<history of philosophy, biography> french philosopher (1859-1941). Rejecting sterile mechanistic accounts of the natural world, including those of Darwin and Spencer, Bergson developed an account that emphasized the subjective experience of time as the ground for human freedom in Essai sur les donnÈes immÈdiates de la conscience (Time and Free Will: An Essay on the Immediate Data of Consciousness) (1889), MatiËre et mÈmoire (Matter and Memory) (1896), and The Creative Mind: An Introduction to Metaphysics (1934). In L'volution crÈatrice (Creative Evolution) (1907) Bergson argued that thought, creativity, motion, and evolution are all products of a creative impulse (Fr. Èlan vital) that emerges in opposition to material entropy. Bergson won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1927. Recommended Reading: Leszek Kolakowski, Bergson (St. Augustine, 2000); F. C. T. Moore, Bergson: Thinking Backwards (Cambridge, 1996); and John Mullarkey, Bergson and Philosophy (Notre Dame, 2000).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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