Alexandre Kojève (1902-1968) was born in Russia and educated in Berlin. Kojeve gave his influential lectures on Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes from 1933-1939 in Paris, which were collected and edited by the poet Raymond Quesneau as Introduction to the Reading of Hegel (1947). After the Second World War Kojeve […]

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“Let us consider a gold ring. There is a hole and this hole is just as essential to the ring as the gold is; without the gold, the hole (which, moreover, would not exist) would not be a ring, but without the hole, the gold (which would none the less exist) would not be a ring either. But if one has found atoms in the gold, it is not at all necessary to look for them in the hole. And nothing indicates that the gold and the hole are in one and the same manner (of course, what is involved is the hole as ‘hole’ and not the air which is ‘in the hole’). The hole is a nothingness that subsists (as the presence of an absence) thanks to the gold which surrounds it. Likewise, Man who is Action could be a nothingness that ‘nihilates’ in being, thanks to the being which it ‘negates’.” From: Kojève, Alexandre

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Die in dem Buch erkannte Entwicklung zur totalen Integration ist unterbrochen, nicht abgebrochen; sie droht, über Diktaturen und Kriege sich zu vollziehen. Die Prognose des damit verbundenen Umschlags von Aufklärung in Positivismus, den Mythos dessen, was der Fall ist, schließlich die Identität von Intelligenz und Geistfeindschaft hat überwältigend sich bestätigt. Unsere Konzeption der Geschichte wähnt nicht, ihr enthoben zu sein, aber sie jagt nicht positivistisch nach Information. Als Kritik von Philosophie will sie Philosophie nicht preisgeben.

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The following quote is from: Daniel Berthold-Bond, Hegel’s Grand Synthesis: A Study of Being, Thought, and History. New York: Harper, 1993, pp. 81-91. The Dialectical Principle Probably more has been written about Hegel’s theory of dialectic than any other aspect of his philosophy. It has been ridiculed as a “primitive schematization system,” [49] and praised […]

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(From: Theodor Adorno, Negative Dialectics, 1969. End.) The question is whether metaphysics as a knowledge of the absolute is at all possible without the construction of an absolute knowledge – without that idealism which supplied the title for the last chapter of Hegel’s Phenomenology. Is a man who deals with the absolute not necessarily claiming […]

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This excerpt from Kojève, Alexandre: Introduction to the Reading of Hegel. Basic Books, New York, 1969, discusses the question “What is dialectic?” I am quoting from Chapter 1, and from the conclusion. The Dialectic of the Real and the Phenomenological Method in Hegel What is Dialectic, according to Hegel? We can give a first answer […]

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Hier ist die deutsche  Vorrede zur Phänomenologie des Geistes, Hegel’s berühmtes Buch von 1807.  “Eine Erklärung, wie sie einer Schrift in einer Vorrede nach der Gewohnheit vorausgeschickt wird – über den Zweck, den der Verfasser sich in ihr vorgesetzt, sowie über die Veranlassungen und das Verhältnis, worin er sie zu andern frühern oder gleichzeitigen Behandlungen […]

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