Against instrumental reason: spirituality, neo-Marxism, and Heideggerian thought in three major Spanish thinkers.
Rodriguez, Beatriz Caballero
The central argument of this thesis is that, contrary to what is generally believed, Critical Theory (CT) – as understood by the Frankfurt School (FS) – does exist and is developed in Spain influenced by and parallel to the Frankfurt School’s own research during the second half of the twentieth century. Hence, the aim of this research is to provide evidence of the existence in Spain of thought developed in line with Frankfurtian CT. To this end, we shall explore the thought developed by three leading Spanish thinkers: José Luis López Aranguren, María Zambrano Alarcón, and Jesús Aguirre y Ortiz de Zárate. This will be done from the perspective of two pivotal currents of thought arising from Germany: neo- Marxism and Heideggerian thought. By doing so, not only will this research draw attention to the much overlooked issue of CT in Spain, but it will also help to re-contextualize Spanish thought of the second half of the twentieth century in the broader sociological and philosophical discussions which were taking place in post-war Europe and the United States. To this end, the thesis has been structured in two parts. The aim of the first part is to provide an introduction as well as a methodological and historical contextualization which will establish the framework for the rest of the thesis. In the second part, I will carry out an interdisciplinary comparative study analysing which aspects of the thought of these Spanish thinkers converge with the thought of the FS, and which differ from them. Attention will also be paid to the socio-political atmosphere they are immersed in, so as to find out how it contributes to shape their thought.