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31. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 43 > Issue: 1/2
Recent Dissertations
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32. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 43 > Issue: 1/2
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33. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 43 > Issue: 1/2
HSA 2012 Program
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hegel and analytic philosophy
34. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Kenneth R. Westphal, Analytic Philosophy and the Long Tail of Scientia: Hegel and the Historicity of Philosophy
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Rejection of the philosophical relevance of history of philosophy remains pronounced within contemporary Anglophone analytic philosophy. The two main reasons for this rejection presuppose that strict deduction is both necessary and sufficient for rational justification. However, this justificatory ideal of scientia holds only within strictly formal domains. This is confirmed by a neglected non-sequitur in van Fraassen’s original defence of ‘Constructive Empiricism’. Conversely, strict deduction is insufficient for rational justification in non-formal, substantive domains of inquiry. In nonformal, substantive domains, rational justification is also, in part, ineliminably social and historical, for sound reasons Hegel was the first to articulate.
35. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Paul Redding, Hegel’s Anticipation of the Early History of Analytic Philosophy
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The opening chapters of Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit have for some time been taken as speaking to various concerns central to early analytic philosophy. In particular, Hegel’s diagnosis of the problems of “sense-certainty” has been read as anticipating the problems discovered within attempts like that in early Russell to found knowledge on some immediate “acquaintance” with “sense-data.” Here, utilizing a parallel between “shapes of consciousness” and “shapes of speech,” I extend the idea of such an Hegelian “anticipation” to that of a dialectic running through analytic philosophy in the first half of the twentieth century.
36. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Christopher Yeomans, Hegel and Analytic Philosophy of Action
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A primary fault line in the analytic philosophy of action is the debate between causal/Davidsonian and interpretivist/Anscombian theories of action. The fundamental problem of the former is producing a criterion for distinguishing intentional from non-intentional causal chains; the fundamental problem of the latter is producing an account of the relation between reasons and actions that is represented by the ‘because’ in the claim that the agent acted because she had the reason. It is argued that Hegel’s conception of teleology can be used to develop the interpretivist position by solving both its and the causal theory’s fundamental problems.
37. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Dean Moyar, Rethinking Autonomy in Hegel’s Earliest Writings
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This essay investigates the themes of autonomy and conscience in Hegel’s earliest writings. Though these themes play a large role in Hegel’s mature philosophy, they are largely absent from the writings in his Frankfurt and Jena periods before the publication of the Phenomenology of Spirit. The essay argues that essential elements of the mature position on autonomy and conscience can already be found in the treatments in the early writings of moral motivation, moral conflict, formal freedom, and intersubjectivity.
38. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Robert R. Williams, Hegel’s Concept of The True Infinite
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According to Hegel, the true infinite is the fundamental concept of philosophy. Yet despite this fact, there is absence of consensus concerning its meaning and significance. The true infinite challenges the currently dominant non-metaphysical interpretations of Hegel, as it challenged the dominance of the Kantian framework in its own day, specifically Kant’s attack on theology and his treatment of theology as a postulate of moralit y. Kant admits that the God-postulate has only subjective necessity and validity, and is an expression of moral faith. Hegel both accepts Kant’s approach to the God-question through freedom and practical reason, but he rejects Kant’s philosophy of the postulates as incoherent, burdened with finitude and antithesis. The ought is only the beginning of the transcendence of finitude, but also essentially clings to finitude. This is the spurious infinite. In contrast to the traditional view of abstract transcendence, Hegel shows that the very attempt to separate the infinite from the finite only renders the infinite finite and levels it. The consciousness of limit (finitude) implies a transcendence of limit. The true infinite is an onto-theological principle, a social infinite that overcomes the limits imposed by abstract transcendence and the dualisms imposed by the Kantian frame. It is of vital importance for Hegel’s philosophy of religion, as both a doctrine of divine presence and absolute spirit in its community.
39. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Robert M. Wallace, True Infinity and Hegel’s Rational Mysticism: A Reply to Professor Williams
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Robert Williams objects that my interpretation of Hegel’s philosophical theology makes him an “Enlightenment naturalist.” In response, I explain how my book describes Hegel as decisively criticizing Enlightenment naturalism by showing that the finite and the natural must be sublated in the infinite. Second, I show that Hegel’s apparently paradoxical conception of the relation between humans and God makes sense when it is seen as part of the long tradition of rational mysticism, which includes Plato, Plotinus, Proclus, St. Augustine, and Meister Eckhart.
40. The Owl of Minerva: Volume > 42 > Issue: 1/2
Robert R. Williams, Hegel’s True Infinity As Panentheism: Reply to Robert Wallace
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Hegel’s True Infinite is “well known” but there is little consensus concerning its meaning. The true infinite is introduced in Hegel’s deconstruction of traditional conceptions of quality, determinacy and reality as wholly positive and from which negation, limitation and determinacy are excluded. Everything is other than and unrelated to everything else. These assumptions yield the stubborn category of finitude as an absolute limit, and of God as abstract unknowable Beyond. But Hegel claims that every attempt to separate the infinite from the finite makes the infinite itself finite—the spurious infinite, the “ought.” The true infinite is the negation/correction of the spurious infinite; it reinstates the relations suppressed by the understanding. The true infinite is an ontotheological conception of a social infinite: it is both absolute—in and for itself—and related—being for an other—to wit, an articulated, inclusive whole. It is not an acosmic pantheism like Spinoza’s that defrauds difference and finitude of their due. The true infinite presupposes as its corollary the idealit y of the finite. The latter articulates the ontological status of the finite as sublated in the true infinite, i.e. as a member both distinct from and related to (dependent on) the true infinite. The true infinite is the whole present in its members. The true infinite is neither traditional theism (the assertion of abstract transcendence), nor atheism (the denial of abstracttranscendence) nor pantheism (that eliminates finitude), nor a projection of finitude (Feuerbach). It is best understood as panentheism.