The Owl of Minerva

Volume 48, Issue 1/2, 2016/2017

Gregory Moss
Pages 141-166

Reading German Idealism
Constructivism and Its Discontents

Rockmore’s book German Idealism as Constructivism is an ambitious attempt to show that German Idealism is a tradition characterized by the project of perfecting constructivism. On the one hand, Rockmore offers good evidence that this is the case, and it seems indisputable that the German Idealists are preoccupied with this issue. In addition, the text offers deep insights and is particularly strong as concerns the relation of the various Idealists to natural science and the history of science. On the other hand, there is also good evidence that casts some doubt on Rockmore’s thesis. German Idealism as Constructivism may not close the book on this issue, but it certainly contributes to the conversation, and should be taken seriously by any good student of the tradition.

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