Jean Paul Sartre Being And Nothingness Analysis

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In the post of World War II, Jean-Paul Sartre – philosopher and novelist – became one of the most influential men of the 1900’s. His novel, Being and Nothingness, written in 1943, provides an analysis of his internal views of philosophy, and initially helped in sparking one of the most influential philosophical movements. Within the text, Sartre examines and presents many concepts of existentialism. Those concepts included, but are not limited to, freedom, responsibility, and relationships with others. Possibly the most intense concept that sprouted from his view was that of Bad faith. Bad faith is the term coined by Sartre where one acts with “cynical consciousness” through striving towards inauthenticity by attempting to flee from freedom…show more content…
An example of in-itself bad faith Sartre uses is that of a woman who has consented to go out with a man (Sartre 96). The woman is fully aware of the man’s intentions of her, and she will eventually have to commit to responsibility and make a decision, but she wants to postpone this inevitability. She dismisses compliments by disarming them of their “sexual background” through the night, which are initial acts of bad faith. Later on in the evening the man lays his hand in hers, which seemingly halts the woman's procrastination of responsibility as she now must make a decision. If she is to leave her hand, she is consenting, and if she is to pull her hand back she is resisting and could ruin the atmosphere of the hour. To continue her concious but not conscious procrastination, she decides to leave her hand but she does not notice that she is leaving it. She draws her companion tighter into conversation to create the appearance that she is unaware of the position of her hand. By leaving her hand she is acting in it-self bad faith where she is treating her body as a thing as opposed to free. She has been suspended by transcendence, above the situation as opposed to actually being inside it, yet she is still present in front of her companion. The patterns of bad faith seen are the various ways in which the woman enacted bad faith: disregarding compliments, pretending to be unaware of the companions intentions, and acting as though her hand were a thing, unfree to act. Fortunately, bad faith is not exactly plausible. It seems paradoxical in the way that obeying social norms is bad faith even if a person is aware of the possibilities of their freedom, and still decides instead to pursue the social route. Bad faith involves
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