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The Desire of the Whole in Classical German Philosophy

Gardner, S; (2018) The Desire of the Whole in Classical German Philosophy. In: Emundts,, Dina and Sedgwick, Sally, (eds.) Begehren / Desire. (pp. 233-256). De Gruyter: Berlin, Boston. Green open access

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Abstract

The notion that we are bound to desire the whole – i. e., that we rightfully aspire to exist as complete and undivided entities, Totalitäten – is familiar from Schiller’s Über die ästhetische Erziehung des Menschen. My discussion aims to indicate (i) the logical peculiarity of this desire, (ii) its internal relation to post-Kantian concerns, (iii) the specific argument for its necessity given in Schiller’s Letters, (iv) the arguable limitations of Schiller’s account, (v) the alternative versions of it (and critical views of Schiller) found in Fichte, Schelling and Hegel, and (vi) the platonistic-formalist dimension of this development. Die Idee, dass wir dazu bestimmt sind, das Ganze zu begehren ‒ d. h., dass wir rechtmäßig danach streben, als vollendete und ungeteilte Wesen oder „Totalitäten“ zu existieren ‒ ist uns aus Schillers Über die ästhetische Erziehung des Menschen vertraut. Das Ziel der Diskussion in diesem Beitrag ist, Folgendes zu erläutern: (i) die logische Eigentümlichkeit dieses Begehrens, (ii) seine innere Beziehung zu den Aufgaben der Nachkantianer, (iii) das in Schillers Briefen gelieferte Argument für die Notwendigkeit des Begehrens, (iv) die möglichen Grenzen von Schillers Theorie, (v) die alternativen Ausarbeitungen dieses Arguments (und kritischen Stellungnahmen zu Schiller) bei Fichte, Schelling und Hegel, und (vi) die platonistisch-formalistische Dimension dieser Entwicklung.

Type: Book chapter
Title: The Desire of the Whole in Classical German Philosophy
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1515/9783110579802
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110579802
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10026229
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