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The Impact of Idealism
The Legacy of Post-Kantian German Thought

Volume 2. Historical, Social and Political Thought


  • Editor: John Walker, Birkbeck College, University of London
John Walker, Onora O'Neill, William Rasch, Chris Thornhill, Douglas Moggach, Steffen Wagner, Stephan Nachtsheim, David Midgley, Fred Rush, Brian O'Connor, Andreas Grossmann, Irene Stolzi, Sabine Doyé, Marion Heinz, Liz Disley, Jörn Rüsen
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  • Date Published: November 2013
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107039834

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About the Authors
  • The first study of its kind, The Impact of Idealism assesses the impact of classical German philosophy on science, religion and culture. This second volume explores German Idealism's impact on the historical, social and political thought of the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Each essay focuses on an idea or concept from the high point of German philosophy around 1800, tracing out its influence on the intervening period and its importance for contemporary discussions. New light is shed on key developments of Idealist thought, such as Marxism, Critical Theory and feminism, and previously unexamined areas of Idealism's influence are discussed for the first time. This unique, interdisciplinary collection traces the impact of Kant, Hegel, Schelling, Fichte and others in Britain, Europe, North America and beyond. Its insights represent vital contributions to their respective fields, as well as to our understanding of German Idealism itself.

    • Discusses major thinkers, including Kant, Hegel and Marx, to show their impact upon key concepts and movements in modern and contemporary thought
    • Explores how Idealism has shaped modern political and social thought, from the idea of a constitution to theories of love and social ontology
    • Gives accounts of Idealism's impact on European politics and shows how it has influenced international relations
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This unprecedented collection by scholars from the UK, US, and Europe chronicles the rise of German Idealism and reveals its enduring influence on virtually every area of modern thought and action from philosophy to science, society and politics, the practice, criticism, and theory of the arts, and religion.' Paul Guyer, University of Pennsylvania

    'The Impact of Idealism is a monumental achievement, a bold attempt to fathom the legacy of German idealism in every sphere of culture. The extent and the depth of the enterprise, in its four volumes, is staggering. Nothing like it has been done before, and it is unlikely that anything like it will ever be attempted again. It is the product of an impressive array of scholars, virtually everyone who is anyone in the field. It is sure to be the standard work on the subject. Anyone whose work touches on German idealism, which is almost all of us, will need to read it.' Frederick Beiser, Syracuse University

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2013
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107039834
    • length: 397 pages
    • dimensions: 252 x 182 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.95kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: idealism in historical, social and political thought John Walker
    1. From transcendental idealism to political realism Onora O'Neill
    2. The public of the intellectuals – from Kant to Lyotard William Rasch
    3. Idealism and the idea of a constitution Chris Thornhill
    4. German Idealism and Marx Douglas Moggach
    5. Ethos, nature and education in Johann Erich von Berger and Friedrich Adolf Trendelenburg Steffen Wagner
    6. The concept of philosophy of culture in neo-Kantianism Stephan Nachtsheim
    7. After materialism. Reflections of idealism in Lebensphilosophie: Dilthey, Bergson and Simmel David Midgley
    8. 'Rationalisation', 'reification', 'instrumental reason' Fred Rush
    9. Freedom within nature: Adorno on the idea of reason's autonomy Brian O'Connor
    10. German neo-Hegelianism and the plea for another Hegel Andreas Grossmann
    11. Idealism and the fascist corporative state Irene Stolzi
    12. Love and recognition in Fichte, Hegel, and Simone de Beauvoir Sabine Doyé and Marion Heinz
    13. Giving an account of oneself amongst others: Hegel, Judith Butler and social ontology Liz Disley
    14. Idealism in the German tradition of meta-history Jörn Rüsen.

  • Editor

    John Walker, Birkbeck College, University of London
    John Walker is Senior Lecturer in German in the Department of European Cultures and Languages at Birkbeck, University of London.

    General Editors

    Nicholas Boyle, University of Cambridge
    Nicholas Boyle is Schröder Professor of German Emeritus at the University of Cambridge, and a Fellow and former President of Magdalene College.

    Liz Disley, University of Cambridge
    Liz Disley is a Research Associate in the Department of German and Dutch at the University of Cambridge.


    John Walker, Onora O'Neill, William Rasch, Chris Thornhill, Douglas Moggach, Steffen Wagner, Stephan Nachtsheim, David Midgley, Fred Rush, Brian O'Connor, Andreas Grossmann, Irene Stolzi, Sabine Doyé, Marion Heinz, Liz Disley, Jörn Rüsen

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