At the Existentialist Cafe: Freedom, Being, and Apricot Cocktails by Sarah BakewellParis, near the turn of 1933. Three young friends meet over apricot cocktails at the Bec-de-Gaz bar on the rue Montparnasse. They are Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir and their friend Raymond Aron, who opens their eyes to a radical new way of thinking. Pointing to his drink, he says, You can make philosophy out of this cocktail!
From this moment of inspiration, Sartre will create his own extraordinary philosophy of real, experienced life–of love and desire, of freedom and being, of cafes and waiters, of friendships and revolutionary fervour. It is a philosophy that will enthral Paris and sweep through the world, leaving its mark on post-war liberation movements, from the student uprisings of 1968 to civil rights pioneers.
At the Existentialist Cafe tells the story of modern existentialism as one of passionate encounters between people, minds and ideas. From the ‘king and queen of existentialism–Sartre and de Beauvoir–to their wider circle of friends and adversaries including Albert Camus, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Iris Murdoch, this book is an enjoyable and original journey through a captivating intellectual movement. Weaving biography and thought, Sarah Bakewell takes us to the heart of a philosophy about life that also changed lives, and that tackled the biggest questions of all: what we are and how we are to live.
At the Existentialist Caf Freedom Being and Apricot Cocktails with Jean Paul Sartre Simone de Beauvo
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We need to know about an author to appreciate her book, but I love that Bakewell, a brit, is also a PhD dropout actually she dropped out of college twice. Thank the existential void she did, otherwise she would have been sucked into the academic void and never heard from again, except in stuffy academic journals no one every reads, where she would have had to publish or perish. Instead, by writing for the real world, she is able write like a real person, bringing her super-, and-encyclopedic-, knowledge to showing how philosophy, or at least she would argue existentialism, is both a practical and needful way of living in the world. Or should be. Towards the beginning of the book she give a run down on the basics:.
Paris, near the turn of Three young friends meet over apricot cocktails at the Bec-de-Gaz bar on the rue Montparnasse. They are Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone.
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From Left Bank to left behind: where have the great French thinkers gone?
But the signature drinks only appear at the beginning and briefly at the end of this book. In the winter of , Bakewell recounts, three young thinkers, Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Raymond Aron were sitting in a bar in Paris drinking the house cocktail. Aron had been studying in Berlin and had come under the influence of a new philosophical fashion there. It was the first seed of existentialism. It turns out that existentialism, synonymous with Paris, jazz, black turtlenecks and Gauloises, had a German father after all. Aron is a minor figure, fading away after dropping his bombshell, while de Beauvoir and Sartre remain ensconced at the centre table. Bakewell has a wonderful skill in expressing complex ideas in simple terms.