This paper attempts to rethink the philosophy of Muhammad Iqbal (1877–1938) and challenge the still prevailing tendency in Iqbal scholarship to view it merely as an outcome of the influence of the ideas of various Western/European philosophers. I present Iqbal’s arguments in their particular historical and intellectual context to show that they developed in response to a specific philosophical problem and that Iqbal looked for a solution to that problem in Islamic tradition. I suggest that Iqbal’s philosophy is best understood (...) in the context of, and as a response to, the problem of nihilism as it was debated in modern German philosophy during ‘the pantheism controversy’ in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. To demonstrate this, I analyse Iqbal’s article on ʿAbd al-Karīm al-Jīlī to show his concern with the problem of nihilism, and his solution to it based on al-Jīlī’s Sufism. (shrink)
On what grounds could life be made worth living, given its abundant suffering? Friedrich Nietzsche was among many who attempted to answer this question. While always seeking to resist pessimism, Nietzsche's strategy for doing so, and the extent to which he was willing to concede conceptual grounds to pessimists, shifted dramatically over time. His reading of pessimists such as Eduard von Hartmann, Olga Plümacher, and Julius Bahnsen—as well as their critics, such as Eugen Dühring and James Sully—has been under-explored in (...) the secondary literature, isolating him from his intellectual context. Patrick Hassan's book seeks to correct this. After closely mapping Nietzsche's philosophical development on to the relevant axiological and epistemological issues, it disentangles his various critiques of pessimism, elucidating how familiar Nietzschean themes (e.g. eternal recurrence, aesthetic justification, will to power, and his critique of Christianity) can and should be assessed against this philosophical backdrop. (shrink)
The book Utopia in Dark Romanticism deals with a glorious period of American literature in the first half of the 19th century, but its purpose is not to narrate the history of American literature in the Romantic era, but to reconstruct the geography that was formed with the concept of Utopia in this era.
This third 2021 issue of "SYMPHILOSOPHIE: International Journal of Philosophical Romanticism" contains a main dossier of new research articles guest edited by Leif Weatherby (New York University) and devoted to the topic of early German romanticism and science. In addition to the papers of this main section issue number 3 of SYMPHILOSOPHIE includes translations of primary sources and book reviews. All contents are freely available online.
This article argues for a much more profound interconnection between philosophical romanticism and Walter Benjamin’s theses "On The Concept of History" than has been acknowledged up to now. It particularly reveals a number of parallels between Benjamin’s historical approach and the philosophy of history of the two principal thinkers of Early German Romanticism, Friedrich Schlegel and Novalis, who had already formed the object of Benjamin’s doctoral thesis. It examines Benjamin’s final philosophical work in the light of three central topics inherited (...) from Early German Romanticism, which have been less explored in romanticism studies and Benjamin scholarship, yet are decisive for helping clarify what is at stake in Benjamin’s text: the relation to prophecy; the question of messianism; and the heliotropism of the past. -/- _____________ Cet article défend l’idée d’un lien entre la philosophie romantique et les thèses de Walter Benjamin Sur le concept d’histoire bien plus profond qu’on ne l’a admis jusqu’à présent. Il met plus particulièrement en lumière des parallèles entre la démarche historique de Benjamin et la philosophie de l’histoire des deux principaux penseurs du premier romantisme allemand, Friedrich Schlegel et Novalis, auxquels Benjamin avait déjà consacré sa thèse de doctorat. L’article examine le dernier écrit majeur de Benjamin à la lumière de trois thématiques centrales héritées du romantisme, qui ont été peu approfondies tant dans les études romantiques que dans le commentaire benjaminien et qui sont pourtant décisives pour éclaircir ce qui est en jeu dans ce texte : le rapport à la prophétie ; la question du messianisme ; et l’héliotropisme du passé. (shrink)
In this chapter, Robb Dunphy is concerned with the nature of G.E. Schulze's scepticism as he presents it in his 1792 work Aenesidemus, and with its relation to the metaphysical projects of Kant, Reinhold, and later German Idealists. After introducing Schulze's text, Dunphy turns to a recent interpretation offered by Jessica Berry, who claims that the extent to which Schulze endorsed a genuinely Pyrrhonian Scepticism has gone unacknowledged, both by his idealist contemporaries and by the majority of the secondary literature (...) on the period. Berry suggests that this unacknowledged Pyrrhonism in Aenesidemus provides the resources for a more radical criticism of the German Idealists' scientific, systematic metaphysical ambitions, to which they remain fundamentally vulnerable. Despite agreeing that an exploration of Schulze's debt to Pyrrhonism represents a valuable addition to our understanding of his scepticism, in the latter parts of the chapter Dunphy suggests that the Berry's attribution of a Pyrrhonian Scepticism to Schulze should to some extent be rejected, and that such a scepticism is perhaps not quite as problematic for the projects of Kant and the German Idealists as she suggests. (shrink)
