Ada Neschke-Hentschke

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Ada Neschke-Hentschke (full name Ada Babette Neschke-Hentschke , born September 22, 1942 in Berlin ; † July 9, 2013 in La Laupie ) was a German-Swiss philosophy historian and classical philologist .


Ada Neschke-Hentschke, née Hentschke, studied classical philology , philosophy and political science at the universities of Frankfurt am Main and Heidelberg . After her doctorate as Dr. phil. (1968) with Harald Patzer in Frankfurt, she worked as an assistant at the Institute for Classical Philology there. 1977 habilitation they are of Classics and Philosophy, 1980, she was assigned C3 professor. At the same time she taught in 1978, 1983 and 1985 as a visiting professor at the University of Lille III in France and in 1989/90 at the Cardinal Mercier chair at the University of Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium.

In 1991 Neschke-Hentschke accepted an appointment as full professor for ancient philosophy and the history of philosophy at the University of Lausanne . In 1994 she was a founding member of the College of Swiss Philosophy Professors, of which she was Vice President (1994/95) and President (1995/96). From 1997 to 1999 she was a member of the Swiss Science and Technology Council. From 2000 to 2002 she was Vice Dean of the Faculté des lettres at the University of Lausanne, and from 2003 to 2005 she headed the Center lémanique d'enseignement et de recherche intedisciplinaire: Nature, sciences et société . She was a member of several national and international organizations on the history of politics and philosophy, for example from 2003 to 2007 a board member of the Swiss Association of Legal and Social Philosophy. After her retirement (2006), she continued to teach as an honorary professor at the University of Lausanne. In 2007 she took on Swiss citizenship.

Ada Neschke-Hentschke's research focused on ancient philosophy , especially from the point of view of ethics, law and politics. To this end, she especially studied the writings of Plato and Aristotle and dealt with their reception and interpretation. She published numerous papers on this subject, organized international conferences and edited edited volumes. She was particularly interested in the question of the relationship between law, justice and power, which was first posed by Plato. In this respect she turned against Karl Popper's criticism of Plato . She also dealt intensively with philosophical anthropology as the basis of a practical political philosophy and with the hermeneutics of the humanities .

The Law Faculty of the University of Zurich awarded her an honorary doctorate in 2011 "in recognition of her life's work for the history of philosophy of law" .

Fonts (selection)


  • Politics and philosophy in Plato and Aristotle: The position of the nomoi in the complete Platonic works and the political theory of Aristotle . Frankfurt am Main 1971. 2nd edition 2004 ( Frankfurt scientific contributions 13; = dissertation 1967)
  • with Ulrich Muhlack : Introduction to the history of classical philology . Darmstadt 1972
  • The "Poetics" of Aristotle. Text structure and meaning . Two volumes, Frankfurt am Main 1980 (habilitation thesis)
  • Platonisme politique et théorie du droit naturel. Contributions to an archeology of culture politique européenne . Two volumes, Louvain / Paris 1995–2003
    • Vol. 1 (1995): Platonisme politique et théorie du droit naturel dans l'Antiquité
    • Vol. 2 (2003): Platonisme politique et jusnaturalisme chrétien. D'Augustin d'Hippone à John Locke . Summary in French

Articles, contributions to compilations and encyclopedia entries

  • Political philosophy . In: The New Pauly . Volume 10. JB Metzler, Stuttgart 2001, Sp. 27-33, doi: 10.1163 / 1574-9347_dnp_e1000530
  • Political Theory III: Platonic Tradition in the Latin West . In: The New Pauly . Volume 15/2. JB Metzler, Stuttgart 2002, Sp. 444-461, also doi: 10.1163 / 1574-9347_dnp_e15203280
  • Five theses on a philosophy of the constitution . In: Philippe Mastronardi, Denis Taubert (Hrsg.): State and constitutional theory in the field of tension between the disciplines . Franz Steiner Verlag, Stuttgart 2006, pp. 18-29


  • with Francesco Gregorio and Catherine König-Pralong: Les herméneutiques au seuil du XXI eme siècle: évolution et débat actuel . Louvain-la-Neuve 2004
  • Ed. With Hans Rainer Sepp : Philosophical Anthropology: Origins and Tasks . Verlag Traugott Bautz, Nordhausen 2008, ISBN 978-3-88309-441-0 .
  • Argumenta in dialogos Platonis. Part 1: Interpretation of Plato and its hermeneutics from antiquity to the beginning of the 19th century. Files from the international symposium from April 27-29, 2006 in the Istituto Svizzero di Roma . Basel 2010
  • Edited with Hans Rainer Sepp: Language and Knowledge Acquisition: An interdisciplinary and intercultural approach . Verlag Traugott Bautz, Nordhausen 2011, ISBN 978-3-88309-104-4 .
  • with Michael Erler : Argumenta in dialogos Platonis. Part 2: The interpretation of Plato and its hermeneutics from the 19th to the 21st century. Files from the International Colloquium from February 7th to 9th, 2008 in the Istituto svizzero di Roma . Basel 2013


  • Dominic O'Meara: Ada Neschke-Hentschke † . In: Gnomon . Volume 86 (2014), p. 574 f.

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