The Romantic Absolute: Being And Knowing In Early German Romantic Philosophy, 1795-1804

Hardcover | December 30, 2013

byDalia Nassar

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The absolute was one of the most significant philosophical concepts in the early nineteenth century, particularly for the German romantics. Its exact meaning and its role within philosophical romanticism remain, however, a highly contested topic among contemporary scholars.  In The Romantic Absolute, Dalia Nassar offers an illuminating new assessment of the romantics and their understanding of the absolute. In doing so, she fills an important gap in the history of philosophy, especially with respect to the crucial period between Kant and Hegel.
            
Scholars today interpret philosophical romanticism along two competing lines: one emphasizes the romantics’ concern with epistemology, the other their concern with metaphysics. Through careful textual analysis and systematic reconstruction of the work of three major romantics—Novalis, Friedrich Schlegel, and Friedrich Schelling—Nassar shows that neither interpretation is fully satisfying. Rather, she argues, one needs to approach the absolute from both perspectives. Rescuing these philosophers from frequent misunderstanding, and even dismissal, she articulates not only a new angle on the philosophical foundations of romanticism but on the meaning and significance of the notion of the absolute itself.

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The absolute was one of the most significant philosophical concepts in the early nineteenth century, particularly for the German romantics. Its exact meaning and its role within philosophical romanticism remain, however, a highly contested topic among contemporary scholars.  In The Romantic Absolute, Dalia Nassar offers an illuminating...

Dalia Nassar is assistant professor of philosophy at Villanova University and an Australian Research Council Fellow at the University of Sydney. She lives in Sydney, Australia. 
Format:HardcoverDimensions:360 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.1 inPublished:December 30, 2013Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022608406X

ISBN - 13:9780226084060

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Abbreviations
 
Introduction
 
Part One: Novalis
1.   Interpreting the Fichte-Studien
2.   Beyond the Subjective Self: Hemsterhuis, Kant, and the Question of the Whole
3.   Romanticizing Nature and the Self
4.   A Living Organon of the Sciences
      Conclusion to Part 1: Romanticism and Idealism
 
Part Two: Schlegel
5.   New Philosophical Ideals: Schlegel’s Critique of First Principles
6.   From Epistemology to Ontology: The Lectures on Transcendental Idealism
7.   Becoming, Nature, and Freedom
8.   Presenting Nature: From the System of Fragments to the Romantic Novel
      Conclusion to Part 2: Schlegel as Philosopher
 
Part Three: Schelling
9.   The Early Schelling: Between Fichte and Spinoza
10. The Philosophy of Nature
11. From the System of Transcendental Idealism to the Identity Philosophy
12. Identity Philosophy and the Philosophy of Art
      Conclusion to Part 3
 
Conclusion: The Romantic Absolute
 
Notes
Works Cited

Editorial Reviews

“In TheRomantic Absolute, Dalia Nassar explores the treacherous philosophical territory between Kant and Hegel, which is the reserve of the early romantics: the poet Friedrich von Hardenberg (Novalis), the classicist Friedrich Schlegel, and the boy-philosopher Friedrich Schelling. Danger lurks here. Without a reliable guide, the reader can quickly tumble into crevasses of incomprehension. Nassar provides such a guide. With articulate verve, she shows how the romantics construed nature and mind as identical, how in Schelling’s terms nature was the poetry of mind and mind the outgrowth of nature. Following a careful path through thickets of disputing critics, she illuminates the darker areas of German romanticism and protects the reader from sliding into the slough of despond.”