A History of Hegelianism in Golden Age Denmark, Tome I

The Heiberg Period: 1824-1836, 2nd Revised and Augmented Edition


This is the first of a three-volume work dedicated to exploring the influence of G.W.F. Hegel’s philosophical thinking in Golden Age Denmark. The work demonstrates that the largely overlooked tradition of Danish Hegelianism played a profound and indeed constitutive role in many spheres of Golden Age culture.
This initial tome covers the period from the beginning of the Hegel reception in the Danish Kingdom in the 1820s until the end of 1836. The dominant figure from this period is the poet and critic Johan Ludvig Heiberg, who attended Hegel’s lectures in Berlin in 1824 and then launched a campaign to popularize Hegel’s philosophy among his fellow countrymen. Using his journal Kjøbenhavns flyvende Post as a platform, Heiberg published numerous articles containing ideas that he had borrowed from Hegel. Several readers felt provoked by Heiberg’s Hegelianism and wrote critical responses to him, many of which appeared in Kjøbenhavnsposten, the rival of Heiberg’s journal. Through these debates Hegel’s philosophy became an important part of Danish cultural life.

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Jon Stewart is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Philosophy of the Slovak Academy of Sciences. He has worked for many years in the field of nineteenth-century Continental philosophy with a specialization in Hegel and Kierkegaard.
Preface to the First Edition
Preface to the Second Edition
List of Illustrations

Introduction: Hegel and Hegelianism
 I Hegel’s Berlin Period: 1818–1831
 II The Development of so-called Right and Left Hegelianism
 III Danish Hegelianism
 IV Thesis and Methodology of the Present Study

1 The Earliest Danish Encounters with Hegel’s Philosophy : Before 1824
 I Baggesen’s Possible Encounter with Hegel in 1794
 II Johan Erik von Berger’s Relation to Hegel from circa 1797
 III Steffens’ Relation to Hegel from 1801
 IV Oehlenschläger’s Encounter with Hegel in Jena in 1806
 V Sibbern’s Journey to Prussia and the German States from 1811–1813
 VI Hans Christian Ørsted’s Encounter with Hegel in 1812
 VII Clausen’s Stay in Berlin: 1818–1819
 VIII Peder Hjort’s Visit to Berlin in 1821
 IX Krarup’s Visit to Berlin: 1821–1822
 X Sibbern’s On Knowledge and Enquiry
 XI Sibbern’s Elements of Logic
 XII The Announcement about Hegel’s Student, Franz Mavros
 XIII Rudelbach’s Visit to Berlin

2 Heiberg and the Howitz Controversy: 1824
 I Heiberg’s Trip to Berlin and His Hegelian Conversion
 II Howitz’s Article “On Madness and Ascribing Responsibility”
 III Anders Sandøe Ørsted’s Response to Howitz
 IV Mynster’s Response to Howitz
 V Sibbern’s Response to Howitz
 VI Howitz’s Response to His Critics: Determinism, or Hume against Kant
 VII Heiberg’s Hegelian Response: On Human Freedom
 VIII The Reception of Heiberg’s On Human Freedom
 IX Heiberg’s Outline of a System of Aesthetics as a Speculative Science
 X Heiberg’s Flight from Kiel

3 Heiberg’s Return to Copenhagen: 1825–1826
 I Heiberg’s Contingency Regarded from the Point of View of Logic
 II Sibbern’s Review of Heiberg’s Treatise on Contingency
 III Poul Martin Møller’s “On the Development of Popular Ideas”
 IV Mynster’s Article on the Law of Identity
 V Heiberg’s Poem “Life and Death”

4 Heiberg’s Initial Attempts to Popularize Philosophy in Kjøbenhavns flyvende Post: 1827
 I Heiberg’s Article, “Confessions of an English Opium Eater”
 II Heiberg’s “On Solger”
 III Heiberg’s “A Letter Found on the Street”
 IV Heiberg’s Nemesis Essay
 V Zeuthen’s Visit to Berlin
 VI Heiberg’s “On the Materialist and Idealist Principle in Language”
 VII Heiberg’s Review of Lucubrations of a Prisoner of the State
 VIII Heiberg’s “A Letter from Baggesen”
 IX Heiberg’s “On Tegnér’s Frithiof”