In this chapter, Gerda Walther weds her interest in political and social questions with phenomenological approaches and concerns, homing in on the nature of a social community. By posing and responding to a series of questions regarding the nature and structure of a community, Walther distinguishes community from society and argues that community is crucially connected to subjective feeling. In addition, she contends—contra Edith Stein and Edmund Husserl—that the feeling of community both differs from and precedes the feeling of empathy.
In this chapter, Edith Stein offers an analysis of empathy with others, which she sees as a fundamental trait of the human being. In her view, empathy is a condition of possibility for sociality and sympathy, rather than the other way around. She grounds empathy in human embodiment, more precisely in the way in which the human being is embodied mind and minded body. Stein’s work on empathy represents a pathbreaking contribution to phenomenology and shows how she makes active use (...) of and goes beyond the works of Edmund Husserl, Alexander Pfänder, and others. (shrink)
In her essays and speeches, Clara Zetkin argues that the workers’ movement and the women’s movement are co-dependent, and that it is only if male and female workers cooperate that they will be able to overcome economic and social injustices and inequalities. Furthermore, she analyzes different forms of oppression, explains how they relate to and enable one another, and makes appeals for international solidarity with oppressed people everywhere.
In this chapter, Rosa Luxemburg examines the basic structure of wage labor. For Luxemburg, wage labor is a condition for the systemic, economical exploitation of one free human being by another. Luxemburg analyzes the capitalists’ thinking about wages, their interest in extending the workday and in lowering the pay, and the conflict of interest between the worker and the owner of capital. She also discusses the role of trade unions in keeping not only the real wages but also the social (...) wages above the level of mere sustenance for the individual worker. (shrink)
In this chapter, Lou Andreas-Salomé explores the erotic (widely conceived), as it discloses a pre-reflective and foundational aspect of life. The erotic, for Salomé, is prior to the split between mind and body, even between the individual and nature, as a totality. In her view, the erotic is related to sexuality but also to art, creativity, and even religion. The chapter establishes Salomé as a philosopher who carves out an independent intellectual space between Nietzsche and Freud.
In this chapter, which includes four independent essays, Hedwig Dohm develops arguments for women’s emancipation, articulates a critique of essentialism, and assesses the claims of anti-feminists, including Friedrich Nietzsche. Although Dohm was influenced by Nietzsche, she was also one of his fiercest critics. Dohm offers some of the most acute observations of the situation of women at various stages of life––from young adulthood to old age. While her conceptualization of the self as creative and her support of single mothers and (...) unmarried women were radical for the time, her ideas prefigure some of the key claims made by twentieth-century feminists. (shrink)
This chapter presents selections from Bettina Brentano von Arnim’s 1840 Günderode. Günderode is based on a correspondence between Brentano von Arnim and her friend Karoline von Günderrode. In its attempt to convey an intimate and engrossing dialogue between the two friends, Günderode is an exemplary realization of the romantic ideals of sym-philosophy and sociability. A hit in Germany and the United States, Günderode delves into fundamental philosophical questions, including the value of philosophy and its potential to grasp and describe human (...) experience, and the relationship between philosophy and art. (shrink)
This chapter presents three unpublished works by Karoline von Günderrode. In them, Günderrode discusses and assesses the moral philosophy of Johann Gottlieb Fichte and Friedrich Schelling’s philosophy of nature, while also developing her own ethical account of the human relation to the earth in the essay “Idea of the Earth.” Widely regarded as her most important and radical contribution, “Idea of the Earth” distinguishes Günderrode among her contemporaries and places her in proximity to current environmental thought.
