Free Daily Reads 2022: Article 202

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Being and drunkenness: how to party like an existentialist


Article Summary

The article at issue talks about Jean Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir with respect to their partying habits, and links those habits to the core philosophy endorsed by these people, existentialism. The author recounts that even though these people’s existentialism said that nothing was meaningful or joyful in life, they still obtained joy from partying intensely. They gave various reasons for their indulgence in such hedonism, one of them being the fact that parties bring you closer to people, and cultivating relationships is a big part of what makes life worthy. Sartre and Beauvoir did face criticism for helping propagate hedonistic lifestyles, but they clarified that for them, the act of partying also contained restraints. They vowed to not get so carried away by the celebrations that all work took a backseat, they vowed to not give in to trends and make the partying more about people’s gazes than about themselves, and they also made sure that they were not partying to avoid facing life’s problems instead of taking action. To them, all action – partying and the health problems that arose from abusing addictive substances when partying – could be taken in stride if it came of personal volition.

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Words to learn from the article:

Angst: deep bitterness, grief or fear.

Existentialist: somebody that is a proponent of or believer in existentialism, the philosophy that values independent agency the most in the whole universe.

Stance: take or view with regard to an issue having multiple polarities.

Imaginative: innovative and thoughtful.

Gratuitous: something which had a bare minimum or no need.

Materialism: an excessive importance placed on worldly goods that can be bought with money instead of on spiritual development.

Stagnating: unchanging in pace and position.


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