Med.Inter.Rev. 2016, 106, 51-58.

The concept of ‘vitanity’ as an alternative to the concept of humanism in the human sciences. On the necessity for a criticism of humanism based on a psychoanalytical and cultural theory

LINK Pierre-C.

Research Assistant, Academic Project Inclusion, Chair of Special Education V – Education for People with Emotional and Behavioural Disorders, Institute for Special Education, Faculty of Human Sciences, University of Würzburg, Wittelsbacherplatz 1, D-97070 Würzburg (Germany)

The following article critically reflects on the term ‘humanism’ for human medicine and humanistic education. From a psychoanalytic and cultural theory perspective, criticism is directed at the term ‘humanism’. The concept of vitanity is presented and developed as an alternative. Physicians, psychotherapists and educators are not only advocates of suffering and vulnerable subjects and society, but they are also, and this is their critical and sometimes distanced position to the first two advocacies, also advocates of life and living in general. Vitanity means life-world orientation. With this paper, the author also makes a plea for a discourse of vulnerability and vitanity in (and within) the human sciences. Mankind is not the crown of creation, he is not the master in his own house as Freud would say. Man is a fragile and vulnerable subject like all living things on our planet.

Keywords: Humanism, humanity, vitanity, human sciences, philosophy of medicine, cultural philosophy, humanistic education

Oryginal language: English

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