An English translation of, and commentary on, German writer Karoline von Günderrode's poem "Muhammad's Dream in the Desert," in Issue 2 of Synkrētic: The Journal of Indo-Pacific Philosophy (reprinted with modifications from an earlier entry on my blog at ACEzekiel dot com) This journal is open-access and full of run reads.
This chapter considers the philosophical contributions of German writer Karoline von Günderrode (1780–1806). Günderrode's work participates in debates regarding the question of free will, the nature of the self, the nature of consciousness, what happens to us after we die, the vocation of humankind, the relationship between the self and nature and between these and the Absolute or the divine, the role of gender in social life, ideals for political arrangements, and the pursuit of virtue and beauty. Günderrode’s writings provide (...) a rich and relatively unexplored perspective on these topics. After a biography and overview of Günderrode’s writings, the chapter summarizes key areas of Günderrode’s thought. These include Günderrode’s metaphysical claims, unique accounts of love and death, models of consciousness and identity, political theory (especially regarding revolution), contributions to early nineteenth century understandings of gender, and nascent ethics and aesthetics. The last section of the chapter considers ways that Günderrode might have influenced several well-known nineteenth century thinkers, notably Clemens Brentano, Georg Friedrich Creuzer, and Bettina Brentano-von Arnim – and, through the latter, the Young Hegelians and American Transcendentalism. (shrink)
Both Novalis and Günderrode provide grounds for a number of different kinds of hope. The first part of this chapter briefly sketches the most obvious of these: the hope for union with loved ones after death. This section also explains Günderrode’s metaphysics, which entails significant differences from Novalis in the other areas of hope that she identifies. Part two explores “epistemological hope”: the hope for knowledge or experience of that which lies outside the limitations of reason. Part three considers Günderrode’s (...) “moral hope,” which emerges from her critique of Kantian morality. Finally, parts four and five consider “political hope” and “ontological hope,” i.e., hope for improvement in the world as a whole and human society in particular. For Novalis, this famously takes the form of “raising,” “Romanticizing” or “cultivating,” effected by human beings. In Günderrode, this kind of improvement is largely beyond human control (although human beings can contribute to it), leaving us in a state of hopeful ambiguity regarding the possibility of the eventual realization of an “immortal ideal” for the earth and the establishment of ideal human communities. (shrink)
In 1804, when asked by the aspiring writer Clemens Brentano why she had chosen to publish her work, Karoline von Günderrode wrote that she longed “mein Leben in einer bleibenden Form auszusprechen, in einer Gestalt, die würdig sei, zu den Vortreflichsten hinzutreten, sie zu grüssen und Gemeinschaft mit ihnen zu haben.” In light of this kind of statement, it is perhaps not surprising if, despite some exceptions, much of the still relatively scant literature on Günderrode reads her works largely in (...) terms of how they articulate and manifest Günderrode’s desires, frustrations, and character, for the most part ignoring their imaginary, creative, and intellectual aspects. This interpretation of the author’s works as biography is, in Günderrode’s case, often accompanied by an interpretation of her biography, particularly her suicide, as literary work. This paper is not the first to question the conflation of Günderrode’s life, death, and writing, but it is one of only a handful that aim to address the autopoietic element of Günderrode’s work in a way that does not reduce her writings to biographical and psychological expressions, or Günderrode herself to an image – or a legend – encapsulated by her writings and her relationship to them. This paper argues that Günderrode’s own position on what the self is has been largely neglected as a result of this conflation, and that taking this position into account changes how we understand Günderrode’s articulations of self in her writings. Thus this paper has two goals: to address difficulties in articulating and even constituting oneself sincerely when one’s efforts are unrecognized, belittled, censored, and forced to conform to the conventions of a society in which one is marginalized; and to unearth a neglected and potentially rich account of the modern self. (shrink)
