*Ortega y Gasset, José

José Ortega y Gasset

José Ortega y Gasset



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Ortega y Gasset, José

Spanish, 1883–1955
José Ortega y Gasset is Spain’s greatest philosophical essayist, and arguably one of the finest essayists of the 20th century in any language. Most of his writings (now collected in 12 thick volumes) were originally published in Spain’s leading newspapers and journals, or delivered as lectures in his philosophy classes or in public venues. These writings are remarkable for their thematic diversity, intellectual verve, and stylistic brilliance. Ortega practiced many subtypes of the essay: note, gloss, review, prologue, fragment, thesis, article, meditation, lecture, dialogue, and biographical sketch. A voracious reader with panoramic interests, he wrote about an astounding range of subjects, from art to zoology. Specialized studies of literary, philosophical, or political aspects of Ortega’s thought abound, but the magnitude and diversity of his oeuvre, and the partial truncation of his career by the Spanish Civil War and its aftermath, have delayed a fuller appreciation of his work. If antihumanist trends since the 1960s have partly eclipsed Ortega’s existential humanism, excellent recent studies by Cerezo Galán (1984), Gray (1989), and others have made important strides in demonstrating the continuing relevance of Ortega’s thought.
Coming of age around the turn of the century, Ortega embraced the project of Francisco Giner de los Ríos and Joaquín Costa to regenerate and modernize Spain by emulating the scientific ethos of more advanced European countries. In his various roles of essayist, critic, journalist, editor, lecturer, teacher, and political leader, Ortega carried on his mission of bringing Spanish culture up to the European “height of the time.” He armed himself for this mission by extended periods of study in German universities and by wide reading in the classics, in European literature, philosophy, and history, and in contemporary science. From 1910 to 1936 he held the chair in metaphysics at the University of Madrid. He disseminated, both in his own works and through the Revista de Occidente (1923–36; Western review), the latest ideas of German philosophers Georg Simmel, Edmund Husserl, Max Scheler, and other leading European thinkers of the day.
Ortega not only imported European philosophy into Spain; he also exported his own “Spanish interpretation of the world” to the international reading public.
Ortega shared many of the aesthetic and literary preoccupations of Miguel de Unamuno and José Martínez Ruiz (i.e. Azorín), his immediate predecessors from the Generation of 1898, especially their efforts to reinterpret Spanish culture by way of recovering authentic national values. But Ortega and his generation (that of 1914) distanced themselves from the mythologizing tendencies of the preceding generation, advocating a more rigorous and optimistic approach to national regeneration. To Unamuno’s brooding Romanticism and “tragic sense of life,” Ortega opposed his own “sportive” and “festive” sense of life, adopting such bold personae as hunter, archer, bullfighter, explorer, and navigator in his essays. One key to Ortega’s style and its appeal is that his essays constantly enact his contention that each person’s life is an adventure, with its urgent mission and stakes: to succeed or fail at realizing one’s destiny. By dramatizing the hazards and pleasures he encountered in his own inquiries, Ortega hoped to incite readers to take up and develop the issues under discussion.
His wish to address contemporary Spanish readers where they lived led him to publish his ideas in the form of newspaper articles rather than systematic treatises. As he revealed in “Prólogo para alemanes” (1934; Prologue to Germans), he had never written for humanity at large, but had chosen to address only Spanish-speaking readers, with whom he could carry on an intimate conversation. Cordial without being familiar in tone, his limpid Castilian prose often echoes the rhythms and colloquial flavor of Madrid speech. He was a charismatic lecturer and orator, and his personal warmth and expressiveness are apparent throughout his writings. But Ortega’s relation to the reader was not always one of straightforward dialogue. In “Ni vitalismo ni racionalismo” (1924; Neither vitalism nor rationalism), Ortega wrote that, since he had not been blessed with subtle, philosophically inclined readers, his strategy had been to “seduce the reader to philosophy by lyrical means.” He added that this strategy had been successful enough to allow him to take the next step of “speaking philosophically about philosophy.” In fact, Ortega never stopped using rhetorical means to entice the reader and to dramatize his ideas.
Chief among the distinctive qualities of his prose is a lavish use of metaphor. From his early writings on, he theorized about the nature and uses of metaphor in art, philosophy, and ordinary language. He aptly uses a metaphor to define the trope’s cognitive function: “Metaphor is a supplement to our intellective arm, and represents, in logic, the fishing pole or the rifle.” Other favorite rhetorical figures are paradox, irony, oxymoron, chiasmus, hyperbole, personification, and digression. Ortega’s knowledge of classical and modern literature, the sciences, and visual arts supplied his fertile imagination with a rich lexicon and copious source of analogy and allusion. He is fond of coining ingenious neologisms, and of embellishing a passage with a well-chosen foreign expression. The effect is occasionally precious, but never pedantic. Ortega presumes not an erudite reader, only an intelligent and curious one. His phrasing is felicitous, his exposition lucid—he calls clarity “the courtesy of philosophers.” He has a gift for concise definitions, and for clinching a point with a memorable aphorism.

