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1. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 53 > Issue: 1
Joshua M. Hall Schiller’s Dancing Vanguard: From Grace and Dignity to Utopian Freedom
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Against caricatures of the poet-philosopher Friedrich Schiller as an unoriginal popularizer of Kant, or a forerunner of totalitarianism, Frederick Beiser reinterprets him as an innovative, classical republican, broadening his analysis to include Schiller’s poetry, plays, and essays not widely available in English translation, such as the remarkable essay, “On Grace and Dignity.” In that spirit, the present article argues that the latter text, misperceived by Anglophone critics as self-contradictory, is better understood as centering on gender and dance. In brief, grace is a virtuous power of beautiful gestures associated with women, while dignity is a power of sublime gestures associated with men, and the improvised combination thereof is a divinely androgynous power of gesture that I term “stateliness,” in a three-step choreography of aesthetic education.
2. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 53 > Issue: 1
Peter Luba Rancière’s American Heritage: Transitory Concepts and Gestural Pragmatism
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The main aim of the article is to elucidate and trace Jacques Rancière’s American pragmatic heritage. This is exemplified by several (anti)conceptual methods of thinking that the French theorist shares with Ralph Waldo Emerson, Friedrich Nietzsche, and William James. The article examines their shared notions of the symbolic order, transitoriness of concepts, and subjectivization as a way of democratic empowerment of an individual. These three key ideas are then illustrated in the interpreta-tive praxis with Cy Twombly’s anti-conceptual style of painting and the fluid poetry of Frank O’Hara. The conclusion leads to a synthesis of all of these neo-pragmatic approaches into an innovative way of perceiving art and life—through the minute gestures and movements of thought, which are considered by all these thinkers to be more substantial than the substantive concepts themselves.
3. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 53 > Issue: 1
Dylan Shaul Plato and Descartes in Levinas’s Totality and Infinity: Teaching the Good and the Infinite
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This article investigates Levinas’s readings of Plato and Descartes in Totality and Infinity, in relation to the question of teaching. Levinas identifies Plato’s Form of the Good and Descartes’s idea of the infinite as two models for his own conception of the Other. Yet while Levinas lauds Descartes’s theory of teaching, he is highly critical of Plato’s. Plato’s theory of teaching as recollection or maieutics is judged by Levinas to display merely the circular return of the Same to its own interiority. In contrast, the Cartesian God supplies the idea of the infinite to a subject incapable of generating it for itself, offering an account of teaching that respects the Other’s transcendent exteriority. I nonetheless argue for the possibility of a rapprochement between Levinas and Plato with regard to teaching. Ultimately, this serves to bolster Levinas’s own theory of teaching, for which both Plato and Descartes can rightly serve as fitting predecessors.
4. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 53 > Issue: 1
Amir Yaretzky Schelling and the Priority of Philosophy to Art
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In his early writings up unto his so-called “middle period” Schelling treats art as having a crucial role with respect to philosophy. Yet there is no consensus in the secondary literature as to the nature of this role, and the extent to which Schelling changed his mind on the subject. The paper will defend the claim that Schelling holds consistently, from his early texts to the Philosophy of Art, that philosophy is in some sense prior to art while essentially dependent on it. The paper will explore the development of this position from various perspectives. This will shed light on Schelling’s view on both art and philosophy and his view that in the future the two will merge.
book review
5. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 53 > Issue: 1
Khafiz Kerimov The Shadow of God: Kant, Hegel, and the Passage from Heaven to History, by Michael Rosen
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6. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Tal Meir Giladi Hegel on International Recognition
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Scholars have recently argued that Hegel posited international recognition as a necessary feature of international relations. My main effort in this article is to disprove this point. Specifically, I show that since Hegel rejected the notion of an international legal system, he must hold that international recognition depends on the arbitrary will of individual states. To pinpoint Hegel’s position, I offer a close reading of Hegel’s intricate formulations from the final paragraphs of the Philosophy of Right—formulations that are easy to quote out of context just as they are transparent when considered in due context.
7. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Bennett Gilbert Two and One-Half Arguments for Idealism
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John Foster, an Oxford analytical philosopher, and Borden Parker Bowne, the founder of “Boston Personalism” at the turn of the twentieth century both presented unique arguments for idealism that are deeply different from one another. Because neither is now well known, this paper lays out their reasoning as carefully and as clearly as possible, finding Bowne’s case for personalist idealism to be the stronger of the two in terms of ontology. But the inquiry is framed on the problems of the moral affordances of ontology and of the need of moral philosophy for grounding in ontology. Although this is a very large area, a partial conclusion—the “half argument” of the title—is drawn for further development.
8. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Georg Oswald Kant, Schelling, and Hegel on How to Conceive Matter from a Metaphysical Point of View
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Kant, Schelling, and Hegel research has frequently highlighted differences when considering their three respective concepts of philoso-phy. Especially with regard to natural philosophy, there seems to be little common ground between them. In my paper, however, I want to revise this perspective, picking up on what brings them together. Taking the concept of matter as my primary example, I will argue that neither Kant nor Schelling nor Hegel are interested in conceiving of nature from the viewpoint of empirical observation and as independent of the subject. Rather, their respective philosophical inquiries into nature’s first prin-ciples hinge on critical examinations of reason, providing all three with the conceptual resources to address nature from a metaphysical point of view that is ultimately bound up with rational beings.
9. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Alexander Sattar Positive Aesthetic Pleasure in Early Schopenhauer: Two Kantian Accounts
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Schopenhauer is widely held to accommodate no positive aesthetic pleasure. While this may be the case in his mature oeuvre overall, where he insists on the negative character of all gratification, I reconstruct two early accounts of such pleasure in his manuscripts, both of which are a direct result of Schopenhauer’s engagement with Kant’s first and third Critiques. To do so, I analyze his so-called metaphysics of the ‘better consciousness’ and his transition from it to the metaphysics of will (roughly 1811–14). The first account turns out to be an almost literal adoption of Kant’s theory of aesthetic experience as revealing the supersensible character of nature and the cognizing subject. Likewise, Schopenhauer’s second account is a version of the CJ theory of the free interplay of cognitive faculties. These accounts have been underappreciated in Schopenhauer scholarship, but recognizing their importance for the development of his philosophy is essential for gaining a fuller picture of his aesthetics.
book reviews
10. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Juan Rivera Castro Bernardo Kastrup: Decoding Schopenhauer’s Metaphysics: The Key to Understanding How It Solves the Hard Problem of Consciousness and the Paradoxes of Quantum Mechanics
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11. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 3
Robb Dunphy Stephen Houlgate. Hegel on Being Volume One: Quality and the Birth of Quantity in Hegel’s ‘Science of Logic’ and Hegel on Being Volume Two: Quantity and Measure in Hegel’s ‘Science of Logic’
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12. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 2
Joshua M. Hall Pregnant Materialist Natural Law: Bloch and Spartacus’s Priestess of Dionysus
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In this article, I explore two neglected works by the twentieth-century Jewish German Marxist philosopher Ernst Bloch, Avicenna and the Aristotelian Left and Natural Law and Human Dignity. Drawing on previous analyses of leftist Aristotelians and natural law, I blend Bloch’s two texts’ concepts of pregnant matter and maternal law into “pregnant materialist natural law.” More precisely, Aristotelian Left articulates a concept of matter as a dynamic, impersonal agential force, ever pregnant with possible forms delivered by artist-midwives, building Bloch’s messianic utopia. And Natural Law resurrects the Stoics’ concept of natural law as drawing on a prehistoric matriarchal utopia, later channeled by earth goddess cults misconstrued by the nineteenth-century German anthropologist Johann Jakob Bachofen as political matriarchy. I then conclude by linking this pregnant materialist natural law to Dionysus as son of the Great Mother Goddess. Though stigmatized throughout homophobic Western history for his queerness and maternal dependence, Dionysus is also the patron god of Bloch’s hero, the slave revolutionary Spartacus, paramour of a priestess of Dionysus who prophesied his divine mission of liberation.
13. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 2
Karl Kraatz Martin Heidegger's Transcendental Ontology: The Necessity of a Factical Transcendental Subject
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Heidegger’s criticism of the transcendental philosophy of Kant and Husserl is primarily leveled at its underlying understanding of the transcendental subject. Heidegger argues that in order to give an adequate account of the intelligibility of the world, the transcendental subject must be factical. By discussing central aspects of Heidegger’s criticism, this paper shows that his notion of a factical transcendental subject is a necessary step out of aporias of transcendental philosophy. I argue that Heidegger’s emphasis on the facticity of the human being must be understood not as an abandonment of the transcendental standpoint, but as a radicalization of its central ideas. Heidegger is thereby transforming transcendental philosophy into a transcendental ontology. I demonstrate that this allows Heidegger to reconceptualize the constitution of the world as social and historical without having to jettison the role of the transcendental subject.
14. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 2
Yady Oren Fichte's Turn from Absolute I to Absolute Knowledge
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Fichte’s Wissenschaftslehre of 1801/2 is considered to be the beginning of his late phase. In this phase he supposedly alters his earlier thinking and, instead of the transcendental unity of the I, conceptualizes a higher transcendent and simple unity; a unity that has been claimed to correspond to Neoplatonism. I refute these two arguments here. First, through a comparison between the Wissenschaftslehre of 1801/2 and that of 1794/5, I show that both versions contain a similar analysis of the supreme unity. Second, I show that in 1801/2 Fichte explicitly dissociates the supreme unity from transcendence and simplicity. His conception of the supreme unity in fact levels a critique upon such concept of unity. Instead of the transcendent One, which is hierarchically prior to multiplicity, Fichte formulates in both 1794/5 and 1801/2 a complicated concept of the supreme unity. On Fichte’s account, this unity “hovers” between multiplicity and unity as simplicity.
15. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 2
Juan José Rodríguez A Dark Nature: Schelling on the World and Freedom in the Years 1806–1810
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The main aim of this work is to indirectly display, through an analysis of the concepts of world, God, and human freedom, the shift from a harmonious concept of nature to another chaotic, darker, and pre-rational. It is important to relate this transformation, which takes place around 1807, to (I) the change in Schelling’s ideas about the relationship between God and the world to weaken a previous Spinozist monistic standpoint. These changes in turn affect Schelling’s view of the concept of unity. He now modifies the notions of immanence and pantheism in favour of a (II) dualistic doctrine of particular and finite existence that we could relate to Kierkegaard and later existentialists. Finally, (III) we introduce Schelling’s theory of love. Love is a mode of union through free will and personal choice that neutralizes the totalizing metaphysics of identity associated to the systematic construction of idealism from Spinoza to Hegel, and that Schelling criticizes, in his middle and late philosophy, as a resource to a self-transparent and overdetermining Absolute.
book review
16. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 2
Renxiang Liu George di Giovanni. Hegel and the Challenge of Spinoza: A Study in German Idealism, 1801–1831
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17. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 1
Emiliano Diaz Typical Subjectivity: Transcendental Phenomenology and the Possibility of Intersubjectivity
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Husserl’s theory of types is most often associated with his account of perception. Here, types operate as pre-predicative frames of experience that guide the perception of objects. In this paper, I will argue that Husserl’s theory of types is also central to his account of intersubjectivity. More specifically, I will show that a foundational kind of typical subjectivity is entailed by his discussion of the sphere of ownness. It is by way of this type that even a solitary subject can tacitly anticipate the possibility of other subjects. It is also this type that is enriched through interactions between actual subjects.
18. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 1
Naomi Fisher, Kevin Mager Schelling Responds to Kant: The Bruno Critique of One-Sided Idealism
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In the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant criticizes his predecessors, specifically Locke and Leibniz, in their one-sided reductions of representation to a single faculty. In his 1802 dialogue Bruno, Schelling develops this discussion into a criticism of Kant’s own one-sided idealism. Focusing on these developments makes clear the manner in which Schelling sees himself as advancing beyond both pre-Critical realisms and Kant’s transcendental idealism. He subsumes realism and Kantian idealism within his own absolute standpoint, providing a ground and rationale for both types of philosophical system as independent approaches, and he asserts that the ultimate foundation and unity of these systems of philosophy is in the absolute which is beyond conceptual thought.
19. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 1
Stefan Schick Which Comes First—Acting or Judging?: F. H. Jacobi’s and Hegel’s Foundations of a Metaphysical Pragmatism of Freedom
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It is one of the crucial insights of pragmatism that our judging is itself a discursive practice. Our judgments are normatively determined performances for which we are responsible. Therefore, judgments are a species of action. For in both actions and judgments, we subject ourselves and others to justifiable norms. Since these insights can already be found in Hegel, Hegel is now often interpreted as a champion of pragmatism. Hegel’s logic is thereby mainly understood as the continuation of the Kantian project of transcendental philosophy. Based upon this pragmatist interpretation of Hegel, the paper reads F. H. Jacobi’s philosophy as an alternative pragmatism which is explicitly founded on our life praxis rather than our practice of judgment.
20. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 52 > Issue: 1
Terrence Thomson From Cosmogenesis to Naturphilosophie: Tracing a Path between Kant’s Allgemeine Naturgeschichte and Schelling’s Erster Entwurf
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Whilst Kant’s work has been important for understanding the orbit of Schelling’s Naturphilosophie, this is often considered only in relation to the Critical philosophy. The aim of this paper is to suggest a connection between the pre-Critical Kant and Schelling’s Naturphilosophie. Whilst on the surface this may seem like a futile task, in this paper I hope to show that Schelling was engaged with Kant’s early work and that he even offers a critique of it, opening the path to an until now understated area of scholarship on the relationship between the two thinkers. I analyse one section (the Siebentes Hauptstück) from Kant’s 1755 work, Allgemeine Naturgeschichte und Theorie des Himmels followed by an analysis of one section (the Zweiter Hauptabschnitt) from Schelling’s 1799 work, Erster Entwurf eines Systems der Naturphilosophie.