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Idealism, scientia intuitiva, and scientific philosophy.

"CONSIDERED OBJECTIVELY, there can be only one human reason, there ... can be only one true system of philosophy from principles, in however many different and even conflicting ways one has philosophized about one and the same proposition"--so declares Kant in the Vorrede to the "Doctrine of Right." (1) Kant makes this observation in the process of framing a striking claim: "prior to the development of critical philosophy there had been no philosophy at all." (2) Eckart Forster adduces this claim as a point of departure for undertaking "to grasp and understand the single thought" that orients his ambitious new study, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy: A Systematic Reconstruction. (3) It is thus with reference to Kant's pronouncement that Forster propounds his book's lead thought, or at least the first part of it: "philosophy begins in 1781 and ends in 1806," in the sense that over those twenty-five years "philosophy became a science, thereby also arriving at knowledge of itself." (4) Forster sets himself the task of elucidating the "internal dynamic" of the "fundamental idea" that informs the philosophical-historical thesis to which he keys his investigation. (5) The fundamental idea in question is the classic speculative problematic of objective knowledge, which in the Kantian context of Forster's study takes the form of the issue of how it is that we know (discursively, intuitively) "the supersensible substrate of appearances." Beyond simply anatomizing this issue, however, the author engages "to reproduce its immanent development," systematically "reconstructing" it through interlinked analyses of seminal writings of Kant, Fichte, Schelling, Goethe, and Hegel. (6)

Forster divides the body of his exposition into two parts, each consisting of seven chapters. His detailed discussions of Kant (Part I) and of Fichte, Schelling, Goethe, and Hegel (all four in Part II) are exceptionally lucid and they uniformly adhere to the development of the book's defining theme. A thirteen page prologue, titled "A Beginning of Philosophy," and a briefer epilogue, "An End of Philosophy," frame the body of the study. The former systematically introduces F6rster's extended treatment of Kant. The epilogue helpfully provides a synoptic review of each phase of Forster's penetrating exposition. It also features a trenchant defense of the often summarily rejected transitions in Hegel's "science of the experience of consciousness" (the culminating theme of Part II), a defense, by extension, of "the introduction to the standpoint of science." (7) The latter marks the putative "end" of philosophy. (8)

Kant's statement about the beginning of philosophy, on the other hand, if isolated from its context in the paragraph in which Kant placed it, (9) would hardly pass muster with any serious student of Plato or Aristotle, or of Heidegger, Wittgenstein or, more recently, Lorenz Puntel. The remark of Kant that appears at the head of the present essay accompanies his historical pronouncement in the same paragraph, and it suggests that without due qualification one can hardly understand what at first sight must seem a presumptuous claim about the inauguration of philosophy with transcendental idealism. Indeed, and as F6rster notes, Kant himself acknowledges the intellectual conceit that certain readers might find in the declaration. Two of the three times that it appears in the paragraph, Kant sets off the statement in quotes (not reproduced in the standard, Gregor translation). He thereby tacitly indicates a defining qualification, one that goes unremarked by Forster. Kant spells out this qualification at the end the paragraph: "If ... the critical philosophy calls itself a philosophy before which there had been no philosophy at all, it does no more than has been done, will be done, and indeed must be done by anyone who draws up a philosophy on his own plan." (10)

The first half of Forster's book centers mainly on Kant's plan critically to think through the possibility of metaphysics. Forster argues that what establishes transcendental idealism as the "beginning" of philosophy are (1) the fact that it undertakes to unify the "legislations" of theoretical and practical reason "with each other and with a nature that agrees with them," and (2) the way that transcendental idealism undertakes this effort at systematic unification. (11) Forster's discussion of the first Critique concentrates on what he calls the "metaphysical deduction" (for what Kant terms, "metaphysical exposition"), the completeness proof, and the transcendental deduction. Next, he assesses in detail Kant's notorious shift in speculative emphasis from a priori reference (1781) to the possibility of synthetic judgments a priori (from 1783 on). At least since Kuno Fischer, (12) leading expositors of transcendental idealism have viewed this development as due in large part to Kant's reaction to published criticism by Christian Garve and F. H. Jacobi. Forster contends that Christian Garve's 1782 review, in particular, has an "importance ... for the further development of Kant's philosophy [that] cannot be overestimated," (13) since it evidently "made Kant realize" that "two books would be necessary before he would be able to return to metaphysics." (14) These books would have to articulate propaedeutics for practical reason and for the metaphysics of natural science. The former, Groundwork (1785), would be an "investigation into the possibility of morality"; the latter, Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science (1786), "an investigation into the possibility of a priori cognition of objects." (15)

