Preface [chapter]

1967 Vasconcelos of Mexico  
At the time of his death in June, 1959, Jose Vasconcelos, whose endeavors in his native Mexico ranged from politics and education to philosophy and letters, was accorded a position of eminence among Latin American philosophers by his fellow Latin Americans. The Mexican philosopher Agustin Basave, for example, speaks of Vasconcelos as "the legitimate glory of the Spanishspeaking world," noting that he is the genius of Spanish America. However, outside this orbit the scholarly world has shown
more » ... le interest in his philosophical teachings. Very few of his writings have been translated into English; moreover, almost no information concerning him, his philosophy, or-for that matter-Latin American philosophy in general, is to be found in our standard philosophical reference works, whether histories, dictionaries, or encyclopedias. Vasconcelos created a complex, subtle, and sophisticated philosophical system (including a theory of knowledge, a metaphysics, an ethics, and an aesthetics) which he termed an "aesthetic monism"; yet he was always vitally interested in the proximate realities and the more or less remote possibilities of Mexico, in the character of the "cosmic race" of his homeland, in the "emotive philosophy" which it could create, and in the relations between the Mexican nation and others of this hemisphere which he called "Bolivarism." There is no "angelism," no "separated intellect," in this philosopher. Jose Vasconcelos was, in the traditional Spanish phrase, un hombre de came y hueso (a man of flesh and bone), a philosopher who sought truth as the fruit of a total experience, sensory, intel-
doi:10.7560/736887-001 fatcat:h7wgrn7jobebferfjhu3aur43a