Georges Palante

November 20, 1862 — August 5, 1925

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About Georges Palante

Georges Toussaint Léon Palante (20 November 1862 – 5 August 1925) was a French philosopher and sociologist.

Palante advocated aristocratic individualist ideas similar to Friedrich Nietzsche and Arthur Schopenhauer. He was opposed to Émile Durkheim's holism, promoting methodological individualism instead.

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This person has authored 12 documents, with 82,528 words or 516,069 characters.

The words anarchism and individualism are frequently used as synonyms. Many thinkers vastly different from each other are carelessly qualified sometimes as anarchists, sometimes as individualists. It is thus that we speak indifferently of Stirnerite anarchism or individualism, of Nietzschean anarchism or individualism, of Barrésian anarchism or individualism, etc. In other cases, though, this identification of the two terms is not looked upon as possible. We commonly say Proudhonian anarchism, Marxist anarchism, anarchist syndicalism. But we could not say Proudhonian, Marxist, or syndicalist individualism. We can speak of a Christian or Tolstoyan anarchism, but not of a Christian or Tolstoyan individualism. At other times the ... (From:
Introduction It is perhaps ironic that France, the country of great mass revolutions, of 1789, of 1830, of 1848, of the Commune of 1871, of the Popular Front strikes of 1936 and the uprising of May 1968, gave birth to the most diverse and influential group of anarchist individualist thinkers, writers, and militants. Or perhaps it is precisely because of France’s revolutionary history that individualism took such firm root. If we examine the country’s revolutions and mass movements, what is abundantly clear is that for all its revolutionary fervor, for all the bloodshed and sacrifice, in every case the revolution either served the interests of people other than the workers who made them, or were bloody failures that set th... (From:
“Esprit de corps” is one of the most interesting of phenomena for any observer of contemporary life. In the midst of the disintegration of so many moral and social influences it has maintained a certain hold on people’s consciousness and manifests itself in important ways. We thought it useful to study esprit de corps in some of its principal manifestations. This small psychological inquiry will then lead us to a few considerations on the moral value of esprit de corps. For greater precision it would be appropriate to distinguish two meanings of this expression, “esprit de corps”: a broad and a narrow sense. In a narrow sense esprit de corps is a spirit of solidarity animating all members of a same profe... (From:
Everything in current social evolution indicates an increased reinforcement of society’s powers, an increasingly marked tendency towards the encroachment of the collective on the individual. Everything equally indicates that on the part of most individuals this encroachment will be less and less felt, and will provoke less and less resistance and rebellion. Social conformism and optimism will thus clearly have the last word. Society will emerge victorious over the individual. There will come a moment when social chains will wound almost no one, lacking people sufficiently in love with independence and sufficiently individualized to feel these chains and suffer from them. Lacking combatants, the combat will come to an end. The s... (From:
Historical pessimism is inspired by a retrospective ideal, an historic or even prehistoric ideal whose nostalgia haunts the thinker disgusted with the present. Two names can be put forward in this regard: de Gobineau and Nietzsche. Count de Gobineau judges current civilization in the light of an ethnic type that is distant, almost prehistoric, or at least so little historical that it would be disappointing to write its history: the Aryan type. Nevertheless, Count de Gobineau thinks he can follow it throughout its evolution, its transformations and its deviations. “I compared,” he says, “ races among themselves. I chose one from among them that I saw as the best and I wrote ‘The History of the Persians’ i... (From:
As is the case elsewhere, the tendency to underestimate the individual has made itself felt in the intellectual field. Solitary thought – invention – has been depreciated to the profit of collective thought – imitation – preached under the eternal word of solidarity. The horror of the previously untried, of intellectual and esthetic originality, is a characteristic trait of Latin races. We love regimented thought, conformist and decent meditations. A German writer, Laura Marholm, accurately analyzed this contemporary tendency: “Intellectual cowardice is a universal trait. No one dares makes a decisive statement concerning his milieu. No one any longer allows himself an original thought. Original thought only da... (From:
The pessimism we want to study now is that which we have called misanthropic pessimism. This pessimism doesn’t proceed from an exasperated and suffering sensibility, but from a lucid intelligence exercising its critical clear-sightedness on the evil side of our species. Misanthropic pessimism appears in its grand lines as a theory of universal fraud and universal imbecility; of universal nanality and universal turpitude. As the pitiless painting of a world peopled with cretins and swindlers, of ninnies and fools. The character of this pessimism appears as a universal coldness, a willed impassibility, an absence of sentimentalism that distinguishes it from romantic pessimism, ever inclined to despair or revolt. The mute despair ... (From:
The individualist is, by his very essence, immoralist and atheist. On one hand social religiosity, on the other religious and social atheism: this is how the dilemma is posed. As for me, I have made my choice. I have opted for social atheism. I have expressed this atheism for the past fifteen years in a series of works of which the latest, Les Antinomies entre l’individu et la société (The Antinomies Between the Individual and Society) is a doctoral dissertation that was refused by the Sorbonne. I owe my readers an explanation on this subject. Some among them could ask how it is that the individualist, the social atheist that I am could blithely have submitted his ideas to the verdict of an official jury. Some con... (From:
The century that just passed is without a doubt that in which pessimism found its most numerous, its most varied, its most vigorous and its most systematic interpreters. In addition, individualism was expressed in that century with exceptional intensity by representatives of high quality. It could be interesting to bring together these two forms of thought, dominant in our era; to ask what is the logical or sentimental connection that exists between them, and to what degree pessimism engenders individualism and individualism engenders pessimism. But the question thus posed is too general. There are many kinds of pessimism and many kinds of individualism. Among the latter there is one that in no way implies pessimism, and that ... (From:
The contemptible sentiment par excellence. Mosaic of crystallized fears; mixture of herd stupidity and secular religiosity. I mean the respect of collective beings; of the maleficent and deceptive metaphors that populate our social mythologies. Stirner gives collective entities the characteristic name of “respectful personalities.” Moral idols, political idols, society idols, they float, like the specter of religion in Lucretius’ heavens; ghostly, vain, formidable. Stendhal had already pointed out the respectful mania, the mother of all hypocrisies, guardian of all big shots and oligarchs. The beatific social optimism of the crowd is only a form of that respectful mania. For the crowd, whatever ... (From:
M. G Simmel’s book develops within an intellectual framework wider than that in which historical-critical studies of this kind usually move. For the author it’s not a question of studying Schopenhauer’s and Nietzsche’s work in detail, but of drawing up a balance sheet of modern culture by taking as typical examples of this culture the two great philosophical figures who sum up its essential oppositions. In other words, M. Simmel’s goal is to study Schopenhauer and Nietzsche in function of modern culture. In the first chapter the author formulates the respective positions of the two thinkers confronting this culture. The two philosophies of Schopenhauer and Nietzsche are the perfect expression of our stat... (From:
This is what I call the remnants of the priestly spirit within our modern spirit, which thinks itself a- or anti-religious. But is “remnants” really the proper word? This word implies the idea of a sentiment in retreat, when in fact the priestly spirit is advancing. We would at least think this if we were to consider the expansion of the surface occupied by the priestly spirit. The priestly spirit was once the privilege of a caste; today it has spread, diffused, been diluted in our ruling classes, in those intellectual, political, administrative elites that form our democratic aristocracy. Examples of this spirit are easy to find in our language and mores. We can cite the rage to confer a sacred character on one’s p... (From:

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An icon of a baby.
November 20, 1862
Birth Day.

An icon of a gravestone.
August 5, 1925
Death Day.

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April 21, 2020; 12:43:12 PM (America/Los_Angeles)
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