José Ortega y Gasset1

Ortega’s thought evolves organically, as the continuous elaboration of themes broached early in his career. His mature work can be divided into three periods, according to biographical and thematic developments: 1914–27, 1927–36, and 1936–55.
In the first period, extending from the publication of his first book, Meditaciones del Quifote (1914; Meditations on Quixote) to his encounter with Martin Heidegger’s Sein und Zeit (1927; Being and Time), Ortega explores the role of circumstance and perspective in human life, and works out his philosophy of “vital reason.” In a long prologue to Meditations on Quixote, he sets forth his lifelong essayistic program, inviting his compatriots to join him in “the negation of decrepit Spain” and in “experiments toward a new Spain.” In his view, hatred and rancor had dulled Spaniards’ spirits, leaving them isolated and unable to appreciate their surroundings. He proposes “new ways of looking” which would reconnect individuals to their world, rescuing marginal phenomena from oblivion and restoring an authentic scale of values. Ortega offers his “essays in intellectual love” as “salvations,” or redemptive integrations of self and milieu:
“The reabsorption of circumstance is the concrete destiny of man…I am myself plus my circumstance, and if I do not save it, I cannot save myself.” This is the vital core of Ortega’s philosophy, expressing the “radical reality” to which he returns throughout his writings: life as a ceaseless, intense dialogue between oneself and one’s environment.
Despite its belletristic presentation, the program adumbrated in this early work went beyond literary criticism. Ortega approaches Cervantes’ great novel, Don Quixote—the ostensible subject of his meditation—obliquely, as a pretext, for he has bigger game in view: a new metaphysics of human life. As Philip Silver (1978) has shown, Ortega’s “new ways of looking” amounted to a “mundane phenomenology” aimed at giving each individual’s concrete sensory experience of the world its due, and thereby avoiding what he considered the intellectualist error of transcendental phenomenology, as expounded by his German contemporary, Edmund Husserl.
In the same prologue, Ortega gives a much-quoted if equivocal definition of the essay.
Although his essays are motivated by philosophical desires, “they are not philosophy, which is science. The essay is science, minus the explicit proof.” It is not that the essayist lacks such proof: “it is a matter of intellectual honor not to write anything susceptible of proof without possessing the latter beforehand.” But the essayist elects for stylistic reasons to withhold “the rigid mechanical apparatus of proof,” which he commands no less than the philosopher or scientist, so as not to interrupt the flow or conceal from the reader “the inner warmth with which the thoughts were conceived.” By reducing the distinction between essay and science to rhetorical strategy, Ortega seems to minimize or gloss over possible differences of method, scope, and subject matter. This is an instance of what Thomas Mermall (1994) calls a fundamental tension between the rhetorical nature of Ortega’s writings and their epistemic claims: he somehow intended his essays to be at once circumstantial and systematic.
In El tema de nuestro tiempo (1923; The Modern Theme), Ortega attends to the biological basis of culture and proposes a synthesis of vitalism and rationalism. Human life, having both spiritual and biological aspects, is governed by countervailing imperatives: “Man, a living being, must be good—commands the cultural imperative.
The good must be human, lived: that is, compatible with human life—orders the other imperative, the vital one.” Modernity, according to Ortega, has made two opposite and unsuccessful attempts to resolve the antinomy of life and culture—first rationalism (which he calls “the irony of Socrates”) and then, in response, relativism (“the irony of Don Juan”). The first denies life to save culture; the second reacts by denying the objective value of culture, thus making way for life. Ortega considers these to be two “complementary forms of blindness,” and argues that the task of his time is to seek a third way. “Pure reason” must yield to “vital reason.”
In his “La doctrina del punto de vista” (“Doctrine of the Point of View”), the final essay of The Modern Theme, Ortega argues that perspectivism can break the impasse of rationalism and relativism in the sphere of knowledge, or “the acquisition of truths.” The question is, how can truths, by definition “eternal, unique and invariable,” be apprehended by ephemeral human subjects? According to rationalism, the knowing subject must be an unchanging, transparent medium which can receive reality without deforming it. Relativism, recognizing that human beings do not meet those criteria, holds trans-individual knowledge to be a vain project. For Ortega, the subject is not a “pure I,” the transparent medium posited by rationalists, but neither does the subject’s perception of reality deform it, as relativists claim. Rather, the subject is likened to a sieve or net which, placed in a current, retains some things and lets others pass. Thus, the knowing subject selects but does not distort reality. When two individuals look at the same landscape from different vantage points, they see different scenes: each sees something which eludes the other’s point of view. To infer from this that one or both views must be false or illusory would be to posit a third, ideal landscape, independent of any definite point of view—the persistent “utopian” error of rationalist philosophy. There is no such “archetypal landscape,” declares Ortega. Reality, like a landscape, lends itself to an infinite number of perspectives, each one true and authentic as far as it goes.
Ortega was well aware that perspectivism, while sanctioning the individual point of view, does not answer the question of how there can be “eternal and invariable” truths.
He apparently felt it necessary to reinvent an absolute point of view which would synthesize all partial viewpoints. “By juxtaposing everyone’s partial views, it would be possible to weave them together and attain the universal and absolute truth.” He ends the essay on a distinctly “utopian” note: the sum of all individual viewpoints would be “God…the symbol of the vital torrent through whose infinite nets the universe gradually passes…mankind is the visual organ of divinity.” It may be argued that Ortega solved the problem of relativism more satisfactorily in his many evocative essays devoted to the Spanish landscape, in which he showed how provincial perspectives may be overcome through travel, comparison, and dialogue. He also explored the implications of perspective in aesthetics and the arts in a number of seminal essays, including his wellknown “La deshumanización del arte” (1925; “The Dehumanization of Art”).
Ortega reached the height of his powers during the intense second period (1917–36), which saw the fruition of such important works as La rebelión de las masas (1930; The Revolt of the Masses), Misión de la universidad (1930; Mission of the University), Goethe desde dentro (1932.; Goethe from within), and “Historia como sistema” (wr. 1935, pub. 1936 as “History as a System”), as well as dozens of influential political articles and speeches. He also gave three important series of lectures not published until after his death: ¿Qué es filosofia? (given 1929, pub. 1958; What Is Philosophy?), Unas lecdones de metafísica (given 1932–33, pub. 1966; Some Lessons in Metaphysics), and En torno a Galileo (given 1933, pub. 1956; On Galileo, translated as Man and Crisis).
In The Revolt of the Masses, his most famous and influential work, Ortega extends the sociological diagnosis of modernity that he had begun in previous works of the 1920s.
The initial symptom of the problem—“the fact of agglomeration”—is registered as the realization that public places are now filled by teeming masses. The instruments of civilization, and the refined pleasures once reserved for the few, are suddenly to be found in the possession of the “multitude.” The crowd, which had previously stayed in the background of the social stage, has advanced to the footlights and assumed the starring role: “There are no longer protagonists; there is only the chorus.” Contrary to a common misunderstanding, Ortega’s “elitism” is not a defense of inherited privilege; his opposition between “select minorities” and masses does not correspond to the distinction between “upper” and “lower” classes. By select minorities, Ortega means those who wish to excel and therefore make high demands on themselves, living in the service of ideals.
