Caf Study Guide
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