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Title: Vittorio Hösles Eine kurze Geschichte der deutschen Philosophie
Author(s): HOLZ, Harald
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 79    Issue: 1   Date: 2017   
Pages: 129-142
DOI: 10.2143/TVF.79.1.3217828

Abstract :
This article offers a critical review of Vittorio Hösle’s Eine kurze Geschichte der deutschen Philosophie: Rückblick auf den deutschen Geist (München: C.H. Beck Verlag, 2013) (A Short History of German Philosophy: A Retrospective of the German Spirit). The first section of this review delineates the main themes Vittorio Hösle sees as representative of what he calls German spirit (Geist) in philosophy. Hösle’s criteria for inclusion in his survey of German philosophers are that they write in German (Nicholas Cusanus and Leibniz excepted) and that they have sufficient importance for the progress of philosophy in the German-speaking world. In part two, this review then surveys a few problems not sufficiently solved or not even considered in Hösle’s book. Hösle’s method is to lay out how each of the central figures considered (e.g. Leibniz, Kant, Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, Husserl, Heidegger) approached philosophy, along with a commentary on their main works. The correlations between these main figures and their intellectual surroundings creates a tight network of information. In part three, this review summarizes the central issues at play by setting out the questions surrounding both the rightful rise and lamented crash of this approach to philosophy, e.g. between Leibniz and Kant on the one side and Marx and Nietzsche on the other. Hösle’s book is well-written, readable, and — something rarely seen — explains its topic in a truly gripping manner.

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