Laureate 2015
Hannah Arendt

Hannah Arendt is one of the twentieth century’s most important political thinkers. The German-Jewish philosopher was born in 1906 and grew up in Königsberg. She studied philosophy under Martin Heidegger and Karl Jaspers. When the Nazi regime came to power, she fled via Paris to the United States, where she lived until her death in 1975.
Arendt spent her entire life researching the deeper layer beneath –and behind– the political topicality of the past and present. Her way of thinking is characterized by its starting point: the accurate perception of concrete situations. In addition, she puts mankind and personal responsibility above all, and she instructs us to approach the world unfalteringly, to understand it better, and to act in it freely together with others.


Arendt’s discourse about the evil in the world, about terrorism and unworldliness as well as the power of democracy has remained relevant until this day. Arendt’s most important works are: The Origins of Totalitarianism (1955), The Human Condition (1958), and Eichmann in Jerusalem (1963).


Within the theme ‘The Outsider’, Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) was chosen as the ‘departed thinker’ of 2015.  She is honored with an educational introduction for secondary and higher education. This introduction, which was written by Thinker Laureate of the Netherlands Marli Huijer and Frank Meester, will be published in 2016.

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