What's more, the very existence of the third Critique, F6rster asserts, "is due solely to Kant's reorientation of transcendental philosophy, undertaken in response" to Garve. (16) Only by tracing how Kant worked his way through to this reorientation do we reach, says F6rster, "the standpoint from which it first becomes possible truly to understand Kant's ... remark (which is also my [Forster's] starting point) that prior to critical philosophy there had been no philosophy at all." (17)

Consistent with the author's focus upon this evolving character and the limits of the Kantian speculative project, the discussion of the third Critique centers on Kant's effort to establish "whether the third 'faculty of the mind,' the feeling of pleasure and displeasure, was perhaps also grounded" (18) in synthetic judgments a priori of some sort. It is in this connection, specifically with reference to those famed sections 76 and 77, (19) that F6rster identifies the powers of supersensible intuition as the cardinal component of that "immanent development" which F6rster makes it his principal business to render explicit and, indeed, to "reproduce." (20) The core issue of this development is "the possibility of a non-discursive [intuitive] understanding." (21) Kant finds it necessary to posit an understanding of this kind in order to account for how we are able "to grasp that the concept of natural purpose is conditioned by the discursivity of our understanding." (22) Kant sees this as similar to a key move in the Critique of Pure Reason, where "we needed merely to contemplate the possibility of a non-sensible intuition in order to be able to conceive sensible objects as appearances and thus resolve the antinomy of theoretical reason." (23) To the bewilderment of many, Kant never wavered from his position that the "link between the sensible and the supersensible is fundamentally beyond human cognition." (24)

Forster declares that the powers of supersensible intuition which Kant denied of the human mind assume, in Kant's most influential reflections upon them (sections 76 and 77 of the third Critique), two fundamentally different forms: "intellectual intuition for which possibility (thinking) and actuality (being) coincide" and "an intuitive understanding which goes from the intuition of the whole to its parts and thus perceives no contingency in the way the parts are assembled into a whole." (25) As Forster makes clear, this is a highly salient distinction, one that he professes himself to be the first reader of Kant to appreciate: "Previous Kant scholarship has failed to recognize that these [intellectual intuition and intuitive understanding] are in fact two distinct faculties.... Just as little as discursive understanding and sensible intuition are identical, neither [sic] are their alternatives: intellectual intuition and intuitive understanding." (26)

Ernst Cassirer, for one, certainly didn't fail to recognize this distinction. Moreover, Cassirer's Kant biography--the only works of Cassirer that appear in Forster's bibliography are three short studies relating to Goethe--provides a masterly review of the philosophical history of the idea of intuitive understanding, from the notion's origination in Plotinus to its transformed sense in Spinoza (Forster's locus classicus). (27) In fact, Cassirer finds that "the whole development of the modern speculative systems in general can be traced in the progressive transformation this idea [intuitive understanding] undergoes in modern thought." (28) Relative to Cassirer's insight, Forster's entire exposition is a systematic effort to establish one version of this development as it runs beyond Kant through Fichte's "subjective" intellectual intuition (in the Wissenschaftslehre), (29) Schelling's "objective" intellectual intuition (in the Naturphilosophie), (30) Goethe's methodological adaptation of Spinozist scientia intuitiva (in the Theory of Color and the Metamorphosis of Plants), (31) and Hegel's "transcendental intuition." (32) The latter is a shape of spirit wherein "what were formerly opposites" are "now identical": having been aufgehoben as opposed terms, they have become an "absolute identity," which amounts to "the identity of the ideal and the real." (33) This onto-epistemological culmination or end of philosophy is the point at which, in Hegel's judgment, knowledge is possible--most significantly knowledge of what Kant identified as "the supersensible substrate of appearances." (34)

Goethe's influence on Hegel plays large in the climactic phase of Forster's argument. Consequently, Forster takes pains to document Goethe's interaction with Hegel between the time Schelling left Jena for Wurzburg, in 1803, and the period, in 1805 and 1806, when Hegel worked out his "Science of the Experience of Consciousness," what Forster calls Hegel's "voyages of discovery." (35) Laying particular stress on the way that Goethe conceptualized transitions as it factors in Hegel's mature philosophy, Forster details how Goethe's influence in this particular proved formative as Hegel thought his way through to the System that made its debut in the Phenomenology. Moreover, the notion plays a pivotal role in F6rster's defense of Hegel's project. "Hegel," he contends, "is not concerned in the Phenomenology with 'historical shapes.'" (36) Since Hegel's day, those shapes of spirit have come under attack as arising from argumentation "lacking in necessity" and hence as replaceable by "alternatives." (37) Forster argues that what Hegel is actually interested in, however, are "the transitions between" those Gestalten, which is to say, "the 'method of the passing over of one form into another and the emergence of one form out of the other.'" (38)

