Jürgen Habermas is a German philosopher mostly associated with the influential Frankurt School in Germany, part of the Institute for Social Research, at Goethe University Frankfurt, and historically an important center for research on social theory and critical philosophy. Habermas, now 90, earned his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Bonn in 1954. Habermas is a famed philosopher who has taught a number of influential philosophers, including Hans Joas at the University of Chicago.
Habermas is known for his work on communicative rationality, a position that place emphasis on rationality developing out of interpersonal communication, rather than objective structures in the universe, as with traditional rationalism in philosophy. Significantly, Habermas’s theory attempts to advance the aims of human emancipation in terms of a universalism in morals. Habermas has drawn on diverse philosophical positions and schools, from the older German philosophical thought of legends like Kant to 19th century American schools such as pragmatism. Importantly, Habermas breaks with schools of thought like postmodernism, with his hope that Enlightenment rationality and science can be salvaged and developed within contemporary frameworks.
Habermas has won numerous awards throughout his long and distinguished career, including the Hegel Prize, the Sigmund Freud Prize, and the Theodor W. Adorno Award. He won the Karl Jaspers Prize in 1995, and the Viktor Frankl Award in 2011.
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