This paper considers how women and gender are conceptualised within early German Romanticism and argues that work by early German Romantic women should be addressed in scholarship on this movement. The chapter addresses feminist critiques of early German Romanticism as exemplified by the work of Friedrich Schlegel and Novalis, concluding that an essentialist view of traditional gender characteristics informs central aspects of these writers’ work, including their view of the relationship between human beings and nature and their theories of language (...) and poetry. The paper argues that a thoroughgoing critique of gender categories and development of the implications of this critique are found in the early German Romantic writings, not of Schlegel and Novalis, but of Dorothea Veit-Schlegel and Karoline von Günderrode. (shrink)
This paper argues that Karoline von Günderrode’s unique account of the socially constructed self provides a model for satisfying relationships and a stable self on the basis of a fragmented and untransparent subjectivity. Günderrode views experience as a discontinuous series of moments out of which a self can be constructed in two ways, both involving interactions with others. One of these is narrative; the other is a form of immediate experience, including experiencing together with others, that precedes narrative accounts of (...) identity. For Günderrode, the most important ways of interacting with others involve sharing thoughts, feelings and experiences without attempting to integrate these into a more holistic image of, or story about, the person with whom one is interacting. The result is a model for relationships between transitory, opaque selves that creates a basis for social interaction and the construction of identity that can survive and flourish without a stable self that is completely known to itself and others. -/- This journal is open access and includes so many wonderful articles. (shrink)
The investigation that I am going to pursue here is part of a larger effort on my part to understand the relationship between Kant’s so-called “philosophical anthropology” and the development of early German anthropology since it is my sense that Kant had a determinate, if indirect, effect on the history of that separate field. For now this larger project has three main foci: an account of Kant’s philosophical anthropology in all its parts, an inquiry into Kant’s relationship to the theories (...) engaged by German anthropologists between roughly the 1750s-1790s, and finally, an effort to track the subsequent routes taken by German anthropology in the first half of the 19th-c. In this discussion I am going look at one particular trajectory in anthropological research where we can see Kant’s effect. (shrink)
The term “existentialism” was coined in the 1940s. Whereas other books regarding existentialism merely repeat the platitudes that “There is no such thing as existentialism” or that “The term ‘existentialism’ has no coherent meaning,” this two-volume set actually answers the question “What is existentialism?” ------- Volume I identifies the seven (7) principles of existentialism and the necessary and sufficient conditions for a philosophy to be existential, and introduces readers to the depth of the problem by showing how the question “What (...) is existentialism?” can be answered in multiple ways, all of which are provided in this two-volume set. ------- Vol. I, then, provides the “archaeological” answer to the question by showing the philosophical framework existentialism inherited from transcendental philosophy. Vol. I also provides the “genealogical” answer by tracing the history of the thematization of this framework through German Romanticism, concluding with an illustration of how the major existential philosophers: Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre, and Marcel, expressed and developed the principles of existentialism. ------- Volume II provides a discussion of essential distinctions with which to correctly understand, and formulate thoughts about, existentialism, for example, discussions of existentialism as a kind of character ethics, existentialism as a critique of Descartes’ philosophy, the difference between existential individuality and modern subjectivity, and a discussion of the “moment of vision.” ------- Vol. II concludes, then, with a discussion of how existential philosophy takes be-ing, as an end-in-itself, as its point of origin. Vol. II also provides a number of helpful appendices. These appendices address some miscellaneous, though important, concerns regarding existentialism, and provide charts illustrating the interrelations between the key concepts of existentialism. (shrink)
