Tragedy in Hegel's Early Theological Writings

Tragedy in Hegel's Early Theological Writings

Peter Wake
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 05/05/2014
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 978-0-253-01251-7
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Tragedy plays a central role in Hegel's early writings on theology and politics. Hegel’s overarching aim in these texts is to determine the kind of mythology that would best complement religious and political freedom in modernity. Peter Wake claims that, for Hegel at this early stage, ancient Greek tragedy provided the model for such a mythology and suggested a way to oppose the rigid hierarchies and authoritarianism that characterized Europe of his day. Wake follows Hegel as he develops his idea of the essence of Christianity and its relation to the distinctly tragic expression of beauty found in Greek mythology.

Author Bio

Peter Wake is Associate Professor of Philosophy at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas.


“Elegant. Combines the virtues of close reading of extraordinary subtlety with a wide-angle scope not only to Hegel's work as a whole, but also to the enduring value of the early work.”
 — Cyril J. O'Regan, University of Notre Dame

“Wake's book is provocative and helpful because it sharpens appreciation of the complexity of the material in the ETW; it brings into focus tensions and contradictions in the texts. It contributes to the recognition of the subtlety and enduring importance of this early work.”
 — Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

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Table of Contents

List of Abbreviations
Introduction: Monotheism of Reason and the Heart, Polytheism of the Imagination and Art

Part I. Positivity and the Concrete Idea of Freedom
1. Positivity and Historical Reversal
2. On Expansion

Part II. The Spirit of Withdrawal
3. The Idea of Freedom as Independence
4. Withdrawal and Exile
5. Dialectic of Love

Conclusion: Comedy, Subjectivity, and the Negative

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