Karl Jaspers‘ Idea of University

Bojda Martin


This study focuses on the nature, basis, changes, and reception of the
concept of the “idea of university” by one of the leading German philosophers
of the 20th century, Karl Jaspers, who ranked for over half a century among
the sharp, and often controversial, widely accepted analysts of political life in
Germany and Europe, and that namely in relation to the theory, development,
and institutional and social integration of science and philosophical thought.
The study concentrates on the ideological sources and limits of the impact
and validity of Jasper’s concept of university reform, and on the mission and
essence of science in the period after the First and Second World Wars in the
contexts of German social-political discussions in the sixties, i. e. especially in
the contexts of the three versions of his work “The Idea of University” (1923,
1946, and 1961). Attention is paid to Jasper’s foundation of the specifics and
of the efforts of scientific knowledge and research in his philosophy of existence
and epistemology, as well as to his differentiation of science and philosophy
and of science and faith. The thematisation of Jaspers’ definition of rationality
and of freedom as the fundamentals of a specific European culture tries to
take into consideration the importance and topicality of such reflections, as
well as showing together with Jaspers the necessity of its systematic-theoretical


Jaspers, Karl; university; science; philosophy; freedom

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Vydání: 18, 2016, 3