Mass man, by contrast, demands nothing of himself and is quite content to be like everyone else. The distinction is between “noble life and common life, or effort and inertia.” In Ortega’s view, human society is always “aristocratic” in this sense—a dynamic unity of relatively inert masses led by creative minorities—or it ceases to be a society. Unlike its 19th-century counterpart, which respected law and followed the lead of qualified minorities, the modern mass is a “hyperdemocracy” which rejects any appeal to higher standards and ideals, and imposes its will through direct action or violence. The mediocre, commonplace mind “has the effrontery to proclaim the right to vulgarity and to impose it everywhere.” Minorities have abdicated their role, leaving the masses to rule civil society but without the vision or capacity to rule. Lacking a vital program or compelling moral code, European societies are demoralized and adrift.
Ortega is not simply retelling Spengler’s pessimistic version of Western decline. He takes the new prominence of the masses first as a sign that the general quality of human life has risen dramatically. The average man represents history’s field of action; “he is to history what the sea-level is to geography.” The advent of the masses represents a dramatic surge of human potentiality, an ambiguous success story, resulting from the previous century’s “noble experiment” at combining liberal democracy with what Ortega dubs “technicism”—itself the offspring of the marriage of industrial capitalism and science. Unfortunately, the masses, like spoiled children, have inherited the fruits of these experiments but not the heroic effort and inventive spirit required to produce and sustain them. The result is paradoxical: “the modern world is a civilized one; its inhabitant is not.” Mass man is “a primitive who has slipped through the wings onto the age-old stage of civilization.” His prototype, ironically, is the average man of science, widely regarded as the finest flower of European civilization. The increasing specialization mandated by scientific research has produced a new and paradoxical species, the “learned ignoramus”—a human type with myopic, fragmentary vision; a new “barbarian” whose complacency and narrowness are a betrayal of the scientific ideal of integrated knowledge.
But the greatest danger facing European civilization, Ortega writes prophetically, is that of state intervention. The contemporary state is, like science, one of the glories of European culture, whose very success has created the conditions for a possible reversion to barbarism. Failing to see the state as the delicate human artefact it is, created and sustained by political values and civic virtues whose preservation requires vigilance and effort, the masses instead view it as an anonymous instrument for the realization of their every whim. The grave danger in this tendency is “the absorption of all spontaneous social effort,” the crushing of creative minorities, and the “bureaucratization of existence” by the State. Means and ends are reversed: “the people are converted into fuel to feed the mere machinery which is the State. The skeleton devours the flesh around it.
The scaffolding becomes the owner and tenant of the house.” Ortega’s prophecy has been amply fulfilled in this century, by totalitarian regimes of left and right. His study concludes on another prophetic note, envisioning a new vital project—the unification of Europe—which might avoid the dangers, and reap the potential, symbolized by the revolt of the masses.
This transitional period saw both the zenith and the nadir of Ortega’s involvement in Spanish politics. For a generation he had been at the forefront of liberal intellectual reformers, leading the call in 1930 for the replacement of Spain’s tottering parliamentary monarchy by a democratic Republic. After serving for a year as an elected representative to parliament at the beginning of the Second Republic (1931–32.), Ortega grew disillusioned with the polarized political situation, withdrew, and kept a pointed silence about Spanish politics from then on.
In Ortega’s evolving thought of this period, “historical reason” subsumed “vital reason” as he meditated on the historical dimension of human life. After reading Heidegger’s great work, Being and Time, Ortega reaffirmed (but never really fulfilled) his earlier commitment to presenting his work as a philosophical system. He occasionally reminded his readers that his own early works had anticipated many of Heidegger’s central ideas. Nelson Orringer (1979) has shown that in fact many of Ortega’s main aesthetic and philosophical concerns were heavily indebted to his early readings in German thought. Ortega’s influences, however, were always imaginatively transformed by his unique vision and idiom. For example, one of his root metaphors—life as shipwreck—is an ancient Greek one. Ortega does not invoke the pathos of shipwreck to suggest the absurdity or hopelessness of man’s fate. In “Pidiendo un Goethe desde dentro” (1932.; “In Search of Goethe from Within”) Ortega uses the metaphor to stress the human need for action and invention, for an urgent, vital project, in order to survive.
“To be shipwrecked is not to drown.” He equates culture to the swimming motions which the drowning individual makes to save himself. “The consciousness of shipwreck, being the truth of life, is already salvation. This is why I no longer believe in any thoughts but those of the shipwrecked.”
During the third and final period, from the outbreak of the Civil War (and his decadelong self-exile) until his death, Ortega continued to publish and lecture, and to work on his announced major treatises on history, society, and philosophy—leaving them unfinished, to be published posthumously as El bombre y la gente (1957; Man and People), La idea de principio en Leibniz y la evolución de la teoría deductiva (1958; The Idea of Prindple in Leibnitz and the Evolution of Deductive Theory), and Sobre la razón
histórica (1979; Historical Reason). In these rewarding works—which are for the most part distillations or elaborations of earlier themes rather than new departures—Ortega probes the growing sense of crisis in European thought, especially the erosion of faith in reason. One cause of the crisis is the failure of modern philosophy and science to give an adequate account of human nature. In Historical Reason, delivered originally as lectures in Buenos Aires (1940) and Lisbon (1944), Ortega explains this failure and announces a new mode of thought to remedy it. “Man has no nature; what he has is history; because history is the mode of being of the entity that is constitutionally, fundamentally, mobility and change.” Man, an “unknown” whose existence cannot be fixed or quantified, only interpreted, “will not be discovered in the laboratories. The hour of the historical sciences is at hand. Pure reason…must be replaced by narrative reason… This narrative reason is historical reason.” When Ortega left Spain in voluntary exile in 1936, he lost the immediate contact with the Spanish public on which the dynamism of his style and thought had depended. While leaving him freer to work on his long-promised systematic works, his relative isolation could only adversely affect the character and pace of his production.
Some critics have reproached Ortega for being “only” a great stylist, a creator of metaphors, instead of becoming the systematic philosopher he aspired to be. His principal virtues are admittedly synoptic and heuristic, not systematic; they are those of the discoverer and trailblazer, not those of the colonizer or city-builder. But the tension between his literary vocation and his philosophical aspirations needs no apology, for it is the source of his unique mode of essaying. His philosophy of “authentic life”—life as an ever-renewed process of selfinvention, of discovering one’s necessary task in the crucible of circumstances—is precisely what he practiced in his incandescent essays.