Neste livro, Jane Kneller foca o papel da imaginação como uma força criativa na estética de Kant e em toda sua filosofia. Ela analisa a explicação de Kant para a liberdade imaginativa e a relação entre a representação imaginativa livre, o social humano e o desenvolvimento moral, mostrando várias formas nas quais sua estética da reflexão desinteressada explica o interesse moral. Ela localiza esses aspectos da teoria estética de Kant dentro do contexto estético alemão do século XVIII, argumentando que sua (...) contribuição é uma ponte entre as primeiras teorias da educação moral estética e o Pré-Romantismo da última década daquele século. Ao fazer isso, seu livro dialoga com os dois filósofos alemães do Iluminismo e do Romantismo - Kant e Novalis. (shrink)
Karoline von Günderrode’s reputation as a mystical writer makes her a likely candidate as a proponent of a negative philosophy. However, the historical emphasis on Günderrode’s mystical and lyrical writings reflects gender stereotypes about women’s writing and ignores Günderrode’s strengths as an epic and historical writer. It is therefore important to approach claims about Günderrode’s supposed mysticism carefully. This paper is a preliminary attempt to investigate Günderrode’s claims about knowledge, including knowledge of the absolute, asking: What does Günderrode think knowledge (...) is? What does she think the purpose of knowledge is—i.e., what does she think knowledge gets us, or does for us? And how do her claims differ from those philosophers, such as Novalis, whose thinking on knowledge (including of the absolute) seems to resemble hers? I argue that Günderrode maintains that human beings can experience, or “know,” a reality behind the discrete objects and events that comprise the world of appearances, and that she integrates this idea into a coherent worldview in a unique way. Specifically, I argue that Günderrode reconceptualizes the nature of death and selfhood in specific ways that allow her to make sense of the possibility of experiencing the true nature of the world behind the divisions that are characteristic of human knowledge and existence. (shrink)
Freud introduces his dualistic theory of the life and death drives in Beyond the Pleasure Principle. Much of that essay is devoted to the justification of the death drive, while little is said in defense of the introduction of “life drives” and “Eros,” which he claims are simply an extension of his libido theory from the psychological into the biological realm. In this essay, I argue that Eros is, on the contrary, fundamentally incompatible with Freud’s metapsychology. I first show that (...) Freud’s theory of society permits the production and preservation of social bonds only through the restraint of sexual aims rather than, as the theory of Eros would require, through the satisfaction of sexual drives. I then demonstrate that Eros is incompatible with three key elements of Freud’s metapsychology: the theories of the drives, the pleasure principle, and the principle of constancy. Finally, I argue that the death drive is indistinguishable from the early and late theories of the principle of constancy. Consequently, it is the death drive, and not Eros, that is merely an extension of the original libido theory. Because Eros is incompatible with the very foundations of Freud’s metapsychology, his drive theory can only consistently be interpreted as a monism of the death drive. (shrink)
Throughout Herman Hesse's "Demian," the strategic use of verbal irony is a powerful tool to shed light on Sinclair's arduous journey in navigating his immaturity and eventual growth. Sinclair's initial hesitancy to confront his callowness is evident as he cautiously explores his evolving sense of self through interactions with friends and family. He often cloaks his true feelings in indirect speech, avoiding confrontations with the consequences of his immaturity. As Sinclair matures, he finds himself straddling the delicate balance between the (...) security of his familial cocoon and the intimidating outside world. He grapples with the fear that speaking his unfiltered thoughts and facing the repercussions might jeopardize the comfort of his closest relationships, guiding him on his path. Despite his awareness of the existential loneliness and isolation that awaits him beyond these relationships, he yearns for personal growth, even if it entails enduring solitude and pain. The use of verbal irony plays a pivotal role in illuminating the gradual transformation Sinclair undergoes as he shifts from callousness to a budding acceptance of his existential reality, ultimately coming to terms with his true self. This transformation is evident in moments such as when Demian chastises him for attempting to offer money to Kromer, when he grapples with the guilt of hurting Pistorius, and when his father confronts him during his time at the boarding school. (shrink)
