Over the last two centuries, the most influential Mexican philosophers that you will discover in this article have put such interesting issues as the particularity of the Mexican soul, the relationship between man and science, and the role of ethics at the center of the debate. on women’s equality and the gender issue.
What are the most important Mexican philosophers and what have been their contributions to the reality of the country and the continent
? You will discover it below. INDEX
1. Characteristics of Mexican philosophy
2. The 10 most important Mexican philosophers The characteristics of philosophy in Mexico
Mexico is without a doubt the great philosophical bastion of Latin America, since the traditions and schools of thought of that country have always been at the forefront for the importation of the main currents of European philosophy and the creation of a genuine Latin American philosophy. Its history unfolds in four very marked stages. 1. Pre-Columbian Philosophy: Did I Succeed
Even today it is the subject of debate whether Mayan and Nahua thought should be considered philosophy or not. These traditions remained isolated and never had contact with classical Greek culture, the cradle of philosophy, and this leads to denying the philosophical nature of indigenous ideas .
However, some authors such as Miguel Leon-Portilla or Enrique Domingo Dusselthey believe that those ideas have many similarities with the thought systems of philosophy, and have produced some anthologies to summarize their richness. 2. Theological contributions in colonial Mexico
During the colonial period, the currents of thought that developed in Mexico came from Spain .
Thus, a first stage is influenced by scholasticism and Aristotelianism on moral issues that were taught at the Pontifical University founded in 1553. Later came the debates of the famous controversies of Valladolid around freedom , and in a final stage predominates the Jesuit thought and the bases for a modern philosophy. 3. The Mexican philosophy of the nineteenth century
The birth of a more autonomous philosophy, which many consider to be the origin of authentic Mexican philosophy, was born with the 19th century and the importation of the European positivist current led by Gabino Barreda.
Although throughout this stage foreign influences are still maintained, unlike the colonial period, a greater effort is observed on the part of philosophers to apply theoretical currents to Mexican reality .
At the end of the century and with the arrival of the Mexican revolution at the beginning of the 20th century, a strong dispute between positivism and humanism opens. 4. The professionalization of philosophy in the 20th century
The Mexican philosophy of the 20th century and to this day is deeply impacted by the experience of the revolution and the extension of leftist thought that was consolidated with the arrival of the Spanish exiles and the creation, in 1948, of the Hiperion Group.
During this new stage of Mexican philosophy, authors such as Luis Villalon, Leopoldo Zea and Samuel Ramos have consolidated some themes such as concern for being, metaphysics, cultural difference and national identity . 10 Mexican philosophers and their contributions
The list of the following Mexican philosophers is a reflection of the wealth of contributions to the country’s cultural tradition and their contribution to the construction of a genuine continental philosophy in constant dialogue with European influences. 1. Carlos de Siguenza y Gongora
Of all the thinkers of colonial Mexico, probably the richest and most influential was Carlos de Siguenza y Gongora, a mathematician, astronomer and philosopher born in 1645 and belonging to the Compania de Jesus. In addition, he was the director of the first archaeological excavations in Mexico, carried out at Teotihuacan in 1675.
Although he was trained in Jesuit thought, he soon revealed himself as a genuine intellectual who did not hesitate to use thecontributions of Galileo Galilei, Rene Descartes or Nicolas Copernicus to counteract the superstition surrounding astronomy and separate it from astrology, which was an affront to Aristotelianism and Thomism.
In addition, Carlos de Siguenza is the famous author of Misfortunes of Alonso Ramirez, a chronicle about the passionate journey around the world of a fascinating and elusive character. Until recently it was believed to be an invented story, but an investigation has shown that the facts were real. Siguenza also recounted the hunger riot of 1691. 2. Gabino Barreda
At the time when positivism was fashionable in Europe, Gabino Barreda trained as a scientist in Paris and there he met August Comte, father of the positivist philosophical current. Since then, this philosopher born in Puebla in 1818 was convinced that science could solve Mexico’s problems.
This is the starting point for the construction of a whole line of thought that makes Gabino Barreda the most influential Mexican philosopher of the 19th century .
From his chair, he tried to spread positivist ideas throughout the country, and founded the Sociedad Metodofila, which would be the embryo of the Partido Cientifico. But without a doubt, his great contribution to Mexican culture was the national educational reform promoted by the Republican government of Benito Juarez.
Subsequently, Mexican philosophy has criticized and displaced the points of view of Gabino Barreda to give space to a more humanistic and less scientific thought. 3. Jose Vasconcelos
Born in Oaxaca in 1882, the career of Jose Vasconcelos is marked by his intellectual side and his political commitment. He was the founder of the Ministry of Education in Mexico, and his work at the head of it earned him the nickname of “teacher of the youth of America” .
He actively participated in the Mexican revolution alongside the Maderistas, but his rise came from the government of Alvaro Obregon, in 1920, when he led the Secretary of Public Education and promoted a fruitful stage of opening schools and libraries., dissemination of culture to the people and extension of education to all social strata.
As a thinker, Jose Vasconcelos produced an extensive literary work that in the field of philosophy revolved around the influence of Arthur Schopenhauer and the fight against positivism and utilitarianism in defense of aesthetics and beauty as supreme principles. 4. Samuel Ramos
Framed in the vitalism of Jose Ortega y Gasset and the individual psychology of Alfred Adler, the Mexican philosopher Samuel Ramos, born in 1897 in Zitacuaro, became the great thinker of the “Mexican soul” and the return to values indigenous.
It was precisely Alfred Adler’s studies on inferiority complexesas a psychological reflection of a previous traumatic experience which motivated the theoretical development of Samuel Ramos about the inferiority complex within the Mexican identity.
