The Philosophical Anthropology of Erich Fromm: The Conscious and the Unconscious in Man

  • The philosophical anthropology of Erich Fromm rests on his analysis of the existential dichotomy, which breaks man’s humanity. When man disobeys God in paradise, he begins to become human. He begins to be free. For Fromm, disobedience is a prerequisite towards freedom. However, there is in him a yearning to go back to paradise to enjoy the >roots of his own nature.< He wants to be secured and taken care by a loving God. This allegory was taken and interpreted by Fromm that man is separated from his own nature. In paradise, he is an animal. He does not possess any reason or freedom as a human being. Physiologically, he does what other creatures do. However, saying >no< to God’s commandment allowed him to become human. He has reason and freedom. He is forced to take the responsibility to build his own humanity. Now, he is torn between two existential nature i.e., his animal nature and human nature. There is no way for him to return to his paradisiacal roots. He has to move on and build his true human nature. For Fromm, this can be done through reason, faith, and love.

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Author:Ian Raymond B. Pacquing
Parent Title (English):Kritike, Vol. 8, pp. 77-97.
Document Type:Articles
Year of first Publication:2014
Release Date:2022/05/04
Format:PDF-file to download
Writings about Erich Fromm (Secondary Literature):Articles / Artikel
Erich Fromm's Library and Erich Fromm Archive:Articles / Artikel
Licence (German):
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