Ortega y Gasset

1) Answer any THREE of the nine questions listed below. You may pick three questions from the same chapter or three questions from two different chapters. It’s entirely up to you. These three posts must have a minimum of 100 words each. Anything less will result in a grade of ZERO without the possibility of a make-up post.

2) Post TWO responses to other students’ posts. The response posts must be between 75-100 words. Anything less will result in a grade of ZERO without the possibility of a make-up post.

PLEASE MAKE SURE TO SUBMIT 5 SEPARATE POSTS: DO NOT ANSWER MORE THAN ONE QUESTION IN A SINGLE POST.

QUESTIONS:

Chapter 7: Nietzsche

1. If Nietzsche were alive today, would he describe the contemporary United States as being governed by master morality or slave morality? Explain, and be specific.

2. Do you agree with Nietzsche’s claim that “every elevation of the type ‘man’ has hitherto been the work of an aristocratic society and so it will always be”? Why or why not?

Chapter 8: Ortega y Gasset

3. Do you agree with Ortega’s claim that we are (as of 1929, when he wrote The Revolt of the Masses) living in what he calls a hyperdemocracy? Explain.

4. Who exactly is the “ mass man” according to Ortega? Do you agree with his assertion that “the mass crushes everything different, everything outstanding, excellent, individual, select, and choice”? Is Ortega just a petulant snob, or is he on to something? Explain.

Chapter 9: Sartre

5. What does Sartre mean when he says “existence precedes essence”? Do you think this is a correct characterization of the human condition? Why or why not?

6. Do you agree that if “God does not exist, everything is permitted?” Why or why not?

7. In what sense is existentialism empowering, and in what sense is it burdensome, or even terrifying? Do you see yourself as an existentialist? Why or why not?

Chapter 10: Theodore Dalrymple:

1) According to Dalrymple, what is the fundamental difference between “depression” and “unhappiness”? Are you persuaded by his argument? Why or why not?

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