The Possibility of Philosophical History

Gordon Graham

in The Shape of the Past

Published in print February 1997 | ISBN: 9780192892553
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191670619 | DOI:

Series: OPUS

The Possibility of Philosophical History

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This chapter is concerned with fundamental objections to the logical possibility of philosophical history. Philosophical history is a combination of two disciplines which are often conceived to be distinct. This results in the scepticism that the formulation of such a discipline is not plausible. Immanuel Kant was the most prominent philosopher who formulated the idea of a universal history. According to Kant, though, the empirical study of historical phenomena is essential to the understanding of the human past, in itself it is insufficient because the plans of individuals taken on their own cannot explain the emergence of developing forms of thought and civil association.

Keywords: philosophical history; universal history; Immanuel Kant; historical phenomena; civil association

Chapter.  10519 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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