The Divided Individual in the Political Thought of G. W. F. Hegel and Friedrich Nietzsche
Publication Year: 2011
Published by: Penn State University Press
Title Page, Copyright
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I began thinking about a project on the modern individual several years ago as a way to get to the bottom of the disputes between liberalism and its many critics. I found that the claims and counterclaims—about individual rights, the liberal community...
List of Abbreviations
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Within each modern liberal regime, there are considerable disagreements about every manner of policy issue, every step in foreign affairs, every vision of the nation’s future. Yet one feature of modern life is shared by even the bitterest political...
Chapter 1: Three Concepts of Individuality
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Individuality is in many ways the foundational modern concept. Consider by way of illustration the derivative character of individuality in “premodern” societies, which are founded and sustained based on appeals to supraindividual entities or ideals...
Chapter 2: Hegel's Defense of Individuality
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Hegel may seem to be a strange choice as a champion of individuality. He does, after all, liken the state to a “substance” and individuals to its “accidents” (PR 145Z). Leading a proper ethical life, Hegel argues, “consists in fulfilling the duties imposed...
Chapter 3: Hegel on the Ethical Individual
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In the last chapter, we saw that, in contrast to the traditional understanding of Hegel, our Hegel is a defender of a robust form of individualism, both in terms of an individual’s right to follow only those laws he has given himself...
Chapter 4: Hegel on the Modern Political Individual
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Hegel offers a refreshingly unusual defense of individuality on the basis of what fulfills human subjectivity, or rather, what perfects the distinctively human. Neither the whimsical particularisms of an individual nor the ascetic rationalism...
Chapter 5: Nietzsche's Defense of Individuality
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Perhaps the most pervasive theme across Nietzsche’s corpus is the problem and promise of individuality. In Nietzsche, unlike Hegel, one need not read too far before encountering his celebration of the individual and his tremendous fears...
Chapter 6: Nietzsche on the Redemptive Individual
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In the previous chapter, I articulated and defended Nietzsche’s view of individuality, while also bringing out how much Nietzsche’s view shares in common with Hegel’s. Though this self-narrating individual may seem to be a radically solitary...
Chapter 7: Nietzsche on the Antipolitical Individual
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In the previous chapter, we saw that for Nietzsche human beings become individuals through ethical activity, through the redemption of community. The task of this chapter is to investigate the historical and political conditions for the right...
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This book has been an effort to articulate and defend the strand of modern individuality developed by the German philosophers Hegel and Nietzsche. This task is important for a number of reasons. First, Western liberalism is at bottom justified...
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Page Count: 296
Publication Year: 2011