An Introduction to Hegel’s Metaphysics

Hegel had a grand conception of philosophy. He conceived its task to be the attainment of a knowledge which is absolute, that is, without limitation. However, since some of his most important, immediate, philosophical predecessors had placed striking limitations upon man’s cognitive capacities, Hegel had to rebut their restrictions in order to make his conception of the philosophical task tenable.

Hegel’s heroic, if somewhat quixotic, attempt to restore the traditional grandeur of philosophic ambition, his reasoned rejection of that increasingly popular and powerful opposition to such ambition which had culminated in Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, is the central theme of this book. In Hegel’s struggle to overcome the limitations placed upon human knowledge by his predecessors lies a major motivation of his philosophic method and a key to its comprehension.

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