On the limit of spirit: Hegel’s racism revisited

Philosophy and Social Criticism 36 (9):1039-1051 (2010)
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In his speech at the University of Dakar in July 2007, the French president Nicolas Sarkozy referred to Africa as the continent that has not yet fully entered history. This article takes this obvious reference to Hegel as its starting point and examines the current significance of ‘Hegel’s Africa’. Through a close reading of The Philosophy of History and The Phenomenology of Spirit, it shows that Hegel’s remarks on Africa are by no means incidental. They constitute rem(a)inders of a modernity that is based on the construction of Africa as its own limit. The return of Hegel’s Africa, the article concludes, can thus not be restricted to a problem of the new European right. It is part of an understanding of modernity that remains haunted by the specters of racism



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Patricia Purtschert
University of Berne

Citations of this work

Hegel and Colonialism.Alison Stone - 2020 - Hegel Bulletin 41 (2):247-270.
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References found in this work

Hegel and Haiti.Susan Buck-Morss - 2000 - Critical Inquiry 26 (4):821-865.
Hegel und die Fremden.Byung–Chul Han - 2004 - Allgemeine Zeitschrift für Philosophie 29 (3):215-224.

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