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Displaying: 1-18 of 18 documents

1. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Martin Donougho Hegel’s Pragmatics of Tragedy
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This paper attempts in a preliminary way to bring out the ‘pragmatics’ or ‘performativity’ in Hegel’s conception of tragedy and the tragic in the Phenomenology of Spirit. The secondary literature has tended to focus on ethical content (the tragic) at the expense of cultic form and dramaturgical enactment (tragedy); and even with the tragic it has tended to overlook the different linguistic levels in use. I argue that the peculiar term ‘Individualität’ allows Hegel, in chapter VI, to describe a logic of equivocal representation he sees at work in ancient ‘Sittlichkeit’ (ethical life). I argue furthermore that we seriously misrepresent Hegel’s conception of tragedy if we do not include the astonishing claims made of ‘Art-religion’ in chapter VII. Here tragedy takes on a meta-aesthetic color. Hegel sees tragedy as more than an ancient phenomenon, but as a recurring feature in attempts to represent (vorstellen) a speculative truth in sensuous form.
2. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Christopher Lauer Space, Time, and the Openness of Hegel’s Absolute Knowing
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While Hegel argues in the Phenomenology of Spirit’s chapter on “Absolute Knowing” that we must see the necessity of each of spirit’s transitions if phenomenology is to be a science, he argues in its last three paragraphs that such a science must “sacrifice itself ” in order for spirit to express its freedom. Here I trace out the implications of this self-sacrifice for readings of the transitions in the Phenomenology, playing particular attention to the roles that space and time play in absolute spirit’s externalization.
3. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Tom Rockmore Hegel and Epistemological Constructivism
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This is a paper about Hegelian constructivism in relation to theory of knowledge. Constructivism, which is known at least since Greek antiquity, is understood in different ways. In philosophy, epistemological constructivism is often rejected, and only occasionally studied. Kantian constructivism is examined from time to time under the heading of the Copernican revolution. Hegelian constructivism, which is best understood as a reaction to and revision of Kantian epistemology, seems never to have been discussed in detail. This paper will sketch the outlines of Hegelian constructivism in relation to the critical philosophy. Hegelian constructivism amounts to an intrinsically historical view of epistemology as a trial and error process situated in the social context. Knowledge emerges from a trial and error process in which we construct a cognitive framework to grasp objects constructed in and through this process. I suggest that the considerable interest of a historical, constructivist, phenomenological approach to knowledge, such as Hegel’s, lies in its largely unexplored possibilities for advancing the epistemological debate.
4. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Edward Beach Hegel’s Misunderstood Treatment of Gauss in the Science of Logic: Its Implications for His Philosophy of Mathematics
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This essay explores Hegel’s treatment of Carl Friedrich Gauss’s mathematical discoveries as examples of “Analytic Cognition.” Unfortunately, Hegel’s main point has been virtually lost due to an editorial blunder tracing back almost a century, an error that has been perpetuated in many subsequent editions and translations.The paper accordingly has three sections. In the first, I expose the mistake and trace its pervasive influence in multiple languages and editions of the Wissenschaft der Logik. In the second section, I undertake to explain the mathematical significance of Gauss’s discoveries. In the third section, I take a look at the deeper implications of Hegel’s treatment of Gauss’s work as a window onto the nature and limitations of analytic cognition. In conclusion, I seek to explain how the linear method embodied in deductive reason leads by its own inner principle, according to Hegel, to its dialectical Aufhebung (sublation). The result is a kind of deliberately circular reasoning that he describes as “the Absolute Idea.”
5. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
David Vessey Language as Encoding Thought vs. Language as Medium of Thought: On the Question of J. G. Fichte’s Influence on Wilhelm von Humboldt
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In this paper I take up the question of the possible influence of J. G. Fichte on Wilhelm von Humboldt’s theory of language. I first argue that the historical record is unclear, but show that there is a deep philosophical difference between the two views and, as a result of this difference, we should conclude that the influence was small. Drawing on a distinction made by Michael Dummett, I show that Fichte understands language as encoding thought while Humboldt understands language as a medium of thought. The consequences of this difference affect a wide range of issues from their views on the nature of personal pronouns, to their theories of communicative understanding, to their theories of the proper nature of inquiry into language.
6. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Volumes 26–35 Cumulative Index
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7. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 3
Volume 36 Index
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8. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 2
Brian O’Connor A Missing Step In Kant’s Refutation of Idealism
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This paper contends that Kant’s argument in the Refutation of Idealism section of the Critique of Pure Reason misses a step which allows Kant to move illicitly from inner experience to outer objects. The argument for persistent outer objects does not comprehensively address the skeptic’s doubts as it leaves room for the question about the necessary connection between representations and outer objects. A second fundamental issue is the ability of transcendental idealism to deliver the account of outer objects, as required by the Refutation of Idealism itself.
9. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 2
Jason C. Robinson Timeless Temporality: Gadamer’s Discontinuous Historical Awareness
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This article explores Gadamer’s description of time(s) and situates it within his aesthetic account and hermeneutics. Bringing together all of Gadamer’s major discussions on time, I develop a consistent account which I then challenge. Whereas Heidegger famously describes transcendental temporality with an emphasis on futurity, Gadamer accentuates a historical temporal awareness and itsdiscontinuous nature. Gadamer’s notion of time is best understood, paradoxically, as a timeless temporality, when time is defined as the sequential movement along discrete points. I argue that Gadamer’s unique description of temporality, which has been largely ignored by scholars, is essential to his understanding of experience and, therefore, to our understanding of his philosophical hermeneutics.
10. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 2
Michael Futch Leibniz on Time and Substance
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Leibniz’s metaphysics is centered on the claim that ultimate reality is composed of mind-like, immaterial substances, monads. While it is universally agreed that such substances are non-spatial, monads’ relation to time is less clear. In some passages, Leibniz suggests that monads are themselves temporal, yet in others he implies that they have only derived temporal properties in virtue of being connected to phenomenal bodies. This has led to predictable disagreements among commentators, some insisting that monads are intrinsically temporal and some insisting that they are intrinsically non-temporal. In this article, I seek to defend the latter interpretation. To do this, I focus on Leibniz’s account of monadic perception and appetition, arguing that the order of monadic states is given by the intentional content represented therein. This view, I suggest, commits Leibniz to the conclusion that monads are intrinsically non-temporal, having only second-order, derivative temporal properties.
11. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 2
Nectarios G. Limnatis The Canon and the Organon of Thought: Formal Logic and Contradiction In Kant’s Theoretical Philosophy
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This paper looks at the Kantian background in the development of the views on formal logic and contradiction in German Idealism. Assuming the post-Kantian view, I examine what Kant advanced and what he left unsettled, provoking thus the subsequent debate. I start by showing (§1) that already the pre-critical Kant questions the effectiveness of formal logic in philosophical discourse andclaims that the laws of identity and non-contradiction fall short of explaining change, opposition, and contradiction, all these being parts of reality. Turning then to the first Critique, I discuss (§2) the introduction of transcendental logic as the (meta)logic of truth, consider how the tension between formal and transcendental logic is displayed in Kant’s exposition of the antinomy of pure reason (§3), and arrive at the conclusion (§4) that Kant, despite his criticism, and unlike the other great German Idealists, allows formal logic to dominate his exposition of transcendental logic.
12. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 2
Ian Duckles A (Partial) Defense of MacIntyre’s Reading of Kierkegaard
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Among Kierkegaard scholars, there is a great deal of concern regarding how to deal with Alasdair MacIntyre’s treatment of Kierkegaard in his seminal work After Virtue. In this essay, I attempt to defend MacIntyre’s claim that the choice articulated in Kierkegaard’s Either/Or is irrational through a close reading of an essay from a later work by Kierkegaard, Stages on Life’s Way. In so doing, I argue that though MacIntyre’s interpretation of the position articulated in Either/Or is essentially correct, he is mistaken to attribute that position, articulated by a pseudonym, to Kierkegaard. Instead, I argue that Kierkegaard should be seen as strategically employing that position to level a criticism against a certain rationalist tradition in ethics embodied by fi gures as diverse as Kant, Rousseau, and Diderot.
13. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
Anthony N. Perovich Jr. On the Mysticism of Fichte’s The Way Towards the Blessed Life
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Fichte’s The Way towards the Blessed Life is a genuinely mystical work that contains several themes characteristic of mystical writing: the opposition of a non-spatio-temporal, non-manifold being to the world as it appears; the ineffability of the Divine; the centrality of union with God and of detachment; and the individual as a conduit for Divine life and love. It must, however, be granted that Fichte conjoins his affirmations of union with denials that the ontological identity of human beings and God is a matter of experience. This is nevertheless an insufficient reason for denying that Fichte’s text is correctly characterized as mystical, for experience of God’s presence is a more adequate criterion of the mystical than the experience of ontological identity or even of union with God, and the experiences that The Way towards the Blessed Life does acknowledge are properly interpreted in terms of Divine presence.
14. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
Drew M. Dalton Strange Bedfellows: A Re-Examination of the Work of J. G. Fichte In Light of the Levinasian Critique
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Much has been made within certain philosophic circles of Emmanuel Levinas’s interaction with and critique of Western philosophy in general and German Idealism in particular. What is little recognized, however, is that J. G. Fichte is often the hidden target of this salvo. Indeed, Fichte appears within Levinas’s work as one of the major foils against whom he attempts to define his own insights. Whenexamined in light of Levinas’s attack, however, Fichte’s work actually appears to be in remarkable contiguity with Levinas. The aim of this paper is to illuminate these commonalities by making an apology for Fichte in light of Levinas’s criticism. The result of this examination is the revelation that the German Idealism of such thinkers as Fichte, rather than rivaling Levinas’s work, actually proves to be in many ways its ally and intellectual forerunner.
15. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
Dalia Nassar Reality Through Illusion: Presenting the Absolute In Novalis
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Though Novalis was considered by both his contemporaries and his first critics to have made both an important philosophical as well as literary contribution, his place and significance in the history of philosophy has only rarely been clearly demarcated. It is only with the publication of the Novalis Schriften that an interest in Novalis’s philosophical contribution has arisen. Though the main discussion in the literature focuses on one of the central concepts in Novalis’s thought, that of presentation (Darstellung, Repräsentation), it fails to provide an adequate interpretation of it because it does not directly address a more fundamental concept in his thought, the absolute. After all, for Novalis, presentation is always presentation of the absolute, and the possibliity or impossibility of presentation is determined by the nature of the absolute. This paper attempts to correct the contemporary debate by emphasizing and clearly defining the absolute, examining it in relation to presentation.
16. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
Daniel Dwyer A Phenomenology of Cognitive Desire
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In this article I articulate how phenomenology can and should appropriate the theme of Platonic cognitive erôs. Erôs has two principal meanings: sexual passion and the desire for the whole that characterizes the philosophical life; in its cognitive sense, it implies dissatisfaction with partial truth and aiming at the givenness of the whole. The kind of lived-experience in which the being-true of the world is presented to and affectively allures the knower is a phenomenological analogue to what in Plato is the contemplative communion with the Good. Cognitive desire is always motivated by the consciousness of the lack of knowledge and the recalcitranceon the part of the world to be fully revealed. Husserlian phenomenology confirms the fact that erotic perception is always beckoned by the world and its states of affairs from the outside, as opposed to physiologically reduced Cartesian wonder and internally motivated striving on the part of Kantian reason.
17. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
Luis M. Augusto A Little Idealism Is Idealism Enough: A Study on Idealism In Aristotle’s Epistemology
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Given the evidence available today, we know that the later Middle Ages knew strong forms of idealism. However, Plato alone will not do to explain some of its features. Aristotle was the most important philosophical authority in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, but until now no one dared explore in his thought the roots of this idealism because of the dogma of realism surrounding him. I challenge this dogma, showing that the Stagirite contained in his thought the roots of idealist aspects that will be developed, namely by Dietrich of Freiberg and Eckhart of Hochheim, into a fully idealist epistemology.
18. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 36 > Issue: 1
James Mensch Politics and Freedom
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True freedom involves choices whose scope is not limited in advance by a particular dogma. When we attempt to understand it, a number of questions arise. It is unclear, for example, how the openness of real choice can fit into the organized structures of political life. What prevents the expressions of freedom from disrupting this life? What sets limits to their arbitrariness? The general questionhere concerns the adaptability of freedom to a political context. In this paper, I argue that freedom is inherently political because its origin is social. It gains its content from the multiple interactions that make up social life.