What is Platonic Irony?

What is Platonic irony?  When reading Plato’s dialogues philosophers are often keen to highlight irony within his texts.  Irony, however, is not necessarily what we think of it today.  Rather, Platonic irony is carefully constructed and inserted into the text by Plato himself.  Platonic irony is deeply dialectical in the Socratic sense, since Plato’s literary … Continue reading What is Platonic Irony?

Johann Hamann: Philosophy of Language

Johann Hamann is one of the most understudied and unknown philosophers, especially in the English-speaking world.  A figure of tremendous importance to history, who was called the “Magus of the North” and the “brightest star” by Johann Wolfgang Goethe, Hamann came to be an influential father of the Sturm und Drang arts movement in Germany, … Continue reading Johann Hamann: Philosophy of Language

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 on History, III: From Orient to Aristocracy

We left off examining Hegel’s philosophy of history with the Hero, Orient, and religion.  Now we move into the heart of Hegel’s historicism: the movement from the orient to aristocracy.  The movement to aristocratic governance is the next great moment in historical unfolding, but also posed many problems as Hegel makes clear in his commentary … Continue reading Hegel on History, III: From Orient to Aristocracy

Dante’s Inferno, I: The Construction of Hell

Dante’s three part epic poem the Divine Comedy, or Commedia, is one of the most influential and dense works of poetic literature in the Western tradition.  Building off of Homer and Virgil, and influencing the likes of Chaucer, Milton, Blake, and Tennyson, as well as bringing to popular consciousness and form the modern Italian language, … Continue reading Dante’s Inferno, I: The Construction of Hell

Karl Marx: Song of a Sailor at Sea

"Song of a Sailor at Sea": You may frolic and beat and roll Round my boat just as you will, You must carry me to my goal; For you are my subjects still. Blue waves beneath that now, My little brother's there. You dragged him down below, His bones became your fare. I was a … Continue reading Karl Marx: Song of a Sailor at Sea

Friedrich Schelling’s Philosophy of Mythology

In his series of lectures on the philosophy of mythology, published as the Historical Critical Introduction to the Philosophy of Mythology, Friedrich Schelling achieves a paradigmatic revolution in German Romantic and idealistic thought that would be influential for later German philosophy and influential upon the psychologist Carl Jung.  Schelling, a student and pupil of Fichte and … Continue reading Friedrich Schelling’s Philosophy of Mythology