The second half of the "single thought" that frames Forster's inquiry, that philosophy "ends in 1806," originates with Hegel, who by tracing the shapes of consciousness through to the standpoint of Science took himself to have demonstrated and realized "the actuality of the (absolute) idea." (39) Forster accounts Hegel's dramatic announcement on this score both speculatively and historically seminal: "This is the standpoint of the present time, and the series of shapes of spirit has for now reached its end.--Herewith, this history of philosophy comes to an end. Hereafter our standpoint will be the cognition of the idea" (40) Hegel marks an "end" of philosophy by having "sublated the subject-object dichotomy that previously constituted it." (41)

Forster views Hegel's overall philosophy as "a closed system," and on that count a failure. Nonetheless, and against what he says are "the majority" of Hegel's readers, Forster ably defends as "in principle correct" Hegel's penetrating "description of the path of philosophical consciousness to the standpoint of science." (42) Hegel thereby accomplishes something decisive in Forster's view: a "philosophical justification for scientia intuitiva." (43) What Hegel thus justifies is, according to Forster, a "form of cognition that Spinoza had demanded without being able to formulate it in methodologically adequate terms, and whose methodology Goethe was the first to work out, yet without being able to provide philosophical justification." (44) Cassirer might have found this formulation somewhat facile. With his synoptic grasp of the classical, medieval, and modern evolution of the "form of cognition" in question here, Cassirer saw Goethe as operating with an intuitive knowing of a different kind than Spinoza's. It was from the standpoint of his break with Linnaean botany (something Forster is careful to document (45)), that Goethe, as Cassirer explains,
   developed his ideal of knowledge, scientia intuitiva or intuitive
   knowing, invoking Spinoza, whose fundamental ideas, of course,
   underwent a characteristic change at his hands, for Goethe
   transformed the metaphysical intuition of Spinoza into an empirical
   intuition. [Von hier aus bildete er sich jenes Erkenntnisideal der
   "scientia intuitiva", fur das er sich auf Spinoza berief, dessen
   Grundgedanken hierbei freilich eine charakteristische Veranderung
   erfuhren. Denn Goethe verwandelt die metaphysische Intuition
   Spinozas in eine empirische Intuition.] ... [Goethe] discovered a
   form of conception of his own, appropriate to his way of observing
   nature and created his own theory of method, which put biology as a
   science on a new foundation. (46)


At all events, Goethe had set out to conceptualize and "work out a methodology of the finite intuitive understanding" in a way that was to make, says Forster, "discursive and intuitive thinking compatible." (47) Goethe determined that the methodological correlate of this move to conceive intuiting as "becoming a thinking" involves apprehending all at once, and as the defining "central thread," the transitions between parts (or phenomena) of any object under investigation. The goal is to perceive the parts as ingredient in "the ideal whole to which the sensible parts owe their existence and their specific character." (48) It was Hegel, on F6rster's telling, who provided the philosophical justification of this "form of cognition" by applying Goethe's methodology of scientia intuitiva "to philosophy itself in order to achieve philosophical knowledge of the supersensible." (49) Forster concludes that in this respect Hegel established the grounds for "another kind of philosophical science," one that is "fundamentally open to the future," unlike Hegel's own (on F6rster's interpretation). (50)

Forster's way forward for scientific philosophy is a program of scientia intuitiva that complements discursive thought, even as it transcends it. Insofar as metaphysics thus conceived would constitute the "scientific cognition of the supersensible," its task would be "to investigate the internal connection among the ideas that are manifest in the Urphanomene" disclosed by the sciences, and to "generate a systematic presentation" of those ideas. (51) Such is Forster's vision of a forward-looking scientific philosophy dedicated to addressing the Kantian problematic of establishing how knowledge relates to its ground in "supersensible reality." Taking his cue from Goethe, Forster thus finds the "starting point" for genuine philosophical advance in what Goethe called the "empirical summit," however provisional, from which the sciences understand (and define) an Urphanomen at any given historical moment. (52) Forster's proposal, then, is that the philosopher should, as Goethe put it, take "from the hand of the physicist a final [empirical] result that in his own becomes a starting point." (53) Hegel would likely have viewed such a procedure as Reinholdian and censured it as "a hypothetical and problematic kind of philosophizing" that boils down to "analysis of an empirical foundation or provisional assumption that has been put into a definition. " (54)

