De eigen wetenschap getrouw - Helmuth Plessner in Nederlandse ballingschap | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 126, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0040-7518
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1163


After Hitler came to power thousands of people left Germany and many of them moved to the Netherlands. Among them was Helmuth Plessner, who – in Nazi terms – was a Half-Jew and was therefore deprived of his professorship at the University of Cologne. The University of Groningen offered him refuge. Plessner was one of the most important German philosophers of the twentieth century and a founder of philosophical anthropology. This article surveys his life and works, and explores the impact of this period of exile on his philosophy and his thinking about Germany. Plessner’s experience as a philosopher exiled in the Netherlands is also used to challenge some assumptions about integration and intellectual assimilation that pervade exile studies. Hitherto this branch of study has drawn conclusions from studies on German and Austrian scholars emigrating to Anglo-Saxon countries, especially the United States. However, this article examines the life of a scholar who lived in exile in the Netherlands and assesses whether the experience was different for scholars who did not leave the European continent.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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