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BOOK REVIEWS 369 individuals, and thus to certain traditional types of political and intellectual history. This methodological bent was supported, on the theoretical level, by a Romantic notion of individualityand by Idealist theories of culture. It was also nourished, at a practical level, by the deep-seated conservatism of most German academics; that is, by their ideological blindness to modern economic realities and modern social conflicts. Especially interesting was lggers's sense that the Rankean commitment to the historical particular depended upon a firm faith in an ultimate unity beyond the diversity of historic cultures. The crisis of the Rankean tradition during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries stemmed partly from the loss of this faith. (Max Weber, for one, experienced the moral situation of his time as a new polytheism .) At the practical level, the crisis of the hermeneutic tradition (and the sense of a plurality of values) coincided with the advent of the "masses" and of social conflict, and with an increased awareness of the irrational element in human affairs. The crisis of the German hermeneutic tradition, it seems to me, forms the real starting point for lggers's new account of European historiography since the Second World War. In his Introduction to the present volume, he posits a more general crisis in the "conventional conception of scientific history," but this strikes me as the least convincing portion of his argument. Implicitly, if not explicitly, Iggers really conceives recent deveopments as a kind of "response" to the crisis of the German hermeneutic tradition, and not as a transformation of earlier forms of scientific history. I say this more to clarify than to criticize. The subject matter of the three essays in the present volume is the new social history. There is a chapter on the Annales school in France, another on contemporary social historians in the two Germanies, and a third on the contribution of Marxist scholarship in England and elsewhere. (Norman Baker's contribution is on England.) Having no space here to summarize adequately what is already a very compressed narrative, I will merely say that all three essays testify to their authors' intelligence and good judgment. Some of the major works, methodological positions, and controversies in' contemporary European historiography are well, through briefly, described. The whole makes lively reading; specialists and non-specialists alike should find it accessible, interesting, and enlightening. lggers is perhaps a little more reserved than necessary about his own position on the methodological questions at issue. Like most historians, he would like to combine the new social scientific interest in objective regularities with some of the older emphasis upon the interpretation of individual thought and action. The difficulty, for him and for most of us, is how to make that combination of two alternatives something more than a compromise and an ad hoc mixture. 1personally suspec! that the methodological debate will have to be sharpened before it can be adequately resolved. But lggers can scarcely be blamed for failing to solve all of our problems. He has drawn up an interesting map of current practices in the discipline; and that in itself is helpful. FRITZ K. RINGER Boston University BOOKS RECEIVED First Editions Ackermann, Robert John. The Philosophy of Karl Popper. Amherst: University of Massachussetts Press, 1976. Pp. x + 212. $15.00. ' The German Conception of History: The National Tradition of Historical Thought from Herder to the Present (Middletown, Conn.: Wesleyan University Press, 1968). 370 HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY Ajatus 36. Aisthesis: Essays on the Philosophy of Perception. Ed. Juha Manninen. Yearbook of the Philosophical Society of Finland. Helsinki: The Philosophical Society of Finland, 1976. Pp. 270. $16.00. Aspects of Time. Ed. C. A. Patrides. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1976. Pp. vi + 270. $25.00. Bird, Otto A. Cultures in Conflict: An Essay in the Philosophy of the Humanities. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1976. Pp. xii + 220. $13.95. Bottin, Francesca. Le Antinomie Semantiche nella Logica Medievale. Padova: Editrice Antenore, 1976. Pp. 222. L. 6,000. Cappelletti, Angel. Diogenes de Apolonia y la segunda filosofia j6nica. Maracaibo: Universidad de Zulia, 1974.~,p. 112. Cappelletti, Angel. Los fragmentos de Diogenes de Apolonia. Caracas: Editorial Tiempo Nuevo, 1975. Pp. 96...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1538-4586
Print ISSN
0022-5053
Pages
pp. 369-372
Launched on MUSE
2008-01-01
Open Access
No
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