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Entgegnung auf Gómez Dávila

Eberhard Geisler


Pages 331 - 351



This essay offers a polemical engagement with the aphoristic writings of the Columbian author Nicolás Gómez Dávila. While responses to his work in German-speaking countries have thus far come exclusively from counter-enlightenment critics and have been positive, this essay emphasises the questionable reactionary nature of Gómez Dávila’s positions. The Columbian writer is in thrall to the order of feudal society, rejects democracy and maintains scholastic attitudes in matters of business ethics. As a contrast to his conservative theological ideas, the present essay calls to mind a modern philosopher like Max Stirner, who defended the ideas of responsibility and the autonomy of man. The essay then goes on to problematise the relation of the author to his genre of the aphorism; his appropriation of Montaigne; his interpretation of Romanticism and complete disregard for the form of translation; his references to Plato which ignore more recent criticism; his thinking along the lines of sets of values which was convincingly criticised by Heidegger; and his rejection of all heterogeneity, modern art and literature as well as women’s equality.

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