Born 9 May 1883 in Madrid. Studied at a Jesuit school in Miraflores, Málaga, 1891–97;
University of Deusto, Bilbao, 1897–98; University of Madrid, 1898–1904, degree, 1902, Ph.D. in philosophy, 1904; Universities of Berlin, Leipzig, and Marburg, 1905–07.
Professor of psychology, logic, and ethics, Escuela Superior del Magisterio, Madrid, 1908–10. Founder, Faro, Madrid, 1908. Married Rosa Spottorno Topete, 1910: three children. Professor of metaphysics, Central University of Madrid, 1910–29 (resigned in protest against the military dictator Miguel Primo de Rivera) and 1930–36. Elected to the Royal Spanish Academy of Moral and Political Sciences, 1914. Cofounder, League of Political Education, 1914. Founder, España review, 1915–23, and Revista de Occidente, 1923–36, and cofounder, El Sol (The sun), 1917. Founder, with Ramón Pérez de Ayala and Gregorio Marañón, Agrupación al Servicio de la República (Group at the Service of the Republic), 1931; deputy for the province of Leon, Constitutional Assembly, Second Spanish Republic, and Civil Governor of Madrid, 1931–32. Self-imposed exile in France, the Netherlands, Argentina, and Portugal, 1936–41; professor of philosophy, University of San Marcos, Lima, from 1941; returned to Spain, 1945. Founder, with Julián Marías, Institute of the Humanities, Madrid, 1948–50. Lectured frequently in Germany, Switzerland, and the United States, 1950–55.
Awards: Gold Medal of City of Madrid;
honorary degrees from two universities. Died in Madrid, 18 October 1955.