This is not to say that Hegel wouldn't credit the truth of the passage from Goethe that Forster adduces. The concluding sentences of the Remark appended to section 16 of the Encyclopedia could apply directly to Goethe: it may be, Hegel observes,
   that only the form of the scientific presentation is
   empirical, but a meaningful intuition has ordered what is otherwise
   mere appearance in a way that it accords with the inner sequence of
   the concept [Begriff]. It is characteristic of such an empirical
   presentation that, due to the opposition and manifoldness of the
   juxtaposed phenomena [Erscheinungen] the extraneous, contingent
   circumstances of their conditions sublate themselves, so that the
   Universal then comes before the mind.--In this way, a sensible
   [sinnige] experimental physics, or history, etc., will present the
   rational science of nature and of human affairs in an external
   image that mirrors the concept [Begriff]. (55)


One of the tasks of scientific philosophy moving forward would be to determine vis-a-vis Urphanomene which synoptic accounts coming down to us from the "empirical summit" of scientific research, (56) which comprehensive scientific presentations passed on by the scientist, are in truth an "external image that mirrors the concept" and as such advance the rational science of nature and human affairs. The question for Forster would be whether recourse to Hegelian "transcendental intuition" (57) in determining the Conceptual truth of any given account constitutes a prospective--a genuinely speculative--exercise of scientific philosophy, or one that is merely backward-looking.

As a whole, Forster's reflective scrutiny of primary works is distinguished by its precision and by a synoptic mastery of the development of the philosophical doctrine that he traces through them. This goes for all five of the major figures whom he discusses at length. (58) That said, and as the author anticipates in the prologue, the book is not without its controversial points. Besides those remarked above, three others call for mention here; these concern Hegel, Maimon, and Forster's employment of "historical excurses." Lastly, a word needs to be said about the Harvard Press's copy editing and the quality of the translation.

A general question arises as Forster moves past Hegel's end-of-philosophy statement to propose a new way forward: Is the ultimate pattern of Hegel's philosophical science "a system of what is present and past" only? (59) Forster attempts to substantiate his conclusion by citing a simile from a Zusatz at the end of the First Part ("Science of Logic") of the 1830 Encyclopedia. Hegel employs the imagery figuratively to depict the Absolute Idea, which he likens to "an old man who utters the same religious tenets as the child, but for whom they are invested with the meaning of his whole life." (60) Forster interprets this as indicating a focus on the past: "the lived life the old man looks back upon." (61) The simile hardly depicts the act of looking backward, however, or even a preoccupation with the present. Religious tenets are uttered prospectively, and the image reflects Hegel's insistence that the dialectical "return to the beginning is an advance," of spirit, beyond the childish articulation that manifests merely external form. (62) The old man utters religious tenets that, by contrast with the child's contentless verbiage, have as the very "soul and concept" of their content the meaning, the truth of "his whole life" (transcending past and present). Hegel would repudiate the suggestion that what he imagistically depicts is a philosophical science that "can only shed proper light on what already exists." (63) Indeed the simile betokens the advance to what Hegel described as "the absolute freedom of the Idea" which, "in the absolute truth of itself," is nothing less than Providence intuited in "the moment of its particularity." (64) This is Hegel's version of the absolute truth as Deus sive Natura, at least at the end of the First Part of the Encyclopedia, from which Forster drew this simile for his proof text.

As Forster indicates in his preface, the study's preponderantly speculative character dictated the omission of many names that appear in works of "popular" philosophical history. While this is well and good, the present reader found it puzzling that the author could see fit to include a two-page "Historical Excursus" (65) detailing Franz von Baader's influence on Schelling while offering not a single word about Salomon Maimon's considerably more significant influence on Fichte. It is no secret that Maimon's incisive analysis and criticism of Kant had a formative impact on Fichte's thinking. Forster's core purpose, which he underscores at the outset, is, again, to trace and reproduce the "immanent development" of the idea that underlies the theme that philosophy begins in 1781 and ends in 1806. (66) As I have noted, this idea is largely concerned with the problematic of intuitive knowing. On that count, it would seem odd to omit any mention of the philosopher whose reading of Kant on "intellectual intuition" led him, as Frederick Beiser has argued, to postulate that we should construe the intellectus archetypus as a regulative ideal. (67) Far from being an ancillary matter that Forster could properly ignore, this suggestion is of considerable philosophical and historical relevance to the "immanent development" of the "idea" that he makes it his principal business to delineate and reproduce. Maimon's proposal constitutes an intermediate position between Kant and Fichte, one that had been adumbrated by Spinoza (a key source for Maimon). It is one that, as Forster remarks, Goethe enthusiastically adopted (no doubt from Spinoza) with the intent thereby of pursuing "the phenomena all the way" to their Urphanomene. (68)

