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Levels of Organic Life and the Human – An Introduction to Philosophical Anthropology - Fordham Scholarship Online
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Levels of Organic Life and the Human: An Introduction to Philosophical Anthropology

Helmuth Plessner


Phenomenology, biology, and the human sciences combine in this work to support an original systematic philosophy of nature, organic life, and human existence. A sequence of increasingly complex modes of boundary relations—or relations between the insides and outsides of a thing—is presented and analyzed. The sequence supports distinctions between living and nonliving things, plants and animals, lower animals and higher ones, and nonhuman animals and humans. “Organic life” is defined and its characteristic features—the “organic modals”—are elucidated. The boundary relations of living things can ... More

Keywords: animal, boundary, excentricity, human, life, phenomenology, philosophical anthropology, philosophy, plant, positionality

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780823283996
Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2020 DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823283996.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Helmuth Plessner, author