What in the individual experience Adler describes as childhood traumas, Ramos elevates it to the category of national trauma coinciding with the Spanish conquest , which molds a “Mexican soul” marked by the rejection of one’s own identity and the constant search for a personality in permanent construction. 5. Alfonso Mendez Plancarte
Alfonso Mendez Plancarte, a Mexican philosopher born in 1909 in Zamora, Michoacan, is an intellectual link between the theology of the colonial period and Mexican philosophy of the 20th century. In 1932 he was ordained a priest and begana career as a humanist intellectual that focused on the recovery of the thought of Sor Juana de la Cruz and Amado Nervo.
Of the philosophers included in this list, Mendez Plancarte may be the least original, since he did not contribute new ideas to the thought of his time , but his work in collecting material and analyzing previous authors is essential for the philosophers who came after had easy access to the Mexican intellectual heritage. 6. Leopoldo Zea Aguilar
When the Spanish philosopher Jose Gaos emigrated to Mexico because of his opposition to the Franco regime, in 1938, he found in Leopoldo Zea Aguilarone of his most outstanding disciples. Since then, this thinker born in Mexico City in 1912 has become one of the most important philosophers in Latin America.
Being born in a humble family, he had to work during the day and study at night, but Jose Gaos encouraged him to obtain the scholarship and dedicate himself exclusively to philosophy. He then revolutionized the Mexican philosophical landscape with his thesis El positivismo en Mexico, where he applied positivism to the context of his country .
Very influenced by the figure of Simon Bolivar, and with some anti-imperialist ideas, Leopoldo Zea Aguilar consolidated the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčintegral Latin Americanism in history and tried to lay the foundations of a Latin American philosophy as the foundation of continental thought.. 7. Emilio Uranga Emilio Uranga
‘s thought was profoundly influenced by the intellectual circle of Grupo Hiperion , led by the exiled Spaniard Jose Gaos and in which, among others, Leopoldo Zea and Luis Villoro participated.
His dimension as a great thinker and one of the most powerful Mexican philosophers of the moment made him represent the National Autonomous University of Mexico on many occasions in international congresses, in which he met the most important figures of the European existentialist current , such as Martin Heidegger. , Jean-Paul Sartre or Albert Camus.
In a first stage, the work of Emilio Uranga is marked by the thought of Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre and Lukacs, while in a second phase it is oriented towards analytical philosophy and the ideas of Bertrand Russell and Ludwig Wittgenstein.
In general, the work of Emilio Uranga should be taken as one of the most remarkable attempts of the postwar generation of Mexican philosophers to decipher the problem of being Mexican in a time of transformation of the social environment. 8. Luis Villoro
Luis Villoro was born in 1922 in Barcelona (Spain), but received his doctorate in Mexico and began teaching in 1948 at the National Autonomous University. Disciple of Jose Gaos, defender of leftist ideaswho at that time were triumphing in the intellectual circles of the country, Luis Villoro became one of the most influential philosophers in Mexico.
His work is a rich contribution of ideas about metaphysics and the limits of reason, the relationship of the human being with knowledge and power, ethical reflection on justice and the concept of alterity, and the defense of differences. and critical thinking .
In a first stage he developed his ideas within the framework of historical or particular philosophy, to later evolve towards universal or theoretical philosophy. His last stage was one of synthesis, giving rise to a practical philosophy that had a great influence on reflections on democracy and the indigenous movement.after the revolutionary experience of the EZLN in 1994. 9. Graciela Hierro
Born in Mexico City in 1928, Graciela Hierro is one of the most influential theorists of Mexican philosophy and a pioneer in feminist thought. She is the founder, in 1978, of the Feminist Philosophical Association of Mexico.
Due to her training and her initial theoretical development, Graciela Hierro’s philosophy slides at all times through the concept of ethics , and although she was born in the bosom of a traditional Catholic family, in full swing of feminist theories in the the seventies was one of the first to systematize issues related to the body and sexuality of women.
According to Graciela Hierro, women are objects for others, subject to control, use and inferiorization. To combat this reality, she proposes an ethics of women and for the first time puts the question of gender at the center of the philosophical debate.
After making a place for herself in a discipline monopolized by men, and with dozens of books and publications behind her, Graciela Hierro died of cancer in 2003, leaving behind an irreparable void and an incalculable intellectual and moral heritage . 10. Mario Magallon
In full swing of the philosophical generation of the Hiperion Group, the Mexican philosopher Mario Magallon was born, who has been a Doctor from UNAM since 2001 with the thesis Challenges of democracy in Latin America at the end of the 20th century.
His introduction into the intellectual world is, however, earlier. Since the eighties he began to participate in scholarly centers such as the National System of Researchers, from which he developed an important contribution to Mexican philosophy, taking as his main concern the place of Latin American reality in the continuum of Western thought.
From this perspective, Mario Magallon was a pioneer in denying the universality of Western thought and directing research to the particular study of the history of the peoples of Latin America to point out their evolutionary specificity.
This particular evolution has been, according to Magallon, a dialectical process resulting from the fusion of cultures that results ina unity in cultural diversity , where indigenous communities have to live according to their traditions in a space of freedom, justice and equality among us. Bibliography
Ramirez, MT (2007). Stages of otherness in the philosophical reflection of Luis Villoro. Diana, 52(58), 143-175.
Lopez, J.O. (2003). Jose Vasconcelos and Mexican education. Magazine History of Latin American Education, (7).
Ma. del Carmen Rovira, M., & Almaguer, A. (Eds.). (1998). Mexican philosophical thought of the nineteenth century and early years of the twentieth (Vol. 1). Unam.