Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 19 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

As becomes apparent from his cursory treatment of the earlier philosophical systems of the East, Hegel’s account of the history of philosophy is decidedly Eurocentric, and this in turn reflects an important feature of his conception of the nature of philosophy itself. While abstraction plays a crucial role in its method, philosophy is not ultimately about the abstractions belonging to some purported platonic realm: it is about the actual, concrete world. Thus the invention of philosophy reflected a peculiarity of the outlook of its Greek inventors: their Heimatilichkeit, their distinct sense of feeling at home in the world. The Greeks, he claimed, did not employ abstract thought in an attempt to escape into a realm of abstractions. Rather, they employed systematic thought as part of the process of creating their own way of life in their world, thus linking the development of philosophy to the development of democratic institutions.

Keywords: Heimatlichkeit, philosophy, Eurocentric, Greek, abstraction, concreteness

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.