Selected Writings
Essays and Related Prose
Meditaciones del Quijote, 1914; as Meditations on Quixote, translated by Evelyn Rugg and Diego Marín, 1961
Personas, obras, cosas, 1916; as Mocedades, 1973
El Espectador: Colección de ensayos filosóficos y literarios, 8 vols., 1916–34; in 1 vol., 1943
El tema de nuestro tiempo, 1923; as The Modern Theme, translated by James Cleugh, 1933
La deshumanizacíon del arte: Ideas sobre la novela, 1925; as The Dehumanization of Art and Notes on the Novel, translated by Helene Weyl, 1948; in Velázquez, Goya and The Dehumanization of Art, edited by Christine Bernard, translated by Alexis Brown and others, 1972
Tríptico (on Mirabeau, Kant, and Goethe), 3 vols., 1927–33
Misión de la universidad, 1930; as Mission of the University, translated by Howard Lee Nostrand, 1944
La rebelión de las masas, 1930; The Revolt of the Masses, translated by J.R.Carey, 1932, and Anthony Kerrigan, 1986
La redención de las provincias y de la decencia nacional (articles), 1931
Goethe desde dentro, 1932
Ensimismamiento y alteración; Meditación de la tecnica, 1939; first essay as “The Self and the Other,” translated by Willard R. Trask, in Partisan Review, 1952; second essay as “Man the Technician,” translated by W.Atkinson, in History as a System and Other
Essays Toward a Philosophy of History, 1961
El libro de las misiones (includes Misíon del bibliotecario; Misíon de la universidad;
Miseria y esplendor de la traducción), 1940; first essay as The Mission of the Librarian, translated by James Lewis and Ray Carpenter, 1961
Teoría de Andalucía y otros ensayos, 1942
History as a Systent and Other Essays, translated by Helene Weyl, 1946
En torno a Galileo, 1956; as Man and Crisis, translated by Mildred Adams, 1958
Meditación de la técnica, 1957
Ensayos escogidos, 1957
El hombre y la gente, 1957; as Man and People, translated by Willard R.Trask, 1957
Kant, Hegel, Dilthey, 1958
Meditación del pueblo joven, 1958
¿Qué es filosofía?, 1958; as What Is Philosophy?, translated by Mildred Adams, 1960
La idea de principio en Leibniz y la evolución de la teoría deductiva, 1958; as The Idea of Principle in Leibnitz and the Evolution of Deductive Theory, translated by Mildred Adams, 1971
History as a System and Other Essays Toward a Philosophy of History, translated by W.Atkinson, 1961
Misión del bibliotecario y otros ensayos afines, 1962
Unas lecciones de metafísica, 1966; as Some Lessons in Metaphysics, translated by Mildred Adams, 1970
The Dehumanization of Art, and Other Essays on Art, Culture and Literature, 1968
Velázquez, Goya and The Dehumanization of Art, edited by Christine Bernard, translated by Alexis Brown and others, 1972
Escritos políticos, 3 vols., 1973
Pasado y porvenir para el hombre actual (selected speeches), 1974
Sobre la razón histórica, 1979; as Historical Reason, translated by Philip W.Silver, 1984
Ensayos sobre la “Generación del 98″ y otros escritores españoles contempordneos, 1981
Meditación de la técnica, y otros ensayos sobre ciencia y filosofía, 1982
Misión de la universidad y otros ensayos sobre educacóZn y pedagogía, 1982
Meditaciones sobre la literatura y el arte, edited by E.Inman Fox, 1987

