Hannah Arendt on the Concept of “Evil”



Hannah Arendt carried out deep thinking on the evil’s problem under the rule of totalitarian terror, it reflected in the two dimensions: “Radical evil” and “Banality of evil”. The former core content is that totalitarianism completely changes human nature, people will become superfluous; the latter is that the evildoers are incogitant、shallow and inane. “Banality of Evil” is the product of dialectical negation to “Radical Evil”, marks the completion and maturity of the system about Arendt on the concept of “evil”. Arendt on the concept of “evil” deeply criticized the totalitarian reign of terror changed human nature completely from the social and individual perspectives.


Radical evil; Banality of evil; Connotation

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Arendt, H. (2009). The origins of totalitarianism. SDX Joint Publishing Company.

Arendt, H. (2009). Human condition. Shanghai People’s Publishing House.

Arendt, H. (2003). Eichmann in Jerusalem. Jilin People’s Publishing House.

Arendt, H. (2007). On revolution. Yilin Press.

Arendt, H. ( 2006). The life of mind. Jiangsu Education Publishing House.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/7389


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