Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason is a key element of the system of philosophy which Kant introduced with his Critique of Pure Reason, and a work of major importance in the history of Western religious thought. It represents a great philosopher's attempt to spell out the form and content of a type of religion that would be grounded in moral reason and would meet the needs of ethical life. It includes sharply critical and boldly constructive discussions on topics (...) not often treated by philosophers, including such traditional theological concepts as original sin and the salvation or 'justification' of a sinner, and the idea of the proper role of a church. This volume presents it and three short essays that illuminate it in new translations by Allen Wood and George di Giovanni, with an introduction by Robert Merrihew Adams that locates it in its historical and philosophical context. (shrink)
Born from the combination of two projects--a presentation of the important essays from the Critical Journal of Schelling and Hegel that were still untranslated and an anthology of excerpts from the works of the generation of German thinkers ...
The theologians of the late German Enlightenment saw in Kant's Critique of Pure Reason a new rational defense of their Christian faith. In fact, Kant's critical theory of meaning and moral law totally subverted the spirit of that faith. This challenging new study examines the contribution made by the Critique of Pure Reason to this change of meaning. George di Giovanni stresses the revolutionary character of Kant's critical thought but also reveals how this thought was being held hostage to unwarranted (...) metaphysical assumptions that caused much confusion and rendered the first Critique vulnerable to being reabsorbed into modes of thought typical of Enlightenment popular philosophy. Amongst the striking features of this book are nuanced interpretations of Jacobi and Reinhold, a lucid exposition of Fichte's early thought, and a rare, detailed account of Enlightenment popular philosophy. (shrink)
The World, understood as a system of meaningful relations, is for Hegel the exclusive product of the human mind. In this, Hegel stands together with Kant in direct opposition to the Christian metaphysical tradition, according to which reality reflects God's ideas. For both Kant and Hegel, faith and religion therefore acquire new meaning. Yet, that meaning is just as different for each with respect to the other as it is for both with respect to the Christian tradition. This paper explores (...) these differences, taking Kant's and Hegel's differing attitudes towards evil as the litmus test for differentiating their respective idealism. (shrink)
Despite the radically different interests that motivate Emil Fackenheim’s and Henry Harris’s respective interpretations of Hegel, the two have significant points of commonality. They in fact come the closest precisely at points where they seem to differ most. The need and the possibility of ‘reconciliation’ is the theme that animates both interpretations, and both also agree in their assessment of Hegel’s treatment of ‘evil.’ There are nevertheless crucial differences separating the two, which the essay details. The essay concludes wondering, on (...) the one hand, how seriously Harris recognizes that, in a post-Holocaust world, ‘reconciliation’ calls for existential conditions such as Hegel could never have imagined; and on the other hand, how much Fackenheim would be willing to admit that his immersion into history will necessarily bring violent consequences in train for which there will have to be an accounting. (shrink)
Now that the edition of Fichte's works is complete, and those of Hegel's and Jacobi's practically complete, it is comforting to see that the edition of Reinhold's works, begun in 1983 with a first volume of his correspondence , but subsequently dormant, has finally been resumed in earnest. The two books under review are Reinhold's Letters on Kantian Philosophy that make up the two parts of the second of the twelve volumes now planned for the edition. An editorial board is (...) supervising the project, but general editorial control will fall on Martin Bondeli, who has just produced this second volume. Including the multiple parts of individual volumes, there will be sixteen books altogether, 2019 being the foreseen completion date. This Schwabe publication will also incorporate in some form or other the work already done by Faustino Fabbianelli in editing the Beiträge zur Berichtigung bisheriger Mißverständnisse der Philosophen of 1790 and 1794 . As for Reinhold's correspondence, the first volume of 1983 was followed in 2007 by a second covering the 1788–1790 period, both published by Frommann-Holzboog. This series will proceed independently, but in cooperation with the. (shrink)
This volume is the third in a series of six which, when completed, will make available in less expensive and more practical pocket-book format Fichte’s 1810–1812 Berlin lecture notes, otherwise also available in the now completed Gesamtausgabe. The series was conceived, however, with more than just this practical aim in mind. Since the editors do not present it as a “critical edition,” they can afford to take liberties that were not permitted in the Gesamtausgabe, yet render the text much more (...) accessible to the reader. For instance, the editors regularly complete words and sentences that Fichte leaves abbreviated; make explicit otherwise ambiguous references; and also include in the series the student transcripts .. (shrink)
In this comment on Firestone and Jacobs’s book, In Defense of Kant’s Religion, I take issue with (1) the authors’ strategy in demonstrating that it is possible to positively incorporate religion and theology into Kant’s critical corpus, and (2) their intention to focus on the coherence of Kant’s theory without necessarily recommending it for Christianity. Regarding (1), I argue that in pursuing their strategy the authors ignore the fact that Kant has transposed what appear to be traditional religious doctrines to (...) a completely different level of reflection, in effect turning them into imaginary tropes intended to mask otherwise irreducible contradictions in his view of human agency. As for (2), I claim that the authors’ intention runs the risk of being disingenuous, since Kant presented his religion as the true religion, opposing it to historical Christianity (unless the latter, of course, is re-interpreted according to his own precepts). (shrink)