Other writings: philosophical works.
Collected works editions: Obras completas, 11 vols., 1946–69, and 12 vols., 1983.

Donoso, Anton, and Harold C.Raley, José Ortega y Gasset: A Bibliography of Secondary Sources, Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green State University, 1986
Rukser, Udo, Bibliografía de Ortega: Estudios Orteguianos 3, Madrid: Revista de Occidente, 1971

Further Reading
Cerezo Galán, Pedro, La voluntad de aventura: Aproximamiento crítico al pensamiento de Ortega y Gasset, Barcelona: Ariel, 1984
Copleston, Frederick, “Ortega y Gasset and Philosophical Relativism,” in his
Philosophers and Philosophies, New York: Barnes and Noble, 1976
Dust, Patrick H., editor, Ortega y Gasset and the Question of Modernity, Minneapolis: Prisma Institute, 1989
Gaos, José, Sobre Ortega y Gasset y otros trabajos de historia de las ideas en España y la America española, Mexico City: Imprenta Universitaria, 1957
Graham, John T., A Pragmatist Philosophy of Life in Ortega y Gasset, Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1994
Gray, Rockwell, The Imperative of Modernity: An Intellectual Biography of José Ortega y Gasset, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1989
Gray, Rockwell, “Ortega y el ensayo (I–II),” article published in two parts, El País, 8–9 June 1992
McClintock, Robert, Man and His Circumstances: Ortega as Educator, New York: Teachers College Press, 1971
Marías, Julián, Ortega y Gasset: Circumstance and Vocation, Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1970
Marichal, Juan, “La singularidad estilística de Ortega,” in his Teoría e historia del ensayismo hispánico, Madrid: Alianza, 1984
Mermall, Thomas, “Entre epísteme y doxa: El trasfondo retorico de la razón vital,” Revista Hispánica Moderna 47 (1994)
Morón Arroyo, Ciriaco, El sistema de Ortega y Gasset, Madrid: Alcalá, 1968
Nicol, Eduardo, El problema de la filosofía hispánica, Madrid: Tecnos, 1961
Orringer, Nelson, Ortega y sus fuentes germánicas, Madrid: Gredos, 1979
Ouimette, Victor, José Ortega y Gasset, Boston: Twayne, 1982,
Regalado García, Antonio, El laberinto de la razón: Ortega y Heidegger, Madrid: Alianza, 1990
Rodríguez Huéscar, Antonio, José Ortega y Gasset’s Metaphysical Innovation: A Critique and Overcoming of Idealism, Albany: State University of New York Press, 1995
Rossi, Alejandro, and others, José Ortega y Gasset, Mexico City: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1984
Senabre Sempere, Ricardo, Lengua y estilo de Ortega y Gasset, Salamanca: Universidad de Salamanca, 1964
Silver, Philip W., Ortega as Phenomenologist: The Genesis of “Meditations on Quixote”, New York: Columbia University Press, 1978

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