I offer a new reconstruction of Hegel’s criticism of Kant’s idealism. Kant held that we impose categorial form on experience, while sensation provides its matter. Hegel argues that the matter we receive cannot guide our imposition of form on it. Contra recent interpretations, Hegel’s argument does not depend on a conceptualist account of perception or a view of the categories as empirically conditioned. His objection is that given Kant’s dualistic metaphysics, the categories cannot have material conditions for correct application. This (...) leads to subjectivism in the content of experience: the subject is given an implausibly strong role in determining what is the case. Hegel’s own absolute idealism solves this problem. (shrink)
[Attached PDF is the Arabic translation, the hyperlink takes you to the original English version] In this paper I argue that the emphasis, which was placed by the PAIGC’s leadership, and specifically by Amílcar Cabral, on the importance of advancing women’s rights and women’s liberation should be understood as being a consequence of Cabral’s modernist philosophical orientation. Moreover, I argue that women played an essential part in the struggle for liberation from Portuguese colonialism. In the first section, I characterize Cabral’s (...) modernist philosophical orientation and the way it influenced his views on the necessity of women’s liberation. I emphasize the philosophical commitment to autonomy as a guiding normative principle. In the second section, I argue that women played a key role in pressuring the PAIGC to integrate them into its structure, i.e., they were active agents and not just passive subjects waiting for somebody to “liberate them.” In the third and concluding section, I describe the limits of the PAIGC’s commitment to women’s liberation, and I discuss why some members of the party’s leadership (e.g., Luis Cabral) disagreed with Amílcar Cabral regarding the importance of women’s liberation. This paper thus approaches the question of feminist anti-colonial imaginaries both from the perspective of the hopes which attended a partially feminist-inflected African liberation struggle, as well the betrayal of these hopes by men in leadership positions. Those leaders never took seriously the idea that the liberation of women was a necessary condition for the creation of a social environment which would allow for the full actualization of the capacities of men and women in Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde. (shrink)
This article looks at the role of Hellenistic thought in the historical narratives of Martin Heidegger and Hannah Arendt. To a certain extent, both see—with G. W. F. Hegel, J. G. Droysen, and Eduard Zeller—Hellenistic and Roman philosophy as a “modernity in antiquity,” but with important differences. Heidegger is generally dismissive of Hellenistic thought and comes to see it as a decisive historical turning point at which a protomodern element of subjective willing and domination is injected into the classical heritage (...) of Plato and Aristotle. Arendt, likewise, credits Stoic philosophy with the discovery of the will as an active faculty constituting a realm of subjective freedom and autonomy. While she considers Hellenistic philosophy as essentially apolitical and world-alienated—in contrast to the inherently political and practical Roman culture—it nonetheless holds for her an important but unexploited ethical and political potential. (shrink)
Entgegen der Tendenz, Heiner Müller als Tragiker und seine Hamletmaschine als Tragödie zu deuten, will ich diese im Folgenden als eine spezifische Form von Komödie lesen – eine Komödie, die dabei gleichzeitig eine bestimmte Gegenwart der Tragödie in sich enthält.
This contribution investigates the intimate relation and the tension between legal and literary procedures of personification and subjectivation. In order to do so, the contribution turns to Kafka’s The Trial and examines the proximity of the juridical procedure depicted in the novel, intending to establish Josef K. as a subject, to the narrative procedures of the novel itself that aims at bringing forth an accountable protagonist. The intimate relation of the legal procedures described in the novel and the narrative ones (...) of the novel itself is rooted in a shared historical heritage that impacts both. I argue that the fundamental configuration of advocacy in the classical rhetorical procedure: speaking for someone, against someone, in front of an other, lies at the basis of both legal and literary procedures. Against this common rhetorical background I investigate developments in legal procedures and the formation of the modern novel in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. Both developments occlude the rhetorical mechanisms of speaking-for and speaking against and turn the rhetorical procedures of personification into mechanisms of subjectivation. Kafka’s Proceß reflects these developments, yet does not affirm this transformation and ultimately does not result in a guilty subject and a ‘believable’ character. Rather, the novel embodies a gesture of resistance against certain modes of subjectivation that seem to be prevalent both in modern law and in the novel of formation. (shrink)
The Hegelian insight that subjectivity depends on recognition has been taken up by two competing traditions: Post-Hegelian theories (Honneth, Brandom) take recognition to be a precondition for a critical stance of subjects towards society. In contrast, theories of subjection (Althusser, Butler) take the dependency of subjects on subordinating relations of recognition as undermining their capacity for critique. I argue that this worry has not been taken seriously enough by the post-Hegelian tradition, especially by its model of immanent critique. However, theories (...) of subjection ignore that the very structure of recognitive relations supports critical capacities that can never be fully effaced by ideology. (shrink)
In the modern Continental tradition the word "subjectivity" is used to denote all that refers to a subject, its psychological-physical integrity represented by its mind, all that determines the unique mentality, mental state, and reactions of this subject. Subjectivity in this perspective has become on the Continent the central principle of philosophy.Modern Continental philosophy not only maintains the value of the subject and awakens an interest in genuine subjectivity. It evolves from the subject and subjective self-consciousness as Jundamento inconcusso. Thus (...) modern Continental philosophy should be understood and discussed as a philosophy of subjectivity. This paper deals, on the one hand, with the philosophical-historical reconstruction of modern philosophy of subjectivity from Descartes to Hegel, and, on the other hand, with an analysis and evaluation of Hegel's systematic approach to subjectivity in terms of philosophical tradition, especially from the viewpoint of the realization of the idealistic program of selfconsciousness represented by German idealists.Focusing on the major lines of development of the theory of subjectivity in Continental philosophy from Descartes to Hegel, 1(1) discuss the quandaries of early modern philosophers concerning subject and subjectivity and their attempts to resolve these quandaries by developing the fundamentally new (in contrast to previous tradition) understanding of subjectivity; (2) show that the issue of subjectivity was the basic topic of transcendental idealism; and (3) introduce Hegel's approach to subjectivity and briefly define its novel character. (shrink)