Given that Forster's "chief aim" is expressly speculative, he is anxious to distance his work from "the popular historical genre 'From Kant to Hegel." (69) Hence he decides "to forgo discussion of the relevant secondary literature." (70) (Anglophone readers will note the absence of any reference to the work, for example, of Frederick Beiser. (71)) Forster declares in his preface that he has "resolved to avoid the opportunities for digression as far as possible." (72) This is a curious assertion considering that thirteen of the book's fourteen chapters feature a "Historical Excursus." Most of these digressions run for several pages, and some are not all that digressive but rather integral to the main argument of the chapter, as the author himself occasionally suggests. Indeed, in two instances Forster distinguishes such so-called "excurses" as numbered sections of the chapters in which they appear. (73) This is symptomatic of the uneasy tension throughout the book between sometimes inextricably interlinked speculative and historical themes that the author strives to keep distinct over the course of his exposition.

The quality of the text as such is somewhat disappointing, reflecting Harvard Press copy editing that gave a pass to various grammatical, stylistic, and other errors and inelegancies which do not mar the original German edition published in 2011. Also, an unaccountable shift in usage occurs in the book's concluding chapter, where the American style of end-punctuation for quotes gets replaced by the British style, something carried over into the bibliography but not in the Translator's Note, which precedes it. Further, the sectioning within chapters exhibits marked inconsistencies: Arabic numerals identify each section within the chapters of Part I, whereas Roman numerals serve that purpose in Part II. Some sections have titles (italicized in Part II, not in Part I) and some don't. Another indication of editorial inattention to detail is that for a key illustration in Forster's discussion of Goethe's Theory of Colors the Harvard edition substitutes for a colored figure (which appears in the original German version), a variously shaded, circular black-and-white image absurdly labeled Red, Blue-red, Blue, Green, Yellow, and Yellow-red. This figure is supposed to enable the reader to appreciate an aesthetically true visual perception of Goethe's holistic notion of how "two opposed colors which, taken together, make up" a "solicited complementary color." (74)

Regarding the translation, Forster would have done well to have taken on the task himself. An Oxford PhD and co-translator of the Opus postumum for Cambridge, his own English in Kant's Final Synthesis is lucid, grammatical, and semantically precise (as is his German in Die 25 Jahre der Philosophie (75)). Simply juxtaposing a passage from the translation with the same one as it appears in Forster's German should make the case:
   that the sum of its angles are equal to two right angles, so too is
   the fact (if it is indeed a fact) that our intuition is receptive
   the ground for conceiving noumena as corresponding to it. (76)

   dass die Summe seiner Winkel gleich zwei rechten ist, so ist die
   Tatsache (wenn es denn eine ist), das unsere Anschauung eine
   rezeptive ist, der Grund dafur, das ihr Noumena entsprechen. (77)


While this is not representative of the Bowman translation as a whole, it certainly betokens the sorts of problems that one does not expect to encounter in a book aspiring to anything like the stature that the endorsements on the back of the dust jacket suggest. Readers of German will serve themselves (and the author) better by acquiring the excellently produced Klostermann paperback.

Fairfield University

Correspondence to: Phillip Stambovsky, Department of Philosophy, Fairfield University, 1073 North Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824-5195.

(1) Immanuel Kant, The Metaphysics of Morals, trans, and ed. Mary Gregor (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 6:206.

(2) Kant, Metaphysics of Morals, 6:206, as translated in Eckart Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy: A Systematic Reconstruction, trans. Brady Bowman (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2012), ix.

(3) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x. Forster's emphasis.

(4) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 373.

(5) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x.

(6) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x. Forster's emphasis.

(7) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 376.

(8) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 375.

(9) This is a context about which F6rster is silent.

(10) Kant, Metaphysics of Morals, 6:207.