In this chapter I explore, in some cases for the first time, the significance of the ethical, liberatory dimension of Spinoza’s thought among a number of women philosophers across the long nineteenth century’s German tradition. I begin with brief discussions of Elise Reimarus and Charlotte von Stein. I then proceed to more in-depth treatments of Caroline Michaelis- Böhmer-Schlegel-Schelling and Karoline von Günderrode, stressing not only that we may learn about both in drawing out a link to Spinoza or Spinozism, but (...) likewise that we can deepen our understanding of Spinoza in bringing him into dialogue with each (in particular regarding, respectively, the importance of others for self-expression, as well as the metaphysical and ethical status of death, especially suicide). I conclude with a discussion of the turn-of-the-century thinkers Lou Salomé as well as Resa von Schirnhofer, Anna Tumarkin, and especially Elisabeth Schmitt—some of the first academic women philosophers in the German-language context, all closely engaged with Spinoza’s writings—before presenting final remarks concerning the status of Spinoza’s thought in the present context. (shrink)
This book sheds new light on the fascinating – at times dark and at times hopeful – reception of classical Yoga philosophies in Germany during the nineteenth century. -/- When debates over God, religion, and morality were at a boiling point in Europe, Sanskrit translations of classical Indian thought became available for the first time. Almost overnight India became the centre of a major controversy concerning the origins of western religious and intellectual culture. Working forward from this controversy, this book (...) examines how early translations of works such as the Bhagavad Gītā and the Yoga Sūtras were caught in the crossfire of another debate concerning the rise of pantheism, as a doctrine that identifies God and nature. It shows how these theological concerns shaped the image of Indian thought in the work of Schlegel, Günderrode, Humboldt, Hegel, Schelling, and others, lasting into the nineteenth century and beyond. Furthermore, this book explores how worries about the perceived nihilism of Yoga were addressed by key voices in the early twentieth century Indian Renaissance – notably Dasgupta, Radhakrishnan, and Bhattacharyya – who defended sophisticated counter-readings of their intellectual heritage during the colonial era. -/- Written for non-specialists, _Indian Philosophy and Yoga in Germany_ will be of interest to students and scholars working on nineteenth-century philosophy, Indian philosophy, comparative philosophy, Hindu studies, intellectual history, and religious history. -/- The Gold Open Access version of this book has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND) 4.0 license. (shrink)
In this chapter I compare the concept of hope as affect in the psychology of Kant and Hoffbauer, pointing out continuities and discontinuities between their discussions of this concept. I sketch the negative aspects of hope in Kant’s work, and his responses to questions of how hope can impair the objectivity of judgments about the future and what the negative effects of this impairment are. Although Kant does not consider hope as essentially an affect, he maintains that, in some kind (...) of (pre-rational) natural state of human existence, it does function as an affect, and, as a result, impairs our cognitive faculties. In order to prevent such an impairment, he claims, we need to use reason to govern all our faculties. Hoffbauer takes up this idea in the newly developed context of clinical psychology. The first part of the chapter presents a short sketch of Kant’s psychological concept of hope as affect, focusing on the possible negative effects of hope on the function of human understanding. The second part examines the reception of this Kantian theory in Hoffbauer’s psychology. The analysis in this section focuses on Hoffbauer’s analysis of how the affective impact of hope may cause the inappropriate use of our cognitive faculties, even potentially leading to a serious impairment of our sanity. This psychological perspective sheds new light on Kant’s claim that reason has an essential interest in hope. (shrink)