5 Heiberg’s Attempt to Develop a Hegelian System of Aesthetics in Kjøbenhavns flyvende Post: 1828
 I Heiberg’s Taxonomy of Poetic Forms in His Polemic with Oehlenschläger
 II Peder Hjort’s Response to Heiberg’s Criticism of Oehlenschläger
 III Heiberg’s Taxonomy of Natural Beauty in “On Beauty in Nature”
 IV Kjøbenhavnsposten’s Response to Heiberg’s Criticism of Jacob Baden
 V Heiberg’s Development of Dramatic Character
 VI Kjøbenhavnsposten’s “On Occasion of Flyvende post’s No. 42”
 VII A Brief Article in Kjøbenhavnsposten, “Hegel’s Philosophy”
 VIII Heiberg’s “Cousin’s Visits at Goethe’s”
 IX Heiberg’s Account of the Bad Infinity in “A few Words about the Infinite”

6 Sibbern’s Philosophical Archive and Collection and the Resumption of the Flyvende Post: 1829–1830
 I Peter Christian Kierkegaard’s Stay in Berlin
 II Sibbern’s “On Abstraction and Abstract Analysis”
 III Sibbern’s “On Intellectual Intuition”
 IV Heiberg’s Poetical “Letter to the Magic Lantern Double in Sorø”
 V Heiberg’s Review, “Bretschneider’s Defense of Rationalism”
 VI Lorenzen’s Review of Heise’s Plato Edition
 VII Heiberg’s Discussion of the Correspondence between Goethe and Schiller

7 Heiberg’s Promulgation of Hegelianism at the Royal Military College: 1831–1832
 I Heiberg’s Overview of the Danish belles lettres
 II Zeuthen’s Something about Philosophy and its Cultivation
 III Zeuthen’s for Aesthetics and Philosophy
 IV Hegel’s Death and the Speculation about His Successor
 V Zeuthen’s On the Moral Independence of Man
 VI Heiberg’s Speculative Logic
 VII The Critical Reception of Heiberg’s Speculative Logic

8 The Debate about Heiberg’s On the Significance of Philosophy for the Present Age: 1833
 I Zeuthen’s On the Idea of Modesty
 II The Article “Hegel and Steffens”
 III Heiberg’s On the Significance of Philosophy for the Present Age
 IV Zeuthen’s Elucidations and Heiberg’s Response
 V Mynster’s “On Religious Conviction”
 VI The Review of On the Significance of Philosophy in Kjøbenhavnsposten
 VII Tryde’s Review of On the Significance of Philosophy
 VIII Heiberg’s Response
 IX Tryde’s Rejoinder
 X Møller’s Lectures on the History of Ancient Philosophy
 XI Zeuthen’s Second Journey

9 The Resumption of Heiberg’s Flyvende Post: 1834–1835
 I Heiberg’s “Symbolism”
 II The Satirical Article, “Excerpts from Gumba’s Posthumous Manuscripts”
 III Heiberg’s “Letters to a Village Pastor”
 IV Heiberg’s Introductory Lecture to the Logic Course
 V Møller’s Review of Sibbern’s On Poetry and Art

10 The End of an Era: 1836
 I Møller’s Review of The Extremes
 II Weis’ “Some Remarks on the Philosophy of Law and Positive Law”
 III Peder Hjort’s “From a New Letter from the Provinces”
 IV Kierkegaard and the Satirical Drama: “The Collegium Politicum of the Flyvende Post
 V Martensen’s Journey Abroad
 VI Heiberg and Martensen in Paris
 VII Sibbern’s Criticism of Hegel’s Account of Socrates
 VIII A Response to Sibbern’s Criticism of Hegel’s Account of Socrates
 IX The Transition to the Next Period of the Hegel Reception in Denmark

 I Secondary Sources on the Danish Hegel Reception
 II Primary Texts and Sources Used
 III Secondary Literature and Material Used

Index of Persons
Subject Index
This work will be relevant to students and scholars interested in Continental philosophy, Hegel Studies, Kierkegaard Studies, Scandinavian Studies, Danish history, and religion in the 19th century. It is suitable for classroom use in courses on philosophy in the nineteenth century.
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