Born in San Sebastián, he was an Ethics professor at the University of the Basque Country for over a decade. Presently he is a Philosophy professor at the Complutense University of Madrid. He has won several accolades for his literary work, which covers issues as diverse as contemporary ethics, politics, cinema and literary studies. In 1990, Savater and columnist and publisher, Javier Pradera, founded the magazine, Claves de Razón Práctica.
He has taken an active part in several organizations engaged with peace in the Basque Country and against terrorism and Basque nationalism, such as Movimiento por la Paz y la No Violencia, Gesto por la Paz, Foro Ermua, and currently ¡Basta Ya!.
In November 2012 he was awarded the prestigious Octavio Paz Prize of Poetry and Essay.
He recently founded a new political party called Unión, progreso y democracia (Union, Progress and Democracy) with former socialist MP Rosa Díez in order to oppose different nationalist movements in Spanish mainstream politics. Critics have pointed out that their political outlook seems to be dominated by a strong Spanish nationalist ideology itself.
- Ensayo sobre Cioran (Essay on Cioran) (1974)
- Panfleto contra el Todo (A Proclamation against Everything) (1978)
- Criaturas del aire (1979);
- Caronte aguarda (Charon Awaits) (1981)
- La tarea del héroe (The Task of the Hero) (1981)
- Invitación a la ética (An Invitation to Ethics) (1982)
- La infancia recuperada (Childhood Recovered) (1983)
- Sobre vivir (On Living -and Surviving) (1983)
- Las razones del antimilitarismo y otras razones (The Reasons for Antimilitarism and Other Reasons) (1984)
- El contenido de la felicidad (The Contents of Happiness) (1986)
- Ética como amor propio (Ethics as Self-Esteem) (1988)
- Ética para Amador (Ethics for Amador) (1991)
- Política para Amador (Politics for Amador) (1992)
- Sin contemplaciones (Straight Talk) (1993)
- Despierta y lee (Wake Up and Read) (1998)
- Las preguntas de la vida (The Questions of Life) (1999)
- Perdonen las molestias (Sorry for Disturbing) (2001)
- El Gran Laberinto (The Great Labyrinth) (2005)
- Ética de Urgencia (Importunate Ethics) (2012)