Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768dbb666b-v9bzm Total loading time: 0.442 Render date: 2023-02-04T10:24:39.403Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

5 - Idealism in nineteenth-century German literature

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2013

Ian Cooper
Affiliation:
University of Kent
Nicholas Boyle
Affiliation:
University of Cambridge
Liz Disley
Affiliation:
University of Cambridge
Christoph Jamme
Affiliation:
Leuphana Universität Lüneburg, Germany
Ian Cooper
Affiliation:
University of Kent, Canterbury
Get access

Summary

Post-Kantian Idealism is not only the defining force in nineteenth-century German philosophy, but also the major intellectual current giving shape to nineteenth-century German literature. Its significance in both realms is owed to the long trajectory – encompassing both development and rejection – inspired by its most systematic representative: the speculative absolute Idealism of Hegel. This was the point of departure for a lineage in German philosophy which sought variously to modify and fundamentally to challenge Hegel, by replacing his dialectical, or ‘spiritual’, terms with material processes and, in the later nineteenth century, by insisting on the primacy of will. Hegel's revolutionary development of Kant's own revolution (his ‘post-Kantianism in a new vein’), and the long-term philosophical reaction it engendered, are also the source of the most compelling historical connections to be drawn between many of Germany's most significant literary figures of the nineteenth century. One reason for this is that the themes of Hegel's thought in the broadest sense – that is, not simply (or even primarily) of that part of it which is concerned with literature – touch directly on those of literary writing, in seemingly disparate modes, from Friedrich Hölderlin to Thomas Mann. In the first major document of speculative Idealism, Phenomenology of Spirit (Phänomenologie des Geistes, 1807), Hegel's account of self-consciousness develops patterns familiar from his earlier, theological, association with Hölderlin, and combines these with an analysis of social being that has subterranean links with the conceptual foundations of European realism, and so, beyond any theory Hegel himself could give of the genre, to the novel. German poetry, prose fiction and drama of the nineteenth century repeatedly intersect with, and respond to, the intellectual tradition that Hegel initiated, and in which these two related aspects of the speculative achievement – its religious inheritance and its realistic potential – enter into deep tensions.

Type
Chapter
Information
The Impact of Idealism
The Legacy of Post-Kantian German Thought
, pp. 92 - 120
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2013

