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By Peter K. J. Park

A ancient research of the exclusion of Africa and Asia from smooth histories of philosophy.

In this provocative historiography, Peter okay. J. Park offers a penetrating account of an important interval within the improvement of philosophy as an instructional self-discipline. in the course of those a long time, a variety of ecu philosophers prompted by way of Immanuel Kant started to formulate the background of philosophy as a march of development from the Greeks to Kant—a family tree that supplanted present bills starting in Egypt or Western Asia and at a time while ecu curiosity in Sanskrit and Persian literature used to be flourishing. now not with no debate, those traditions have been eventually deemed outdoors the scope of philosophy and relegated to the learn of faith. Park uncovers this debate and recounts the advance of an exclusionary canon of philosophy within the a long time of the past due eighteenth and early 19th centuries. To what quantity used to be this exclusion of Africa and Asia due to the the scientization of philosophy? To what volume was once it as a result racism?

This ebook comprises the main vast description on hand at any place of Joseph-Marie de Gérando’s Histoire comparée des systèmes de philosophie, Friedrich Schlegel’s lectures at the historical past of philosophy, Friedrich Ast’s and Thaddä Anselm Rixner’s systematic integration of Africa and Asia into the background of philosophy, and the controversy among G. W. F. Hegel and the theologian August Tholuck over “pantheism.”

Africa, Asia, and the background of Philosophy is a great addition to a overlooked sector within the historical past of principles. Philosophy has lengthy suffered from exclusions that continue us from totally appreciating the contributions to our box from Africa and Asia. Park’s e-book uncovers a few of the resources of philosophy’s exclusionary practices. The ancient element is impressive.” — Elizabeth Millán, writer of Friedrich Schlegel and the Emergence of Romantic Philosophy

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Additional resources for Africa, Asia, and the History of Philosophy. Racism in the Formation of the Philosophical Canon, 1780–1830

Sample text

128 Contra Reinhold, who had argued that the history of philosophy had nothing to do with events in time and space, Tennemann held a heterodox position. He stated that events in the history of philosophy related both internally to human consciousness and externally to the world. ” “There is thus an internal and external connection among events in time. 136 Tennemann thus reasoned that the idea of science is at the same time an ideal of science, but in this case, the events relating to that science, taken together, constitute a history whose course runs from what is consummate in philosophy to what is defective.

Searching for a sure route toward the truth, but foiled always in its wishes and hopes; in the end the same questions, which were shared by the first geniuses of Greece more than twenty centuries ago, stirred up again today by such voluminous writings devoted to 31 32 Africa, Asia, and the History of Philosophy their discussion: This is the spectacle . . offered to the eyes of the observer . . enough to inspire in shallow minds a profound despondency. —Joseph-Marie de Gérando (1804)1 While the Kantian revolution in the field of history of philosophy was unfolding in Germany, another revolution in this field was occurring in France and in a neighboring corner of Germany.

The initial chapters are devoted to discussing the design of the Histoire comparée, the historiography of philosophy, and the question of the origins of philosophy. These are followed by chapters presenting the facts of the systems of philosophy in the order of their historical chronology. But what makes the Histoire comparée original and unprecedented is its Second Part: a comparative analysis of systems of philosophy. With respect to the principles of human knowledge, systems of philosophy fell into one or another of de Gérando’s six asymmetrical classes: rationalism, empiricism, idealism, materialism, dogmatism, and skepticism.

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