Translating Hegel: The Phenomenology of Spirit and Modern Philosophy

Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit stands at the crossroads of modern philosophy. Taking us from the lowest and simplest level of sense-certainty through ever more complex forms of knowing and acting, Hegel’s monumental work eventually aspires to nothing less than a blueprint for absolute knowledge: a unity of subject and object, finite and infinite, man and world, a notion that has continually provoked new reactions and counterreactions throughout the course of modernity.

Is Hegel’s work the consummation of classical metaphysics or the dawn of something new? Is he a fundamentally Christian thinker or does he herald the death of God? Should we read him as a precursor to modern phenomenology and hermeneutics, sociology of knowledge, pragmatism, deconstruction? In short: do we need to translate Hegel into some modern vocabulary to make him relevant to the present? And if so, what would such a translation imply for our reading of his texts?

Translating Hegel: The Phenomenology of Spirit and Modern Philosophy contains the contributions from a symposium organized on the occasion of the first Swedish translation of the Phenomenology. Bringing together a group of eminent Hegel scholars who address questions of translation and interpretation in the broadest sense, from historical hermeneutics to the actual practice of textual translation, it reveals the continued presence of Hegel in modern thought.

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