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Hegel, G. W. F., Werke in zwanzig Bänden, eds. Moldenhauer, Eva and Michel, Karl Markus, 20 vols. (Frankfurt a.M.: Suhrkamp, 1970), iii, 153Google Scholar
Trunz, Erich (ed.), Goethes Werke: Hamburger Ausgabe, 14 vols. (Hamburg: Wegner, 1949), iii
Büchner, Georg, Sämtliche Werke, ed. Henri Poschmann, 2 vols. (Frankfurt a.M.: Deutscher Klassiker Verlag, 1992), i, 234
Feuerbach, Ludwig and Sämtliche Werke, ed. Sass, Hans-Martin, 13 vols. (Stuttgart: Frommann, 1962), vi, 262
Wagner, Richard, Gesammelte Schriften und Dichtungen (hereafter GSD), 2nd edn, 10 vols. (Leipzig: Fritzsch, 1887), iv, 310Google Scholar
Strauss, David Friedrich, Der alte und der neue Glaube: ein Bekenntnis, 4th edn (Bonn: Strauss, 1873), 94Google Scholar
Mann, Thomas, Gesammelte Werke, 12 vols. (Berlin: Fischer, 1960), xi, 554Google Scholar
Pinkard, Terry, German Philosophy 1760–1860: the legacy of Idealism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), 217CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pippin, Robert B., Hegel's Idealism: the satisfactions of self-consciousness (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989), 162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Donahue, William Collins and Denham, Scott (eds.), History and Literature: essays in honor of Karl S. Guthke (Tübingen: Stauffenberg, 2000), 29–46
Fichte, Johann Gottlieb, Johann Gottlieb Fichte's sämmtliche Werke, ed. Fichte, Immanuel Hermann, 8 vols. (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1965 (Veit, 1845/6)), i, 432Google Scholar
Ruppert, Hans (ed.), Goethes Bibliothek: Katalog (Weimar: Arion, 1958), 447
Hölderlin, Friedrich, Sämtliche Werke: große Stuttgarter Ausgabe, ed. Beißner, Friedrich and Beck, Adolf, 8 vols. (Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 1943–85), iv, 275–6
Boyle, Nicholas, Sacred and Secular Scriptures: a Catholic approach to literature (London: Darton Longman & Todd, 2004), 171–86Google Scholar
Reddick, John, Georg Büchner: the shattered whole (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994), 37Google Scholar
Walker, John, ‘Two realisms: German literature and philosophy 1830–1890’, in Saul, Nicholas (ed.), Philosophy and German Literature 1700–1990 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), 102–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Requadt, Paul, ‘Zu Büchners Kunstanschauung’, in Bildlichkeit der Dichtung: Aufsätze zur deutschen Literatur vom 18. bis 20. Jahrhundert (Munich: Fink, 1974), 106–38Google Scholar
Toews, John Edward, Hegelianism: the path toward dialectical humanism, 1805–1841 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981), 283CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Strauss, David Friedrich, Die christliche Glaubenslehre in ihrer geschichtlichen Entwicklung und im Kampfe mit der modernen Wissenschaft, 2 vols. (Tübingen: Osiander, 1840), i, 68Google Scholar
Strauss, David Friedrich, Das Leben Jesu, kritisch bearbeitet, 2 vols. (Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 1969Google Scholar
Braungart, Wolfgang, ‘Tod und Kunst, Geist und Bewusstsein: Zu Eduard Mörikes “Erinna an Sappho”’, Oxford German Studies 36 (2007), 76–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hebbel, Friedrich, Werke, ed. Fricke, Gerhard, Keller, Werner and Pörnbacher, Karl, 3 vols. (Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 1963), i, 306
Lamport, Francis, ‘Three Schopenhauerian trilogies: Grillparzer, Wagner, Hebbel’, Oxford German Studies 39 (2010), 54–69
Windell, George G., ‘Hegel, Feuerbach, and Wagner's Ring’, Central European History 9 (1976), 25–57CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Williamson, George S., The Longing for Myth in Germany: religion and aesthetic culture from Romanticism to Nietzsche (University of Chicago Press, 2004), 191Google Scholar
Strauss, David Friedrich, Ausgewählte Briefe, ed. Zeller, Eduard (Bonn: Strauss, 1895), 162–3
Robertson, Ritchie, The ‘Jewish Question’ in German Literature 1749–1939: emancipation and its discontents (Oxford University Press, 1999), 159–62Google Scholar
Wagner, Richard, Sämtliche Briefe, eds. Strobel, Gertrud, Wolf, Werner et al., 18 vols. (Leipzig: Deutscher Verlag für Musik, 1979–2000Google Scholar
Nietzsche, Friedrich, Kritische Gesamtausgabe, eds. Colli, Giorgio and Montinari, Mazzino, 25 vols. (Berlin: de Gruyter, 1972) (hereafter KG), iii, 2, 161Google Scholar
Young, Julian, Nietzsche's Philosophy of Art (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Geuss, Raymond, ‘Nietzsche and genealogy’, in Morality, Culture, and History: essays on German philosophy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 1–28Google Scholar
Mulhall, Stephen, Philosophical Myths of the Fall (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2005), 40Google Scholar
Detering, Heinrich, Der Antichrist und der Gekreuzigte: Friedrich Nietzsches letzte Texte (Göttingen: Wallstein, 2010), 25–37Google Scholar
Swales, Martin, ‘Symbolic patterns or realistic plenty? Thomas Mann's Buddenbrooks and the European novel’, Publications of the English Goethe Society 60 (1989–90), 80–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Walker, John, The Truth of Realism: a reassessment of the German novel 1830–1900 (Oxford: Legenda, 2011), 16–31Google Scholar
Heller, Erich, The Ironic German: a study of Thomas Mann (London: Secker & Warburg, 1958), 38Google Scholar
Reed, T. J., Thomas Mann: the uses of tradition (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1974), 48Google Scholar
Frizen, Werner, ‘Thomas Mann und das Christentum’, in Koopmann, Helmut (ed.), Thomas-Mann-Handbuch, 3rd edn (Stuttgart: Kröner, 2001), 307–26Google Scholar

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×