(11) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 374.

(12) See Kuno Fischer, Kritik der kantischen Philosophie (Munchen: Bassermann, 1883), ch. 4 sections 2-4. A Critique of Kant, trans. W. S. Hough, authorized English edition (London: Swan, Sonnenschein, Lowrey, and Co., 1888).

(13) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 48.

(14) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 56. F6rster's emphasis.

(15) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 57.

(16) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 125.

(17) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 57.

(18) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 125.

(19) Immanuel Kant, Critique of the Power of Judgment, trans. Paul Guyer and Eric Matthews (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), 5:401-10.

(20) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x. F6rster's emphasis.

(21) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 144.

(22) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 144.

(23) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 144.

(24) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 374.

(25) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 145.

(26) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 145.

(27) Ernst Cassirer, Kant's Life and Thought, trans. James Haden (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1981), ch. 4, sec. 2.

(28) Cassirer, Kant's Life and Thought, 282.

(29) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 179-220.

(30) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 223-249.

(31) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 265-276.

(32) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, especially 362-372.

(33) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 283.

(34) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 374.

(35) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, chs. 12 and 14.

(36) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 376.

(37) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 376.

(38) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 376; Forster's emphasis.

(39) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 367; F6rster's emphasis.

(40) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 367; Forster's emphasis.

(41) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 371.

(42) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 372.

(43) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 372.

(44) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 372.

(45) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 91-92.

(46) Ernst Cassirer, "The Idea of Metamorphosis and Idealistic Morphology: Goethe," in The Problem of Knowledge: Philosophy, Science, and History Since Hegel, trans. William H. Woglom and Charles W. Hendel (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1950), 141-2, emphasis added; "Die Idee der Metamorphose und die 'idealistiche Morphologie,'" in Das Erkenntnisproblem in der Philosophie und Wissenschaft der neueren Zeit III, Gesammelte Werke, ed. Birgit Recki, vol. 5 (Hamburg: Meiner, 2000), 163. Cassirer there quotes a telling passage from Goethe's letter of May 1786 to Jacobi on Jacobi's Lehre des Spinoza.

(47) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 254; emphasis added. The finite aspect of such intuition led Goethe to conclude, pace Kant, that such understanding is not incompatible with discursive thought and hence in principle not beyond the powers of human cognition.

(48) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 375.

(49) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 375.

(50) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 372.

(51) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 371.

(52) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 371.

(53) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 371.

(54) Georg Wilhelm Hegel, Encyclopedia of the Philosophical Sciences in Basic Outline. Part I: Science of Logic, trans. Klaus Brinkmann and Daniel O. Dahlstrom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), [section] 10, Remark; Enzyklopadie der philosophischen Wissenschaften im Grundrisse: 1830, Erster Teil: Die Wissenschaft der Logik (Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1986), 54.

(55) Hegel, Encyclopedia, [section]16, Remark; translation slightly modified; Enzyklopadie, 62.

(56) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 371.

(57) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 283.

(58) Oddly, the dust jacket pictures only four.

(59) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 368.

(60) Hegel, Encyclopedia, [section]237, Addition.

(61) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 368.

(62) Hegel, Encyclopedia, [section] 244, Addition.

(63) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 368.

(64) See Hegel, Encyclopedia, [section] 244.

(65) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 241-2.

(66) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x.

(67) See Frederick Beiser, German Idealism: The Struggle against Subjectivism, 1781-1801 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2002), 257-258. Beiser's source text is Maimon's Philosophisches Worterbuch oder Beleuchtung der wichtigen Gegenstande der Philosophie in alphabetischer Ordnung, in Gesammelte Werke, ed. Valerio Verra (Hildesheim: Olms, 2000), vol. 3.

(68) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 370.

(69) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x.

(70) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, x.

(71) See in particular Beiser's German Idealism, a major study that features a section on "Fichte versus Schelling on Intellectual Intuition" and that references Forster several times. (Beiser takes issue with Forster's views on a "gap" in Kant's system, views Forster develops at length in his monograph Kant's Final Synthesis (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2000).)

(72) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, xi.

(73) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 221, 262.

(74) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 271.

(75) Ekhart Forster, Die 25 Jahre der Philosophie (Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann, 2011).

(78) Forster, The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy, 109.

(77) Forster, Die 25 Jahre der Philosophie, 119.
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Author:Stambovsky, Phillip
Publication:The Review of Metaphysics
Article Type:Critical essay
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Date:Dec 1, 2012
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