In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

Notes and Discussions A SMALL PROBLEM IN HEGEL'S PHENOMENOLOGY In the Preface to the Phenomenology, 1contrary to his announcement in the first paragraph that he will not "explain... the book's relationship to other treatments of the same subject," Hegel spends most of his time comparing, contrasting, and refuting his contemporaries and near-contemporaries. But, to the chagrin of his readers today, he typically carries on such analyses without providing us with identifications for the clearly specific references he is making. Consequently, one of the problems of the Hegel commentator is to determine the identity of the combatants of "this side" and "the other side," particularly in the Phenomenology, where such identities are rarely disclosed. On page 80 (Kaufmann, 28), Hegel offers us the following three-way progression to his own principle that "everything depends on grasping and expressing the ultimate truth not as Substance but as Subject as well." If the generation which heard God spoken of as the One Substance was shocked and revolted by such a characterization of his nature, the reason lay partly in the instinctive feeling that in such a conception self-consciousness was simply submerged, and not preserved. But partly, again, the opposite position, which maintains thinking to be merely subjective thinking, abstract universality as such, is exactly the same bare uniformity, is undifferentiated , unmoved substantiality. And even if, in the third place, thought combines with itself the substance, and conceives immediacy or intuition (Anschauung) as thinking, it is still a question whether this intellectual intuition does not fall back into that inert, abstract simplicity, and exhibit and expound reality itself in an unreal manner. Who are these philosophers of "the One Substance," of the view that takes "thinking as thinking," and of "thinking uniting itself with the being of the substance and comprehends immediacy or intuition as thinking"? The first is undoubtedly Spinoza, and is so identified by both Baillie and Kaufmann. The second, according to Baillie, is Kant and Fichte. Kaufmann abstains from judgment and simply reports that Lasson suggests Kant. For the third, both Baillie and Kaufmann name Schelling. On the basis of the text of the Preface, these are reasonable guesses, but they can only be guesses, for the text offers us no further evidence, and the references are so abbreviated that they cannot, from the text alone, be uniquely determined. For example, how do we decide whether the second philosopher(s) is(are) Kant, or Fichte, or Kant and Fichte, or perhaps the entire Kantian movement in philosophy, perhaps including Schelling as well? Similarly, the last philosopher mentioned is probably not Schelling, as both Baillie and Kaufmaun suggest, but rather Jacobi and the intuitionists, given the stress on "immediacy and intuition." But Sehelling also argued a concept of "intellectual intui1 Referencesto the Preface of the Phenomenology are to the Baillie translation (London: Macmillan , 1931) accompaniedby comparison rcferencs to Waltr Kaufmann, Hgel: Texts and Commentary (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1966). [3991 400 HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY tion," and so the reference to "thinking uniting itself with the being of the substance" might include Schelling as well. But how do we know? If we leave the Phenomenology and turn to the Logic,~ we find that there is a threepart division of the "attitudes of thought to objectivity," in chapters 3, 4 and 5, which is so strikingly parallel to this passage in the Phenomenology that it is impossible to resist the temptation to identify them. The first attitude is the "traditionally metaphysical," "which has no doubts and no sense of the contradiction in thought, or of the hostility of thought against itself" (26). This is "Pre-Kantian metaphysics," and indisputably indudes Spinoza. The second "attitude" (chap. 4) is divided into two parts, "Empiricism," which "abandons the search for truth in thought itself, and goes to fetch it from experience " (37) and "the Critical Philosophy," which, "in common with Empiricism . . . assumes that experience affords the one sole foundation for cognitions" (40). In the last section of the chapter (40), Hegel explicitly argues that Fichte is to be considered with Kant. Fichte may have exaggerated, rather than resolved, the defects of Kant's philosophy , but he "never advanced beyond Kant's conclusion...

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1538-4586
Print ISSN
0022-5053
Pages
pp. 399-400
Launched on MUSE
2008-01-01
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.