The inaugural vision of the modern age
Fall Semester Part I
Septemter 22 to December 1
Fridays, 8:00 – 9:30 PM
This class series will explore Hegel’s most influential and least understood work.
While conceived as an Introduction to his system of logic and science, this work stands on its own as a masterpiece of the Western philosophical tradition. It is safe to say that many of the themes in the Phenomenology of Spirit have defined how we understand the modern world even though this work was written 210 years ago.
Some of the themes we will discuss:
How to Begin
The Inverted World
Skeptics and Stoics
The Lord of the World
The Dialectic of Master and Slave
The Cynical Bohemian
The Beautiful Soul
Madness and Suicide
The Age of Reason
Freedom and Terror
The Moral Imperative
Grace and Redemption
Spirit Externalized as Nature and History
We will travel from the Ancient world, from the drama of Antigone to the Jacobin Terror of the French Revolution and the realization of the idea of Freedom and the World Historical Individual. At the end of this journey that Hegel likened to a philosophical “Stations of the Cross” we will gain an understanding of what it means to say “The True is the Whole”.
We will discuss how this still has relevance for us in the 21st century, what is living in Hegel today and how this legacy was appropriated by Marx and the movement for human liberation.
Alex Steinberg has previously taught the philosophy of Hegel and Marx at the New Space, the Brecht Forum and most recently the Marxist Education Project. He also taught classes ranging from the dialectics of nature, the implications of dialectics for contemporary science, and contemporary philosophical trends on the left and right inspired by Nietzsche. He has presented papers on Marx and Hegel at the Left Forum and Historical Materialism Conferences. He has also organized events for the Marxist Education Project including a Trotsky in New York Walking Tour. Alex is a member of the Local Board of Radio station WBAI and its parent organization the Pacifica National Board.