Using a variet y of classical sources, we identify the Owl of Minerva as the European Little Owl (Athene noctua) and describe its habits. Our not-altogether- serious conclusion is that Hegel was wrong to state that the Owl of Minerva begins its flight only at the falling of the dusk.
If the commands of authority are peremptory and content-independent directives, it is a great puzzle why any rational autonomous agent should accept them as morally binding, as Robert Paul Wolff and others have argued. I analyse the peremptory and content-independent quality of authoritative directives and argue that all earthly authorities operate within a specified domain. I investigate three candidates for the role of universally applicable boundary conditions–morality, harm to self, and absurdity. I conclude that commands are authoritative only when intra (...) vires, i.e. issued within the proper domain of the authority. Wolff's challenge is not met, hut it is shown to be less forbidding. (shrink)
I attempt to show that it is notphilosophically incompetent to ground politicalobligation in feelings of gratitude. But theargument needs to be stated carefully.Gratitude must be distinguished fromreciprocity. It applies only to good governmentwhich provides benefits to citizens for whichthey ought to feel grateful. It applies only tocitizens who accept that their feelings ofgratitude are properly demonstrated by anacceptance on their part of the duties ofcitizenship. It does not apply to citizenswhose benefits are purchased at the expense ofthe unjust treatment of (...) fellow citizens. (shrink)
Hegel's philosophy is essential to the history of ideas and to the development of philosophy and thought ever since. His Philosophy of Right is one of the great works in political philosophy and its importance to contemporary philosophy has been ongoing. It offers very important contributions to topics of great interest in political philosophy from discussions of persons and rights, property, punishment, moral psychology, civil society, freedom and war. Most significant is the work's relation to Marxist thought and its major (...) critique of Kant. Dudley Knowles provides the most accessible introduction to this monumental work. He reviews Hegel's life and the background to the work and carefully explains and discusses the key concepts of Hegel's thought. (shrink)