Where Does Hegel’s Philosophy Come From?

The answer is fairly simple: close reading of the history of philosophy. Reading Hegel’s lectures on the history of philosophy (of which there is still not modern English translation, only an old version republished with new covers and a volume of “important bits”) makes this point also fairly obvious. Hegel’s comments regarding his own philosophy are found throughout the lectures. For example, when he gets to Heraclitus, he says quite clearly that “es ist kein Satz des Heraklit, den ich nicht in meine Logik aufgenommen.” [Werke, 18:320]. Most of the discussions related to Greek philosophy ends up in some middle between the philosophical views of those under investigation and Hegel’s own views. Reading his reflections on, say, Xeno or Heraclitus while also reading the first sections of the Logic (Sein – Das Dasein – Das Fürsichsein) is rather informative.

Maimon Reading Group: Chapter 7 Rejoinder.

This rejoinder is meant to add some of my observations to those already made by Utisz. Hopefully this will be helpful, these are the sorts of issues I found interesting in Chapter 7. Generally, these reflections are an attempt to tackle Utisz’ question: How far, if at all, is Maimon disagreeing with Kant or taking the idea in a direction other than Kant’s intention?

Although, as Utisz points out, chapter 7 is rather short, it’s certainly not lacking in depth. If we take extensive and intensive magnitudes as attempts not only to think about quantitative and qualitative differences, but also as a continuation of the previous discussion of the nature of cognition, then the “definition” of extensive and intensive magnitudes, it seems to me, is the central claim of the chapter: Continue reading

Hegel’s Heidelberg Writings Reviewed

This text — first in a projected series, under the general editorship of Michael Baur — presents two essays from Hegel’s stint at Heidelberg in 1816-18. One essay, previously untranslated, reassesses the philosophical significance of F.H. Jacobi, who had been roundly criticized by the young Hegel in Faith and Knowledge (1802). The other, partially translated by T.M. Knox in Hegel’s Political Writings (Oxford, 1964), is an extended polemic against the Proceedings of the Assembly of the Württemberg Estates, 1815-16. The series aims to offer “translations of the best modern German editions of Hegel’s work in a uniform format suitable for Hegel scholars, together with philosophical introductions and full editorial apparatus” (p. i). This inaugural volume gets things off to an excellent start.

The rest of the review is here.

New Translation of Hegel’s Science of Logic

If you weren’t aware of this, you are now – start saving money! George di Giovanni’s new translation of the formidable Science of Logic is out in September 2010 (but it’s already listed on amazon.com at a whooping $180, $121.50):

This new translation of The Science of Logic (also known as ‘Greater Logic’) includes the revised Book I (1832), Book II (1813), and Book III (1816). Recent research has given us a detailed picture of the process that led Hegel to his final conception of the System and of the place of the Logic within it. We now understand how and why Hegel distanced himself from Schelling, how radical this break with his early mentor was, and to what extent it entailed a return (but with a difference) to Fichte and Kant. In the introduction to the volume, George di Giovanni presents in synoptic form the results of recent scholarship on the subject, and, while recognizing the fault lines in Hegel’s System that allow opposite interpretations, argues that the Logic marks the end of classical metaphysics. The translation is accompanied by a full apparatus of historical and explanatory notes.

• Includes a substantial introductory study that places Hegel’s Logic in an historical and conceptual context • Explains key terms and translations • Sets the text out in a clear and accessible manner, including Hegel’s own style points, making it easier to read


Acknowledgments; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Notes on the translation; The Science of Logic: Preface to the first edition; Preface to the second edition; Introduction; Book I: the doctrine of being; Book II: essence; Book III: the doctrine of the concept; Appendix: Hegel’s logic in its revised and unrevised parts; Bibliography; Index.

The Cambridge Hegel Translations will have An Encyclopedia Logic out in September as well.

Hegel Pippin Conference at Kalamazoo

The conference is devoted to a critical examination of Robert Pippin’s Hegel’s Practical Philosophy: Rational Agency as Ethical Life – more specifically, to the model of agency Pippin’s ascribes to Hegel. For some 2 decades now, Pippin has advanced and defended a novel interpretation of Hegel as radicalizing Kant’s critical philosophy. In this book, Pippin presents Hegel’s account of freedom as rejecting most contemporary models of agency and freedom: e.g. voluntarism, incompatibilism, naturalist, and dualist. According to Pippin, Hegel conceives of agency, not as causal power, but as a social status, one maintained by practical and institutional forms of mutual recognition. Freedom is not, in the first instance, the absence of obstacles, the exercise of a causal power, or the possession of a social good. Instead, freedom is a social status, one in which the self-ascription and attribution of intentions is first made determinant, not prospectively by the individual agent but retrospectively within the social community. Against both liberalism and communitarianism, Hegel present a model of rational agency as ethical life, which makes freedom possible. Conference participants critically examine Pippin’s model of agency in terms of contemporary issues of critical social theory, philosophy of the social sciences, philosophy of mind, and political philosophy.

More information here.

Hegel’s Theory of Justice

A chapter from Axel Honneth’s forthcoming book The Pathologies of Individual Freedom is available here.

Hegel’s Philosophy of Right—which once divided the most talented minds of a whole generation and which made the distinction between Hegelians on the Right and Hegelians on the Left possible until the middle of the previous century—has obviously lost its polarizing force. In contrast to Kant’s theory of right or John Stuart Mills’s treatise on liberty, which have recently returned into the limelight, Hegel’s book plays the unfortunate part of a classic that is widely read but no longer heard.