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Philosophies of History: From Enlightenment to Post-Modernity

ISBN: 978-0-631-21237-9
380 pages
September 2000, ©2000, Wiley-Blackwell
Philosophies of History: From Enlightenment to Post-Modernity (063121237X) cover image


This important book charts the development of philosophical thinking about history over the past 250 years, combining extracts from key texts with new explanatory and critical discussion. The book is designed to make the work of thinkers such as Hume, Herder, Hegel, Dilthey, Nietzsche, Heidegger and Foucault accessible to students with no prior knowledge of Western philosophy.

An introductory section is followed by nine further chapters exploring contrasting schools of thought. The volume reveals the origins of contemporary trends in the discipline and relates wider philosophical reflections to the study of history itself. It also points to connections between philosophy of history and literary and cultural theory which have developed in recent decades.

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Table of Contents

1. On Philosophizing about History.

2. Enlightenment.

David Hume (1711-1776).

Condoret, Marquis de (Marie-Jean-Antoine-Nicholas Caritat) (1743-1794).

Immanuel Kant (1724-1804).

3. Classical Historicism.

Johann Gottfried Herder (1744-1803).

Wilhelm von Humbolt (1767-1835).

Friedrick Scheiermacher.

Georg Wilhelm.

Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831).

Leopold von Ranke. (1795-1886).

4. Positivism.

Auguste Comte. (1798-1897).

John Stewart Mill. (1806-1873).

Henry Thomas Buckle. (1821-1862).

5. Suprahistory.

Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860).

S?ren Kierkegaard (1813-1855).

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900).

6. Secular Historicism.

Wilhelm Diltherly (1831-1911).

Wilhelm Windelband (1848-1915).

Henrich Rickert (1863-1936).

Georg Simmel (1858-1918).

Max Weber (1864-1920).

7. Hermeneutics.

Edmund Husser. (1859-1938).

Martin Heidegger (1889-1976).

Hans Georg Gadamer (1900).

Paul Ricoeur (1913-).

8. Kulturkritik.

Karl Marx (1818-1883).

Georg Luk?cs (1885-1971).

Walter Benjamin (1892-1940).

J?rgen Habermas (1929- ).

9. Narrativism.

Cluade LUvi-Strauss. (1908- ).

Roland Barthes (1915-1980).

Hayden White (1928- ).

Paul Ricoeur (1913- ).

10. Posthistory.

Michel Foucault (1926-1984).

Jean Baudrillard (1929- ).

Francis Fukuyama (1952- ).


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Author Information

Robert M. Burns is Lecturer in the Department of Historical and Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths College, London. He completed undergraduate degrees in History and Theology and obtained his doctorate at Princeton University in philosophy of religion. In the last ten years at Goldsmiths he has introduced and developed courses in the history of philosophy including a course in philosophy of history out of which the present book emerged. He is the author of The Great Debate on Miracles: From Joseph Glanvill to David Hume (1981).

Hugh Rayment-Pickard received his PhD from the University of London for a thesis on Jacques Derrida. He taught philosophy of history and history of philosophy for several years in the Department of Historical and Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He is also a priest in the Church of England

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"Philosophies of History will serve as a valuable introduction and point of reference to historians and history students who want to understand what the philosophers have been saying about their subject." Richard J. Evans, Professor of Modern History, University of Cambridge <!--end-->

"'Philosophy of History' is usually limited either to discussion of a narrow canon of historical speculators or to abstract conceptualizing, and it is useful to have a work, including both primary texts and commentary, that brings together both lines of interpretation." Donald R. Kelley, James Westfall Thompson Professor of History, Rutgers University

"The primary purpose of this work is to serve as a sourcebook, and in this regard it is excellent. But perhaps its chief virtue is how well the documents are introduced. Graceful and succinct, it can serve as a guide not only to students beginning their study of the philosophy of history but to their instructors as well." Choice

"The editors have provided a veritable quarry of potentially valuable source-material." History

"This is a superb book for use in an upper-level history and theory course." History: Reviews of New Books

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