Karoline von Günderrode (1780–1806) has long enjoyed a reputation as a Romantic poet, but her philosophical contributions have largely been neglected. This paper is one of the first to address Günderrode’s political thought, especially her view of the interrelationship between human society and the broader environment. The paper argues that Günderrode develops resources for reconceiving the relationship of human beings to the nonhuman and to each other that work against an instrumentalizing view of nature and programmatic political ideals. Günderrode’s normative (...) restraint, concept of harmony, and view of human beings as part of and the same in kind as the rest of nature contribute to a vision of sociality, grounded in her metaphysics, that envisions small communities fostering connections between human beings and the nonhuman. On Günderrode’s model, these connections can grow and strengthen and eventually, perhaps, enable the emergence of the single, perfect organism that she calls the “realized idea of the earth.”. (shrink)
Sowohl Friedrich Schlegel als auch Joseph Görres reagieren mit ihren Einlassungen auf die Idee des "Ewigen Friedens", wie sie vor allem durch Kant vorgetragen und um 1800 durch eine Vielzahl von Autoren im Angesicht einer stürmischen und kriegerischen Zeitenwende diskutiert wurden -/- With their statements, both Friedrich Schlegel and Joseph Görres react to the idea of "eternal peace", as it was primarily put forward by Kant and discussed by a large number of authors around 1800 in the face of a (...) stormy and warlike turning point in time -/- Своими высказываниями и Фридрих Шлегель, и Йозеф Гёррес реагируют на идею «вечного мира», как она была в первую очередь выдвинута Кантом и обсуждалась большим числом авторов около 1800 года перед лицом бурного и воинственного перелома во время -/- Con sus declaraciones, tanto Friedrich Schlegel como Joseph Görres reaccionan a la idea de “paz eterna”, tal y como fue planteada principalmente por Kant y discutida por un gran número de autores hacia 1800 ante un tormentoso y bélico punto de inflexión. a tiempo. (shrink)
The paper addresses Thiodolf Rein’s (1838–1919) view of empiricist philosophies, which arrived in Finland in the second half of the nineteenth century. Rein was the key figure of Finnish philosophy towards the end of the nineteenth century. His philosophy was strongly influenced by Hermann Lotze (1817–1881), probably the most distinguished German philosopher of the time. In his main work, "Försök till en framställning af psykologin eller vetenskapen om själen" (Attempt at a presentation of psychology, or the science of the soul, (...) 1876–1891), Rein attempts to reconcile modern natural science and its empirical methodology with idealist metaphysics. His chief concern is to refute the claim that the results of natural science corroborate materialism. Whereas Lotze had only shortly commented on Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, Rein attempts to integrate Darwin’s theory into his idealist metaphysics. Besides philosophy, Rein’s arguments had also implications for broader political and cultural issues of the time. (shrink)
Max Stirner’s The Unique and Its Property (1844) is the first ruthless critique of modern society. In All Things are Nothing to Me, Jacob Blumenfeld reconstructs the unique philosophy of Max Stirner (1806–1856), a figure that strongly influenced—for better or worse—Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Emma Goldman as well as numerous anarchists, feminists, surrealists, illegalists, existentialists, fascists, libertarians, dadaists, situationists, insurrectionists and nihilists of the last two centuries. -/- Misunderstood, dismissed, and defamed, Stirner’s work is considered by some to be the (...) worst book ever written. It combines the worst elements of philosophy, politics, history, psychology, and morality, and ties it all together with simple tautologies, fancy rhetoric, and militant declarations. That is the glory of Max Stirner’s unique footprint in the history of philosophy. -/- Jacob Blumenfeld wanted to exhume this dead tome along with its dead philosopher, but discovered instead that, rather than deceased, their spirits are alive and quite well, floating in our presence. All Things are Nothing to Me is a forensic investigation into how Stirner has stayed alive throughout time. (shrink)
