Hannah Arendt

1906 (Hannover, Germany) – 1975 (New York)

She studied with Heidegger, and had a complicated affair with him (she called him sly and dishonest, but later testified for him in denazification hearings). In Paris, she attended Kojève’s Hegel seminars, and met Aron and Benjamin (a strong influence). Jaspers supervised her doctoral thesis, and became a close friend for life. In the U.S., 3 years’ frostiness preceded a lifelong friendship with McCarthy. Ricoeur met her at Tillich’s, Hochhuth discussed his play with her, Scholem corresponded. In an odd episode, Spender seemingly put the drunken Auden (a close friend) up to proposing to her; she wept at his death.

Hannah Arendt knew…