Simone de Beauvoir: The Second Sex

Simone de Beauvoir stands alongside Jean Paul Sartre and Albert Camus as the trinity of French existentialist writers that most people will encounter in their dealings with modern 20th century existentialism after Heidegger.  Influenced by philosophers like Augustine, Hegel, Marx, and Heidegger, the French existentialists took their intellectual forebears and turned them in new directions.  … Continue reading Simone de Beauvoir: The Second Sex

Hegel’s Phenomenology: Preface, II (24-37)

Sections 24-37 of Hegel’s Phenomenology contain the his system of science (knowledge) or philosophy.  Having laid out the groundworks of what he is dealing with, namely how do we avoid nihilism and come to actual knowing which is the embodiment of objective substance within the subjective self (a form of transcendental phenomenology), Hegel moves into … Continue reading Hegel’s Phenomenology: Preface, II (24-37)

Hegel’s Phenomenology: Preface, I (1-23)

Georg W.F. Hegel stands alongside the likes of Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Francis Bacon and Rene Descartes as one of the most consequential philosophers who ever lived. Nineteenth century philosopher, especially nineteenth century continental (non-British) philosophy is largely indebted to him (though he, in turn, is indebted to Plato, Plotinus, and Augustine).  The Phenomenology of Spirit … Continue reading Hegel’s Phenomenology: Preface, I (1-23)

Reading Augustine’s City of God: The Two Cities

Augustine’s City of God is one of the great works of Western literature: philosophy, cultural criticism, theology, and development of Christian doctrines.  At 22 books, and over 1,000 pages (most translations), the City of God is not light reading but is generally considered one of the most masterful works ever produced in the Western philosophical … Continue reading Reading Augustine’s City of God: The Two Cities

Carl Schmitt: On Human Nature

“[F]or it is a fact that the entire life of a human being is a struggle and every human being symbolically a combatant. The friend, enemy, and combat concepts receive their real meaning precisely because they refer to the real possibility of physical killing. War follows from enmity. War is the existential negation of the … Continue reading Carl Schmitt: On Human Nature

Dante’s Inferno, II: Dante and Virgil’s Relationship

In continuing our examination of some of the themes of Dante’s Inferno, we now turn to examine the transformative relationship between Virgil and Dante within the first part of the Divine Comedy.  The theme of guide and relationship runs throughout the Divine Comedy.  Virgil is Dante’s guide through Hell and Purgatory.  Beatrice takes over for … Continue reading Dante’s Inferno, II: Dante and Virgil’s Relationship

Hegel’s Dialectic and Sublation

Hegel’s philosophy is generally considered to be underpinned by the dialectic.  Hegel is not the first philosopher to present the dialectic; dialectic is found in Greek and Christian philosophy – and since Hegel is largely drawing from Greek and Christian philosophy it shouldn’t be a surprise he’s in the dialectical camp.  What Hegel did do … Continue reading Hegel’s Dialectic and Sublation