The Philosopher's Voice

Philosophy, Politics, and Language in the Nineteenth Century

By Andrew Fiala

Subjects: Philosophy Of Language
Series: SUNY series in Philosophy
Paperback : 9780791454848, 324 pages, September 2002
Hardcover : 9780791454831, 324 pages, October 2002

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Table of contents

1. Introduction: The Philosopher's Voice

2. Voice in Machiavelli, Locke, and Rousseau

3. The Politics of Pure Reason

4. Kant's Political Philosophy: Progressand Philosophical Intervention

5. Fichte: Philosophy, Politics, and the German Nation

6. Fichte's Voice: Language and Political Excess

7. Hegel: Philosophy and the Spirit of Politics

8. Hegel's Voice: Language, Education, and Philosophy

9. Marx: Politics, Ideology, and Critique

10. Marx's Voice: Political Action and Political Language

11. Philosophy, Politics, and Voice:

The Enduring Struggle

Appendix: Chronology



General Index

Citation Index

Explores the relationship between philosophy and politics in the work of Kant, Fichte, Hegel, and Marx.


This analysis of the relationship between philosophy and politics recognizes that political philosophers must continually struggle to distinguish their voices from others that clamor within political life. Author Andrew Fiala asks whether it is possible to maintain a distinction between philosophical speech and other political and poetic language. His answer is that philosophy's methodological self-consciousness is what distinguishes its voice from the voice of politics. By focusing on the different ways in which this methodological norm was enacted in the lives and work of Kant, Fichte, Hegel, and Marx, the author puts the problem in a larger context and considers the roles that these thinkers played in the political history of the nineteenth century.

Andrew Fialais Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Humanistic Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay.


"Fiala's engaging style is itself a useful aid to the reader as he revisits and restates the positions of these philosophers to bring out both differences and similarities among them." — Journal of Speculative Philosophy

"Fiala has an imaginative and creative thesis: that a philosopher writes out of a concrete political perspective, and that the philosophers he studies are therefore aware of the role they play in the political arena, even if they may also claim to be speaking sub speci aeternitatis." — John W. Burbidge, author of Hegel on Logic and Religion: The Reasonableness of Christianity

"This topic is significant and important, since the relation of philosophy and politics has been raised anew recently in a number of ways—through the adventures of Martin Heidegger with Nazism, through Habermas's social theory, and through the emergence of a number of important political thinkers in the continental side of the discussion here and abroad." — Tom Rockmore, editor of New Essays on the Precritical Kant