In the last forty years Dummett, Hanks, Künne, and Bobzien have claimed that when Frege wrote ‘Über Sinn und Bedeutung’, he thought that the sense of a sentence-question [Satzfrage] was not a thought [Gedanke] ((Dummett 1981: 307–308); (Hanks 2007: 142–143); (Künne 2010: 427–429); (Bobzien 2021: 163–164)). Recently, Textor has claimed that when Frege wrote ‘Über Sinn und Bedeutung’, he thought that the sense of a sentence-question was not a question [Frage] (Textor 2021: 227 fn.2). I think it is possible that (...) when Frege wrote ‘Über Sinn und Bedeutung’, he thought that the sense of a sentence-question was a question and a thought. To show that this possibility should not be overlooked, I have written a dialogue in which Frege responds to Dummett, Hanks, Künne, Bobzien, and Textor. -/- Bobzien seems to think that when Frege wrote ‘Die Verneinung’, he thought that the sense of a sentence-question was not a question (Bobzien 2021: 163–165). I think it is possible that when Frege wrote ‘Die Verneinung’, he thought that the sense of a sentence-question was a question and a thought. Hence, I have also written the dialogue to show that this possibility should not be overlooked either. (shrink)
Even though Frege is a major figure in the history of analytic philosophy, it is not surprising that there are still issues surrounding his views, interpreting them, and labeling them. Frege’s view on numbers is typically termed as ‘Platonistic’ or at least a type of Platonism (Reck 2005). Still, the term ‘Platonism’ has views and assumptions ascribed to it that may be misleading and leads to mischaracterizations of Frege’s outlook on numbers and ideas. So, clarification of the term ‘Platonism’ is (...) required to portray Frege’s views more accurately (Reck 2005). This clarification gives us a better picture of what Frege is interested in and what he does not emphasize. Moreover, in such a clarifying process, we find that Frege draws significant influence from Rudolf Hermann Lotze, who is frequently called a Neo-Kantian (Vagnetti 2018). In Lotze’s major work, Logik, Lotze has a central focus on validity, in its most general form as he used it, that investigates various related topics, i.e., concepts, language, etc. (Vagnetti 2018; Lotze 1888). Furthermore, we observe that Frege’s work is so similar to Lotze, that it seems questionable to call his outlook ‘Platonism’. Therefore, attributing ‘Platonism’ to Frege may be a slight misnomer. This paper’s entirety is mostly a synthesis of a variety of articles related to Frege, Lotze, and their respective outlooks and the original works of Frege and Lotze that I use to support the view that the term ‘Platonism’ is a slight issue when predicated to Frege. As such, I include an overview of Frege’s treatment in other work that highlights the usage of the term ‘Platonism’ and how broad its uses tend to be utilized (Balaguer 2006; Burge 1992). In sum, it is observed that the general label ‘Platonism’ becomes less appropriate when we consider Lotze in the picture and contrast Lotze alongside Mr. Frege. Overall, this paper is just an explanatory one of Mr. Frege, the Platonist, and the issues of applying the term ‘Platonism’ onto him as his views are seemingly more of a segue from Lotze. Keywords: Frege, Lotze, number, objectification, Platonism, validity. (shrink)
Der Relativismus gehört zu den wichtigsten Themen von Simmels Philosophie. Die Bedeutung des Relativismus wird anhand dreier Aspekte skizziert: Erstens betont Simmel selbst die zentrale Stellung des Relativismus für seine philosophische Entwicklung. Zweitens hat Simmel aufgrund seines Bekenntnisses zum Relativismus einen besonderen Platz in der Geschichte der deutschsprachigen Philosophie. Simmel war vermutlich der erste deutschsprachige Philosoph, der seine Position als eine relativistische charakterisierte und diese gegenüber der antirelativistischen Grundhaltung seiner Zeitgenossen verteidigte. Drittens besteht in Simmels Versuchen den positiven Gehalt des (...) Relativismus zu bestimmen die Aktualität seiner Philosophie. (shrink)
Discursive cognition of the sort that accompanies the grasp of a natural language involves an ability to self-govern by framing and following rules concerning what reason prescribes. In this essay I argue that the formal features of a planning semantics for the deontic and intentional modalities suggest a picture on which shared intentional mental states are a more primitive kind of cognition than that which accompanies the ability to frame and follow a rule, so that deontic cognition—and the autonomous rationality (...) attending the ability to speak a natural language—might be understood as an evolutionary development out of the capacity to share intentions. In the course of defending this picture, I argue that it is supported by work in social psychology, evolutionary anthropology, and primatology concerning the phylogenetic and ontogenetic development of norm psychology and shared intentionality in human beings. (shrink)