Ortega y Gasset, José (1883–1955) By Matthews, Stephanie Walsh
Spanish philosopher, historian, sociologist and politician José Ortega y Gasset contributed significantly to the intellectual landscape of the first half of the twentieth century. Ortega’s works, such as La rebelión de las masas (1930; The Revolt of the Masses), make up the corpus of one of the most influential writers of his time. For him, modernity and democracy were the instigators of his writings that matured into a complex Existentialism, where reason, above all, is a function of life. Born into a Spanish literary family, Ortega was educated by the Jesuits in Madrid before leaving Spain to continue his studies in Germany.