Agnes Heller

hellerAgnes Heller, a Hungarian philosopher who was, for a while, the Hannah Arendt Visiting Professor of Philosophy in the Graduate Studies Program of The New School in New York, will receive the 2014 Wallenberg Medal, an award bestowed annually at the University of Michigan “to a humanitarian who has devoted his or her life in service to others.” Heller is a Holocaust survivor.

While Agnes and her mother avoided deportation, her father was sent to Auschwitz, where he died. She also lost many childhood friends in that terrible time. Heller has said the Holocaust “exercised an immense influence on my whole life, particularly on my work,” and she believes she has “a debt to pay as a survivor.” Her experiences during World War II led her to question the fundamental philosophical source of morality and evil in people and what kind of a world can allow horrific events like the Holocaust.

Heller spoke out vigorously for autonomy and self-determination after the suppression of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. “My experience of the Holocaust was joined with my experience of the totalitarian regime,” she said. Both raised similar questions in what she calls her “soul search and world investigation. … I had to find out what morality was all about.”

More here

.

One thought on “Agnes Heller

  1. We, the anonymous consumers and taxpayers can’t afford to bow out of our moral duty to engage in a just civil society. We can’t afford to turn away from the shadow of the abuse of power-over. We do not gain anything by choosing to be ignorant.

    Like

Please join the discussion!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s