Polemos n. 2, 2017 / n. 1, 2018: THE SOCIAL ISSUE IN GERMAN IDEALISM

Editors for this issue: S. Tortorella, N. Cantatore


Throughout the varied spectrum of ideas that bears the collective name of German Idealism, there is the constant awareness, if not the explicit assertion, of the key role that philosophy should play in the interpretation of present time and the orientation of political action. From Kant to Hegel, philosophy is clearly defined by its practical orientation while social issues are claimed as central themes for philosophical reflection. This development echoes in two famous passages: the Kantian definition of Enlightenment as the exit from a state of minority and the Hegelian understanding of philosophy as the thinking comprehension of the present time.

A great deal of what today is being written on themes and figures of the German Idealism could well be placed within this “political” frame. On the one hand, there is the use of the conceptual instruments of German Idealism for a critical analysis of our time; on the other hand, there seems to be the aspiration to set these insights in a contemporary context. While the most recent critical theory has elaborated a theory of social justice as well as a paradigm of intersubjective recognition, both based on Hegelian thought, in the last decades a reflection on Hegel has taken place also within the English-speaking pragmatist philosophy, especially as far as concepts of “social space of reason” or “social liberty” are concerned.

The incoming issue of Pólemos journal, aims to investigate the connection between German Idealism and social issues from different perspectives, with a keen view on the historical, social and cultural context of the time, while keeping a focus on the implications on our time and the most recent non-metaphysical interpretations of the German Idealism. With the contributions to this issue, we would like to retrace the philosophical roots of a part of contemporary political philosophy, in order to achieve a better understanding of the necessary connection between philosophy and social reality.

Possible topics of contribution include:
  • Objective Spirit and forms of life;
  • Social liberty;
  • Intersubjectivity, recognition and justice;
  • Civil society and commoners;
  • Theory of action;
  • Second nature;
  • Community (Gemeinschaft) as social horizon and (pre)political unity;
  • Bildung as a philosophical task and as a political-cultural subject;
  • The concept of people (Volk) between national identity and political body;
  • The State as embodiment of the Spirit and its critical interpretation.
Brief for contributors

Contributions directly related to the suggested research lines are particularly welcome; however, papers on areas related to the main theme of the issue will be equally taken into consideration.

Academic papers should not exceed 40.000 characters (spaces included) and must include an abstract (1.000 characters) in English and Italian. Accepted languages for the papers are Italian, English, French, German and Spanish.

Proposed papers will be independently blindly reviews by two experts in the field.

The deadline for submission is 7th janvier  2018.

The contributions should be sent to cfp@rivistapolemos.it

You can download at this link the pdf file of the call.



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