Hegel's claim about democracy and his philosophy of history

In Will Dudley (ed.), Hegel and History. State University of New York Press. pp. 195-211 (2009)
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Hegel claims democracy is inappropriate for a modern state and offers two justifications: an empirical one focusing on the failure of existing democracies; and a metaphysical one focusing on the inappropriateness for the modern state of the ideal of individual sovereignty that Hegel associates with democracy. This paper shows how Hegel’s discussion of democracy is relevant to the broader interpretive questions of whether Hegel’s understanding of history and of the development of political institutions is truly empirical and whether Hegel accepts the relativist implications of an empirical approach.



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Mark Tunick
Florida Atlantic University

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