Who is Pierre Jean Georges Cabanis?June 26, 2021
French philosopher and physiologist Pierre Jean Georges Cabanis was born in France in 1757.
He focused on relationships that explained the entire reality of man, including his physical, mental and moral aspects, in terms of mechanical materialism. Cabanis’ interest in medicine, poetry, and politics eventually led him to philosophy. While he was interested in philosophy, he continued his medical studies. During his stay in Paris, he became acquainted with Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.
For Cabanis, life was an organization of physical forces. The result of “secretions” in the brain, similar to the secretion of bile in the liver, behavior depended on the regulation of natural elements. The soul was unconscious because consciousness was merely an effect of mechanical processes, and sensitivity, the source of intelligence, was a property of the nervous system. At the end of his life, Cabanis saw the ego as spiritual and immortal; but he did not interpret this view as contradicting his previous theories.
Cabanis, who died in 1808, contributed to shaping the notion of nerve in neuroscience with his work.
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Omer YILDIRIM’s Personal Lecture Notes. Atatürk University Sociology Department 1st Year “Introduction to Philosophy” and 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grade “History of Philosophy” Lecture Notes (Ömer YILDIRIM); Open Education Philosophy Textbook