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Idealistic Studies

Volume 33, Issue 2/3, Summer/Fall 2003

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Displaying: 1-9 of 9 documents

1. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Jeffrey Bernstein Returns of the Repressed: Transmissions of Spinoza
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This introduction provides the context for the succeeding papers in this volume. After raising the question as to why Spinoza's philosophy attracts such extreme-and extremely diverse-attention and interpretation, I suggest that there is a "repressed" element to his thought which becomes manifest when one perceives the diversity of Spinoza-interpretations in a relational manner. I refer to this repressed element of Spinoza's thought as "the materiality of nature." I claim that the articles in this volume, all of which contain important insights in their own right, attest to this repressed element when taken together and viewed relationally.
2. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Yirmiyahu Yovel Spinoza, the First Anti-Cartesian
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Despite their apparent proximity, Spinoza and Descartes are crucially separated on the most important issues. This paper analyzes Spinoza's major anti-Cartesian positions under four headings: the nature of being; the universe and its laws; the human being; and the method and tasks of philosophy. Issues in metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, the philosophical endeavor etc. are analyzed both in themselves and in their implications for the wider culture and the individual's sense of life. The analysis also brings out (as a target of Spinoza's critique) some of the theology implicit in Descartes' doctrines of substance, the will, the mind, the natural light, and the ethical way.
3. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Julie R. Klein Dreaming with Open Eyes: Cartesian Dreams, Spinozan Analyses
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"Dreaming with open eyes" is a tagline for Spinoza's critique of Descartes; the dreams in question are principally those of volition and the active imagination. In this article, I compare the Cartesian theory of imagination as an active, but not fully rational, power of the mind and the Cartesian account of the volitional self to Spinoza's views. Descartes's own dreams and theories of dreaming are the focus of the first part of the article. Thereafter I examine Spinoza's critique of Descartes and his alternative account of imagination. Finally, I argue that there is a positive sense of dreaming with open eyes to be recuperated in Spinoza's thought. Construed positively, to dream with open eyes is to understand dreams and imagination as natural phenomena and so to be able to respond constructively to them in ethical and political, as well as epistemological, life.
4. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Walter Wright The Shadow of Spinoza In Fichte’s WL 1804
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Spinoza exerted a strong pull on many of the German idealists. This paper explores the evidence of Spinoza's influence on Fichte in the latter's 1804 lectures on his Wissenschaftslehre (the second series). Fichte explicitly mentions Spinoza's names only three times, and each of these references is critical of Spinoza. However, there are other important resonances connecting the thinking of these two philosophers, each of whom faced charges of atheism. These include the priority each grants to practical reason, the accounts each gives of what is genuinely ultimate, and their views about how human beings come into relation with the ultimate.
5. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Joseph P. Lawrence Spinoza in Schelling: Appropriation through Critique
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This paper explores Schelling's life-long fascination with Spinoza. Through moments of ambivalence and enthusiasm, one aspect of the latter's thought remains central for Schelling: the intellectual intuition of God/Nature. While he consistently emphasizes the non-objectifiable nature of the intuition (as constituting the ground of freedom), the influence of Spinoza is still apparent in what Schelling calls the Ullvordellklichkeit des Seills. Freedom is a response to an ungroundable necessity that consciousness lives out of, but behind which it can never penetrate. This insight provokes a reading of Spinoza that departs from the conventional rationalist interpretation and gestures to an a-theological, yet mystical, understanding, which awakens a feeling not only for the sublime in nature, but for the sublime that lies at "the heart of what is." In the ensuing silence of the self, substance reveals itself as living spirit. Through this interpretation, the Neoplatonic truth of Spinoza becomes visible.
6. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Heidi M. Ravven Hegel’s Epistemic Turn—Or Spinoza’s?
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This paper takes issue with Slavoj Zizek's constructed opposition between Spinoza and Hegel. Where Zizek views Hegel's non-dualistic relational epistemology as a substantial improvement over Spinoza's purported dogmatic account of a reality which is external to the perceiver, I argue that Hegel inherited such an epistemology from Spinoza. Ultimately, it is Spinoza who provides Hegel with the conceptual tools for knowledge of the "transphenomenal" within the context of human finitude.
7. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Willi Goetschel Heine’s Spinoza
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A key moment in Spinoza reception, Heine's writing gains sharper theoretical contours when read with careful attention to the way in which he appropriates Spinoza. Heine's portrayal of Spinoza in his On the History of Religion and Philosophy in Germany does not only represent a critical intervention in the project of intellectual history writing that argues for Spinoza's thought to be constitutive for modernity, but Spinoza's presence can also be traced in his poetry and fiction. Heine's original appropriation of Spinoza stages a new way to read Spinoza in the conjunction of Jewish emancipation and German idealism that allows him to advance the claim for both Spinoza's radical critical role in modernity and to legitimate his own poetic project.
8. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
Idit Dobbs-Weinstein Whose History? Spinoza’s Critique of Religion As an Other Modernity
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This paper discusses Spinoza's critique of religion as a visible moment of a radically occluded materialist Judeo-Arabic Aristotelian philosophical tradition. While the prevailing (Christo-Platonic) tradition begins with the familiar gesture to metaphysics as first philosophy, Spinoza's thought (and thus, this Other Tradition) takes politics as its point of departure with its concrete emphasis on a critique of dogma. This paper will show-by way of differing readings of Spinoza-how this materialist tradition becomes occluded by the prevailing tradition, even in the work of such careful materialist Spinoza commentators as Etienne Balibar.
9. Idealistic Studies: Volume > 33 > Issue: 2/3
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