Ernst Cassirer

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Ernst Cassirer (1874–1945) was a German philosopher. Trained within the Neo-Kantian Marburg School, he initially followed his mentor Hermann Cohen in attempting to supply an idealistic philosophy of science; after Cohen's death, he developed a theory of symbolism, and used it to expand phenomenology of knowledge into a more general philosophy of culture. He is one of the leading 20th century advocates of philosophical idealism.


(in German unless noted)

  • Die Philosophie der Symbolische Formen, 3 vols., Berlin, 1923-29. 1. Die Sprache, 1923; 2. Das mythische Denken, 1925; 3. Phänomenologie der Erkenntnis, 1929.
    • The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms, trans. Ralph Manheim, intro. Charles W. Hendel, Yale University Press, 1953-57. 1. Language, 1953; 2. Mythical Thought, 1955, ARG; 3. The Phenomenology of Knowledge, 1957, PDF/ch 1, PDF/ch 5. (English)
  • Sprache und Mythos – Ein Beitrag zum Problem der Götternamen, 1925; repr. in Wesen und Wirkung des Symbolbegriffs, Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft WBG, 1994, pp 71-158.
    • Language and Myth, trans. Susanne K. Langer, Harper and Brother, 1946; New York: Dover Publications, 1953. (English)
  • Symbol, Technik, Sprache. Aufsätze aus den Jahren 1927–1933, eds. Ernst Wolfgang Orth and John Michael Krois, Hamburg: Meiner, 1985. TOC.
    • "Form und Technik" [1930], pp 39-91.
    • "Form and Technology", trans. Wilson McClelland Dunlavey and John Michael Krois, in Ernst Cassirer on Form and Technology, eds. Aud Sissel Hoel and Ingvild Folkvord, Palgrave Macmillan, 2012, pp 15-53. (English)