After surveying the evolution of Sartre's philosophical thinking, Ishall address his thought under five categories, namely, ontology,psychology, ethics, political commitment, and the relation betweenphilosophy and the fine arts, especially literature, in his work. Ishall conclude with several observations about the continued relevanceof his thought in contemporary philosophy both Anglo-American and“Continental.”
Mention of the play reminds us of the role of imaginative art inSartre's philosophical work. This piece, whose chief protagonist isFrantz “the butcher of Smolensk,” though ostensibly about the effectof Nazi atrocities at the Eastern front on a postwar industrialistfamily in Hamburg, is really addressing the question of collectiveguilt and the French suppression of the Algerian war for independenceraging at that time. Sartre often turned to literary art to convey oreven to work through philosophical thoughts that he had already orwould later conceptualize in his essays and theoretical studies. Whichbrings us to the relation between imaginative literature andphilosophy in his work.