April 15, 2021

The figure of María Zambrano, philosopher, essayist and promoter of civic engagement

The figure of María Zambrano, philosopher, essayist and promoter of civic engagement


"I prefer a dangerous freedom to a quiet servitude". Thinker, essayist and Spanish philosopher, as today, 28 years ago, María Zambrano died, one of the most influential women of contemporary Spanish thought of the twentieth century, despite not getting the recognition it deserved in our country until the last quarter of a century. Despite this, she was awarded the Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities, in 1981, and the Cervantes Prize, in 1988, the two most important literary awards.

María Zambrano, disciple of José Ortega y Gasset and Xavier ZubiriHe focused his philosophy on solving everyday problems of life, based on moral and ethical principles and forms of behavior, being the human being as his own fundamental problem, establishing a dialogue between the being and the surrounding environment. In all his work, his civic engagement and poetic thought. For Zambrano, there were two attitudes: philosophy, coming from chaos and emptiness, is question, instead, the poetry, coming from calm and directed to bring order to chaos, is response. Hence the concept of poetic reason, influenced by Ortega y Gasset himself, the appropriate method to achieve the creation of the person. "A philosopher is the man in whom intimacy rises to a rational category, his sentimental conflicts, his encounter with the world, is resolved and transformed into a theory".

Born in Malaga in 1904He spent a large part of his life outside of Spain until he returned 1983, to settle in Madrid until the day of his death. He collaborated with the Republic but, after the outbreak of Civil War, he had to go into exile, What led him to be in many countries such as Mexico and Puerto Rico, where he worked in universities in both countries, in Cuba and also in France and Italy, which resulted in him coming in contact with many intellectuals of the time such as Octavio Paz, Albert Camus or Rafael Alberti. He also interacted with some members of the Generation of 27, like Miguel Hernández or Luis Cernuda. Man and the divine, Dreams and time and Philosophy and poetry, they are some of his most important works. The dreams of María Zambrano, an article of José Luis López Aranguren, published in 1966, promoted its recognition in our country. "Is it any wonder that love has almost always preferred the poetic to philosophical course?"

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